Across the Margin: The Podcast
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Host Michael Shields brings you Beyond the Margin, guiding you deeper into the stories told at the online literary and cultural magazine, Across the Margin. Listen in as they take you on a storytelling journey, one where you are bound to meet a plethora of intriguing writers, wordsmiths, poets, artists, activists, musicians, and unhinged eccentrics illustrating the notion that there are captivating stories to be found everywhere.

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    Episode 55: Wasn't That A Time With Author Jesse Jarnow

    In this latest episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast host Michael Shields welcomes author Jesse Jarnow to the podcast to discuss his latest work, Wasn't That a Time: The Weavers, the Blacklist, and the Battle for the Soul of America. Jesse Jarnow’s writing on music, technology, and culture has appeared via Pitchfork, Wired.com, Rolling Stone, the New York Times, and elsewhere, and he is a contributing editor at Relix. He is the author of Heads: A Biography of Psychedelic America and Big Day Coming: Yo La Tengo and the Rise of Indie Rock. Jesse hosts The Frow Show on the independent Jersey City radio station WFMU and is the host of the podcast Alternative Routes (Osiris Media). His latest, The Weavers, the Blacklist, and the Battle for the Soul of America, is a deeply insightful book which details the remarkable rise of Pete Seeger's unlikely band of folk heroes, from basement hootenannies to the top of the charts, and the harassment campaign that brought them down.

    Exploring how a pop group's harmonies might be heard as a threat worthy of decades of investigation by the FBI, Wasn't That a Time turns the black-and-white 1950s into vivid color, using the Weavers to illuminate a dark and complex period of American history. With origins in the radical folk collective the Almanac Singers and the ambitious People's Songs, the singing activists in the Weavers set out to change the world with songs as their weapons, pioneering the use of music as a transformative political organizing tool.

    Listen in as Michael And Jesse discuss what made the Weavers so special and influential, and as they expound upon the history of folk music as explored in Jarnow’s book while examining the amount of research it took for this work to come to life, the power of music and art in combatting oppression, and much, much more.

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    Episode 54: The Year In Music, 2018

    With the final episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast of 2018, host Michael Shields curates a pairing of conversations that celebrates the varied and wondrous music released this year. Joined by the head of ATM''s Art Department, editor/artist Chris Thompson, the Top 50 Albums of 2018 as selected by the staff of Across The Margin is analyzed, where marvelous releases by the likes of Kamasi Washington, Janelle Monáe, Phosphorecent, Khruangbin, David Byrne and Spirtualized (and more!) are heralded. Up next, Michael converses with music connoisseurs, and hosts of the podcast Beyond the Pond, Brian Brinkman and David Goldstein. Beyond the Pond is a podcast that introduces listeners to a vast array of bands and artists, starting with specific pieces of improvisation by the Vermont-based band Phish. The aim of Beyond the Pond is to take music fans out of their specific comfort zones and, with the aid of their wealth of musical knowledge, steer people towards a more diverse and eclectic smattering of music. Join in on a music-centric odyssey of an episode, where the sonic bounties of today are trumpeted and rightfully earn their appreciation.

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    Episode 53: The Emperor's Handbook

    In the latest episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast, ATM’s Book Club is back in session and this time it is The Emperor's Handbook by Marcus Aurelius that is placed squarely beneath the microscope. The Emperor's Handbook is a book that holds within it an abundance of enduring advice from one of the most powerful leaders in all of history. Marcus Aurelius was at the helm of the Roman Empire at its height, yet he remained true to a virtuous code of ethics and was unchanged by the wealth and power that debased many of his predecessors. The Emperor's Handbook is awash with many of the foundational teachings that aim to ground a person, and steer their thoughts and actions towards a path or righteousness, and this episode serves as an ode to Aurelius’ sage convictions.

    To assist in the dissection of The Emperor's Handbook, Across The Margin once again turns to the always inspiring George Guidotti who returns for his fifth episode. In a previous episode, George helped critically dissect author G. Edward Griffin’s weighty novel, The Creature from Jekyll Island, which promotes undisclosed theories about the motives behind the creation of the United States Federal Reserve System. Following that, George aided in a deep dive into Sebastian Junger’s novel Tribe: On Homecoming & Belonging, a book that examines humanity’s innate attraction to tribal societies and explains why we are stronger when we come together, and how that can be achieved in today’s divided world. He then helped explore writer Joseph Campbell’s deeply insightful and affecting book The Power of Myth, before finally joining in an examination of the memoir of the late, great John Perry Barlow, Mother America Night: My Life In Crazy Times. In this episode, he returns to discuss some of the more inspiring advice ever compiled in one place, within Marcus Aurelius' The Emperor's Handbook.

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    Episode 52: End Climate Silence with Dr. Genevieve Guenther

    In the latest episode of Across The Margin: The Podcast host Michael Shields interviews the Founder & Director of EndClimateSilence.org, Dr. Genevieve Guenther. EndClimateSilence.org is a volunteer organization dedicated to helping the media link stories about Climate-Change impacts to Climate Change itself. Mobilizing through digital activism, they are an organization motivated by the awareness that Climate Change possesses a grave danger to humanity and that an immediate transition from fossil fuels to safe energy is necessary in order to preserve a planet that supports civilization. EndClimateSilence.org recognizes that climate change has begun to hurt people, and it is the media's job to report on that fact.

    In this episode Michael and Dr. Guenther dive deeply into the importance and fallout surrounding the U.N Special Report on Global Warming, the abject failure of the media in correctly reporting about Climate Change, the wildfires ravaging California and how they relate to Climate Change, the Midterm elections and how they will affect Climate Change policy, Dr Guenther’s article “Who Is the We in “We Are Causing Climate Change”?, and much more. Join in on one of the most urgent and timely episodes of Across The Margin: The Podcast yet!

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    Episode 51: What Really Happened with Andrew Jenks

    In this latest episode of Beyond The Margin, host Michael Shields interviews award-winning filmmaker, TV producer, writer and podcaster Andrew Jenks with an episode focused on his latest project WHAT REALLY HAPPENED? Andrew Jenks is a prodigious storyteller who found success early on in his career. His participatory documentary Room 355, set in an assisted living facility, was picked up by HBO when he was just 19 years old. Following that he crafted additional documentaries aiming attention on the U.S. Criminal Justice System (dream/killer), the struggles of living with HIV/AIDS (It’s Not Over), and a bevy of other extraordinary stories (The Zen of Bobby Z, All American Family, Posterized). The New York Times has remarked that Andrew’s work “shines a light on populations that many of us would just as soon forget,” and now, he is utilizing his storytelling and research-based investigative reporting prowess in the podcasting realm with WHAT REALLY HAPPENED?, a podcast where Andrew examines and contextualizes famous figures and historical events, while discovering untold stories and unraveling newfound narratives. Andrew often times throws a wrench in the gears of history, getting either closer to the truth or creating more questions. WHAT REALLY HAPPENED? is executive produced by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Dany Garcia of Seven Bucks Productions, Brian Gewirtz, Andrew Jenks and Cadence 13.

    In this episode, Michael and Andrew dig into the intricacies of the podcast series, and examine Jenks’ personal connection to the stories he is telling, ranging in topic from Winston Churchill to Michael Jordan to Bridgegate, Britney Spears and beyond. What this episode amounts to is an introduction to an altogether fascinating and talented filmmaker and human being, and also a behind the scenes look at a remarkably compelling podcast series.

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    Episode 50: Active Measures with Jack Bryan

    To mark its 50th episode, Beyond the Margin tackles one of the most pressing concerns of modern times: Russian influence in the United States’ 2016 presidential election and its ongoing sway on the President of the United States. To accomplish this in a comprehensive manner, host Michael Shields interviews filmmaker Jack Bryan, the figure behind one of 2018’s most talked about documentaries. Bryan is the director, writer, and producer of Active Measures (Available on iTunes and Hulu now!), a documentary which exposes a 30-year history of covert political warfare devised by Vladimir Putin to disrupt, influence, and ultimately control world events and democratic nations through cyber attacks, propaganda campaigns, and corruption. Bryan’s film is an important work of storytelling that provides a rich context for Russia's interference by tracing the history of its government’s shrewd geopolitical machinations.

    Jack Bryan is a dynamic filmmaker, and one intent on telling a story that must be told for the sake of Democracy’s well being in America. In this episode, Michael and Jack unravel the true depth and scope of "the Russia story" as seen in Active Measures. So prepare to dive deep into an extremely important episode that thoroughly explores one of the wildest and most comprehensively orchestrated scandals in political history.

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    Episode 49: The Deuce with Gary Carr

    In the latest episode of Across The Margin’s podcast, host Michael Shields dives into the seedy underworld of 1970’s New York City with the help of the incredibly talented actor Gary Carr, in an episode that revolves around HBO’s series The Deuce. The drama series, whose second season premieres September 9th at 9 p.m., is a show about the legalization, and subsequent rise of, the porn industry in America. Created by David Simon (The Wire, Treme, Show Me A Hero) and writer/producer George Pelecanos, The Deuce chronicles a unique period of time in America when the sex trade became mainstream and porn’s popularity exploded. This episode provides a glimpse into what lies ahead in The Deuce’s second season, while marveling at the weighty themes present in the entire series, from the ills of capitalism to the misfortunes of gentrification and to the corruptions of the justice system in America.

    Gary Carr is a multi-talented actor, director and musician, and he shares his insight into The Deuce and his role as C.C., a pimp, in this terse but informative episode. Carr is best known for his role as Sergeant Fidel Best in Death in Paradise and as the charming jazz musician Jack Ross in Downton Abbey, and his brilliant turn as C.C. in The Deuce is one for which he will be remembered for years to come. Join in as Michael and Gary dissect the psychology between pimps and their girls, the unity that exists between those that dwell in society’s margins, and the humanization of those often shunned by society that can be found in The Deuce, plus much, more!

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    Episode 48: The Realness with WNYC's Mary Harris

    In the latest episode of Across The Margin’s podcast, host Michael Shields introduces listeners to The Realness, a podcast series exploring the life and death of the rapper Prodigy which focuses in on his lifelong battle with Sickle Cell Anemia. To gain substantive insight into all the series has to offer, this episode features an interview with one of the hosts of The Realness and executive producer of WNYC’s health unit, Mary Harris. Michael and Mary dig into Prodigy’s life story in this episode, and dissect the broader issues surrounding Sickle Cell Anemia — a condition that overwhelmingly affects black Americans and is continuously underfunded — including medical racism and institutional neglect.

    Prodigy  stood as half (with Havoc) of the Queensbridge rap duo Mobb Deep, one of the most celebrated rap groups in the genre’s history. He was a unique and authentic artist, and a storyteller at heart having published a memoir, a crime novel, and even a cookbook (Commissary Kitchen). Mobb Deep is best known for their second album The Infamous, a bona-fide classic and one of hip-hop’s most influential and treasured albums, but the discussion you will come upon in this episode reaches far outside the realms of Prodigy prodigious talents, and deeply into the condition that affected almost every part of his life: from the sound of his rhymes to the circumstances of his death. So dive into an episode that celebrates the life of a truly remarkable individual (“the classic Greek hero” - Mary Harris), and also serves as an eye opening look at race and institutional neglect in medicine.

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    Episode 47: The Osiris Music Podcast

    In the latest episode of Across the Margin: The Podcast, host Michael Shields takes a step back from the typical format that regularly comprises the journeys Beyond The Margin, and once again digs into what it means to be a member of the Osiris Media Group. Osiris is a community of podcasts and podcasters that connects enthusiasts of the arts, culture and music with an eclectic and fascinating array of podcasts and live experiences. In Episode 43, Michael dove into the Arts, Culture and Comedy podcasts of Osiris, and to further round out Beyond The Margin's exploration of the experiences Osiris has to offer, this episode focuses in on the podcasts that are musically inclined, a bevy of offerings that celebrate jazz, indie and psychedelic rock, bluegrass, and more (and unequivocally, Osiris offers the most dynamic and compelling collection of podcasts dedicated to Phish, the Grateful Dead and Ween you will find anywhere)!

    Osiris Media’s specialty, its unparalleled strength, is its music podcasts, and this episode acts as a commemoration of this potency. Packing it in and offering insight into a plethora of Osiris’s library, this episode features micro-interviews with Brad Tenbrook from The Helping Friendly Podcast, the God Ween Evan team (Paul Gutkowski, Katie Hartman, Will Nunziata, and, of course, Evan Kaufman), The Tour’s Ted Canova, Phil Freeman of Burning Ambulance Podcast, Jonathan Hart of Brokedown Podcast, Staci Smith of Strangers Stopping Strangers, Ira Haberman of The Sound Podcast, Rob Turner of Inside Out With Turner & Seth, Brian Brinkman of Beyond The Pond, Dawn Jenkins of Phemale-Centrics, and Harvey Couch of The Bluest Tape. So join in on a sonic journey that goes well Beyond The Margin, and deep into the music-laden world of Osiris!

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    Episode 46: Christian Niedan's Hollywood Interviews

    In the latest episode of Beyond The Margin, host Michael Shields sits with down writer, editor, and film historian Christian Niedan to talk about his recently-concluded, eight part “Hollywood Interview” series published by Across The Margin. From 2009-2014 Christian ran the film interview site Camera In The Sun, and more recently he published interviews with writers, poets, photographers, comedians, and other creatives on the website of Oakland-California-based literary nonprofit, Nomadic Press, for which he also volunteered as an event coordinator for poet/music showcases around Brooklyn. In addition, Christian recently published several serialized works about film and television for the print/online culture publication At Large Magazine, all of which fashion Christian with an unparalleled wealth of knowledge about the film industry. In this episode, the unique Hollywood artists who are the subjects of Christian’s interviews are discussed (L.Q. Jones, Hampton Fancher, Alison Martino, William Lustig, Penelope Spheeris, Walter Mosley, Larry Cohen, and Thom Anderson) and with it listeners are treated to a behind the scenes looks at filmmaking and what has inspired today’s greatest storytellers. So join in on an episode tailor made for film buffs and storytellers of all kinds!

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