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The Soul of California

Let them share.....That's the goal. Let the leading thinkers, writers, academics, artists and activists talk about their work and the influence of California on that work. In these podcasts, I hope to bring out the myth and the ethos that is not only a leading administrative entity in the United States, but also the world. No commercials, just content. Keep listening.
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Now displaying: June, 2016
Jun 19, 2016

As California enters the 21st Century, it is in real need of a “Re-Coding” - making it ready to maintain its Top 10 global economic position. UCLA Institute for the Environment and Sustainability's Jon Christensen discusses this "Re-Coding", the importance of not only financial muscle and political will, but also cultural adjustment, particularly in light of climate change. With an ageing hardware/infrastructure, software in the form of new policies and a change in behaviour are required. Jon also reflects on how Governor Jerry Brown has changed, leading the charge on climate change and also reveals which piece of infrastructure should be done away (hint - it’s several hundred miles long).

In this 41-minutes podcast, we also discuss the lasting power of the UK’s Reyner Banham, the guru of architecture critics, and his seminal book, Los Angeles - The Architecture of Four Ecologies (min. 21). Jon also touches on the Friends of the LA River and Frank Gehry’s proposal for the river (min. 27).

The interview concludes with the challenges of gentrification (min. 31), how LA can learn from San Francisco about creating and maintaining networks (min. 35) and Jon’s favourite place in and book about California.

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In July's podcast, modern design duo Charles and Ray Eames with scholar Daniel Ostroff.   

Jun 3, 2016

The city of Bakersfield served as an unlikely centre of a new kind of country music, one tinged with electricity, which catapulted musicians Buck Owens and Merle Haggard to international acclaim. 

We take a different approach for this show and interview a practitioner - Dallas Good of the Toronto-based Sadies. The Sadies have cross-polinated a number of styles, creating their own unique brand of contemporary music, which draws upon 60s garage rock, psychedelia, surf, roots and of course country. The Sadies have collaborated with the likes of Neko Case, Andre Williams, John Doe and Neil Young. 

In this 12-minute podcast, Good discusses the influence of musicians Merle Haggard and Buck Owens. He also reflects on the importance of the Fender Telecaster and Mosrite guitars in the music, and pays homage to Don Rich, Roy Nichols and Clarence White of the Byrds and to the lesser-known session player Alvino Ray, considered to be the father of the pedal steel guitar. The interview fades out with a portion of the song “The Trial” from The Sadies.  

Next episode, "Re-Coding California" - urban development and its challenges in the Golden State with UCLA's Jon Christensen. 

Thanks for listening, subscribing and sharing. 

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