Passion Pod

Passion Pod

An inspirational storytelling experience featuring unique guests that are also pursuing their passions.

All Episodes

Our mutual friend Ashwin Jacob introduced me to Greg a while back so I was stoked to finally make this interview happen last time that I was recording in Los Angeles. Greg and I kicked it for a good while that night. He offered me food and even let me crash on the couch. I have a huge appreciation for people that are genuine and want to help others simply out of kindness. Needless to say this turned out to be one of my favorite interviews. Greg grew up in Boston before eventually taking a chance on an opportunity to move out to California years ago. From cleaning dorm rooms to charting the billboards, his story is an inspiring one. Before the pandemic he was traveling all over the world performing. As I man at high risk, everything had to shutdown and change. What has he been up to since? I guess you’ll have to tune in to find out…

Nov 8

1 hr 6 min

I reached out to alumni @markusshields before my last trip out to Los Angeles to see if he had any cool friends that might be down to hop on the show as a guest. He really came through for me and made two introductions for me including introducing me to the lovely Mikaila Murphy aka @mikailadancer . Mikaila grew up in the midwest, but eventually found her way out to Los Angeles to pursue her dance career. She started dancing at the age of 3, and has built a massive following of over 12 million followers on TikTok for a reason. It's obvious if you just check out her accounts. I feel like a lot of people come across as pretty fake on social media, but that really isn't what works and isn't how she has built her career. What is makes Mikaila so cool is how relatable and honest she is. Her videos are technically impressive, but also just really fun to watch. Her personality in real life was exactly what you would think after following her. She's bubbly, friendly, and smarter than I think most people give her credit for. She has an extremely bright future and I'm happy to shine a little more light on her journey so far.

Nov 1

41 min 43 sec

This week I walked a couple of blocks to my friend Steve Hampton's new storefront that is opening soon. Steve has built up his own businesses since he was young. Social media pages, youtube channels, you name it. This past year Steve was finally able to take his business full time. While he has done the vast majority of his sales online so far, he rented a strorefront close to my shop to finally start helping people face to face. Not only did we record this episode there, but I also painted a 1- foot tall mural that you are gunna want to see once his doors officially open. There are a ton of CBD retailers these days, but Steve stands out as one of the best. His sleep gummies are the reason that I wake up ready to take on my days. Along with this episode we are releasing collaborative tinctures of 1000mg Delta 8 for you all to try. I'm super proud of how far this man has come since we met and I'm stoked to be able to share his story with you.

Oct 25

1 hr 17 min

This week I welcomed some slithery little friends into my home. This week's episode features a local python breeder. Justin started out by rescuing and rehoming reptiles, but originally stayed away from snakes entirely. In fact, he was terrified of them from a young age until a friend brought one over and convinced him to hold it. The next day Justin ordered his first snake and has been hooked ever since. I'm not sure how well I would sleep with 40 plus snakes in my home.

Oct 18

1 hr 12 min

This week I met up with Javan, a rapper and skateboarder originally from the east coast. His music had just started to really pop off right before the pandemic hit. When challenges pop up, usually different opportunities open up as well if you look for them. Javan took advantage of the time and decided to move out to Los Angeles to pursue his music career and has already established himself in the scene. He’s part of an up and coming group called Deathproof full of other music artists and skateboarders. Expect to see their names more and more in the coming years. Fresh off his most recent tour, he’s ready to make his mark on the world. His journey is gunna be a fun one to follow.

Oct 11

48 min 12 sec

This week we travelled to Hollywood California to meet with someone everyone has seen, but might not yet know. Courtney started gymnastics at the age of 3. By 7 she was already in competitions. As the years went by and the dream of the olympics started to disappear, it was time to figure out a direction. She became a cheerleader and started applying to Ivy League schools. Despite a 4.0, she didn’t get accepted to any of them. Instead she attended college in Hawaii and started doing work in promotions. When a video of her twerking at a party went viral online, she realized that there were actually competitions for that. Naturally, her competitive spirits led her in that unique direction. Fast forward to today, and she now lives in Hollywood working as a dancer in music videos, a social media influenced, and teaches twerk classes all over the country. Don’t worry, we’ll tell the whole story behind her being featured in one of the most watched music videos of all time too. This interview lined up by random chance and I didn’t know what to expect. Courtney is a sweetheart and an incredibly hardworking and highly intelligent individual. There is a lot more to her story than just the viral videos of her shaking her booty. Tune in and find out 🤙

Oct 4

44 min 42 sec

This week we travelled to Hollywood, CA to meet up with a singer, dancer, songwriter, producer, designer, style king, and overall really cool human. James Barmore has sang for major artists like John Legend and Chance the Rapper, but has been putting most of his focus on making his own music over the last few years. While I've had some really established guests from the music world, James is really just getting starting. In fact, when I interviewed him he had just gotten off his overnight shift at his regular job and took a bus to meet with me. It's not all sunshine and roses when you're out there just trying to make it. With a voice and presence like his, it won't be long before he blows up. Just check out his brand new EP "Lavender".

Sep 27

51 min 49 sec

This week we welcomed a local youtube sensation to the show. Sven Johnson is a 21 year old college student in my hometown that has blown up over the last couple of years. Partially in thanks to some help from his older brother Gus, who has an even larger youtube audience (3.4M) and currently lives in LA doing a lot of work with Comedy Central, Sven has already built a subscriber count of over 600k. After listening to this interview, you're going to want to subscribe as well. Some people just have something special about them, Sven is one of these rare breeds. Tune in and hear how he started, broke his mom's ceiling light for views, and set himself up for the epic adventure of life that is waiting for him when he graduates.

Sep 20

54 min 40 sec

This week we travelled to Venice beach, CA to chat with professional skateboarder Blake Johnson. Blake is a California native, but has been living in Barcelona since before the pandemic started. I was pretty lucky to have caught him while he was back visiting for a few weeks. Tune in and hear about his skateboarding journey, his passion for food, and what it was like being in a foreign country while everything shut down.

Sep 13

1 hr 5 min

This week we travelled to Los Angeles, CA to hang out with Grammy award winning songwriter Dave Yaden. He welcomed me into his home with him and his son Wolfgang to talk about life, music, business minds, and a whole lot more. Dave is certainly a performer and a genuine character of a man, but in the best possible way. Tune in and find out why people call him a Techno Viking, and Cowboy Jedi, and so much more. He also drops some serious gems of knowledge that you’re gunna wanna hear.

Sep 6

1 hr 15 min

Maestro Harrell and I couldn’t have had much more of a different upbringing which made this conversation incredibly interesting and enjoyable for me. Maestro has been in the public eye virtually his entire life. His parents had him taking piano lessons as a toddler, and he already had a major role on the tv show “Guys like us” at the age of 7. He’s originally from Chicago, but due to his early success in entertainment he’s been flying all over the world his whole life. He’s arguably known most as the character “Randy” from his years working on the hit tv show “The Wire”, but he’s a hell of a lot more than that. Just check out his Wikipedia page to find his very long list of credentials including putting out several rap albums, producing others work, making music for commercials, and designing clothing. Despite having such a different lifestyle, we really connected and this is one of my favorite episodes I’ve done so far. Maestro is such a down to earth, open minded, and kind individual. Give this a listen now. You can thank me later.

Aug 30

1 hr 11 min

This week we welcomed a budding star to the show. Sawyer Brice is currently a student at UWEC right here in my home town, yet he is already making big moves and has worked with a ton of big names in the music industry. I meet people once in a while that I can just tell are going to blow up. Sawyer is one of those people. His journey is gunna be fun to watch.

Aug 23

1 hr 21 min

I spent the first week of May staying in penthouse in Hollywood. Over 5 days I was able to record 9 episodes of season 6. The last one I recorded was with Myles. I didn't have plans to interview him. I didn't even know who he was until I arrived. Myles Hass is a very interesting entrepreneur. It was his place that I was crashing at. Remember that movie "Magic Mike"? Yeah, they stole that name from Myles's company Magic Men. Myles is originally from Detroit, and built himself an empire. For the last handful of years Myles and his "Magic Men" have been traveling the world as the biggest ladies night the world has ever seen. Then the pandemic hit. Nothing can stop this guy. Seriously, I can honestly say that I sat with him and watched him spend 12 or more hours a day working on his computer learning and building a new branch of his business. Around the same time I started my show, Myles started his own called the "Stripped Down" podcast. If you haven't heard of it yet, you will. Go check it out after you listen to this.

Aug 16

1 hr 9 min

Johnny Rapp aka "J Rapp" is a humble, caring, successful, and incredibly interesting human. Some might refer to him as a social media genius, but I'd call him a helper of people. J Rapp found a love, interest, and home in the social media world growing up. His perspective is like none I've ever heard. To him, the idea of being able to be anyone or anything through a simple profile was extremely enticing. He built and managed accounts with millions of followers while still in high school. The really interesting thing to me is, that he did all of this without anyone really knowing who he was. He never wanted the notoriety or attention personally. Of course, this incredibly useful skill he developed eventually had him working behind the scenes with all kinds of super wealthy and famous individuals, but he still prefers to be in the background. In fact, his company J Rapp Media is much more focused on helping the little guy these days. This is one of my favorite episodes to date. We became instant friends recording this. You can expect to see more collab works in the future. Meet my friend J Rapp.

Aug 9

1 hr 15 min

Kym Kral is a so called funny lady. I had to go find out for myself. We met up in Hollywood, but she's just a transplant like so many others in that city. Kym has the best vibes which made this conversation one of my favorites I've ever done. Her journey from cheesy dating shows, to stand up comedy, to starting her podcast, to writing her first book is one you're gunna want to hear.

Aug 2

1 hr 15 min

Markus Shields has travelled the world as a backup dancer and choreographer for countless big acts. I’ve obviously seen backup dancers on t.v. before, but I never really put much thought into how someone even goes down that path. Markus shares his story of growing up in the Midwest, finding his calling, and carving out an unlikely path. He even shares his new passion for creating music with us which he discovered during the pandemic. It’s never too late to try new things.

Jul 12

51 min 17 sec

David Cannava grew up in Colorado Springs, but has lived in L.A. for about 8 years already. David is a drummer, artist, entrepreneur, director, and all around creative. You can find a ton of his music on youtube under his stage name "Mad in the Hat" drums. Since the pandemic however, he has transitioned towards a different career. Along with some others, David is the owner of Create This L.A. studio. It would probably easier for you to understand what it is if ya go check them out on Instagram. They recently did a music video for Maroon 5, so you can expect it to be pretty cool. Hard work always pay off. This is all the proof ya need.

Jul 5

1 hr 2 min

Stefano Langone popped onto the scene as a contestant on season 10 of American Idol. Many of us are aware that tv shows never really tell the real story. Tune in and hear his story a bit more in his words. His career is a bit of a roller coaster of ups and downs. We were super lucky to have caught Stefano when we did. A few months prior he had lost his voice, had career saving surgery, and had to be completely silent for several months. On the mend, with his voice better than ever, he agreed to record this conversation.

Jun 28

44 min 51 sec

This week we travelled to Hollywood California to meet with one of the world’s premier personal chefs. Chef Andre Sickinger hails from Sydney Australia and has lived and cooked all over the world for everyone including celebs like Jessica Simpson, Eddie Murphy, Robert Downy JR., royalty, and the elite. Tune in to hear stories from growing up, becoming a chef, traveling the world, meeting incredible people, and living the “James Bond” lifestyle. This one is a bit longer, but still not nearly long enough. Enjoy.

Jun 21

1 hr 33 min

I was in another room recording another episode for season 6 when Gwen came by the penthouse I was staying at to shoot with @visualdirt . I finished the interview and when I came into the living area we immediately started chatting. Gwen is incredibly friendly and was super excited to hear about my show since she had just began her own podcasting journey. Sometimes things are just meant to happen. Luckily our schedules were able to line up the following day for her to come on the show. You don't get over a million Instagram followers just from being pretty. Gwen has an amazing story, and it's just beginning.

Jun 7

46 min 44 sec

Lamorne is arguably the coolest guest I've had so far. I was beyond stoked to be welcomed into his home to hang out and record one of my favorite episodes to date. Lamorne wasn't handed anything. After growing up in Chicago, he had quite the journey. Don't let his success fool you. Tune in and hear how he went from being homeless to a household name while staying humble and grounded.

May 31

1 hr 6 min

Garrett Galvin aka @FishinGarrett lives life with no fear. He has over 1 million followers on TikTok for a reason. The videos he posts playing with massive snakes, alligators, fish, and all kinds of Florida wildlife are captivating to say the least. Go check it out and you'll understand why. This was his first podcast interview. After seeing the short videos, you're gunna want to hear his stories.

May 24

1 hr 8 min

Ashwin came to L.A. with virtually nothing but a dream. Through hard work, a positive attitude, and building relationships, he's made an incredible life for himself. Now, he wants to do the same for others. Tune in and learn some seriously helpful stuff.

May 17

46 min 29 sec

This week we travelled to Hudson, WI to kick it with the owners of a super cool new brewery. Justin and Brian welcomed me in with open arms and gave me a full tour of their spot. I highly recommend you check it out if you're ever in their area. Brewing and selling beer is an art of its own. Cheers to new friends!

May 10

1 hr 27 min

This week we travelled to Minneapolis to meet with a lady of many faces. Midnight Mary has been a personal friend of mine for years, so I was really excited to finally have her on as a guest. I knew she was good at cosplay, but over 300k tiktok followers good? I guess I didn’t realize how amazing my friend was this whole time.

May 3

51 min 3 sec

This week our guest drove from his studio in Minneapolis to my home to discuss the flavors of life. Drew Kinkade was going to college for architecture before dropping out to pursue his brand Flavorworld full time. I tell people often that in order to build a business you have to make sacrifices and go all in. Drew is a prime example of this. With just a mattress in the corner of his warehouse printing/art studio, he has fully immersed himself in art and business. Be ready, Flavorworld is gunna blow up.

Apr 26

57 min 40 sec

This week we travelled to Los Angeles to meet up with a master of his craft. Cameron Davis has been in the Photography game for a long time. He started at the bottom like most of us. He worked at Wendy's to earn enough money to buy his first beat up car, but through consistent hard work over the years he's become a very respected individual in his industry earning a bit more comfortable of a living. Cameron is an incredibly intelligent and well spoken individual with a ton of useful knowledge to share. We could all learn more than one thing from this one.

Apr 19

1 hr 30 min

This week we travelled to Los Angeles to link up with a rising star in the art world. Isaac Pelayo is a bit of an art prodigy that is just now really hitting his stride and gaining notoriety. Isaac is most notably known for his oil paintings, in which Diddy is a collector, but also has made significant moves in tattooing, modeling, and rapping. At only 24, you can expect big things from this man in the coming years. Oh yeah, he's also super down to earth and a real homie.

Apr 12

1 hr 27 min

This week we traveled to Estero Florida to visit the home of a world renown illusionist. Wayne Hoffman has been featured on Ellen Degeneres and just about every major television network throughout his career. He grew up learning magic and performing for small parties before attending college to learn Psychology. With what he learned about the brain, he was able to combine magic and psychology to become what he calls a Mentalist. For more than a decade he has been performing and traveling all over the world. His stories are unbelievable.

Apr 5

1 hr 19 min

This week we took an Uber to downtown Hollywood to sit on a rooftop with a very accomplished man in the entertainment industry. Scott Lipps has a life story that could easily be turned into a movie. Scott is the owner of Lipps Agency, which represents names like Cardi B, Doja Cat, Da Baby, David Guetta, and more. He has his own talk show "Lipps Service" with guests like Randy Jackson and Tommy Hilfiger. Oh yeah, he also performs with Courtney Love as her tour drummer. Like I said, his story could be a movie. Shoutout to @visualdirt for making this connection

Mar 29

54 min 19 sec

This week we travelled to Los Angeles to hang out with a pretty incredible human. Louis Carreon welcomed us into his studio and shared some stories from his life. From growing up chasing The Grateful Dead around the country, to serving time in prison, to becoming a celebrated artist in L.A., Louis has been on a wild journey. Everyone has a different path. You're going to want to hear this one.

Mar 15

43 min 56 sec

This week we drove out to Minneapolis to chat with a real up and comer. Leighton Heegaard is a singer/model/actor that is living and working out in Los Angeles, but grew up in Minneapolis. We were lucky enough to catch her while she was back home visiting family for the holidays.

Mar 8

35 min 55 sec

This week we hung out with another new business owner in downtown Eau Claire. Meredith Kervin Blankenheim recently took ownership of Forage EC. Since then, the business has changed drastically. Taking advantage of the time we all had to shut down, she moved Forage EC to a new location downtown and made some big moves and changes for the business. When things go back to "normal", you can expect to find me down there pretty often... This episode is brought to you by Downtown Eau Claire Inc. (DECI)

Mar 1

41 min 7 sec

This week we travelled to Minneapolis Minnesota to sit with pro snowboarder Joe Sexton. Joe has been in the game for years, but more recently started his own snowboard brand with some friends. Public snowboards are now sold all over the world and Joe has been doing his best to keep up. He's learned a lot about business in the meantime.

Feb 22

54 min 10 sec

This week we have another Eau Claire native on the show. Alicia Hash’s Art used to be an “afterthought” activity just for fun. These days it has become her full time career. Her creations from resin are something you really need to see to fully understand. Listen, get inspired, and go create something yourself!

Feb 15

36 min 28 sec

Our guest this week grew up in Eau Claire, but now resides and works in the Minneapolis area. I first met him more than 10 years ago at the skatepark and was able to watch him blossom into a very talented artist and graphic designer. Art and business can indeed go hand in hand.

Feb 8

46 min 15 sec

This week we caught up with an old classmate. Savannah and I graduated high school together in 2008, but really haven't kept in contact all that much. Since then, she has travelled all over the world creating and performing music. More recently she moved back to Eau Claire and is now co owner of 7 Suns Vintage store downtown. Tune in and hear us catch up and share stories.

Feb 1

53 min 26 sec

This week we sat down and chatted with our friend and fellow Eau Claire business owner, Navontay Wilson. Navontay opened Premium Blendz Barber Lounge not long before the pandemic hit, but he hasn't let that get in the way of his success. What a time to start your first business venture.

Jan 25

44 min 24 sec

This week we welcomed a new downtown business owner with a bit of a plant obsession. Don't worry, I mean that in a good way. Chris Buske recently opened Eau Claire's premier CBD and wellness shop called Wonders of Nature. I hope you enjoy this conversation about business, wellness, and growth.

Jan 18

52 min 31 sec

This week we traveled to Minnesota to talk with St. Paul rap sensation Cashinova about his life, career, and new album “High Speed Cash”

Jan 11

52 min 42 sec

This week we made sure to sit at least 6 feet away from our guest Aaron Krueger. I've know Krueger for years so it was about time I had him on the show. Krueger has been a tattooer for a long time and a few years back decided to go off on his own and opened his own place called Krueger Tattoo Studio with his wife. Covid-19 has been tough on small businesses, but it seems like nothing can shake this man's optimism.

Oct 2020

55 min 20 sec

This week our guest has the most beautiful singing voice I've ever personally heard. Naalia and her brother combine on this episode to talk music, diversity, and how they are navigating their blossoming success during such strange times.

Oct 2020

54 min 44 sec

This week we welcomed co owner of Soul Brewed Coffee Troy Hoyt. Troy and his wife are living a unique and quiet life on peaceful acres outside of Fall Creek, WI. Entrepreneurship is often not a money driven career path. In their case, it's about living the life they want to live and enjoying every moment to the fullest.

Sep 2020

45 min 59 sec

This week we were lucky enough to have our friends Jess and Adam Gardner as guests on the show. Jess created Hello Adorn years back from nothing. Through years of work and her husband Adam joining her along the way, they have grown Hello Adorn into a thriving company with limitless potential. I'm so glad to have met this power couple.

Sep 2020

1 hr 4 min

This week we had a great conversation with one of the most involved entrepreneurs in Eau Claire. Benny Haas is most known as the owner of my personal favorite bar, The Plus, but also owns The Rev and The Metro among others. The art and music scene have grown a lot in my hometown thanks to these venues.

Sep 2020

43 min 12 sec

Serena Wagner is the founder and owner of Eau Claire's very own downtown Queer shop. Odd Humyns is unique to say the least, but so incredibly welcoming. The world would be a much better place if we could all be so open minded.

Sep 2020

45 min 6 sec

This week;s guest went from inmate to entrepreneur. Chapin aka "Skotty Benz" turned his life around and now keeps a full schedule with family, his barbershop, music, and his clothing company "People Suck Apparel".

Aug 2020

51 min 48 sec

This week's guest is a second generation candle maker. She always imagined growing up to be someone that helps others. Making a custom scent for the show made me real happy at least!

Aug 2020

34 min 24 sec

This week we sat down with our youngest guest so far. Darton Weavor is an Eau Claire native that started traveling the country capturing collegiate sports content while still in high school. At only 19, his future is exceptionally bright.

Aug 2020

1 hr 1 min

On a trip out to California we made a stop to sight see in beautiful San Fransisco. We were lucky enough to get the chance to sit down with co owner of Create Skateboards Chris Martinez. Chris and his son had very recently opened their very own storefront just off of the heavily walked Market Street. Father and son making dreams come true makes for a pretty good story right?

Aug 2020

50 min 46 sec