title

Transom Podcast

Transom

8
Followers
12
Plays
Transom Podcast
Transom Podcast

Transom Podcast

Transom

8
Followers
12
Plays
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About Us

Transom.org is an experiment in channeling new work and voices to public radio through the internet, and for discussing that work, and encouraging more. Our podcast offers some tasty little audio morsels to go.

Latest Episodes

Two Years With Franz

EThis is a story of art & love, of madness & beauty, of youth & age & death. It took Bianca Giaever 2 years of listening to 546 tapes of Pulitzer-winning Franz Wright to make. Jay Allison guided her. Listen.

55 MIN2018 JUN 5
Comments
Two Years With Franz

Living With Murder

The story of Kempis Songster, who was given a mandatory life sentence without parole for a crime he committed at 15 years old. He is forty-five now, still incarcerated, but recent Supreme Court rulings are giving him a chance at parole. Produced by Samantha Broun and Jay Allison in collaboration with the Frontline Dispatch.

82 MIN2017 DEC 8
Comments
Living With Murder

Preaching To Myself: Five Heretical Sermons In Five Minutes

Editor’s Note: This speech was delivered as a “provocation” on the opening night of the Third Coast International Audio Festival in Chicago, November, 2016. (photo by Jay Allison) I confess I like preaching, but don’t want you to feel preached to, so I claim that these sermons are for me, and they are . . . even when I don’t heed them. They’re heretical in that they’re the opposite of a lot of advice, but they’re some of the things I tell myself when I stray from what feels most abidingly important. Maybe they’re exhortations to stay true to my younger self — not to be as foolish maybe, but to be brave and good-hearted — something that feels more critical than ever in these days. Sermon 1: Don’t Ask Permission You want to get on the air, be on a show, have your story out there — but as you make your pitches, keep something precious in reserve and don’t pitch it. Just make it. Don’t even really plan it or predict what the narrative or sound will be. Just follow it and ...

10 MIN2016 NOV 17
Comments
Preaching To Myself: Five Heretical Sermons In Five Minutes

In Conversation: Jenna Weiss-Berman and Laura Walker

*Editor’s Note: This conversation was recorded on October 25, 2016. Jenna: So let’s start with who are you and what do you do? Laura: I’m Laura Walker, I’m the President and CEO of New York Public Radio. Jenna: And how long have you been here? Laura: Very long. [Laughter] I’ve been here for twenty years. Jenna: Really? Laura: Really. Jenna: What job did you start out doing here? Laura: President and CEO. [Laughter] I came when the board had made a deal with Mayor Guiliani to buy the stations for twenty million dollars. And there were two radio stations and, I think, two reporters. And we, over time, bought the stations and created much stronger radio stations. The Road to WNYC Jenna: And what were you doing before WNYC? Laura: I started out as a print journalist and then I did radio. I worked at NPR for a little bit. I loved editing tape and I loved creating. It is so fun. And then I went to business school, and then did a little consulting, and then I was at Sesame Workshop fo...

32 MIN2016 NOV 8
Comments
In Conversation: Jenna Weiss-Berman and Laura Walker

Thank God I’m A Country Boy

The moment I heard about Jim Salestrom, I knew. Not only was this the story I wanted to do for the Transom Traveling Workshop, but I knew in my gut the story was also about me. I came to the Transom Traveling Workshop with all sorts of notions as to what Good and Bad in audio storytelling means. I’ve been hanging out around these parts for quite a while now. My love affair with, and frankly my need for, this medium as a listener has also opened up something that has grown in me alongside: I want to make stories, too. And I want them to be good. I started to pay attention: Reading about the thing, talking about the thing, gathering equipment for the thing, trying my hand at the thing, taking $15 online classes in the thing, even going so far as to land a fantastic job in the thing…getting to work directly with people who actually DO the thing! I applied for the Transom Traveling Workshop knowing it’s like the Ivy League School of audio storytelling training camp without actually b...

12 MIN2016 SEP 13
Comments
Thank God I’m A Country Boy

Jack And The Bag Of Death

Last fall at the very end of the semester I saw a poster in the hallway of the art school at Virginia Commonwealth University for one of my favorite podcasts, Love and Radio by Nick van der Kolk. It turns out that it wasn’t a poster for the podcast (Do podcasts have posters? They really should!) but rather for a graduate level documentary radio class that van der Kolk was teaching at VCUarts this spring in the Department of Kinetic Imaging. I wished that I was a student again so that I could take his class. It turns out that one of the benefits of working at VCUarts is the ability to take up to two classes per semester tuition free. This January I registered for Nick’s class and took my seat in the classroom as a student rather than as an instructor. I hadn’t been on the student side of a classroom in more than ten years and I worried that I wouldn’t be able to shed the “let me show you how to do that” mentality that comes with ten years of teaching experience. Old Dog, New Tr...

7 MIN2016 JUN 8
Comments
Jack And The Bag Of Death

A Life Sentence: Victims, Offenders, Justice, And My Mother

Revisiting Difficult Things The story of the violent crime my mother survived in the fall of 1994 has never been something I share easily. It’s more something I offer after I’ve really gotten to know someone and feel that there’s something important they need to know about me, about my family. I’m acutely aware of the impact this crime has had on my mother’s life, on our family’s life, and I’ve always had a sense of its larger consequences. I thought if I could tell the story of both the intimate and the public impact, it might be worthwhile. There were a lot of people who warned me this would be hard. And it was. Hardest of all was hearing again the details of what happened to my mother that night. And then hearing them repeatedly as I transcribed our interviews, assembled the script, cut tape, and listened to mixes. I spent many days horizontal on my couch, literally knocked over and out again (nearly 20 years later) by what happened to her. Revisiting difficult topics isn...

54 MIN2016 MAR 2
Comments
A Life Sentence: Victims, Offenders, Justice, And My Mother

In Conversation: Miranda July & Jennifer Brandel

What Miranda July Can Teach (& Remind) Us About Making Media for the Public Admittedly, I over prepared for this interview. Beyond spending many evenings researching and thinking, I also hijacked every one of my hangouts with friends for months, turning brunches and walks into tactical conversations about July’s work and what makes it so compelling and unique. Along the way, it became clear that Miranda July’s work shares much in common with public media’s work. Here’s just a short list of the overlap. Both July and public media makers: * Produce audio / radio / video / films * Publish a newsletter * Make apps * Perform live shows * Sell branded bags for the super fans (July’s is not a tote bag for the farmer’s market, but it has quite a few compelling uses) * Toggle between nonfiction and fiction storytelling * Have a distinct sensibility, so much so that The Onion has had their fun with both July and public radio * Create deep intimacy and empathy with audiences All things w...

48 MIN2016 JAN 20
Comments
In Conversation: Miranda July & Jennifer Brandel

Story Workshop Fall 2015: Pieces

Rob Rosenthal, Lead Instructor Rob Rosenthal …one of the things I love most about my job as lead instructor [is] I have no idea what’s going to happen. From day-to-day, from workshop to workshop… every class is different. The stories are different. Even the style of storytelling is different… Read more. TSW: Class of Fall 2015 “No Flush, No Fuss” by Devika Bakshi Devika Bakshi Follow the good tape. Like a besotted stalker. Like you followed Teju Cole on Twitter. With utter devotion. Read more and listen. “Good Intentions: A Story of Cross-Racial Adoption” by Brenna Daldorph Brenna Daldorph Someone once told me that if you are comfortable during discussions about race, then nothing important is actually being said. I held that close to heart as I worked on this piece… Read more and listen. “An Act Relative To Sex Offenders” by Ciara Gillan Ciara Gillan You’re prepped from the outset that your story may not unfold the way you thought it would. But sometimes, at that very l...

95 MIN2015 DEC 11
Comments
Story Workshop Fall 2015: Pieces

Anatomy Of A Code Blue

A “Code Blue” You’ve seen it on TV. The line on the heart monitor goes flat. Reassuring beeps are overtaken by the ominous, solid tone of death. Doctors come running, throw electric paddles on the chest and yell, “Clear!” The patient springs back to life — most of the time, at least on TV. Yet a “code blue” can also be traumatic. A large nurse throws his entire weight onto the chest of a frail ninety-year old, cracking multiple ribs. A doctor tears off the patient’s gown. Each chest compression launches blood from the patient’s mouth showering his naked body. Drugs upon drugs squeeze blood to vital organs, but when his heart starts again most of his brain may have already died from lack of oxygen. A “code blue” is hospital-speak for advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation. It is an attempt to restart the heart when it has stopped. On television codes are successful 75% of the time. In reality about 20% of patients live to leave the hospital. Whether a code is a magnificen...

28 MIN2015 OCT 14
Comments
Anatomy Of A Code Blue

Latest Episodes

Two Years With Franz

EThis is a story of art & love, of madness & beauty, of youth & age & death. It took Bianca Giaever 2 years of listening to 546 tapes of Pulitzer-winning Franz Wright to make. Jay Allison guided her. Listen.

55 MIN2018 JUN 5
Comments
Two Years With Franz

Living With Murder

The story of Kempis Songster, who was given a mandatory life sentence without parole for a crime he committed at 15 years old. He is forty-five now, still incarcerated, but recent Supreme Court rulings are giving him a chance at parole. Produced by Samantha Broun and Jay Allison in collaboration with the Frontline Dispatch.

82 MIN2017 DEC 8
Comments
Living With Murder

Preaching To Myself: Five Heretical Sermons In Five Minutes

Editor’s Note: This speech was delivered as a “provocation” on the opening night of the Third Coast International Audio Festival in Chicago, November, 2016. (photo by Jay Allison) I confess I like preaching, but don’t want you to feel preached to, so I claim that these sermons are for me, and they are . . . even when I don’t heed them. They’re heretical in that they’re the opposite of a lot of advice, but they’re some of the things I tell myself when I stray from what feels most abidingly important. Maybe they’re exhortations to stay true to my younger self — not to be as foolish maybe, but to be brave and good-hearted — something that feels more critical than ever in these days. Sermon 1: Don’t Ask Permission You want to get on the air, be on a show, have your story out there — but as you make your pitches, keep something precious in reserve and don’t pitch it. Just make it. Don’t even really plan it or predict what the narrative or sound will be. Just follow it and ...

10 MIN2016 NOV 17
Comments
Preaching To Myself: Five Heretical Sermons In Five Minutes

In Conversation: Jenna Weiss-Berman and Laura Walker

*Editor’s Note: This conversation was recorded on October 25, 2016. Jenna: So let’s start with who are you and what do you do? Laura: I’m Laura Walker, I’m the President and CEO of New York Public Radio. Jenna: And how long have you been here? Laura: Very long. [Laughter] I’ve been here for twenty years. Jenna: Really? Laura: Really. Jenna: What job did you start out doing here? Laura: President and CEO. [Laughter] I came when the board had made a deal with Mayor Guiliani to buy the stations for twenty million dollars. And there were two radio stations and, I think, two reporters. And we, over time, bought the stations and created much stronger radio stations. The Road to WNYC Jenna: And what were you doing before WNYC? Laura: I started out as a print journalist and then I did radio. I worked at NPR for a little bit. I loved editing tape and I loved creating. It is so fun. And then I went to business school, and then did a little consulting, and then I was at Sesame Workshop fo...

32 MIN2016 NOV 8
Comments
In Conversation: Jenna Weiss-Berman and Laura Walker

Thank God I’m A Country Boy

The moment I heard about Jim Salestrom, I knew. Not only was this the story I wanted to do for the Transom Traveling Workshop, but I knew in my gut the story was also about me. I came to the Transom Traveling Workshop with all sorts of notions as to what Good and Bad in audio storytelling means. I’ve been hanging out around these parts for quite a while now. My love affair with, and frankly my need for, this medium as a listener has also opened up something that has grown in me alongside: I want to make stories, too. And I want them to be good. I started to pay attention: Reading about the thing, talking about the thing, gathering equipment for the thing, trying my hand at the thing, taking $15 online classes in the thing, even going so far as to land a fantastic job in the thing…getting to work directly with people who actually DO the thing! I applied for the Transom Traveling Workshop knowing it’s like the Ivy League School of audio storytelling training camp without actually b...

12 MIN2016 SEP 13
Comments
Thank God I’m A Country Boy

Jack And The Bag Of Death

Last fall at the very end of the semester I saw a poster in the hallway of the art school at Virginia Commonwealth University for one of my favorite podcasts, Love and Radio by Nick van der Kolk. It turns out that it wasn’t a poster for the podcast (Do podcasts have posters? They really should!) but rather for a graduate level documentary radio class that van der Kolk was teaching at VCUarts this spring in the Department of Kinetic Imaging. I wished that I was a student again so that I could take his class. It turns out that one of the benefits of working at VCUarts is the ability to take up to two classes per semester tuition free. This January I registered for Nick’s class and took my seat in the classroom as a student rather than as an instructor. I hadn’t been on the student side of a classroom in more than ten years and I worried that I wouldn’t be able to shed the “let me show you how to do that” mentality that comes with ten years of teaching experience. Old Dog, New Tr...

7 MIN2016 JUN 8
Comments
Jack And The Bag Of Death

A Life Sentence: Victims, Offenders, Justice, And My Mother

Revisiting Difficult Things The story of the violent crime my mother survived in the fall of 1994 has never been something I share easily. It’s more something I offer after I’ve really gotten to know someone and feel that there’s something important they need to know about me, about my family. I’m acutely aware of the impact this crime has had on my mother’s life, on our family’s life, and I’ve always had a sense of its larger consequences. I thought if I could tell the story of both the intimate and the public impact, it might be worthwhile. There were a lot of people who warned me this would be hard. And it was. Hardest of all was hearing again the details of what happened to my mother that night. And then hearing them repeatedly as I transcribed our interviews, assembled the script, cut tape, and listened to mixes. I spent many days horizontal on my couch, literally knocked over and out again (nearly 20 years later) by what happened to her. Revisiting difficult topics isn...

54 MIN2016 MAR 2
Comments
A Life Sentence: Victims, Offenders, Justice, And My Mother

In Conversation: Miranda July & Jennifer Brandel

What Miranda July Can Teach (& Remind) Us About Making Media for the Public Admittedly, I over prepared for this interview. Beyond spending many evenings researching and thinking, I also hijacked every one of my hangouts with friends for months, turning brunches and walks into tactical conversations about July’s work and what makes it so compelling and unique. Along the way, it became clear that Miranda July’s work shares much in common with public media’s work. Here’s just a short list of the overlap. Both July and public media makers: * Produce audio / radio / video / films * Publish a newsletter * Make apps * Perform live shows * Sell branded bags for the super fans (July’s is not a tote bag for the farmer’s market, but it has quite a few compelling uses) * Toggle between nonfiction and fiction storytelling * Have a distinct sensibility, so much so that The Onion has had their fun with both July and public radio * Create deep intimacy and empathy with audiences All things w...

48 MIN2016 JAN 20
Comments
In Conversation: Miranda July & Jennifer Brandel

Story Workshop Fall 2015: Pieces

Rob Rosenthal, Lead Instructor Rob Rosenthal …one of the things I love most about my job as lead instructor [is] I have no idea what’s going to happen. From day-to-day, from workshop to workshop… every class is different. The stories are different. Even the style of storytelling is different… Read more. TSW: Class of Fall 2015 “No Flush, No Fuss” by Devika Bakshi Devika Bakshi Follow the good tape. Like a besotted stalker. Like you followed Teju Cole on Twitter. With utter devotion. Read more and listen. “Good Intentions: A Story of Cross-Racial Adoption” by Brenna Daldorph Brenna Daldorph Someone once told me that if you are comfortable during discussions about race, then nothing important is actually being said. I held that close to heart as I worked on this piece… Read more and listen. “An Act Relative To Sex Offenders” by Ciara Gillan Ciara Gillan You’re prepped from the outset that your story may not unfold the way you thought it would. But sometimes, at that very l...

95 MIN2015 DEC 11
Comments
Story Workshop Fall 2015: Pieces

Anatomy Of A Code Blue

A “Code Blue” You’ve seen it on TV. The line on the heart monitor goes flat. Reassuring beeps are overtaken by the ominous, solid tone of death. Doctors come running, throw electric paddles on the chest and yell, “Clear!” The patient springs back to life — most of the time, at least on TV. Yet a “code blue” can also be traumatic. A large nurse throws his entire weight onto the chest of a frail ninety-year old, cracking multiple ribs. A doctor tears off the patient’s gown. Each chest compression launches blood from the patient’s mouth showering his naked body. Drugs upon drugs squeeze blood to vital organs, but when his heart starts again most of his brain may have already died from lack of oxygen. A “code blue” is hospital-speak for advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation. It is an attempt to restart the heart when it has stopped. On television codes are successful 75% of the time. In reality about 20% of patients live to leave the hospital. Whether a code is a magnificen...

28 MIN2015 OCT 14
Comments
Anatomy Of A Code Blue
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