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Major David Hughes serves as Chief of Professional Standards at the Newport News Sheriff’s Office in Virginia. After nearly falling victim to his own local police culture, and then spending years considering its systemic issues, Major Hughes simply was not willing to keep silent after the killing of George Floyd. He sat down and penned a stunning o…
 
In the wake of murder of George Floyd, and the national outcry that has followed, Branan and Anson discuss the importance of listening and taking accountability. Yes, this is two white guys trying, very clumsily, to talk about racial justice in our nation. We ask for your patience because this is, embarrassingly, a little new for us. The documentar…
 
Jack Hitt is an American author. He is a contributing editor to Harper’s, The New York Times Magazine, and This American Life. In this episode Jack sits down with Anson and Branan to look into their crystal balls and speculate upon what a post-corona world may look like, Jack suggests a John Prine song as our new national anthem and Branan is attac…
 
Jonathan Meiburg (from TWP004 and TWP005) returns as our first ever return guest. We check in with Jonathan who is staying very productive under lockdown producing two albums for his two bands SHEARWATER and LOMA while editing his first book about the evolution of his favorite South American raptor – the striated caracara. Among other topics discus…
 
In our new segment, we’re calling folks to see what they’re doing to stay creative during the coronavirus lockdown. Brad Paisley kicks us off by telling us about how his charitable, free grocery THE STORE was open only two days when the virus took hold in the US. Now he’s figuring out how to get the food TO the people who need it. You can find out …
 
Anson and Branan come to you straight from Anson’s Connecticut property where they are literally quarantined from one another. Join us for a deep dive into the history of pandemics and the mystery of viruses. You can find out more about Carl Zimmer and his book “A Planet of Viruses” here. You can see the preview for the film “The One I Love” (2014)…
 
Anson shares stories from his trip to Portugal. Branan and Anson share what’s making them excited in the worlds of film, TV, books and podcasts. Anson pours some port and Branan tells the amazing story of “The Port Loophole”. NOTE: Listen and find out how you can become a co-producer of an upcoming episode (which involves helping him to not die on …
 
Michael and Anson go back a while, but it’s also been a minute since they’ve seen each other. Two friends analyze the odd truths that come with age; then Michael discusses his relationship to fear, and how meeting that fear head-on through music has led him to greater growth and happiness. You can find Left on Laurel’s first album “Saved By The Gro…
 
Branan shares his adventures in Greece, he and Anson share what they’re reading and listening to this autumn season, and they catch up with Leon “The Martini Samurai” Ingulsrud. If you’d like to learn more about the Greek island of Delos, there are many resources on line including this article and the Delos museum website. Dr. Robert Sapolsky’s boo…
 
We did it! We have a title for our weird little, between-season installments. Thanks to Mee Chang and to Bogdan Orlic for helping us find it! Mentioned in this episode: Sebadoh’s official site can be found here. You can order “A Canticle for Lebowitz” here. And you can learn more about Walter M. Miller, Jr. here. You can order “The Animal Dialogues…
 
Anson asks Branan to delve into his father’s mysterious past, a request which leads our hosts into a discussion about aging, the vagaries of the unconscious, and the incredible power of responsibility. Now call your dad. Episode links: Radiolab’s amazing episode “What’s Up, Doc?” Travel Light by Jason Shaw is provided via a Creative Commons 3.0 Att…
 
Many years ago, Anson saw a photograph on Jake’s wall. It was a young Mick Jagger sitting next to an eight year old boy. When Anson asked if the boy was Jake’s younger self, he only got a one word answer: “Yeah.” Fifteen years later, Jake finally shares the story of how that photograph came to be on his wall and the heartbreaking childhood surround…
 
Our species cannot comprehend the time and distances inherent in interstellar communication. But noone understands this conundrum better than astrobiologist Douglas Vakoch. A year and a half after our first interview we catch up with his METI project to find out what it is like to dedicate one’s life to the longest term project in the history of hu…
 
Melissa McCracken is a painter living in a parallel dimension to ours: her synesthesia fills her world with colors and other atypical sensory experiences. She tries to explain what this world is like and in doing so reminds us all of the importance of communication, tolerance and patience. Please take a moment to review her work here: www.melissasm…
 
Most people know Alice Cooper as the original Shock Rocker and a foundational pillar in the house of Metal. But few know that his journey into sobriety involved replacing one addiction with a new and more healthy one: golf. At 71 years of age, having played more courses than almost anyone alive, Cooper still plays 6 days a week and once even consid…
 
Actor Doug Jones talks about how it feels to be the muse for our culture’s most influential monster maker, Guillermo del Toro. Music in this week’s episode: The Cemetery by Sinqlogue provided via a Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution license. Worky Worky by Andy G. Cohen provided via a Creative Commons 4.0 Attribution license. Tennessee Hayride by Jas…
 
Doug Jones envisioned an acting career playing the wacky neighbor in sitcoms, but his career had other plans. In this episode Doug shares war stories from his life as a creature performer, including an incident where he accidently maimed fellow actor Randy Quaid. Music for this episode: Workdaze by Nctmm provided via a Creative Commons 4.0license. …
 
What would you think if someone told you that you were about to meet your idol? How would you prepare? What would you wear? What would you say? Illeana shares a hilarious and heartwarming story about finding herself in exactly this situation when, one day, she realized she would be meeting Marlon Brando. And Branan shares a story about his own (rat…
 
Illeana Douglas wasn’t always a movie star, but her life has always been strangely intertwined with the American cinema. In fact, long before she knew she wanted to act, her life was forever changed when her parents saw the 1969’s indie “Easy Rider” and decided it was time to become hippies. Join us as we hear Illeana explain how her conservative, …
 
Writer/Producer Todd Komarnicki is a man of profound love and profound faith. Both have served his pursuits as an artist. Join Anson & Branan as they venture deep into a Christmas story that took them over a year to unearth: how Todd once lost his faith, and in-so-doing, almost lost his life. Happy holidays to one and all.…
 
Anson and Branan recap the first season of The Well Podcast and talk about plans for season 2. Also, Anson talks about filming “Star Trek: Discovery” and what it’s like to join the larger Star Trek family. Oh… Anson Branan his a tree with his truck. Enjoy, and don’t forget to sign up for our mailing list on our website. We’ll be sending updates via…
 
Playfulness is it at the heart of the creative process and it can take many surprising forms. Lou Barlow has been playing with his sound, his process and his ideas since he was a kid. In this episode of THE WELL we look at the importance of staying loose and indulging in play. Music from this episode in order of appearance: Up From the Well You Fel…
 
Lou Barlow is one of our generations most unique and prolific singer songwriters. In this episode he reflects upon his resistance to identity as a songwriter and performer. He shares what drives him as a writer and how it feels after 20 years to be playing with J Mascis in Dinosaur Jr again. To see the last known photo of Ray, the Day Kitty, go her…
 
Lou Barlow’s creative output goes by many names, Sebadoh, Dinosaur Jr., Folk Implosion, Sentridoh, and Loobiecore. Throughout his career he’s carved out a niche for himself as a the unofficial godfather of low-fi folk music and/or emo. For some he is the Bob Dylan of the alternative music scene; uninhibited, brutally honest, sensitive and a touch a…
 
Ward may have invented the pinscreen, but just because someone made something doesn’t someone else won’t be happy to take all the credit. This is the story of an inventor and his imposter, and how one man had to fight off a swarm of people looking to profit off of his life’s work. Enjoy. Additional music for this episode was provided by Podington B…
 
Artist and inventor Ward Fleming invented one of the most famous and lucrative toys of the last fifty years. But it was only one step in a personal research project that has spanned the majority of Ward’s life, with implications that extend deep into molecular activity and even deep into the heart of Jupiter. Enjoy! Extra music for this episode was…
 
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