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Rock 'n' Roll Grad School

Heidi Hedquist/Luke Poling

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Does the world really need another music podcast? Yes, it needs this one.Rock ‘n’ Roll Grad School brings audiences along on a ride that feels like a late-night conversation on a tour bus traveling to the next gig.
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Everybody wants to hear the stories of the road. Everybody wants to hear how the songs were put together. Everybody wants to know just about everything. Everybody wants 'The Dirt' so to speak. You can find it all here. The good, the bad and the ugly truth. Rock journalist Tyson Briden talks candidly with many great artists that molded the 80's and early 90's hard rock and heavy metal scene. Hold on tight because it may be a bumpy ride!
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Hello fellow songwriters, I’m Trey Xavier and this is the How Songs Are Made podcast. You may know me from the Gear Gods YouTube channel or my band In Virtue. And on this show, I’ll be talking to notable musical artists to learn about their songwriting process, how it is that they go from a seed of an idea to a full-blown song arrangement, and all the steps in between. I’m here to bring the songwriting wisdom of the masters of the craft to you directly, and to get the most usable advice from ...
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John Ruhlin is the Co-founder of Giftology Group and Ruhlin Group, which are gift strategy and logistics companies. He is also the author of Giftology and the #1 all-time distributor of Cutco Knives in its 65-plus year history. As a master gift-giver, John forges lifetime relationships while generating enormous returns for his clients. His impressi…
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You may not have heard of Noel, but if you listen to this show, you've definitely heard us sing the praises of two people who wrote and produced a record for her. Ron and Russell Mael from Sparks made "Is There More To Life Than Dancing?" for Noel shortly after completing their "No. 1 Song in Heaven" album. Noel's record is more of the same great d…
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Felix Velarde is the Founder and Chair of 2Y3X, a marketing firm designed to help agencies triple in size within two years. He is a seasoned entrepreneur and a pioneering figure in the digital marketing industry, with a career spanning over several decades. He founded one of the first web design agencies in the United Kingdom and grew it into a hig…
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Jason Fladlien is the Co-founder of Rapid Crush, a company renowned for its groundbreaking marketing strategies and expertise in webinars. He has driven over $250 million in sales, reaching over 150,000 customers across 131 countries, making him a pivotal figure in the online marketing arena. Known for his unique journey from a Hare Krishna monk to…
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If you’re looking for some good rock music, look no further than Robert Jon and the Wreck. Their newest record, “Red Moon Rising,” is out now. It’s a fun record that promises an exciting live show. For more information and to find out when they are playing near you, check out their website and follow them on Facebook. Plus, we see the Surfrajettes …
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David Boyle is the Founder and Consultant at Boyle Brands, a package food and beverage consulting firm that provides leadership and technical support in supply chain and product development. As a 3x founder and serial entrepreneur, he has helped launch over 200 CPG product lines. David has worked with Fortune 500 companies and A-list celebrities an…
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Hard rock band Bullets and Octane are survivors. For the past 25+ years, they've been playing their brand of hard rock and touring regularly, including collaborations with Paige Hamilton from Helmet and Gilby Clarke from Guns n Roses. The band has been regularly releasing singles for the past 6 months, so, what comes next? We talked with lead singe…
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Kyle McDowell is a coach, inspirational speaker, and the best-selling author of Begin With WE, which shares how to build and sustain a culture of excellence. As a former corporate executive who spent 30 years leading tens of thousands of employees in Fortune 10 companies, he guides leaders in creating impactful and enduring business transformations…
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Liza Roeser is the Founder of FiftyFlowers and FlowerFix, online platforms delivering fresh flowers from farm to doorstep. She also founded Farm Exports to support farm-to-door deliveries. Starting with a $4,200 investment from Peace Corps savings, Liza built an eight-figure business without outside funding. She is passionate about business, leader…
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Here's a fun fact that we (and likely most db's fans) didn't know- their debut record has never been available on vinyl in the US. Thankfully, that wrong will be righted when "Stands for DeciBels" comes out on vinyl on June 6th. We talked with drummer Will Rigby about revisiting the record that started it all. (And, is there more material in the wi…
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Damon Burton is the Founder and President of SEO National, an agency providing personalized search engine optimization. As a seasoned entrepreneur and SEO expert, he has outranked billion-dollar companies on Google and provided his clients with innovative marketing and SEO strategies. Damon has a passion for helping businesses grow and thrive throu…
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Metal fans know David Ellefson from his work with Megadeth and his current band, Kings of Thrash. For the rest of you, you're in for a treat. We talked with David about touring the world, how to stay young and what he's learned from revisiting songs he wrote early on in his career. David and the Kings of Thrash are heading out on the road this summ…
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Jill Chiappe is the Founder and CEO of Coachability, an executive coaching and consulting firm. As an executive coach, she has over two decades of experience working with Fortune 100 companies. Jill’s recent work includes developing courses to scale businesses and enhance team training. In this episode: Many executives feel swamped by the grind of …
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Gary Cohen is the Vice President of Certified Contractors Network (CCN), a company dedicated to teaching best practices for systemizing businesses in the home improvement industry. With 30 years in the retail industry and over 15 years as a C-suite executive and leadership coach, Gary stepped out of retirement to leverage his expertise in learning …
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This week, we sit down with Kyle Pfeiffer, better known to his fans as Blacklite District. He's gained popularity by working with video game creators and other fans on-line, creating a much more immersive and lasting relationship with his music. His current tour starts at an earlier time and includes time after the gig for everyone to hang out and …
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Nancy Calabrese is the Founder and CEO of One of a Kind Sales, a company specializing in lead generation, appointment setting, and sales training for the B2B community. The company creates, documents, and executes sales calls and processes, aiming to set quality appointments that close deals. With a background as a headhunter and experience launchi…
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Nick Sabia is a songwriter, singer, musician, engineer... basically, his life is made up of music. And, really, we're all the richer for it. His new song, Back East, is out now. (And don't worry, there's more where that came from.) For more information, you can check out Nick's website, or you can follow him on Instagram. Plus, updates on one of ou…
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Chase Harmer is the Founder of Wishes Inc, a platform designed to make charitable giving instant, tax-deductible, and transparent. As an accomplished entrepreneur, he built and sold a $40 million business at the age of 32. A veteran in the payments industry, Chase has a track record of scaling startups and creating innovative technological solution…
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Shawn Feurer is a seasoned coach and entrepreneur with a rich background in systematizing businesses. He has over 20 years of experience in the home improvement industry and as a business process trainer. Transitioning from operating a successful construction company to coaching, Shawn helps individuals reprogram their subconscious minds, overcome …
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Rockie Lynne is a talented singer, songwriter and guitarist. And, while that is impressive enough, when you hear Rockie's story, it becomes all the more fascinating. "Rockie Lynne- Where I Belong," is a new documentary film telling the story of the album and of Rockie's life. The accompanying album, Love, is more of the honest, sincere songwriting …
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We thought a nice way to celebrate Earth Day would be to share this conversation with music star and children's author Sheri Miller. Along with her mother, Linda Miller, Sheri wrote a book, called "Honoring Our Planet- Think!" which is out now. We talked about conservation, gratitude and so much more. "Honoring Our Planet- Think!" is available righ…
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Michelle Nedelec is the Co-founder and Executive Coach at Awareness Strategies, a digital marketing agency helping businesses generate leads, increase profits, and close sales. As an experienced coach, podcast host, international speaker, and best-selling author, she has over two decades of experience in digital marketing for trades and professiona…
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We spoke with Escape the Fate’s drummer when their most recent record came out. Now, as a special edition of Out of the Shadows coming out AND a tour with the Emo Orchestra starting tonight, we talk with the band’s lead singer Craig Mabbitt. On top of getting to hear some Escape the Fate favorites, you’ll also get to hear some of the greatest hits …
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Tony Morando is the Chief Sales Officer at World Emblem, the #1 producer of custom emblems for apparel businesses. He has been a key player in guiding the company through significant expansion phases, growing the employee base from 100 to just under 1,300 across Mexico, the US, and Canada. With a leadership style rooted in authenticity and empathy,…
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Richard Weylman is an award-winning business consultant, Hall of Fame keynote speaker, customer service Hall of Fame inductee, and international best-selling author. He offers personalized strategies for Fortune 500 companies to acquire and retain lifelong clients. As a researcher and serial entrepreneur, Richard delivers dynamic presentations to a…
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Her name is Mama B and she has the novel idea of making music that is not only fun for kids, but adults too. Combining her skills as a pop writer and performer, Jacq Becker has created fun, memorable and, yes, enjoyable music for everyone in the family to enjoy. Her debut album, Imaginology is out on May 12th. (Just in time for Mother’s Day.) For m…
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Andrew Dingee is the Founder and CEO of System Safety, a safety solutions consulting agency. As a safety executive, airline pilot, and Marine fighter pilot, he improves safety management systems to achieve the lowest possible risks. Andrew’s approach has enhanced event reporting, allowing further insight into system errors. He is also a keynote spe…
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Sebastian Jimenez is the CEO of Rilla, a leading speech analytics software tool for outside sales and service. The company serves businesses in the home service, CPG, medical, finance, and retail sectors. He was recognized by Forbes as one of the Cloud 100 Rising Stars. In this episode: The highest-performing sales businesses are not always managed…
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Luke has the flu. Heidi is off gallivanting. Until they rejoin forces next week, enjoy this classic episode of Grad School, culled from deep within our vaults. The music of Van Dyke Parks has always taken you on a journey, replete with exquisite sounds and thoughtful concepts. His most recent collaboration is no different- he never met Veronica Val…
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Adam Radulovic is the Founder and President of XL.net, a company specializing in outsourcing IT departments for small businesses. With a unique business alignment process, XL.net eliminates 80% of technology issues by proactively auditing and optimizing IT systems. Before founding XL.net, Adam was the Director at Divine Parlano, a software company …
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They've been rocking the country for 10 years and now Paralandra is releasing their second full-length album. The Body Electric is available on April 4th, wherever you get your records. We talked with lead singer Cassandra Carson about the collaboration that makes Paralandra what it is and what it's like having your dad playing lead guitar. Plus, w…
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There may be no easy way to describe the music of Johnny Manchild and the Poor Bastards other than by simply saying "it's good." Their new album, Rapture Waltz is out on March 22nd. We sat down with Johnny to talk about the emotional power of music and of fandom and so much more. For more information and tour dates, you can check out their website …
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Erika Andresen is the Founder and Business Continuity Expert at EaaS Consulting LLC, which advises companies on disaster preparedness and operational continuity. As an expert in emergency management and business continuity, she has 10 years of experience advising on disaster response for an international organization. After a career as a corporate …
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Bettye LaVette is a music legend. Heading back out on the road this spring, Bettye is one of the foremost interpreter of songs and is one of a kind. We got to talk with Bettye about her albums, including how she approaches her interpretations as well as her fascinating and long-running career. Her most recent album LaVette! Is available now. For mo…
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If you’re looking for hard rock and great guitar, you need to look no further than Firewind. We talked with bandleader Gus G on the eve of the release of the new album, Stand United. Plus, we talk about Heidi’s big weekend and big summer plans, and if that isn’t enough, we extended an invitation to a particular politician to be a guest on the show …
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Victoria Downing is the President of Remodelers Advantage, a consulting group helping remodeling companies build robust, consistently profitable businesses. After spending 10 years in marketing, advertising, and sales, she joined Remodelers Advantage to help remodeling entrepreneurs create lead-generation programs. Victoria helped launch Remodelers…
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Chris Smith is the Founder of The Possibility Company, a training company helping entrepreneurs and financial advisors communicate their stories. While working as a financial advisor, he inspired his firm to elevate its story and message to acquire new assets, scale, and create a lasting legacy. As a coach, Chris developed the Campfire Effect to he…
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Jason Yarusi is the Founder and Managing Member of Yarusi Holdings, a multifamily investment firm repositioning properties through operational efficiencies, renovations, and rebranding. Since 2017, the company has amassed over 2,300 apartment units. As a real estate syndicator, investor, and private fund manager, Jason manages over $245 million in …
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You know how we feel about Yoko Ono 'round these parts, so when we realized her birthday was coming up, it was the perfect time to reconnect with friend of the show Madeline Bocaro, who wrote a great biography of the artist titled, In Your Mind- The Infinite Universe of Yoko Ono. So we did. We talked about the book, what Yoko thought and the overal…
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Andy McNeill is the Founder and CEO of American Meetings, Inc. (AMI), a global meeting services organization providing high-level in-person, virtual, and hybrid meeting services to global organizations. With over 25 years of experience in the meetings and events space, he has assisted firms in various industries, including pharmaceutical, biotech, …
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