Become a more inventive, imaginative you. Every week, Guy Raz (creator of How I Built This) leads a deep dive conversation with someone at the top of their game. From conquering stage fright to learning to be more present and focused, you'll learn how each guest mastered their craft and ultimately became more successful in life. The result? An arsenal of tools and techniques you can apply to your own life and work, allowing you to harness your talent and become a better version of yourself.
Bjork: The Icelandic Superstar on Being a Child Prodigy, the Power of Nature, and How to Stay Creative
This episode comes out for free on Tuesday, December 13, and is available early and ad-free for Wondery+ subscribers.
Bjork is a singular artist whose work extends beyond her music to include acting and conceptual art. Her latest album, "Fossora," features a bass clarinet ensemble and the accompanying videos evoke mushrooms and tree roots. She talks with Guy about forming her unique vocal style, recording her first album at 11 years old, and why she uses symbols from nature to define each album.
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Andy Garcia: From Havana to Hollywood, an A-Lister Who Still Feels Like An Outsider
Andy Garcia is an actor (Ocean's 11, The Untouchables, The Godfather Part III) who is best known for playing the suave leading man alongside other Hollywood greats like Sean Connery, Diane Keaton, and Al Pacino. He talks to Guy about fleeing the Cuban Revolution, waiting tables for celebrities in Beverly Hills, and the best advice he got from Mario Puzo on how to prepare for The Godfather Part III.
Links from the show:The "stroller scene" from The UntouchablesFather of the Bride (2022) trailerAndy as Terry Benedict in Ocean's 11The Lost City trailerAndy's Instagram
Jim Parsons: From Dreaming to Doing By Trusting Your Talent and Saying 'Yes'
Jim Parsons is an actor who became famous starring as Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory. But what you might not know about the on-screen super-nerd is that he's a classically trained stage actor. After twelve years playing the same character, now he's trying on new roles (Hollywood, Spoiler Alert, A Man of No Importance) that allow him to flex some different creative muscles. He talks to Guy about his lifelong ambition to be a star, the uncertainty of coming out, his love of New York City, and the first, scary steps taking on new roles.
Links from the show: The Best of Sheldon from The Big Bang TheoryThe Big Bang Theory cast talks with Stephen Colbert after the series finaleJim talks about playing Henry Wilson in HollywoodSpoiler Alert (2022) TrailerJim's InstagramKaley Cuoco's InstagramMayim Bialik's InstagramJohnny Galecki's Instagram
Zooey Deschanel: Stopping Stage Fright in Its Tracks, and How She Turned a “Disorder” Into a Superpower
Zooey Deschanel is an actor (New Girl, Elf, 500 Days of Summer) musician (She & Him), crafter, and entrepreneur (HelloGiggles, Lettuce Grow). She tells Guy how being diagnosed with ADHD as a child affected her life and career, how the "loneliness" of the actor's life led her to songwriting and her collaboration with M Ward, and how – right before landing her biggest role – she almost quit acting. Zooey also delivers some practical tips on how to turn fear into excitement, and makes the case that regularly pursuing new creative paths makes you better at everything else.
Links from the show:Zooey's parents' filmographies: Caleb Deschanel & Mary Jo DeschanelZooey's first instrument: the Casio SK-1Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences in Santa MonicaScene from Zooey's first-ever role on TV: Veronica's ClosetZooey and Frances McDormand "Drugs & Promiscuous Sex" scene from Almost FamousThe Go-Getter (2007 film), how Zooey met M WardLet's Dance by M WardVincent O'Brien by M WardThieves by She & Him (Official Video), one of Zooey's favorites which she wrote in "12 minutes"She & Him's "pandemic project," Melt Away: A Tribute to Brian WilsonNew Girl full episodes on AmazonSaturday Night Live sketch - Bein' Quirky With Zooey Deschanel HelloGiggles Lettuce Grow
Billy Eichner: Playing the Long Game and Breaking New Ground for LGBTQ Audiences
Billy Eichner is an actor, writer and comedian whose most recent film is the groundbreaking rom-com Bros. Billy talks to Guy about having to create his own path to success, how he developed the viral hit Billy on the Street, and what he hopes all audiences, straight and LGBTQ, will take away from Bros.
Links from the show:Billy on the Street: Best MomentsBilly on the Street: The Meryl-Go-Round Billy on the Street: Emma StoneBilly on the Street: Chris Evans Billy on the Street: Shondaland with Amy SedarisBilly on the Street: The Julianne Moore Acting AttackBros Trailer
Weird Al Yankovic: Achieving Massive Success by Leaning Into His True (Nerdy) Self
Alfred Matthew Yankovic, when he was six years old, was told by his parents to choose between accordion and guitar lessons. “And my parents being the visionaries that they were said, ‘Oh, young Alfred would love to play the accordion.’” Alfred, today better known as the chart-topping musician, satirist, and beloved nerd Weird Al Yankovic, tells Guy how that decision changed his life, and decades of popular music to come. They also discuss how Kurt Cobain saved Weird Al from a lifetime of spoofing Michael Jackson songs, and how intense the process of writing silly songs can be.
Links from the show:Dr. Demento, Weird Al's early major influence and later employer"Belvedere Cruising", the first song of Weird Al's to air on Dr. Demento's showWeird Al playing "My Bologna" in San Luis Obispo in 1979Eight Weird Al music videos side-by-side with with the songs they spoofMusic video for Weird Al's "Fat"Weird Al interviewing Patrick Stewart at Comic-ConTrailer for "Weird: The Al Yankovic Story"