The Hear and Now delves into the socio-political themes and issues that continue to shape the music industry, and looks at how they feed back into the music itself. Covering the topics of politics, race, gender, sexuality, mental health and money, the podcast features guests and conversations from all corners of the music industry, hosted and produced by Liv Cowle.
Hosted and Produced by Liv Cowle
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EP 6: Money For Nothing
In the final episode of season one, discussing money in the industry, Liv portrays music as the business it is. Welcoming Luke Hinton, award-winning music promoter (Juicebox Live) and regional coordinator for Music Venue Trust, he and Liv discuss the financial impact an entire year without live music has had on independent UK venues, and the repercussions for the industry if we were to lose these sites. As a celebration of live music, the playlist for this episode is entirely made up of live recordings – from stadium gigs to intimate studio settings – featuring the onstage talents of Elbow, Bleachers and Beyoncé.
EP 5: Self Care
After a whole year of national lockdowns, those in the music industry have arguably been among those most affected – financially, emotionally and mentally. Liv looks this episode about how the disappearance of work opportunities has affected musicians’ mental health across the UK, speaking with freelance musician Russell Swallow about his own experience, and hearing from psychologist and counsellor Rachel Jepson (founder of Counselling for Musicians) about the support available to those in need. Liv then presents a playlist of tracks whose lyrics cover different journeys of mental health struggles, from hitting rock bottom to coming out the other side – including Mac Miller, Arlo Parks, SOAK and Johnny Nash. EP 5 Spotify playlist available here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0cTLBFMfT18hAxyJGDxcSF?si=4e3dd3e494de4192
EP 4: She
Following on from last episode's dissection of gender in the music industry, Liv turns this time to open the conversation more broadly onto LGBTQ+ representation in the business. Welcoming Jamie Ahye from Pride In Music, this episode considers the progress and problems that make up the interwoven relationship between queer culture and music. Later, Liv turns to those within the LGBTQ+ community to pick the artists and songs that have been part of their journey, from George Michael to Bessie Smith. EP 4 Spotify playlist available here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/5QwT0ezoGGvD8u4arwHoZr?si=3752ec37e5a84c96
EP 3: I Am Her
Turning, this episode, to the mammoth topic of gender, Liv looks at the place and representation of women, transgender and gender-fluid creators in a continually male-dominated business. Welcoming music producer Aubrey Whitfield – whose career experience includes working with Little Mix, Simon Webbe and Kelly Clarkson – to discuss why only 2% of producers are women, we also hear from Carli Jefferson (of folk duo Lunatraktors) on the place and role of gender in the industry. Liv then looks at the music itself, highlighting songs tackling misogyny in the business, and bringing attention to some exciting but lesser-known trans and nonbinary artists, including Jackie Shane, Claud and Ryan Cassata.EP 3 Spotify playlist available here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/2ZKEQQnYiH6hhqringujey?si=fe9f2d90646d43da
EP 2: Street Fighter
In this topical and important second episode, The Hear and Now examines the role of race in shaping the music industry as we know it. Liv is joined by Digital Jukebox Records's Mark Anthony and Loose Ends's Carl McIntosh, discussing the lack of diversity in top executive roles and the experiences and suppression of Black people in the business. Liv then looks to the artists and records using their platforms to discuss racial troubles through lyrics, from Childish Gambino to music collective SAULT.EP 2 Spotify playlist available here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/37IpbEExFxOe3cQH7PewEs?si=94d5542bee2e40f3
EP 1: Brexit Blues
Welcome to the Hear and Now, the podcast exploring the influence of socio-political themes and issues on the music industry. In this first episode on politics, joined by musicians Lizzie Ball and Jessie Murphy from Let Music Live, Liv dives headfirst into the new Brexit deal and the devastating impact its new migration system will have on the touring industry. The episode then breaks down examples of music as a reaction to politics, picking out tracks whose lyrics speak out against everything from the refugee crisis to Brexit itself.
EP 1 Spotify playlist available here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/611vJ42jCRt1iYUt2YKo2q?si=c61fcf63b27a4c74