191 episodes

Each week "Crude Conversations" features a guest who represents a different aspect of Alaska. Follow along as host Cody Liska takes a contemporary look at what it means to be an Alaskan.

Support and subscribe at www.patreon.com/crudemagazine and www.buymeacoffee.com/crudemagazine

Crude Conversations crudemag

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 125 Ratings

Each week "Crude Conversations" features a guest who represents a different aspect of Alaska. Follow along as host Cody Liska takes a contemporary look at what it means to be an Alaskan.

Support and subscribe at www.patreon.com/crudemagazine and www.buymeacoffee.com/crudemagazine

    EP 111 Johnny’s Girl, a neon Anchorage and a life of her own with Kim Rich

    EP 111 Johnny’s Girl, a neon Anchorage and a life of her own with Kim Rich

    In this one, Cody talks to journalist and author Kim Rich. She wrote the classic memoir “Johnny’s Girl,” it’s about her tumultuous upbringing in Anchorage’s underworld. Back in the 1960s, her dad, Johnny, worked Anchorage’s nightlife — gambling houses, prostitution and get-rich-quick schemes. Her mom, Ginger, was an exotic dancer. She had mental health issues and spent years of her life in a number of institutions. Both of their lives — Johnny and Ginger — were cut short, leaving Kim to fend for herself at a young age.

    Through research, interviews and recollection, Kim would write about her parents to try to work out her feelings and understanding of them. She found that her dad was a complicated man, and that her mom was a tragic figure — loving and caring, but in the throes of mental anguish.

    She’s always put a lot of thought into describing and understanding Anchorage as a city and the people who live there. In her book, she describes it as neon — both physically neon and existentially neon. The bright, flashy lights of downtown Anchorage and the pioneer spirit of the 60s influenced her perception. It was a place of endless possibilities, where anyone could do anything; a place you could run away to and remake yourself in whatever image you wished.

    Today, Kim says that she’s enjoying getting older and that she feels like she’s finally mellowing. She lives in Louisiana — teaching journalism and trying to get used to the fact that her kids have moved out of the house — but she still considers Alaska home.

    • 1 hr 39 min
    Chatter Marks EP 043 Digging for Alaskana with Jimmy Riordan

    Chatter Marks EP 043 Digging for Alaskana with Jimmy Riordan

    Jimmy Riordan is a multidisciplinary artist and educator who’s currently in-residence at the Anchorage Museum, digitizing and archiving the work of Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta musicians, as well as all the other Alaska music he’s collected over the years. He spends a lot of time in thrift stores and going through junk bins and scouring the internet — anywhere old records might exist.

    When he first started listening to old Alaskan albums and radio programs, he thought he was going to hear a lot of tourist music and songs about things like reindeer and caribou. But he soon realized that there was a lot of diversity in what he was hearing. There was hip hop, psychedelic rock, metal, punk. He even found a record of soundbites from people talking about their experience during the 1964 earthquake. 

    His motivation is that of a fan, driven by interest and excitement. If he can provide a service that is useful, in exchange for all the information and all the stuff that he’s getting, then that’s what he’s looking to do. His fascination with the music of Joe Paul is a good example. Joe Paul is a country and gospel singer originally from Kipnuk, Alaska, a community along the Kuskokwim River. And one day, while out digging for Alaskana, Jimmy came across one of his albums, “Eskimo Songs, Stories and Country Music.” He was floored by it and says that it rejuvenated his interest in collecting.

    • 1 hr 22 min
    EP 110 Breaking out the Theraflu with Andre Spinelli

    EP 110 Breaking out the Theraflu with Andre Spinelli

    In this one, Cody talks to Andre Spinelli, better known as Dre. In snowboarding, Dre is known for going big — off jumps, off cornices, even a lot of the handrails he used to hit were big. It’s probably because he started riding with old school Alaskan heavies like Dan Coffey and Kovi Linden. They might not have been as technical as other riders, but they were always charging down the mountain and going huge. Then, after Dre had been riding for awhile and filming parts for JB Deuce, Turnagain Hardcore and Think Thank, pro snowboarder Mark Landvik suggested that he and Dre move to Bellingham, Washington to pursue snowboarding as a career. Dre declined the offer because he wanted to stay in Alaska to see how far he could take snowboarding there. He was also in line to take over his dad’s construction business, Spinell Homes.

    Even when he was snowboarding all the time and filming video parts, Dre worked for Spinell Homes. He’d work his shift and then he would meet up with a film crew to get a shot. He did this often enough to get enough shots for multiple video parts a year. So, to say that his work ethic was unmatched, is probably a huge understatement. Today, he’s the president of Spinell Homes. He’s responsible for everything from home design to meeting with buyers to hiring employees to land development. That need to excel and go higher has always been there, he says. As a kid, he would jump off everything — playground equipment and even roofs into snow. Nowadays, he’s a weekend warrior, riding whenever he can and introducing his kids to it. In fact, his son, just like Dre, is starting to go big too.

    • 1 hr 30 min
    Chatter Marks EP 042 Navigating two different cultures with Nyabony Gat

    Chatter Marks EP 042 Navigating two different cultures with Nyabony Gat

    Nyabony Gat says that her immigrant story started 22 years ago. In 1992, when her parents and older siblings fled from South Sudan and found refuge in Ethiopia — the Second Sudanese civil war was going on between the central Sudanese government and the Sudan People's Liberation Army. It was a long and bloody war and it caused four million people to be displaced. 

    Nyabony doesn’t remember much from her childhood. She knows that she was born in Ethiopia and she knows that she and her family came to the United States when she was 3 or 4 years old. Other than that, she’s had to rely on stories from her parents and her aunts and her uncles. Those stories are helpful in understanding her identity, but they’re not a perfect substitute. She says that only personal experience can fill that void.

    Today, she works with Alaska’s immigrant and refugee community. She helps them overcome challenges and achieve their goals. And in that process, she says, they’re helping her better understand her background and herself.

    Chatter Marks is a podcast of the Anchorage Museum, and is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and Google Podcasts. Just search "Chatter Marks."

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Chatter Marks EP 041 The things beyond our sensorial understanding with LaMont Hamilton

    Chatter Marks EP 041 The things beyond our sensorial understanding with LaMont Hamilton

    When interdisciplinary artist LaMont Hamilton was young, he drew portraits of figures that he admired — Jimmy Hendrix, Che Guevara, Malcom X. He called it “scribble art,” a term he invented to describe abstract art that, the longer you look at it, the more it reveals. Then, as he got older, he became interested in photography. But he says that his first love, the one that he considers to be the foundation of his work, is poetry. 

    He says that a lot of what he does cannot easily be translated to words. It needs to be experienced and understood through our senses. To sit with it and to meditate on it opens us up to its energy and allows ideas to gravitate toward us. When this happens, we create a situation that nurtures a deeper conversation with the world around us. 

    Right now, he’s in-residence, at the Anchorage Museum, working with poets, artists and musicians, and developing a light and sound installation called "To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World." It features sounds of elements — air, earth, fire, water, and aether. And field recordings from Europe and North and South America — sounds of our changing earth. He says that, unlike a painting, this exhibition is an experience that encounters you, you don’t encounter it because it’s going to be playing whether you’re there or not.

    Chatter Marks is a podcast of the Anchorage Museum, and is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and Google Podcasts. Just search "Chatter Marks."

    • 1 hr 33 min
    Chatter Marks EP 40 Infusing life and art with Charles J. Tice

    Chatter Marks EP 40 Infusing life and art with Charles J. Tice

    Charles J. Tice is a visual and literary creative in Anchorage, Alaska with an emphasis on photography and gonzo journalism. He's currently in-residence, at the Anchorage Museum, working on a project called Artist Proof #6. It’s a book that’ll feature 100 photographs of strangers, assisted by a narrative. The writing is important, he says, probably the most important part of the project. So, he works on a typewriter because it’s less about technical precision and more about getting his ideas onto the page. He says the project is a love song, and that it’s as much about discovering who he is as it is about representing his community.

    Most of the work that he does is a first person narrative. He creates gonzo journalism, infusing himself into a story and becoming part of it. This was true when he quit a steady job to work on a political campaign that he believed in; It was true when he hitchhiked across the United States, photographing people and talking to them about their lives; It was true when he tracked down his birth mother; And it’s true now. Because, more often than not, his life and his work are one and the same — they’re forever intertwined and feeding off each other.

    • 1 hr 9 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
125 Ratings

125 Ratings

PhoneticAK ,

Long time fan “phonetic”

What Cody is doing with his podcasts isn’t just entertainment. It’s a documentation of real people having real conversations with people from a very real place, Alaska. His intent shines through every episodes as he interviews interesting people, not just popular people. His questioning is on point, and insightful.. Especially if you’re in Alaska this is a must listen.

bangontherocks ,

AK

Cody has a clear and engaging podcasting voice that leads listeners threw great conversations. I highly recommend this pod.

tNaTNT ,

A++!

Crude Conversations are always a great listen. Impromptu and unrehearsed with the feel of being a fly on the wall during a personal conversation. Cody is not afraid to choose underdogs to interview which I find really interesting!

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