The Slaw is a podcast from Very Local Pittsburgh about the people and places of the Steel City.
Each week, we'll be highlighting some of the unique collaborations among Pittsburgh artists & business. From the makers to the mailmen, to the ladies who make pierogies, we’ll be featuring very Pittsburgh stories.
The Slaw is brought to you by Very Local Pittsburgh. Very Local Pittsburgh is the user’s guide to the city. We’ll tell you where to go, what to know and where to park when you get there.
60 - ICYMI Meet some of Punxsutawney Phil’s Inner Circle
The Slaw is recording fresh episodes, but last year, we interviewed some members of the Groundhog Day Inner Circle and met Punxsutawney Phil. Listen to learn about the history of the event, how Phil has managed to continue predicting the weather for over 135 years, and meet some of his team — they keep the festivities going year after year. Plus, we highlight Quantum Theatre’s NearBuy project and the opening of Sklep, a Polish market in Polish Hill.
59 - ICYMI Restaurateur Ben Wong of Two Sisters & Banh Mi & Ti
The Slaw is currently recording fresh interviews. In the meantime, please enjoy this interview from the archives with restaurateur Ben Wong of Banh Mi & Ti in Lawrenceville and Two Sisters in East Liberty. While the interview first aired approximately a year ago, we think it is as important as ever to support local restaurants right now. Press play for some cozy food content. Plus, what’s one thing you shouldn’t miss this week? It’s actually two things: Piper’s Pub now has online ordering. And for those of you looking to plan your MLK Day, check out Repair The World’s schedule of events and service opportunities.
58 - Tony Theil of Attic Records
In this week’s episode, we meet Tony Theil of Attic Records. Just how much does Theil love buying, selling and playing records? He quit multiple jobs and moved to Millvale from Ohio when owner Fred Bohn Jr. offered him a job at the store. Learn about the history of Attic Records (spoiler alert: it wasn’t just records at the start) and about the “Pittsburgh sound.” Theil gives some advice for those just starting to collect vinyl and shouts out some local bands whose albums he thinks you should own. (It’s a non-comprehensive list.) Since Theil lives right above the shop, we also ask him to share some of his favorite Millvale spots. Plus, a little year-end review and some highlights from this year on The Slaw.
Links in this episode:
Attic Records Website
Attic Records Instagram
What is the Pittsburgh sound?
57 - Maker Month with Jamal Etienne-Harrigan of Uncle Jammy’s BBQ rubs and sauces
It’s the final week of Maker Month, and in this episode, we meet Jamal Etienne-Harrigan of Uncle Jammy’s sauces and seasonings. Learn more about his early cooking experiences and what inspires him. Of his creative process, Etienne-Harrigan explains, “I'll come up with a name and then I will backtrack towards making the recipe fit the name. And for a lot of people, that's not the way it goes.” Not just for barbecued meats, he offers some alternate applications for Uncle Jammy’s seasonings. He even has a non-dairy ranch rub. Etienne-Harrigan shares how a (non-romantic) meet-cute with his neighbor Dennis Guy of First Sip Brew Box led to some beer-related product expansion and his two Fresh Fest Beer Fest collaborations with Recon Brewing. When asked how COVID-19 affected his business, his narrative of the fear and uncertainty that surrounded the first shutdown weekend in March is sure to resonate, but his attitude is inspiring. He asked himself the question: “Am I going to come out of this pandemic better off than I was or worse?” During this time, his business has expanded to additional Giant Eagle and Whole Foods stores.
Links in this episode:
Uncle Jammy’s Sauces and Seasonings
56 - Maker Month with artist Oreen Cohen
It’s week three of Maker Month, our series on local folks who make things for a living. In homage to Pittsburgh’s steelworking past, in this episode we chat with local artist Oreen Cohen, whose work includes large public sculptures. From listening to a community’s stories to scouring the streets for materials, Cohen explains how she gets inspiration from a particular place. She shares her love of the Carrie Furnaces in Rankin and how it influenced her choice to come to Pittsburgh. She speaks in detail about her most recent installation at Wightman Park -- three sculptures designed in collaboration with her business partner Allison Zapata and the local Squirrel Hill community. Listen and learn how her family’s history with stained glass has come full circle in her present pandemic projects.
Plus, what’s the one thing you need to know this week? It’s the dates of the last two Pittsburgh Sandwich Society food truck appearances for the year -- Holiday Hot Chicken Night on Dec. 11 and A Very Food Truck Christmas on Dec. 18.
Links in this episode:
Oreen Cohen Website
Oreen Cohen Instagram
Carrie Blast Furnaces Historic Landmark
55 - Maker Month with Darren Myers of From These Woods
It’s week two of Maker Month, and this week’s episode features local woodworker Darren Myers. A degree in art, followed by a home purchase that required a lot of work, led Myers to travel to Vermont to learn more about woodworking. He believes that the physical aspect of working with his hands is what makes him so passionate about the craft, and the fact that he is “able to harness an old-school skill set in the modern day, where it's not as not as prevalent as it used to be.” Learn about what influences him, his process, and his dream projects.
When asked if Pittsburgh helps or hinders his work as an artist, Myers explains:
“I’ve struggled with location in my life, where I’m supposed to be or what I’m drawn to. I'm not very far away from the woods. Even in my neighborhood, I can go and grab a trunk of a tree that’s across the street. You can't really do that in a lot of other cities. So the geological aspect of it is crucial. I think Pittsburgh is part of the reason why I'm able to do what I do.”
Similar to last week’s guest, graphic designer Paul Haggerty, Myers also made some “pandemic projects,” including some dice cups that were a result of playing a baseball simulation game with his friends over Zoom earlier this year.
Links in this episode:
From These Woods Etsy
From These Woods Instagram
Good Local Listen
I love that it’s about many different things in and around Pittsburgh
Only downside is that it’s so short!
A great way to get out while inside!
I think I’m late to this party, but this podcast series is giving me a glimpse into things about Pittsburgh I thought I knew about, but there is always more to learn- and in even more detail! I appreciate that the most recent content in the interviews is relevant to these strange times of CoVid, and the questions have brought out the best in the speakers who are focused on a really wide range of interests. I love the emphasis on all types of community entrepreneurship & I can’t wait to make my way though the whole archive. Thanks Very Local Pgh!
This podcast is a PGH gem
This is a great PGH based podcast and we’re lucky to have it, so please keep up the good work! I’m looking forward to hearing more as this grows and I love the small business shoutout/ collaborations as well!