The Duo Behind The Banyan Collective Bring Eclectic Podcasts To Ogden’s Ears | Entertainment


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Talk about art and adventure (and beer), and you’ve pretty much covered this creative mountain town.

R. Brandon Long and Todd Oberndorfer record podcasts that take listeners across Ogden, from the world of musicians, writers and makers to the dirtiest trails, the hoppiest craft beers and the top of the highest peaks.

They are the founders of The Banyan Collective, a growing media company that evolved from live radio broadcasting KWCR 88.1 Weber FM (Weber State University), the “Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show”, launched by Long in 2010 .

Now, “Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show” is a weekly podcast produced by The Banyan Collective, along with “Nine Rails Arts Podcast”, “LITerally Podcast” and “Van Sessions”.

Most of the podcasts are recorded from their studios at The Monarch, including the most recent, a live spin-off from LITerally called “Bourbon Beer & Books” which continues their deeper dive into the art world.

The arts were a backbone for The Banyan Collective which started with Van Sessions in 2016, and now the arts and adventure are their “wheelhouse”. Both outdoor enthusiasts, Oberndorfer and Long have never been strangers to the arts either. Like their podcasts, they embody the arts and adventure in their own lives.

“The truth is that the outdoor lifestyle is part of who I am.… The arts are embedded in outdoor culture,” Long said, adding that he both lived in art spaces. and adventure since 2008.

He studied arts at Weber State University while working at the WSU Outdoor Program and earned a bachelor’s degree in creative writing and a minor in photography. Today he is the manager of the GEAR: 30 mountain gear store in Ogden and a partner of The Banyan Collective. In both cases, he is heavily involved in the community.

Oberdorfer, Arts Outreach Officer and Advisor to the Department of Visual Art and Design and Assistant Art Professor at WSU, is also very connected to the community, combining social action and art in addressing issues. such as clean air and population growth in its printmaking and graphic design work.

As the Outreach Officer, Oberndorfer is the Director of Arts in the Parks, a free summer program that started in 2010, and visits various parks in the town of Ogden offering children and their families the opportunity to explore the visual and performing arts through hands-on activities.

Her community work involves collaboration and consultation with WSU, Ogden City Arts, Ogden Downtown Alliance, Ogden’s Historic 25th Street, Summit Powder Mountain, Ogden City Community & Economic Development, Union Creative Agency, and Ogden First. Long and Oberndorfer both sit on the Town of Ogden Arts Advisory Board.

Their community volunteer efforts resulted in their first artistic podcast, “Van Sessions”. The podcast was born out of Long’s idea of ​​making artistic announcements for the public on the first Friday art walks on historic 25th Street from inside the couple’s “Tan Van” to keep warm. Instead of public announcements, they quickly invited musicians into the van for interviews and sets of four songs.

The live podcast and music series, every first Friday at the Monarch, looks like a concert but with unique elements; it’s a platform for artists to share their stories.

Artists from across the Wasatch front have joined “Van Sessions”, including many from Ogden – The Proper Way, Orchard Wild, Standards and Substandards, Sammy Brue and Cherry Thomas, to name a few.

The goal of “Van Sessions”, partially self-funded with further support through a generous grant from Ogden City Arts and sponsorship from The Monarch, is to be a conduit for emerging local artists, a place where artists are. appeared first, Long and Oberndorfer mentioned. They say “this is history in the making”, a place where listeners will look back and find artists who “blew up from Ogden”.

KJ Ward, formerly of The Wednesday People, was the first to perform “Van Sessions” in February 2016. His new rock band, The Backseat Lovers, have released two albums since 2018 and have attracted over 2 million monthly listeners on Spotify.

The “Nine Rails Arts Podcast”, highlighting the latest happenings in the Ogden Arts District, is also growing with positive changes. Host of the show Oberndorfer will be joined by friends and advocates of the arts Cam McLeod, Jake McIntyre and Shane Osguthorpe as new hosts.

“People listen to podcasts to get away from it all, to learn, to stay informed or to be inspired,” Oberndorfer said. With his new co-hosts, he says they are “obliged to hit at least one of these points”.

Upcoming episodes of the “Nine Rails Arts Podcast” include conversations with the teams behind Ogden City Limits, Ogden Contemporary Arts’ current exhibition on “Social Undistance”, and Don Rimx’s new mural project in downtown Montreal. ‘Ogden.

“Collectively, we will continue to explore what it means to be an adventurous creative, as well as sharing the stories of Ogden’s new creative district Nine Rails,” Oberndorfer said.

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