#136 Laura Graham


This week I speak to the tremendous Laura Graham.

I really enjoy talking to Laura, we have a few of the same struggles which is always good to hear, it’s nice to know you’re not the only one without clear direction in some areas.

I always come away from our chats with more insight. Laura is clearly on a journey with several of her projects in their early stages, but that makes it more interesting as an outsider and I’d imagine more exciting as an entrepreneur.

I regularly forget how valuable it is to talk to people about their problems, I often learn so much about mine in the process which is counter-intuitive. I am guilty of retreating inwards in times of stress, it has served me well in the past, but I don’t believe it can work forever, at the least sharing the problem can speed up the resolution.

Laura is a very open person, as you can see from her blog It’s Character Building, she’s open about her victories as well as her problems, which is something I can learn from personally.

Laura has made massive impact in the short time she has taken this new direction and I think the future is very bright for her. More power Laura.

- Josh.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Buddhify - https://buddhify.com/

Headspace - https://www.headspace.com/

Jason Hatt - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DT2fFzbmiWE

engine. - https://www.facebook.com/coworkengine/?ref=br_rs

The Big Lunch - https://www.edenprojectcommunities.com/thebiglunchhomepage

Northampton South MP, Andrew Lewer - https://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/25686/andrew_lewer/northampton_south

Northampton North MP, Michael Ellis - https://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/24866/michael_ellis/northampton_north

It’s Character Building - https://its-character-building.com/

Business Plan - https://www.gov.uk/write-business-plan

Bullet Journal - https://bulletjournal.com/

Northampton Town Ghost Walks - http://lookingglasstheatre.co.uk/

Nick Port of Contact Coffee - https://audioworks.podbean.com/e/the-audio-works-podcast-91-nick-porter/

#135 AudioStage


This week I spoke to Dan Grannum and Marcus Still from AudioStage.

The guys are creating a live session, interview and podcast across numerous platforms. They have high quality artists, footage and interviews. It’s a fantastic platform and they’ve done an amazing job. It’s such a time consuming venture, I mentioned in the episode how I felt video for this podcast wasn’t particularly beneficial, but for a live band it adds so much.

The first season has shown how professional the boys are, they are both musicians and have expertise videography and audio production so they make a formidable team. It was also nice to hear they have opinions, genuine opinions. It’s easy for people to sit on the fence, and it’s amazing hw neutral people can be when sitting in-front of a mic, but i't’s refreshing to hear these guys know what they like and what they don’t.

They’ve clearly learnt a lot in the short period they’ve been producing the videos. It’s good to see people aware of their mistakes and learning from them. I’ve been guilty in the past of refusing to own my mistakes, which inevitably leads to a downward spiral. Speaking to Dan and Marcus gave me a quick reminder to analyse my mistakes and move forward.

I really hope they keep this project moving, as it’s a big time investment they’ve got a challenge ahead of them, but if they can keep this level or productivity and production going, it’s definitely heading in the right direction.

- Josh.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Ginger Snaps - https://www.facebook.com/gingersnapspop/

Will Beckett - https://www.facebook.com/wqmbaudio

AudioStage - https://www.facebook.com/audiostagelive/

Kelly Jane Interview - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPX0dW4Fngc

Dexter AudioStage session - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gNJj0NGID9c

Cardi B - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QryoOF5jEbc

MF Doom - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRHyBwNtkLA

Billy Lockett - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRXybl_HgJs

John Peel - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfOCQj25Y_0

YUCK - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoUvWiko27A

Tank and The Bangas - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKzobTCIRDw

NPR - https://www.npr.org/

Jono and the Uke Dealers - https://www.facebook.com/JonoAndTheUkeDealers/

Sarpa Salpa - https://www.facebook.com/SarpaSalpaMusic/

#133 Sophie Galpin


It’s Christmas time again which means I have the opportunity to catch up with the tremendous Sophie Galpin! Sophie and I sat down at the studio a few hours before Let Me Be Yule Fantasy VII.

Sophie has had a busy year, and it’s always nice to see. I’m terrible for needing several reminders to make a change in my life, and Sophie is one of those (positive) reminders. Our tradition of meeting up each Christmas is a great way for us to reflect (both on air and off) about what we’ve done and what has happened. I’ve said it many times on the podcast before that reflection is useful but often forgotten s a tool for life direction. It’s easy to never do it, or to wallow in the past, but using past victories and failures to change your future course is a powerful ability, and that’s what learning an instrument is in it’s simplest form.

I’d argue that’s why Sophie has both been able to learn several instruments and have a successful music career. Likewise, as has been mentioned by other musicians, your personality and attitude is as an important factor as your music ability, and Sophie is blessed with an ace personality.

You can find Sophie popping up on TV, radio and on several albums over the past year, but if you follow her on Twitter you can see what she’s doing day-to-day.

p.s. I’ll be starting the Galpin fan club soon, you can be a Galpinator too. (undecided on the name, maybe Galp-Pack?

- Josh.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Sophie Galpin - https://twitter.com/sparkensoph

Is willpower a finite resource? - https://www.fastcompany.com/3065981/this-myth-about-willpower-is-holding-back-your-productivity

Decision Fatigue - https://www.huffpost.com/entry/8-ways-to-combat-decision-fatigue_b_6794022

Laura Graham - https://its-character-building.com/

Anna Calvi - http://annacalvi.com

PINS - http://www.wearepins.co.uk/

Self Esteem - https://www.facebook.com/RLTSELFESTEEM/

Soak - https://www.facebook.com/Soak0fficial/

Tom Grennan - https://www.tomgrennanmusic.com/

Joel Harries - https://joelharries.bandcamp.com/

Episode #132 Frances Lee


My conversation with Frances took several detours, all of which where enlightening and inspirational.

I initially wanted to talk to Frances about her art career. It was only when we discussed the route into her creativity that I discovered her experiences with mental health. I am regularly amazed by peoples openness and willingness to talk about intimate and revealing things, this is something I should learn to do myself. I have a tendency to keep quite and continue working.

The ability to discuss your thoughts and feelings is such a powerful and simple thing to do. The vocalising or at least construction of a concept that exists in your head into a fully formed sentence with a beginning middle and end is a useful tool in itself. I’ve lost count the amount of times I’ve said something out loud that had been rattling around my head for weeks and only in turning a concept into reality did it become clear it was either a) something I should act on, or b) complete shite.

Frances’ ability to discuss and analyse her own mental health is fascinating. As someone that has experienced extremes in life her insight is invaluable and I/we are so lucky that we have this conversation to learn from. I’m eternally grateful to Frances, I mentioned to her that she should start her own podcast, so if you could all pester her to do that we’ll have a show in no time!

Thanks Frances,

- Josh.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Frances Lee

TJAP #131 LDMR - http://bit.ly/131-ldmr

Jamie Catto - https://www.jamiecatto.com/

Insanely Gifted - https://amzn.to/2PAutCC

engine. - http://coworkengine.co.uk/

Ginger Snaps - https://www.facebook.com/gingersnapspop/

Episode #131 LDMR

#131 LDMR


LDMR are;

Arne Wolf - Drums

Mattes Kappert - Guitar

Jan Wagner - Guitar

Stefan Pfetzing - Bass

I really enjoyed talking to the guys from LDMR. I first met them at last years Twinfest event in Northampton. They had just played to a full house at The Lamplighter, I’ve been to that pub hundreds of times and I’ve never seen it so busy and energetic. I spoke to Arne afterwards and tried to arrange for them to come on the podcast. It was a last minute thing and we couldn’t make it work before they headed back to Germany. They recently came back for a couple of shows so we made sure we got together this time.

The fact these guys are willing to travel for 13 hours each way to play a couple of shows in Northampton not only shows their own dedication and passion for their art, but also the faith they have in Northampton. I think as Northamptonians we can learn a lot form these guys. We have a thriving music scene, we have great musicians and we have plenty of venues too.

LDMR’s music is new and exciting. I have no doubt they’ll go on to greater things so we should be watching bands like these at every opportunity. It also helps that they are nice guys too, they gave me a beer from Germany when I arrived and before I left I was invited to stay at their house for the next Twinfest.

Thanks LDMR.

- Josh

Mentions, in order of appearance;

LDMR - https://soundcloud.com/ldmr // https://www.instagram.com/ldmr_music/ // https://www.facebook.com/ldmrmusic

Twinfest - https://www.facebook.com/twinfest.northampton/

The Lamplighter - https://www.facebook.com/thelamplighter123/

The Garibaldi - https://www.facebook.com/thegaribaldihotel/

72% - https://www.facebook.com/72percentband/

Soundhaus - https://www.facebook.com/The-Soundhaus-438400856174682

King of Hearts - https://www.facebook.com/KingOfHeartsFestival/

Drinsipa - https://www.facebook.com/drinsipa/

Sarpa Salpa - https://www.facebook.com/SarpaSalpaMusic/

Cafe Trauma - http://www.cafetrauma.de/

Episode #130 Katie Malcolmson


#130 Katie Malcolmson.

I really enjoyed speaking to Katie. I’ve heard a lot about her over the years, her reputation as a good person and musician preceded her and our conversation only proved that further.

Katie is in a great position, (of her own creation), by being both a musician, someone that has been at the mercy of the industry and someone that has gone on to start her own business in that very industry.

One problem I notice with some industries or businesses is that the people higher up the chain, the people that make or break careers have often not been in that position themselves. The understanding and empathy you have and gain from helping people in a position you were once in is invaluable. Sometimes you can’t give people what they want, but at least with experience on your side you can point people in the right direction, and more importantly not abuse that power.

Katie’s knowledge and experience in music and life are clear after our conversation. Katie is clearly someone that has worked hard, has had career highs and I imagine lows too. What really struck me during our conversation is her modesty, and that comes through experience. I have no doubt her eagerly awaited album will be impressive as will her business.

Once again I’ve come away from a conversation (with someone I didn’t really know) more positive than I entered it. I’d argue Katie is a product of Northampton and the family/people/musicians within it. This is what inspires me, this gives me hope about the future of the town and the music industry writ large.

More power Katie, more power NN.

- Josh

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Hardcore Listing - https://www.acast.com/hardcorelisting

Distraction Pieces - https://www.facebook.com/distractionpiecesnetwork/

Julien Baker, Sprained Ankle - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sprained_Ankle_(album)

Sophie Galpin - https://sophiegalpin.tumblr.com/

One Little Indian - http://indian.co.uk/

Poppy Ackroyd - http://poppyackroyd.com/

Brixton Agency - http://brixtonagency.com/

Flux of Pink Indians - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flux_of_Pink_Indians

Max Richter - https://www.maxrichtermusic.com/

Sapiens, A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari - https://amzn.to/2DNnvb9

Joel Harries - https://joelharries.bandcamp.com/

Sandy Godoy - https://www.facebook.com/velvetengine/

Nirvana, Dumb - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xRuxuHjBY4

Super Yacht Magazine - https://www.superyachtworld.com/

Pias - https://www.pias.com/network/uk/

Katie Malco - https://katiemalco.bandcamp.com/

Episode #129 Paul Cheesbrough

#129 Paul Cheesbrough


I had a fascinating chat with Paul. I initially got Paul in to chat about his 100KM row challenge as i’m always curious to see peoples motivations and methods for taking on and (hopefully) completing these types of tasks and I hope I can borrow some of that focus and determination into my life.

We all falter from time to time and some of us have no direction at all, I have both of those circumstances in my life, some things have a clear path and some don’t. It can be hard to motivate yourself so any extra help or tips from someone undertaking a difficult challenge can be useful.

Pauls attitude toward this challenge, in fact something he mentions early on in this episode is that he doesn’t think it’s crazy at all. Perhaps that is the trick, to believe that it isn’t impossible, that it’s within reach. Through training, application and some knowledge big challenges are within reach.

That’s what I’ve taken away from this episode. Paul has shown me that I should take a less cynical approach and that maybe I should push myself further.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

BST Northampton - https://www.bstacademy.co.uk/

SOFEA - https://www.facebook.com/SOFEADidcot/

Ross Edgely - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68azjW5Hhok

Leadership and Self-Deception - https://amzn.to/2S2vxAL

The Anatomy of Peace - https://amzn.to/2R5Dvc8

Hardcore Listing - https://www.acast.com/hardcorelisting

Clarity Inspired - https://www.facebook.com/FuturesPlaced/

ICF - https://coachfederation.org/

Simon Sinek - https://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_inspire_action?language=en

Snowdon, YHA - https://www.yha.org.uk/hostel/yha-betws-y-coed

Friends of Becketts Park - https://www.facebook.com/Beckettsparkresidents/

100KM Row Live Feed - https://www.facebook.com/events/497356224114976/

100Km Row Challenge, Just Giving page - https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/100km-rowing-challenge?fbclid=IwAR2fTPcMxSy4e_UB0sesXWZws4ifl44hoqZWZwfW5CssbZHUtEQi5Ur2qhA

Taming Your Gremlin - https://amzn.to/2TovyAF

Castle Ashby - http://www.castleashbygardens.co.uk/

Coach Chez - https://www.instagram.com/coach_chez/

Episode #128 Bronte Huskinson

I really enjoyed talking to Bronte. I think the way she has approached her writing career is fascinating. She knows what her end goal is, (a publishing deal) and she has figured out a new and effective way to stack the odds in her favour. I would imagine the offering of a ready made audience makes the deal so sweet to a publisher that Bronte has an edge on the average writer, and any edge in a fierce market is beneficial.

Bronte clearly had an idea what she wanted to do from a young age and has followed a creative suitable path to get to that goal. It’s great to meet someone with clear goals, many of us struggle working out what we want to do and how we can get there, seeing someone succeeding is a positive reminder of what is possible.

Growing up in a household with a writer, in my opinion, would have had an effect on Bronte’s outlook, either consciously or unconsciously. My dad, brother and uncle are musicians and I’m sure those positive role models have pointed my career in musical directions, not that I was aware of it. I imagine as a parent that any positive influence you can have is welcomed.

We all need a positive nudge from time to time, something to make us correct our course and aim for the right target, Bronte was my positive reminder.

- Josh.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Somebody working on their mum’s car - Mighty Car Mods - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nk11ZZkGL9s

Mrs Hinch - https://www.instagram.com/mrshinchhome/

BookishBronte - https://www.instagram.com/bookishbronte

abookishphotographer - https://www.instagram.com/abookishphotgrapher

Seth Godin - https://seths.blog/2010/06/fear-of-shipping/

Charles Haynes - http://bit.ly/yt-121-charles-haynes

Rae DelBianco - https://www.instagram.com/rae.delbianco/

Hannah Argyle - https://www.instagram.com/hannahargyle/

Never Mind My Thigh Gap, by Bronte Huskinson - https://amzn.to/2QF8xaR

Featured Post - https://www.instagram.com/p/Bh69FjFB2BM/

Episode #127 Jay Brook

Jay Brook - Musician, Singer, Writer, Graphic Designer/Animator.

LISTEN HERE - http://bit.ly/127-jay-brook

I've known Jay for almost 15 years, and while we haven't been close friends we have been bouncing around the same social circles. Throughout these years I've noticed several things about Jay. Firstly, he's a great musician, this is evident from his latest project 'Ginger Snaps'. Snaps are powerful, punchy, energetic with super-memorable melodies throughout which has gained them success nationally and internationally (which Jay is too modest to agree with).

Secondly, he is honest. When we first met I'd argue we were both not sure of our place in the world and as Jay discusses in this podcast he spent a lot of time trying to be someone (as did I and arguably continue to do). One of my strengths, if you'll allow me to toot my own horn for a while, is my ability to analyse my emotions and actions. Whatever emotions I'm feeling and whatever my reaction I have, I am able to remain calm and think about why I feel this way and what I should do to resolve it. Jay appears to also do this and he has found some clarity (of which I haven't) in recent years.

Finally, being present is a problem of mine, I am constantly not focused because I am thinking about the next thing to do. Jay is good at this and continues to work on it. I'm going to try to do this more often, just one of the things I've learnt from this conversation, and also to have more conversations.

Cheers Jay, good talking.

- Josh.

Special thanks to Will Beckett for podcast editorial and production support.

Mentions, in order of appearance;

Hatt Box Hairdressing

Dapper Chaps

Job Descriptions and Insurance Premiums

Meg Amirghiasvand

Joe Rogan

Elon Musk on The Joe Rogan Experience

Steven Tyler or The Joe Rogan Experience

Neil Hudson on The Josh Astrop Podcast

Billy Locket on The Josh Astrop Podcast

Jordan Mackampa on The Josh Astrop Podcast

Mal Evans

Lal Muttock

Vo Williams

Dan Gautreau

Joel Harries

Danny Connors

Shagged by rare parrot