This Next Song’s About - A Songwriter’s Podcast
“Making Queer Pop Music” ft. Aaron Is Your Friend

“Making Queer Pop Music” ft. Aaron Is Your Friend

June 23, 2021

Today, as we continue to celebrate Pride month my guest is Aaron Is Your Friend. Aaron is Your Friend is the project of LA-based singer, songwriter and producer Aaron Lindenberg. Aaron and I met on the New York scene a couple of years ago at a Sofar Sounds show and I really enjoyed his music and his energy so I wanted to introduce him to you on the show and we take a listen to his song "Self".

Aaron and I get deep in this episode, we talk about music releases, queer culture, gender norms and presentation as artists and we also take a listen to his song “self”. This was an interesting one for me as Aaron flipped some of my questions back to me, so it felt a lot less like an interview and more like a conversation between two friends who happen to be artists as well.

Inspired by electronic pop, R&B and dance music, Aaron makes soulful, polished pop songs about heartbreak, self love and new love. He released his debut album "Break My Own Heart" in 2020, which processes heartbreak through glittery house anthems and textured R&B, while his most recent EP, "Emotional" exorcised the demons of 2020 over warm hip-hop grooves. He is currently working on a string of larger-than-life pop singles about boys.

You can follow him @aaronisyourfriend and on Spotify here:


At the start of this episode you will hear a clip from "Tameless", a track co-written & co-produced by April Rose Gabrielli & KULICK for an incredible new documentary "Not The Science Type".
The film will make its debut during the Tribeca Film Festival in June 2021. The film follows four inspiring female Scientists who are changing the world through their ground breaking work in a field dominated by men.

Listen to the full song here:

“From Broadway to Songwriting” ft. J.Breckenridge

“From Broadway to Songwriting” ft. J.Breckenridge

June 16, 2021

Josh Breckenridge, is perhaps better known for his Broadway accolades, most recently starring in Come From Away. During the Broadway closure as a result of the pandemic J. wasted no time in writing and producing his debut album "Monotony" with producer James Frazee (Patti Smith, Sharan Van Etten, Loudon Wainright III, Bacon Brothers) As J. Breckenridge, the new musical artist with a pop-soul vibe, he has just released his fourth single, “Not Forgiving You”  a deceptively lighthearted modern pop song but the number is really a way to deal with a past abusive relationship (please note the sensitive nature of the topic discussed and please take care of yourself)

J. joins me on the show to talk about his single, Pride month, the new movement of openly gay male pop artists and how he is feeling about returning to Broadway in September as theaters re-open.

Josh mentions  to buy tickets for the streaming of his performance in A.C.T.'s theatre production of Armistead Maupin's "Tales of The City".

At the start of this episode you will hear a clip of a brand new track called "My Oh My" from North Carolina based Americana artist, Kevin Daniel. "My Oh My" is the second release off of Kevin Daniel's forthcoming album, 'Been Here Before'. The song was co-written with Ashlee Joy, formerly of Charlotte, NC-based band Matrimony and features Ashlee on vocals.

Head to Spotify to listen to Kevin Daniel: 

“Redefining Expectations as a Queer, Afro-Latina Vocalist” ft. Sharisse Fransisco

“Redefining Expectations as a Queer, Afro-Latina Vocalist” ft. Sharisse Fransisco

June 9, 2021

Continuing our artist profiles for #Pride, today's guest is Sharisse Fransisco. She is a Queer, Afro-Latina  singer-songwriter and Vocalist, she performs as herself but also as the lead vocalist for the all-female punk soul band Top Queens. She deeply believes in the importance of intentionality in the messages we share with the world as artists; utilizing music and art for catharsis, to invoke emotions, but also to share our authentic truths, connect, and inspire unity and change. Sharisse is also a Mindfulness and Mental Health Advocate. 

Sharisse tells me about her latest release “I am” and how she wrote it as a mantra to herself and others and we also talk about the expectations people have of her as a vocalist as a black woman.


If you liked today's episode follow us and leave a comment or a review!

“Being A Social Justice Songwriter” ft. Crys Matthews

“Being A Social Justice Songwriter” ft. Crys Matthews

June 2, 2021

Have you ever wondered how to write social justice songs? How to get over your discomfort? In this episode, I am discussing social justice songwriting with my guest, D.C. based social justice songwriter Crys Matthews.

Already hailed as “the next Woody Guthrie,” Crys Matthews is among the brightest stars of the new generation of social justice music-makers. She is made for these times and, with the release of her new, hope-fueled, love-filled social justice album Changemakers, Matthews hopes to take her place alongside some of her heroes in the world of social-justice music.

Crys tells us about her philosophy in life of “sing don’t shout” as a way of changing hearts and minds and having difficult conversations.

Crys's album Changemakers is out on Spotify now and you can follow her @crysmatthews

At the start of the episode you will hear a clip from singer-songwriter, Kaylyn Marie. Have you ever had a moment where someone described you positively to another and you thought, "Wow. Is that really how they see me?" because you'd never describe yourself with that much enthusiasm, admiration, grace, or love? Her third and last “Forget Me Not” single titled, “Finally”, embodies the first moment you catch a glimpse — and if you're lucky, begin the habit — of seeing yourself as kindly as those who love you and believe in you.


“How to Boost Your Social Media Presence” ft. Gabe Ekemezie

“How to Boost Your Social Media Presence” ft. Gabe Ekemezie

May 26, 2021

Have you ever thought about whether you're "doing it right" with social medial? Or why is social media SO important for musicians and anyone with a brand, which social media platform is right for you; and how can you optimize your social media and build a following?

My guest Gabe Ekemezie and I discuss all of those things and aim to help you tighten up your social media strategy. Gabe is the founder of Unplugged Kingdom LLC, specializing in online business strategy and social media marketing techniques to help brands unlock their highest potential while making a positive impact on the world. Currently, he works at a digital transformation agency, where he empowers companies and brands to optimize their revenue and maximize their exposure in the marketplace. 

Instagram/TikTok: @its_gabe3

At the beginning of the episode you will hear a clip from singer-songwriter Elizabeth Wyld. Her new album "Quiet Year" is out now everywhere and this song Hudson is from her debut album. You can follow her on Spotify or on social media @Elizabethwyldmusic

“Creating Iconic Images” ft. Music Photographer Shervin Lainez

“Creating Iconic Images” ft. Music Photographer Shervin Lainez

May 12, 2021

Shervin made his name as a portrait music photographer on the New York music scene over the last decade and has become one of the most sought after photographers in the industry. Having started with no formal photography training, he worked his way up the ladder and has since photographed musicians like Billie Eilish, Lizzo, Wilco, Regina Spector, Ingrid Michaelson, Fleet Foxes, Walk the moon, Sara Bareilles and many more...

I caught up with him to find out how he went from no photography background to taking iconic images for some of the most exciting new artists across the world. We also talk about what aspiring artists should consider when creating their brand and images.

If you want to join our Facebook group, you can find out who the next guest will be and post a question that I might just ask during the show. Search "This Next Song's About - Inner Circle" on Facebook and join our community of artists and songwriters. 

“How to deal with Self-Doubt & Rejection” ft. music coach Lisa McEwen

“How to deal with Self-Doubt & Rejection” ft. music coach Lisa McEwen

May 5, 2021

In today’s episode I am chatting with songwriter and mindfulness coach, Lisa McEwen. Lisa is originally from Canada and made her way down to Nashville and  had success signing with BMG as a staff writer, penning songs for major labels and artists and is now setting out to help other artists achieve their goals as a coach and consultant. In this episode we chat about Self-doubt, determination, pivoting and how to focus on who we are as artists and individuals to achieve our goals and find success.

If you're a songwriter out there who sometimes struggles with self-belief and wonders whether pursuing music is the right thing, this episode is for you!

We cover self-doubt, rejection, determination, mindfulness, resilience and how to focus on what makes you unique!

More details on Lisa here: 

Please rate and leave us a review if you enjoyed today's episode!

Producer’s Perspective: Top 5 Tips for heading into the Studio ft. Katie Buchanan

Producer’s Perspective: Top 5 Tips for heading into the Studio ft. Katie Buchanan

April 21, 2021

Today's episode is a special "Producer's Perspective" episode, part of our new format to help you develop as an artist.

I take a look inside the mind of a studio producer to help you get an idea of what you should expect when you’re heading in to record, whether you consider yourself a seasoned pro, or a newcomer, I promise this is one you'll want to listen to.

Today’s guest is singer, songwriter and record producer, Katie Buchanan. Katie studied music at NYU’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music. She works across all pop genres: from singer/songwriter to electronic inflected bops. But ultimately, she focuses on the artist and the songs. She has produced hundreds of tracks and garnered millions of plays, but cares most about creating an open, collaborative, and comfortable studio environment. Katie has come up with her top 5 tips for artists to consider before heading into the studio. Now, this doesn’t matter if you’re a newbie in the studio, or someone who’s been recording music for a while, this is a great episode and I hope it gets you thinking about your next project in a different way…

Tops Tips discussed in the episode include...

  1. Producer vs Engineer
  2. Roles and Responsibilities
  3. Budget talk
  4. Royalties
  5. Finding the right Producer - FOR YOU

You can find Katie at or on instagram @katie_buchanan.

Her new song West (played at the beginning of the episode) is available now.

“Finding My Strength and Resilience” ft. Jarreau Williams

“Finding My Strength and Resilience” ft. Jarreau Williams

April 7, 2021

Around the DMV, Jarreau (juh-ROW) Williams is known as the "man with the golden pipes.” The Alexandria, VA native and 8x Wammie nominated and 3x Wammie winner  is a consummate showman and charismatic front-man. Jarreau’s professional credits include backing 4-time Grammy Award winner Michael Buble, praise and worship with President Barack Obama and the First Family, as well as performing the National Anthem for thousands in DC’s most prominent professional sports arenas. 

I chatted with Jarreau about his new single "Shoulda Known Better" and the process for re-writing the song for a more dancy remix, we have a good giggle about some of his clever lyrics and he also talks to me about his advocacy for mental health within the Black community. 

You can find Jarreau....


Instagram: @iamjarreauwilliams

Exclusive Music Video Premiere “At Work” ft Kaylyn Marie

Exclusive Music Video Premiere “At Work” ft Kaylyn Marie

March 17, 2021

In this episode, I chat with Kaylyn Marie, one of my best friends and one of the best musicians I've ever seen. Kaylyn is a singer-songwriter-guitarist, bandleader, and actress with over 16 years of performing experience from national TV to local venues. Her solo work has been described as “Soulful Americana” echoing writing and vocal traits of Sara Bareilles and Laura Marling. 

She is releasing music from her sophomore EP “Forget Me Not” from January to June 2021. She has won a Kennedy Center Award of Excellence in the Arts, was a finalist on American Idol, starred in a leading role in a new musical titled “Music City” from the producers of Hadestown & Dear Evan Hansen, she has completed multiple artist residencies in New York City (Rockwood, Joe’s Pub, Pete’s Candy store) recorded 3 records, carried a lead role on a Lifetime TV film, and performing as a Protest singer in Steven Spielberg’s “The Post”. But for all of her accomplishments and achievements she is one of my best friends, as a result of this podcast actually, we first met in podcast number 4 if you care to dig through the archives. She is one of the most lovely people I’ve ever met and she has such a unique ability to connect with people both as a human and as a performer. 

This episode was recorded as a live podcast on March 3rd to celebrate the launch of the new season of the show and I recommend you listen to this episode and then go and check out the video for what I hope will be an immersive experience for her new single “At Work” here: 

If however you prefer to watch this whole interview as a video, you can do so now, head over to the Facebook page here:

Most of the pods are not live, but the unedited videos are shared exclusively to the Facebook group here: 

You can follow Kaylyn here:

@kaylynmariemusic on instagram and on Spotify here: 

“Embracing my Kenyan roots in my artist persona” ft. Esbalu

“Embracing my Kenyan roots in my artist persona” ft. Esbalu

March 10, 2021

In this episode Stevie sits down with artist Esabalu (Es-a-BA-lu) to take a visual look at her video Wildfire.

You should check out the video for Wildfire here and come back to listen to the episode: 

You can also watch the full unedited interview in our Facebook group here:  

We also talk about her journey to finding her new moniker as EsaBalu, embracing her Kenyan roots and taking time as a musician to process the events of the Black Lives Matter movement through storytelling and songwriting with her single “Say Their Names”. 

Esabalu is an LA based artist with Kenyan roots bringing her listeners an earthy and grounded vocal that bellows from the center of the earth. Her debut single, "Wildfire”, out now, is an exciting journey to the past about forgetting your cares and diving head first into steamy summer love. As a graduate of Berklee College of Music, Esabalu found herself working on the production and engineering side of the business right out of school but found her way back to stages throughout New York (Saturday Night Live w/ Kacey Musgraves, Jimmy Fallon w/ Bastille and Wallows, and Seth Meyers) and now the West coast! Esabalu's audio engineering background has really come in handy during quarantine, with one of her latest at home projects landing her a placement in the two most recent national @ultabeauty ads, airing now. Vocal arrangement, original composition, and background vocalist are only a few of the things that define this powerhouse vocalist.



“Creating My Signature Solo Sound” ft. Kyle Lacy

“Creating My Signature Solo Sound” ft. Kyle Lacy

March 3, 2021

For the first episode of a brand new season of TNSA, Stevie kicks it all off with inimitable rockabilly musician, Kyle Lacy.

Originally from Atlanta, Georgia but now an NYC transplant, Kyle's unmistakable sound and energy will have you chair-dancing at the very least! Kyle notes his influences from the 50s and 60s sounds of blues, soul and rock from Sam Cooke and Aretha Franklin to the swing of Brian Setzer. Kyle tours tirelessly and his band deliver the kind of Rock'n'Roll excitement that the music world has mourned for decades. “The Road To Tomorrow” is his first Full-Length Album and is out now on Dala Records. 

Stevie and Kyle discuss everything from how he produced his album to have an authentic live sound with Billy Aukstik (Sharon Jones, Mark Ronson, Charles Bradley), how he writes with a band and sometimes on the spot in the studio, to the positive outlook he has taken on the pandemic and what he's learned from it as an artist. 

Kyle's Spotify playlist mentioned in the episode is here:

And you can join the TNSA Inner Circle Facebook groups for early-access un-edited interviews, exclusive offers, and the chance to hear new music and connect with other artists here: 

This Next Song’s About Season 2 Trailer

This Next Song’s About Season 2 Trailer

February 7, 2021

Stevie Manns, musician and host, talks with some of most exciting songwriters and music experts to take a closer look behind the scenes of the music industry. Think SongExploder meets Tiny Desk!

Season 2 launches March 3rd 2021, subscribe now and check out all of the past episodes and get ready for a brand new season with exciting new artists, "how to" episodes, live shows and much more!

Follow us on instagram:

Join our mailing list for exclusive behind the scenes clips and interviews here: 

“Writing Up A Storm” Ft. Jacob McCurdy

“Writing Up A Storm” Ft. Jacob McCurdy

September 9, 2020

Mustachioed Mainer, Jacob McCurdy, blends Folk, Rock, and Roots into his very own brand of Indie-Americana. Love, heartbreak, joy, and the perfect moment; all pitched against the lush backdrop of honest harmony.

On July 24th, McCurdy released For the Weekend (FTW), his first fully produced solo EP in 9 years. Normally filling his time with weddings and pub gigs with his cover band The Dapper Gents or playing bass with The Johnny Clay Shanks band, McCurdy started focusing on writing new original material in the beginning of 2020. With the extra time on his hands due to the current pandemic, he’s been writing up a storm.

First up are the five songs off the new EP comprised mostly of songs related to love (maybe more so about heartbreak). With plans for a full length album to be released in 2021, he shows no signs of stopping. With numerous virtual co-writing sessions a week, McCurdy has thrown himself into a full-time schedule of collaboration. 

“The Night You Wrote That Song: The Songs of Mickey Newbury” Ft. Gretchen Peters

“The Night You Wrote That Song: The Songs of Mickey Newbury” Ft. Gretchen Peters

August 19, 2020

Gretchen Peters joins us once again on the show to talk about her new album... For two decades, Gretchen Peters has been one of Nashville’s most beloved and respected artists.

“If Peters never delivers another tune as achingly beautiful as ‘On A Bus To St. Cloud,'” People Magazine wrote, “she has already earned herself a spot among country’s upper echelon of contemporary composers.”

Inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in October 2014 by singer-songwriter Rodney Crowell, who called her “both a songwriter and a poet (who) sings as beautifully as she writes,” and said her song “The Matador”, “moved me so greatly, I cried from the soles of my feet”, Peters has accumulated accolades as a songwriter for artists as diverse as Etta James, Bonnie Raitt, The Neville Brothers, Patty Loveless, George Strait, Bryan Adams and Faith Hill. Her song “Independence Day”, recorded by Martina McBride, won a CMA Song of the Year award in 1995. She has been nominated for 2 Grammys (“Independence Day/Martina McBride, “You Don’t Even Know Who I Am”/Patty Loveless), a Golden Globe (“Here I Am”/Bryan Adams), and numerous other awards.

Her 2015 album, ‘Blackbirds’ was awarded International Album of the Year and Song of the Year by the UK Americana Association. In 2015, The Telegraph named her one of the greatest 60 female singer-songwriters of all time. Her latest album, The Night You Wrote That Song: The Songs of Mickey Newbury, is a loving tribute to another Hall of Fame songwriter and a profound influence on Peters’ own writing.


“Producing an Album From New York City to the Rocky Mountains” ft. Megan Burtt

“Producing an Album From New York City to the Rocky Mountains” ft. Megan Burtt

August 12, 2020

Rocky Mountain raised, and international touring artist, Megan Burtt is a decorated performing songwriter. Since her sophomore release “The Bargain”, she has performed at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheater, been featured with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, toured Europe, toured across the US, and supported artist like Gregory Alan Isakov, Chris Isaak, Leann Rimes and Marc Cohn. Guitar World calls band leader, Megan Burtt “Pulsing, powerful and lovely. Burtt gracefully manipulates words and melody into a sultry delight.” Burtt is a Rocky Mountain Folks Fest, Kerrville, and Westword Songwriter of the Year. She is currently working on her fourth and fifth full-length albums One with with New York City with producer Louis Cato (Stephen Colbert house band, Stay Human) and the other on her home turf in Colorado.

Virtual ‘In The Round’ series with Rockwood Music Hall ft. Megan Burtt, Ben Grace and Wild Whispers

Virtual ‘In The Round’ series with Rockwood Music Hall ft. Megan Burtt, Ben Grace and Wild Whispers

August 5, 2020

NYAC teamed up with New York's famous venue Rockwood Music Hall to put on our first virtual "In The Round" series. Our artists include...

Ben Grace: Now based in San Diego, but born and raised in Sydney, Ben’s exodus from the beliefs and structures of his working class Christian childhood weaves poignantly through his lyrics, revealing itself in his deep commitment to justice and willingness to call forward the darker themes in American politics. With the lens of an outsider and the bold voice of a witness, Ben writes to challenge and disrupt our comfort with the status quo. @bengracemusic

Megan Burtt: Rocky Mountain raised, and international touring artist, Megan Burtt is a decorated performing songwriter. Since her sophomore release “The Bargain”, she has performed at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheater, been featured with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra, toured Europe, toured across the US, and supported artist like Gregory Alan Isakov, Chris Isaak, Leann Rimes and Marc Cohn. @meganburtt

Megan Leigh: Known for her angelic voice, perfectly blended harmonies, and engaging rhythms, the up-and-coming female singer songwriter from Western Maryland has been performing to audiences in the Washington DC area and all over the country. @meganleighmusic

“Far From Home” Ft. Aubrie Sellers

“Far From Home” Ft. Aubrie Sellers

July 22, 2020

Aubrie Sellers released Far From Home - the follow up to her critically acclaimed album New City Blues - in February 2020.

Rolling Stone called the record “halting and poignant” and Paste Magazine says ”she’s an honest storyteller with a singular personality. She can both float in on a cloud of love songs and crank out existential country-rock.” Having previously toured with Chris Stapleton, Miranda Lambert, and Robert Earl Keen among others, she is set to head out on the CMT Next Women of Country Tour with Tanya Tucker in 2021. When she’s not on the road, Aubrie spends her time supporting non-profits and organizations like Girls to the Moon, Feminist Camp, Imagination Library, and World Vision and promoting her love of reading with her book club Biblioclique.

Her new EP of cover songs, World On Fire, comes out in August 7th 2020.

“Planning Ahead” ft. CBS Business Analyst Jill Schlesinger

“Planning Ahead” ft. CBS Business Analyst Jill Schlesinger

July 8, 2020

Jill Schlesinger joins Steph to demystify the current economic situation and will seek to provide some practical advice to help.

Join us live on Facebook to watch these lockdown podcasts as they happen, Wednesday nights at 8PM EST on our facebook page:

Or join our Inner Circle page for music fans and artists alike!

Jill Schlesinger, CFP®, is the Emmy-nominated and Gracie Award Winning Business Analyst for CBS News. Jill appears on CBS radio and television stations nationwide covering the economy, markets, investing and anything else with a dollar sign. She translates complicated business and economic news into understandable, relatable topics for everyday viewers and listeners. She is a weekly guest on NPR’s “Here and Now” and writes the nationally syndicated column “Jill on Money” for Tribune Media Services.

Jill’s first book, The Dumb Things Smart People Do With Their Money: Thirteen Ways to Right Your Financial Wrongs, was published in February 2019 by Ballantine Books.

Resources Jill mentioned in the book include:

The Dumb Things Smart People Do With Their Money - Jill Schlesinger Get Your Financial Life Together - Beth Kobliner Worth It, Not Worth It - Jack Otter

BOOK CLUB Ft. Untamed by Glennon Doyle with Erica Swindell, Common Jack & Kaylyn Marie

BOOK CLUB Ft. Untamed by Glennon Doyle with Erica Swindell, Common Jack & Kaylyn Marie

July 1, 2020

JUNE BOOK CLUB! Our second installment of Book Club featuring Glennon Doyle's runaway best-selling book "Untamed"

Join us live on Facebook to watch these lockdown podcasts as they happen, Wednesday nights at 8PM EST on our facebook page:

Or join our Inner Circle page for music fans and artists alike!

Steph is joined by musicians and songwriters Kaylyn Marie, Erica Swindell and John Gardner (aka Common Jack) to discuss the book and how this affects us as women, but also as artists.

In her most revealing and powerful memoir yet, the activist, speaker, bestselling author, and “patron saint of female empowerment” (People) explores the joy and peace we discover when we stop striving to meet others’ expectations and start trusting the voice deep within us.

“Untamed will liberate women—emotionally, spiritually, and physically. It is phenomenal.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, author of City of Girls and Eat Pray Love.

There is a voice of longing inside each woman. We strive so mightily to be good: good partners, daughters, mothers, employees, and friends. We hope all this striving will make us feel alive. Instead, it leaves us feeling weary, stuck, overwhelmed, and underwhelmed. We look at our lives and wonder: Wasn’t it all supposed to be more beautiful than this? We quickly silence that question, telling ourselves to be grateful, hiding our discontent—even from ourselves.

Subscribe to get some exclusive content from some of our favourite artists and notifications of who our upcoming guests are!

“Share The Mic” Ft Mishti, Kofy Brown, Be Steadwell, Akie Bermiss

“Share The Mic” Ft Mishti, Kofy Brown, Be Steadwell, Akie Bermiss

June 24, 2020

This special episode is dedicated to showcasing our POC artist community, Steph will be taking a step back behind the scenes while our guest host, NYAC alum Mishti, takes the hot seat inviting our artist guests to share some songs and their experiences with us for this one-hour special.

Our artists include....

MISHTI A singer-songwriter-guitarist with the lyricism of Jeff Buckley and the badassness of Slash demands the ear of any listener with her fresh take on post-pop rock music. While finishing touches of her debut EP (produced by Cyndi Lauper’s guitarist Alex Nolan) are fine-tuned, Mishti continues to write songs for the unrequited and fantasize the next performance: “I want to create music that transforms people’s moods the same way music I love transforms mine... and changes my life in those 4 minutes… and then ‘replay’.”

KOFY BROWN Kofy Brown, an Oakland, CA musician, singer and songwriter has been a pioneering force in the Bay Area’s hip-hop soul / rock scene for the last couple of decades. Leading her band on tour paving the way for other indie artist to trek forth, the Kofy Brown Band have spread the gospel of Brown’s unique style of soul, rock, funk and more all-over North America, Canada and Europe. Kofy writes, and leads her own band the KBB (Kofy Brown Band), and is the bassist / singer for Sistas in the Pit and drummer / singer for Skip the Needle. Her new release, Child of Providence, on her own indie label Simba Music, is Kofy Brown’s 10th release which is available on all electronic formats/

AKIE BERMISS Akie is a Brooklyn native raised in a musical household full of jazz and politics fueled by his former- activist mom and dad. He began singing in church, moved it to school for a while, enroute becoming somewhat of a musical chameleon. His raucous, guttural and soulful vocals are a delectable fusion of Donny Hathaway and Tom Waits. He’s equally adept singing neo-soul, funk, contemporary jazz, alternative rock, and hip hop. Over the past half a dozen years, he has become a visible contributor to the fertile Brooklyn music scene as a musician, songwriter and vocalist, notably becoming a full-time member of New York's beloved band Lake Street Dive.

BE STEADWELL Be Steadwell is a musician, filmmaker, storyteller from Washington DC. In her live performances, she utilizes looping, vocal layering and beat boxing to compose her songs on stage. Be's original music features earnest lyricism, and Affirming LGBTQ content.​ Be has shared stages with fellow artist Activists Big Freedia, Nona Hendryx, Nikky Finney and Gina Yashere. In 2017 Be sang at The Women's March on the National Mall behind Maxwell and Janelle Monae in Toshi Reagon's Big Lovely Band.

“Nashville, Creating During Lockdown” Ft. Sonia Leigh

“Nashville, Creating During Lockdown” Ft. Sonia Leigh

June 17, 2020

Sonia Leigh joins Steph live from Nashville to talk about creating music during lockdown in Music City.

Join in the conversation on the live podcast Wednesday nights at 8PM EST on our facebook page!

Sonia Leigh made her country catapult on Zac Brown's Southern Ground Records in 2011 with “My Name Is Money”. Her more recent independent leaps span genres of country, pop, alt-rock, and hiphop. Her 2018 full length release titled Mad Hatter showcases her versatility with easy flow. Recent single releases “Digging Graves” and “Give You Love” dive deeper into pop flavors. No surprise to her fans, musical fluidity have always been a catalyst for creativity. She's penned hit songs, featured on hit television shows, video games, and rapidly gaining a name in the sync world. toured the world with the likes of Eric Church, Melissa Etheridge, BONES, Zac Brown Band and legends such as Willie Nelson, Loretta Lynn, and Joan Jett.

In 2019 she caught the eye of BMG New York and quickly signed on as songwriter. Her conviction can hush a room and shake the walls with her raw and raspy delivery. Sonia Leigh squeezes every drop out of the stage and leaves the crowd shouting for more.

“Art That Serves” Ft. Matt Butler

“Art That Serves” Ft. Matt Butler

June 10, 2020

Our good friend Matt Butler joins us to discuss the mission for his music and how serving others gives both him and his art a purpose through his non-profit the Just One Foundation, and he plays his song 'Just One'.

Redemption and hope through song sums it up when I think of Matt Butler” says Kevin Lyman, the founder of the legendary Vans Warped Tour, who hosted Butler as one of the few solo acoustic acts on the Tour’s final cross country run in 2018; Matt was back as a mainstage performer at the Warped Anniversary show the following year. In the time before and after, Butler’s been relentlessly on the road performing at everything from stadiums to state prisons.

Butler’s latest single ‘Been Gone So Long’ is a hauntingly sparse acoustic lament ripped straight from the experience of performing over 150 shows in correctional facilities across the United States. Butler has been no less active during the quarantine and recently released a short documentary film titled ‘Mother’s Day Miracle’ in conjunction with The Just One Foundation, a 501c3 non profit he founded in 2018. The film has already reached thousands across social media and a subsequently launched fundraiser met its goal of $10k in only 4 days.

Butler was also a featured performer for the UnCancelled Music Festival as well as a panel speaker for the 320 Festival, the world’s first virtual mental health summit. His latest single, ‘Justice or Mercy’ is scheduled for a June 19th release.

Mother's Day Miracle short film

“Your Music As a Business” ft. Eli Lev

“Your Music As a Business” ft. Eli Lev

June 3, 2020

Continuing our live podcast series, rising singer-songwriter and global citizen Eli Lev joins us to talk about being a musician-entrepreneur and how he has taken his show on the virtual road with all of the systems he already had in place before lockdown!

Whether it’s an in-person performance, or during a livestream show, Eli captivates the audience with a storyteller approach to stage banter through tales of his travel, witty asides, and engaging commentary. His infectious musicality, commitment to deep grooves, and playful charisma foster an immersive experience for the audience that moves bodies and opens hearts.

“The most meaningful thing for me is being able to express through my music what I’ve always felt about humanity. I want to bring people in, make them feel special, and break down the walls that keep us apart.”

Join our inner circle to connect with other artists or find some new music:

Watch our podcasts as they happen Wednesday nights 8PM EST here:

Resources Eli mentions during this episode: Michael Walker's Modern Musician Program Cari Cole Celebrity Vocal Coach Ariel Hyatt's Cyber PR Courses Indepreneur Podcast and Artist Courses Ari's Take Academy Spotify Course

“Serving My Community under lockdown” ft. Heather Mae

“Serving My Community under lockdown” ft. Heather Mae

May 26, 2020

Continuing our live podcast series, Heather Mae will join us to talk about how she’s been serving her community during this crisis. The last time we spoke just before the start of lockdown she said “right now, I’ve got to get to work. My community needs me” and Heather has been rolling up her sleeves and connecting with her fans everywhere, she’ll be telling us all about. And who knows, she may even play a few songs...

Unfazed by what a typical pop artist today is “supposed” to look or sound like, Heather Mae, an award-winning songwriter whose evocative vocals and rhythmic piano style call to mind artists like Stevie Nicks and Sara Bareilles, creates intoxicating music that tackles complex topics surrounding mental health, LGBTQ+ issues, self-love, racial injustice, social inequality, and women’s rights. Inspired by her own personal experiences and identities - a queer, plus size woman living with Bipolar Disorder - Mae is an on-fire musical and emotional experience. In her most sonically adventurous project yet, GLIMMER (Sept 2019) - her second produced record and first full length album - breaks the stigma surrounding mental health, reminding us all that we are not alone.

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