About six months ago I developed a kind of crush. No, not on a guy, or a celebrity, but on a radio show.
After reading Wallpaper* magazine list them as "One of the top 40 reasons to live in America" I started listening to The Dinner Party Download; an hour-long radio show and podcast hosted by two witty, intelligent and thoroughly lovable LA boys called Brendan and Rico.
In their own words, The Dinner Party Download is "a fast and funny hour of culture, food and conversation. In every episode you’ll learn a joke… bone up on an odd bit of history and then wash it down with a themed cocktail recipe… meet artists of note (for instance Willie Nelson, Venus Williams and Steve Martin)… have your burning etiquette questions answered by the likes of Dick Cavett or Henry Rollins… savor an emerging food trend… and hear your new favorite song. Plus, unconventional wisdom from hosts Rico Gagliano and Brendan Francis Newnam".
DPDL episodes have accompanied my 30-minute each-way bike commute to work for the past six months, and along the way I've learnt about food, history, etiquette, jokes and the inner workings and varied musical tastes of countless Hollywood stars.
I've laughed out loud. A lot. I've sighed too, and sometimes cried. It's damn good radio.
So you can imagine how excited I was when I discovered that the guys were planning a live stage show in LA when I was there last month. Oh yes. And not only that, but they had Elisabeth Moss (aka Mad Men's Peggy Olsen) and beach-lit maven, Jackie Collins lined up as their guests.
So I went. The show was held in an auditorium in Santa Monica right near where I was staying. I rocked up late but still managed to score a FRONT ROW SEAT, and then I got to hang out with the hosts, Brendan and Rico at the end (*cue fan girl geek-out). The show was smart, warm, hilarious and thoroughly entertaining. And although Peggy Olsen couldn't make it, we got Rich 'Harry Crane' Somers instead, who was insanely likable.
As a teenager I pretty much lived for radio. I first started by acting in a radio play and later, I hosted a couple of weekly shows on Warrnambool's community station, Crew FM. Every school holidays I would take a train to Melbourne and head straight to Au Go Go records, where I'd blow all of my savings on awesome new records that I could explore back home and play on my show. When I first got in touch with The Dinner Party Download guys a couple of months ago, I told Rico that listening to their show had reignited my love of being on air. There have been some deep stirrings to get back behind the mic, and after being asked on as a guest on RRR recently, I figured the universe must have been listening. Let's see what's next!