WELCOME TO THE SHOW
My name is Steve Owens and I meet a lot of people; sometime in my travels, sometimes in my own home town. Several times (quite by accident), I have stumbled into what I consider to be fascinating stories. So after way too many got away, I decided to start recording them. Some of these conversations will be fascinating ONLY to me. Some will be fascinating to you too. In the end, I guess this podcast is just an excuse for me to get to travel, meet, and talk to more people. So if you are so inclined…
Walk with me, down Fascination Street!
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know comedy writing icon Hugh Fink. Hugh has written for such shows as: The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Martha and Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party, and he spent SEVEN years writing for Saturday Night Live. In this episode we chat about what it was like growing up in a Jewish family in a VERY unlikely; and UN-Jewish place. Then we jump right into how and why he got into comedy and tv writing. Hugh tells us some fun stories about working in the industry, including stories about SNL, the time he almost got David Spade beat up by Eddie Murphy, and even a phone call he had with OJ Simpson! Finally, we discuss Hugh’s classes where he teaches; both how to write comedy sketches, and how to write for late night television. I had such a great time sitting down with Hugh! Special thanks to our mutual friend Stephen Krueger for making this happen. Enjoy!
Hugh is not on social media but you can connect with him at HughFink.com
Kinky Friedman Pt. 2
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I conclude my conversation with Texas Treasure Kinky Friedman. In this episode we start off by having a toast and a shot of bourbon! Then we launch into the wonderful things that Kinky and his sister are doing with their Echo Hill Ranch; which is reviving it as a Echo Hill Camp for children of Gold Star Families and children of First Responders. Kinky tells some more stories, tells a joke or two, lets me play my favorite song from his previous album (Resurrection); and the show concludes with The Kinkster playing (LIVE) one of the songs off of his upcoming album The Poet of Motel 6. What a LEGEND.
Follow Kinky on social media:
FB: Kinky Friedman / Echo Hill Ranch (Official)
Donate to the camp: EchoHill.org
This is a RE-release of an earlier episode.
In December of 2020, I released my interview with BJ Thomas.
A short 4 months later he was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer.
BJ passed away today; May 29th, 2021 at the age of 78.
He was super nice to me and generous with his time.
Please enjoy my conversation with a true music legend.
Rest easy BJ.
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know a legend, in part 1 of my conversation with Kinky Friedman. Richard “Kinky” Friedman is a singer / songwriter, musician, author, activist, and former politician. In short…. Kinky is a LEGEND. In this episode, The Kinkster and I chat about moving to Texas when he was 1 year old because he couldn’t find work, and eventually becoming a musician. We discuss some of his songs, (including one that was very important to Nelson Mandela while he was in prison). We also talk about the current state of the music industry, and some of Kinky’s more recent albums; including his forthcoming release ‘The Poet Of Motel 6’. Then we spend some time talking about a new project where (previous guest) Mike Dawson is narrating all TWENTY of Kinky’s detective novels as audio books! Along the way, Kinky shares stories about Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, and even Abbie Hoffman; plus, Kinky lets me play a couple of his songs. This is part 1 of my conversation with the great Kinkster. Make sure you come back for part 2, and the conclusion of our talk.
Follow Kinky on social media:
FB: Kinky Friedman
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Mike Dawson. Mike is a producer for, the audio engineer for, and ‘The Voice’ of The Adam Carolla Show podcast. In this episode, we chat about where he grew up and how his parents instilled a great work ethic, how he got into the radio business, and how that all morphed into podcasting. We discuss his 2 podcasts: The Watercooler & Front Of House. We also talk about his voice over career, and a new project he is working on with the LEGEND Kinky Friedman’s detective novel series. Finally, Mike fills us in on how Covid affected his band The Smokin Kills, and their new record (releasing in Aug). When I first decided to start my podcast, Mike was the one that answered all of my questions regarding equipment, software, sound proofing, and in general helped me in any way I needed. It is a great honor to finally get Mike on the show, and I hope you enjoy it!
Follow Mike on social media:
Twit: @DawsAngeles @TheSmokinKills
Insta: @DawsAngeles @TheSmokinKills
FB: @Daws Angeles @The Smokin Kills
Podcasts: The Watercooler / Front Of House
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Alan Bishop. Alan is the Alchemist & Lead Distiller at Spirits of French Lick distillery in French Lick, Indiana. In this episode we chat about how many generations of distillers (moonshiners) are in his family, and why he decided to follow in their footsteps. He tells fun stories about getting his first still before he was even old enough to drive! Naturally we discuss how he came to work at SoFL, why he takes such pride in his job, what Indiana distilling means to him, and of course we discuss their many products. Spirits of French Lick Distillery offers a FASCINATION STREET ABSINTHE! Lastly, Alan tells us about his podcast (Distillers Talk), His book and website The Alchemist Cabinet.
Follow Alan on social media:
FB: Alan Bishop
Blog: The AlchemistCabinet.wordpress.com
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Mario Andretti. In this episode Mario and I chat about what brought his family to The United States, and how he and his twin brother Aldo got bitten by the racing bug. He shares some of his favorite memories of his driving career (which spanned from 1959 to 2000). We talk about some of the automotive innovations that started in racing and are now on every passenger car made; He also tells me what it was like to win the Daytona 500, The Indy 500, and the Formula One World Championship. Finally, we close the show out talking about his post racing businesses which include a winery, and the nationwide Andretti Indoor Carting and Games entertainment complexes. (I do challenge him to a race at the one near my house!)
Mario is a legend and a national treasure, who has made a name for himself all over the world in his sport as well as his compassion and generosity. It was a great honor to speak with 3 time US Driver of the Year, US Driver of the Quarter Century, and Driver of the Decade.
Follow Mario on social media:
FB: Mario Andretti
Mario’s website: MarioAndretti.com
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Westly Benjunas and Parker Dumont from the pop punk band Sunday Morning. In this episode we chat about what got each of them into music, and what it does for them emotionally, and mentally. We also talk about how the band got together, and what their plans are going forward. Theses guys were nice enough to let me play 2 of their songs on the show; so buckle up! Special thanks to our mutual friend, and previous guest Angela Modifica for connecting us for this episode.
Follow Sunday Morning on social media:
FB: Sunday Morning Ct
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Jolee Kasprzak. Jolee is the Marketing Director for both the French Lick Winery and Spirits of French Lick Distillery; both located in French Lick, Indiana. In this episode, we chat about how she wound up in Indiana after being born & raised in California. Next we jump right into her work at the winery and the distillery. We talk a lot about the products they offer, why they name their spirits after real people, and Jolee gives us a small lesson regarding the history of bourbon making in Indiana. While The French Lick Winery specializes in sweet wines; Spirits of French Lick Distillery makes just about every spirit you can imagine: bourbon, gin, vodka, brandy, aquavit, even absinthe.
Follow Jolee on social media:
Insta: @theTestarossa / @SpiritsOfFrenchLick
FB: Jolee Clarke.Kasprzak / Spirits Of French Lick
Take a walk with me down Fascination Street as I get to know Chris Gronkowski. Chris is the middle of 5 giant humans known as The Gronkowski Brothers. He is also the smallest. In this episode we chat about how being the smallest of the pack helped instill in him a tireless work ethic; and how his natural ‘motor’ stays running as he strives for success in all aspects of his life. We talk about growing up a Gronkowski in Buffalo, and why all of the brothers were drawn to athletics. Chris shares some fun stories about being one of these crazy kids, and we talk about his NFL career; which spanned 3 teams over 4 years. The we discuss his the many businesses he has started and continues to run, his appearance on Shark Tank, and his podcast: Gronk’d Up!
Follow Chris on social media:
Twit: @ChrisGronkowski & @IceShakerBottle
Insta: @ChrisGronkowski & @IceShaker
FB: Ice Shaker