Boston, MA — June 20, 2018 — Hub & Spoke, a Boston-centric collective of independent, high-quality, story-driven podcasts, is proud to announce the addition of two new podcasts to its network.
Culture Hustlers is an interview podcast located at the intersection of art and business. BFA/MBA Lucas Spivey hosts the show from inside the Mobile Incubator, a ’57 Shasta camper towed by a ’73 Canadian ambulance. He talks with artists, performers, writers, designers, and other cultural entrepreneurs about how they hack their living by selling culture. The show’s 13-episode first season concluded in April 2017 and a second season will begin this summer. Culture Hustlers is edited and produced by Axi Berman.
Iconography is a history podcast written, edited, and produced by Charles Gustine. It’s about the icons, real and imagined, that define and are defined by the places where they arise. The show’s first season focused on icons of England, such as London Bridge, Paddington Bear, and the Guy Fawkes mask. The second season, which debuts today, is about icons of New England—beginning with Boston’s famed Citgo sign.
“Hub & Spoke is all about banding together to promote indie podcasts that grapple with big issues and ideas, or locate fascinating rabbit holes and go way down them,” says Wade Roush, host and producer of the founding Hub & Spoke podcast Soonish. “That’s why we’re so excited that Lucas, Axi, and Charles are joining us. Culture Hustlers introduces us to people who are figuring out new answers to the age-old question of how creative people can carve out a fulfilling existence. And Iconography makes the familiar seem new, by peeling back the layers of stories about famous objects and places we didn’t even know were there. We can’t wait to tell our listeners about the shows, and to introduce Hub & Spoke’s existing shows to their audiences.”
With these additions, Hub & Spoke’s roster stands at six podcasts. The three shows that banded together to found the collective in October 2017 were The Lonely Palette, an art history podcast from host and producer Tamar Avishai; Ministry of Ideas, a history and culture show from host Zachary Davis and producer Nick Andersen; and Soonish, a podcast about technology and the future. Hi-Phi Nation, a philosophy podcast from Vassar College professor Barry Lam, joined as the fourth show in the network—and the first “spoke” outside Boston—in December 2017.
Culture Hustlers is for anyone who desires to be an artist, start their own business, or be inspired by a road-trip survey of unique, ambitious endeavors. As the Culture Hustlers crew traverses the country, its audience meets a diverse group of artist-entrepreneurs and the creative ways they have bootstrapped their passions into profits. Millions of moonlighters have attempted side hustles in arts, culture, and design, only to stumble and give up. Culture Hustlers is here to provide real-life reasons to persevere.
As the son of a drifter, host Lucas Spivey was born in Minnesota and raised in Wisconsin, Alaska, Georgia, and South Carolina. He’s a longtime resident of Washington State but is currently based in Boston. A BFA/MBA hybrid and serial entrepreneur, Lucas interviews, showcases, and coaches artists to succeed in business.
Rounding out the Culture Hustlers team is editor and producer Axi Berman. He is the former host of a sports talk program called Basketball Einstein, known for dissecting the Boston-Philadelphia sports rivalry live on air. He enjoys collaborating with entrepreneurs and community leaders in multiple states, countries, and continents.
Lucas and Axi both say they're obsessed with the idea that one desperately needed response to automation and outsourcing in the US is an explosion of the arts and culture sector. They believe this change could massively increase the demand for cultural products and services, sustain an artistic middle class, and spark a reevaluation of the modern American dream. Season 1 of the podcast checks in on creators already pursuing such a lifestyle.
Culture Hustlers is available on Apple Podcasts, Soundcloud, and Stitcher, with more content to be released through the Culture Hustlers website and social media throughout the summer and beyond. Listeners are encouraged to join our dialogue about the business side of culture by leaving questions for the interviewees using the “ask-a-hustler” hotline at 978-712-8858.
Iconography began in 2016 while host Charles Gustine was living in London. “It wasn’t my first podcast,” Charles recalls, “but it feels like the culmination of everything I’ve been trying to do in six years of podcasting. Every podcast I’ve done has been about pop culture, but this one gets at what really fascinates me about film, literature, and pop music, which is that they transport you. I’d never been out of the US until I was 26, but in some shadow way, I had. Through Harry Potter, James Bond, the Beatles, some part of my mind had always been in Britain. It was a dream Britain, but it wasn’t a total lie. Harry Potter has really changed the geography of London even if he’s not real. At a place like King’s Cross, he’s become real and people actually visit him.”
T.H. Ponders, host of the art podcast Accession, says, "In my mind, there is a show where an icon is discussed with reference to its location in an incredibly cursory and uninteresting way. This? This is not that show. Charles quite literally explores every avenue, every nook and cranny, and presents the listener with a very robust and engaging story."
Season 2 sees Charles shifting his focus from England to New England, where icons like Plymouth Rock, the Salem Witch Trials, and Fenway Park will get the same treatment. Each season of Iconography focuses on a new place, drawing out the differences and similarities in the ways we adopt icons. “To do that, I really felt it was important to reach out to locals in the podcasting community so I could start hearing from other people who knew New England, which is how I found the great podcasters in Hub & Spoke,” Charles says. “I’ve been a vocal fan of the Hub & Spoke shows for awhile. I feel honored to be joining a collective with podcasters of this caliber and with this level of openness to other creators. I live and breathe podcasts, both as a listener and creator, and all this time, I’ve been looking for the conversation, the give and take.”
Hub & Spoke producers are committed to growing the audiences for all of the shows in the collective through mutual editorial support and promotion. Other hosts in the network will immediately begin promoting Culture Hustlers and Iconography in their shows.
“An essential part of Hub & Spoke, for me, has been working with and talking to Tamar, Wade, and Barry to combat the inherently lonely aspect of podcasting,” said Nick Andersen, senior producer of Ministry of Ideas. “I’m so excited to be able to expand that conversation with Charles and Lucas, and also to share their excellent podcasts with the larger Hub & Spoke universe.”