What do burlesque dancers, paranormal activity, and Memphis wrestling have in common?
All are topics of shows that can be heard on the local podcast network OAM Audio, a new media outlet specializing in all things Memphis.
After taking a break from more than a decade of playing in and recording bands in Memphis, OAM Audio founder Gil Worth suddenly found himself without a project. During Worth's "break from music," he started to tune into different podcasts before realizing he had the equipment to start his own.
"I started to realize that I could do a podcast myself because I had recording equipment and the space to set it up, so I tried it, and the idea just grew from there," Worth said.
After his first successful podcast recorded in the shed behind his Midtown home, Worth reached out to friends about participating in other shows with him. After enlisting local graphic designer Lauren Rae Holtermann as his art director and local musician Garett Metts as his co-producer, OAM Audio was born. The podcast network (still located behind Worth's home) now features nine shows with two more coming this winter.
Some of the podcasts on the OAM Network include "Black Nerd Power," a sci-fi and tech talk show hosted by comedian Richard Jones, "901 Paranormal," which investigates haunted places in Memphis, a burlesque show called the "Naked Nerdy Podcast," and the whiskey-fueled "Records, Ruckus, and Wrasslin" that discusses wrestling, local music, and everything in between. Each show is available for download or subscription in the iTunes store or at OAMAudio.com.
As the producer of all of the shows on the OAM Network, Worth tries to stay as hands-off as possible.
"I'm already on three or four of the podcasts that we do, and I don't want to be the guy who has the equipment so he's on every show," Worth said. "I try to be supportive and say things when they need to be said, but most of the time, I back up and let people create their own shows."
By hosting such a wide variety of podcasts, Worth said OAM Audio strives to have something for everyone.
"The whole idea is to have shows that are different enough that they appeal to different types of people. We want to appeal to a wide variety of listeners and bring everyone into one place," Worth said.
As the New Year approaches, OAM Audio is taking suggestions for new podcasts in addition to launching a new fine dining review show, "Dinner and a Newbie." The podcast network is also launching a new site that should be up this week. Even as the OAM Network grows, Worth likes the idea of having the studio behind his house serve as home base for his podcasts.
"We are working on a sports show. We've also talked about doing a show on local and regional beer," Worth said. "I want to expand in the sense of us getting better equipment, and we want to insulate and finish off our studio. But I do like having it in my backyard. There's been plenty of times when we are sitting around one night with the right combination of people and decide to record a show."