For those of you thinking that b–side stories has been a bit quiet recently, you were right. I had to take a break.
B-sides started about two years ago when the original show host shoulder-tapped me to take over after my career path had take a sudden turn.
I’d always loved Wellington’s vibrancy and loved the idea of radio, but I had no idea how to start or what to say, but I was really curious about all those people you see on the street every day, but we rarely get time to sit down and ask “what do you actually do”?
I also thought, if I was interested others just might be interested too.
At the time, a particular leader had just said he thought Wellington was dead. Like many others I didn’t believe that was true, but I set out to find out…..and two years later, I am still chugging, listening and sharing stories from our community, stories about our people, about what they are up to, why they are so passionate about things, why they are getting together to demonstrate, why they are fundraising, what our community groups do, why our businesses are so unique, what inspires our artists, our musicians, our change makers, rebels, innovators, movie makers, festival creators and ………..I thought the stories might run out, but it turns out that I can’t keep up. And there is no sign of this community being dead at all, quite the opposite; in fact it is astounding what is going on here.
So after two years, all the time trying to find a bit of a hand, I had to admit it was time for me to take a break. So after much deliberation, I handed in my notice, and left it to the universe. But I was gutted, as it seemed wrong that such a strong community would not be represented over the airwaves.
And then after only three hours of the official resignation email being sent, I followed one name that lead to this crew, I’m calling the new B-sides battalion. Ali Whitton, Martin Andrews, Nick Hyder and Mike O’Connor, who are all just as passionate about Wellington and keen to keep giving a voice to what is going on here, so we can all feel connected and be part of the solutions. This means you are now going to hear a few voices, and not just one.
(Jen Riches is also part of this crew just not in the photograph)
So what have I learnt over these many hours behind a microphone and under the earphones?
The act of listening. By listening we give ideas life, power, and reason. Being heard is an important part of making what we do significant. In fact listening is one of the best human traits I’ve learnt to date.
And yes our community is bustling with doers, amazing people, determined and all making a difference. And I have been so lucky to be able to listen to the incredible passion behind why people are doing what they do. And of course our people doing the solutions.
B-sides has posted 125 interviews and has had 7500 listens, so that is 7500 more sets of ears that are connected into their community who are more likely to act. Including me.
And none of this would be possible without having a community radio station to support us, so a big thanks to Access Radio , a place where the community can have their voice. And to you, the incredible people of Wellington, surely the most connected community on the planet.
Thanks for listening, you are making a world of difference.