Brian Jones (Bassist, Producer, Artist, Matt Lauer’s Last Victim)

If Gallup were to measure Brian Jones’s approval rating, it would be record-breaking. Everybody loves Brian because he is hardworking, talented, funny, and politer than 99% of 24-year-old guys you will meet. He plays bass for Gwen Stefani and Muna, produces for many artists (including my bff Ren Farren), and makes up one half of the band Human Natural.

In this episode, we rant about the virtues of Kimbra for possibly a little too long, I grill Brian to recall the “best memory of his entire life”, and we dig into Brian’s Today Show interaction with Matt Lauer just days before we all learned about Matt’s sex offender desk button. Brian has so much to say about creativity, work, and how the two intersect, and he is certifiably not-braindead. Hope you enjoy! You can follow him at @brianrobertjones (Instagram)/@brianrobertjone (Twitter). You can find me at @raddiemoss (Instagram)/@maddieross17 (Twitter). Thank you for listening! -Maddie / Full episodes at www.maddieross.com/podcast

Taylor Griffin, Press Secretary for Nancy Pelosi & Former High School A Capella Co-President

Taylor has accomplished many great things in lifetime, from being one of three co-presidents of our high school a capella group (no small feat in a class with 40 girls), to being the first black woman and one of the youngest staffers to hold the position of Press Secretary for a Democratic House leader by the age of 25. She is known for her energy and laughter, her smarts, her good looks, and for being featured in Time magazine while protesting in Ferguson, MO. Turns out she is also the enemy of a few right-wing extremist groups (more on that in this episode).

In this conversation, Taylor describes what her job is like, the responsibilities of being a spokesperson for one of the most powerful people in the country, what drives her to do the work, and what brand of chocolate Nancy gave her for Christmas.

 

2. Lauren Ruth Ward (Singer, Artist, Hairdresser, Aunt, Not Your Honey)

GUYS. Lauren Ruth Ward is one of the most mesmerizing performers I've ever seen, and she is warm and lovely and invited me into her home for tea, dog snuggles and a podcast. I've gotten to know her a little bit over the course of the year since we played a show together in Nov. 2016, and I've watched her slowly but steadily take over the Los Angeles music scene. In the past I've chatted with her about music but mostly just bombarded her with requests to see pictures of her adorable niece. One of the cool things about doing a podcast is that it lets you talk to your friends in a different way than you normally would, and Lauren is somebody who is worth getting to know. 

In this podcast, we talk about moving from Baltimore to LA, transitioning from a singer/songwriter to fronting a band, why competition between artists/particularly females is a myth, what to say when people write you off ("what do you want me to feel when you say that to me" is my new forever go-to, thanks Lauren!). I loved getting to learn a bit more about how this Scorpio's brain works- did you know she is one of those people who remembers the date of every significant interaction she has. Maybe I'm braindead? How do people do that? I can't even remember my dog's birthday. 

Thanks for listening! You can subscribe to Everybody's Braindead on all of the podcast platforms, or listen at www.maddieross.com/podcast 

Lauren Ruth Ward: @laurenruthward (Instagram)/@laurenruthward (Twitter)

Maddie Ross: @raddiemoss (Instagram)/@maddieross17 (Twitter)

1. Annie Krabbenschmidt (Love Is A Softball Field Crossover Episode!)

Annie is a single female living in Durham, NC. She is currently spending her 24th year of life getting her Master's degree in Public Policy at Duke and dominating the local queer Tinder scene. She's my best friend from high school, the co-host of my other podcast "Love Is A Softball Field", and a talented comedian and writer.

I promised I wouldn't call this episode "Annie Is So Brave", although pretty early on in the episode she admits to having been on the receiving end of the world's most backhanded compliment more than once. We talk about what it's like for Annie to be pursuing her degree while also searching for creative outlets and submitting her writing to various publications. Anyone who is creative understands the mountain of despair that must be climbed to continue on in the face of rejection, and Annie lets us in on her process with humor and grace. I love her and learn so much from her every time we speak, so I hope you do too! Damn, it really sucks having to write my own podcast description (if you want to see some of her more skillfully crafted episode summaries, feel free to check out our Love Is A Softball Field podcast anywhere podcasts are available). Follow Annie at @krabbypatty415 (Instagram)/@krabbypatty93 (Twitter). You can find me at @raddiemoss (Instagram)/@maddieross17 (Twitter). Thanks so much for listening. Love you all! -Maddie