Black History Month

I want this podcast to matter. So when I have guests on I want one of two things to happen by the end of it. First, I want people to know a lot more about the person I have been speaking with. I think I’m starting to accomplish this. For example, people only know W. Brett Wilson as a former Dragon, a billionaire and someone who has endorsed Kevin O’Leary. However, if they listen to my conversation with him I truly believe they will know more about the person behind the persona.

Secondly, I want to discuss issues that are important. For example, I recently had my brother-in-law, Earvin Venzant on. We didn’t talk about his story but rather his insights and experiences as a Black American currently living in Canada.

So it upset me when I realized I was about to record podcasts during Black History Month without having a guest on to speak on this. And believe me, I tried. And I will continue to try. Why? Because I believe it is important for me (and by extension those who listen to the podcast) to understand the experiences of Black men and women in Canada. I want to know what they experience and what they feel. I also want to understand the work that Black Lives Matter is undertaking and why it’s important. For everyone.

While it is not a proper substitution, I will share with you 6 episodes with 5 different guests.

Episode #18 was with Morgan P. Campbell. Many of you may know him as a sports writer with the Toronto Star. In this episode we discussed racism in sports (specifically baseball), football and the issue of concussions, and even steroids in professional and amateur sports.

Episode #19 was with legendary broadcaster Spider Jones. In this interesting episode we talked about: Spider’s upbringing in Detroit and Windsor during the heyday of Motown; Spider’s early career in amateur boxing; How the Spider met George Chuvalo; How the Spider ended up sparring with Muhammad Ali and helped him prepare for his first title defense against Chuvalo; Spider’s past and future radio career; Spider’s best-selling book and upcoming movie; Spider’s Believe To Achieve Organization.

Episode #22 was with community builder and activist, Segun Akinsanya. Formerly the Executive Director of Bright Future Alliance, Segun is now the founder and CEO of Currant. Currant is a co-operative looking to build sustainable businesses and communities.

For episode #40 I was joined again in studio by Morgan P. Campbell. This podcast episode was recorded just after the Rio Olympics in Brazil. However, instead of talking about how Canada fared against the world’s best, we talk about how the media covered these games.

Episode #47 was with Desmond Cole of the Toronto Star and CFRB 1010. Cole’s work focuses primarily on social justice, equity, immigration, systemic racism, and poverty.

Episode #54 was with my brother-in-law, Earvin Venzant. He’s a Black American in Canada. And Earvin had some things to get off his chest about the recent election of Donald Trump as America’s next President.

As always you can listen to current and past episodes (or even better, subscribe!) via one of the links below:

Girth Radio
MixCloud 
iTunes 
Google Play Music
Stitcher 
TuneIn
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Blue Rodeo (with special guests, The Sadies)

Last night Canadian iconic band, Blue Rodeo (with opening act, The Sadies) brought their 1000 Arms Tour to Oshawa’s Tribute Communities Centre.

While my favourite song is Diamond Mine (see above) I was introduced to an old song by Blue Rodeo called “Disappear”. A sad story, great lyrics and wonderful song. Here’s a fan’s recording from a gig in Toronto:

Here is last night’s setlist:

blue rodeo setlist oshawa

minaz asani with karim kanji

Episode #66: Salim Naran

Salim Naran and I have been friends for over 3 decades. After years of building technology solutions for companies in various industries, Salim Naran is now the co-founder and CTO of Canadian fintech startup, Borrowell.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.

Music by Afraaz Mulji.

Listen below:

Girth Radio
MixCloud 
iTunes
Google Play Music
Stitcher 
TuneIn
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Episode #65: Sulemaan Ahmed

Sulemaan Ahmed is one of the parents behind the #NoFLyListKids initiative and the Principal of Servo Annex, which provides hands-on coaching to senior executives on how to use all digital platforms, social media and mobile tools.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.

Music by Afraaz Mulji.

Listen below:

Girth Radio
MixCloud 
iTunes
Google Play Music
Stitcher 
TuneIn
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Episode #64: Mathew Ingram

Mathew Ingram is a senior writer at Fortune magazine, where he writes about media and the social web. Today we chat about the evolution of media especially with Trump as America’s president.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.

Music by Afraaz Mulji.

Listen below:

Girth Radio
MixCloud 
iTunes
Google Play Music
Stitcher 
TuneIn
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Episode #62: W. Brett Wilson

Today my guest is a former Dragon on CBC’s popular Dragon’s Den, head of Prairie Merchant Corporation and part owner of the NHL’s Nashville Predators, W. Brett Wilson.

Recorded live at Girth Radio.

Music by Afraaz Mulji.

Listen below:

Girth Radio
MixCloud 
iTunes
Google Play Music
Stitcher 
TuneIn
Pocket Casts
You can also subscribe to the podcast via RSS Feed if you’re so inclined.

Book Report: Riverside Drive by Michael Januska

I was given this book, Riverside Drive (Michael Januska) a few years ago when I visited the book publisher, Dundurn.

riverside drive

I could not wait to finish this book so I could finally read another. I’m sure that on another day this book might have captured my attention. But, alas, it did not. Mr. Januska failed to activate my imagination. And this is one of the things I look for in a fiction book.

You might like it though.