The latest project to come to the Tropicult “newsroom” 😉, is a high-quality production called The Florida Room. The first episode dropped this past March and can be viewed on Youtube. The second episode will feature Miami band Jaialai. Jaialai has been making headlines after their appearance at the 2019 iiipoints festival and is set to release their first full-length album on the 29th of this month.
Digital engagement platforms like Snapchat have made it easier to broadcast, and as a result, more and more people are getting comfortable sharing on camera. It seems like everyone these days is starting either a Youtube channel or a podcast. Fast Company recently reported that Apple just topped 50 billion all-time downloads and streams. If you’ve been thinking about getting your slice of this content pie, the team from The Florida Room shared their tips with Tropicult in this exclusive interview.
Ian Mercel (audio engineer and mixer), Nick County (host, producer), Juan Ledesma (producer) and Danny Gonzalez (host, producer). Not photographed is Alexa Wolman (executive producer). Photo taken by Rodrigo Cayo
Meet the guys:
Nick County is a journeyman songwriter who has spent time living in Rural Pennsylvania, New York, Texas, Puerto Rico, and Miami with lots of rambles in between. He specializes in tropical country tunes of hopelessness and despair best exemplified by his forthcoming release “Nick County & The Rainbow Smoke: Cocorico Simpatico Corazon on Public Works Records. He currently lives in Little Havana with his beautiful girlfriend, and a stray cat named Mulligan. In addition to making music, he enjoys reading, gambling, and birdwatching. Danny Kokomo was born and raised in Miami, FL and currently lives in Little Havana. He plays in a traveling rock n roll band called, Jacuzzi Boys, eats an unhealthy amount of dessert, spends too much money on Jukeboxes and thinks KISS would have been a better name for The New York Dolls and vice versa. Juan Ledesma is a musician and an artist. He was born in Auckland, NZ, raised in Lima, Peru and currently lives and works in Miami, FL.
1. The first episode was so good. I absolutely loved it. What tips would you give to someone trying to do something similar?
Nick: I would say put lots of thought and preparation into the front end, find the right team, and always be on the lookout for the best talent.
Danny: I’d say don’t try it. We crush the competition.
Juan: Don’t skimp on sound quality. Give yourself more planning time than you think you will need. And feed your crew, it’s good for relationship building.
2. I’m super excited for your second episode, you got Jaialai, who I interviewed last year before their House of Creatives Festival appearance. How do you get interviews with artists and bands?
Nick: A sincere personal outreach is the best route. If you just send indiscriminate blasts to as many people as you can, you’re likely to get less favorable results. Also, go see them live and engage with them in person on their turf.
Danny: Nick, Juan and I all have our own bands, so naturally we’ve met lots of folks that play music… It’s easy to ring up friends.
Juan: It’s good to remember that musicians who are releasing are usually already in the spirit of sharing something about themselves. If you give them an opportunity to do so in their own terms not only will they be excited to do it but it can be a really great time for everyone involved.
3. It seems like every other day someone is asking me about YouTube. What is the most challenging part of producing a show like this?
Nick: I think with any production where there are several moving parts, you always have to be ready for things to go wrong. Having experienced people you trust in different roles can help mitigate the anxiety when these snafus inevitably arise.
Danny: Accommodating everyone’s schedule and making sure we have the funds to do it right.
Juan: Logistics are always the challenge. There are always details about sound production & filming that are easy to miss but make all the difference in the world. That being said making due once the cameras are rolling is the fun part.
4. What are you’re ultimate “do’s” and “don’ts”?
Nick: Do have fun, don’t expect to make money.
Danny: Do: Keep everyone happy with food & snacks / Don’t: Party too hard the night before.
5. You gents have a lot of experience under your belts, from all around the world. How would you describe the Miami art scene?
Nick: Nascent but growing. A tight-knit community with lots of talent and diversity.
Danny: Full of surprises
Juan: Small and cozy but sometimes unnecessarily hostile, kinda like a gremlin.
6. If you could have anyone on your show who would it be?
Nick: Bob Dylan, but I would be pretty scared to interview him! I don’t think he likes doing interviews very much.
Danny: Bob Dylan.
Juan: We are actually working on some really amazing guests but I don’t wanna jinx it so I’ll go the route of someone who’s no longer with us. Arthur Russell would’ve been an incredible guest to feature.
7. Will you ever do a live taping/audience of the show? Or what other ideas are you exploring?
Nick: Yes, we would love to! We want to collaborate with local visual artists for future set designs and are trying to go more mobile so we aren’t limited to recording bands/artists in studios.
Danny: Yeah, I think doing a show in front of a live audience would be lots of fun. We’ve discussed that and a few other ideas, but we’ll keep quiet for now.
Juan: Yes, we have definitely discussed that possibility but might need to shoot a few more episodes before we take on a bigger challenge.
For media inquiries regarding The Florida Room email: [email protected]