Get The Lowdown

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The Lowdown is a new Fredericton-based video podcast created and hosted by Darren O’donnell.   

Matt Carter

Darren O’donnell has always enjoyed tinkering with gadgets, and for the past several years he has been exploring the world of audio/visual gear from both on and off stage.  As an accomplished musician, band leader, videographer and light designer, he recently turned his attention to live video streaming, an idea that has since evolved into a video podcast called The Lowdown. The show is an ongoing series of long-form conversations that allow he and his guests the opportunity to explore topics in a way standard social media practices simply don’t allow.  

“I find social media to be very, ‘here’s a picture, here’s another picture, here’s another picture,’” said O’donnell, “but every time I see someone going live I usually stop in to see what’s going on.

“As things get shorter, richer ideas become harder to explain,” he said. “It takes more time for a conversation to affect someone and possibly change their behavior than just a quick ‘Hey! Here’s Darren. He thinks this. Goodbye.’ The short stuff just maintains status-quo. And status-quo doesn’t change unless you’re able to bring about a rich idea for people to understand and people won’t understand a rich idea when your message points are so short.  Some ideas just need more time.”

The Lowdown officially launched on February 26. The program’s inaugural live stream featured a conversation with Feels Good’s Stephen Lewis and Paul McAllister. Each episode of the program is streamed live and later archived online. 

While putting together his studio, a multi camera set-up which includes room for two guests, O’donnell didn’t originally intend to see himself in the host’s chair. But now with a few shows under his belt, he admits he’s beginning to get comfortable as host and facilitator of what he’s created. 

“Initially I was trying to figure out what exactly this show was going to be, but I’ve since decided to just begin and let it grow organically and find its own identity,” he said. “To cut my teeth, I figured I just needed to start by talking to people I know.”

O’donnell sees the whole concept of The Lowdown as a learning experience and something he hopes to see evolve and grow over time.  In the end, he’s simply seeking good conversations in a world where engagement on a meaningful level is becoming harder to find. 

“My favourite part is that I get to talk to people I don’t otherwise get an opportunity to have a solid conversation with,” he said. “I think of myself as the average Joe and while I know a bit about music, I want to be the guy who doesn’t know much so I can ask the questions that delve deeper into someone’s expertise. And if we do 30 episodes, hopefully number 30 will be better than number one, and hopefully I’ll be better at what I do.”

Visit The Lowdown on Facebook to see past episodes and learn more about upcoming conversations. 


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