R. Brandon Long and Todd Oberndorfer: The Banyan Collective
R. Brandon Long and Todd Oberndorfer are the voices and founders of The Banyan Collective, Ogden’s very own podcasting group that covers art, music and outdoor adventure in northern Utah. You’ve seen Banyan’s 9Rails episodes in our newsletters, and hopefully attended their live music podcasts, Van Sessions, at The Monarch (if you haven’t – go! Great line ups for the coming months!) But what you may not realize is that The Banyan Collective is currently building their permanent home in The Monarch’s creative studios, where YOU are invited to come hang out with them. Long and Oberndorfer are currently designing the studio with multiple podcast recording options for live audience viewing, including interviews and music performances. You can even reserve the Banyan studio to record your own podcast.
“Our vision for our Monarch studio is to act as a space where the community feels at home,” says Long. “We invite everyone to hang out with us and get to know more about the arts and adventure worlds while having a good time and feeling like one big family.”
The Banyan Collective’s Monarch studio is an exciting step for Long and Oberndorfer to secure a permanent location after nearly eight years of producing podcasts for our community. The two Ogden locals started recording together in 2010; at the time, Long was a DJ at Weber State’s radio station, KWCR 88.1, while also working for the Weber State Outdoor Program. What initially started as a specialty program to market the Outdoor Program on KWCR evolved into what is now Banyan’s flagship podcast – the Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show. “The station manager at the time taught us how to upload the radio show to a platform called Podbean, which then could be listened to anytime as a podcast,” says Long. “We had to explain what a podcast was for many years.”
While the term “podcasting” was coined in 2004 and added to iTunes in 2005, it didn’t gain the popularity it has now until 2014 with the release of “Serial,” NPR’s investigative journalism series. Four years prior, the first episodes of the Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show aired, which today has over 330 episodes and more than a hundred thousand downloads. The Banyan Collective now produces a total of five podcasts, which, in addition to the Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show, include the Nine Rails Arts Podcast, Van Sessions, LITerally and Leaky Waders. These shows are all recorded in the Banyan Collective’s mobile podcast recording studio, a 1987 Dodge Xplorer camper van lovingly referred to as #TanVan. Now they’ve added Banayn1, a 1960 Aristocrat family camper, as their permanent recording studio inside The Monarch.
Every month for Ogden’s First Friday Art Stroll, Banyan drives their #TanVan into The Monarch for VAN SESSIONS, a live performance podcast series with local musicians. Two to three bands offer a 4-song-semi acoustic set with intermingled conversation for an intimate experience with the artists. Now that Banyan has a permanent studio, Van Sessions will take place inside The Monarch at the entrance to the Creative Studios. “We are booked through the end of the year with fantastic local and SLC musicians you don’t want to miss!” states the Banyan Collective. “Join us for a unique live audience and music podcast with talented artists bringing you free entertainment as you explore the Monarch’s Creative Studios each and every First Friday Art Stroll.”
Upcoming Van Sessions Line Ups:
October 4th: (The Monarch’s Inagural Open Studio Night!)
7pm – Jeff Beltbuckley
8pm – Vincent Draper and the Culls
November 1st: (The Monarch’s Grand Opening!)
7pm – Mojave Nomads
8pm – Lovely Noughts
9pm – Sam Brue