After five years and 260 episodes, The Adelaide Show will cease production this year, marking the end of an era for the weekly podcast uncovering the hidden passions rippling beneath the surface of South Australia.
Founder and creator Steve Davis said that the podcast project started as a hobby in 2013 and grew into a labour of love.
"When episode 260 wraps up we'll look back on a catalogue that showcases some of our more colourful identities," Steve said. "We provide a platform for our guests to talk freely, whether that's to reveal their passions or to vent their frustrations."
- The injustice of wine judging came to a head when wine writer and judge Nick Ryan went head to head with winemaker and fellow guest Greg Follett (ep 209)
- Journalist and news presenter Mark Aiston questioned the wisdom of paying TV presenters outrageous sums of money while theatre nurses who deal with life and death survive on basic wages (ep 194)
- Fat Cat aka Ralf Hadzic told us how to "pick up" at nightclubs (ep 119) while Kelly Noble from Glam Adelaide gave the tip on how to pose for photos without "fat arms" while juggling a glass of champagne and a canape (ep 92)
- John Schumann of Redgum fame called anti-nuclear campaigners idiots, while fellow guest David Minnear, Adelaide Fringe chair and former advertising guru, confessed to a stunt that destroyed the first prototype Mitsubishi Sigma Wagon in Australia (ep 130, recorded live as our first Fringe show in February 2016)
- Entrepreneur Shane Yeend said love for his young son and hope for the future added to his frustration with the curren State Government's approach to economic management, which he said keeps the majority of South Australians living on welfare, working in the public service or reliant on corporate welfare (government contracts). The original interview had so many words to bleep out that it led to the show's only re-record in 4+ years (ep 221)
Despite being a side project to Steve's main role as Creative Director at Baker Marketing, the podcast has maintained an unfailing, rigorous production schedule of one show per week.
Playing Robin to Steve Davis's Batman, Tonto to his Lone Ranger, Nigel Dobson-Keeffe has co-presented every episode since number 70 and brought a wealth of general knowledge and critical-thinking framework to topics.
"Nigel is both an artist and a cognitive scientist - his strong research skills have endowed the podcast with a history trivia segment, Is It News?, in which he challenges me and our guests to pick the 'fake news' item from three stories from South Australia's past.
"Through this segment, our community learns a lot about our state's history and about Nigel's cunning."
Despite a trend towards greater advertising in podcasting, The Adelaide Show has remained a non-commercial venture, produced by a team of volunteers.
"What motivates us each week is the chance to sit with someone who inspires and/or intrigues us, and to share the conversation as a gift to the community, " Steve says.
"The 'gift' nature of the venture has always been important to us and we are hoping our enterprise has encouraged others to think about what they can give back to the community."
Steve says it's been hard at times to fight the marketer's instinct to monetise the podcast.
"Ultimately by having 'no strings attached' and remaining true to our grass roots, we've been able to go where others fear to tread," he says.
"For example, late last year we took the radical step of opening a bottle of 1991 Penfolds Grange offered by guest, Leila Henderson, and cooked Coq au Vin and poached pears with it - this is something that would have probably cost us an advertising account.
"Not having sponsors has meant we've been able to follow our curiosity, with freedom to explore topics and arrive at positions without needing to make commercial compromises. It's been liberating to follow the philosophy of 'record it and they will come', and we have deeply appreciated the loyal community that has grown around our weekly utterances."
The podcast began in 2013 as Another Boring Thursday Night In Adelaide with Steve Davis, Colin Long, and Brett Monten, but became The Adelaide Show from episode 80.
"The podcast has gone through a few changes in format and lineup over the years but we've always maintained a disciplined approach as a sign of respect to our guests and our audience," Steve says.
"Everything in this world has an expiry date, including presenters and podcasts, so we're seizing the initiative and naming our own use-by date. We are now creating the final 20 conversations with interesting and thoughtful South Australians and we plan to go out with a bang."
The Adelaide Show's legacy of intriguing, helpful, and entertaining content may well be the foundation for a new podcast venture.
"Whatever that might be," says Steve.
Not all Adelaide Show interviewees are household names; the podcast has uncovered hidden gems like these:
Don Violi from Khrome Hair Studio, explained how a raunchy Adam and Eve mural by Clifton Pugh on a Stobie pole in Prospect, which he used to promote his salon, mobilised religious zealots and the council in 1984. The issue wasn't resolved until the piece was bought and removed, pole and all, and he recounted a story of once cutting Premier Don Dunstan's hair only to find there was no conversation forthcoming (eps 41, 146, 200).
Professor Flint, the singing paleontologist, dismantled a Chicken Chef chicken during the show, seeking out the wishbone and comparing it to a dinosaur model as a means to demonstrate that birds are, in fact, dinosaurs (ep 204).
Adam Kretschmer and Fiona Braendler from Scrabble SA amazed and surprised us (both words worth 18 points) with insights into "rack management" such as aiming to spell the word RETAINS on your rack because that collection of letters lends itself to versatile word creation (ep 186).
Sex worker Scarlett Jones revealed - while discussing -moves to hold the final vote on decriminalising sex work in South Australia that many women in sex work actually enjoy it and are not choosing it as a last resort, while fellow guest, Greens MLC Tammy Franks, explained how the parliamentary process was being subjected by opponents to delaying tactics (calling an unrealistic number of "experts" to give evidence to the Select Committee) and deceptive tactics (producing materials with deliberately erroneous claims about the new legislation, such as how suburbs will be filled with street workers and brothels will be on every corner) (ep 211).
Rostrevor Pizza Bar owner Gaetano Lepore charted the explosion on pineapple usage in pizza shops during the past 30 years, growing from his initial need to have a pineapple or two behind the counter for occasional use to his current regime of ordering a pallet of pineapple every month (ep 202).
Dylan Middleton and Marcus Davies from the Trifecta Cricket Association attracted former South Aussie Greg Champion to open up about the strong memories and emotional bonds that are created for young Australians through the simple act of playing backyard cricket, especially the negotiation and debating skills acquired during the setting and enforcement of complex rule systems (ep 110).
The Adelaide Show Podcast
- tasting the South Australian Drink Of The Week
- introducing The Musical Pilgrimage
- And other aspects of the show