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Welcome to Strong Reception with Eli James. This podcast covers a whole host of subjects, ranging from election reform in New York City to the history of cover songs. It's for the civic-minded, the historically curious and those who love exclaiming, "I didn't know that!" Hear a range of great interviews with those who know their stuff, and those who are trying to change stuff.
 
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This time I'm the guest on my own show — or, wait, am I? — in this mini-episode that makes a big announcement. Strong Reception and I have moved to a place far, far away. Check it out - and, gee, isn't this Matt Thompson guy a bit of a w-nker??بقلم Eli James
 
"Summer of Soul" is a groundbreaking documentary that I want everyone on Planet Earth to see. Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson (founding member of The Roots and professional musical encyclopedia) made his directorial debut on a subject close to my heart: the all-but-forgotten Harlem Cultural Festival of 1969. This series of six Sunday concerts in New Yor…
 
This week I am pleased to present my conversation with Chris Durosinmi, who is running to be the next City Council Member for the 37th District in Brooklyn. This episode is part of my series of interviews with the candidates in this all-important primary election, which takes place June 22 in New York City, along with the races for mayor, comptroll…
 
This week I am pleased to present my conversation with Misba Abdin, who is running to be the next City Council Member for the 37th District in Brooklyn. This is part of my series of interviews with candidates in this all-important primary election, which takes place June 22 in New York City, along with the races for mayor, comptroller, public advoc…
 
Subscribe to “Strong Reception” wherever you get your podcasts, and please leave a comment for the show on Twitter at @strongpod. Let me know what you think! This week I am thrilled to present my conversation with Sandy Nurse, who is running for a second time to be the next City Council Member for the 37th District in Brooklyn. This is part of my s…
 
Please check out my conversation with Rick Echevarria, who is running for City Council in New York's 37th Council District in Brooklyn. This episode is part of a series in which I will be interviewing candidates running in the June 2021 primary for this City Council seat. Rick and I talked about how New York's outdated voting system impacts the cit…
 
L. Joy Williams doesn't rest much. Running on four hours' sleep each night, she dons an array of hats during the day, moving at a breakneck pace to empower more Americans to engage with the political process. I'm grateful she made time to drop by "Strong Reception" to talk with me about increasing voting access in New York, as well as to provide he…
 
Welcome to the first-ever bonus episode of Strong Reception! I couldn't resist putting out this short "extra track." There are just too many smile-inducing moments contained in this unplanned 20-minute convo between myself and Renée Graham, associate editor and opinion columnist at the Boston Globe. After recording our "In Memoriam" episode last mo…
 
As 2020 draws to a close, I am joined by Boston Globe columnist Renée Graham to discuss some of the music legends we lost this year. Renée is an award-winning journalist and among the most fun conversation partners I've had on the subject of music. It's her second time on the show (See Episode 3) and I'm so excited to have her back. She and I each …
 
In this music history episode of "Strong Reception," I am joined by two special guests as we dive into the rich history of the song "Just a Gigolo" and its unlikely sibling tune, "I Ain't Got Nobody." Fellow music nerd Philip Emeott and I walk through the surprisingly complex journey "Just a Gigolo" took from the dance halls of 1920s Vienna to the …
 
If you're like me, you have judges on your ballot this November — in addition to that whole "electing a president who might not want more people to die" thing. Also if you're like me, you hate having to vote for judges you know nothing about, who don't run campaigns, who are nominated by party insiders, and are sometimes running on three or four pa…
 
On September 29, 100,000 New Yorkers (myself among them) received misprinted absentee ballots that had someone else's name on the return envelopes. The gaffe was the result of a multimillion-dollar error from a third-party vendor (way to go, Phoenix Graphics), but it's still not a great look for the New York City Board of Elections, which has a his…
 
Renee Graham is a renowned music and arts journalist who has been writing for the Boston Globe for thirty years. Her remarkable ability to speak on the cultural and social movements of the last fifty years has made her a highly sought-after documentary guest, and you can hear her expert commentary in Netflix's "The Two Killings of Sam Cooke," and i…
 
Fugees. Flack. Lieberman? The wonderfully talented yet woefully unheralded singer-songwriter Lori Lieberman explains how she conceived, co-wrote and was the first to record the '70s (and '90s) classic "Killing Me Softly With His Song" — without ever getting a songwriting credit, and while under the thumb of a domineering management team that tried …
 
In this episode of Strong Reception, I talk to Brooklyn activist, carpenter and entrepreneur Sandy Nurse, who recently ran to fill the empty seat in New York's 37th City Council District during the height of New York's COVID-19 crisis. Nurse's campaign was just starting to gather momentum — even collecting some high-powered endorsements from folks …
 
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