I spent my sixth day of 2011 at the Looking Glass Lounge in Petworth, sitting in a foldy chair in front of Brandon Wetherbee, 28, the host and creator of the You, Me, Them, Everybody Talk Show, a live-recorded podcast. Brandon is from Chicago, and has lived in DC for two months. The show is like watching a late night talk show with the ability to grab a drink.
Wetherbee was set up at the back of the bar and his station consisted of a mini laptop computer on top of a table with a switchboard and microphone. Before the show, Brandon made sure to let the patrons know what is in store at the back of the room, by walking to each table and introducing himself. His guests sat next to his left with their own device to speak into. An old rolling suitcase sitting at Weatherbee’s feet looked like a suspicious package, but was actually what Wetherbee used to transport his gear. The setting was very intimate, but even so, it was a bit difficult to hear his guests speak. You really can’t tell the bar is loud when you hear the podcast, but I sat in the front and had to lean in to drown out the conversation happening right behind me.
YouMeThemEverybody consists of an interview with a local artist or blogger, followed by a comic, and finishes with a musical performance. Brandon says the formula for his talk show is “Ferganesque,” by which he means that he wants to emulate the Craig Ferguson. He went on to explain that the Ferganesque method is a storytelling style, which is more difficult, because “You can fail.” Brandon’s monologue that evening consisted of talking about traveling on American Airlines, New Year’s Eve, and a ghost cab ride, which are “Technically cabs, but are not licensed by anyone, just awful human beings doing what you think is a nice thing.” The full episode is available for download.
It was an entertaining night. Brandon finds guests for his show by scouring the city’s open mics and then meets the people that make a great impression on him. He says, “All the talk show is just me inviting people I think that are fantastic that do really neat things that I enjoy and I bring them on the show. It’s really simple.” He’s been happy with the artistic scene here and says that he’s never in short supply of comics or musicians. His guests were top notch performers and I think that he has an eye for talent. “I like surrounding myself with people that don’t like their day job. I like surrounding myself with people that are trying something different. They’re trying something that doesn’t make sense. I want to be around people that consistently question their life.”
Speaking of questions, he ends each interview with a question from The Kids’ Book of Questions by Gregory Stock, PhD. Guests choose a number from one to 260 and then he reads the question that matches the choice. My favorite question of the night was “What would you do if everyone forgot your birthday?” Do you know what you would do? Yes, I’m talking to you, reader. Leave it in the comments.
The You, Me, Them, Everybody show has been a live talk show since Nov. 2009 and can be seen at the Looking Glass Lounge every Thursday night. Brandon Wetherbee also will be hosting a new open mic at Chief Ike’s Mambo room starting Wednesday, Jan. 12, called Quick and to the Point from 7:30 to 9:00, which will happen on the last Wednesday of every month. He will also host a film screening on the second Wednesday and a round table discussion on the third Wednesday of each month. To learn more, you can find him at www.youmethemeverybody.com or subscribe via iTunes.