Why these podcast hosts want a modern definition of masculinity

Originally a written series of interviews with male celebrities and athletes published online through a website called Gents Post, Gents Talk was launched in 2022 as a video podcast to better articulate the depth of experiences interviewees were expressing to Samir Mourani.

Now joined by podcast cohost Matthew Chapman, Gents Talk is shot at StartWell and published weekly – featuring well known men sharing intimate perspectives and experiences which aim to express their definition of masculinity in the modern age.

For this episode of StartWell’s own podcast, we invited the Gents Talk hosts to share their experiences behind the mic and catch us up on how they are distributing their content. Recently they began showing the first season of their series on Air Canada’s in-flight entertainment system globally and are already receiving great feedback from passengers.

So far Gents Talk has featured guests that include the ‘King of Bay Street’ Wes Hall, professional athletes Jonathan Osorio and Dan Dearing, actor Nick Bateman, director Justin Wong, artist Diego Snow and many many more.

In a rush? Here are some highlights from this conversation

  • Podcasting and interviewing with comedian Russell Peters. (0:01)
  • Podcast creation and collaboration. (1:38)
  • Masculinity, vulnerability, and personal growth. (8:06)
  • Authenticity in media and social networking. (13:02)
  • Podcasting, mental health, and personal growth. (16:05)
  • Podcasting, diversity, and community building. (20:57)
  • Podcasting journey with guests and sponsors. (25:43)
  • Relaxation, identity, and sports at a basketball game. (28:52)
  • In-flight entertainment and Canadian content. (34:08)

Spend time with this conversation - here's the full transcript

Samir Mourani 0:01
And then we just sort of migrated into video when the opportunity to interview Russell Peters came up in the moment we realized it can actually turn into something was when Russell had openly said, you know, during the pandemic, they were some of the darkest days of my life. And his ex had, you know, him and his ex had split up, she had taken his kid, and he's like, I'm in this 12,000 square foot house, I don't have a single photo of my child. And he's like, that was the darkest moment in my life. And when he was opening up to us, and I was like, This is episode number one. I was like, we're onto something. As of January 1 2023, the first 15 episodes of Jen's talk, which is Season One, are now featured on all domestic International Air Canada flights.

Qasim Virjee 0:51
Founded in 2017, start well is Toronto's independent hub for innovators to collaborate. Our podcasts relate perspectives from the world's most diverse urban population to reflect unique insights into global business, media, and culture.

Qasim Virjee 1:26
So Samir, Matthew, thanks for joining me the studio. Thanks for having us. It's awesome to have people who work in the studio. Join me on the mic to talk about working in the studio. Yeah, it's kind of meta. A little bit. Right circle moment.

Qasim Virjee 1:42
Yeah, you guys are the guests? How does it feel?

Samir Mourani 1:45
Good. I feel like I should be asking you questions right now. But I'm just trying to like, no, that's not what you're doing here. You're just sitting back. And

Qasim Virjee 1:53
today you get to share your story.

Qasim Virjee 1:56
So tell me a little bit about how you guys know each other. Before we jump into the kind of the show that you do in this studio. Let's talk about like your relationship. Like how do you guys know each other? Yeah,

Samir Mourani 2:05
so what was it? 2021

Matthew Chapman 2:07
I'm bad with yours. But sure. Okay,

Samir Mourani 2:10
so 2021. So I'm the editor for gents post, which is a premier men's lifestyle publication. It's based in Toronto national in scope, we have an actual growing US audience base as well, which is really cool.

Qasim Virjee 2:22
But digital publication digital publication,

Samir Mourani 2:25
yeah. Well, we'd like to get into a point where you know, when you you know, have publications start doing covers, and every so often a publication will drop a physical cover. I mean, that's like the cool thing to do. But we're not quite doing that. So anyway, we there is this one individual who used to do some work with the stamina group. Now gents, post is part of the stamina group of publications that also includes wander eater and view the vibe and whatnot. And so these

Qasim Virjee 2:54
are all like Toronto based trunk kind of Toronto focus book gives you

Samir Mourani 2:57
the vibe is Toronto based, very local wandering Eater is for the traveler, and it's global. Okay, and Jen's post is Toronto based national in scope and growing in the US. And the idea is to get a global because the topics are very global in nature, it's not Toronto centric. So the individual had reached out and said, Hey, I know this individual who will be like a perfect fit as a contributor

Qasim Virjee 3:23
to someone's posts. One individual was talking about another individual,

Samir Mourani 3:27
pretty much, but the other individual turned out to be math. Yeah. Okay, so it was the first individual Her name was Meryl. Okay. So Meryl reached out and said she was doing some work. And she reached out and just said, Hey, Samir, you know, I know this individual named Matthew, I think it'd be a great fit. Would you like to meet him? And then what was it like a video call or something like that? Yeah, something like that. Yeah. And then we just hit it off. We talked for about an hour about, you know, stuff he's into and why he would want to write for Jen's post. And from there, you just started writing for Jen's posts. And then when the idea of Jen's talk, what Jen's talk the podcast series, because there was a written format to it initially. Okay, so when the idea for Jen's talk, the video series came up, it was just a natural like, hey, let's just do this together and and run the thing. Nice

Qasim Virjee 4:15
was new you guys know each other like couple of years? Yeah. That's cool. Um, and even itself like Jen's post is around like he got started right when you guys got started, right? It's new about

Samir Mourani 4:28
so it started the initial eye concept idea. So Stephen Bronco, who is the creative director and editor in chief for all of the publications, so he came up with the idea for gents post during COVID pandemic and reached out to me at some point, I don't have the exact date and just said, Would you be interested in you know, I see the stuff you do online and you know, you talk a lot about these topics. So would you be interested in you know, coming on board and supporting them? publication and then I said, Yeah, absolutely, this is great. It's middle of the pandemic, there's not really much going on. And I'm like, You know what, I've never done something like this in the space, but I'm interested in the topic. And then from there, it was maybe a good six, seven months before then the conversation with Matthew happened. And after that, Jen's talk, like I said, was already up and running for since inception, really, because we were doing these interviews with US based actors and musicians and entrepreneurs. And I came up with the idea of Jen's talk, because Jen's post. And so it was always in written format. And then we just sort of migrated into video when the opportunity to interview Russell Peters came up,

Qasim Virjee 5:41
right? And how did that come up? So he was

Samir Mourani 5:45
in town because he was doing some work with this real estate investment firm. And random, very random, what

Qasim Virjee 5:51
it's like, Who wants an apartment in the Russell complex? The penthouse is owned by Russell, if you're a good boy, Russell will invite you over for a drink.

Samir Mourani 6:02
So his, the public relations group that was doing work with him, or with the real estate firm, reached out and said, Hey, Samir, would you be interested in interviewing Russell Peters? And I thought, okay, cool. This could be another written segment. And it can help sort of bolster that, you know, we're a serious publication. And then I stopped, and I said, you know, what, for about a year now, I've been doing these interviews, over video, and every time I write about them, no matter how much time I spend writing, I can never fully capture the authenticity, the emotions, the the passion and what the person is saying and talking about. And so if there was ever a moment to convert it into a video podcast series, it was Russell Peters. And so we had hired a videographer. We ended up parting working at a different studio, which was and it was the same day we came here for the first time. Yeah, I

Qasim Virjee 6:55
recall, you came in after the interview, right? And we were like, why did we do the interview there? Oh, my God, I wish we knew about this. So

Samir Mourani 7:01
we did it there. They were fantastic. And it was at the Staples studio, they did, like they were really wonderful in helping us out. But we had to hire a videographer. And that's where there was a bit of a limitation in the sense of, we had to broker too many different moving parts. And it all had to come together, which made it so difficult. But we were lucky that we were able to do it, the space was great. The videographer did his his stuff. And he was good, too. And then we sort of packaged it up and said, Alright, can we actually turn this into something in the moment, we realized it can actually turn into something was when Russell had openly said, you know, during the pandemic, they were some of the darkest days of my life. And his ex had, you know, him and his ex had split up, she had taken his kid, and he's like, I'm in this 12,000 square foot house, I don't have a single photo of my child. And he's like, that was the darkest moment in my life. And when he was opening up to us, and I was like, This is episode number one. I was like, we're onto something here.

Qasim Virjee 8:05
There's a lot to uncover through a series. Yeah, everyone has stories to tell. Exactly. Um, so Okay, so let's talk about, you know, the, I guess the identity of the, you know, the publication, and then the particular mo for the series, you know, what you're trying to achieve through the series and how you curate the guests? How do they relate?

Samir Mourani 8:27
So, gents, post the publication, has an ethos, which is redefining masculinity for the modern man. Now, in today's landscape, there's a lot of noise about what it means to be a man, right? Like, you've got varying spectrums and opinions on a man should be the strong stoic type to the man should be completely open with his emotions and, and whatnot. And a lot of times, somewhere in the middle is where the majority are. And the idea wasn't to tell people that this is not a definition of a man, this is not a definition of a man. The idea was, how do we just simply give people the information to make an informed decision, right, if you're a man who still wants to portray a very strong, masculine exterior, but you are also equally capable of showing emotion and vulnerability with your partner with a therapist, if you needed one with your family members, that that that's okay, you can do that. And it doesn't make you less of a man. But the only real way that we can get to that audience was to have these conversations very out in the open. And so the idea was, let's talk about the things that people still want to know about, which is food travel, gear tech, fashion style, but at the same time, let's talk about things like confidence. Let's talk about things like vulnerability. Let's talk about if you're a man and you're balding, you know, how do you reconcile that?

Qasim Virjee 9:52
Amen brother.

Samir Mourani 9:54
A head of hair,

Qasim Virjee 9:56
no more check it. I mean, it happened to me. The other day I'm in the in the hear I'm in the bathroom. I'm getting ready for bed. I'm looking in the mirror. I'm like, Shit, my hairs going, you don't. And I was laughing to myself and my wife heard me laughing in the bathroom, right? Because we got two bathrooms. She's got too many products. And I don't have many, so I like keeping my sink. But it was really funny because she comes in and I was like, you know, like, check it out. I guess it was the pandemic, all that stress. It's all gone. And then she she before I know it, like I turn around, she's laughing me whatever. She's putting some juice in my hair, man. She's rubbing this stuff in my head. I'm like, what is that? It burns. It burns good. Oh, my eyes. And she's like, it's not in your hair. She's a doctor, right? So she knows what she's putting in my head is that what's that shit that everyone uses? It's Rogaine man. She's putting Rogaine in my hair. And I was like, no, no, don't do it. Don't do it. Because the truth of the matter is, I don't care. You know, personally, I'm like, you know, when alopecia men.

Qasim Virjee 11:00
Outpatient? Well,

Samir Mourani 11:01
there's a lot of men that care.

Qasim Virjee 11:02
I know, there are, that's just my way of kind of like, connecting with pop culture, and Will Smith, you know, but like, everyone has their own perspective on dealing with change and dealing with these, you know, the how, I guess, you know, it's not even about gender. It's really just about perhaps, these stories of, of even how people deal with change in their own ways, not necessarily finding a conduit normally. Right. So how have you as the series has continued? How have you guys found people opening up through their own ways on the mic? Is it like, when they come into the studio to join you on the mic? Versus when they leave? Do you see a difference in them?

Matthew Chapman 11:48
Absolutely. Like, because you give them a safe space. So it's like they come in usually, because you don't really know. And the first thing is always a nice studio like you, oh, that's fine. As long as it's nice. It has a nice, it has a nice way to talk. Right? Like the very end, even with the room, it's the dark colors as the very okay, we're actually here to talk. They started talking and once you warm up, and it's like, okay, you really get into that situation. And we're sort of talking with everyone's real people, like, you know, we're just gonna have regular conversation. And so they usually even just, like, Let's go like it sometimes. Relax. That's something that we're gonna ask them say, how was that Jim was like, how was it for you? Like, Yeah, how's it feel for you, if you feel good, after that's the whole point, because you're gonna get you're getting something off your chest, you're talking about something, you need to talk about something that we all want to talk about, you're going through through your story. So that was like, feel obvious not not everybody, but for the majority. They feel like, you know, like, yeah, like, it was nice. It was, let's do this. Again, it's another conversation. And, you know,

Samir Mourani 12:46
we've even had guests tell us after the fact that like, Man, that was really therapeutic for me, I was actually having a really bad day that day. And I was coming in here for this series, trying to get myself ready to go. And after I left, I felt great, I got to get stuff off my chest. We've had people talk about things they've never talked about publicly, we've had one person, for example, share that they had thoughts of harming themselves. And they never admit that to anybody. Right? Not to their closest, very personal, very personal things. And, and the idea behind it was always, how do we just create a space where it's okay to share those things with free of judgment free of any biases, just share your story, because in all likelihood, there are tons of other people out there that feel the same way. Yeah. And

Qasim Virjee 13:29
if people can connect with the story, they can find truths for themselves in other people's narratives. It's interesting because in this like hypercharged social networking driven, you know, media landscape today, often cases, well, I mean, I find this often cases, you know, what gets replicated in social media is just the old school push media way of preparing ads, people are advertising themselves to each other. Eat my identity, eat my identity, eat my identity all day long. Buy me buy me buy me like, subscribe, click. So dialogue is really interesting to sit back as an audience member and digest. Because you see back and forth you see exchange, right? It's a different consumption pattern. That

Samir Mourani 14:19
is and what's interesting about what you're saying is, when Instagram and Facebook sort of first came on, it was always about creating the perfect photo, the perfect image, the perfect video, and everybody trends, everybody moved in that direction. And if you couldn't create the perfect image with the right angles and the right lighting, people didn't care for it. But there's been so much of that, that now people just want more raw and organic things. They want to you know, their favorite influencer, an artist and musician to show their authentic side, them in the studio creating the music not just hearing the music. They want to know what goes on behind the curtains? They want to hear from those individuals.

Qasim Virjee 15:03
It's so funny because fundamentally, I mean, there's two massively competing kind of owners of the phrase BTS or the acronym BTS. Right? There's the Korean pop group. If you know what I'm talking about, and then you've got behind the scenes and and BTS is definitely I think one of the catch acronyms of the of the kind of Zeitgeist right now for sure. People want to see and you see, every in every type of kind of media production has to have some sort of behind the scenes look in its released because people do they have an interest in not just breaking down how something was produced. If it's a music video, how did you What camera lens did you use? But they kind of want to know that it's true? Yes. And that

Matthew Chapman 15:45
way, maybe it has to be on the scenes just shows them as real people because at least, you know, like, you know, it's it's that is that person is.

Qasim Virjee 15:53
So it's really cool that I think that yeah, that you guys have have pursued this series and have offered your guests the ability to connect with an audience in that new way. You know? And you're just getting started, how many episodes deep? Have you guys gone?

Samir Mourani 16:09
We've released episode 2727 is Monday. Yeah. And I think we've filmed now, about 31 or 32 episodes total. So we're, we're banking episodes because, you know, we don't always film

Matthew Chapman 16:26
Life happens.

Samir Mourani 16:26
Life happens. Yeah,

Qasim Virjee 16:27
it's tough to recycle,

Samir Mourani 16:29
sometimes, or they they have to reschedule because it's also the caliber of the guests that we're bringing on. They've got very busy schedules. Some of them are actors, athletes, entrepreneurs are always all over the place. And then, you know, we want to ensure that we were running a schedule where we filmed and then we published the same like five days later. And it just, it was always this mad rush to get it done. And

Qasim Virjee 16:53
it's like running a newspaperman. Right.

Matthew Chapman 16:55
Having a bank allows us to least relax and breathe a little bit, too.

Qasim Virjee 16:59
So tell me some anecdotes, guys. How's it been going with your guests? Who have you had in the studio? Interesting things that pop out to you personally, individually. Samir, you want to just jump off?

Samir Mourani 17:12
So we've had in terms of guests we've had on like, we've had Canada's top chef and Trey Sanderson who just won. We've had just Donovan Bailey, Canadian legend literally today, right? He was just sitting right before here. Yeah, you're sitting right here. And we've had on Wallace Wong, Chef Devin, we've had on Karl Wolff, Diego snow, we've had on

Qasim Virjee 17:36
I'm forgetting but any particular anecdote from any of those interviews for you personally, that that resonated.

Samir Mourani 17:44
I've said this before publicly. And I'll say it again, it was when we had. So there was a gentleman by the name of Hamza Aziz, who runs a YouTube a popular YouTube channel called What motivated you where he just goes up to, you know, the average individual, because there's a lot of like, on the one hand, we have conversations with celebrities and athletes and people who've accomplished public facing success. He has conversations with individuals, like ER nurses, people who don't have the big social media following, but he asks them, what motivated them and he was the individual that openly shared as an ER nurse himself, that he had thoughts of harming himself. And it was such a powerful moment for me, because it was the first time you hear it, you see it in movies, and all these things, and you hear about it in the news. But it was the first time that not only was someone saying it to me, but that I was in the presence of hearing it live. And his openness to sharing that was sort of a, an awakening moment, because it made me realize that there's still a lot of work to be done in this space, particularly for men because we struggle so much to talk about these things. And far too often men are electing to choose, or are electing to take their own lives, as opposed to seeking the help they need. And it's a shame because we're losing a lot of men that way. And so it really reinvigorated my belief in what we're doing. And emphasize that we need to be doing more we need to have more of these conversations. We need to get more people talking about this thing. Yeah,

Qasim Virjee 19:17
that's a powerful moment for sure. For sure. Matthew,

Matthew Chapman 19:23
mine would have been with Karl Wolff. And I'm not going to remember

Qasim Virjee 19:28
is an artists visual artist. He's a musician he's a musician. Okay. I'm

Matthew Chapman 19:32
not gonna say exactly what he said but what how I understood it was pretty much you don't have to be number one, you can still be top 10 And eat very well. Like you can still take care of your time everything but always still strive to be number one, but like don't, they can always say to me I took that as in like, even like with our podcasts obviously want to be number one be the best podcast, but like if we're number three, number four, that's, that's still really good. Right? And it's just that it's like really opened my eyes and I could really like start looking at things different And then always reach to be the best. But like, it's okay if you're if you don't make it the best because you can still accomplish so many things and have all these other things that you think being the best means gets you, you can still get all that attention. I probably even 20 At this point, probably even 25, if you're the top not of whatever you're doing. So that wasn't really stuck with me. You know,

Qasim Virjee 20:20
that's a powerful one, too, because it's an interesting thing that like, as you interview people that are probably in everyone's mind, you're the best at something, you know. And it's not about competition, it can be overtly, like you said, if you're an athlete, being the best means you got to win that title, right. But if you're like an accountant, being the best might mean getting the best tax return for your client, and no one knows about, you know, so it's a personal journey, fundamentally, because you're answerable to only yourself and hearing that in people's anecdotes and their own stories is pretty powerful. Totally. Yeah, it's really cool. I think it's also really cool that you guys have kind of, it seems like you've picked up on this Canadian angle, like we are here in Toronto, we're in person. And I think it's really nice to bring locals that understand or at least all work in the same city live in the same city, and show some of the diversity in those perspectives as Torontonians as Canadians, is that something that's part of the programming mandate? Well,

Samir Mourani 21:26
it was interesting, because the idea, like I mentioned earlier of Jen's post is that it's working towards these kinds of these types of conversations for Canadian men. But as we're starting to see a growing US audience and an actual funny enough growing UK based audience, we're realizing that these conversations transcend borders. And because they transcend borders, we want to start to influence these conversations, or at least have these conversations with men from different backgrounds, right? And so we're fortunate though, in the sense of because we're in Toronto, we're filming in Toronto, and Toronto is such a hub in North America, there's always people coming in and out, right, whether it's for major festivals like TIFF, or whether they're just coming through because you know, they're in town for something

Matthew Chapman 22:16
electronic. So,

Samir Mourani 22:18
it's right now, we've been fortunate in that it's easier to acquire talent, like if we were doing this and, you know, no disrespect, but if we're doing this in Winnipeg, it's a lot harder to get talent out there in the peg,

Qasim Virjee 22:30
unless it's like, you know, biomedical researchers,

Samir Mourani 22:33
or people who play for like the Winnipeg Jets. Yeah, you

Qasim Virjee 22:36
know, I get it with Toronto has a lot of living links to the world.

Samir Mourani 22:40
Exactly. And that allows us where we're now at a point where we have people from the US reaching out saying, Hey, I'm going to be in Toronto in two months, three months. Can I come on? So we're now obviously,

Qasim Virjee 22:52
I love that. That's brilliant, that's the best thing about an audience growing is having a participatory

Samir Mourani 22:59
audience. 100%, right. Because that's when you really start to build a community. And I think that's the biggest thing that we really want to try to do here is build a community for I'm gonna use the term followers, but community members, people who actually listen to the podcast, want to engage in these conversations, they actively share it because they know the importance of these conversations. So I

Qasim Virjee 23:22
guess it sounds like you want to expand the dialogue from this table. out amongst the audience. Absolutely. Right. To that end, I mean, what's coming up, I guess, in the next little while, or at least let's talk about the beginning of 23. I forgot about that, especially when you're in the studio. You don't know what month it is. But what's planned for this year? Are you guys looking at doing an in person conference or any other programming outside of the the magazine, the digital magazine in the wall? Podcast,

Samir Mourani 23:54
happy to announce that as of January 1 2023. The first 15 episodes of Jen's talk, which is Season One, are now featured on all domestic International Air Canada flights. Yay. It's a huge

Qasim Virjee 24:08
guys do this. You got to pat yourselves on

Samir Mourani 24:11
the back. job, buddy.

Matthew Chapman 24:13
Oh, we got Let's go. Let's go get it. But

Samir Mourani 24:16
it's incredible because it's amazing. It sort of just came out of nowhere, like we didn't have How did that even happen? So when we did the interview with West Hall, West Hall, for those who don't know him is in uber successful CEO. He goes by the name, the king of base Street, here, a lot of Wall Street type names and titles. He goes by the king of base Street, went from living on a plantation in Jamaica to climbing the corporate ranks on Bay Street here in Toronto, and had an incredible story and he was in the process of releasing his book, and he had come on to talk about sort of his journey. And I guess when his episode went live an Air Canada Zack or so When I did, Canada, his name is Norman had reached out, I had seen it. And he told us and so when he reached out, he told us that he ended up watching all the other episodes that day well, and was so enamored, I guess, by the content itself, that he felt he needed to reach out. And I don't want to speak for him, obviously, but felt that he needed to reach out and say, how do we get this on our flights? That's brilliant. So that was in October. And we've been working on that, since October. And I had to, we had to keep this as a secret for so long, which was really fun to sit on. So proud and excited. Yeah. And now we're at a point where, you know, every other day, we're getting like a text, a photo, or a video from someone who was on an Air Canada flight. And it's just like, our clips that are there. And it's just an incredible, man, it's just surreal. But in those moments, when, and I know you've had this, we've talked about this, where we're just like, man, is anybody even watching this thing? It reinforces that there are people watching it. And while the audience size may not be where you ultimately want it to get to, when you look at other podcasts that are out there, it's getting there, it's getting slower. And

Matthew Chapman 26:10
yet still,

Samir Mourani 26:11
it's still an infant. So it's too

Matthew Chapman 26:13
early. And it's crazy, because it's still so early. And you just want to just like, hit the Moon Man, hit the moon, but it's just like, I feel like it's in that process of waiting. And that's like the most difficult part. But it's obviously, you know, what he's talking to the main thing with me, especially with talking to these people is just, it's the same message, like just said, be patient, and be secure in your knowledge of what you're going to do. And make sure you like, if you're gonna do it. Just Just do it. Like, you know, don't don't let anybody else tell you. And it's crazy. Because even like this year, like we both our schedules had a little bit more freedom minute. And we're like, Okay, let's take this time to really just go like all in mangle balls deep. Let's just give it our all right, and like, if we're going to do this, let's do it.

Samir Mourani 27:03
He's like, let's go. Like a lot of like, credit where credit is due. When we first started. After we filmed the rustle interview with like we said, we came here. And we're like, the space is perfect. Right? Like it's got the turnkey solution, which is exactly what we needed. Because I'm not a tech guy. You're not a tech guy. We don't know how to do what poncho, the magician in the booth does for us putting

Qasim Virjee 27:28
pieces together, right? Whether it's infrastructure, even the space into like, the everything, it's so difficult,

Samir Mourani 27:35
and having sort of being central in Toronto, also made it just another, like more gravy on top type of thing.

Matthew Chapman 27:43
These days to get to a central location, something's got to go to Vaughn or something right.

Samir Mourani 27:47
And so having that turnkey solution meant it's one major element we didn't have to worry about, we can focus on quality and the guests exactly the content Exactly. And then, of course, like, none, like the very onset of this started with our like our presenting sponsor, which is biloba. We showed them just the one episode, the Russell episode, and they're just like Zara and her team were amazing. They're just like, Yep, we're in, we think that this could be something big. We really believe in what you guys are building. And we want to be part of this journey and sort of like it really took. What's that saying? We're like it takes a community takes a village. It really feels like one of those where it took a village where everything had to align properly to work out. And so we've we feel like we've found a nice little groove between coming in filming our partners, working with the guests, like we found that, that nice process where you know, everything just happens in sync type of thing,

Qasim Virjee 28:49
you know, building you're doing exactly. That's a good feeling. And that's the feeling also, that hopefully helps mitigate that drive to want to see a resolve, right. So I understand that trying to climb the mountain thing. But at the same time, you know, you can pause and say, Hey, I am a climber. I don't need to be a climber by having reached the top. Yes or working? Yeah. So I think that's that's a huge accomplishment in itself is just getting into the swing of things,

Samir Mourani 29:20
and quality to the content that you were talking about. Super important when when people come in and they sit here and they see the cameras they see like they're not sitting in and they see an iPhone on a tripod, right like that, given the caliber of the guests that we have in that matters to them, because they're accustomed to sitting in front of professional cameras and professional lighting and all these things. So if we were putting in front of them anything less than that, then they start to doubt the credibility of what we're doing. And so when they see the production that goes into it, they immediately say okay, this is a legitimate, I like this. I'm ready. What do you like, talk to me, what do you need for me?

Qasim Virjee 29:59
It's nice to hear that feedback that the environment is not only conducive to enabling people to feel at ease because it's familiar, but also that it's not ostentatious. It's not overbearing. If you're in a TV studio, and you've got a false ceiling and you've got false walls and you've got 20 camera, you know, crew, and like, things are moving around. It's tough to get intimate. Right. So it's, I really I agree with you. I think this studio is special. It's got it's kind of got the best of all worlds professional turn key utilization. Yeah, but at the same time, it's intimate, right? Yeah. It's like, it's

Matthew Chapman 30:34
not overwhelming. But it's still like,

Samir Mourani 30:38
it makes them want to BTS.

Matthew Chapman 30:41
Like, oh, this is this is just yeah, this is, this is like, Oh, this is nice. This is nice. Right? So then it's not like, like, if it's too much of a production is more like, then I guess you gotta feel like you're more on stage two. Right. Right. So So like you said, the same format. Thanks. Yeah. Like, if it's a thing Oh, no, I gotta really watch what I'm saying. Because, like, there's so much like, you know, it kind of breaks down, like still the compact, right? So, yeah, it's

Qasim Virjee 31:07
interesting, and especially when you're talking about like your guests, they're used to being in front of audiences. But but a big part of a lot of those identities are, you know, building a brand and kind of enforcing that. Maybe not facade, but built identity. So, yeah, to kind of like shed that a little bit. You need to relax. You know, it's funny, although I did see the king of Bay street the other day, he was sitting just around the corner from me, I was invited by a new friend, who is, who's the former manager of, I guess, former or current manager of there's a pop star. I'm not up to music, you know, I still listen to stuff from the 90s all the time. But Jesse Reyes. So Jesse's manager, I guess, more REITs yo, he we met, we're talking about cool projects that we want to work on. And he was like, Hey, I got tickets to the game and I'm like, Cool. I haven't been a game in a decade. Not since like Vince Carter was around and I'll go with you. And so we were sitting and I just expected on it's gonna be a pain in the butt. We're gonna have to find parking and line up and all this stuff and little did I know that he leads me through some back passage is fist bumping all these dudes Hey, yo, what's up, bro? So bro, what's up, bro? Bro? Bro, bro, bro, bro. Um, how many rows do you have? This is tons too many rows. And everyone knew him at the court because he's always there. And then we sat right, right on the court like this. You know? And it was amazing, because I didn't realize how tall these basketball players are. Yeah, like, they're huge. And they're 22. Yeah, you know, I'm thinking about this. This is a little weird anecdote here. But it only hit me when I was there. courtside and I saw the king of a street over there. And then my point about him also was that he was looking exceptionally dapper as usual in his three piece with his colleague that was also in some funky three piece suit. And they're lounging they're sitting there sitting back looking around just chillin. And I was like, That's good man, you know, to be in a three piece suit at a basketball game at the front relaxing lounge. It was good. It's a good vibe. And anyway, but it hit me sitting there courtside looking at these 22 year olds at the height of their career in some ways. And that's a whole nother topic, right? Athletes and lifelong careers and like question mark, and maybe something you talked about with Donovan Bailey but but I looked at that and I was like, everyone in the world watches sports people at the height of their, you know, showmanship and ability at such a young age. And it is kind of interesting, because I realized I'm 42 I'm looking at a 22 year old. And all these dudes are in their 20s. But there's a subconscious assumption that we relate to the sports people. You know, it's not about stage in life, of course, like it's, but it's really interesting. It just hit me at that point. And of course, everyone around the on the floor around the ring was not in their 20s Because you can't read afford those tickets. I don't know how people do that. It's

Samir Mourani 34:08
funny you say that. So we've had on two athletes Now Jonathan Osorio who plays for Toronto FC and was just in Qatar for Team Canada and FIFA World Cup. And Donovan Bailey. We haven't had any of that. Oh, sorry. Dan Dean, of course, professional volleyball player, professional volleyball player who's on his, his episode drops this coming Monday. Nice. So he's on the path to Paris. 2024 in the Canadian duals Beach, men's volleyball. Nice. And the sort of the takeaway from those three conversations was, you know, you're doing what you can within the time that you're allotted, because your career is finite. Right. Like, if you we talked about accountants earlier, if you want to become an accountant, you know, you can go into that field and be in that field until you're 60 plus years old and then some if you really He wanted to as a professional athlete, Donovan today said something along the lines of Father Time catches up to you and that's it. And Johnson Soryo said the exact same thing. And Dan said the exact same thing about how you know, like you get to a certain period where your body just stops working in that way, and you have to call it quits. The

Qasim Virjee 35:20
corollary of course, is, you know, the rock in ballers. Right. Well, isn't that the story of ballers? Right?

Samir Mourani 35:26
It's funny you say that? I was actually just finishing the series a couple of days ago. Oh, that's

Qasim Virjee 35:30
a great way. It's

Samir Mourani 35:31
a good series.

Qasim Virjee 35:33
Yeah, it's show it's a shame.

Qasim Virjee 35:34
It's over. It's never I was

Samir Mourani 35:36
gonna back. Are they like, is there more to it? Because it feels like there's a lot of unfinished.

Qasim Virjee 35:40
Yeah, I don't I don't believe that it's been renewed. I feel like he had too many things going on or something. There's some drama. I'm sure. Some studio drama is always blame the pandemic, I don't know what happened. True. Okay, but so I think it's really cool that you guys are on Air Canada, you know, just to pick up that thread of kind of what's coming up this year. Season one you said is live is gonna keep being added to the catalog. So

Samir Mourani 36:07
we're, we're in the process of, we're still filming, obviously, season two. And so once we roll out season two, and that's completed, we basically start working on getting Season Two up onto all the same flights. There's about 450 flights, they fly 52 million people a year. So it's an insane number to comprehend. And we don't expect that all 52 million as nice as it would be would watch. But if we even if we got like 1% of that, that's 520,000 eyeballs.

Qasim Virjee 36:37
So how's it categorized on the in flight entertainment system for people that are watching this and one of you know, Watch more on the flight that they're about to board. So

Samir Mourani 36:47
very simply, right now, we have hero status, which basically means it's similar to when you turn on Netflix. And it starts to show you some of the newest things like that little it shows you three second the photo and the title. And then it moves on to the next one, like a slideshow feature. Yeah, so we have that. And then we're in the documentaries and lifestyle section under TV shows cool. But the impression that we got was that Air Canada is looking at expanding their offerings, right to include more things, like what we're doing. And so we don't know what that means. Whether it's a means there's gonna be a new category.

Qasim Virjee 37:28
I love that. Because there's so many Canadian stories, there's so much Canadian content that's produced for web produced for digital that, you know, can reach so many larger audiences through avenues. That's brilliant. Excellent. Last question about the serialization of the content. How do you guys how did you choose the end in the beginning of each series or season?

Matthew Chapman 37:56
They just wanted the first 50 Yeah, it was arbitrary. Yeah. Like it wasn't, it wasn't supposed to be did when you started filming wasn't like we're doing seasons to kind of just filming. And then when they won first things, okay, that's the season called, I think at that point, we were at,

Samir Mourani 38:10
we were already at like 60. Or sorry, we just finished, we just finished 15 We had our we had a couple filmed and we were in the process of publishing. But we're like, you know, what you can do is a nice number, we'll just here's 15 episodes. This is now season one. And that's why I like

Matthew Chapman 38:27
to is going to be a bit longer than Season Three probably go back down to about 15.

Qasim Virjee 38:32
It's funny, because it's been, you know, a function of the format is a descriptor, of course in the XML feed for RSS and like podcasting that you can do that you can kind of clump episodes into seasons, but like, I never think about doing that, you know, so even for our own podcasts, like I used to have a podcast like 150 episodes, but someone's seeing that on their app is season 150. So

Qasim Virjee 38:57
I can't wait till season two comes out 300 episodes, like,

Samir Mourani 39:01
we never really thought about doing it. Like it was always just like, You know what, we'll just keep filming keep on

Matthew Chapman 39:09
now, it's like just makes perfect sense that it's in season, but it's just natural. Like it just flow it wasn't like last two seasons ago this opportunity came we could have ceases so Okay, now let's, we're obviously doing seasons now. So now okay, how long the second season gonna be third season is gonna be right. So it makes us good to even presented sponsors and grow some more sponsors. You know,

Qasim Virjee 39:31
that that takes us to shout out and word up so sponsors for people in the audience that are watching this that are listening all around the world who want to reach out to the hosts of gents, talk on the gents posts. Let's just put it out there guys, any final words in terms of things you're looking for? If it's guests, if you're looking for any volunteer or otherwise staff opportunities to help with the publication on either side? And otherwise, where can people find you? He channels.

Samir Mourani 40:01
Yeah, absolutely. So if they're on the gents post sides on the media publication side, if they're writers or they have stories they want to pitch, they can easily send it off to Hello at Jen's post.com. If they want to pitch themselves as a guest, the easiest thing we can do is to go on our Instagram page, which is Jen's post, and simply follow us follow us first, like every possible thing that's there, but also just send us a DM because part of our filtering system, if you will, for guests is very much you know, what are you currently doing that's of relevance. What have you done that's of relevance? Because they're, you know, I hate that as I hate how pretentious the sounds, but we're targeting a very certain caliber of guests because we want to showcase that the people who have achieved that forward facing success also have stories behind that. And that's what we're really trying to focus on. Which does mean that the series is not exactly guest wise for the everyday person there are podcasts that are like that, but this is not one of them. But we are looking at bringing in more experts you know whether they're psycho experts, nutritionists fitness experts that kind of thing and same thing they could find us on our all our socials it's either gents post or gents talk. It always be one of the two we do have differentiating names only because gents post is still the publication that powers gents talk the series. Sure. Nice, social

Matthew Chapman 41:40
media manager, social media manager, manager manager and someone wants to help out like the posting is tiring, tiring, it's a lot it's a lot of work. It's a lot I would I would really hope

Samir Mourani 41:54
anyone who is interested in that space like even a you know a like a video we have a video editor Roman who does our post production stuff so poncho, of course helps us out in the studio while we're here. Roman takes over after the fact but if there was someone who let's say was interested in coming to the studio on the days that we film to do more BTS stuff because we try to do yes again Yeah, but we try to do a lot of that and then we're also semi distracted with Alright, let's make sure the guest is in there ready to go you know everyone's set Sure thing that we sometimes forget to do the other stuff we need to do or we just don't have the time to do it. So if there was someone that was interested in stuff like that it's also always something we're open to wicked

Qasim Virjee 42:41
wicked guys was nice spending time actually you know taking moment because we're always seeing each other in the hallway. I'm always finishing up work being like Alright guys this was so cool spending some time and sharing your story with with the stairwell audience as well.

Samir Mourani 42:55
No thanks for having us and anyone that's looking for a turnkey solution that offers you everything. Trust us check out the start well studio it's it's clutch I think is a great studio right on.

Qasim Virjee 43:07
Thanks, guys.

Samir Mourani 43:08
Appreciate it. I wasn't sure if you're gonna give me a props or

Qasim Virjee 43:12
I'm old school. I do the handshake. We did the reverse handshake,

Qasim Virjee 43:15
the Ford handshake. All the handshakes, man,

Samir Mourani 43:18
appreciate it. Thanks for having us. Lucky.

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