Charleston is no stranger to change and innovation. In fact, Charleston is not only Travel + Leisure’s best city for God knows how many years but this port city is also one of the most innovative cities in the United States right now. New bars, restaurants and leisure activities are popping up daily. And four men are here for it all, even creating their own innovative space within the community.
The Where’s My Beer? podcast was developed earlier this year as a safe space for four friends to commune with each other and others while enjoying a pint of beer. They are recruiter Jackson Ayers, architect Collin Cope, personal trainer Nate Page and software developer Michael Schwind. How did the friendship come to be? A girl, of course.
Hannah Dweikat, Schwind’s girlfriend, introduced the four through various channels. The “quad-pod” as I’ve decided to affectionately refer to them, have an ease and smooth calmness about them when they are together. One would never know they’ve not been friends all their lives. Laughter flows from each almost continuously. It’s no wonder the podcast is growing as fast as the city it’s produced in.
“We’re four different guys who come from different backgrounds and areas. We’ve got different sports likes, religious upbringings, different parental upbringings. We are into different kinds of girls and beer tastes. But you put four guys together who genuinely like each other, and the conversations are generally interesting,” said Cope. “Iron sharpens iron. Tale as old as time friendship.”
As their friendships blossomed, they soon found themselves meeting at a brewery every week to catch up, a mandatory ritual to keep each other a priority.
“And that’s literally how the podcast came to be. We all love to drink beer, and we’d meet up at local breweries, and we thought maybe other people would be interested in some of our stories,” Schwind said.
The podcast itself covers a variety of topics but overall promotes a safe space with good friends to talk about the daily struggles and triumphs of life. Episodes with titles like “The Boys Sit Down and Talk Masculinity” and “Optimizing Life, Inherited Traits” find listeners clinging to what happened next and understanding a bit more about their lives and in essence, even your own.
“Our friendship has grown because of this podcast and regularly meeting,” said Page. “Tackling some of these deeper subjects. Even if it doesn’t turn into anything, I enjoy sharing it. I know my mom enjoys it.”
The quad-pod is promoting a sense of healthy masculinity.
“We are four guys who have strong opinions,” Ayers said. “I’d like to continue to show people that yes, we are ‘guy’s guys’ but we are also willing to look introspectively and talk about our vulnerabilities. And that’s important.
The podcast is not all serious, however. Cope said, “We have silly ass conversations that make no sense to anyone. At the end of the day, those are the conversations that keep us going. Regardless if [the audience] enjoys our conversation or the breweries, we would like to remain brutally genuine.”
And even though the podcast grows week over week, the boys aren’t ready to quit their day jobs.
“We’d happily accept sponsorships. But we aren’t looking to take on any brewery sponsors at the time as it might lead to something different that might sway their objectiveness,” Schwind said.
They agree, however, that they’d like to record at all 37 breweries at some point and feature an owner or a brewer every three to four weeks, schedules permitting. The biggest issue facing the recording of the show is sound. “Based on sound quality, we have to choose good spots with minimal background noise,” Schwind said.
Luckily, the boys received an angel gift/investment to make the podcast top-notch quality. Minimal background noise is a must-have when recording. They say some of their favorite spots to record have been Munkle Brewing Company and Beve Beni Brewing Company.
“Palmer Quimby puts himself in the public eye a lot at Munkle and he was easy to build a relationship with,” Schwind said. Marissa and Clay Carlisle were also very accommodating,” Schwind said.
With just over 20 episodes under their belt, the podcast is keeping space for these four friends to be accountable to their listeners and themselves.
“This is an inward conversation about how we can be better at life, how is your life going, where are you struggling, how can we be better friends,” Cope said.
The boys meet once a week to record an episode to be released the following week. New episodes release every Wednesday on platforms like Spotify, Audible and Apple. Love Best of Charleston? Help the Charleston City Paper keep Best of Charleston going every year with a donation. Or sign up to become a member of the Charleston City Paper club.
“It’s a forced reason to keep each other in check,” Page said. “And we love it.”
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Help the Charleston City Paper keep Best of Charleston going every year with a donation. Or sign up to become a member of the Charleston City Paper club.