Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala
Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala is a journey across the globe in search of the world's most surprising and imaginative ideas. It's not a travel show, exactly. It's a deep dive into the ideas that shape a particular spot on the map, brought to you by local journalists and creators. Weave through the streets of Bangkok with a motorcycle midwife. Time-travel with dinosaurs behind a hardware store in New Jersey. Meet a guy who dresses up as a luchador to protect citizens from traffic in Mexico City. Drop in, listen up, dig deep.
(And yes, we used to be called Pindrop!)
“I thought I'd come to paradise,” said Jane Ball Groom upon arriving in Soul City, North Carolina. It wasn’t amenities or location that made Soul City paradise, but the promise of what it could be: a city built by Black people, for Black people. Our guests take us back to 1969 when the city was founded and built from (below) the ground up — and while the city itself was short-lived, we’ll see how the seeds it sowed laid roots for spaces that celebrate and center Black culture today.
That's a wrap on the season! Share you stand out moments with host Saleem Reshamwala on Twitter (@Kidethic).
For photos from the episode and more on the history of Soul City, head to the Souvenir Book of Soul City in the North Carolina digital collections.
Special thanks to Shirlette Ammons who we could not do this story without, and our guests Charmaine McKissick, Jane and Leandra Ball Groom, Lou Myers, Tobias Rose, and Derrick Beasley. Extra special thank you to Alan Thompson, who recorded the saxophone music you heard in this episode from Parish Street on Durham’s Black wall street.
Our unsung hero for this week is Sammy Case who manages the cross-promotions for all of TED's podcasts - if you found Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala from one of your other favorite shows, she’s the reason why!
Far Flung with Saleem Reshamwala is produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuzum of Magnificent Noise for TED. Our host is Saleem Reshamwala. Our production staff includes Hiwote Getaneh, Sabrina Farhi, Kim Nederveen Pieterse, Elyse Blennerhassett, Angela Cheng, and Michelle Quint, with the guidance of Roxanne Hai Lash and Colin Helms. Our fact-checker is Abbey White. This episode was mixed and sound designed by Kristin Mueller.
We're doing a survey! If you have a minute, please take it at surveynerds.com/farflung. It really helps make the show better.
Traveling is tricky right now and, for most, the boundaries of our worlds have shrunk dramatically. So a lot of people are spending a lot more time in virtual places, like Sea of Thieves, Fortnite, Ultima Online and more. Explore how these online worlds help us push past real-world boundaries and have vastly new experiences, even become new versions of ourselves—all without leaving the comfort of home.
Check out guest Wes Locher’s book, Braving Britannia: Tales of Melancholy, Malice, and Peril in Ultima Online. You can learn more about Russell Quinn’s computer game, Linda & Joan, at lindajoan.com. Huge thanks to Lee Yancy, whose conversations were invaluable for contextualizing the world of video games, and to Raph Koster for his insight into the virtual world. The computer-y music in this episode was created by musician Phil Cook, and that lovely guitar tune was played by Checquer Checquer. Our unsung hero for this episode is Emma Taubner, our super-star encoder who makes episodes of Pindrop available to listen on TED.com.
Pindrop is produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuzum of Magnificent Noise. This episode was produced by Kim Nederveen Pieterse along with Elyse Blennerhassett, Hiwote Getaneh and Sabrina Farhi, Angela Cheng and Michelle Quint and with the guidance of Roxanne Hai Lash and Colin Helms. Our fact-checkers are Nicole Bode, Abbey White and Paul Durbin. This episode was mixed and sound designed by Kristin Mueller.
Imagine a view with almost perfect visibility, a near edgeless, perfectly black night sky. That’s the Painted Desert. Join us on a field trip with architect Wanda Dalla Costa, who will take us through the desert to explore the architectural practices of several indigenous tribes and reveal how light and design influence the way we move through the world. Oh, and we might just get a peek inside one of the most secretive, highly anticipated art projects in modern history. Want to talk more about this episode? Chat with host Saleem Reshamwala on Twitter: @KidEthnic.
Special thanks to Lemon Guo whose music was featured on this episode, as well as Byron Crenshaw of The Growth Eternal for sharing his music and video footage with us. You can stream his new album mentioned on the episode, Bass Tone Paintings, wherever you get your music. Abundant gratitude to Wanda Dalla Costa, Brian Skeet, Dr. Fowler, Richard Begay, Joseph Kunkel, Selina Martinez, Shenise Bryant, Neda Mohaved, Jessica Yu, Patrick Young and Edward Krupp for your time, guidance, and expertise in creating this episode.
Pindrop is produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuzum of Magnificent Noise for TED. Our production staff includes Elyse Blennerhassett, Kim Nederveen Pieterse, Hiwote Getaneh, Sabrina Farhi, Angela Cheng, and Michelle Quint, with the guidance of Roxanne Hai Lash and Colin Helms. Our fact-checkers are Paul Durbin and Nicole Bode. This episode was mixed and sound designed by Kristin Mueller.
Meet Liberato Kani, a hip hop artist in Lima, Peru—or as he says, “the Andean Bronx”. At his concerts, a typical call and response you hear is "Quechua es resistencia": Quechua is resistance. Though Quechua is spoken by nearly ten million people, Peru's native language is at risk of dying off because of anti-indigenous prejudice. Liberato and other musicians like Renata Flores are here to save it—and restore a country's pride while they're at it. Want to talk more about the show? Share your favorite artist from this episode with host Saleem Reshamwala (@Kidethnic) on Twitter.
This episode features music and interviews from Liberato Kani, Renata Flores, Kayfex, and Uchpa's guitarist and songwriter Marcos Maizel. Listen to more from these artists on TED's Spotify playlist, "Quechua es Resistencia”
Pindrop is produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuzum of Magnificent Noise for TED. Our production staff includes Elyse Blennerhassett, Oscar Durand, Kim Nederveen Pieterse, Sabrina Farhi, Hiwote Getaneh, Angela Cheng, and Michelle Quint, with the guidance of Roxanne Hai Lash and Colin Helms. Additional recordings by Whitney Henry-Lester and Hernando Suarez. Translation and transcription by Hernando Suárez, Eilis O’Neill, and Oscar Durand. This episode was mixed and sound designed by Kristin Mueller.
Once every decade, a small town in Germany puts on the same Nativity play—and they've been doing it for 500 years. How do they keep it fresh? And what happens when a global pandemic means you have to cancel the project you've been working towards for the last ten years?
Harnessing the creativity of a megalopolis isn't easy, but Mexico City shows us how it's done. Follow a real-life superhero who dons a luchador mask and cape to protect his fellow residents from speeding cars, learn how citizens are hacking their way to a better public transport system, and see what it takes to crowd-source a constitution from a city with 21 million minds.
With each step, you slide 400,000 years back in time. Where are you? Behind a hardware store in New Jersey — which also happens to be a massive prehistoric graveyard. The only thing that can save it from turning into an apartment complex is geologist Ken Lacovara, a Leslie Knope-type local government official, and a community effort unlike any attempted before. Hear how this town of 15,000 tapped into a 66 million year old murder mystery, and learn why solving it is so important to our own future on earth.
We're doing a survey! If you have a minute, please take it at surveynerds.com/pindrop. It really helps make the show better.
Fun, fierce and frivolous: AfroBubbleGum is an art movement from Nairobi, Kenya, that challenges the narratives often seen about Africa as limited to war, poverty and devastation. But sharing this joyous art is no frivolous task — it can even mean having your work banned. See why AfroBubbleGum faces opposition and what artists, like filmmaker Wanuri Kahiu, are willing to do to fight for it. Also featuring an interview and music from "Blinky" Bill Sellanga.
What happens to a tourist paradise when no one shows up to visit? Rapa Nui, known to many as Easter Island, typically welcomes more than 120,000 visitors each year—which is a lot for a place with only 10,000 residents. After COVID-19 shuts down flights to this remote island, citizens reimagine what their lives, their livelihood, and their home can be without tourism — and dream of what a post-pandemic paradise economy might look like.
Want to talk more about this episode? Chat with host Saleem Reshamwala on Twitter at @kidethnic.
To learn more, check out guest Sergio Rapu Haoa's TEDx talk on "The Mysteries of Easter Island."
Special thanks to Mario Tuki (and Amahiro), Erity Teave for sharing their music with us and to Sergio Matau Rapu for sharing his wisdom about the island and connecting us to everyone you heard in today’s episode.
Pindrop is produced by Jesse Baker and Eric Nuzum of Magnificent Noise for TED. Our production staff includes Sabrina Farhi, Hiwote Getaneh, Kim Nederveen Pieterse, Elyse Blennerhassett, Angela Cheng, and Michelle Quint, with the guidance of Roxanne Hai Lash and Colin Helms. This episode was mixed and sound designed by Kristin Muller, and your fact-checker is Abbey White.
Let's say you go into labor in the back of a taxi. The traffic is so bad you don't know if you'll make it to the hospital on time. You make the obvious call to the local radio station—which serves as an emergency hotline, lost and found, and community noticeboard all at once. Now a team of motorcycle police (trained as midwives!) is on the way, weaving through the streets of this sinking city. Adaptability, connectivity, creativity in Bangkok, Thailand.