Monthly Archives

May 2022

Jason Michael Carroll

By Booze, Music, Personal Growth 2 Comments

This week, Gary spoke with Country Music Artist Jason Michael Carroll, and was it raw! Jason spoke about having an abusive upbringing and the time he thought he had killed his dad.
Also in this episode:

  • The future of radio
  • Living in a small town
  • Being a PK (pastor’s kid)
  • Having an abusive father who was a pastor and how that affected his faith
  • Getting migraines while trying to write songs
  • How the Marine Corps was easier than his upbringing
  • Breaking the cycle of abuse
  • Having a male-hating mom
  • Thinking kids would fix a marriage
  • Reconnecting with his high school sweetheart
  • His mom taking his ex’s side during a messy divorce
  • Being angry with God
  • Writing Easter plays
  • Why he got passed up to host TV shows
  • Not being reactionary


“My father quit smoking and drinking cold turkey, but couldn’t quit his anger.” ~Jason Michael Carroll

“She’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me.” ~Jason Michael Carroll

“I’m trying to be the best me.” ~Jason Michael Carroll

“Be still & know.” ~Jason Michael Carroll


Country music hit-maker Jason Michael Carroll from Youngsville, North Carolina, is gearing up to release his first new album since 2011, featuring the single “Close Enough.” He’ll be hitting the road in 2016 on a cross-country tour and overseas to perform for the military.

Carroll rose to fame after being discovered at a local talent competition in 2004 and later signed to the Arista Nashville label in 2006, releasing his debut album Waitin’ In The Country. The album produced three Top 40 hits including “Alyssa Lies,” “Livin’ Our Love Song,” and “I Can Sleep When I’m Dead” and soared to number one on the US Country charts, selling nearly half a million copies. Both of Carroll’s following albums, Growing Up Is Getting Old and Numbers have charted on the Billboard Top 200.

He has opened for Brooks & Dunn, Trace Adkins, and Alan Jackson, and was a featured part of Carrie Underwood and Martina McBride’s 2008 tour. He also performed on Good Morning America, thrilled the crowds at the CMA Music Festival, and graced the Grand Ole Opry stage on multiple occasions.

Jason Michael Carroll is a consummate songwriter and continues to write and release new material. Carroll remains humble and optimistic about the future, stating, “I don’t take for granted what I’m doing, and I thank God and my fans every day I have the chance to keep doing it.”

Guest’s Contact Info:

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Susan Lola

By Fun, Travel No Comments

It’s time to get back to traveling! If you’re planning to travel in the near future, definitely listen to this episode before you book anything. In this episode, Gary Scott Thomas is joined by travel agent Susan Lola. She shares the benefits of using a travel agent and talks about some of the opulent trips available. Did you know it doesn’t cost you to use a travel agent like Susan, and can actually save you money? Amazing! 

Also in this episode:

  • The different requirements one must meet for entering different countries
  • Bouncing back after COVID
  • The chances of catching COVID on a cruise
  • How river cruises differ from ocean cruises
  • The most expensive cruises someone can take
  • How to get special packages
  • When to look for non-swimmable beaches
  • Why you should choose an all-inclusive package for your honeymoon


“Travel is still more complicated, even with the internet.” ~Susan Lola

“It doesn’t cost more to use a travel agent.” ~Susan Lola

“You have to know what’s going on in each country and stay on top of all the protocols.” ~Susan Lola

“You’re spending all this money, and you want to get what you pay for.” ~Susan Lola


Susan is an experienced travel advisor with top-notch customer service who will always be there for you – Before, During, and After travel. She helps create lifetime memories and can assist with tours in Europe, Asia, Australia, and more. She invites you to relax on an ocean cruise to Alaska, Hawaii, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, and more, or float on a river cruise in Europe, Asia, Africa, USA.

Guest’s Contact Info:

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André Darlington

By Author, Booze, Fun, Music No Comments

He had Gary at Booze and Vinyl!! This is probably unlike any other episode you’ve ever heard. André Darlington has written two books where he pairs great music with a craft cocktail recipe! And he’s really done his research on the music so he pairs just the right drink.

In this episode:

  • How to “slut up” a boring beer
  • How to make a GREAT martini
  • Staples you should have in your at-home bar
  • “Naked & Famous”
  • Liquors you probably didn’t know about from around the world
  • The place you probably didn’t think about getting liquor from, but should be
  • The drink that “devastated” Gary
  • Finding dead animals in moonshine
  • The “unicorn beer”
  • The research behind the book


“Make sure your ice is fresh. If your ice has been sitting next to a bag of shrimp, the chances are, it’s going to have taken on some of the flavors, and you don’t want that.” ~André Darlington

“The other thing, specifically with martinis, is that vermouth is low proof. So you want to have that stored in the refrigerator.” ~André Darlington

“You don’t want the bottom of the shelf–just good level, you know, middle-shelf kind of liquor is what you’re looking for.” ~André Darlington

“Nowadays it could be Paper Planes; it could be Naked and Famous.” ~André Darlington

“What’s interesting is all cocktails come from India in a way. When the British were stationed there, they started making what they called “punch,” which the word for “punch” was originally a Hindu word, meaning “five things.” ~André Darlington

“India is really a fascinating place for cocktails.” ~André Darlington

“You’d be surprised at how many bartenders sneak away and Google it.” ~André Darlington

“You can kind of take a can of beer, especially a not great kind of commercial beer, and just slut it up with all kinds of stuff.” ~André Darlington


André Darlington is the author of Booze Cruise: A Tour of the World’s Essential Mixed Drinks and Gotham City Cocktails: Official Handcrafted Food & Drinks From the World of Batman, as well as The Official John Wayne Cocktail Book (Sept 20, “22) and Bar Menu (Oct 18, ‘22). He is co-author of Booze & Vinyl, Booze & Vinyl Vol. 2, The New Cocktail Hour, and TCM’s Movie Night Menus.

In addition to food and beverage writing, André has published two books of poetry. The Prettiest Star was a finalist for INDIES Book of the Year in 2018. Kirkus Reviews called the debut work “breathtaking.” China Bus was an IndieNext Recommended book of 2018 and a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award in 2019. 

André has been a columnist for Organic Life magazine, a contributor to Mandarin Quarterly, as well as the alt-weekly, Isthmus, where he was an award-winning food critic and wine columnist. In 2016 he opened the lauded farm-to-table restaurant and natural wine bar, Field Table, designed by JBF award-winning architects, Heliotrope.

André has been a Napa Valley Vintners’ Association Fellow and a judge for the international wine competition, Concours Mondial de Bruxelles, as well as for the American Craft Distillers Association. He is a frequent guest speaker for companies, non-profits, and clubs such as Google, The Smithsonian, ThinkCompany, and Park House Dallas.

Guest’s Contact Info:

You can follow André on Instagram and Facebook.

Aaron Siuda

By Fun, Music No Comments

In this episode, Aaron Siuda with Live Nation Concerts pulls back the curtain and shows us what it’s really like to put on a show. He talks about what venues are best suited for which acts, what it’s like for the tour crew, and more.

In this episode:

  • Going from Finance to Sr. VP of Marketing
  • Behind the scenes of how tickets are sold
  • The evolution of the purpose of a live event
  • How cell phones changed live events
  • The costs of stadium shows


“It’s a really fun job.” ~Aaron Siuda

“Being kind matters.” ~Aaron Siuda

“It comes down to relationships between the promoters and the artists.” ~Aaron Siuda

“When you get known as a great performer, that’s the best thing you can do.” ~Aaron Siuda


– Over 20 years of experience in entertainment marketing focused on social media, strategic planning, event marketing, promotional strategy, and interactive campaigns.

– Clients range from boutique agencies to high-profile artists.

– Well-versed in traditional media marketing (radio, print, tv) as well as interactive, mobile, and direct marketing.

– Very accustomed to extremely high paced, deadline-driven environments

– Exceptional negotiation skills


* Social Media Strategy
* Strategic Partnerships
* Media Negotiations
* Press Negotiations
* Interactive Project Management
* Media buying/planning
* Branding
* Event management

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