Tag

family

Keifer Thompson

By Comedian, Community, Music, Personal Growth, Politics One Comment

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, our host Gary Scott Thomas welcomes back Keifer Thompson from country music duo Thompson Square. Join us for another candid yet thought-provoking conversation as they dive into an array of topics, from tackling parenthood to dissecting political landscapes. Keifer doesn’t shy away from sharing his conservative perspective. They talk about societal issues too. Racism and division are hot topics as he advocates for teaching love over hate to kids.

Don’t miss this rollercoaster ride through politics, society, parenting, comedy, and of course, country music! Tune in now! 

This episode is sponsored by:

(Use code “Gary” to get $89 off any Mike Counsil Plumbing and Rooter service!)

In this Episode:

  • Keifer shares personal experiences dealing with his son’s dental issues, shedding light on the complexities of skepticism towards these industries.
  • Hear Keifer and Gary talk about how media bias shapes public perception with its misinformation and concerns over agenda-driven narratives.
  • Explore opinions and insights about political landscapes, current events, and societal issues.
  • Hear insights addressing racism, its evolution over generations, and the importance of instilling values of equality in children, emphasizing the need for ongoing dialogue and action.
  • Discover Keifer’s approach to songwriting and comedic performance.
  •  Hear Keifer and Gary share their personal losses/emotions publicly and how vulnerability contributes to connection with others.

Quotations:

“I feel like everyone’s got to speak their mind. I think, you know, everyone has the right to speak their mind.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“The worst part about what’s going on right now is nobody can admit when they’re wrong.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“When the truth comes out, everyone just kind of ignores it and doesn’t report on it.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I don’t watch the news. I don’t trust any of the news. We’re just trying to live our lives and do our thing. I just feel like God’s in control no matter what.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I reflect on a lot of things and I was driving in the day and just looking out across these fields and trees and everything else and I was like, you know what? You know, at the end of the day. I mean, this is still a beautiful world.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“There’s two kinds of people. There are good people and there are bad people. Doesn’t matter what color they are.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I love thought-provoking things. I wanna talk to intelligent people who have, and you know what, if I’m wrong, prove it to me. You know, if I have to think this way, tell me why. And convince me that I am wrong.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I see it all the time when people get proven wrong and instead of acknowledging that, they just clam up and just run off.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“You can’t tell certain jokes anymore without making everybody mad.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“Comedy needs to be untouched when it comes to social inequalities. Because the thing of it is, man, is we are all different. White people do things that white people do, black people do black things, Mexican people, they do Mexican, we’re up and they’re like, oh, that’s a stereotype, you’re stereotyping. Yes, because we’re all a stereotype. That’s what makes us special. You guys want us to make us all the same.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“That’s the thing about comedy, if it’s true, and everybody knows it’s true, then it’s funny.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“I have faith in the future, I do, because I think these younger kids are smelling the BS. They’re starting to get a sense of what they missed.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“It seems like comedy is always the one thing that will bring a crowd in if you’re having a hard time with them.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“Whether it’s your true persona or not, you have to become the person that you wanna be.” ~ Keifer Thompson

“We’re country artists or whatever, but we’re still people with feelings and problems and all that stuff and loss and hurt and all that thing.” ~ Keifer Thompson

Bio:

Keifer Thompson is one half of the award-winning country music duo Thompson Square, renowned for their soulful harmonies and heartfelt songwriting. Born on January 24, 1973, in Miami, Oklahoma, Keifer discovered his passion for music at an early age. He honed his skills as a singer-songwriter and guitarist, drawing inspiration from a diverse range of musical influences. In 1996, Keifer met his future wife and musical partner, Shawna, at a singing competition in Nashville, Tennessee. Their instant connection led to the formation of Thompson Square, and together they embarked on a remarkable journey in the country music scene.

Thompson Square’s self-titled debut album, released in 2011, catapulted them to stardom with hit singles like “Are You Gonna Kiss Me or Not,” which topped the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. Keifer’s emotive vocals and Shawna’s dynamic harmonies resonated with audiences, earning them widespread acclaim and numerous awards, including Vocal Duo of the Year at the Academy of Country Music Awards and the Country Music Association Awards.

Throughout their careers, Keifer has showcased his exceptional songwriting talent, penning heartfelt lyrics that resonate with listeners on a deeply personal level. With a string of chart-topping hits and a reputation for electrifying live performances, Thompson Square continues to captivate audiences around the world, cementing Keifer’s status as one of country music’s most beloved artists.

Guest Contact Info:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/keifercomedy/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KeiferThompsonComedian/

X: https://twitter.com/keifercomedy

Website: https://thompsonsquare.com/

Thompson Square Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thompsonsquare/

Thompson Square Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thompsonsquare

Johnny Sirpilla

By Author, Faith, Grief, Leadership, Mental Health, Personal Growth No Comments

This week on the Here’s What We Know Podcast, our host Gary Scott Thomas welcomes our special guest, Johnny Sirpilla, an entrepreneur, founder and chief encourager of Encourage LLC, and the best-selling author of Life Is Hard but I’ll Be OK. Johnny opens up about how he inherited not only a successful RV business from his father but also an ethos of hard work and integrity. He discusses how these values have shaped him into who he is today—driven, and perfectionistic, yet always striving to honor his family name. We also delve into the respective childhoods and parental expectations, highlighting both differences in upbringing and common threads such as love, support, and setting standards. This episode is filled with insights on personal growth and dedication towards family values. Tune in now!

This episode is sponsored by:

(Be sure to tell them Gary sent you so you can save 20%!)

In this Episode:

  • Gary and Johnny share amusing anecdotes about their distinctive hairstyles during their younger years. 
  • Discover Johnny’s impressively long bio and wealth of experiences.
  • Discussions on full-blooded Italian traits lead to light-hearted banter about food preferences between Italy vs America.
  • Insights into how family expectations shaped and influenced Johnny’s decision to continue his father’s legacy while creating new avenues within the RV industry.
  • Hear about reflections on parental expectations, love, and support while also setting standards around honor, integrity, and a hard work ethic without spoiling children materially.
  • As a board member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Johnny shares his passion for football and his favorite player.

Quotations:

“The simplicity is what makes it so amazing.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I kind of wanted to make my imprint in the industry the way that my dad did in the fifties as a pioneer dealer.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“(RV) It’s taking the comforts of home with you on the road, right? Why sleep in a hotel bed and a stranger’s bed that other people have been in when you can have your own? So it’s a great way to see the country for sure. And great family time.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I was driven at 15 and had some pretty high expectations of what I could achieve. So I always put a lot of pressure on myself, too much.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“What was awesome about my parents is there is no boundaries to the love that they would give and the support.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I can truly say that I never felt spoiled by my parents because while there might be nice things, the expectation of how we acted in our character in representing our family name. you know, you had to be, you know, at your best.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“They wanted me to have and I bet your mom was the same way. They wanted me to have the life experiences that they didn’t.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I bet our parents were similar in terms of, you know, where they came from and then maybe hopes and dreams bigger for us. Maybe my parents, because they’re full-blooded Italian each that they just talk so damn much that they verbalized it more.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“It’s been an amazing experience to volunteer for the great sport of football and the Hall is such a place of excellence that, you know, any service that I can give to honor the heroes of the game.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I wrote the book to really help people when life is hard because I do believe that life is hard. Even if you have a good life, there’s plenty of things that go wrong in a good life and life is hard.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“There’s gotta be some blessings and graces that come out of this experience that makes me a better man, a better husband, a better business leader, and hopefully someday a better father.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“Practicing gratitude could make a great day really bright and sunny.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“We were able to experience something that God gave us this gift of parenting. even though it was short, it doesn’t mean it was insignificant. It was incredibly significant. And so their lives were incredibly significant.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“I can reframe anything that happens in my life with my anxiety. I can reframe it to something that’s really a gift and a blessing.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“The gift of being a father, you know, it’s the greatest gift of my life.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“The empathy and the mindfulness that I had for situations, that’s actually one of the beauties and maybe superpowers of anxiety. Anxiety makes you extremely mindful and extremely intentional because my mind has to work and think.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

“It becomes a really mindful way of living that produces a lot of joy.” ~ Johnny Sirpilla

Bio:

John A. Sirpilla is a 1988 graduate of Miami University with a degree in Accounting and a special interest in Psychology and Finance, a 2000 graduate of the University of Phoenix with a master’s degree in Organizational Management, and holds a certification in Executive Presence and Influence: Persuasive Leadership Development from the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business.

In 1992, Johnny became President of Sirpilla R.V. Center, Inc. Within a few years, he was recognized out of more than 3,000 dealers as the National RV Dealer of the Year for the best overall-run dealership in the country. In 2003, Johnny was one of the initial acquisitions by Camping World and sold his family business to become part of the executive team to attempt the first RV dealership roll-up plan in the industry’s history.

Johnny served as President of Camping World, a 140-store nationwide retail chain serving the RV industry, and was promoted in 2012 to Chief Business Development Officer for the parent company, Camping World and Good Sam with annual sales of nearly $4 billion. Johnny retired from Camping World in 2017 after a successful IPO.

His company, Encourage LLC, has various holdings in industries including leadership development, population health management, employee benefits, medical device innovation, e-commerce roll-up, executive leadership and consulting, fashion and interior design, and senior living communities, and has become an international best-selling author with his book, Life Is Hard but I’ll Be OK.

Johnny has been married to his college sweetheart, Susan, for over 30 years, and they reside in Canton, Ohio, and Naples, Florida.  They have three grown children, Beau, Bella, and Stone, who all reside in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

Guest Contact Info:

Website: https://johnnysirpilla.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JohnnySirpilla/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/johnnysirpilla/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/johnny-sirpilla/

Kerri Walsh Jennings

By Faith, Fun, Mental Health, Personal Growth, Professional Athlete, Sports No Comments

This week, Gary chatted with the legendary Olympic beach volleyball player Kerri Walsh Jennings. We dive deep into her journey of rehabilitation post-injury, exploring themes like expectation management, maintaining an active lifestyle for personal well-being, and setting examples for children. Listen as she shares valuable insights on handling adversity in high-stakes situations, teamwork dynamics, and overcoming fear – all while juggling career aspirations and family responsibilities. Tune in to hear more about how she continues to inspire others through her story of resilience!

This episode is sponsored by:

In This Episode:

  • Reading Bible verses and using the Bible Recap app
  • Teenagers’ desire to spend more time with their parents
  • The importance of staying active and vibrant as one ages
  • Pouring into and creating a legacy for one’s family
  • Taking time for oneself in a relationship and focusing on personal growth
  • Overcoming fear and maintaining a positive focus
  • The bronze medal game and the challenges faced
  • The power of love and support from trusted individuals
  • The importance of self-awareness and managing one’s energy
  • The role of fear in clouding judgment and perception

Quotations:

“So for your kids, for my kids, to see us wanting to be vibrant, to make it a priority to keep moving, and to pray and to do all these things that fill us up so we can be vibrant in life for them, for ourselves; it’s just such a powerful gift.” ~Kerri Walsh Jennings

“As parents can, to a certain extent, we can control so much of our children’s lives based on the environment that we create in our homes and how we respond to their stresses and their growth, and all these things. And we set the tone largely, and that is such a huge responsibility.” ~Kerri Walsh Jennings

Guest’s Bio:

Kerri Lee Walsh Jennings is an American professional beach volleyball player, a three-time Olympic gold medalist, and a one-time Olympic bronze medalist. She is the beach volleyball leader in career victories as of 2016, having won 135 international and domestic tournaments.

Guest’s Contact Info:

Comedian Sandy Stec: Surviving the Lonely Fight for Mental Health

By Comedian, Mental Health, Music, Personal Growth No Comments

This episode is sponsored by:

If you’re feeling trapped in a cycle of self-doubt and frustration, pouring your heart into your creative passions but never quite achieving the mental wellness you crave, then you are not alone! This week’s guest is comedy Sandy Stec. A funny girl… who happens to be on the radio. She’s a comedian and morning iHeartRadio personality for KOST 103.5 in Los Angeles. 

For over 20 years, Sandy has been sharing her humor and heartfelt stories on the air, and she’s now ready to delve into the topic of mental wellness, self-love, and self-care. Having experienced her own struggles with loneliness and depression, Sandy is a relatable and compassionate voice in the conversation about mental health. With her engaging personality and genuine desire to help others, Sandy is the perfect guest to explore the importance of taking care of ourselves mentally and emotionally as we wrap up Mental Health Awareness Month.

In this episode, you will be able to:

  • Tackling and overcoming common difficulties encountered in the radio field without losing your genuine originality
  • Grasping the significance of self-appreciation, personal health, and mental well-being for continued success
  • Recognizing and becoming aware of distinct cultural disparities in language, food, and prejudicial attitudes
  • Chasing your inventive dreams, remaining focused and committed to accomplishing your objectives
  • Forming meaningful connections, attaining essential guidance, and benefiting from the wisdom of trusted mentors

Dr. Yuriy Dobry’s story:

Chances are, you’ve heard her voice. 

​Sandy Stec is an iHeartRadio personality for KOST 103.5 in Los Angeles; on-air Monday-Friday, 3pm-7pm. Prior to moving to Los Angeles, she was 1/2 of “Marcus and Sandy”- a top-rated morning show on Star 101.3 in San Francisco for 10 years. 

Aside from her 20+ years radio experience, she’s also fantastic event/on-camera host and stand-up comedian! She’s worked with Benefit Cosmetics, HP, Cisco, Norwegian Cruise lines, etc; and opened for Chelsea Handler, Kevin Hart, Arsenio Hall, Richard Lewis and many, many more. 

When she’s not on–air or on-stage, Sandy is probably hiking, watching Bravo or TLC, or hoping to hit a progressive jackpot on a slot machine! 

Quotations:

“I have never felt the depression that I have felt in the last few months of my life to the point where I am absolutely looking into medication.” ~Sandy Stec

“Yes, I’m doing a lot of great stuff. Yes, it looks great online. But I still go home alone.” ~Sandy Stec

“We all can learn from each other’s story.” ~Gary Scott Thomas

“It has definitely changed since I have come here. But this was what I traded for. I was ready for a change. I was ready for a new chapter. And so here I am.” ~Sandy Stec

“If you’re struggling mentally, social media can make it so much worse.” ~Sandy Stec

The Dark Side of Comedy
Despite being a creative outlet that brings laughter and lightheartedness, comedy can have a dark side in terms of the personal experiences and emotions behind it. Comedians often use their craft to cope with their struggles and pain, turning them into relatable and entertaining material. Recognizing and understanding this darker aspect can lead to a deeper appreciation for the art of comedy. During the interview, Sandy Stec shares her experiences in the world of comedy, both the positive moments and the darker times. She discusses her past struggles with mental health, her interactions with other comedians and their personalities, and how she continues to create content while prioritizing her mental well-being.

Contact Sandy:

https://www.sandystec.com