Ossa Featured Podcaster: Cassidy Liston, Drinking The Koolaid Podcast
Ossa podcaster Cassidy Liston is a cohost, along with Amanda Goodness, of the Drinking The Koolaid podcast. The show takes a comedic critical lens to all the best murder mysteries, strange hauntings, conspiracy theories, and so much more. Covering a wide variety of topics in the world of mystery, there’s something for every listener in the Drinking The Koolaid catalog. As their site states, “Just remember to keep your front door locked, your mind open, and keep Drinking the Koolaid!”
Tell us what your podcast is about in 3 sentences or less!
A comedy podcast dedicated to the mysterious. We approach two different stories each week with an open mind and a lot of questions.
Long Beach, California
What’s a quote or piece of advice that you try to live by?
Plan for the worst, hope for the best.
I am a very patient person, which works well when you have 3 hours of audio that needs to be edited down to an hour and a half every week!
One thing on your bucket list:
Before I turn 30, the only thing on my list is to swim with great white sharks!
I could listen to Blood in the Cut by K. Flay all day, every day!
Last Text Message You Sent:
“Sorry, was in an editing hole”
What was your first job?
My first real job was a receptionist at a hair salon.
Any unusual hobbies?
I don’t know if it’s unusual exactly but I am a horror movie fanatic. I watch every new horror movie as soon as I’m able.
Biggest Pet Peeve?
People who chew with their mouth open! It’s rude and the sound makes my skin crawl.
What inspired you to start your podcast?
The first day of the lockdown here in LA county, my mentor who was one of my dearest friends died. She was someone I looked up to in a lot of aspects and she was in her early 30’s. One of the main things I loved about her was her fearlessness and her ability to gracefully succeed and fail. I had wanted to start a podcast for years and I decided I needed to channel her fearlessness and just do it.
Tell us more about your work/life outside of your podcast.
I work in production, mostly commercials and some TV, but I also do food tours and write articles for a local publication about restaurants that I love!
What is your show’s USP?
We cover a really wide array of topics and don’t shy away from asking a lot of questions. Everything about our podcast is meant to challenge the way you see the world around you while also keeping you laughing and entertained. There’s episodes where we both have cried, laughed, and gasped!
What is one of the greatest challenges you have personally faced with your podcast?
The fear of failure has always been a huge obstacle. There’s this idea, especially in Los Angeles, that if you aren’t making money or famous, you haven’t succeeded. As the show has continued and consistently grown in listeners, it’s been easier to realize that people will only enjoy your show if you’re doing it because you love it! Not because you want something from it. There is no failure if you’re podcasting for yourself and your own happiness.
What was one of your favorite episodes you’ve ever done? Why does it stand out?
I absolutely love our 31st episode “Queen of the Prudes.” It’s dynamic in a way that I think captures what our show is about. The opening is incredibly funny, while my story is a real head scratcher and my co-host covers a truly heartbreaking true crime story.
What is one thing you have accomplished with your podcast thus far that you are most proud of?
I absolutely love the community we have created. Between our Patreon page and social media, we are interacting with people all over the world every day. Conversations are sparked, questions are asked, and a LOT of laughs have been shared. I’ve gotten so many messages from people saying our show helped them get through 2020 and the isolation of the pandemic. I hope our listeners realize we feel the same way!
What is one major milestone that you would like to accomplish through your podcast in the next year?
I would love for our show to grow enough where we are able to start traveling and covering haunted locations. It’s a suggestion we get a lot from listeners, but we aren’t quite there between income and of course the pandemic! I think we will get there by the time things are opening up.
What is a trend or development in the podcast industry that you foresee happening in the next few years?
I think people are going to be less interested in celebrity podcasts and more invested in independent content. Don’t get me wrong, we love shows like Armchair Expert, but 2020 has been really isolating to a lot of people and I know for me, I love the feeling of listening to a podcast that is hosted by relatable people who make me feel like I’m hanging out with friends.
What is one of the best pieces of podcast-related advice you’ve ever received & why?
Not everyone is going to like you. It’s just a fact and once you get over the fear of a stranger disliking you or someone you know thinking your show is lame, it becomes a lot easier to release content you feel confident in. Create a show you would like and like-minded people will find it!
What is one of the worst pieces of podcast-related advice you’ve ever received & why?
“Don’t read your negative reviews” is terrible advice. You absolutely should. Not only will it help you get over the idea of it, sometimes bad reviews give good advice and the only way your show can get better is if you aren’t too stubborn to listen to someone who has an issue! Obviously, some reviews are from people who will never like your show, but if someone has a fixable issue with your sound quality or a suggestion on how to better approach a sensitive subject, you should listen!
What are some of your favorite women-hosted podcasts?
Can you tell us about a time when you took a huge risk/did something you were scared to do, and it totally paid off?
When I moved to California, I had no money, no job lined up, and nowhere to live. I packed my car with everything that would fit and met Amanda, my cohost, at LAX. I was terrified! How would we find somewhere to live? How would we make money!? That was almost 10 years ago and it was the best thing that ever happened to us. Amanda met her husband here, I found my partner, we both have careers and now this podcast as well. Sometimes you have to trust yourself enough to bet on your own success.
Are there any great podcast-related resources you love that you would like to share?
Honestly, we are insanely self taught. I learned how to use all of our equipment and software on Youtube and one thing I stand by is: if you can’t figure something out, I bet there’s a Youtube video about it! But we were really lucky to find a great network of other small podcasts on Twitter and Instagram who are so encouraging. Find like-minded people online y’all! It makes a big difference.
Is there a charity or cause you care about that you would like to share?
If you are able, donating to https://dnadoeproject.org/ can make a huge difference in the life of a victim. Identifying these Doe’s gives family a chance to heal and can solve long cold cases.
How do you feel you’re making a positive impact and generating change through your podcast?
I think we bring people joy while also hopefully educating them on interesting and sometimes vital topics.