On this episode of White Label American, I chat with entrepreneur and mentor, Kerry-Ann Reid, who runs the podcast production company, Breadfruit Media. We discuss how the podcast industry needs to prioritize the audience's needs over technology and ...
On this episode of White Label American, I chat with entrepreneur and mentor, Kerry-Ann Reid, who runs the podcast production company, Breadfruit Media a podcast production company that creates culturally relevant content with a Caribbean American Point of View. We discuss how the podcast industry needs to prioritize the audience's needs over technology and advertisers. Kerry-Ann shares her personal journey, how she launched her own podcast, Carry On Friends, in 2015, and experienced burnout due to pressure to monetize. The discussion delves into Caribbean history, creative burnout, feedback, and the importance of giving it in a safe and constructive way.
Kerry-Ann Reid was born on a day filled with drama, as her mother went into labor. Her grand-aunt, who happened to share the same birthday, had a say in naming her. After a group effort, Kerry-Ann's name was chosen, with "Kerry-Ann" receiving the final nod. Though other names were considered, she was named Kerry-Ann after her mom's husband's sister-in-law. As a result, Kerry-Ann has a unique name with a special backstory to share.
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Childhood Memories: "For the first three years of your life, your foot didn't touch the ground. You were a queen."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:11:1600:13:45
Growing Up Poor: "As a child, I did not think I was poor."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:17:0500:20:40
Adapting to Winter Life in Brooklyn: "Just having to learn how to dress, dress warmly. I didn't like to wear hats, but I had to put something on my head to wear layers. That was an adjustment that nobody can accurately prepare you for."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:37:5700:39:37
Making College Decisions as an Immigrant Student: "I went to the school that gave me the most money."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:42:3100:43:57
Teenage Party Stories: "We had those opportunities to go out and go out by ourselves, even though we were still in high school, under 1718. But we just knew we had to be responsible."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:49:5300:51:14
Navigating Career Paths: "The guiding factor is...is this something that I really enjoy doing in every one of my jobs."— Kerry-Ann Reid 00:53:0700:55:28
The Creative Process: "Everyone remembers that famous line Erica Badoo said, with Tyrone, I'm an artist, and I'm sensitive about ma. So it becomes a part of the creative process, and it just reminds me we have to be careful who we share that initial work with."— Kerry-Ann Reid 01:01:0701:03:18
How to Overcome Creative Burnout: "What I realized I was going through what I recognize with. A lot of artists like you get creatively burnt out. And I have experienced a creative burnout, and I needed something different to do."— Kerry-Ann Reid 01:05:2801:10:05
"Prioritizing the Audience in Podcasting: 'Without the people who listen to the podcast, we don't have an industry, period.'"— Kerry-Ann Reid 01:14:1701:17:58
The Dangers of Working for the Algorithm: "And the more they get us to create, the more we get into this hamster wheel of creating. And we're thinking we'll get more downloads, we'll get more listen, and we're just working for the algorithm as opposed to working for the audience."— Kerry-Ann Reid 01:17:5801:19:30
[00:17:05] "Growing up in a 'boarded house': Childhood memories"
[00:37:57] "The Caribbean Kid's Winter Adjustment Struggle"
[00:42:31] "Choosing a College Based on Financial Aid"
[00:49:53] "Strict Rules and Trust: My Party Experience"
[00:53:07] Navigating my Meandering Career Path: Insights from a Podcast Editor
[01:01:07] "Overcoming Creative Blocks through Constructive Feedback"
[01:05:28] "From Creative Burnout to Breadfruit Media Success"
[01:14:17] "Podcast Industry Fails to Connect with Audiences"
[01:17:58] "Prioritizing Audience Over Algorithm: A Podcast Editor's Journey"
Raphael Harry [00:00:00]:
Welcome to White Label american Podcast. This is a podcast that brings you bold, in depth interviews with interesting people that are mostly immigrants taking down artificial walls one story at a time. This is a podcast that empowers immigrants to share their stories and listen to those of others. Thank you for joining us.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:00:24]:
Raphael Harry [00:00:31]:
Welcome to a brand new episode of White Label American. I'm your host. Raphael harry. Thank you for joining us today. I am honored to have a very special guest. And before we begin, I would like to thank everyone who's been showing love and support, giving us five stars on your favorite podcasting platform. If you haven't done that, what you waiting for, man? Weather has changed. Spring is here. Be a nice person. Don't make me come finding your dream. So hey, do the right thing. Otherwise I might send John week after you were Bayaga. You don't want Biaga coming to find you. It's an immigrant podcast, so we can pull scary person from each person's culture, from any culture out there. And I might pull one from Mali too. We have Himalayan hiding in the studio here, so don't make me do that. So do the right thing. Go to www.whitelabelamerican.com. Can give reviews over there. Five stars only. If you want to give less than five stars, papayaga will come find you. So you can give us donations. We accept dollars, pound, stellar euros. If you want to give Naira, bullabulla will come for you too. Nigerians. Know what I mean by that? So, yeah, we don't do that here too. So with that being said, we don't want to waste time on any other thing. Buy our match. Give us love. Show love, and we show love back to you. You can support us on Patreon for as low as $3. We have the last of us discussions over there. There's more shows. We're talking about everything everywhere, all at once. We have Wakanda Forever and other good shows. Immigrants love to talk, so we have other things we're talking about. And maybe the African Nations Cup and other things will be coming up too. So what else? Yeah, I think we've done all the announcements, so let's jump to today's guest. I'm more interested in the guest. So we have someone who's based here in New York. She's responsible for Breadfruit media. It brings a couple of podcasts under her company, Bridge to you. Carry on, friends. Strictly Facts. I've been loving that podcast. I've been learning some great history from the Caribbean just by listening to Strictly Facts. So, man, it's just fantastic work that she's been doing. So with that being said, let's meet Carrie Ann Reed Brown. She's a fantastic woman, entrepreneur, mentor, leveraging her expertise and years of experience to give feedback and guidance to help podcasters develop and grow. Welcome. Thank you for joining us. How are you doing today, carrie Ann?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:03:24]:
Thank you. Thank you for having me. I loved your intro. If we are going to send anybody, the Jamaicans will have the dupees coming for any listener who has support.
Raphael Harry [00:03:37]:
I love that word.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:03:38]:
Raphael Harry [00:03:39]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:03:40]:
Raphael Harry [00:03:41]:
That's why I love Jamaicans. Your lingua always just make me excited and happy.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:03:48]:
Yeah, we're all family.
Raphael Harry [00:03:50]:
Big time. Big time. I think from the first time I came across anything Jamaican, it's always just been love. So, yes, straight up family. So, welcome again. How are you doing today?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:04:03]:
I'm doing good. I'm excited. Looking forward to having a wonderful conversation with you today.
Raphael Harry [00:04:09]:
Me too. So let's go to the very beginning. Have you ever wondered what the meaning of your name is and if there's a story behind it?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:04:19]:
Which name? My personal name or breadfruit media.
Raphael Harry [00:04:23]:
Let's start with your personal name.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:04:25]:
Carrie Ann. There's a running joke. Almost everybody in the Caribbean is an Anne Carrian. Shelly Ann stacy Ann Terianne, tony Ann. There's a lot of Annes, and that is a holdover from our British colony. So the name Carrie is actually Irish gaelic. And Anne, of course, is a nod to the Queen as a lot of places in the Caribbean, not just Jamaica, has Anne. So you have a parish in Jamaica called St. Anne and all that good stuff.
Raphael Harry [00:05:01]:
Wow. I did not think about how many ants yeah.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:05:10]:
Carrie's accounts in Ireland. Carrie Ann, Shelley Ann, Stacy Ann, Tony Ann. All the ants. Katie Ann. There's a bunch of ants. So a lot of times when I say I'm Carrie Ann, people are like, You're Caribbean, right? Yes.
Raphael Harry [00:05:26]:
Wow. That means wow. If anyone is Secret Service agent from Jamaica, they definitely can't go with Anne.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:05:41]:
No, they can't go with Anne.
Raphael Harry [00:05:43]:
Got to strike that out. Okay. Wow. Kerry also speaks because I know there's an Irish history with Jamaica.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:05:51]:
Raphael Harry [00:05:52]:
So Kerry also speaks to the Irish history.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:05:55]:
Yes. The Irish is what the British Empire at the time, they used to be the overseers on the plantations, or the Irish would go if they were criminals, they would go and serve time and be like, the hands on the plantation and so forth, so forth.
Raphael Harry [00:06:15]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:06:21]:
And you could learn some of that on Strictly Facts, because we talk about Jamaican language, Caribbean language, and where that came from. And there are some Irish mixed and English and African language mixed in the Jamaican language.
Raphael Harry [00:06:37]:
Wow. That's why I love this question, because you don't know.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:06:43]:
Raphael Harry [00:06:44]:
The whole new world opens up so much and, like, man, my brain is just going pop up. I'm trying to suppress, like, come down, come down. Let's stay on track. Let's stay on track. So Carrie Ann is a combination of two names brought together as one.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:07:03]:
Raphael Harry [00:07:04]:
Okay, so that would be two different meanings.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:07:07]:
Yes, but I prefer Carrie Ann. A shortened version of my name is held for very personal relationships, like my mom, my husband, my siblings.
Raphael Harry [00:07:18]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:07:19]:
Carrie Ann is the name I prefer.
Raphael Harry [00:07:22]:
Okay. And was there any particular story as to why you were giving those names?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:07:28]:
Yes, there is.
Raphael Harry [00:07:30]:
That you can share.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:07:33]:
So the story my mom said, my grand aunt, which is my grandmother's youngest sister, turns out that we have the same birthday. And there was a whole lot of drama around when my mom went into labor, and she did the honor of giving me my name because her husband's basically her sister in law. So a whole bunch of people were involved in picking my name, but it came through my grand aunt and her sister in law liking the name Carrian. But there was a Marissa thrown in there that was up for consideration, a bunch of other names. So it landed on Carrie Ann. That's the story I was told.
Raphael Harry [00:08:21]:
Fascinating. So is it common for women to pick names for kids?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:08:28]:
I don't know. I mean, my experiences with my children, it's a very democratic approach. I give all the options and people might put in names, and I tell everybody to vote on it. And we did a combination, but I'm extra. So that's how my kids got their names. But there was a story, and I'm not going to say it. My grandmother had a name that they wanted to give my brother. My uncle was like, no way, and he did not get that name. So I would say that the choosing of names is an equal opportunity process with men and women.
Raphael Harry [00:09:11]:
Okay, I like that. Yeah. Because I know some cultures have names can come from women, some come from men. I use this question to also find out about different cultures.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:09:31]:
I don't think Jamaican culture specifically have even though, I guess traditionally most of the Caribbean, it's a matriarchal society in a way. Like, women are centered. It's confusing because then there's talks of patriarchy, but the women, they are the center of the family in some ways, depending on the makeup, I guess. But it varies. Everyone has a different family set up. Okay. I know my grandmother was the boss.
Raphael Harry [00:10:05]:
Awesome. So with that being said, can you introduce us to where you were born and what your childhood was like?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:10:14]:
So, yeah, I was born in Jamaica, and I had a great childhood because I come from large families. So my grandmother was one of nine. So you can imagine her siblings, their kids, their kids kids. And one thing about growing up in the Caribbean, we don't say first cousin, second cousin, you're just cousins, because most of the time you are all living a similar vicinity. So I had a cousin across the street, next door, down the road, down this road. So everyone was everywhere. And then on my dad's side, I just had very large family. And it was one of my cousins made the joke that said your foot didn't touch the ground until you were three because I was the first baby. And so they spoiled me a lot.
Raphael Harry [00:11:14]:
Oh, fucking amazing.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:11:16]:
Yes. All the guys spoiled me because I have uncles. I have only uncles. And so they just took me around, and I was always in somebody's hand. And they were like, yeah, for the first three years of your life, your foot didn't touch ground. You were a queen. They loved to remind me of that. But I had a good childhood. I loved being around my family. I was always around the old because I was so young and everyone was older. It was just being around them, observing them, admiring them. They were football players. My dad was a big football player. He passed away last year. And when we had his funeral, his coach was talking about when my father did a head dive for a ball. And there's like, nobody would have done that. And he was just known as this big ball. And I have a lot of family members who are just really great soccer football players. And I grew up just in that environment. I just enjoyed it. I had a lot of great experiences. And when I moved to this country, and the first time I moved back to Jamaica, after I moved to this country, I was telling a friend, like, I don't like this song because it was a Beanie Man song. And he was like, big up and trust all the ghetto girls. And I was like, Why am I for big up? Only the ghetto girls. And my friend was like, Where do you think you come from? I was like, I didn't think I am from the ghetto. And I didn't think I was poor either. But when I shared the story with my teacher, when I came back, the summer, it's like it's a state of mind. You didn't grow up thinking that way. You had very rich experiences. You didn't have that. And so my childhood was spent summers going to different places in Jamaica where tourists would go to, and I went on those on church trips because we lived in church, so there was always something. So I had a very interesting childhood. My grand uncles were fishermen, and when I'd spend the summer with my dad's side of the family, which literally the airport separated both communities, I would get up early, and it was like watching them go out and come back with big marlins and all these other fishes, and people would come and buy. So for me, it was just an amazing experience growing up.
Raphael Harry [00:13:45]:
Wow. So, first of all, condolences on the passing away of your dad. You mentioned you were born in Jamaica, but you didn't say what city in Jamaica.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:13:57]:
I am from Montego Bay.
Raphael Harry [00:13:59]:
Jamaica Bay? Yeah, I've heard of that place.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:14:01]:
Raphael Harry [00:14:02]:
Because I don't want people to have that picture of, oh, Jamaica is one big city. It's multiple cities. Montego Bay. I'm thinking of somewhere else. Montego Bay is not the capital, though.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:14:22]:
Montego Bay is the second city.
Raphael Harry [00:14:24]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:14:25]:
We are the tourist capital of Jamaica, and it has the largest airport in the region. And so most people, if they're going to Negril or Ochreas, they're flying into Montego Bay and then driving to either destination.
Raphael Harry [00:14:40]:
So one thing that you said that I relate a lot to is when you were talking about not thinking that you grow up poor. I think I've been doing the podcast for a little bit, and that's when I can't remember who I was talking to. But I made a similar summary. Looking back, there were times when because I knew people who were poor, right?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:15:11]:
You're comparing yourself.
Raphael Harry [00:15:13]:
Those were people I considered poor.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:15:15]:
Raphael Harry [00:15:15]:
But there were days that I 100% remember clearly where there was no food in the house, and I've been saving my pocket change and all that. And family didn't hide it. We knew there was no food. And I had nieces and nephews, and my mom was like, we'll have to wait until she gets to work and see if they'll finally get paid. She was a senior civil servant, a federal civil servant. And I was like, oh, I got some change on me. Can I borrow you? Maybe if I say borrow. Right. But then I was thinking I was it was the way I said it back then as a kid. As a teenager, I thought I had my shoulders pumped up, but I think she used borrow, like, okay, can you borrow me? To make it sound like it wasn't like she was in need.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:16:13]:
Raphael Harry [00:16:14]:
But to make me feel good that it wasn't like, we're in dire straits.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:16:20]:
Raphael Harry [00:16:21]:
And I feel, oh, yeah, I'm coming to the family's rescue. But things were bad because there were periods where even often now, it's still happening in Nigeria, where the federal government doesn't pay certain workouts for a long period of time, depending on what job you do and how the people supposed to survive. So what if the families, how they survive in people don't consider that. So there are people who have to go borrow, people who have to take drastic measures. And we faced that a couple of times and was money I've been saving. And then there were times where I blocked, give back that money that you owe me. And then, who pays the rent in this house? Do you pay rent and all that. As a kid, that's what I was remembering. I'll be holding grudges.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:17:05]:
Right. For me, as an adult and a parent, you look back and you're like, oh, okay. There were some challenges there. But in the moment, as a child, I did not think I was poor. I think how I related that I wasn't well off because our house was structured right. Yes. And it's so interesting, I was having this conversation the other day with my husband. So our house is what, the front half of the house is what we called a boarded house, right? It has regular rooms. It has an enclosed veranda, and then the back of the house was concrete, right? So it had different structures. And so in that way, I was like, well, I don't have a fully concrete house, right? But as we watch, like, HDTV, and we're looking like, that's the type of house we grew up with and didn't like it. And now they call it shiplap. And that's literally the structure of our house. The front part of the house, I think one part of it, it was both economical, but it was also practical. Economical was they couldn't afford a fully concrete house. But practical, if you think of electricity and heat in Jamaica at the time, a fully concrete house is not necessarily the best for a very tropical weather, especially if you don't have resources to cool the house a particular way. So that was that. And then when you look back at it, the things, the foods that we were eating, I said, okay, yeah, maybe their money was tight, but I never saw it that way. I know I always had food to eat. I know I had to go to school. There was never a day or a period where my school fee wasn't paid or I didn't have food. We always had and if we didn't have, like I said, a cousin live across the street next door. And what I loved about growing up in the Caribbean at the time, the yard is filled with food. There's a breadfruit tree in the front of the yard. You could pick it, you roast it. There's the ackee tree in the yard. Also, you could tell that the community understood that different people had different financial challenges, right? So if you go to a store here in the US. You're buying a bread. You're buying a whole loaf of bread. Back then, growing up, and I know it couldn't be only my community, but if you go to the store, you can buy half a bread, a quarter of bread. You could buy one stick of butter instead of the whole pack or half or a quarter. Instead of buying a hand of bananas, you could buy two fingers of bananas, right? So the community accommodated for people in their different scenarios. So, like, we grew up in a house where there was indoor plumbing and we had electricity, so we sold ice to our neighbors because they wanted dinner and cool drinks, so we sold ice. Or my grandmother would make certain pastries, and she'd sell that that's another way that she was able to bring income in.
Raphael Harry [00:20:40]:
She just reminded me of something that I think that was three episodes ago with Yuan Wang. She grew up in southern China, and she was talking about growing up at a time when there weren't big supermarkets around and there was more of a relationship with the mom and pop store around. And it reminded me of just what you said reminded me of that, because I remember because one thing about me was that we moved around my mom being a federal civil servant. You got transferred around the country, so we didn't stay in one place for too long. But you could go to the little store and just like you guys, like, you got instead of buying the whole pack of sugar, we mostly got the cubes, the sugars that were cubes. So instead of buying the whole pack, you'd be like, Give me I need only five cubes of sugar. And they'll open a box and give you five cubes and stuff, like a can of milk. You couldn't get some of it. You have to buy the can.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:22:00]:
Yes. Some things you could.
Raphael Harry [00:22:02]:
Some other stuff, they could split it. I remember cigarettes because I used to go buy cigarettes from my uncle. So give me change. Yeah, give me two sticks and then give you two sticks. There was a relationship, but back then, the dream of everybody was like, oh, I wish I could go shop at a supermarket. But you didn't understand what you'll be giving up to go shop at a supermarket, because there was, like, only one spot market in the town. Exclusive. That was the name of market. I remember. And I remember when my brother in law, who had moved to South Africa, came home and you had to show off. You have to take everybody go shop down. Like, oh, yeah, we're so excited. But you don't know what you're giving up because you can't say, hey, man, can I come pay at the end of the month? You can't get credit. No, you got to pay right there and then. So all these things were included as part of community. But we don't know. We don't understand all that accommodation.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:22:58]:
So the story I told about selling the ice and the pastries, that was my grandmother, my mom's mom. So my father's mom, when I visited her, she was the night. Think of it like the Night corner store. So she had the same little sandwich biscuits, the cookie cream biscuits or whatever we call them. And after the regular mom and Pop shops closed at night, at night they would come and knock and say, can I get two rizzla? Two cigarette, too cracked. And I used to love playing Shop because it was the only time I got to do that exchange in the currency. Also, my brother and I loved it because then we ate all of the stuff that we liked. But to me, I'm not trying to say that as an adult, I can see as adults, they had challenges, but they did a good job of us as the kids, not necessarily experiencing that lack. And if there was lack and they had to be creative, we enjoyed being part of this creative process of, how are we going to make a meal, how are we going, that type of thing. So that's what I remembered.
Raphael Harry [00:24:15]:
I relate to that, too. And if anyone listening has any similar experiences, feel free to let us know. Hit the contact form on www dot white labelamerican. Or you can leave a voice message, hit the mic also on the website and share your experiences with us. All right, so I think you may have touched on this question that I'm going to ask, but, yeah, feel free to hit me with your best answer. So what do you consider your favorite childhood memory to be at this very moment?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:25:00]:
I don't have one. I honestly don't have one. There's so many swirling.
Raphael Harry [00:25:06]:
Give us two.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:25:07]:
All right. So my favorite childhood memory would be anytime my grandmother took us on church trips and we would travel around the island. So every time there was a church trip, we went to a different historical spot or a recreational spot in jamaica. So that collectively would be wonderful childhood memories because I'm there with my friends, we're experiencing a new part of the island. So I loved it. We've gone to so many places. Lovers leap is a beautiful place in Jamaica. The story is two slaves, it couldn't be together and they jumped off the leap the cliff to their death.
Raphael Harry [00:25:54]:
There a song about that maybe, I don't know. Sounds familiar.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:25:59]:
Lovers leap. And then we've gone to treasure beach, which is most people know Jamaica for white sandy beaches. Treasure beach is black sand.
Raphael Harry [00:26:11]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:26:12]:
Yes. And it has waves almost like I guess if you would want to go surfing, you'd try the beach at treasure beach because the water is more conducive to that type of water to do surfing. And that was amazing. That was like, wow, I've never seen this. And I've lived in Jamaica, so it was beautiful.
Raphael Harry [00:26:35]:
That is amazing.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:26:36]:
Raphael Harry [00:26:38]:
I've never heard of black sand beach in jamaica. I don't think you can quantify that experience.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:26:47]:
Yeah, it's different. It's completely different. I was like, the water is rough. Why is there so many waves? But it was just like, this is a completely different experience. And if I told anyone that we did this, they wouldn't believe me. So those collective trips were wonderful. A childhood memory. My first concert my dad took me to was reggae sunsplash.
Raphael Harry [00:27:13]:
Reggae sun splash. Yes, there's a show, reggae sun splash on Sundays on state TV.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:27:22]:
Raphael Harry [00:27:22]:
I can't remember last time he just brought memories that I forgot about.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:27:30]:
So, yeah, that was one childhood memory that I really loved. I got to see the first time I saw barris Hammond perform. So this was what, like 1992? 1st time I saw barris hammond perform. First time I saw boujer manton perform. And then a childhood memory would be 95. This is when buju first came out with his till shiloh album. I was in Jamaica at the time and his video, a lot of the visuals from that album was shot in and around Montego Bay and his I Want To Be Loved video. I remember being in the area, trying to get from one side to the other side and it was all blocked off because he was filming. So I loved it. And then later that 95, I went to Madison Square Garden for the first time because Bojabanto was on tour with promoting his Till Shiloh album. So that was amazing. Those are some standout moments for me.
Raphael Harry [00:28:31]:
Reggae Song Splash to bubble your head yeah, you brought a memory that yeah, that used to be a big part of our Sunday. That was city. Yeah, I think that was the first time. I think that was the first time I saw you. One of the greatest reggae artists that we just loved for absolutely no reason. And that is Yellow Man.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:29:02]:
Oh, king yellow man zunga zunga zang.
Raphael Harry [00:29:08]:
He doesn't know how many fans he hasn't been my generation because I think he may have been the first albino we had seen singing and then we realized that we had Africans who albino singing too. But we just love seeing him. I remember kids, other kids were my age and wow, just see this. Wow, look at this yellow guy singing. Wow. Show him on Sunday, show will come up on State TV. And at first I think I used to be mad because I think they stopped showing cartoons and they replace it with Reggae Song Splash. I used to be a lot of anger at first and then we start bumping our heads. The music is not bad, though.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:29:55]:
Reggae Sunsplash was a really big festival for many years in Jamaica and a lot of people came down. It started in the late 70s, early eighty s. And it was seven days of shows and it would go all the way in the overnight to the wee hours of the morning. And it was just something it was just like an all night thing. So reggae sunsplash is no more but there is reggae some fest and that was because change in venues and stuff like that and reggae some fest still happens every summer.
Raphael Harry [00:30:38]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:30:39]:
And it's actually coming up. But it was a big part because Reggae Sun Splash and Reggae Sunfest, they are both based in Montego Bay. So as growing up in Montego Bay, you get to experience that wow.
Raphael Harry [00:30:55]:
Shout out to Montego Bay. But I'm glad I got to see that on TV and it's like it had been erased from a memory.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:31:06]:
I'm glad I'm helping to jog some memories.
Raphael Harry [00:31:12]:
Because we always amazed back then as kids like, who are these people? Where are these people call from? We always see the crowd like, wow, yeah. But there was no information about where they are performing, where this concert. It always looked like, I think, to our kid, memories, mindset back then, it's like on the day of the show, on TV. Then the crowd just shows up like, wow, this is amazing. That's all the discussions that we had as kids. Wow. These musicians, anytime they are singing forgotten people that just show up, it's amazing. They call it reggae song splash wow. On Sunday, these people don't go to church. They just come here. Oh, man. Well, ignorance is bliss. I have to hit up some of my classmates now. I solve the riddle.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:32:10]:
People plan months in advance. They're starting promotion. You buy your tickets, you're there for the whole seven days. And recently, my friend's father passed away. And at his memorial service, his friends were telling the story how they were at one night at Reggae Sunsplash and they wanted to see Dennis Brown perform. And it was seven in the morning and Dennis Brown didn't hit the stage yet. And by the time they left, it was 11:00 in the day, nine or 11:00 in the morning. And I was just like, it's just so fascinating. But as kids, because we grew up and that was part of our culture, we didn't realize, like, my gosh, you've been here all night. All night, into the morning. The sun is blazing and you're at this concert. So, yeah, it's a big thing.
Raphael Harry [00:33:03]:
Wow. That has to be one of the best. I'm ranking as one of the favorite channel memories from you. All right, so we're going to take a quick break right now. We'll come back, we're going to jump into your arrival in America, and then we'll get to Bread Fruit Media. Hi, everyone. If you're new to the podcast or a returning listener and you enjoy what we are doing here, did you know that you could enjoy more of our content and also support our work via Patreon? For as little as $3 per month, you get access to loads of bonus content that you'll find nowhere and be the first to latest news. Don't miss out. Go to Patreon.com White Labelamericanpod or just search for White Labelamerican podcast on Patreon. P-A-T-R-E-O-N. Welcome back and thank you for staying with us. So, Carrie Ann, you decide to well, you make the migration to United States. Was there any particular reason for New York? Was there a reason for United States or instead of United Kingdom, like many others tend to go or Canada?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:34:45]:
My immigration was not my choice. So my mom, she moved to the US, New York, specifically because her father lived here and he filed for us because that was the immigration option at the time. That when you have family, you could bring other family. And so that's how we ended up in New York. I didn't learn until 20, 13, 14 that what my mom did was unusual. So my mom came to this country and she brought all of us with her at the same time. And yes, so we were all figuring out life in the US at. The same time. And so, yeah, I didn't have a choice. I was still in school. I left Jamaica at the end of my 9th grade year, which is what we collectively from the British Empire colonization process called third form, and moved to the US.
Raphael Harry [00:35:50]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:35:51]:
Raphael Harry [00:35:52]:
Yes. I'm still struggling with the grade system here. I'm beginning to learn I might get the hang of it now that I have a kid.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:36:02]:
Raphael Harry [00:36:03]:
But, yeah, I've never fully gotten the grasp of it. It's still either junior secondary, primary school.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:36:11]:
Primary school, secondary school, and then university level.
Raphael Harry [00:36:17]:
I talk about schooling, so people are like, what? Yeah, the British deal with me. Sorry. So you arrive in New York. What time of the year? What season of the year did you arrive?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:36:32]:
Yeah, so I'll tell the story. So it was the summer of 1993, and we all file on American Airlines and fly into JFK. And I live near the airport in Jamaica, so I'm used to seeing planes, but I was not ready to come in. When you're coming into landing from JFK, you're almost on the highway, because at one point, it's like, hovering close to the street. The airport is huge. So it was just like, Are we going to land on these cars? That's what I felt like. And so we landed at JFK, and my uncle picks me up with the rest of my family, and I'm like, It is late at night. There are a bunch of people on the streets sitting, playing domino's and not doing anything. You have to understand that even at that time in Jamaica, it's late, people aren't outside doing all of these things that I was seeing. So it was a hot August night that we moved to New York, so.
Raphael Harry [00:37:41]:
At least the weather was on your side.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:37:43]:
Raphael Harry [00:37:45]:
And then came winter. Winter, yes. How was that switch for you?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:37:57]:
Well, there was a gradual build up to it. So even though winter was coming, as Caribbean kids, we're still outside standing on the step, kind of looking, because this concept of always being inside the house was still kind of new. So growing up, you know that you have the house and you have the yard, you can't go outside the gate. So because in Brooklyn, there's no yard, really. You're standing on the stoop, and you don't leave the stoop. So as it was getting colder, I'll be on the step, like, shivering, but looking up and down the block, because I'm not used to just being inside the house. And when winter came, I remember the first time I was getting ready for school, and I'm like, they're like, you should take a shower the night before. And I'm like, I don't do that. In Jamaica, you take a shower in the mornings, you take a shower first thing in the morning. Like, what is this mess about not bathing the morning to go? And I tell you took that shower, went outside, I was like, Lord Jesus. So adjusting to those things. Or I remember my hands being cold, and I came home and turn on the hot water and washing my hands, and I learned very quickly, don't do that again, because it made the frostbites worse. So just having to learn how to dress, dress warm. I didn't like to wear hats, but I had to put something on my head to wear layers. That was an adjustment that nobody can accurately prepare you for.
Raphael Harry [00:39:40]:
Yeah, the shower one. Yeah, that's another one I've forgotten about. But I was 25 when I arrived here, so I got this. Let me give you no advice, even from the airport. I already said that a couple of times, but I already joined Navy. I joined Navy shortly after. And then you're supposed to be grown. Yeah.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:40:09]:
When you first come here, that's an adjustment. Once you've lived here, I think it's like nothing to get up in the mornings to shower and then get ready to go out. But when you're first adjusting to the weather, they were just like, you want to ease yourself into this situation.
Raphael Harry [00:40:23]:
I arrived during winter. Yeah, I arrived November 1. So Virginia and then Northern Virginia, and it was the cold already begun. Well, it was still nice, but for me, coming straight from Nigeria, that was winter already. And I was like, Hell, no. This is terrible. And then join Navy. I've survived. Then join Navy. Move. Go down south, Mississippi, come back November again. I'm down in Virginia Beach. I don't have the car. You got to walk to your duty station. And I still got that mindset of, you got to take a shower first thing in the morning. You're doing all that, and then you now go outside.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:41:16]:
And to just even lotion yourself properly.
Raphael Harry [00:41:20]:
I haven't tried to look at some of the photos back then because I know it's ashy.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:41:26]:
Or even adjusting to the time change. I remember when the time changed, I was like, 03:00. It is dark out here. What's happening? I was just like, I'm not used to this lifestyle. You went from 09:00 light outside to wait. We lose 1 hour of sleep. Because I come from Jamaica, we don't observe daylight savings time. So wait, what you gain an hour? Whatever the situation was, you gain an hour because you're falling back. Right? And then it gets really dark, and you're just like, Why? Night comes so quick. So those adjustments were just part of the acclamation. It was just a culture shock.
Raphael Harry [00:42:16]:
So going through all that, how did you navigate when it was time? Did this ShowMaking when it was time for you to go to college?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:42:31]:
I went to the school that gave me the most money. I mean, the family was very excited because I got accepted to a lot of colleges. Right. So applied to I think at the time, you were encouraged to apply to for CUNY, for Sunni. So CUNY City University of New York sunni State University of New York and I applied to a bunch of other schools and I got accepted to a school in DC. And my uncle was like, go here. And I was just like, I don't know if I wanted to go here. So everyone at my school teachers had different ideas of the schools that they wanted me to go to and I ended up the other thing of note was college was two years after I came here, so I was still new here. The idea of going away to college, I don't know if I was fully ready for that because I was still new to the country. And so I ended up doing a compromise. I stayed in state but stayed at a college that was in Pleasantville Wirecliffe. So it's like maybe an hour and a half outside of the city as opposed to going away. I'd probably make different choices now, but it was hard navigating that because again, my mom came to the country at the same time. So we are all learning about this college process and what it involves.
Raphael Harry [00:44:00]:
So you were staying on campus?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:44:01]:
Yes, I did stay on campus.
Raphael Harry [00:44:04]:
So that was another.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:44:08]:
Yeah, it was another experience.
Raphael Harry [00:44:10]:
Experience in Dallas, but that also probably helped to create the carry on that we have here today.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:44:19]:
Well, yeah, my experience in college is a little different because I guess culturally, like, you told the story that your uncle sent you to the store to buy the cigarettes, right, but you wouldn't dare smoke that cigarette.
Raphael Harry [00:44:35]:
Oh, hell no.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:44:36]:
Exactly the same thing. They would send you to the bar to buy stuff, so you wouldn't dare. So I grew up around this where alcohol, cigarettes or stuff was there, but you didn't use it. Right. Whereas when I went to college, this idea of this binge drinking or drinking a lot on a Thursday night was very new to me. I'm in Brooklyn, we're having a lot of house and basement parties and this excessive drinking wasn't something that we're used to. I mean, it's there, but it wasn't like, oh my God, we're going drinking in this whole beer cult. That wasn't something so that was interesting and just watching how people got really drunk and how beer was a big thing and I didn't necessarily relate to that. So that was also a very new experience. And Thursday night was the party night and I guess it made sense because people went home on a weekend, whereas we're coming from a culture where it's like, it's Friday, we go party Friday and Saturday. Right. So it was just very different. It was, in a way, getting to see other cultures outside of my immediate culture, my Brooklyn enclave, and just experiencing a wider culture.
Raphael Harry [00:45:54]:
Yeah. So a gentleman who was on the podcast not long ago, and I was actually going to introduce him to you. He's going to listen to this episode anyway. So, you know, I'm talking about he's of Caribbean heritage, but he grew up in Africa and has a wonderful story. He's here in New York. And yeah, I was already thinking of introducing him to you. He had something similar because he attended college in New York. Walter, he knows who I'm talking about. You two had almost word for word. You just said almost the same thing.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:46:31]:
It's very different for us. You grew up around alcohol. You grew up around these things, but you don't use it. You don't do any of that stuff. So experiencing how people react to it, it was almost like in those moments, I'm grateful because I feel like it led to maturity and I made some good decisions or wasn't put in a position where I'd have to make a poor decision because I was just like, I don't really care for alcohol, and I'm okay with that.
Raphael Harry [00:47:07]:
And another thing that remind me of is to add three wonderful women from my daughter's school, and two of them are from Germany, one is from Switzerland. And they were talking about one of their shocks, culture shocks with American educational system. And they were like, they can't understand why college is like this. Binge drinking for them. For Europeans, it's like they got to be teenagers when teenagers, they got to be teenagers. But it's like American college is where people never got to be teenagers, get to be teenagers in college. So they were always fascinated by that. We always seen Americans do that in college. And even in the Navy, I got to see that. But I'll put it that way. I wasn't aware that this was the teenage thing happening because when I was stationed in Bahrain, we had this thing where all the ships coming, going through the Middle East area, we stop in Bahrain and before they come, like all of us, we have to disappear from Bays. Because you don't want to be around when ships coming because they've been on water for like maybe three or four months.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:48:33]:
Right. So they're at Liberty, and they're going to go crazy.
Raphael Harry [00:48:35]:
But the drinking age overseas is 18, right?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:48:41]:
And that's the thing. Culturally, too, in the Caribbean, it's the same thing.
Raphael Harry [00:48:45]:
Well, these kids, once they come out, it's like the base has beer taps everywhere just specifically for these ships coming in. And these kids beer here I can drink. And they just run and start putting them. It's like, dude, the beer is not running. It's not running away. Just drink it's, okay? And they just start acting a fool. And you're like, wow. Yeah, foreigners on the base be like, wow, Americans. Do you guys not be in your country or what's happening here? People just be staring like, wow, these Americans. Yeah, it's Americans. I don't know how to tell you, man. Just let's go outside and hang out outside of this. Americans passing out and falling down everywhere. They're like, I don't know. If you want to make a video, you can make a video, that's fine. But by the time you start looking at that and looking at the college binge drinking, like, oh, yeah, it's something that people never got to be teenagers, and they just that, oh, I'm free now. I'm free. Let me drink everything. Now.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:49:53]:
I could see that because I kind of said that by the time I got to college, I've been to parties. The rule was at the time, whenever we went to parties, it was my cousin and my brother. All three of us had to go. I mean, you still had to ask my mother, like, two months in advance of the party, right? If you could go, and you better be on the straight and narrow, P's and Q's, all the way up to the minute you want to leave. Because if she feels like, you know what? You guys not going anywhere. You're just not going anywhere, right? So we had those opportunities to go out and go out by ourselves, even though we were still in high school, under 1718. But we just knew we had to be responsible. And also, there's a level of trust that they gave us that we just said, you know what? We honored those in those moments. So, like, if Mommy said, all right, you guys could go, but get home by 12:00, we're like, all right, let's reach home by 1145. So the next party, we were very strategic about the approach, but there were moments where Mommy definitely was just like, she cramped our style. We were just like, all right. She said, Come home 08:00. Like, 08:00. When she talk about come home 08:00. And then my mom came up to school. It was like, did not tell you to come home.
Raphael Harry [00:51:18]:
Because same for us.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:51:22]:
There was another incident.
Raphael Harry [00:51:24]:
We looked for the legal loopholes we could use to listen.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:51:27]:
There was another incident where we were at a party and there were gunshots. Not at the party, but in the neighborhood. And I don't know how my uncle whip around the car. He had an old school BMW, and he comes home. He comes he's like, you don't hear gunshots. And all three of us had to pilot to the car. We were like, but it's not happened at this party. It's like, I don't care. Let's go. So those are just moments where you're just like you're just, like.
Raphael Harry [00:52:02]:
Shout out to the uncle.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:52:05]:
Yeah, we definitely had moments where we're just like, oh, my gosh, they're killing our style. But at the same time, they gave us so much freedom. We had a party. We had a basement. We had a lot of parties there, and they allowed us to have parties. So I guess by the time I got to college, there was just like, this isn't new. Been here done this. I've been to parties where adults were there. Like my cousin was sharing the food and I was behind the bar helping to serve. But you didn't drink it because you just knew that like what you did what? There you go.
Raphael Harry [00:52:44]:
There you go. So you in college. How did you know what career path when did you decide this was a career path you were going to go with? Was it before you got into college or while in college?
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:53:07]:
My career path has how I ended in my career because even though I podcast, I do podcast production, I still have a full time job and my career has always been meandering. I lean into wherever it takes me and leads me. The one thing I knew for sure was in high school, I had the opportunity to do Mood Court and Mock trial and did that competitively in high school. And so I just knew I wanted to be a lawyer. And as the episode that you said you listened to with Shimira, maybe I didn't actually practice law, but I get the talking and the podcast into lawyerly activities. But I went to my second college because I transferred to another college and I took some pre law classes and I was just like, I like this idea, I like the theory. But the writing that accompanies being a lawyer was not something I was feeling at all. And I ended up just doing a bunch of different things before I ended up back into law. Working as a paralegal, leaving the legal field and just working the way where I am. And I think it's leaning into the exploration of what my career meant to me or what my interests were. That's the guiding factor of is this something that I really enjoy doing in every one of my jobs, and I've had multiple jobs. I've worked in interior designs, I've learned so much. I worked in a dentist office. I've done a bunch of different things and they were all interesting and I've made it my own or learned in a particular way. But I think the career that I've had in the last couple of years is well suited to who I am, which is I'm curious. I get to be strategic. I get to organize, do all the things that I want to do, and then it allows room for me to do my podcasting and grow from that, apply skills that I've learned from podcasting to my career and take what I've learned in my full time career and apply business principles to what I do in podcasting.
Raphael Harry [00:55:28]:
Fantastic. So I just got to ask because I know you said the writing, you couldn't deal with the writing, with the law, that's what kind of put you off with law. Now that we have AI, a lot of AI helping. If you had AI around then to help with the writing, would that have changed your perspective on law. No, not the chart GPT type. I'm just on the writing side.
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:56:06]:
The best output from any of these AIS is dependent on the input you give.
Raphael Harry [00:56:12]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:56:13]:
So you still have to give it something good for it to expand on it. Right now, I'm better at it. Here's a moment of vulnerability. The reason why I didn't like writing was I remember I was in a political philosophy class. I loved the class. I loved it. It was like talking head 101. It was just like a bunch of talking. We were talking about everything from tucidities to everything. And when it came to doing the finals or midterms and I'd write the essays, teacher was like, Your writing is crap. And so my final for that class, he was like, I can tell that they didn't spend a lot of time on writing in high school for you because your writing isn't very good. And that broke me.
Raphael Harry [00:57:13]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:57:13]:
So he actually gave me a failing grade, and he said, I'll give you a better grade if you redid this final paper. I never did it. I couldn't recover from that comment.
Raphael Harry [00:57:25]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [00:57:25]:
And so in my head, I say I'm not a good writer. Other people beg to differ. They're like, you're the one I come to proofread my stuff. Right? But I just remember that comment. And so I was just like, yeah, writing isn't for me.
Raphael Harry [00:57:43]:
It is a strong comment. I can relate on that because I once wrote a book when I was someone else has given me a different feedback on that. But I think how old was I then? Probably I was 1112, between eleven and 13. And I wrote a vampire action story. Back then, you didn't know about plagiarism. And I gave it to somebody in my family to read. The person who I thought I was closest to and all I brought. The guy read it and started laughing. I was just laughing. I was like, what the hell is this? So I put my head down and just walk of shame. I walked away and was just laughing. And that's all I just had in my head. Anytime I try to write a story back then, and a group of boys, six of us, and we had an acronym for our first names, but not our first names. We had our names. For some reason, we ended up with Boston Boys. I don't know why we end up with Boston, but yeah, we formed Boston with our names. And we all love to write. We just loved reading and decided we're going to write. And I never brought a story. And then down the line, I started right from arguing about soccer. I will start writing and somebody will invite me to write on our website. And that was the first time I will end up I will do a podcast, but I will have stage fright because I was the only black person there. I claimed back then that was because I thought I was trash, that there was a journalist who was on the panel. I didn't think about a journalist inviting me to come talk on a podcast with other journalists what it meant. But I said I was really black person in my head, I said, oh, I wasn't a journalist. I must have said trash. I refused to listen to it. This was in like 2010, it was black. I blame myself. I was the only black person there. I just stage fright and all that. And by the time I got stationed in the Middle East one day, I just couldn't write. I just couldn't.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:00:03]:
I mean, it was the same thing for me.
Raphael Harry [01:00:04]:
But I try to write stories every now and then. I don't know, I just can't write a story. But it's like that flash. I always have that flashback to that memory of the person laughing. And I wanted the person hit me up and I've proofread the person's book. Person wrote like three or four books down the line, I think over 20 years ago. The person one day, just out of the blue, hit me up. I was like, I remember you wrote one book when you were a kid. What happened? Why didn't you ever write another story? It was a lovely story. Why don't you write? Do you remember your reaction when you read what I wrote? I thought I told you you did a good job and all that. No, it's not the same. No. The person did not remember what he told me. He claimed, I thought I praised you. It was a laugh of shame.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:00:57]:
Yeah, I mean, it was the same thing. And what I've done over the years, I journal a lot. I go through a lot of that's.
Raphael Harry [01:01:06]:
Why I need to journal.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:01:07]:
I just journal every day, just kind of journal. So I got past that I can't write situation. But then I had a recent encounter and something similar. So I'm like, I'm not writing a book. I'll stick to just doing my journal. But those things, they create a block. Like I was telling the engineer earlier about audition and being that experience, it just blocks you and you're trying to get past that, but the feeling of failure or there's a book I read recently called The Artist's Way and the author spoke about these creative wounds because what we're doing, or creative works are children, right? And if someone attacks our child, we get defensive and protective and we don't want to share a new child or creative work with someone else. And it was exactly the experience was just like, I don't know if I want to do this again. If I do this, I don't know if I want to share it because I don't want the humiliation and the hurt of someone rejecting my baby. Everyone remembers that famous mind Erica Badoo said, with Tyrone, I'm an artist, and I'm sensitive about ma. So it comes part of the creative process, and it just reminds me we have to be careful who we share that initial work with. Are they creating a safe space? And it's not to say that, Rafael, you're going to be like, Carrie Ann, that was great. That was awesome. But can you give me feedback that is a constructive true right? Because telling me that my high school didn't pay attention to writing is not going to help me to rewrite it because I don't know exactly what I did wrong. So is it going to be constructive actionable and are you going to give it to me in a space where I can receive it and do what I need to do to improve on it? Because at the end of the day, we want to improve. But are you giving us a feedback in a way that we can hear it, receive it and take action on it?
Raphael Harry [01:03:18]:
Very important. I do write now, though. I've been writing a newsletter, actually, I forgot to send one this week. So I need to remind us for those listening, by the time you get this episode, no worries, you'll have gotten your newsletter. That's the point. I will. But I think one good thing was that I set up a patreon, and I think that's why I said a test run in my writing. And the person who gave me a different perspective when I shared that story with him about he was on the podcast. He's also a writer. He considers himself a critic, although I think he goes too far with it. That's my personal take on him. He likes challenging governments. But he said about the reaction of my family member laughing at me as a kid, he said, Art always has different forms of reactions, and laughter is a reaction. I should always remember that. I said, yeah, but I was a kid. But I get his point. But I said I was a kid, and he said, yeah, he agrees. But I shouldn't forget that I brought out a reaction from the person. So whenever that memory pops up in my head, I should let that be a remembrance. I should remind myself to that I also brought out a positive reaction. I can repopulose that, too, in my brain. Okay. That's one way of looking at it, too. Yeah, for sure. So you started a company called Breadfruit Media. How did you come about the name Breadfruit? How did you settle on the name? Because I'm trying to do something similar to I'm trying to set up my own fame officially. I don't think I've been able to settle on the name, but I love that name that you have. So how did you decide on the name and when did you decide that you're going to start a company? What was your motivation for that?
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:05:28]:
How I came to this name was out of exasperation, really. So let me back up a little bit. So one of the things that I was experiencing after doing my own podcast, I launched my podcast, Carry On French, January 2015. And around 2017, I was feeling exhausted because there's this pressure on creatives. Like, if you're doing this thing, you got to make money. You got to make money. And so you spend a lot of time focusing on how to monetize it and less time on really doing that creative work, which is why you wanted to do this. So it becomes this work, this drudgery of, what am I going to do to make money? And it's like somebody else is always telling you that this is not doing enough to make money. And at the same time, my grandmother, who you've heard me talk about since we've here, she passed away, turned out I was pregnant. So there was all these things happening, and I was just exhausted. And I had to take a step back and said, if I never made a dollar from doing this podcast, would you still want to do it? The answer was unequivocally yes. So I had to take a break. I needed that break emotionally. And I went to a podcast conference. My first time, I went to Podcast Movement in Anaheim in 2017. And I met someone, and he said to me, he's like, Why did you stop? I said, I didn't stop. I did a pause because I'm grieving. I'm grieving, and I'm pregnant. And there's a lot of emotions going on right now. I need to check myself, because almost every episode, I'm, like, whimpering because I missed my grandmother. And the last time I was pregnant, she was here. So there was just the cycle of emotions. And he was like, you made a commitment to record. You should record your podcast. One, he said, Two, like, what else is happening? I said, Everyone is saying you shouldn't focus on the Caribbean. It's too small. They're not checking for you. And he was like, don't let nobody tell you that. And he was like, you are doing something good. You're focusing on your lane, and that's it. And he's like, you could even do much more than what you're doing. And at that conference, a bunch of people said, you should be doing more with Caribbean podcasts. And I was like, I don't know if I want that responsibility. I'm just trying to record my next episode. Because at that point, I had told the audience that I needed a little break just to just breathe emotionally, right? And so in 2018 about I've had the baby, I've restarted the podcast. And it was just like I didn't want to say I'm bored, but I said to my friend, like, what if I quit the podcast? What if I just stopped? And they were just like, what? They couldn't believe it. And what I realized I was going through what I recognize with. A lot of artists like you get creatively burnt out. And I was experienced a creative burnout, and I needed something different to do. And so I was like, you know what? I'm just going to figure out what I'm going to do. At the time, I had a guest on the podcast, and they had a podcast. And I was giving them feedback on the podcast. I'm like, you should be doing this. Why did you do that? This is crazy. You should be doing that. And they were like, why don't you edit or a podcast and produce our podcast? I was like, what are you talking about? And that was the first time I realized that editing or production or being a producer was an option. I didn't even think of myself producing my podcast. I thought I was just the host, but I am the producer of the podcast. And so my friend, I was telling her to do our podcast, and she's like, I will only do it if you edit it. I was like, great. Because of my experience in legal, I was like, all right, if I'm going to do this, there has to be a legal entity. And so I was just like, all right, what am I going to call this? I was looking at what everybody else was calling their stuff, and I was like, I don't know if I like that. I don't want to do this. And I was complaining to someone. I was like, I can't find a name for the show. Might as well just call it Breadfruit Media. And they were like, for real? And I was just like, no, I'm just playing. Because I was trying to find these other names, fancy names, and they were just like, no, I like that name.
Raphael Harry [01:10:05]:
I was like, okay.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:10:06]:
And then I sat on it and I was like, Breadfruit. Well, it could work. Breadfruit is the one thing that every Caribbean country agrees is called Breadfruit. And as I was doing more research, I was like, breadfruit is the one thing that every country in the world agrees is called Breadfruit.
Raphael Harry [01:10:27]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:10:28]:
I'm going to call it Breadfruit. Breadfruit is a colonizer plant because it originated in Polynesia, and the British took it from Polynesia to the Caribbean, Africa, and that's how Breadfruit is all over the world.
Raphael Harry [01:10:48]:
Right? Awesome. Great story. Yeah, I never thought about Breadfruit being from Polynesia. I think I always thought it associated with Caribbean.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:11:01]:
Yeah, we do. And if you look at the plant, it is adjusted in shape based on where it resides. So it looks different in the Caribbean. It's evolved right, versus what it looks like in Polynesian cultures, but that's where it was originally taken from.
Raphael Harry [01:11:21]:
So you've been in podcasting for a few years now.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:11:26]:
Raphael Harry [01:11:27]:
What has been your greatest what do you consider your greatest accomplishment as the founder of Bread Fruit Media?
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:11:42]:
I would say the ability to help others create their own shows. I love that creative process. I love giving people that experience or partnering with people for that experience, that they could create something and they can make it amazing and beautiful and entertaining and informative. I really enjoy that process. So what I consider a success is if we start a new show and I'm able to let it be as successful or more successful than the podcast that I created in 2015, that is the benchmark. I'm not creating it to stifle anybody's success. If it's more successful than mine, that is the goal. And I'm very proud that all the shows that I've worked on, they are successful in their own lanes. And we've created different definitions for each host and what success looks like for them because they're obviously different people and their shows have different topics, and so the goals obviously have to be different, and so the success has to look different.
Raphael Harry [01:13:03]:
I love that you recognize each person's success has to be different and will be different. Yeah. I think that's something that needs to be said out loud and always needs to be recognized. Yeah. I think you're doing a great job.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:13:23]:
Raphael Harry [01:13:24]:
And you'll go farther with that. I got it in you. So in what ways I'm going to make this question is going to step up a little bit from Breadfruit Media. Since you're in the podcasting industry, in what ways have you seen the podcast industry change over the years and where do you see it going in the future?
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:13:52]:
Um, so if you had asked me this question 2021, I'd have an answer. The truth is, in the last couple of years, I've taken a step back from the industry ness of the podcast, and I've really just focused on the audience.
Raphael Harry [01:14:17]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:14:17]:
I think we spend a lot it is great that the industry is doing all of these new things with technology, but the industry still has not mastered how to reach audiences, new audiences. I decided to take a step back and focus on the people who listen to the podcast, because without the people who listen to the podcast, we don't have an industry, period. And I felt like I had spent a lot of time trying to be known in the industry or to know what's happening in the industry, losing sight of the most important people, which is the audience. The audience, and connecting with them and giving them what they want. And really, that is my priority. I still observe what's happening in the industry. I try to be aware of what's happening in terms of technology, but at the same time, my listeners, the audience that I want to reach, they don't care. Your audience doesn't care. I think it's great that the industry cares, but does it have a huge impact on the audience that you're trying to reach? And if the answer is no, then we got to focus on what gets the audience to listen and to tell other people to listen about the podcast. And I haven't cracked that code yet. The industry still hasn't cracked the code on monetization for smaller independent podcasters, which is important. 90% of this industry okay, let me be more conservative. 80% of this industry is independent podcasters. It's you and me who are just creating stuff. The rest is really small and they're like reflective of or regular society. You have the extremely rich, the very poor, and those in the middle. And we're looking at old models to monetize and it doesn't work. And we have to figure out a better way of compensating creators or educating advertisers. Advertisers are you doing based on volume or are you doing it based on the relationship the host has with the audience? Who are you trying to reach? Are you still saying 1000 downloads per episode is still the benchmark when you have a host that they're getting 300 downloads an episode? But that audience is so dialed in. I also understand that I'm speaking from maybe a place of privilege, because when I started podcasting, there wasn't all of this hoopla. When I started, I was top ten, top 20. I didn't know anything existed. Someone emailed me and said, you're on this list and your podcast is 20. Whatever. And so I can say that I've had the longevity on my side. But as more podcasters coming, the space and my audience has more options to listen, I can't sit on those laurels and say I'm fine. I have to figure out how to keep the audience engaged and want to come back to listen. And there's less focus on that. There's more focus on how we're going to advertise. The reality is that we are creating content for the platforms. The platforms aren't created to accommodate our content. We're creating content for them.
Raphael Harry [01:17:58]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:17:58]:
Yeah, right. And the more they get us to create, the more we get into this hamster wheel of creating. And we're thinking we'll get more downloads, we'll get more listen, and we're just working for the algorithm as opposed to working for the audience. And I had to take a step back. For one, I was just burnt out. I was burnt out. And also I just took the year back, we met through Corey, and I had to take the step back because he thought I was pod fading. I was like, no, I'm not pod fading. I'm like, I'm grieving. And at the time, and I wrote this on the blog, I had to do the bare minimum, like all the extraness the bare minimum was I needed to edit my clients episode and made sure that my podcast had its episode. And those are the things that I focused on and my audience. And so I've just been doing that. And in the process of doing that, regaining the creativity that I have and being excited about projects and figuring out, okay, how am I going to kick off this new project and then worry about the industry later. Because if I have a conversation with any of my listeners, they have no idea what this podcast industry is, nor do they care. They don't care. And I had to balance that and say, you know what, I have to push my energy to what the audience wants. Don't focus on what anyone else is doing. Figure out what I want to do that I'm excited about, that the audience is going to hear and be like, yes, this is what I want.
Raphael Harry [01:19:31]:
You know what? I think I needed to hear that. Thank you.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:19:34]:
Raphael Harry [01:19:35]:
Thank you. And, yeah, I also took a big break towards the end of last year. I was just like, after my 30 anniversary, I was just like, yeah, you know what? I would take a break and come back and a few people were worried.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:19:50]:
But it's important and people cannot take a break. And I wrote this also on the blog. Like, creative burnout is a thing.
Raphael Harry [01:20:01]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:20:01]:
It is a thing. Religious, I'm Christian, but almost every religion, there's a balance. There's harmony in work and rest. And if we're always working to get the most downloads, if we're always doing this, when do we have time to step back and say, you know what, Raphael? You and I, we need to do, like, a creative retreat where we just kick back and we just relax and say, all right, we're just enjoying and let the mind then take over and bring us to creative options or opportunities. We can't do that if we're constantly just driving the mind to just record and create and create and create. We need that balance of rest.
Raphael Harry [01:20:48]:
Exactly. We do. All right, I could talk to you all day. I have to start wrapping up before Walter kicks me out of here. So let's step away from your company and podcasting. So you've already touched on this earlier on, but we're going to come back to this again. So everybody who's been on this podcast is considered a dancer. If you say dance, dance. Will you stop recording and kick you out of the studio right now? So we need you to give us at least three artists that can keep you dancing for an hour. And we know, obviously, that you dance, so you can't even deny that.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:21:30]:
No, for sure. In high school, I was the dancer.
Raphael Harry [01:21:35]:
That's why we love you. When you give us at least three artists that can keep you dancing, you're going to give me a conundrum now because usually I try to make this a trick question. I can't even twist this anymore because how am I going to twist this? I know Zoo here is happy now because he's like, somebody finally got rough. Because every other person, I'm making this difficult for them. So I usually say, you can't give us the most popular artist, but I know you're still going to give us some names. I'm going to be like, that's still popular artist. But even though it's not a popular name, I'm like, but you already gave me reggae song Splash, so you know what? I won't make the rules tough for you anymore. It's all good. You're already on one of the favorites.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:22:28]:
My catalog is deep. All right. I have a whole history of I.
Raphael Harry [01:22:34]:
Was thinking of how to twist this, but I'm like, you know what? It's all good. It's all good. So, yes, at least give us at least three artists that can keep you dancing for an hour if you want to make it all Brooklyn, all Montego Bay. Whichever way, it's all good. You're good to go.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:22:51]:
All right, I'm going to give you categories. If it's present day ding dong.
Raphael Harry [01:22:59]:
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:23:00]:
If it's just dance all period. Anybody in that catalog? Beanie Bonesy, spragobenz, all of those guys. Even if it is not dance. All we got berris. We have Dennis Brown. Any art, I'll be dancing. If you're talking hip hop, we could go old school. We could do salt and peppa. I was listening to Biggie on the way through Brooklyn in the house. Yeah, we could do whatever. We could do house music. Let me think. You said specific. Let's see who we go and pick. We could go wide. We could go wide. So black Box CNC Music Factory They're old school. So I can still dance to those. We got range.
Raphael Harry [01:24:01]:
All right, that's enough collection right there. Yeah, you're a real one. All right. So you live in New York City. One thing this place is known for is good food. And you're also from Jamaica. Good food. So when it comes to cuisine, we need a go to meal. But we're going to make this question too. Break it into. So if I arrive in Montego Bay right now, what's the go to cuisine that I need to have? And then tell us your favorite go to cuisine in New York City.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:24:46]:
Boy, I don't know what to tell you. Montego Bay. It depends on what you want.
Raphael Harry [01:24:55]:
Oh, no, you gotta get you gotta give us one that, you know, it can't be like I vista Montego Bay without having this. Like like if I don't have this cuisine, it doesn't count. I've been to Montego Bay.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:25:08]:
What I like, they're very authentically MoBay, which is short for Montego Bay. So my favorite place is it's not a food. I don't know what you call these things, but it's like a cracker. It's baked. So they're really big biscuits, as we call them culturally. And it's from a bakery in Montego Bay called Regal. And we call them regal. So there are these big round biscuits. I love them. And you could try it. The other thing is I'm staying away from the traditional jerk chicken and all of those things, right? Because everyone's going to tell you to try them. If I wanted you to try something, there's nothing like Devon house ice cream in Jamaica. So I would say try that. It's just such amazing ice cream. And then you can't go wrong with seafood. Concept is really good. That's what I would say.
Raphael Harry [01:26:18]:
Okay, that might be tough for someone like me, but Kunk is fish.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:26:25]:
Well, seafood pescatarian.
Raphael Harry [01:26:27]:
Yeah, I'm from a Rivera tribe. Fish. We love a lot of fish, except me. It's like roasted fish, then.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:26:35]:
Yeah, I don't really eat fish, so we have something in common. I don't care for the fish.
Raphael Harry [01:26:39]:
That's why we're cool. That's for other people. You guys go eat concrete.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:26:44]:
Raphael Harry [01:26:45]:
All right. So can't thank you enough for coming on the podcast. Final question. What would you like to leave the audience with? It's a freestyle moment. All yours.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:26:58]:
Wow. Your life and experiences are not mistakes. They're opportunities to grow, mature, and they're also opportunities to help others. They're for you, but they're to help someone else grow and mature and learn. And we can spend a lot of time beating ourselves up for making a silly decision because then we end up in this place or that place or going through something. But those experiences are to sharpen us, shape us, and help others. That's it.
Raphael Harry [01:27:45]:
Beautiful. So as my people say, banner. And I was trying to remember how your people say thank you, too, but I forgot that one. Make it easy for me. Asante sana is a simpler one. I'm trying to remember. I forgot the Gambian one. So many people have taught me how to say thank you on this podcast. I keep forgetting each and every one of them. But Dankershen is my Mrs. Easy one too. But all to say thank you for coming on the show. Please let people know how they can reach out to you and how they can find your awesome podcast on your company's network.
Kerry-Ann Reid [01:28:26]:
So you could go to breadfruitmedia.com and breadfruit media, social media. My podcast, Carry On, Friends at Carry On-friends, and carryonfriends.com. That's typically where we are.
Raphael Harry [01:28:40]:
Yes, and please check them out. I've been enjoying them. There's great history I've been learning about the Caribbean, and wow. Just know that I've been updated. I've been updated and I've been upgraded. And please, for everyone listening, if you have any memory you want to share, don't forget you can go on White Labelamerican.com and hit the contact button. Hit the microphone. It's two minutes, so if you talk longer than two minutes, it cuts you. So you can leave as many messages as you want. Nice messages. If it's not nice, hey, you know what I'll do? I'll cut you off. So thank you for the privilege of your company. See you next week.
Thanks for listening to White Label American. If you enjoyed the show, please give a five-star review on your favorite podcast app. You can follow the show on all social media platforms. Visit the White Label American website for links, for donations, episodes, feedback, guests, match, and newsletter. Don't forget to download the free White Label American app on the Google Play store and Apple coming soon. Thank you for the privilege of your company.
Coach /Entrepreneur/ Founder / Teacher
Kerry-Ann is the Jamaican-born New York City-based founder of Breadfruit Media.
She’s been creating original Breadfruit Media podcasts for over eight years. In addition, she has worked with several clients to launch their podcasts providing end-to-end service from ideation, development, marketing, strategy, production, and sound engineering.
Outside of working with clients, Kerry-Ann is a teacher, she’s done multiple workshops at Podcast Movement since 2017. She’s a mentor leveraging her expertise and years of experience to give feedback and guidance to help podcasters develop and grow.