Balance Check EP 001 w/ Alex Astbury (Trumpet Playing, Breathing, and Coffee)


So, I’ve just launched a radio show! While I have zero radio or presenting experience, and I wasn’t exactly sure of the format, I just knew that I had something. I pitched to the guys at Brum Radio and they said yes! To be honest the pitch involved me talking about my background in marketing fitness products for over 11 years. Since leaving that environment I’ve learned that we don’t need a gym membership - or sports supplements - to take care of our physical and mental health. I came up with the idea of hosting a show that would provoke a non-judgemental conversation about health.

After researching and writing down various show formats, my wife recommended a book she had read called Daily Rituals by Mason Currey. It’s all about the working routines of more than a hundred of the greatest philosophers, writers, composers and artists that have ever lived. This is where the idea for the show - Balance Check - came from. Life can be hectic, and we’re always reminded about how there isn’t enough time in the day.  I wanted to talk to people about their own daily rituals that help them find balance and peace.

I wanted my first show to be with someone I knew already, so I could break my radio presenting wings in as gently as possible. I first met Alex Astbury when I started working part-time in a coffee shop. I’d always wanted to open my own coffee shop and needed the experience. Even though I’m not looking to pursue this idea anymore, Alex became somewhat of a mentor to me. We ended up having a great chat on the show, and below is a link and my highlights from it. 

Show Highlights

Scooter - Commute 

I had to start off the conversation with Alex’s scooter, as I was pretty envious of it.

In a Financial Times article published late last year, it highlighted the growth in scooter sales. One rider who uses her scooter as part of her daily work commute says she finds it fun, it relieves stress and also saves her time and money.

Dialling In - Coffee 

Listening back to the show, I realised I did a really bad job on explaining what dialling in espresso actually is! So I thought it would be better to share a link to a Youtube video. 

Any good barista really values this process at the beginning of the shift. I’ve even read about some coffee shops that won’t open if the espresso isn’t tasting right. Below is a short, easy to follow video about the process of dialling in. Check it out; at the very least you’ll have something to talk about with your local barista. 

I really liked this part of the show as it was the starting point for us to discuss our daily habits.

Full Episode Here

Daniel Brathwaite