Verbally Effective Podcast

Verbally Effective Podcast

Verbally Effective with Ena Esco is a topical interview-style podcast that intersects art, culture, politics and entertainment. Each week Ena is joined by a featured artist, entertainer, elected official or professional with roots in Memphis. Verbally Effective delves into each guest’s personal journey to uncover the incredible stories fueling their purpose, the highs and lows of their pursuits, and how through their passion they are moving the culture forward.

Episodes

February 16, 2024 49 mins
Alfred Kainga is a talented acclaimed Zimbabwean-born comedian based in the United States, celebrated for his engaging stand-up comedy performances. He’s renowned for his distinctive storytelling style and humor, often delving into various facets of everyday life, cultural nuances, and societal observations.

Kainga has been celebrated for his remarkable talent in captivating audiences with his wit and charm. He often crafts comedic...
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I sit down with creator Delvin “DeshowMercy” Young on episode 281! His journey begins leaving Dallas, TX at a young age settling in Memphis with his grandmother. After graduating from Raleigh-Egypt High School, Delvin moved to Hollywood, CA and was discovered by a movie director. He began acting and modeling and later suffered a severe injury that changed the trajectory of his life. It was during this difficult time where he discov...
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Take a listen to this exclusive VE episode with comedians Cocoa Brown, Big Vino and Skeet Carter. We learn quite a bit about the challenges women face in the comedy industry including some of the expectations surrounding content. You'll notice that pay inequities are a huge part of this world as well. However, we ultimately shine light on the amazing brand and community that Cocoa Brown has built in the areas of comedy, acting and ...
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Westwood native Camille Leigh's photographic journey stands as a testament to her unwavering dedication and passion for her craft. Following her graduation from the University of Memphis in 2010, where she earned a degree in Spanish and Philosophy, she could have ventured into a teaching career. However, life had different plans for her.

Today, with an impressive eleven years of experience behind the lens, Camille has solidified her...
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North Memphis native Dr. Trenton M. Watson lives and breathes education as the Principal for Westwood High School. He's been in this particular role for the past 6 months and has made true connections with his students. On this episode, you'll learn about Dr. Watson's vast experience teaching within the Memphis Shelby County School system and how he thrives to increase the graduation rate and reduce absenteeism. Dr. Watson believes...
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November 13, 2023 30 mins
Ali Manning is a food scientist, author, and the CEO/Founder of Umami Food Consulting, LLC. She is the creator of Food Science 4 Kids, a program that teaches grade-school children food
science education and allows them to perform hands-on activities that enrich their daily lives. Ali is also the Program Consultant with Project Green Fork (a local restaurant sustainability program) within the Clean Memphis organization, which provide...
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October 23, 2023 37 mins
Michalyn Easter-Thomas with Memphis River Parks is curating work around Tom Lee Park's art installation by artist Theaster Gates titled "A Moment to Listening." For the opening, until the remainder of the year, she has gathered local creatives that includes Fenton Wright (The Big We), Jennifer McGrath (Orpheum Memphis) and Gabrielle Brooks (Urban Art Commission) to be guest curators in order to promote the activation of this artwor...
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Episode 275 is filled with Black Girl Magic as I sit down with Kimel Fryer and Kayla Myers of Indie Memphis. The 24th annual Indie Memphis Film Festival is happening October 24th-29th at Crosstown Theater, Circuit Playhouse, Hattiloo Theatre, Playhouse on the Square, Malco Studio on the Square, and online filled with a diverse lineup of films, shorts, documentaries and entertainment.

Kimel Fryer is a Memphis native who graduated wit...
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Memphis Mayor-Elect Paul Young stopped by the Verbally Effective Podcast today to share his thoughts on his new title, the cancellation of Beale Street Music Festival 2024 and crime in Memphis.
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Last year I had the opportunity to interview Memphis Mayor-Elect Paul Young twice on the Verbally Effective Podcast. The first sitting was prior to Young's announcement of running for Mayor and the second was months later after the declaration. I thought it would be fitting to run back the original episode which is filled with Paul's personality and some interesting facts about our new Mayor-Elect that you may not know. There's eve...
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Anasa Troutman is a cultural strategist, producer, writer, entrepreneur, and philanthropist. As CEO & Founder of The BIG We and BIG We Foundation, Anasa works to build & execute stories & strategies that are aligned with her vision world where all communities can experience safety, abundance, creativity, and joy.

Best known for her 20 year partnership as strategic advisor & executive producer for Grammy Award winning...
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Outreach Specialist Adrianne Vestal and Sigma Pi Phi Delta Boule Social Action Chairman Melvin Burgess stopped by the podcast to discuss the The Parity Project. Currently, the fraternity has an initiative to dismantle disparities locally and nationally through the Parity Project, a national call to action to achieve economic parity for Black America by 2030. The Parity Project focuses on moving the needle for Black representation i...
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September 11, 2023 36 mins
Kevin Whitted is a Player Development Coach, former NBA player, Greater Wilmington Sports Hall of Famer, and McDonald’s All-American. He is also the founder of Kevin Whitted Basketball Services (KWBS), a year-round player development curriculum-based training program that services youth, collegiate, and professional basketball players throughout the Mid-South region. Through KWBS, Kevin spends his time training others who are as se...
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Did you know that up to 40% of the food supply in the U.S. is wasted, and up to 21% of Tennessee landfills are made up of wasted food. Locally, restaurants are second only to households in their generation of food waste in Memphis. As a program of Clean Memphis, Project Green Fork (PGF) contributes to a more sustainable Mid-South by helping local restaurants reduce their environmental impact.

Ali Manning and Leann Edwards join me fo...
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South Memphis native Carol Coletta is president and CEO of the Memphis River Parks Partnership and named of the 100 most influential urban planning experts. She is leading the relaunch of a nonprofit to develop, manage and program six miles of riverfront and five park districts along the Mississippi River.

Carol has been living in downtown Memphis since 1977 and is extremely passionate about the city. After traveling the world, Car...
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North Memphis native Chef Eli Townsend sat down with Ena Esco for a live Verbally Effective podcast at the historic Cossitt Library in downtown Memphis last week. Chef Eli shared the intricate details of his upbringing including how his love for cooking began and opening a restraunt. Not only is Eli the owner of Dos Hermanos Cafe, he is also the President of the Downtown Neighborhood Association and currently Mr. MidSouth Pride. Ta...
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August 14, 2023 49 mins
From Aretha Franklin, Al Green and Isaac Hayes to Three 6 Mafia, 8Ball & MJG and Yo Gotti, Memphis has always been fertile soil for producing music superstars. Entering that arena with all the aspirations of a young Al Green is rising singer/songwriter and Memphis native, Kendrick P. Like so many before him, Kendrick P. began singing in his grandfather’s church, learning to play piano and drums along the way.

Today, Kendrick’s s...
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The annual Southern Heritage Classic Cultural Celebration is amongst us and I thought it would be fitting to have the founder, Fred Jones Jr. sit down with me for a live podcast at the historic Cossitt Library. Growing up in the Cleaborn Homes housing community in the Memphis area, Fred attended Booker T. Washington High School active in baseball, basketball, track and band. A severe football injury derailed his hopes of receiving...
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Kontji Anthony is the CEO and co-founder of Youdle. Before Kontji became a technologist, she was the main co-anchor at WMC-TV in Memphis where she worked for 17 years.

Kontji sits down with Ena Esco for a live podcast recording at the historic Cossitt Library. She shares that her goal is to scale the tech industry and make Memphis a destination for all things tech. With only 3% of AA in this industry, Kontji makes it her mission to...
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Take a listen to the live podcast with actor and social entrepreneur, Bertram Williams Jr. recorded live at Cossitt Library on June 29th. We discussed his passion for food justice coupled with his "Big Farma" persona that he's using as a tool to reach the youth. We also hit on the intricacies of the SAF/AFTRA writer's strike and how it has affected his work with P Valley. Esco's Pop Talk entered the discussion tackling topics such...
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