Taboo & B.Earl Talk Werewolf By Night
For episode 146, we really blew the top off! We have been doing this show now for 7 years. Granted, there have been extended hiatus' during that time, but on and off we have been going since 2013. In that time, we have had the insane fortune of interviewing some of the most honest and interesting real-world people and listeners about their most intimate and personal experiences. In addition, we have also had access to some wonderful celebrity guests. Part of that is because of our location, being a recording studio in Los Angeles, and part of it is the pure power of word of mouth and community.
There is no way to candy-coat the pure excitement about landing this week's guests, Taboo from the Black Eyed Peas, and his writing partner B.Earl. It's not everyday you find out that an artist who's music was a pivotal part of your early adult life is going to be "zooming" into your make-shift garage podcast studio (thanks alot Covid!). Here is how it happened.
This is Benjamin Jackendoff, otherwise known as B.Earl. Ben has been active in Hollywood since 2002. He started as a Production Assistant on such films as XXX and Michael Bay's The Island. From there, he graduated up to film editor and executive producer.
Fast forward to 2017 when Ben joined seven-time Grammy winning artist Will.I.Am to co-write the Black Eyed Peas' first graphic novel, Empire of the Sun. The book was groundbreaking and incorporated elements not previously seen in the comic book industry. These included a new album inspired by the book, the first Black Eyed Peas album in eight years in fact. In addition to the album and the comic, the group also released augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) companion applications. The AR app scans the pages and adds special effects and full cast reading to the experience. The cast included an a-list group of supporters such as Stan Lee, Jaden Smith, Jamie Foxx, Charlamagne Tha God, Queen Latifah, Common, Mary J Blige, Rosario Dawson, Ice-T. Snoop Dogg and more.
From here, Ben would go on to write alongside his future business partner Taboo, content for Marvel's special issue 1000 with a focus on the Native American hero, Red Wolf. After the success of the book, Marvel approached the writing team to relaunch their long dormant comic book series Werewolf by Night. Adapting the penname B.Earl, Ben went on to pen a four issue mini-series with Taboo that launched in October 2020.
So, now that you are all caught up on B.Earl, here is how we were able to be honored with the pair as guests on the show. Our friends at our favorite comic book shop in Los Angeles, We Can Be Heroes Comics, were excited about the release of the Werewolf by Night book and recommended to us to add the title to our pull list, so we did of course.
After getting our hands on the first issue, we were hooked. Our show host, Infamous, reached out to B.Earl via Instagram and shared his praise for the comic. B.Earl and Infamous would go on to continue the Instagram chat until the wee early midnight hours of the next morning and thus the relationship was born. Infamous invited B.Earl to the first ever Barter Town toy fair at We Can Be Heroes Comics in Chatsworth, CA and the two would meet face to face. B.Earl was kind enough to sign copies of the first issue of the series, and even shared that the penname was so new to him that he hadn't even fully locked down his new autograph for it.
B.Earl expressed interest in appearing as a guest on the show after Infamous brought it up and volunteered that Taboo join the episode. Obvious overwhelmingly excited at the offer, Infamous instantly accepted. Taboo, being out of the country at the time recording new music, agreed to appear when he returned to the states in early November.
The stage was set and the show executed it's first ever zoom interview. Up until this point we had only done interviews via phone. But when a Black Eyed Pea tells you he wants to do it via zoom, you get it done.
Ironically, we experienced technical difficulties in the beginning but were quickly able to get past them and Taboo kicked the interview off right away with an incredibly humbling compliment toward Infamous and the show and the way we have championed mental health.
During the interview, both Taboo and B.Earl shared some personal stories about their struggles with PTSD and Taboo's battle with cancer. The pair then went onto to share their deep passion for the new series and their "why" about getting behind it. With a desire to champion new voice for Native-American artists, writers and readers, it was their desire to bring these strong characters to the forefront of this exciting new story.
In addition to this new limited series, we also learned that Taboo and B.Earl will be included in the upcoming Marvel Indigenous Voices book that united Native-American artists to tell an entirely new kind of story.
The interview with Taboo and B.Earl can be heard now on Episode 146 of The Infamous Chronicles wherever your stream your favorite podcasts or right here - https://open.spotify.com/episode/1FC7k4wbMBaAbt85rhjLHN