Flying Machine started small, and in some way will always be small. In the summer of 2016, I reached out to a few rookie podcasts I knew and found we had enough in common to form our first network- Comrade Radio. It was a learning process- we made a few bad crossovers, lost shows, gained new ones, and tread digital water for a while. The whole time we weren’t making it big we were working behind the scenes at building incredible friendships, learning everyone’s strengths, phobias, and inside jokes, and slowly crafting a common direction. Eventually, we all began to sense a change. We were getting serious about this, and we were getting good at it. Our Facebook group posts were fun and creative, our musical jingles and artwork were at a competitive level, and we had learned what made us stand out. It was that exact small feeling that seemed like a negative at first, or something to grow out of, that now felt fully comfortable. The hosts were best friends. The small group of fans felt like family and kept coming back. We truly felt that that closeness and community was a strength that you don’t see anywhere else in podcasting.

So we took flight, renamed, and relaunched. Into what? How should I describe it now? I can usually mumble through it in conversation, but I haven’t had to type it in a statement yet. So with the clock ticking I guess I’d say we’re a podcast network. And we’re also a production company. See, while I was just putting some fun shows together to make a chain of connections, I had accidentally assembled some creative heavy hitters, and they accidentally all got good at the same time. So while everyone’s individual shows will be regularly making the same great material, we’re going to be branching out and making even more audio essays, blogs, short stories, poems, radio plays, music, and whatever else excites us going forward. I’d say I hope you join us for the ride, but I’m committing to making such great, compelling, silly material that you can’t help but enjoy it. Since somehow this backstory just became a mission statement, and again, with seconds on the clock, I’ll sum it up like this. We pledge to stay great friends with each other, and to stay in touch with you, for as long as the volume of listeners makes it possible. As we grow and get better, we’ll stay small in that basic way- that we’re always hearing suggestions and making the programs that the people in front of us want to hear, not chasing a bigger popular thing for raw numbers. We’re going to sound like a professional studio, and write like a magazine, but still feel like a closet or a kitchen table in some way.

So thank you for being here and listening. Thanks for playing along in our Facebook threads, or just watching if you prefer. If you can afford it and think it’s worth it to you, thanks for donating to us. It all genuinely, really helps. Let’s see what comes next.

-Malcolm Nygard, founder May 2018

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