Overthought, A Podcast

Overthought is a compelling examination of the lives of classical singers Isaiah Bell and Chris Mayell, discussing performance psychology, creativity, entrepreneurship, life balance, self-doubt and the ways we overcome challenges to attain artistic triumph.
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Overthought, A Podcast



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Now displaying: April, 2016
Apr 26, 2016

030 show notes

The competitive spirit is pervasive and thinly veiled - even encouraged - in the world of music. (Is it that bad in fields outside the arts? We have only thi uninformed assumption to offer: Probably.) It's possible that an attitude of oneupmanship - and the over-awareness of one's own merits and faults that goes along with it - can have positive effects on the lives and careers of people that are NOT us. But we can't help but notice how much energy it sucks away from the creative headspace to always be trying to stay ahead of the next guy. (If we weren't quite so susceptible to this grubby little impulse, would we be better equipped to employ a healthy dash of competition to our advantage?) Chris also takes the opportunity to raise a soul-plumbing question - "Who ARE the Joneses?" - and Isaiah opens and closes the episode with a recitation of classic haiku. Never a dull moment....

-=- Show notes -=-

Book - The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho, Buson, & Issa (Essential Poets)

Website - Merriam-Webster - Defintion of 'quicklier'

Website - I Love You

Website - The Useless Web

Website -

Website -

Book - City of Darkness, by Ian Lambot

'Photos' - xkcd comics

Kirsten Dunst Selfie Short Film Called Aspirational by Matthew Frost

Featured Music: Sousa - with_pleasure (dance hilarious) - United States Marine Band, via MusOpen

Featured Image: 'I'll carry mine...', photo by Ann Rosener - Library of Congress Digital Images

© Copyright 2016, Isaiah Bell & Chris Mayell • All Rights Reserved

Apr 19, 2016

Perfectionism: necessary condition for high-quality output, or pathological and counterproductive compulsion? FIND OUT HERE! Chris and Isaiah, two accredited perfectionists, would like to set the record straight. Where does perfectionism come from? It's certainly responsible for endless general dissatisfaction - and the abandonment of many worthwhile endeavours - but is it a valuable tool, or is it more trouble than it's worth? Can it be harnessed? Amid legitimately topical tales of craft projects gone wild, we also take our first Overthought-coined acronym out for a test spin. What could OUTBREED possibly mean? Find out heeeeeeere.....

-=- Show notes -=-
Colt Express, Board Game | BoardGameGeek

Tutorial for Wood Prints - YouTube

Aidan Ferguson, mezzo-soprano

According to the dictionary, “literally” now also means “figuratively”, by Dana Coleman

Hamilton - Official Broadway Site

Vivien Shotwell, Author of Vienna Nocturne, Soprano

SciShow - Why Do We Have Butt Hair?

Treats and Snoozin

SciShow - Aphids: Weird Poop, Weirder Babies

Image of Isaiah's Tree Angel, named Cecilia

Image of another of Isaiah's Tree Angels

Apr 12, 2016

Ever the contrarians, Chris and Isaiah turn from debunking the myth of Success to looking for the bright side of Failure. Everyone knows we're supposed to see our missteps as growth opportunities, but it's hard to embrace failure when it just feels so god-damned bad. Would it be easier if we could learn to excise the idea of failure from our emotional vocabulary entirely? Or is it the worst kind of academic nonsense to even suggest that, since failure - and our reactions to it - seems to be such an essential part of the human experience? Sigh. To test their theories, the fellas dredge up memories of Real-Life Times when things did not go so well, and Isaiah repeatedly demonstrates his fear of failing in even the tiniest ways as he squanders valuable listener time searching for Exactly The Right Word (when an imperfect synonym would do just fine).

-=- Show notes -=-

The City of Regina

'Rory McIlroy’s U.S. Open win : The art of an epic comeback', by Jena McGregor | The Washington Post

YouTube - 'Failing - A very difficult piece for solo string bass' composed by Tom Johnson, played by Corey Schutzer

'Why Am I Obsessed With a Cellphone Game About Collecting Cats?', by Ryan Bradley | The New York Time Magazine

'A Dog’s Purpose According To A 6 Year Old'

Music: Sousa - with_pleasure (dance hilarious) - United States Marine Band, via MusOpen

Featured Image Copyright info:
Stickman courtesy of -
Background vector Designed by Freepik, courtesy of -

© Copyright 2016, Isaiah Bell & Chris Mayell

Apr 5, 2016

Success. Does the very word make you feel a little itchy? Certain tenors among us manage to project disdain for our rampant success-at-all-costs culture while still remaining vulnerable to its fundamental mantra: where you are is not good enough. Success means different things to each of us - and it's rarely something we can measure objectively. More often, it's an state of being, or a way of feeling, that we imagine will accompany our achievements in the future.

The tantalizing effect of the success-carrot luring us on can be that we are unable to ever truly metabolize successes we've already achieved. Instead, we continuously chase the phantom destination of success, certain that some out-of-reach goal will finally quench our thirst for more.

BONUS OFFER for our more success-hungry listeners: a REAL Cadbury Egg, sent through the mail, will reward the intrepid wordsmith who crafts a compelling compountmanteau (portmanteau of compound and portmanteau that I just made up) out of "Success" and "Sexsomnia", the topic of this week's Accident Moment of Awareness™.