In a pit of depression, Ben Nemtin and his three best friends decided to create the world’s greatest bucket list to make them feel alive. They bought a rickety old bus and criss-crossed North America, achieving the unthinkable. And most importantly, every time they accomplished a dream, they helped a complete stranger cross something off their bucket list — this was the beginning of The Buried Life movement.
Ben Nemtin is now the #1 New York Times bestselling author of What Do You Want To Do Before You Die? and the star of the MTV show The Buried Life. As the co-founder of The Buried Life movement, Ben’s message of radical possibility has been featured by major media outlets including The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, and NBC News. An acclaimed keynote speaker, Nemtin has presented his '5 Steps to Make the Impossible Possible' to business conferences and corporate leadership teams around the world.
From playing basketball with President Obama to streaking a professional soccer field, from raising over $400,000 for charity to placing a record-breaking $250,000 bet on roulette—Ben’s bucket list quest has inspired millions to chase their dreams and realize that impossible is possible.
In this conversation, Branden and Ben dive deep into how to make the impossible possible and why humanity puts off the things we really want to do in our day-to-day lives.
From his humble beginnings in Bradenton, Florida, R&B singer and classical guitarist Reggie Williams Jr. never expected his side project R.LUM.R to blow up. Then the internet found him and his music took off with the release of his 2016 single "Frustrated" — racking up over 39 million streams on Spotify to date. He has also won fans with singles like "Be Honest," "Tell Me," and "Love Less." NPR Music labelled R.LUM.R a "fast-rising artist whose falsetto is no joke" and he has played at major festivals like Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza.
The heart behind R.LUM.R’s work is a desire to give back to music what he believes it gave to him — which was a place of belonging, refuge, and release ever since his complicated youth.
In this conversation, Branden and R.LUM.R fearlessly unpack the scars behind his successes and tell the truth about why empathy is the most powerful tool inside storytelling.
Mike Donehey is and singer, songwriter and guitarist primarily known for his work as lead singer in the Christian rock band Tenth Avenue North. What many people don’t know, is that Mike’s journey as a musician began after a near-fatal car accident where he was told he would never walk again. He then picked up a guitar during his days in the hospital and began to write music.
Now, the band has long been known for the depth and vulnerability of their songwriting since they released their acclaimed national debut, Over and Underneath, in 2008. Quickly winning fans’ allegiance with radio staples, the band was named the Gospel Music Association's New Artist of the Year in 2009. The group gained further momentum with 5 full-length records that spawned hits that have led to selling in excess of one million albums to date.
More importantly, Mike is willing to dive into controversy. Over the last several years, he’s used his platform to advocate for Black Lives Matter, fairer treatment of immigrants and refugees, and other social issues.
In this conversation, Branden and Mike dive deep into matters of faith, balancing your personal life while gaining fame, speaking truth to power in politics, as well as the importance of refusing to give up your humanity for the sake of a brand.
Benjamin Von Wong is a world-renowned photographer who decided to use his talents to make a difference. He never set out to be a photographer, and he became one almost by accident. Nevertheless, in the space of the past 5 years since he quit his day job as a mining engineer, he’s earned a worldwide reputation as a brilliantly original photographic artist, and was even named one of four winners of this year’s Imaging Alliance award for Visionary Photographers.
Benjamin now creates fantastical visual worlds through photography, virally promoting worthy causes, then posts them on his website so people can experience the creative process in a visceral way. Something he’s known for is creating work that looks hyper-realistic and photoshopped, but it’s based on capturing images of what is actually in front of his camera.
In this conversation, Branden and Benjamin dive deep into the importance of using your curiosity to make a positive impact in this world — and figuring out how to do that in a creative way that makes people care.
Is the process of creating art more about becoming a mirror for the creator or the observer? Fine art photographer, Brooke Shaden, has explored this question for the better portion of her life and found the nuanced answer inside her own powerful story.
As a self-portrait artist who emphasizes surrealism and imagination, Brooke has spent years becoming the characters of dreams inspired by a childhood of intense curiosity and fear. After studying films for years in college, she realized her love of storytelling was universal — and started writing as well as pouring into international travel.
Brooke’s additional love of motivational speaking, writing, and education led her to bring the Promoting Passion Convention to life — a series of hands-on workshops, lectures, and creative panel discussions dedicated to helping artists make a difference with their passion. She’s also responsible for starting The Light Space — a photography school for survivors of human trafficking in India and Thailand.
In this conversation, Branden and Brooke hash out the belief that the greatest gift an artist has is to promote passion and share your unique self.