Audio Talks

In the Audio Talks podcast, formerly known as Audio Matters, presented by HARMAN including JBL, Harman Kardon and AKG, host Oisin Lunny, music journalist and audio enthusiast, will interview expert guests, legends of the music industry and audio scientists to discuss the power of music and audio in all its facets. 

Season Two

#14: Sonic Branding – The Secrets Behind A Unique Sound DNA

It was such an honour to speak to Suzanne Ciani, 5x Grammy nominated composer and creator of the legendary Coca-Cola ‘Pop & Pour’ sound & Marijn Roozemond, Strategy Director at MassiveMusic.

In this episode of Audio Talks we explored the concept of sound DNA and sonic logos, and why good sound design for brands is becoming more important than ever.

Learn why new voice interfaces are leading to a new relationship with audio for our post-pandemic age, and find out how a unique sound logo of a product is designed, and its important role in brand recognition.


#13: When You Can Feel Music

Welcome to a brand-new season of HARMAN’s podcast, Audio Talks. After an exciting and successful first season, we’re back with a whole new line-up of fresh and fascinating content. Join host Oisin Lunny and a constantly changing panel of expert guests, music industry legends, and other sonic superstars as they explore the wide world of audio from every angle and offer a glimpse of what the future of audio may hold.

To kick off the new season, Oisin welcomes Mirek Stiles, Head of Audio Products at Abbey Road Studios, and Founder of the Abbey Road Spatial Audio Forum, Dr. Rafael Kassier, Senior Principal Engineer of Experiential R&D at HARMAN, and Muki Kulhan, In-Demand CIO.

What does immersive audio mean? How is it achieved? How has it evolved over time and where is it headed? How are immersive 3D experiences being shaped by current events such as the COVID-19 pandemic and how can immersive audio help connect people to the live music experience, even when they can’t physically be there?


Season One

  1. The Art of Active Listening
  2. Experience Economy on Wheels
  3. Discover the magic behind the unique sound of the John F. Kennedy Center
  4. Get cozy with your audio thanks to HiFi-Hygge
  5. Meet the Master Chefs Behind Exquisite Car Audio
  6. LA Confidential: The Producers
  7. Make Music Day: Let’s Talk Music Education
  8. Mega Rigs for Legendary Gigs
  9. SoundGirls: Women Who Rock
  10. Gaming Never Sounded So Good
  11. A Movie For The Ears: BMW’s Hypnopolis
  12. Music And The City: A Love Story

#12: Music And The City: A Love Story

In the final episode of Season One, we discuss the cultural heartbeat of a city and explore the importance of small independent performance venues for music, performing arts  and artists and how a local creative scene is a strategic factor to deliver economic, social and cultural growth in communities – topics that are especially close to our heart at HARMAN.

Together with our guests Rev. Moose, Executive Director/Co-Founder of NIVA (National Independent Venue Association) and Managing Partner/Co-Founder at Marauder, and Shain Shapiro, Founder & Group CEO at Sound Diplomacy, Oisin Lunny will examine the current state of music in cities, how it can regenerate post COVID-19, and what the future will hold.


#11: A Movie For The Ears: BMW’s Hypnopolis

This week, Greg Sikora, Director, Acoustic Systems Engineering at HARMAN, Cora Güntert, Digital Audio and Voice Strategy at BMW and Nicholas Nowottny, Executive Music Producer at Whitehorse Music, join us to talk about the art of audio storytelling and to dive into the world of Hypnopolis, BMW’s thrilling new sci-fi podcast. In addition, we will discover why the car is the ideal stage to enjoy not only music but also a good audiobook.

What is Hypnopolis and what makes it a movie for the ears? How important is sound design to create an audio story that captivates? Why are audiobooks the ideal companion for driving and how is a car audio system best tuned for spoken word content?

We’ll answer all of these questions and a whole lot more in this episode of Audio Matters.


#10: Gaming Never Sounded So Good

This week, Damon Johnson, Global Category Director for Headphones at HARMAN, and Alfredo Fernandez Franco, Director of Immersive Audio at HARMAN, join us to talk about the importance of sound in today’s video games, with a fascinating look at the science and technology behind the development of new headsets for this wildly popular category.

Why is gaming audio such a big deal in 2020? How does sound quality affect the gaming experience? What exactly is the “Fortnite Effect”? How is HARMAN shaking up the market and setting a new benchmark with its JBL Quantum headset range giving customers the ultimate advantage in gaming through immersive sound.

We’ll answer all of these questions and a whole lot more in this episode of Audio Matters. 


#9: SoundGirls: Women Who Rock

This week, we welcome four special guests of ‘SoundGirls’, an organization that strives to inspire and empower the next generation of women in audio:  Karrie Keyes, executive director and co-founder of Sound Girls, Jeri Palumbo, executive producer and A-list sporting event engineer, Leslie Ann Jones, engineer, sound mixer, and director of music at Skywalker Sound, and Michelle Sabolchick Pettinato, concert sound engineer and founder of Mixing Music Live. Together, they discuss their professions and how they’re inspiring the next generation of women in audio.

A few of the topics we’ll cover include how these gutsy women got to where they are, what they love about their jobs, and what specific professional challenges they’ve faced.

What’s the story and vision behind SoundGirls? What is their advice to women looking to break into the industry?  We’ll provide answers to all of these questions and many more in this episode of Audio Matters. Available below as well as on Podigee and all major podcast platforms including Apple PodcastsiHeartRadioSpotifyTuneIn, and Deezer.


#8: Mega Rigs for Legendary Gigs

This week, Bill Hanley, Woodstock sound engineer and “the father of festival sound”, Brad Divens, rock musician and front-of-house engineer for big-name bands like Garbage, Mötley Crüe and Enrique Iglesias, and Raul Gonzalez from Harman’s Professional Audio Division, join us to talk about the mega rig sound systems that power world’s largest gigs and music festivals.

A few of the topics we’ll cover include pivotal moments in modern live music history with a special look at Woodstock, the creative process behind setting up a sound system for a live performance, and the role of technology in the evolution of captivating tour sound. What’s the difference between early-day ground stack systems and a modern line array set-up? What are footlight monitors and how were they developed? Is live sound just a question of mixing, or is there more to it?


#7: Make Music Day: Let’s Talk Music Education

Make Music Day

This week, we’ve organized a special episode to celebrate International Make Music Day, which is held every year on June 21. Joining the discussion are two of the leaders behind Make Music Day, Aaron Friedman, President of the Make Music Alliance, and Dr. Lee Whitmore, Executive Director for the GRAMMY® Music Education Coalition

What exactly is Make Music Day, and where did it come from? How did it begin? In what ways will social distancing measures affect this year’s festivities? How is the GRAMMY® Music Education Coalition improving access to music for young and disadvantaged people? How is HARMAN inspiring young people through contemporary music education? Who are the musicians contributing to Make Music Day this year, and how can you get involved?

We’ll provide answers to all of these questions and moreover reveal exclusive insights from our latest study on the Power of Music and how it benefits people’s lives.


#6: LA Confidential: The Producers

This week, “LA Confidential: The Producers” invites you into the homes of audio legends Lenise Bent, Platinum award-winning producer, engineer and post production master, C.J. Vanston, movie composer, record producer and keyboardist and Neal Pogue, multi-platinum and 2-time Grammy-award winning producer and mixer. You’ll hear snippets about their lives and careers, and how they equip their homes and studios with the world’s greatest audio gear.

How did these brilliant audio professionals get into the music business? What have been the twists and turns of their career paths? What is it like working with some of the top artists on the planet? What do they love the most about the work they do, and what do they think is in store for the world of music and audio?


#5: Meet the Master Chefs Behind Exquisite Car Audio

This week, listen to expert trio Greg Sikora, Director and Head of Acoustic Systems Engineering at HARMAN, Stefan Varga, Senior Acoustic Engineer at HARMAN, and Dr. Amy Belfi, Assistant Professor in Psychological Science at Missouri University of Science and Technology as they take a closer look at what it takes to create truly exquisite sound in the car.

As the world slowly transitions out of lockdown, many people are rediscovering the sheer joy of listening to great music on the road.  What is the link between music and driving? How can it make people have more fun in the car? And why can’t technology replace the human ear in fine-tuning car audio systems?


#4: Get cozy with your audio thanks to HiFi-Hygge

Audio Matters Podcast 4 - Hi-Fi Hygge

Welcome to episode #4 of HARMAN’s new weekly podcast, Audio Matters, dedicated to all things audio. Every week, Audio Matters gathers together a diverse group of audio experts who join host Oisin Lunny to provide fun, informative, timely information on a variety of music and audio topics for listeners around the world.

This week’s episode explores the audio dimension of Hygge, the Scandinavian notion of coziness, conviviality, and simple joys. Snuggle up to your loudspeakers as guests Chris Dragon, Senior Director of Marketing for Lifestyle at HARMAN, Jim Garrett, Senior Director of Product Strategy and Planning for the Luxury Audio Business Unit at HARMAN, and Ingrid Opstad, freelance journalist, graphic designer, and founder of the very popular interior, design, and lifestyle blog That Scandinavian Feeling discuss the fine art of HiFi-Hygge.

In the wake of lockdown, how have our listening habits changed, and how can music help to heal the painful sense of solitude that social distancing has caused? How can you boost your home’s cozy quotient with HiFi-Hygge? How have HiFi systems and loudspeaker designs evolved? Find out all this and much more in this week’s episode of Audio Matters, available below, on Podigee and and all major podcast platforms including Apple PodcastsiHeartRadioSpotify, and Deezer.


#3: Discover the magic behind the unique sound of the John F. Kennedy Center

Discover the magic behind the unique sound of the John F. Kennedy Center

Welcome to episode #3 of HARMAN’s weekly podcast, Audio Matters, dedicated to all things audio. Each week, Audio Matters brings together a new group of audio experts to join host Oisin Lunny in offering listeners fun, informative, timely information on a variety of topics such as active listening or user-centric listening experiences inside the car.

This week’s episode will take you behind the scenes of the world-famous John F. Kennedy Center as John M. Burke, Head of AV System Design & Build at the Kennedy Center, and Raul Gonzalez, Senior Applications Engineer for Performance Audio at HARMAN, offer you a special look at the state-of-the-art technology responsible for the center’s exceptional audio capabilities.

What are the secrets to the phenomenal success of the audio design at the Kennedy Center? How do audio engineers make sure that every seat provides the best possible sound? What makes the Kennedy Center sacred ground for the performing arts? Learn all of this and much more in this week’s episode of Audio Matters, available below, on Podigee and all major podcast platforms including Apple PodcastsSpotifyiHeartRadio and Deezer.


#2: Experience Economy on Wheels

Welcome to episode #2 of HARMAN’s new weekly podcast, Audio Matters. Dedicated to all things audio, Audio Matters brings together a diverse line-up of audio experts alongside host Oisin Lunny to deliver fun, informative, timely information on a variety of topics ranging from how to hone your listening skills to how to set up your audio equipment to what to expect from the future of audio.

After last week’s inaugural episode on active listening, this week’s episode takes you inside the car of the future with Bill Wyman, HARMAN’s VP Global Marketing Car Audio, Chris Ludwig, VP Epic Experience Team, and Riley Winton, UX Concept Manager at HARMAN, as they explore user-centric audio experiences in the automobile.

As lockdown measures begin to recede, how will the listening habits that people have developed over the past few weeks and months transfer to the in-car environment? What is the meaning of Experience Per Mile and how is it changing the way people buy and use cars? What will the in-car audio experience of the future look like?


#1: The Art of Active Listening

Audio Matters Podcast

In the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic and the drastic changes in social interaction that it has caused, who among us has not felt the desire to reach out, to engage, to reconnect? At HARMAN, one of our most dearly-held beliefs is that music empowers people to improve their mood and their lives, no matter where they are. And as millions of men, women, and children in every corner of the globe struggle with a heavy sense of disconnectedness, there has never been a better moment to do what we do best: bring people together through the power of music.

With that in mind, we are proud to introduce our new podcast series, Audio Matters, devoted to a tradition that is a defining characteristic of human beings: listening to and creating music. Hosted by Oisin Lunny, professional music journalist, presenter and broadcaster, Audio Matters will share interesting, entertaining and informative content covering a wide variety of audio-related topics every week, with esteemed expert guests, legends of the music industry and audio scientists to help make listeners feel engaged, entertained, and connected.

In the inaugural episode of Audio Matters, we explore the art of “active listening,” with fascinating input from Dr. Sean Olive, Senior Fellow, Acoustic Research at HARMAN and past President of the Audio Engineering Society, Director of York Music Psychology Group Dr. Hauke Egermann, and 7x Grammy-winning music producer Frank Filipetti.

What exactly is active listening? How does it work? What impact can music have on the mind and on the body? What is the role of the quality and position of home audio equipment in achieving the benefits of deep listening? Can music help you feel happier right now?


Audio Matters Playlist

Check out the fabulously diverse Audio Matters Playlist on TIDAL, chosen by our VIP guests every week, with a few selections from myself as well 🙂


The Art Of Listening

Check out the Art of Listening Documentary.

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