Memories are fickle things. Often when you strive to recollect something important to you, it slips away like mist, only for a random sight or sound to call it back to the front of your mind in perfect clarity.
Promenade, a multi-sensory podcast coming out this week, is a collection of sixteen stories from around the world dealing with the triggering of memories, and the stores that come with them.
From the sound of the sea reminding you of an old romance, the smell of a perfume in Paris making you yearn for home or a bar of soap reminding you of a loved one – memories can be triggered by the oddest of things.
Within Promenade, Writers, comedians, poets and songwriters from all around the world explore those moments where a song, smell or noise can bring you back to a moment in time.
This project was created by Andy Gaffney, who founded The Shift Podcast Network and hosts the shows Sound In Space and Be Grand, inspired by his days walking and running on the Prom in Salthill during lockdown.
Talking on how Promenade came about, Andy said “When making my other podcast Be Grand, a show about what made a person who they are today, I loved how just listening to someone’s story could bring you to places you didn’t expect to hear and that the person might not have expected to tell you.”
“With Promenade I thought it would be interesting if you focused more on that – removed the interviewer all together and just had one voice and the story they wanted to tell.”
Though he began turning the idea over in his head two years ago, it was only during lockdown that the project really began to take shape, as Andy fulfilled the promise so many of us made and broke to our ourselves, that we would use the time in lockdown to do something creative and fulfilling.
“I know for myself it meant a lot of days working on this and running on the promenade in Salthill in Galway.”
The podcast was was born “from both love and curiosity of nostalgia and a love of hearing a person’s story,” he explained.
He says that there is nothing more “personal and unique” to a person than their memories, and the stories that live in them.
“Even a shared memory can feel completely different from person to person, as for one it could have been just a normal rainy Tuesday, but for another it could have been the day they passed someone on the street for the first time, or got some news from home.”
“The more powerful the memory can mean then the more long-lasting the trigger years and years from now,” says Andy.
“Memories and the stories they trigger can be actual real life time travel.”
Promenade is available from November 2nd on all podcast platforms including your main two Apple Podcasts and Spotify and also on www.theshift.ie.
1 – When Shivvy Hickey hears the sound of the sea it always reminds of her of a lost love and what could of been.
2- Laura Carland on how The Strokes album “Is This It” makes her remember a rock and roll moment and an easier time.
3 – David Hawkins on how passing by swimming pools makes her remember a particular day where he got to win.
4 – Liset Alea searches for a perfume on the streets of Paris to remind her of home.
5 – Laura Blaise McDowell on how tin whistles remind her of an act of childhood rebellion.
6 – Rab Fulton walks through the woods of Galway and remembers a time where he and uncle went looking for dinosaurs.
7 – Dave and Cathy Cullen on the very special power of Hobnobs.
8 – Poet Dani Gill speaks about the connection between Imperial Leather soap and memories of her grandmother.
9 – When Andy Gaffney hears the fox fanfare, 30 years of memories fly past – the happy, the sad and the Star Wars.
10 – Zainab Boladale on the power of petrichor and the differences between the smell of the rain in Ireland and Africa.
11 – When Lauren Lindsey White hears the theme from Wizard of Oz it takes her back to her not so starring role as the tornado in her school play
12 – The album ‘See This Through and Leave’ by the Cooper Temple Clause is the soundtrack for Ruairi Hickson and his battle with a rare eye condition.
13 – Whenever Lynn Ruth Miller hears a dog barking she can’t help but think of the lessons she’s learned throughout her life
14 – A gas heater in Berlin prompts Daniella Reinking to think back on an early family holiday.
15 – Aoife O’Connor’s childhood was soundtracked by her parent’s mixtapes, now those playlists remind her of someone very special.
16 – Slow Skies ‘A Place in Time’ – the final track on Promenade is the song A Place in Time by the band Slow Skies written by Karen Sheridan.