In this very special episode, Jordon interviews a number of people at the 40th Annual Compassionate Friends Conference in Orlando, FL.
Jordon follows up with a couple former podcast guests on their experiences at the national conference, Keith Singer (Episode 3) and Alan Pederson (Episode 14) as well as sits down for a more extended interview with Luci Abrahamson to talk about how much being a part of TCF, and a leader at the National Conferences has impacted her path towards healing herself and others.
This is part 1 of 2 Live From the Conference, and it's all leading up to the 50th Episode, which will be taped LIVE in front of an audience at Zinc Bar on August 27th!
Check out the event page on our FB page and get tickets now!
Use Promo Code RUSSELL when buying tickets, and they're FREE!
This episode was a long time coming! Jordon Sits down with comedian Michael Sommerville to talk about the journey he's been on since the death of his brother Paul in 1997. As a baby, Paul had to undergo brain surgery, the complications of which ultimately led to his death. Now, almost 20 years later Michael felt like it was time to talk about it.
We talk about the importance of following your own path, and the ways in which priorities shift after a significant loss. We also talk about how to appreciate the little things along the way.
Check out Michael online at
Also, be sure to check out his new webseries called How to (blank) a man!
In this episode, Jordon sits down with fellow podcaster and comedian Keith Price. Keith's mother suffered from alzheimer's disease as well as dementia later in her life, which ultimately took her life. Finally Keith would have the time to spend with his father and have the relationship that he always wanted with him. Except that his father died just 6 weeks later. Despite not having the time to really enjoy it, Keith did manage to make the most of his final days.
We talk about how important community is, and how having friends who let us be ourselves make the journey back into the light bearable. We also talk about how and why we laugh in tough moments, and how healing it can be to take a step back from the immediacy of a loss and point out the ridiculousness of the human experience.
Check out Keith's Podcast, KEITH PRICE'S CURTAIN CALL and revel in his love and experience with the NYC theater elite.
In this episode, Jordon talks to fellow comedian Geno Bisconte. 10 years after losing both his parents to cancer Geno reflects on how lucky and grateful he is to have had the upbringing he had, and the support system that continues to sustain him. We talk about how important it is to laugh at the darker sides of life, and how going through a loss of this kind of magnitude broadens the human experience, and actually makes you more complete.
To find out more about everything Geno, check out his website and follow ALL the Links!
In this episode, Jordon welcomes back to the podcast, Magician, Clown and all around Showman Nelson Lugo!
Nelson originally sat down with Jordon in episode 20 to discuss the issues surrounding the death of his father and his grandmother.
Now he's back after having put together a new one person show that ultimately ended u being more about his mother, much to his own surprise.
We also talk about the loss of the Big Apple Circus and Barnum And Bailey, and what will replace it as The Greatest Show On Earh. (could it be this show?!)
Find out more about what Nelson's been up to and when he's putting his show up again at http://nelsonlugo.com/
In this special episode, Jordon sits down with comedian and fellow podcaster Chris Calogero!
Chris' roomate Amy (also a comedian) committed suicide several years ago, which prompted him to start a podcast of his own, talking to other comedians about death, depression and loss. Jordon and Chris have a lot in common in the ways in which they have processed their grief, and are both making strides to start honest conversations about some of the heavier topics that crop up in life.
We talk a lot about just how healing it can be just to talk openly about issues related to grief and loss, and how gratifying it can be to actually create comedy out of the darkess.
Chris's Podcast is called "Mourning Coffee Podcast" and it can be found on iTunes HERE
In this episode, Jordon sits down with comedian Allan Fuks to talk about the death of his best friend Sam to suicide.
We talk about the difficultly of acceptance, both of who you are as a person, as well as the realities of life, and how the ever-evolving nature of these concepts impacts how we deal with trauma.
Allan has his own podcast called "The Week in Sex" - check out all the goings on here.
Follow Allan on Twitter here!
In this episode Jordon sits down with Comedian Julianna Meagher to talk about the death of her sister to cancer 4 years ago. We talk about how often we have to comfort others when they are faced with our truths, and how empowering it can often be to actually make others uncomfortable.
We also talk about the pressures of being the only sibling left, and how managing ones parents can be overwhelming on ones own.
Follow Julianna on Twitter @JuliannaMeagher
Chris Monty joins Jordon in the studio to talk about the loss of his mother, and about the ways in which he has managed to keep her in his life.
We talk about spirituality, and the line we walk between faith and WANTING to believe, as well as the real value of a dime.
As it happens, Chris' mother, along with both of her sisters were diagnosed with cancer, and survived their initial bouts, prompting them to create the Three Strohm Sisters Foundation, a non-profit that is dedicated to continuing the fight against cancer.
Learn more about the Three Strohm Sisters here!
Follow everything Chris Monty at his website, ChrisMontyLive.com
Christian Finnegan has lost both of his brothers - his younger brother to heart failure at the age of 19 in 2001, and his older brother to a heart attack at 36 in 2008. In this episode we talk about how one's role within a family change after the death, and how difficult it can be to maintain an identity that is tied to a life that no longer exists.
We also talk about how to remember the full person that died, and not just an idealized version of who they were.
Follow Christian on Twitter @ChristFinnegan
Check him out online at ChristianFinnegan.com
In this episode, Jordon sits down with Comedian Jen Mutascio, who lost her father to stomach cancer 17 years ago. In that time she's had to learn how to get along without her guiding force. We talk about how doing material about heavy topics have to be VERY funny if they are to be successful, and how honesty on stage is always unmistakable.
Follow Jen on Twitter @JenMutascio
In this episode Jordon sits down with Grammy nominated musician Stephan Crump, who recently released an album called Rhombal as a response to the loss of his brother to cancer.
We talk about the importance of the sibling relationship, and the twists and turns they often take, and the power of forgiveness when all is said and done. We also talk about how music can represent so many different things.
The music itself is quite moving, and the track at the end of this episode is Pulling Pillars (Outro for Patty), the song that we discuss in our interview.
From Stephan Crump on what the album is about:
"Rhombal is not about sadness. much more, its a commemoration of a death well-confronted, of a spiritual evolution i witnessed in my brother during our last days together, and of how close we left each other after what had been, for many years, a very troubled relationship."
Follow Stephan on Twitter @Crumbletones
To find out more about the album go to Stephan's website here!
You can purchase the album Here (on stephans website)
or HERE via iTunes.
In this episode, Jordon sits down with bartender Alissa Atkinson, whose brother James died three years ago in a freak motorcycle accident.
We talk about the difficulty of denial versus acceptance, what it means to have a vested interest in wanting to believe in otherworldly energies, and how to cope with stupid questions and/or comments that people make.
You can visit Alissa behind the bar at Precious Metal in Bushwick most nights,
Precious Metal is located at 143 Troutman St in brooklyn
Follow them on Twitter @PreciousMetalBar
Follow Alissa on Instagram @AlissaMayNot
In this episode, Jordon sits down with Author Robert Goor to talk about his recently published book, "Dear Andrew . . ."
Rob was an engineer in the robotics department of GE in 1988 when his 8 year old son Andrew was struck and killed by a truck right in front of him. In the ensuing aftermath, Rob struggled to maintain his relationship to Andrew, and began writing letters to him as a way of keeping his connection and allowing him a space to express his deepest emotions.
We talk about the importance of helping others can be, and about how impactful is is to share ones own story as a way of giving others hope.
Find out more about the book HERE
In this episode, Jordon sits down with author Dr. Meryl Ain, who, along with her husband and brother, have written a book called "The Living Memories Project; Legacies that Last." The book is a collection of personal stories from people from every walk of life, and many types of loss represented, describing the ways in which they honor their lost loved ones, and carry their spirits forward with them.
We talk about how important it is to continue our relationships with those we have lost, and especially how helpful and healing it can be to reach out and help others along in their own journeys towards acceptance and hope.
A Living Memories Project Journal has also been recently published to encourage you to find ways to tell your own story.
Purchase the book from AMAZON HERE
CLICK HERE to go to the Facebook Page.
Follow her on twitter @DrMerylAin
In this episode, Jordon sits down with comedian and actress Brandy Rowell!
Brandy lost her mother when she was 22 just after graduating college, and her father 7 years later, just as she was coming into her own as a performer and as a person.
We talk about the importance of community, and the need to connect with people who not just let you be yourself, but encourage the best of you to come out.
Eddie Brill is a comedian, actor and writer who has spent the better part of his life making people laugh. He is also no stranger to grief and loss. Eddie has lost a sister, a brother, his father and his step-father, as well as numerous friends and colleagues.
In addition to having spent 17 years as the warm up comedian (and eventually comedy talent coordinator) for the Late Show with David Letterman on CBS, he appeared on the 4th Annual Russell Ferber Foundation Comedy Fun!draiser, (I'm well aware that my families annual benefit show is not nearly on the same level as Letterman, but there are many fewer spots available.)
In this episode we talk about the accumulation of loss, and of love, and the notion that the show must go on.
In this episode, Jordon sits down with fellow Native NY’er, podcaster and comedian Chris Faga.
Chris’s mother died of a drug overdose when he was 16 years old, and his father died of a stroke only a few years later. We discuss how hard it is to lose your parents at such a young age, and how it can prepare you for other losses down the line.
We also talk about the death of his cousin Lisa, and how important it is to remember and share the funny stories of those who have passed.
Check out Chris’s podcast High Society Radio at http://newtrashcity.com/
Follow Chris on Twitter @HSRadioShow
Well, after a much needed break, I am back.
In this episode I explain myself and my absence, and hopefully also share a few stories you may relate or connect to.
Please "like" the FB page for the show and you'll always know whats going on!
In this episode Jordon sits down with his good friend Joey Richardson, a comedian and musician, who wrote the theme song for this podcast.
Joey's sister Lisa died of a brain tumor almost 10 years ago now, and he has since struggled to make sense of his artistic identity along with his personal identity.
Some of the things we discuss in this episode are survivors guilt, sibling rivalry, and the power of denial as a coping mechanism.
Check out Joey's web series Gustavo and Friends at http://www.gustavoandfriends.com/
Also check out his other video's at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClQ7P6BVLTH5CIEmaor_JhA
In this episode, Jordon turns the tables on Dr. Heidi Horsley, who has interviewed Jordon on both her Radio and TV shows several times.
Dr. Heidi Horsley is an internationally known grief expert, licensed psychologist, social worker and bereaved sibling. She co-hosts the award winning television series and radio show, Open to Hope. She is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University and in private practice in Manhattan. Dr. Heidi speaks throughout the country, on finding hope following trauma and tragedy.
Find out more about Heidi and all the good work she does at http://www.opentohope.com/
Follow her on twitter https://twitter.com/opentohope
In this episode, Jordon Sits down with Bill Williams, Bill an accomplished director, theater teacher/acting coach, leader of creativity workshops, freelance writer, and addiction advocate. Bill's son William died of a drug overdose on December 2nd, 2012, and since that time Bill and his wife have pledged to do all they can to raise awareness about the disease of addiction and help to erase the stigma of talking about it.
In addition, Bill was also one of MY theater teachers when i was in high school, so this was a very full-circle moment that I had interviewing him.
Read about what Bill is up to at http://billwilliamsblog.blogspot.com/
and Find out info about his "Where There's a Will" Fund at https://www.facebook.com/WhereTheresAWillFund
In this episode, Jordon sits down with author and sibling grief expert Elizabeth Devita Raeburn. Elizabeth was just 14 years old when her brother Ted died of aplastic anemia, a severe immune deficiency disorder. Many years later, Elizabeth wrote the book that she needed to read -The Empty Room: Surviving the Loss of a Brother or Sister at Any Age.
I have talked at length about Elizabeths book on several episodes of this podcast, and I recommend it to anyone who is dealing with sibling loss.
Her new book, The Death of Cancer is out now as well.
Check out her Amazon authors page to purchase either book!
Learn more about Elizabeth at http://www.devitaraeburn.com/
In this episode, Jordon talks with Comedian Ken Krantz, who recently lost his good friend Mandy to cancer. Ken reflects on his friendship with Amanda and her family, as he continues to process the loss after only finding out that she was sick days before her funeral.
We also discuss the power of doing truthful dark material, and how difficult it is even for those who are among the best at it.
Ken helped create a fund to help others with cancer afford their medical expenses, and he produced a comedy benefit show that he hopes to continue annually. Stay up to date by going to Take a Deep Breath and Laugh in Memory of Amanda B. Plawner
Follow Ken on Twitter @KidKrantz
Jordon and Harmony have been friends for nearly 10 years, having met at their local Compassionate Friends sibling group shortly after the death of Harmony's sister Hannah. Having just finished a recent run of her One-Woman-Musical "Afraid of Karma," Harmony reflects on the impact of doing the show, and what she's learned in the 10 years since her sisters death.
Find out more about her show at http://afraidofkarma.com/
Follow her on Twitter @HarmonyJupiter1