“I choose to believe that every person has a story worth telling, and worth telling beautifully.” – Luke Brawner
Luke Brawner started podcasting in 2015 with two faith based programs, Sons and Doubters and Hymnistry. The DFW native who once envisioned ministry as his life calling had no idea, then, that podcasting would soon become the most important part of his life.
That same year, Luke started (in an unofficial capacity) his network, Milieu Media Group. The official company was formed in 2017, and today produces 8 podcasts with 4 more in development.
Of its 8 currently running shows, none has garnered more local traction than longform interview show, The H. The show is a story telling concept that focuses on individuals, both famous and ordinary, who make Houston the diverse, unique, and talent-rich metropolis that it is.
The goal of The H is twofold. As Brawner puts it, “storytelling has the potential to change the world. Done well, we can affirm the humanity of others and truly feel connected to one another.” While spotlighting the unique and diverse personalities that make Houston great is the show’s immediate mission, Brawner’s broader initiative is to present, through storytelling, universal human truths; to provoke some level of common understanding between his guests and his listeners.
Guests from the show’s 1st and 2nd seasons have included George Foreman IV (son of the legendary boxer), Houston Chronicle sports reporter Hunter Atkins, local Scotch Whisky expert Elyse Blechman, and Vietnam War surgeon Dr. Sam Axelrad, among dozens of others.
Integral to the success of the show is the incredible diversity of its guests. Something done very much intentionally as a reflection of the city itself. The H is a show that hopes to present a genuine contemporary view of Houston and it’s unmatched ethnic, racial, sexual, and political diversity.
The show is set to enter it’s third, and most ambitious season yet, in early October. Brawner will be introducing a roster of more well known guests — including Houston sports personalities, musicians, and politicians — but will also remain committed to his goal of spotlighting ordinary Houstonians with their own beautiful stories to tell.
The third season will also include more segments and bonus episodes, and will introduce a dedicated The H blog (featuring input from a certain handsome boy who’s blog you’re already reading). The additional content will serve to further cover the show’s third season guests as well as to provide independent content and stories not featured in the podcast.
In addition to The H‘s goal of elevating Houstonians by providing a platform for their stories, Milieu Media Group hopes to provide a platform for the city in general. Particularly in the relatively nascent podcast industry.
“I see no reason why we shouldn’t have the same reputation as cities like Chicago, NY and LA creatively. Especially in the podcast space,” says Brawner, who hopes The H and his Milieu network can play a prominent role in making that goal a reality.