Mid Am Crisis ft. Mark Stewart – Owner, Tobacco Road Golf Club

The 13th hole at Tobacco Road Golf Club

Mark Stewart once had a crazy idea to build a golf course on his family’s old sand pit. Turns out it was a pretty good idea. Tobacco Road Golf Club has been wowing guests for over 20 years now and Stewart is still at the helm of the operation. When the project began in 1998, he took a chance on an up and coming golf architect named Mike Strantz. There was no way to know how impactful that decision would become. Today, Mike Strantz courses have a cult following and Tobacco Road is widely considered his masterpiece. Stewart has always liked taking risks and he’s still at working to make his dream course an even better place for people to have an unforgettable golf experience.

Stewart and I first met a few years ago when I was doing some reporting for the Golfer’s Journal on how Tobacco Road came to be. We’ve stayed in touch since the story came out and have become good friends. He keeps a close eye on trends in the golf industry and we often talk about how things are going at his course and here at my home track in Tallahassee. Now, as the COVID19 golf boom reaches the one year mark, I wanted to catch up with Stewart to see how things were going and what he is doing at Tobacco Road to seize on these generational golf business opportunities.

During our discussion, we talked about the impacts to golf travel, the surge in new players, and what strategies the Tobacco Road team has pursued to capture new business. We also dove into some of Stewart’s memories from the early days and working with Mike Strantz. I’m always impressed with how much he emphasizes the preservation of Strantz’s work there and we spoke on that as well. There is also a fun segment where we dive into Stewart’s favorite movie franchise – The Fast and the Furious. You will get a kick out of that.

It’s always a treat to talk to Mark Stewart and this episode was a blast to record. I’m headed up to Tobacco Road again soon and look forward to seeing that great place again with a new batch of friends. If you haven’t been yet…I highly recommend you go.

To learn more about Tobacco Road Golf Club, Mike Strantz, and all the great ways to experience the course please visit https://tobaccoroadgolf.com/

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.

Cheers,

-J

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Michael Murphy – Author, Golf In The Kingdom

Author, Michael Murphy

Michael Murphy’s book, Golf in the Kingdom, has sold over 1 million copies and has been translated into 19 languages. It’s one of the highest selling golf book of all time. His story about a chance encounter with a mystic golf professional in Scotland also changed my life.

I make no secret of my spiritual pursuits in golf and much of that has been inspired by the Golf in the Kingdom. Much like the book’s protagonist, I too was once a hot headed player obsessed with low scores the status that comes with them. After reading Murphy’s book, something changed in me. I began to seek out unique experiences in the game and worried less about perfecting it. The result was a true awaking.

Today, I feel as though my soul is tethered to golf and each time I walk a fairway at sundown I can hear the many memorable lines from Golf in the Kingdom running through my head. Through Murphy’s most acclaimed work, I found peace with my place in the game. Those revelations opened the door for me to start traveling and writing and talking with people on this very podcast. Now, that journey has come full circle as I’ve been fortunate to connect with Murphy and have one of the most special conversations of my life with him.

In this episode of Mid-Am Crisis, I had an extensive conversation with Michael Murphy about what he’s learned about life and golf in his 90 years. We talked about the impact Golf in the Kingdom has had for golfers like me around the globe and what he hopes the book’s lasting legacy will be. During our discussion, Murphy shared many of his theories on why golf creates moments of mysticism and other occult phenomenon. I shared with him a story of my own flirtations with the unexplained while playing golf on the Kiawah Island Ocean Course and dove into some theories I’ve developed about the game. For someone who has long admired his writings, having the chance to talk with Michael Murphy was one of the highlights of my golfing life.

I’m proud to share our full conversation and can’t wait to hear how other Golf in the Kingdom fans enjoy hearing it. I hope to hear more from Murphy in the future and our discussion makes me eager to read his writings once again. Each read inspires something new in my love for golf.

Golf in the Kingdom is available anywhere books are sold. Be warned though, it may lead to abnormal golfing behavior.

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/


Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.
Cheers,
-J


Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Tom Coyne – Author, A Course Called America

Tom Coyne, Author of A Course Called America

Tom Coyne doesn’t need much of an introduction. If you are a golf reader, his name will be familiar. Coyne is the author of a handful of moving golf books including a couple New York Times Bestsellers. His golf tales include popular titles such as A Gentleman’s Game, Paper Tiger, A Course Called Ireland, A Course Called Scotland, and his latest effort, A Course Called America. In those books, Coyne takes readers along with him on a series of ambitious adventures. All of which begin with a looming question and become a journey of personal discovery. In these beautifully told tales, Coyne takes readers right along with him on cross country adventures that provide a backdrop for stories about the people and places that make golf a game worth playing.

In addition to his books, Coyne has found a number of other impressive outlets to tell golf stories through. In recent years he has made a home at The Golfer’s Journal where he has authored numerous essays and articles about his experiences in the game. Recently, he has been named Senior Editor for the publication. Coyne has also spent time in front of the camera hosting a variety of shows included a digital series called The Links Life that chronicles his worldly travels. All of which is impressive for a married father of two girls who teaches full time at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia.

I’ve known Tom Coyne for a few years now and have thoroughly enjoyed his company on and off the golf course. He’s been a great guide on my own golf writing career journey and was even kind enough to write the forward for my first book, The Nine Virtues of Golf. I’m excited to dive into his latest book and with his new role at The Golfer’s Journal I’m looking forward to have him edit some of my work.

Coyne joins me on Mid-Am Crisis to talk about A Course Called America, his plans to promote the book this Summer, and what his new role with The Golfer’s Journal means for his career. We talked about life and golf of course and as always his sense of humor and enjoyable disposition made for a great conversation. I’m hopeful our travels will lead us to playing together again soon and perhaps he even will give me a good grade on my next submission to The Golfer’s Journal.

For more information on Tom Coyne’s writings and how to bring him to your club for a book signing, please visit https://www.tomcoyne.com/

Be sure to follow Tom Coyne on twitter at @CoyneWriter

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work here at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.
Cheers,
-J


Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Abby Liebenthal – Founder, Fore the Ladies

Abby Liebenthal’s passion for golf has opened a lot of interesting doors in her career. She’s worked with some of the leading organizations and brands in the golf industry including the AJGA, Tiger Woods Foundation, Titleist, Imperial Hats, and now the USGA. Her background in marketing and communications has helped her become a leading voice for how to engage golf fans with major brands. With the USGA, Liebenthal works to create memorable experiences and unique engagements for fans at the Men’s and Women’s U.S. Opens. Her career in golf has also led to a highly impactful side venture called Fore the Ladies that’s changing how many women enjoy the game.

Fore the Ladies is a non profit that Liebenthal founded with the purpose of creating fun and engaging experiences for women who want to both learn the game of golf and connect with others who love the game. What began as a single clinic has now grown into a movement with nationwide reach. Only a few years into the venture, Liebenthal has built a substantial golf community through Fore the Ladies and all signs point to continued growth. She has clinic and other gatherings scheduled across the country this year the women she has helped bring together are even taking matters into their own hands in their respective cities. As much as we all hate to use the phrase “grow the game”, Liebenthal’s Fore the Ladies initiative is doing just that.

During our discussion we dove into her career and talked about how golf brands are connecting with fans better than ever today. We also spent considerable time chatting about why she founded Fore the Ladies and where she hopes to take the organization in the future. Liebenthal is exactly the sort of person that golf needs more of and I’m delighted we got the chance to speak. One of these days we will surely tee it up somewhere and I hope to see a Fore the Ladies event in person soon. I’ve got a feeling that with her leadership and bold ideas the movement will only keep growing.

To learn more about Fore the Ladies and the great work happening there please visit https://foretheladies.net/

Also, be sure to follow Abby on Twitter at @AbbyLiebs

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.

Cheers,

-J

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Brendan Porath, Co-host of The Shotgun Start and Seasoned Golf Writer

Brendan Porath is one of my favorite voices in golf. He’s a witty writer with lots to say about the events that unfold in professional golf. He has also found ways to extend those talents into success in television and podcasting. Porath has blazed an interesting content trail in a career that has seen him contributing to a number of reputable outlets. At the time of our recording he had just started a new role with Golf Digest as an editor there. I’m excited to see what he produces there.

Many golf fans know Porath best for is his co-hosting duties on the popular podcast The Shotgun Start. Alongside Andy Johnson, he delivers laughs, nicknames, and serious golf takes on the show which drops every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The Shotgun Start has built a strong community of listeners who have embraced the banter between the co-hosts and helped turn it into a shared language online. Now a few years into that production journey, Porath and Johnson continue to raise expectations for how new age golf media can deliver compelling content.

Like many guests on this show, Porath and I have connected on Twitter and it was great to have an extensive conversation with him here. During our discussion we talked about his career journey, the success of The Shotgun Start, the state of the professional game, and why we both love squeezing in a late evening round of golf. There were quite a few good golf media takes as well.

Porath has carved a great place for himself in golf’s media landscape and I’m confident he will continue to be one of the voices who shapes its ongoing evolution. It was great to catch up with him and I’m looking forward to when we can enjoy some golf together sometime soon. Until then, I’ll keep laughing to he and Andy and enjoying his lovely words on golf.

Be sure to follow Brendan Porath on Twitter at @BrendanPorath and subscribe to The Shotgun Start podcast.

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.

Cheers,

-J

To find the show on Itunes visit https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/brendan-porath-co-host-shotgun-start-podcast-seasoned/id1533920338?i=1000518326527

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Casey Bannon, Assistant Editor – The Golfer’s Journal

Casey Bannon listens as Sidney Matthew is interviewed by Jay Revell at Matthew’s law office in Tallahassee, Fla., on Saturday, Feb. 7, 2020. Photo by Kevin D. Liles for The Golfer’s Journal

Casey Bannon gets text messages from me at all hours of the day and night. Most of them contain crazy ideas. Story pitches and other wild hairs that I hope will eventually become features in my favorite golf publication – The Golfer’s Journal. I’ve had the great fortune to contribute a few fun stories for the Journal in recent years and one of the best parts of that experience has been working with Casey. He’s the Assistant Editor there, but that title only covers a fraction of his value to their team.

Listen to my discussion with Casey Bannon of the Golfer’s Journal

The Golfer’s Journal works very much like a start-up. That means that Casey and other team members have to be able to do lots of different jobs. For him, that means writing features, editing others, producing podcasts, running live events, pushing merch, and even delivering social media content. Launched five years ago, the Journal is starting to hit an impressive stride. What started as a bold idea has now grown into one of golf media’s strongest brands. That starts with producing a beautiful quarterly magazine that their team refers to as “the book.” It’s a highly attractive product with a quickly growing customer base.

What makes the Journal stand out is its combination of stirring words and moving photography delivered on thick stock glossy pages. With golf stories presented in such a relentlessly beautiful way, their brand of reporting has challenged the idea that “print is dead.” Subscriptions are pricey, but those who are part of the “broken tee society” are buying much more than just a magazine. They are part of a growing culture of golfers who are looking for and finding a deeper and more meaningful experience in the game. The Journal does a brilliant job of packaging that together in the book, podcasts, merchandise, and events. What they are building is a community of golfers around the globe.

There is a lot to love about The Golfer’s Journal and Casey is one of the workhorses who helps make all that come to life. He joins me for a discussion about those efforts, his career in journalism, and what motivates him to keep delivering high-level storytelling. We also dive into a few projects we’ve worked on and share a few insider stories about how The Golfer’s Journal pushes the edge in golf media. Casey is a great guy who I enjoy working with and I’m glad to help others get to know him better through this episode. I’m also hopeful this will help keep him answering my late-night story pitch texts.

If you don’t subscribe to The Golfer’s Journal, I would highly recommend you go and do so right now. You can do so here https://www.golfersjournal.com/referral/c1791012277

Be sure to follow The Golfer’s Journal on social media at @golfersjournal and don’t forget to follow Casey Bannon at @caseyfbannon

The Golfer’s Journal Podcast is available wherever you listen to audio. Give it a listen and get hooked on their brand of storytelling.

Thanks as always for listening to Mid-Am Crisis. The show is brought to you by my friends at Imagine Golf – the #1 app for the mental game. Download Imagine Golf today and start your journey to an improved way of thinking on and off the course. https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter @JayRevell and find more or my work here at https://jayrevell.com/

If you enjoy the show, I would love for you to leave a review wherever you listen to podcasts.

Cheers,

-J

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Malcolm Scovil, Founder – Imagine Golf

Have you ever searched for help with the mental side of your golf game? I’ve always been a big fan of books that are aimed at sharpening these tools – Zen Golf, Golf is Not a Game of Perfect, and even Golf in the Kingdom come to mind. Those reads and many more have shaped how I view a round of golf.

I’ve also found that using meditation apps like Calm has been a great help in building a positive mindset in my everyday life. All of this is why I was so excited to hear about a new app that combines those approaches for golfers. It’s called Imagine Golf and my friend Malcolm Scovil is the founder.

Imagine Golf creates a moving listening experience as a way to help subscribers improve their mental game on and off the golf course. Malcolm and I connected when he was getting Imagine Golf up off the ground and I’ve enjoyed working with him to produce a few of my stories for the app. Since then, I’ve become a subscriber to Imagine Golf and have deeply enjoyed the daily mental lessons. Not only do they help me play better golf, but they also have brought me some clarity to other corners of my mind.

Malcolm and I have expanded our working relationship of late and Imagine Golf is now the sponsor of Mid-Am Crisis. I’ve loved getting to know him and his team and each time we talk reveals a new and interesting story about golf and life. Malcolm joins me on this episode to tell a few of those tales and help kick off our new partnership. If you enjoy the calming sound of his voice, you’ll really like hearing it come through the Imagine Golf app for a few minutes each day. I know that I do.

To learn more about Imagine Golf visit their website at https://www.imaginegolf.com/

Be sure to follow Imagine Golf on Instagram at @Imaginegolfers and on Twitter at @Imaginegolfers

If you like Mid-Am Crisis, you can find much more of it available here on my website at https://jayrevell.com/

Thanks for listening to Mid-Am Crisis – be sure to leave the show a review on your favorite listening device!

Cheers, -J

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC. Learn more at http://revellmedia.com/

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Christian Hafer – Chief Photographer, Golf Magazine

Christian Hafer working in his element.

Christian Hafer’s photographs always move me in some way. That’s why I’m really glad he decided to focus his craft on golf. I started following Hafer on Instagram back when he was relatively unknown and always was quick to compliment his work. Over the years our messages have ranged from photography to writing, and on to many other topics related to golf. He’s been one of my favorite internet pen pals and it has been a real pleasure to see his career take off the way it has.

I knew Hafer was destined for big things and when folks at the Golfers Journal and Golf Magazine came calling his status as one of golf’s top photogs was quickly cemented. Today, he’s raising a family and running point on all the photography for Golf Magazine/Golf.com while also working with some of the top brands in the sport. Those publications have never looked better as his work continues to evolve and impress. Hafer has been involved in a variety of other golf-related efforts including The Burning Cart Society( a personal favorite ) and I love hearing about what he’s cooking up next.

In this discussion, we touched on all sorts of creative concepts and of course talked in-depth about our love for golf, family, and the spiritual side of the game. While we’ve still never met in person, Hafer feels like an old friend. I think you’ll walk away with the same way after listening. 

If you don’t follow Hafer on Instagram you are missing out. Find him at @hafe_life You can also check out Hafer’s work at his website here https://www.christianhafer.com/

If you enjoy the Mid-Am Crisis podcast, you might like some of my writing too. You can find it here at https://jayrevell.com/

Be sure to follow me on Twitter too. I always like to stir up some trouble there. I’m at @jayrevell

Thanks again for listening. Reviews and comments are greatly appreciated on any of your favorite listening platforms. 

Cheers, -J

Mid-Am Crisis is a production of Revell Media, LLC http://revellmedia.com/

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Michael Wolf – President, 288 Sports

Michael Wolf is best known for his golf history enthusiasm on Twitter. His handle, @BamaBearcat , has become one of the top sources for interesting tidbits and unique stories about golf. He also chronicles his travels around the globe in pursuit of the game.

To support his golf habits and massive historical book collection, Wolf works as a full-time manager for multiple touring professionals. His company, 288 Sports represents a select number of PGA Tour members with which he has a close relationship. I’ve known Wolf through Twitter for a few years now and highly recommend him as a follow for my fellow golf history and travel enthusiasts.

One of these days I’m going to take him up on the offer to jump on a plane and go chase golf courses. Our conversation in this episode certainly made me eager to go. 

Be sure to follow Michael on Twitter at @BamaBearcat

You can also get a taste of his favorite courses in this great article – https://www.ukgolfguy.com/golf-blog/michael-wolf-favourite-courses

If you enjoy Mid-Am Crisis, be sure to subscribe to the show on your preferred listening platform. As always, you can find more of my work here at www.jayrevell.com and my company, Revell Media at www.revellmedia.com  

-J  

Mid-Am Crisis ft. Ed Bates(Gramps) – My Grandfather and former Club Professional at Havana Golf & Country Club

Gramps tees off for his weekly game at Havana Golf & Country Club

Mid-Am Crisis is a weekly podcast featuring intimate discussions with some of golf’s most interesting personas. The show is available anywhere podcasts are found.

My Grandfather, Ed Bates, is my golf hero. He taught me the game and has shaped so much about how I strive to live my life. His easy-going disposition and constant optimism have always been something I aspire to. Gramps, as I call him, was the club professional at the nine-hole course I grew up at. He worked behind the counter there for 35 years and touched a lot of lives along the way. For him, golf has always been a foundation for building friendships and a vessel on the journey towards self-improvement. I don’t think I’ve ever known anyone who loves the game as much as he does…and that’s saying something.  

We recorded this episode on the eve of Gramps’ 87th birthday. Amazingly, even at his impressive age, he still plays golf four days per week. On most of those occasions, he still beats his age. There aren’t many folks who spend every day at the place they worked for three decades but for Gramps the golf course is just home. He once told me that the secret to life was “a hard day’s work, a loving wife, and a happy child.” Golf was how he made that his reality.

During our discussion, we talked about how that all came to be. In addition to Gramps’ life story and golf legend, we also talked about some of the ways he’s taught the game to people. In those moments, he shares what I believe are some of the best lessons any golfer can learn. He’s a wise old sage and someday when we run out of chats like this I know I’ll be coming back to listen to this again and learn from him once more.  

Gramps, if you read this or ever listen to the show, please know that I love you dearly and can never thank you enough for giving me the gift of golf. The best I can do is share the game with others and try to spread the ideals that you taught me.  

For those who want to read more about Gramps, check out the story I wrote about him for Golf.com at the link below. https://golf.com/news/features/good-golf-monotonous-story-about-gramps-ed-bates/ 

If you enjoy Mid-Am Crisis, be sure to subscribe to the show on your preferred listening platform. As always, you can find more of my work here at www.jayrevell.com and my company, Revell Media at www.revellmedia.com

Cheers,

-J