James Brown is tv producer and creator of a divorce talk show in Utah called Divorce Talk Show. Mr Brown is a positive, creative personality who is a true influencer in the divorce industry and who is trying to make a difference in people's lives. We are proud of having had the opportunity to speak with him. Interview by Marion TD Lewis, Editor in Chief of Divorce Saloon Edited by Jeannie Goldstein, former Editor of Divorce Saloon
INTERVIEW WITH MR. JAMES BROWN
Divorce Saloon: Hello Mr. Brown, so good to meet you, finally!
James Brown: Well, hello Marion my pleasure!
Divorce Saloon: I apologize this took a little bit of time to come together but I am here now and you have my undivided attention. So, I’m Marion TD Lewis, the editor of Divorce Saloon International. We are basically a divorce website having to do with all things divorce and my intern met you on Twitter and said we have a lot in common and that I should interview you. When I saw your bio, I agreed right away that you are a person we should aim to speak with.
James Brown: I like your undivided attention, Marion. I’m James Brown Producer and Host of Divorce The Talk Show and four beautiful children. I would like to pursue our commonality, that almost always helps when you’re trying to make a difference in this world, so I look forward conversating with you, I hope you like that word?
Divorce Saloon: Conversating? It’s a cute one. Well, first, allow me to begin by saying congratulations on your talk show. You are based in Utah, is that correct?
James Brown: Well, thank you for your accolade. Divorce The Talk Show is still a project that takes much of my time effort and soul. I am based in Utah and have been for many years, I tell the story that while traveling I missed the exit and ran out of gas. I once was asked what keeps a black man in Utah besides my wonderful children. I tell this story: One Sunday I was reading the obituaries and could not find a black person listed anywhere, after a couple of times of not finding any black people in the obituaries, I came to the conclusion that black people don’t die in Utah so I decided to stay!
Divorce Saloon: OMG. That is a little bit morbid and a little bit hilarious at the same time, Mr. Brown. So how long have you been hosting your show, may I ask?
James Brown: It’s interesting that you ask that question, I started to develop the show about 5 years ago about the same time of my divorce, so it’s been a combination of development and producing vignettes, segments and several episodes, so about 5 years.
Divorce Saloon: Wow. And who is your target demographic?
James Brown: The demographics are very broad in that they range statically from 20 something to 50 plus, particularly when you consider the more that 2 million couples get divorced annually, that’s some 46 thousand a week and rising here in the states.
Divorce Saloon: I see. So, I am told that you are both creator and producer of the show. What made you decide to create and produce this show? What was your inspiration? And how is it possible that one person can be and do so many things themselves?
James Brown: As you may know I am a divorced man, which caused me to reflect on my situation where I found myself alone, my friends vacated me and I lost my business, which by the way was a full service film and television production facility and to answer your question I have been in the television business for quite some time as a feature news reporter for ABC News, produced several national television shows, and hosted produced and created those show. So the foundation was there and having no money, you and I realize if you want something done you have to do yourself.
Divorce Saloon: Tell me about it. That is the ultimate truism, isn’t it? Nothing about any of this is easy….Do you find that there is a high incidence of divorce in Utah, Mr Brown? I mean, this is Utah. I would not expect a very high rate of divorce here. Am I stereotyping?
James Brown: Yes, I suspect that question came to mind much because of the religious perspective in that Utah is a heavy Mormon population? Well it’s estimated at about 4.9 (24th-tied) in the United States, I suspect that these numbers have risen and are growing because of our social dysfunctional society and the effects of social media.
Divorce Saloon: I see. Notwithstanding the situation in Utah, what do you think is the main reason that there is such a high divorce rate nationally and what do you think can be done to reduce this high incidence of divorce in society? Is social media really to blame? And can this trend be turned back?
James Brown: I think we have become a community of selfishness and a me me society, striving for individual attention and a refusal to maintain responsibility in our relationships. Marriage has taken a turn in a different direction, in that we don’t marry because of family and tradition and the pursuit of a quality of life with a mate that we choose to spend our lives with forever. Love takes on a different paradigm it’s all about a booty call, we don’t work at building a sound foundation and the world is filled with distraction, kisses are passed around like candy and everything else along with it. If you catch my drift. Of course, we can turn it back that’s what Divorce the Talk show is all about, as we clear up this myth of divorce we lay a foundation that keeps folks married for the greater goal. Love, Family, Children and the pursuit of happiness.
Divorce Saloon: Giggle, giggle, Mr. Brown. Mr. Brown, I see you are also planning to have a dating site attached to your talk show. Can you talk to us a little bit about that? What is your strategy for this aspect of your brand and do you really believe that the world needs another dating site? How will your site be different?
James Brown: Well my concern is that many divorced individuals at some point in time as they evolve will pursue a mate, we want to make sure that there is a place for them to go and get advice on co-parenting, blending families, financial and basic relation guides so that they don’t repeat the same mistakes that caused them to divorce, and so on. We know that 60 percent of second marriages end in divorce, and 73 percent of all third marriages end in divorce. So, we have a total continuation of bodies left on the highway of divorce.
Divorce Saloon: Who is the typical user of the dating site that you envision in terms of age, race, orientation, etc.? Are you targeting any specific demographics?
James Brown: Again, I know demographics is the key to understanding the marketplace, but we have an interesting demographic platform because we are specific to our target market niche divorce, we will be the true representative of diversity. But what really sets us apart is that our dating site’s association with our television show and the access to all of our incredible experts.
Divorce Saloon: You know, Mr. Brown, I must confess something. I was a little bit envious when I saw your website because you have achieved what I have been trying to do for the past decade with having your own talk show! It is what I want to do when I grow up. Host a talk show about divorce. What advice do you have for people like me in the divorce industry who are trying to create solutions and to innovate but who may not be as well connected as others in the industry? I imagine you have a lot of experience with the business aspect of these things?
James Brown: First of all Marion, you should call me and let’s talk I am impressed with your questions and I would be interested in hearing your story. Please send me your bio and photo. We are working on producing a number of shows. Becoming a popular talk show host is difficult but with the right stuff it’s achievable. So, my friend I invite you to follow-up and send me information and I would be willing to take a serious look at the possibilities, do you have any video of you that you can send me?
Divorce Saloon: Well, I mean, not on hand but I imagine I could whip something up, sir! But quite seriously let’s discuss that later. Mr Brown, the divorce industry is said to be a $50 Billion Dollar industry today. That number is probably already closer to $60 billion, in fact. And, so, there are a lot of opportunities for a lot of people to make a lot of money catering to this prodigious target market. But how do you respond to people who say that people like us are “profiting from other people’s heartache and misery?”
James Brown: I can’t speak for others but I will say you don’t come off that way. Certainly, I am trying to make a living at doing this project and success goes hand and hand with being able convince individuals to follow your direction. Making money is not a bad thing it how you make it and what you do with it which can be the problem. I am helping people because many need a helping hand and I’m capable of extending my hand. To heck with the haters!
Divorce Saloon: Point well taken. You mentioned you had been divorced and that this was the impetus to start the talk show. Are you personally turned off from marriage as an institution or would you say that life goes on, as does marriage after divorce? Would you say you are a happily divorced man? If so what crucial lessons did you learn from your own divorce?
James Brown: Yes, I am divorced. I support marriage, I support divorced individuals and I have no choice be to be happy because I have taken my problem and issues and I am using them to help others. That makes me happy!
Divorce Saloon: Aw, that’s nice. Well, thanks so much for chatting with me today Mr. Brown. It truly was a pleasure to meet you and to talk to you. If I am ever in Utah, I hope one day you will be kind enough (hint, hint) to invite me on your talk show. Well, actually, I hope you are serious about looking at the possibilities. I will send you my dossier.
James Brown: Marion, thank you for allowing me to present my soul. I expect to receive your bio picture and any video soon. I will invite you to be a guest. God Bless you.
Divorce Saloon: Thank you. You too, sir.
Image Courtesy of James Brown
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