Audible.ca is bringing you some of the countries most exhilarating, brilliant, and in some ways absurd heists! Starring Colm Feore, audible.ca is eager to bring Canadian stories to Canadian people, starting with sharing the exciting unknown stories about the mastermind crimes of the north. HOLR chatted with show host Colm for some insight about what to expect, and ways audible.ca is helping Canadian’s get involved in learning and sharing their stories.
Audible announced its inaugural collection of Canadian Audible Originals – a collection of content celebrating Canadian voices! Created specifically for the audio format, these Canadian Audible Originals will offer an immersive experience with content featuring a range of celebrated Canadian writers, storytellers, hosts, performers and industry leaders including Yannick Bisson, Sarika Cullis-Suzuki, Catherine Hernandez, Robert J. Sawyer, Tanya Talaga, Jael Richardson, Andrew Pyper and many more. As of today, as these Canadian Originals are announced, two new podcasts – True North Heists with Colm Feore and The Revisionaries with Michele Romanow – are also live and free for all Canadians – Audible members and non-members – from today until October 27.
These Audible Originals will be released to Canadians and shared with the rest of the world, further amplifying Canadian voices to global audiences. Content announced today will continue to be released throughout Fall 2020 and much of 2021, with more projects to be announced and released regularly in the future.
What Inspired this show, and how long has it been in the making?
They’ve been years in the making of the new audio original series, sweating over titles and ideas for a long time and reaching out to creatives for years, so I would say it’s a few years in the making. I got involved about 8-9 months ago when they came to me saying “ we have a show, it’s 10 episodes, could be fun”, and we had a relationship beforehand because I had worked for audible, I recorded for audible.com, I also did, because he had other things to do, I did the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s book “Common Ground” in both english & french. So we did that, and they knew where to find me so when it came to these particularly Canadian stories, “True North Heist”, they thought maybe i’d be interested in doing it, and I was. It fit in just after I finished the second season of a television series for Netflix called “The Umbrella Academy”.
We are able to be remote, and quick. We get everything prepared then dive in, finishing all our episodes in a short period of time. Audibles are very good & professional that way.
What was the most absurd heist you learned about when studying these stories?
The most absurd was really, and quintessentially Canadian one is “The Great Maple Syrup Caper”. That heigh was successful, effective, and ridiculous. It’s hard to believe, but it turns out that all the maple syrup we eat here in Canada, and all the maple syrup that is sent around the world actually just sits in a warehouse in Quebec, behind a small fence, with a small chain, and a padlock.Basically, maple syrup is made by small little operators, they have a little sugar bush, and a sugar shack of their own, like dairy farmers who bring their product to the producers, they’re not sitting with it on the farm. So, bottom line is, the same kind of collaborative co-op set up for maple syrup exists in Quebec. It’s very you need to be a member of the club in order to sell. Nobody likes you selling under the table. People generally play by the rules, and it turns out the rules are pretty slack. It turns out they put all of the production of Quebec manly syrup in a small rusty warehouse in 16,000 barrels of maple syrup just waiting, so we can control commodities price of it. Some clever criminal realized “Wait a minute, there’s millions of dollars of maple syrup, sitting in a shed, behind a padlock, and a pretty incompetent security guard, who’s not paid enough to look out for their security. They decide to co-op this guy, “Hey! Want a little extra money? Look the other way while we break the stupid lock. If you want to make some serious dough, maybe you can operate the forklift and drive us in, and we can shove these barrels out. We’ll start small, take a few out, empty them, easy! They forgot though, that somebodies got to count it. Some poor accountant almost got himself killed tripping over the 16,000 barrels realizing there’s only 15,995, and nearly fell over and broke his neck over it, then realized some were empty! After that everything unravelled, and what was a genius, brilliant masterplan became a sticky mess. I find it amusing, daring, bold, in genius, and worth listening to.
What Makes this show different form other True Crime Media?
Principally, we’re talking about reaching out with Canadian voices to Canadian audiences. We are very interested in saying “Listen, if you thought for a minute your stories weren’t interesting, compelling, and fascinating, you’re wrong. We’re going to tell you a few of those and how some brave/criminal souls tried their very best to get away with it and may or may not have succeeded.” Along the way, what happens with it is that we are telling ourselves, our stories. What i’m really proud of audible.ca for doing and investing is that this is just the beginning of a long commitment to Canadian voices, creative artists, vocal narrators, studio directors, engineers, writers particularly, to tell our story. Not only are they going to support that, they are going to reach out with “we know you have a story to tell, we have the tools to help you tell it. Tell us what you need; mentors, technical support, writers to tell your stories – we will invest in you.” So, i’m really proud to be here on the cusp of audible.ca’s commitment to Canada and audible stories. I have to say, I know I will be proved right in 2-3 years when suddenly the market is flooded with such a diversity, an inclusive diversity, of Canadian voices & Canadian stories. Then Canadians will say “Hey, i thought closing our borders was a bad thing. But there’s a lot to love about us”. So I think that’s where it’s going.
Do you have any advice for people looking to make a podcast?
Reach out. There will be forums where you can suggest to the audible.ca people “look, i’ve got a great idea. I’d like to be heard” What I strongly suggest is you go through official channels rather than just sitting at your own computer at home, and trying to self produce & publish. I would look at these folks with immense support and experience to support you in what you want to do. Support you in moving forward and giving you all the tools you need to succeed. We all need help to do this stuff, and audible has the pro’s to help. Reach out, “hey! I want in on this, how can I be a part of it?” They’ve voiced a commitment to help.
Audible Canada Originals is offering this free to everyone Oct 13th – Oct 27th to try it out and listen to it all for free! Hopefully it’ll give people a chance to give it a listen, and see what they think.