Jordan and Daniel are the hosts of Thin Air 💠, a true crime podcast dedicated to investigating unsolved missing persons cases from around the world. With its narrative-driven stories, primary-source interviews, and hands-on investigative work, Thin Air is a top choice among true crime fans. The show has been featured on Buzzfeed, been in the iTunes top 10, and is routinely recognized by an array of media outlets for its excellence in journalism, reporting, and storytelling.
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Can’t attend the live event? Ask a question now and Burnie will answer it on Sep 22 2018 @04:30pm(ET) and we’ll let you know via email when your question has been answered.
Who has your favorite intern been so far?
That’s like asking me to pick between my fur babies!
Instead, I’ll say my favorite thing about each of our interns so far since they’ve all been amazing!
Claudia: She worked so hard! It was her mini-episode idea that even led to the Rick Garay episode. She went to school in Arizona and felt personally invested in the situation enough to research and interview for the eventual episode.
Kris: Jordan and I are admitted noobs when it comes to audio. You’ve really taught me a lot and that’s more than anyone could ever ask from an intern!
Bridger: He is so incredibly talents and it’s with his Adobe After Effects skills that we could finally execute our YouTube channel and have the companion videos we’ve always wanted. Plus, he loves shiba inus.
Jordan: I don’t want to pick favorites!! I was so proud of the work Claudia did and we spent a lot of time together working on an episode which she basically developed herself. She’s awesome. But I am also so grateful for the work done by both Bridger and Kris!
What episode has been the hardest to do from an emotional stand point?
Jordan: This is a hard question to answer because both Daniel and I get emotionally involved in each story, and often, we talk to the people who are the most devastated. So each case is emotionally difficult in its own way. I would say that one of the hardest for me recently was Nancy Paulikas, who had Alzheimer’s and went missing in LA in 2016. Just her condition before she went missing and the efforts of her husband Kirk to find her really made me feel so heartbroken.
Any story involving children is really hard for me.
Timmothy Pitzen’s disappearance was a hard episode to make. Imagining a mother murdering her innocent child is unbearable. I am so optimistic that he is alive, but I definitely cried a few times while making that episode and I don’t think I can say that about any other.
I also definitely got choked up during the Rick Garay episode when his fiance told the story about how she, in a chance encounter, ran into the family that had been last with Rick while crossing the Sonoran Desert. That wasn’t necessarily the hardest episode for me, more like just a moment that got to me.
It’s also hard to think about a particular episode as being too emotional or difficult because it’s more like the consistent flow of sad stories that makes it hard to handle over time.
What do you think has been your biggest personal achievement with the podcast thus far?
Jordan: Hi Jillian (who, by the way, hosts the amazing Court Junkie if you didn’t know and which you should listen to IMMEDIATELY)! Thank you so much for your question. I want to say that I’m really proud of how far our podcast has come and how much we’ve changed and grown as artists and writers, but it’s sort of hard to quantify that into a specific achievement. I’m just really proud of the work we do and how we have grown.
I’m particularly proud of the fact that I have created something I can call my own. So many people talk about doing something, but never actually do. I’m glad that when Jordan had the idea I felt inspired by it enough to be like, “then let’s just do it!” I’m also really proud that we’ve practically taught ourselves how to do everything–I’ve learned so much along the way and I’m excited by the idea that I also have a lot more to learn! 🙂 Thanks for the question Jillian!?
Lol, I didn’t mean to write !? it was a typo.
What first inspired the two of you to do a podcast like this?
Jordan: A couple of things come to mind, the first is other amazing podcasts like Serial and Criminal and just being in awe of what they could do and the stories they told. Next is definitely just being interested in true crime in general, shows like Forensic Files, Cold Case Files and Unsolved Mysteries. And lastly, just the idea that we wanted to do something creative that we were passionate about and just saying, let’s stop talking about it and do it.
I used to be obsessed with the Investigative Discovery show Disappeared. I’ve always been obsessed by mysteries and unsolved missing persons cases are kind of like the ultimate mystery–how can a person go missing when we all seem to be so interconnected?
When Disappeared went off the air (it’s back now, tho) I was so disappointed. Then Jordan had an idea–what if instead of being content consumers we become content creators. We could, if we really wanted, create the content we wanted! So we did and it’s been such an amazing experience so far!
From a creative or investigative standpoint, what do you feel you haven’t yet had the opportunity/resources to do?
Jordan: I would say that Daniel and I have always wanted to share our stories with a live audience, even if the prospect terrifies us a little bit. For some cases, I think we both wish we could travel to where the story took place and do more of a documentary-style, first-hand investigation – it just makes the story so much richer and more of an experience. We’ve been so lucky to have been able to do a few of these in Idaho, but we would love to do more.
From a creative standpoint I hope that one day we can join a network of other podcasts to help with promotion and publicity. We’re so thankful to have the advertising agency that we do, and I hope that we can join forces with a larger community that will help us be able to execute some of the larger goals we have. Like Jordan said, I’d really love to do a live show and/or travel. I’d also like to take a class or two on mastering audio, because that’s where I feel like I need to learn the most.
Since recording the missing person stories, have you heard any new leads on on any cases?
As anyone reached out to you two about a case?
Jordan: Hi Kim!! Thanks for your questions! We have had people reach out to us and point us to a story, which is so awesome. Sometimes it’s just a person interested in a particular case, or it’s someone in the family who wants to talk to us.
As far as new leads go, there have been a few, none of which we can talk about as new investigations have started and we don’t want to jeopardize anything! This is not the case for most of our stories, but some have had new detectives assigned because of our work and I think that’s really cool.
Putting out a podcast is work (and you do it very well!). There are deadlines and tasks, so could you share how it fulfills your creative side?
Jordan: Hi Bonnie! Thank you so much! There are a lot of technical aspects to the podcast, but I would say it’s mostly creative. Something I didn’t have much of a background in was interviewing people before this, and until you do it you don’t really realize what an art it is to have a good conversation with another person. My favorite part on the creative side of making a podcast is editing – because you can write it a certain way, and until you sit down and mold it into something it’s still just an idea. I love crafting the voices and music and ideas together.
Thanks for your question Bonnie and for being our first Twitter follower! <3
I think one of the coolest things is hearing a story you've worked so hard on come to life. From first reading about a story to doing the interviews and thinking about how you're going to structure the storyline. Then I begin imagining what kind of music I want and how the pacing will work and when I finally get into the editor and piece it together it's just an amazing feeling. Even though it's hard work to get there I always feel accomplished when it's done.