Chat it up with Chatty Light

Published 10:13 am Wednesday, October 27, 2021

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We love the star which proclaims, “You are here!” It centers us, it gives us direction, it puts it all in context. Life would be so much easier if it came with a little red star letting us know exactly where we are in the journey. Or would it? If we know exactly where we are, we might miss the delightful little hints leading us to star. We might miss the little things if the big thing was so blatant.  A local podcast crew, made up of three friends already knows you are here. They are far more interested in knowing how you got here.

We end up right “here” in Americus for various reasons. Some of us showed up on the scene and never ventured from here. Some of us were plopped down right in the middle of here. Others have left only to return back here. Americus does that. She draws you here for many a reason, and your season spent belonging to us may be brief or it may be a lifetime. You keep your eyes and ears open long enough and you’ll come to know a truth about Americus. Her story is all about you. While it is true her architecture, her nooks and crannies and her history are all special, it is but her accent. To really know Americus, sit a spiel with her characters, soak in her people.

The gentlemen of Chatty Light are helping you do just that. They fully know each resident brings something unique and worthy. They understand each character must be fleshed out to truly enjoy the story. Colton Mims, Douglas Durrance and Alex Helms have been unveiling some of our characters to share with you on their podcast, Chatty Light. All three men have worked at an Americus institution, Pat’s Place. All three men have seen our characters in action and have been intrigued by their stories. When it comes to deciding who’s story should be told, Colton indicates, “everyone deserves an episode!” It’s a pretty big task to go in-depth with all the characters Americus has to offer and the men are going about it in a meaningful way. First, they ask people “in their circle” to join the podcast, from there they hear names outside the circle, and on some occasions, they will hit local events to see who happens to stop by. What started with a direct connection ultimately draws in folks from all walks of life. That within itself is so very Americus.

Chatty Light guys and Pat
Douglas Durrance, Colton Mims, Pat Spann and Alex Helms

The talent however is a powerful ingredient which makes it all come together. The guys recorded their first episode on Pat Spann around Halloween. With the need to get more content ready they recorded more guests. Finally ready to kick off what they refer to as “season zero” the first episode was broadcasted in April. Colton is the host and producer of the show. Alex joins in with his engineering skills to ensure sound quality and editing is just so. Douglas is the artist in the bunch, he is tasked with branding the concept and hooking folks into the show. The more you know about Chatty Light the more you will want to know its story. The idea of telling your story is a simplistic one but can be daunting. The podcasts are anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours. Most folks are hard pressed to think they are interesting enough to fill that kind of space and even less inclined to think it possible with sound equipment in their face. The men have a way of creating the prefect atmosphere to invite stories to unfold.

After identifying a “must hear story,” they invite the guest over. Much like true friends, there is an invitation extended to share a little porch time over a drink. The chatting starts there on the porch way before a “tape” starts to roll.  By the time you are sitting in front of a mic, you have made a friend in the three men and when the record button is hit, the chat simply continues. Like most good conversation, there is a give and take, complete with what Colton refers to as “riffs.” As in real life, some topics demand to be fleshed out and that is exactly what happens on Chatty Light. There is a real feeling you are listening to friends roll out a story, but the story happens to be about you. Chatty Light is indeed a chat, and the players all have an important role in making it a reality. Douglas introduces you to Chatty Light with his branding. You know it is going to be fun and light, because branding about Chatty Light points to that truth.  Colton is a particularly good conversationalist and there is something about his face which makes you want to tell your story. Alex, meanwhile, takes good care to handle your story with the respect it deserves. At the end of the day, you have a delightful little tale spun which fills in a space which can only be filled with a story of you.

Some of Douglas’ work

There are a few areas the Chatty Light guys see themselves really shining. First, in learning more about the special qualities that make you, you. Second, to flesh out political candidates. The guys are hopeful their brand of knowledge will truly help our community to see candidates for the people they are. Colton, Alex and Douglas admit to seeing a “information vacuum.” Although we have media which tries to fill in the vacuum, not everyone listens to the same radio station or subscribes to the paper. They see podcasts as being extremely accessible to the average voter and they take seriously their ability to present the “realness” of a candidate. As voters, the gentlemen think “we miss out because we can’t hear what they (candidates) are really about.” They understand in presenting the candidate through conversation the voter has the best chance to choose their candidate based upon who they truly are rather than “demographics or by party.” Chatty Light has sat down for such conversations for the upcoming mayoral race, and those episodes are being enjoyed by a large audience. Lastly, there is a desire to highlight local talent. The guys are big believers in the power of musical expression and are motivated to get the talent heard with minimal barriers. They have already offered live music to the city, and it was proven to be successful without sacrificing integrity.

Chatty Light employs the bare minimum in podcasting equipment to include a podcasting desk Colton’s wife, Abby, gave him as a surprise. Their material is enjoyed in its purity at no charge to the listener. There is an option to donate directly on their podcast site, and the guys are gathering those dollars to purchase more equipment to ensure they can keep telling stories. However, they are reserving a seat for a very special partner. This partner would have to believe in our region and be a good fit for Chatty Light’s founders as well as their audience. Although it is a specially reserved place, the Chatty Light guys are hoping to partner with a sponsor who sees all that is special about Americus and Southwest Georgia. The guys are big believers in investing their dollars into the area and hope a partner will further support their efforts. With a partner’s help they could bring more content and cover more events.

Interested in hearing a great story brought to you by some great guys? Give Chatty Light an ear. They can be found on Facebook at chattylightpodcast, on Instagram at chattylight and on Twitter at light_chatty. Or, if you want to go straight to the source, head over to and take a stroll through the archived episodes for a favorite tale. Want to tell of your story or take the chair reserved for a partner? Drop them an email at or ring their bell at 229.938.0686. You are indeed here. What you might not have known, is you are the star.