The conversation that I had with Will Welch above would have been hugely satisfying if it were just him and I had it over a breakfast meeting at Lafayette. The fact that we could share it as a podcast really makes me happy. I greatly enjoy deep conversations with people where we go beyond the surface level small talk. Obviously, small talk is not the point of a podcast, but sometimes I think it’s difficult to truly get people to open up and be real. This wasn’t the case with Will and it never is. He’s the super talented guy who’s also loyal, kind, and accessible. As the person running GQ Will could be unapproachable and walled off. He’s the opposite. To say it’s refreshing is an understatement.
To me, it’s one of those situations where the person you want to get the big break gets it and you feel like a part of you won too. In the post-general-interest magazine era —where the publishing world is incredibly convoluted, I look at what Will is doing with GQ and it gives me hope. We need more good editorial in the world and less “content”. We need more people like Will and more of a focus on quality as the magazine advocates in the new issue. We need to be willing to accept the idea that hard decisions about our lives and to the fashion system need to be made if we are going to confront climate change. They are a fashion magazine advocating buying better but buying less. That’s a huge deal and any brand that has an issue with that is likely part of the problem.
As I said in the podcast, it’s cool to align with GQ on the concept of buy better, buy less. Despite all of the bad things that are happening in the world, I’m encouraged that some of the concepts I’ve been talking about since the early days of ACL are taking on a new form. It feels like the right time to be writing again and the perfect time to be talking to Will. I hope you enjoy our conversation.
ACL in FADER in 2009
The ACL Podcast is also available on Apple and Spotify.