We interviewed four Londoners who created The Out of Home podcast which discusses life, community and culture from Amsterdam.
Please introduce yourselves?
“Yaf, originally from south London, now living in Amsterdam. Working in the creative industry.”
“My name is Kwame, Kwarmz or Papikwarmz. I think it’s evident with the names, that I’m all about themes. Born and raised in South London, my background is Ghanaian and I’ve been living in Amsterdam for about four and a half years now. I’m a copywriter working in advertising and that’s how I pay the bills.“
“My name is Steven, also known as Pampz, Pampi. Born in Nigeria, moved to England, worked in Nigeria, South Africa, England, and now Holland. Blessed to work in the sports industry doing digital marketing. I’d describe myself as a joker and king of the one liners.“
“I’m Kieran also known as Kie or KK. Born and raised in South London and from a Jamaican family. I moved to Amsterdam Summer 2018. People would say I’m pretty creative, I write music and film but I work in advertising as a digital strategist day to day.“
Please introduce the concept of the podcast, and how it came about?
“As a concept Out of Home has a number of meanings to us, in the literal sense it represents being away from home and how that change has affected different areas of our lives, but on a more metaphorical level it embodies the idea of stepping out of your comfort zone and being open to new experiences. There’s also the irony that we actually record inside a house and it’s a cheeky nod to the industries we work in.
It all stemmed from wanting to do more creatively and we noticed that Amsterdam has a huge community of people that have moved away from their homes to work and live in the city. As four Londoners, all from the ends, we thought not only could we give people back home an insight of our experiences but also give Dutchies and other Internationalist living here a deeper understanding of London culture and happenings back home.”
Describe the podcast in one word?
What made you decide to relocate to Amsterdam?
Kwame: “For a long time, I was more than happy to spend the rest of my days in London. Around seven years ago, I was approached about a job in Dubai and I think that set the ball rolling in terms of me being open to a new experience. Amsterdam wasn’t particularly high on my list to be honest, but I knew that if I didn’t take the opportunity, I would always regret it.
Now I love Amsterdam and have to say moving out here was the best thing I’ve ever done personally and professionally.“
Yaf: “I really wanted to see what else the world had to offer. I love that LONDON raised me, but my mind was way too curious to say no to a work opportunity living abroad.”
Steven: “I came over because I got my dream job opportunity, and in the process I discovered Amsterdam and a whole new life. I threw myself into a situation, and 4 years later I’m still here and enjoying every minute with my people.“
Kieran: “I’ve always been interested in learning and understanding a new culture, but also wanted to use the opportunity to really focus on my personal development in every aspect, but especially from a creative perspective.“
Would you recommend the city to Londoners?
Steven: “For sure, it’s a quieter, smaller version of London. There’s a lot to do, everything is close by, great parks and a well organised city. There’s a lot of diversity, the people are great, genuinely laid back and chilled. The summers here … I won’t say no more, come see for yourself.”
Yaf: “100%, and not just for the tourist destinations like the red light district or coffee shops, but to truly experience the intricacies of the city. That means renting a bike and not going Uber everywhere!”
Who is the ideal listener?
“We feel our pull is quite wide as it identifies with various demographics on different levels. But ultimately, anyone that’s curious about life outside of their immediate environment, anyone wanting to learn more about culture. People that just want to smile and laugh.”
What are some things that you miss about London?
Kieran: “Face to face interactions with your family and friends, that’s a tough one. FOOD! It’s so hard to find a good Caribbean take away and when I first heard the price of haircuts here, I was glad I was growing dreads.”
Steven: “Family and friends is the big one. The culture, just London is London and it’s hard to replicate. Also, the food choices in London are A1.”
Yaf: “Family and friends of course, but everyone will say that! Cheap (and reliable) trims, consistently good Caribbean food. That’s probably it to be fair, Amsterdam has a lot to offer.”
Kwame: “Friends and family, I would say. The spontaneity of doing certain things as well. Before, I could call up one of my boys or my brother or sister and just arrange to meet. There and then. Or just to go downstairs and annoy my mum by hugging her and not letting go!”
Have you found a community within Amsterdam?
Yaf: “At first it was difficult, but yes. There’s a huge expat community here which I was conscious of not becoming too involved in, simply because you tend to live in a bubble, oblivious to the realities of the city. There’s a huge creative scene here with wonderfully open minded people, plus everyone loves a Londoner, so we are embraced quite well!”
Kieran: “I’ve been here the shortest time, so I’m still building my network but what I will say is, it’s a huge test especially when you get here. It’s the first time since you were a child that you have to make new friends and it forces you out of your comfort zone. It also helps you find out what you truly like. But once you spend some time here you realise that people are pretty friendly, the city’s super chilled and you eventually find your tribe.”
Steven: “Definitely, the big thing here is people are so approachable it makes it easier. There is a thriving scene of creatives and they just love connecting with people. Sporting community is strong here, and it’s been great to connect with locals on sport and understand what moves them. The music scene is fresh, and we’ve had great conversations with artists, producers, etc. It’s a diverse city, Amsterdam so being able to within connect with people from different cultures has been a blessing.”
Kwame: “Yeah, I have. That did take a while though, because living in an international city like Amsterdam, a lot of people come and go, and then you might be introduced to different circles. It’s all about finding your group and moving forward.”
What is the long term/end goal of The Out of Home Podcast?
“Firstly to assist in shifting the narrative around the black community. A lot of the people we look up to are often in sports or music, but we want to shed light on the different individuals doing amazing things to spark new ideas.
Then continue to move forward on the concept of “Out of Home” – The podcast is really a platform, we want to inspire and enable people to tap into their creativity, which can take shape in many forms. But on top of this, there are millions of people around the world, living abroad in uncharted territory – we aim to create a community of people who can link up, converse and ultimately collaborate. Watch this space.”