You know the voice, now meet the boy man. Since the early days of BlogTalkRadio, Brett Cohen has been a force to be reckoned with, what with his trademark wit and ingratiating demeanor. Then of course there’s his roster of A-list guests, which has – in the past six months alone – included Jimmy Fallon, Paris Hilton, Mandy Moore, Mick Fleetwood, Nancy O’Dell and Carson Kressley. Along with way, his interviews have been picked up in such powerhouse news outlets as People magazine online and the New York Post. So if that’s any indication, the still-in-his-teens host, who hails from Long Island, N.Y., and who’ll be transferring from Penn State to Quinnipiac University in Connecticut this fall, should have quite a career ahead of him. (We just hope he isn’t snatched up by the Big Media boys before landing Jack Nicholson or Angelina Jolie.)
Give us a 15-second pitch for your show – why should listeners tune in?
World Talk Live! has been keeping BlogTalkRadio listeners captivated for nearly two years now. Each week, I interview a wide variety of people with compelling, news- worthy stories to tell (whether they come on the air intending to tell them or not). My guests range from musicians to actors to com- edians to media figures to polit- icians to folk heroes – you name it.
Tell us two things listeners would be surprised to learn about you?
The first is my age. I’m only 18, so I can’t legally drink on the air (though I can drive – and eat most snack foods). My youth usually shocks people because of how much I’ve accomplished thus far in my career. For example, from 2006 to 2008 I was the prime minister of Canada. Then again, I don’t usually talk about my age because I want to be taken seriously (so immediately after reading it, please shred this web page).
The second thing is that I do great vocal impersonations, and have even created my own characters for the show. While my background isn’t in acting, I’ve been told that I have a natural comic sense. My dream job would be to join the cast of Saturday Night Live.
Who’s your broadcasting hero?
I can’t really narrow it down to one person. But Howard Stern has long been an inspiration, simply because of all the attacks and other obstacles he has had to put up with to maintain his style. So I’ll always appreciate his innovation. But I think that the media and entertainment industries have been my main motivation for taking to the airwaves. There are so many talented people who work in broad- casting, and just being a part of that is immensely fulfilling.
If you could book any person on earth as a guest on your show, who would it be and why?
I really enjoy interviewing politicians, so it would be great to speak with Barack Obama. The story of his rise to power is fascinating – and he’s the coolest commander-in-chief our country has ever seen. So an interview with him would be meaningful in many ways. But the chances of that happening seem slim. Then again, I never thought that I’d interview some of the people who’ve already appeared on my show, Ralph Nader or Akon or even Gennifer Flowers. The truth is, I appreciate when anyone comes on my show and gives me some of their time.
As we speak, what are you wearing?
Hugo Boss jeans, a dark-blue polo shirt, New Balance sneakers. Chrome by Azzaro is my fragrance of choice this evening.
What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever done while in the middle of hosting your show?
During my interview with Paris Hilton, I asked her out on a date. She’d just broken up with Benji Madden, so I figured it couldn’t hurt. She, of course, declined my offer, and then went on to explain that it wasn’t the appropriate time for me to invite her into a relationship. (Well, Paris, we’ll always have BlogTalkRadio.)
To sample Brett’s show, click here.
To read how Brett recently landed in People magazine online, click here.
And to read how he elicited a shot from Jerry Seinfeld’s TV mom that was read ’round the world, click here.
To read all our SoundBits profiles, click here.