Hamilton Leithauser (The Walkmen) Talks with Randall Poster on the Talkhouse Podcast

Lana Del Rey, Christian Bale, Gummo and birdsong

This week’s Talkhouse episode was recorded live at the On Air Festival in Brooklyn recently—that explains why you’ll hear some audience questions at the end—and it features Hamilton Leithauser and Randall Poster, two interesting guys who were just meeting for the first time.

Leithauser is best known as the frontman for The Walkmen, the New York band that put out a string of incredible records between 2000 and 2013 before going on a hiatus that lasted a decade—they reunited for a tour last year and have some festival dates lined up for this year. But Leithauser kept plenty busy during the band’s downtime, releasing three great records on his own—and he’s apparently got another one just about ready to go. Perhaps more relevant to this conversation, at least a bit, is the fact that he’s recently gotten into making music for film and TV. Avid Talkhouse listeners will remember that he was on the podcast last year talking with Ethan Hawke about a Paul Newman documentary they worked on together. Leithauser’s latest project in that realm is music for a doc series that just premiered at Sundance, and he also just finished up his yearly residence at the posh Cafe Carlyle.

You may not immediately recognize the name of today’s other guest, but Randall Poster has almost certainly played you a song that you love at some point over the past few decades. As the go-to music supervisor for some incredible filmmakers, he’s helped set the mood for more than 200 movies. Perhaps most notably Poster has worked repeatedly with Wes Anderson, a director for whom the soundtrack is massively important. Watch the credits next time you love the song choices in a movie, and you might just see his name. Poster also recently curated a huge 20-LP box set called The Birdsong Project Collection, which you’ll hear about in this chat as well.

Elsewhere, Leithauser and Poster talk about their jobs, about other podcasts—including one they had in common, called Call Your Grandmother. They get into the story of how Poster got into his unusual profession, and Leithauser talks about a Springsteen cover he recorded that may never see the light of day. Leithauser also talks about the time the presence of Christian Bale basically ruined a Walkmen show, though he can’t quite remember the movie it was surrounding: Guys, it was Terrence Malick’s already-kinda-forgotten film Song To Song. Enjoy.

Thanks for listening to the Talkhouse Podcast, and thanks to Hamilton Leithauser and Randall Poster for chatting. If you liked what you heard, please follow Talkhouse on your favorite podcasting platform, and check out all the goodness at Talkhouse.com. This episode was produced by Myron Kaplan, and the Talkhouse theme is composed and performed by the Range. See you next time!

(Feature photos courtesy of On Air Fest, edited by Keenan Kush.)

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