We had the good fortune of connecting with Mike Masilotti and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mike, what do you attribute your success to?
The people I work with. Starting with the co-owner Nolan Culver and his wife Betsi. We are a great team and consistently work to make the company grow.
I could never have done anything close to what I have been able to do with Third Wheel if it wasn’t for them. Having a good team around you is so necessary.
Even our engineers at the Podcast Studio are so solid it allows us to not focus on the day to day. This helps us grow even faster.
I would 100% say having a great team has been the most important factor behind our success.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I am the co-owner of Third Wheel Podcast Studio. Not only do we record podcasts in house for people but we also help with the pre and post production of it. Making logos, theme songs and intro videos as well as doing final edits and audio production. We do it all and in a great environment. Our engineers are like no other. Working hand in hand with our podcasters making sure they get everything they imagined out of their show while also always trying to exceed those expectations. We have inters on site helping out with the overall production and client needs. We are there for you from beginning to end and make sure that the process of starting a podcast isn’t as scary as it seems and is actually extremely fun and very rewarding. We just tell people to focus on their show and leave all of the annoying production stuff to us!
It was far from easy building this company but honestly that is a good thing. The lessons I have learned in patience, working with a partner and what hard work really is are priceless. We have grown a lot in a year and a half recently opening our second location in Seattle, WA. That presented us a whole new challenge that we are currently attacking. It hasn’t been easy but it has been so fun and rewarding that when it does get rough we know that we just gotta push through it and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. There always is. Some tunnels are just longer than others.
By the way, this whole thing honestly started as an accident. I was always super into radio and when podcasting came into my life I was instantly attracted to that. Slowly putting together the equipment in my bedroom and converting my entire room to a mini audio podcast studio. Just a Zoom recorder, multiple mics and mic stands with some friends telling stories. I was always trying to get better though. So I added one camera. Game changer. At this point I am at a new apartment and we are starting to make the background look nice and then also live streaming the podcast. Constantly adding to it making it better and better. This took years by the way. Then Nolan was a co-host on one of the too many podcasts I started. The home studio was looking good and we were at the point of now just upgrading all of the equipment we had to professional equipment. During this period I got a few phone calls asking where I recorded my podcast and how to rent that space. People didn’t know it was in my living room. Me and Nolan had the idea that maybe what we’re building is valuable to other people and we should rent a small space and put a podcast studio in it.
We are both stand up comedians and that is our passion. This happened completely by accident but it ended up taking over our lives in a good way. We quit our jobs and focus now solely on the company. We love everything we do and all of the people we work with. We are all about vibe at our company and our brand is huge to us and means a lot to us. Nolan comes from a skateboarding background and I was a musician. We bring very different but extremely similar feels to the company and its a great thing.
We are going to keep pushing, expanding and innovating in the podcast world. This summer we are moving our Los Angeles location to a bigger venue and have some fun things up our sleeves we’re excited to show everyone. You just gotta keep your eyes peeled because we are pushing our limits and are ready to level up as a company. We just upgraded all of our studio tech and our engineers are some of the coolest and hardest working people you will meet. Third Wheel from the top to bottom is something I couldn’t be more proud of.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Ok, I am still newish to Los Angeles but this is what I do for my friends when they come to town.
First I pick them up from the airport and then second they sit in my car I hand them a joint. Or drink or whatever your vice is. Coffee, whatever. Next we drive to get some fried chicken and go to a park with a dope view to eat the chicken (Jesse Boy or Howlin’ Ray’s) and catch up a bit. Now that we’re not hungry we hit a driving range or one of the arcades in town. Castle Park is so rad and has mini golf and the Two Bit Circus is super fun. VR is a must there. I have season passes for Six Flags and Universal so we would for sure go there but that’s a day in itself. Love to golf so if they are golfers we would hit one of the many badass courses here. I go to Vista Valencia in Santa Clarita a lot bc its cheap, beautiful and never too crowded. Comedy clubs here are great too. The Comedy Store is a must go to and when you’re in the area also drop into the Hollywood Improv. Both fantastic clubs with unreal funny comics always working there. I also love live sports and LA has it all. Lakers games are expensive but you can always get into a Clippers game for about 20 bucks or less and at halftime sneak down to the empty seats down below. I have been 7 rows back watching Damian Lillard play vs the Clippers and I got in for 16 bucks. Hollywood bowl is dope but there are so many unreal venues around the city for music but that’s a whole other list. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Shoutout to my business partner’s wife Betsi. Without her, our business would honestly be so illegal and probably not profitable at all. She’s the glue that holds it all together and makes sure that we stay out of jail.
Andrew Max Levy