Coming from Cresskill, New Jersey and Cairo, Egypt, Sophia Cumella and Titus Oldham’s paths first intersected at Temple’s 2019 convocation.
Despite their different backgrounds, the two struck a conversation about their shared love for music.
Six months later, Cumella and Oldham, freshman film and media arts majors, created “Tunes for 2” a podcast that covers popular music topics, from Grammy predictions to album reviews. So far, they have produced 10 hour-long episodes available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and YouTube.
“We brought it up around friends, and they didn’t think it would actually go through,” Oldham said. “We didn’t even trust each other to go through with it at first.”
In October 2019, they began recording their podcast in the TECH Center’s breakout rooms but have since started to record at the Charles Library.
Josh Afiriyie, a freshman film major, regularly listens to the podcast and is close friends with Cumella and Oldham.
“I just like never thought it would reach this point, it’s just like inspiring in a way because like that’s my friends and they were able to do that and make it that far,” Afiriyie added. “I wholeheartedly, with like every ounce of my body, believe in them. I want to push them like as much as I can.”
Afiriyie also appeared as the podcast’s first-ever guest, where the three discussed Kanye West’s newest album, “Jesus is King.”
“It was definitely really nerve-racking just because I’ve never been in an environment like that and also like I didn’t want to like not perform well, even though it’s not a performance I wanted to like do good for them,” Afiriyie said. “But I was excited to be on there just to support them.”
Lysia Mogford, a freshman theater major and the podcast’s most recent guest, believes Tunes for 2 will give more students inspiration to start projects they are passionate about, she said.
“It’s definitely a little bit inspiring, in a way that it doesn’t really matter where you are or what your situations are, that you are still able to create something in a very artistic way,” Mogford added.
Previously, Cumella and Oldham had minimal experience with creating podcasts and recording audio, mostly only creating unreleased podcast episodes with friends and siblings, they said.
“We would sit down in front of the microphones for the first episodes and be like ‘How do we even start?’” Oldham said.
Now the podcast is gaining attention, with their “Grammy’s Prediction” podcast getting more than 150 views on YouTube. They debuted merchandise on RedBubble, an online marketplace, where they sell 36 variations of Tunes for 2 products like drawstring bags, throw pillows and hoodies.
Not all of the feedback they receive is positive, Cumella said.
“We got a lot of views, but we also got our first quote-on-quote ‘hate comments’ from like die-hard Ariana Grande fans,” Oldham added.
The pair aren’t worried about the negative comments, instead, they’re excited about them because it means they’re being recognized, Cumella said.
“We were like celebrating our first dislike,” Oldham said.
Both want to continue creating the show while students, and even afterward, Cumella said.
“I made a 25-year plan for Tunes for 2,” she added. “It’s part joke, part serious.”