Recap of Season 2 on Episode 104


It’s been an awesome two years of podcasting at Conversations of Big Rich. In this episode, we share the stats and some highlights.

102 guests: 91 men, 11 women
8114 minutes of content
52,000 downloads with over 4 million minutes listened to

Episodes mentioned:

Bob Bower – Episode 5556

Jack Bettio – Episode 75

Emily Miller – Episode 29

Larry McRae – Episode 15

Rob Bender Park – Episode 8

Charlie Melchner – Episode 4

Then enjoy a replay of Episode #1

Be sure to SUBSCRIBE to Conversations with Big Rich on your favorite Podcast Player


The first, the pillar episode of the Big Rich podcast is live! In this episode Shelley interviews Big Rich about the beginning of rock crawling for him. It’s a perseverance story, a succeed at all costs, a bootstrapping, I want this so bad, I’ll do whatever it takes.  Almost twenty years later, WE Rock is still strong. Come along for the journey, see where it all began.

Season 1, Episode 1 with Big Rich Klein

7:20 Who yells “What’s the name of your club?” to guys he’s never met before?

16:56 Cease and desist ordered delivered at his very first rock crawl

24:32 You want how much money? How a county judge helped us out.

30:13 Why we needed a ‘Noise Study’ at a gun range

33:39 The penalty for being trashy

42:32 The birth of WE Rock, but not without some controversy

52:31 No sleeves allowed! Reno Rocks is off the hook

54:31  Debacle in Farmington 2009

64:39 The Taj Mahauler lives

74:36 Dirt Riot is born

82:44  2020 begins, here’s what it looks like

85:34 How 4Low Magazine comes with 20 years of plans

92:14 The history of off-road and why it matters



00:00:00.610] – Big Rich Klein

Welcome to Conversations with Big Rich. This is a special episode for us. It’s episode 104. That’s two years of weekly releases. We’re going to do things a little differently with this one. As you can tell, there was no intro music, but we are going to talk about some of the guests that we’ve had on and some of the stats that we’ve had and just kind of go over general what Conversations with Big Rich has been all about. There is a special on the end of this. This part will only be a few minutes, and then we’re going to replay the original episode. And that’s the conversation with me that Shelley asked me the questions instead of me asking my own questions. And so we’d really like to encourage everybody to take the time, listen to not only the people that you know, but also to those that you don’t know, maybe somebody you’ve heard of, but you don’t really know them. You haven’t met them. All of the guests that we’ve had on here have had a very interesting life. We all have. The one thing in common is off road, whether it’s rock sports or it’s off road racing, it’s the love of motorsports off road.


[00:01:22.850] – Big Rich Klein

With this episode being 104, that’s 102 guests. That’s 103 weeks. The ages of our guests have ranged from 30 to 85. We’ve had eleven women, 91 men; over 80% are business owners. Let’s see, we’ve had 8112 minutes of content, five times of that prep. Yes, Shelley, these things don’t just happen live and we put them on the air. I edit the conversation. We clean up some of the vocabulary or take some things out that aren’t necessary. Do a lot of editing on my own voice because I sometimes talk like a blithering idiot and it works out to 135 hours, over 4 million minutes listened to, that’s eight years of time. We really appreciate that. We have approximately I think it’s like over 52,000 downloads now, which is very nice. We have a few episodes that are over a thousand. We are a small niche market, but we hope you enjoy what we’re bringing to you. Remember, it’s the history of offroad of those that live the lifestyle. In April for our third season, we will be releasing on YouTube, as well as all of the podcast services that are available. I’ve picked out a couple of my favorite episodes, and it’s not so much because of the people that I interviewed, but more about the content and who that person was.


[00:03:11.990] – Big Rich Klein

I’ve got a lot of friends I’ve interviewed on here. I’ve got a few people that I didn’t know, and we interviewed. I really thought it would be easier just to interview people I know, but it’s been just as easy to interview people I’ve never met. It’s amazing how people have opened up and allowed me into their lives, which in course allows you into their lives. One of my favorite episodes was with Bob Bower. That’s Baja Bob Bower, we needed two episodes just to get his word out there. And I probably could have talked to him for another five or 6 hours. But we wanted to make it realistic. So we talked to Bob two absolutely fantastic episodes. The background in history that he has and what he has done for off road racing and for rock crawling that many people don’t know is amazing. Without Bob Bower, we wouldn’t have that famous letter to being safe in what it means to be safe in Baja. We also wouldn’t have a lot of the safety standards that are set now in rock crawling. He’s the one that forced me. Bob Bower was the one that asked me to bring safety to the forefront in rock crawling.


[00:04:40.910] – Big Rich Klein

He said, you got to have the guys in fire suits, you got to have window nets, you got to have fire extinguishers, you got to have helmets, you got to have the right harnesses. Those things were very important to him and in turn very important to us to get to you guys. There was a fear at one time that if we did that, we would lose drivers, meaning drivers would go away. They didn’t want to spend the money for safety. And we found that’s really not the case. And we appreciate everybody for stepping up and being safe. Bob Bower’s episodes are number 55 and 56, by the way, if you wish to listen to those and you haven’t. Jack Bettio is another competitor conversation that I had. He was probably the oldest rock crawler at this point. Now he’s not rock crawling anymore, but that put him probably at the high end of the spectrum at that point when he was crawling. In the early days, I learned a lot about Jack. From drag racing to piloting to business. His episode was number 75. Jack was a big influence on the East Coast, Wheeling. And a lot of guys learned a lot of things from Jack on everything from sponsorship to just putting your nose to the grindstone and getting stuff done.


[00:06:02.090] – Big Rich Klein

Episode number 29 is a special Lady, Emily Miller. Emily brought the US a woman’s event called the Rebelle Rally, which actually is our favorite event to attend. As staff, we willingly go out, spend twelve days with a great group of people and drive all over Nevada and California to help with this all women’s navigational rally. No electronics, nothing but map and compass the maps that they have. Don’t have cities on them. They have landmarks like the mountains and the Rivers. Typical topographical map, but without the cities. So the whole time that they’re out there, they’re turned off from their electronics. They have no cell service. They are doing everything from map and Compass to get from point A to point B, which can be somewhere around up to 2200 km. I think was the longest one over eight days of competition. It’s absolutely a phenomenal life changing event. And I encourage all the men out there that are listening to get their wives, girlfriends, significant others, or somebody in their business involved with the Rebelle Rally. I first met Emily Miller when she was racing for Rod Hall in the early 2000s. Was racing with Rod and part of his Rod Hall Hummer experiences.


[00:07:37.370] – Big Rich Klein

And just an outstanding woman and super strong. You look at her.


[00:07:45.040] – Big Rich Klein

She’S this tiny little thing and she is just a whirlwind. She gets stuff done. And she’s been doing the KOH media for a number of years now and is just absolutely fantastic in everything that she’s done. Number 15, episode 15 was Larry McRae. Larry has overcome a lot of things in his life and overcome them all and made it to the other side. Everything from health, health issues, business acumen, and learning what it takes to get stuff done. Another one of those that just won’t quit. Episode number eight is Rob Bender Park. Yes, I know Bender. If you listen to this episode, you’re going to know Bender. Rob Park is always the showman. He is a fantastic fabricator and just a great mind and a great guy. One you should listen to. I think the easiest episode in conversation that I ever had with anybody was my good time old friend Charlie Melchner. Episode number four. Typically, I’ll ask questions during the interview and try to get information out of somebody to get them to tell a story or a situation that happened during their lifetime. Charlie. I asked one question. That one question was where were you born and raised?


[00:09:25.010] – Big Rich Klein

And from there I learned all about Charlie in chronological order. And I don’t think I got another word in until I said goodbye. Charlie is a phenomenal Wheeler. A great guy will help anybody, and he’s bringing up the next generation of rock crawlers with his son, little Charlie. There are so many more that have made an impact in my life after doing these interviews that I really hope that everybody takes the time to listen to all of the interviews. I know that’s a lot of work, a lot of time. But you know what? Every time you drive, start it up from where you finished it off the last time. If you’re sitting around the house and you’re watching TV and it’s some dumb show like the Academy Awards or something, turn that off and learn something about the history of offroad and rock sports. Motor sports. All of these conversations have had moments where I would like to call jaw dropping, eye opening surprises that I didn’t know about the people that I’m interviewing, even though I may have known these people for decades. I have a really long list. I mean, we’ve done 102 guests.


[00:10:46.370] – Big Rich Klein

I have another 200 to 300 on my list of people I want to get to. And every week I meet somebody new or somebody recommends somebody else trying to hunt down some of these people has been pretty difficult that are still on the list. That’s why I haven’t interviewed them yet. There are some great names from the past, but if you have any recommendations that you would like to throw at us, please send me an email, drop me a text, let me know on Facebook and we can try to hunt those people down. And better yet, if you have their contact information, provide that as well. So hang on, start at the beginning again or get your friends to listen and enjoy conversations with Big Rich thank you.    READ MORE

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