Entertainers and Musicians Ezra and Adeev Potash aka “The Potash Twins” — Everything is a learning experience and every opportunity gets you a little bit closer to the career you have envisioned!
I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing The Potash Twins.
Labeled by NPR as the “Twin Horns of Joy“, Adeev and Ezra Potash are musicians, entertainers and the hosts of Food Network’s show “The Takeout Twins” (from Executive Producer Andrew Zimmern). Previously, The Potash Twins hosted Bravo TV’s “Beats + Bites” as well as Travel Channel‘s “Southern Road Trip with The Potash Twins”. Their 2015 release entitled “The Potash Twins” reached #9 on the iTunes Jazz Charts (produced by Steven Greenberg, writer/producer of “Funkytown“).
Guided at an early age by jazz legend Wynton Marsalis, the twins were inspired to pursue a career in the performance of jazz. Upon graduating high school in Nebraska, the twins moved to New York City to develop their skills. Adeev studied under the Dizzy Gillespie protégé Jon Faddis at SUNY Purchase, while Ezra received a full ride scholarship to Manhattan School of Music on Bass Trombone.
The twins have performed around the world at notable venues such as Jazz at Lincoln Center, Birdland, Ginny’s Supper Club (at Red Rooster NYC), The Grandstand of the Minnesota State Fair, First Avenue, The Dakota, The Fillmore (Silver Spring, MD) and The Field Museum (Chicago). They have performed at several festivals including Lollapalooza, South By Southwest (SXSW), Hard Fest, and Summerfest Milwaukee where they opened for music legend Joe Jackson. They have also performed on several occasions for Warren Buffet’s Annual Shareholder’s Meeting. Ezra and Adeev have garnered a large following in Asia, due to their participation on a nationally televised competition show in China, where they received 2nd place. Their music can
even be heard at the Loews Hotel in New Orleans, the birthplace of jazz. In June 2020, The Potash Twins were guests on John Legend produced, “Sherman’s Showcase.”
Ezra and Adeev were named one of the “15 Most Stylish Twins on Instagram” by the Huffington Post. The twins also delivered a TEDtalk, and have been
featured/appeared in NPR, Us Weekly, Top Chef (Bravo TV), BravoTV.com, Town & Country Magazine, VH1, Food & Wine Magazine, Vanity Fair, Complex Magazine, Hypebeast, WGN TV, Deadline Hollywood, The Miami Herald, Barstool Sports, Tunecore, Sirius XM Radio (The Dave Koz Lounge), Menswear Style Magazine, Denver Magazine, The Current, Omaha Magazine and many more. The Potash Twins were featured on American Express’ social platforms to help launch their “Shop Small Offer.”
Named the “Musicians of the Food World” by the Miami Herald, with a passion for food and the culinary community, the twins have become well known in the food scene by chefs and foodies alike. They have performed around the country at events including:
Food Network and Cooking Channel’s South Beach Food and Wine Festival, The James Beard Leadership Awards, Aspen Food & Wine Festival, Toronto Food and Wine Festival, Palm Beach Food and Wine (including Chef Daniel Boulud’s infamous Sunday brunch at Cafe Boulud), Chicago Gourmet, the opening of Chef Gavin Kaysen’s Spoon and Stable and at legendary Chef Rick Bayless’ James Beard Awards after-party.
Ezra and Adeev hope to use their relationships to spread jazz to a wider audience. As a part of their ongoing efforts to increase the awareness of jazz and live performance, the Potash Twins served as Artistic Directors at the Love’s Jazz and Arts Center in the historic jazz district of North Omaha.
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?
We grew up in Omaha, Nebraska! It was incredible place to be a young artist because so many amazing musicians would tour and stop through town. It’s just a big enough city where pretty much every tour stops there but small enough that when an artist would perform there were a ton of opportunities to interact and even sometimes perform alongside them.
Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?
This is a long story but I will paraphrase for you! When we were 15 years old, Wynton Marsalis came to town and we somehow ended up in the green room and we had our horns with us, so we asked if we could play for him. He gave us over an hour of his time, jammed together and learned a lifetimes worth of knowledge that night. He’s the most sincere, humble and brilliant human being who has turned into a great friend and mentor that we will cherish forever.
Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?
Being the musicians of the food world has had its perks. Pre-COVID, Guy Fieri was getting his star on the walk of fame and we performed with Bret Michaels for the party. Little did we know that Diplo was there and he invited us to join him on tour with him and Major Lazer!
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?
We are very excited to be partnering with Gardein! A company that has been innovating the plant based space for so many years. It has been a blast to come up with fun recipes to share with everybody and try to encourage more people to swap their favorite meat meals for a plant based alternative.
You have been blessed with success in a career path that can be challenging. Do you have any words of advice for others who may want to embark on this career path, but seem daunted by the prospect of failure?
Everything is a learning experience and every opportunity gets you a little bit closer to the career you have envisioned! An overnight sensation takes ten years to build!
We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?
We are all on this planet together and we all have something to learn from each other. Learning about other cultures through music and food has been the driving factor for what we do and why we do it.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
1. Practice more than you think!
2. Get out there! No one can hear you from your practice room.
3. You have a unique story to tell, find the best way to tell it.
4. Say yes to most things! Use “no” sparingly.
5. Keep your head down and keep working!
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
Find hobbies that you enjoy and make time for them! Get outside and do something in nature it will propel you and your work.
You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)
Travel! Get out of your comfort zone, that is where the best experiences have been for us.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There are so many people who have gone out of their way to help us achieve what we have set out to do and I can’t thank all of them. Wynton Marsalis, Andrew Zimmern and Terry Crews have always always always been there to guide and mentor us through everything and we will never be able to thank them for changing our lives.
Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. :-)
Kamasi Washington is one of our favorite artists and big inspiration!
How can our readers follow you online?
@potashtwins on Instagram!
This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success! Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?