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Hi, I’m Brad Feld, a managing director at the Foundry Group who lives in Boulder, Colorado. I invest in software and Internet companies around the US, run marathons and read a lot.

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My First Known Interview – Age 4

Comments (33)

We’ve all got to start somewhere.

Over the weekend my mom gave me a CD with the recording of my first known live interview. I’ve tossed it up on SoundCloud for your listening pleasure.

This recording was done by KERA, our Dallas-based public radio and TV station when I was four. It was for a video segment on a painting I had done that showed on Channel 13 (our public TV station.) My mom hasn’t been able to find the video so the audio will have to do.

While Amy and I listened to it, we made a bunch of observations over the 15 minute segment.

  • At age 4, I had my dad’s NY accent. Even though we were living in Dallas, my accent hadn’t been neutralized yet.
  • My OCD tendencies were painfully apparent in how I described things, especially the lines and dots.
  • I was very clear that I liked watching cartoons on Saturday – and this was on Friday. Amy was impressed that I knew the days of the week so clearly at this age.
  • I didn’t like to physically fight. I still don’t like to physically fight, but I’m not afraid of battle.
  • My brain was racing. I described it as being like a motorboat. I have no idea where the motorboat metaphor came from.
  • Even at age four, numbers had personalities for me. They still do – I love numbers. Especially prime ones.
  • All the dark colors were my favorite colors, which is still true today.

Thanks mom for digging this up. And for being a great mom.

  • http://bulanetwork.com/ Randy Cantrell

    Excellent. KERA has never been the same.

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Whenever I hear NPR or “public radio” I still think of KERA as the call letters.

  • http://bsoi.st/ bsoist

    any chance we can see the painting?

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Long lost – well before digital photos… It might surface in an attic someday.

  • http://bsoi.st/ bsoist

    I purposely didn’t read your list before listening and one of the first things I thought was how your mind seemed to be racing. I didn’t think of the motorboat until you said it, but that’s about what I was thinking. :)

    Are there people who don’t love prime numbers?

  • megansweeney

    This is too cute! I love when you say I’m Bradley Feld and I’m 4 years old. This just makes me want to film Liam allllll weekend.

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Awwwww. And that sounds like a good plan.

  • http://avc.com fredwilson

    do you still paint Brad?

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      No. I don’t remember when I lost interest, but it was probably before I was 10. My mom continually encouraged my creativity, but she was a wise mom not to push me to hard to follow in her artist footsteps.

      • http://www.pointsandfigures.com/ pointsnfigures

        you should start again. You and Winston Churchill.

  • http://avc.com fredwilson

    “i’m not three years old. i’m four!!”

    omg. such outrage. so great.

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Yeah – that appeared to matter to me A LOT. Now that I’m 48, not so much, but you’ve heard my outrage at incorrect facts in other context and I probably sound the same as I did at 4.

  • Josh Larrabee

    Thanks for posting. For those of us with youg ones, this is an inspiration. Be sure to tell your mother thank you as well…the foresight of recording and saving something like this is amazing prior to the YouTube/SoundCloud era.

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Take lots of pictures, record lots of movies.

  • http://www.miller-gold.com/ Jonathan C. Miller

    I also like prime numbers. I always set the volume on the a/v to prime numbers ;-)

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      I occasionally get stuck (OCD stuck – like I have to wait) when the clock is not on a prime number for minutes.

  • http://www.gothamgal.com Gotham Gal

    So great. What speaks loud and clear is that even at a young age we are the same at 48. A little wiser perhaps but honestly the same insight and intellect. Love this!

  • Dave Linhardt

    Big 8 is most likely to win, but victory is not guaranteed. Sometimes, it’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog. Either way, you were an adorable kid.

    • Dave Linhardt

      …and numbers are still fighting for you from time to time, aren’t they?

      • http://www.feld.com bfeld

        All the time.

  • Jonathan Fields

    Love the comment about the skyscrapers and the glue. Don’t want to glue the blocks, because you “have to make all kinds of skyscrapers.” More than a little foreshadowing.

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Good catch.

  • Cecelia Feld

    You’re welcome. Love you! 1969 – Brad Feld age 4, first year in Dallas. I also remember The 5th Dimension’s “Age of Aquariius”, big that year.

  • http://www.betterpointment.com/ Rich Weisberger

    “I can’t remember” Strait talk/ no BS started at a young age for Brad Feld.

  • http://www.elastera.com Ossy

    I hear a passionate and dreamer kid. Nice one!

  • Emcye

    But wait, there’s more…the interviewer’s Twilight Zone manner of speaking, so popular then, full of a certain kind of exhilaration you really won’t hear today… your battle of numbers and letters… such a window into a child’s keen perception of meta-realities. I ‘betcha’ any conversation w 4 yr old Picasso or Beethoven never produced such an incisive overview of their oeuvre during the creative periods age 2-4. Now, Bradley, how about an update? Do you still paint? Do you have a motorboat? Do you have a tin snipper…(or is this a new app in dev?) If not, why not? Synesthesia rocks, see-ay?

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Paint: Nope – stopped around 10.
      Motorboat: Nope – I dislike boats. But my brain still races like a motorboat.
      Tin Snipper: I didn’t think of that world again (since I was four) until I heard this interview!

  • Steve Bell

    Brad I’m trying to compare what you were saying in this interview, with my first interview with you in Boulder to determine in which one you are on your A-Game:):

    • http://www.feld.com bfeld

      Cute. I was probably better at 4…

      • Steve Bell

        It’s truly remarkable how people’s personalities are set by age 4. I think about my 11-year old Son and 13-year old daughter like they are still kids, but hey by age 4 a lot of things are “set in stone” — for better or for worse. I vaguely remember my Psych 101 Professor, Dr. Pronko at Wichita State Univ., trying to drill that into us… what do they call it? I think it’s called the operative vs environmental debate. Anyway, clearly DNA and early upbringing both play a huge role in how we turn out.

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