|Location||Ball Ground, Georgia|
|Production Occupation||Host / Producer|
Austin Blankenship is the current owner and webmaster of the Expanded Universe website, EUCantina.net, and the founder of the Star Wars podcast family, Solo Sound. He is also the host of EUCast, a Star Wars Expanded Universe podcast that serves as the official podcast of EUCantina.net. Blankenship has been a member of the fan audio community for three years.
EUCantina.net and EUCastEdit
In 2007, Blankenship became the webmaster and owner of EUCantina.net, partnering with Andrew Lupi to turn a forum called "The EU Cantina" into a full Expanded Universe website. The website has quickly became a success, becoming one of the top Star Wars fansites for EU news. EUCantina hosts interviews, guides, opinion columns, and forums. They are consistently one of the first websites to report any EU news; an aspect that they have gained a solid reputation for. EUCantina made its first convention appearance at Star Wars Celebration V, where it organized the Star Wars: The Essential Atlas panel with the authors and artists who created the book. Blankenship continues to work as the webmaster of EUCantina, posting news, running the social media, and updating the website. His partnership with Lupi continues to last, as they hold management positions on the fansite.
When EUCantina.net was launched, Blankenship felt a podcast was essential. There were few expanded universe podcasts currently airing, and he felt that a EU podcast had to accompany an EU website. Blankenship joined with Lupi and Lawrence Davis to start EUCast in 2007. The trio of hosts won the award for Best Panel of Hosts (tying with Anomaly) in the 2009 Fan Audio Awards. The podcast has seen several different hosts over the last three years. Blankenship was the host and producer of EUCast for nearly three years, but took a brief leave from the show in the summer of 2010. In August 2010, he returned as the host and producer of EUCast.
Build Up to Solo SoundEdit
When The Clone Wars television show premiered in the fall of 2008, Blankenship started We Talk Clones, a podcast that would review each episode of The Clone Wars. Blankenship named Tom Pniewski and Stephen Rice as the hosts of the podcasts, with Tom serving as the producer. The podcast was hosted on a free server called Podbean, but with limited space. EUCantina.net could only host one podcast. In January 2010, former EUCast host Andrew Lupi, along with founder of Star Wars Fanworks, Nathan P. Butler, started The EU Review, a third podcast associated with EUCantina.net. It was obvious that a new website would be needed that could host and produce the three Star Wars podcasts.
Solo Sound LaunchesEdit
In January of 2010, Blankenship founded Solo Sound, a production unit meant to produce multiple Star Wars podcasts, with a website (Solosound.net) to host the episodes. Solo Sound consisted of EUCast, We Talk Clones, The EU Review. Three additional podcasts have been added since January, 2010; Cantina Commentaries, Star Wars Nation, and The Bothan Report. Production of Star Wars Nation has now ceased. Solo Sound produces five Star Wars podcasts with a combined total of ten hosts. An average of three new episodes from the various podcasts are released each week on Solosound.net.