The centralamerica.com Podcast: Lawrence Cohen, the Expat Musician in Costa Rica

Mar 25, 2021

The seventh episode of the centralamerica.com podcast, where we speak to Lawrence Cohen in Heredia, Costa Rica. Today we talk music, live gigging, and making fresh starts when things aren’t going right.

You might know this already by now, but we’ve jumped on the bandwagon and started a podcast.

The idea is to talk to interesting people in Central America doing interesting stuff, whether they’re a local, an expat, or a visitor.

In this latest episode, we speak to saxophone player Lawrence Cohen in Heredia, Costa Rica.

Lawrence is an old friend, and I enjoyed chatting with him today. Prinicipally, I invited him on to plug his upcoing gig with The Posion Dart Frogs, a blues, rockabilly, and boogie band made of expat gringos in Costa Rica. 

The idea was, after a year of absolute decimation of the music and entertainment business in Costa Rica (and all over the world), to welcome back some semblance of normality by promoting some live music.

Before moving to Costa Rica in April 2019, Lawrence worked in New York as a teacher and gigging sax player. 

We talk about the band, but we also talk a lot about how Lawrence came to find Costa Rica in the first place, and how Costa Rica changed his life. 

Lawrence came to Costa Rica after losing his job in the US. He traveled around Latin America for a while, checking out different countries. One day, he realized that if he sold his house, he could move abroad and create a new life for himself. After exploring Ecuador, Guatemala, and a few other potential homes, he realized Costa Rica was where he felt most at home.

He freely admits that when he came to Costa Rica, he was lost, in a bit of a funk, seaching for something. Two years later, he’s settled, happy, and married to a wonderful woman.

We talk a lot about the path he took, and the decisions we all take in life to either find ourselves on the right foot or the wrong foot. Oh, and Lawrence gives us a quick blast of his saxophone skills at the end.

This podcast doesn’t have a real theme to it.

It’s more like two friends shooting the breeze. If there is a theme, I guess it would be one of hope. 

Anyone who feels that their life isn’t working out for them where they are, and/or are wondering if the grass could possibly be greener elsewhere, might find our chat a worthwhile listen. We hope you enjoy it.

If you’re in Costa Rica, especially if you’re in or around Atenas, the Poison Dart Frogs will be playing at La Terraza Restaurante & Pizzería from 4:00 PM on Saturday, March 27, 2021. 

Check out Lawrence’s YouTube channel to see The Poison Dart Frogs and some of his sax playing over the years.

Please find the podcast at the top of this page and again below in audio format.

This week, we’re forgoing our own YouTube embed to make way for The Poison Dart Frogs in action.

That said, if you want to watch our chat on YouTube, feel free to do so. This converation is also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and other podcast providers. Feel free to follow us on any of these platforms.

Related:

  1. Nicholas Corea from The Bocas Breeze in Bocas del Toro, Panama
  2. Rob Stirr, “The Sausage Guy” in Costa Rica
  3. Aaron Atkey – Chef, Restaurateur, Fisherman, Surfer, and All-Round Facilitator/Nice Guy in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica
  4. Talking COVID in Guatemala with Nestor Quixtan
  5. Keara Mahoney in Bocas del Toro, Panama 
  6. The centralamerica.com Podcast: Responsible Hiring in Costa Rica for Expats 
  7. Lawrence Cohen, the Expat Musician in Costa Rica (this page)

James Dyde is the editor of centralamerica.com. He lives in Escazu, Costa Rica.