ND Gov. Doug Burgum (left), Lt. Gov Brent Sanford (right) and multimedia journalist Jason Spiess (middle) at the 2017 Bakken Conference.

About The Crude Life 

Simply put, we are creators of content, storytellers of news and features with a vast traditional and digital distribution platforms.

The Crude Life began when entrepreneur and media personality Jason Spiess began covering the Bakken oil boom full time in March 2012.  The first nine months, Spiess operated The Crude Life while living and operating the business in an RV.  The method-journalism approach not only allowed Spiess to embed all the idiosyncracies of the Bakken Boom, but interview once-in-a-lifetime newsmakers and personalities.

Ever since principal owner Jason Spiess spent his childhood delivering newspapers for The Forum of Fargo Moorhead, he understood the importance of a quality distribution system.  Because of this committment to a balanced distribution system, The Crude Life is constantly searching for opportunities in both new and existing features repurposing content – both domestically and internationally.

One of the more unique aspects of The Crude Life content is that it steers clear of polarizing politics.   There is so much happening in the world of innovation, community building, economic development, workforce education, safety and quality of life increasements, that The Crude Life chooses to focus on those compelling threads of stories.

The Crude Life’s interviews are exclusive and feature stories are original, which are consistently picked up by a variety of newspapers, magazines, radio stations and online news portals.

About MultiMedia Journalist Jason Spiess

Jason Spiess is a multimedia journalist, entrepreneur and content consultant. Spiess has over 25 years of media experience in broadcasting, journalism, reporting and principal ownership in media companies.  (Over 30 years experience if you count his adolescent years as a newspaper delivery boy learning the importance and logistics of daily distribution and monthly door-to-door bill collecting.)

Spiess has worked in the areas of oil and gas, UAS and precision agriculture, health care, cannabis, agriculture, real estate, government affairs and economic development. Spiess is the host of two radio programs, Building the Bakken and Coffee & Capitalism, and three specialty short programs, MonDak OilField Review, Corporate Ink and UnStuck, that carry a radio network that spans five states and two countries, as well as worldwide through iTunes and PodOmatic.

In addition to his radio programs, Spiess is a regular contributor to the Bismarck Tribune’s Bakken Breakout Weekly and Bakken Breakout Magazine. He also has also been published by Basin Bits, The Oilman Magazine, Oil and Gas Monthly, Bakken Business Oil Journal, The Dickinson Press and many other industry publications and newspapers.

Spiess has also worked as a guest correspondent for a number of local and global news organizations from 660 KEYZ-AM Williston to CNBC to the BBC World.

Spiess engages in one-on-one, in-depth conversations and round-table discussions that center around topics that impact communities and culture. His non-political approach to subjects and non-polarizing discourse, provide the venue for an intelligent conversation.

Spiess has interviewed hundreds of extraordinary men and women of science, politics, art, business, sports, technology, literature and entertainment. These conversations are truly one-of-a-kind, often infused with humor, emotion, intelligence, and passion.

Spiess is a North Dakota native and graduated from North Dakota State University.

Tech billionaire Rob Ryan (left) answers a question from multimedia journalist Jason Spiess in Jackson Hole, Wy. Ryan was founder, past chairman and CEO of Ascend Communications, and currently mentors entrepreneurs through his Entrepreneur America Mentors’ bootcamps at his ranch in Montana. Photo by Kevin Tobosa

Building the Baken is a brand dedicated to the evolution of the Bakken shale play and the communities in Western North Dakota. Building the Bakken is the most trusted energy news brand in the Bakken today. Building the Bakken is not a political program, rather an informational brand. No polarizing talk, just conversations about the facts of the energy industry.  From oil companies to cafe owners to law makers, Building the Bakken host Jason Spiess interviews a variety of individuals who live and work in Shale Play USA.


Coffee & Capitalism is a brand surround the roots and principals of capitalism. Host Jason Spiess travels the United States interviewing small business owners, CEOs, economic developers, policy makers and mentors about making money and giving back to your community.


The MonDak OilField Review is a daily program focusing on the oil and gas activity of the Bakken shale play.  Host Jason Spiess interviews everyone from roughnecks to local residents to business owners.


UnStuck is for those who are stuck in their daily routine.  UnStuck talks to experts who understand how to get out of that rut we all get in sometimes.  From mentors to motivational speakers to professionals, UnStuck is the weekly jolt many need.  COMING FALL 2018



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