Podcasts

I grew up listening to talk radio with my dad – lots of NPR and conservative shows. I’ve shed the conservative talk shows, but have continued to love talk radio. Here are some great podcasts well worth your time.

  • 99% Invisible
  • A Murder on Orchard Street
  • Chapo Trap House I was relatively late to the Trap House, but I love this show. Part transgressive leftist politics and part Stern Show, this podcast (and the Patreon supported Grey Wolf Feed) is definitely worth listening to, Mr. Chapo.
  • Citations Needed If On the Media is the neoliberal media criticism podcast, then Citations Needed is the leftist media criticism podcast. Hosted by Nima Shirazi and Adam Johnson, this show criticizes the media from an actual leftist perspective with interesting guests. I highly recommend it.
  • Crimetown Crimetown is one of the best crime shows. It maintains the high production value like all other Gimlet shows. The first season uncovers the Mafia influence in Providence, Rhode Island in the late 70’s and early 80’s. Like most people, I normally associate Mafia activity with New York, New Jersey, and Chicago, but Providence has an amazing backstory that deserves a telling.
  • Criminal Phoebe Judge hosts Criminal, a periodic podcast about lawbreakers. Criminal isn’t usually about hardcore crimes, but unusual crimes and the criminals that commit them. For example, one recent episode was about William and Ellen Craft, two slaves who used cunning and courage to escape slavery. They were technically criminals at the time, but what they did and the way they did it is worth the listen alone. Plus, Phoebe Judge’s voice.
  • Dirty John An excellent true crime podcast that you can easily get through in a single day (I did, it’s only six episodes).
  • On The Media And this weeks episode was edited by … Brooke.
  • Ear Hustle Hear what it’s like on the inside of a maximum security prison from the inmates incarcerated there.
  • Embedded
  • Full Stack Radio
  • Guys We Fucked The anti-slut shaming podcast. Hilarious, excellent show that discusses sexuality, LGBTQ issues, and has interesting guests.
  • Heavyweight I’m having trouble describing how great Heavyweight is. Start at Season 1 Episode 1 and listen from there about life’s missed connections.
  • HEAVYxMEDICAL What’s not to love about leftist healthcare and heavy metal? Tim Faust and Kelly Jo discuss the politics of healthcare and heavy metal. I hope we get more shows in 2018.
  • Homecoming Gimlet is a fictional podcast based on a comic book, sorry, graphic novel, with some big names as the voice actors behind it. The seasons are relatively short (six episodes each) and each episode is usually twenty-five minutes or less, so it’s very easy to binge on. You really get attached to the characters, and the story telling is excellent.
  • How Did This Get Made
  • In The Dark This show is really what got me interested in listening to podcasts. Yes, I listened to Season 1 of Serial, and had listened to an occasional This American Life episode, but In The Dark was amazingly well done, gripping, and had a conclusion! The first season of In The Dark covers a 27 year old unsolved child abduction (the case was solved several weeks before the podcast was released), but is ultimately about something much different. Definitely worth your time.
  • Invisibilia
  • Missing Richard Simmons
  • My Favorite Murder True crime, but retold by two actresses/comedians from LA. Their live shows are amazing, and Stay Sexy and Don’t Get Murdered!
  • The Pitch You can think of The Pitch as the podcast version of Shark Tank. Entrepreneurs pitch venture capitalists with their startups. Each episode is interesting, and one in particular has highlighted how awful a human being James Altucher is.
  • Planet Money
  • Radiolab
  • Radiolab Presents: More Perfect
  • Reply All I grew up on the Internet and love what it’s added to my life. Reply All is a Gimlet Media produced podcast about the Internet and it’s oddities and intricacies. This is the first podcast that I binged on, and it continues to be great.
  • Reveal I first heard an episode of Reveal on the NPR show Marketplace. The episode detailed the generally unknown story of cash assistance in America – TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or “welfare”) – and how little of it actually benefits needy families. Reveal does hard hitting journalism, like uncovering sexual abuse, and the coverups, in the Jehova’s Witness churches in America. Many episodes will upset you, but will hopefully drive you to action.
  • S-Town
  • Someone Knows Something
  • Sound of Symfony
  • StartUp Podcast
  • Sworn
  • This American Life Isn’t this the podcast everyone adds first?
  • Uncivil I’ve learned more about the Civil War (and the myths surrounding it) from this podcast more than any time spent in a history class.
  • Up and Vanished I wanted to get into more true crime podcasts, so I gave UaV a shot. I have conflicting feelings about the show. A former beauty queen goes missing, and then twelve years later two guys (with oddly similar names) are arrested and one is charged in her murder. The arrest happens in the middle of the podcast, but because there hasn’t been a trial, there’s really nothing further to discuss. The podcast does drag on in places, so be prepared for some fast forwarding, and at this point it seems like the podcast has become bigger than the crime it reported on.
  • Voices of the ElePHPant
  • Your Mom’s House I watched Tom Segura’s standup on Netflix a while back, and after seeing a few clips of this show on Youtube, I decided to check it out. Centered around fart humor, gross Internet clips, and a tremendous amount of inside jokes, hosts husband (Tom) and wife (Christina) take you through their daily lives. I got a major dad boner just typing out how much I love this show.