Podcast Starter Pack

I can’t leave the house without my earbuds. Or my headphones, depending on my mood. Although I will say that since my headphone cord broke last week and I switched to $5 earbuds, I am seriously missing the noise cancelling technology. (Thanks but no thanks, Bose.)

I would say that most of the time I listen to podcasts as I walk to and from class. I’m never in the mood to listen to music for some reason, maybe because I studying music at school all day, or maybe I’m just a really curious person. It’s a combination of both, I imagine.

There’s something about stories for radio that makes them so meaningful. I understand that if you were to read the transcript of a radio show from a screen or piece of paper, it wouldn’t have the same effect on you as if you had heard it. I’m sure there’s an art to writing for radio and I could probably take a class on it.

(Before I get into my recommendations, I want to preface this by saying that I listen to my podcasts on The Podcast App. The built-in iPhone Apple Podcasts app is a poor excuse for a podcast app!)

The starter pack:

This American Life was on in my mom’s car all the time while I was growing up. Every week the stories are based on different themes, and each story offers a totally different perspective on that theme. They just released their 661st episode on Sunday, so there’s a lot to check out. I would recommend this podcast to everyone on earth.

Serial and S-Town are break-off pods from TAL. Serial is hosted by Sarah Koenig, and in each season she picks one story to tell episode-by-episode. The first season was a national sensation, and now she’s in her 3rd season, reporting on the criminal justice system in Cleveland. Easy to binge-listen. Same with S-Town, a six episode story about a man who lives in Alabama. Trust me, it’s more interesting than it sounds.

Ear Hustle is based out of the San Quentin State Prison and it explores topics in prison life by interviewing real prisoners.

Queery with Cameron Esposito is a good one if you’re interested in queer topics and hearing from queer people in the entertainment industry.

2 Dope Queens is a comedy podcast that supports women and people of color! The hosts are hilarious and they spotlight around 3 comedians per episode. They only invite 1 white guy on per year, and last year it was Tom Hanks. My kind of show!

The Daily is my preferred news podcast from the NY Times. It comes out every morning and each episode is different. It can surprise you.

Let me know what else I’m missing!