It’s hard to find new podcasts. They’re the kind of thing you stumble on, following a link from a link, until you don’t remember how you got to where you are.
I listen to podcasts on my morning run and I listen while I sew. I listen while I prep dinner and while I fold the laundry. All together I listen to more than 10 hours of audio storytelling a week! This leads to a unsatiable hunger for new shows.
Thankfully, the podcasting scene has exploded this year. Here are five shows I’m enjoying right now. If you’re looking for some more favorites you might enjoy my past recommendation lists (here’s 20 from April of 2013, and 10 more from August of 2013, plus 10 more from April of 2014).
As always, I heartily enjoy your recommendations so if you listen to a show you think I’d like (or my readers might like) please leave it in the comments. And, of course, I invite you to check out the While She Naps podcast. This episode with Kathy Mack of Pink Chalk Studio and Kristin Link of Sew Mama Sew has been one of the most popular among listeners this year.
Here’s a list of five shows to check out:
1. Pencil vs. Pixel a weekly show hosted by Cesar Contreras. Guests include designers, artists, writers, and founders. I loved episode #9 with Jamie Derringer, the founder and executive editor of Design Milk. I also recommend #40 with Rena Tom. Cesar is taking a break until then new year, but you can catch up on past episodes in the meantime.
2. Death Sex and Money describes itself this ways, “A podcast about the big questions and hard choices that are often left out of polite conversation.” That’s pretty much the best theme for a podcast I can think of. I loved this episode and this one. Most of all, I love the host, Anna Sale. I hope to meet her some day.
3. Compulsory is a new show by Kim Werker. It’s short format (under 20 minutes) which is refreshing. Kim is a writer and a thinker and it shows. She interviews creative people about the things they feel compelled to make. Kim is the author of the new book about creative demons, Mighty Ugly, which I’m reading now and really enjoying.
4. StartUp is a fantastic podcast about public radio producer, Alex Blumberg’s, effort to start up a new business. It operates on a meta level because Alex’s new business will be a podcasting network. He records everything at every stage, including private conversations with his wife about finances, struggles with naming the company, failed and successful efforts to get venture capital, and his search for a business partner. Spoiler: he’s succeeded! The new network, Gimlet Media, is set to air its first show soon. Exciting!
5. What’s Your Story is a new show by Meighan O’Toole’s. Meighan is someone who loves artists and creative people and wants them to succeed. For years she had an art blog called My Love For You and she had a podcast back then that I loved. Now she’s back with this new show. She talks with artists about creativity and motivation and how they use social media to build community.
And you’re listening to Serial, right? I love it, but for me what’s best about Serial is that everyone is listening to it. When a podcasts gets enough attention to generate buzz in the media, that’s a sign that podcasting is becoming a part of mainstream society. And that’s awesome.
Know someone who doesn’t get what a podcast is? Here are two handy analogies to try:
- Podcasts are to radio what Netflix is to TV. Listen on demand.
- Podcasts are to radio what blogs are to magazines. Independently created content by enthusiasts.
Okay, you’re turn. Recommend a show (or tell me why you don’t listen to podcasts).
I love Serial! Totally addicted. I wanted to ask – I use Sound Cloud – but I can’t seem to find you on there! Am I missing something? Love the Podcast suggestions, keep them coming!
I need to add that to my to-do list. Will do it soon!
Kim Werker says
Thanks for including Compulsory in your list, Abby! (And OMG Serial. I just caught up while making soap over the weekend, and I’m twitchy about the two-week wait for the next episode!)
Of course, Kim!
Cesar Contreras says
Thanks so much for the Pencil vs Pixel shout out, Abby! StartUp is definitely a favorite here too. 🙂
Of course, Cesar! Love StartUp. Excited to listen to ReplyAll.
Love Serial too! Getting more done with you and the Serial podcast!
Thank you for listening to my show, Dacey!
Thanks for the recs, some I haven’t heard of before. I love podcasts especially since I do a lot of mindless sewing and in those situations music just isn’t enough to keep me going. Sort of related to Serial, I loved the little “what is a podcast” that Ira Glass did with his neighbor showing how to listen to a podcast.
I love that video, too! So brilliant.
Thanks for these recommendations, I’m excited to check them out!
Wendi Moore says
I recently discovered Monica Lee’s podcasts on Smartcreativewomen.com. I’ve listened to several of Monica’s interviews with artists, creative entrepreneurs, art agents, and intellectual property attorneys. I love her website! The podcasts are very informative, and Monica has a warm, bubbly personality.
That’s a good one! I’ve listened to Monica’s show, too, and really enjoyed it.
I just listened to both episodes of Compulsory while on my commute home yesterday (about 45 minutes) and was able to catch up on a crochet project I’m feeling obsessive about. Also because someone on that podcast mentioned Serial, I’m getting into that now too! Just finished the very first episode and can’t wait to get back to the next one (it’s a little creepy but riveting is probably the best description for it). I LOVE Modern Sewciety (which is how I found out about your website, blog, and podcast) and that’s my go to for something to listen to while I work on Couch to 5K (need to get back to that). Since I have a toddler I don’t have a lot of uninteruppted time to be plugged in but now my commute time is becoming my podcast time. Thanks for sharing your favorites! OH and can I say that podcasts are the perfect format for something to “do” while sewing? No need to look up and see what’s going on because it’s all audio! I’m becoming a podcast addict now! Also, I love the format because it reminds me of listening to public radio which I don’t get to do much anymore (I wasn’t surprised that Ira Glass’ name popped up in relation to This American Life and Serial).
Thanks for all of your recommendations. I just recently started listening to podcasts again while driving. My local public radio station has some great content (WAMC) and a lot of it is available via podcast. I like 51% – about issues of the day from women’s perspective.
Just came across this post and had to check out your past lists to see if two of my favorites are on it (and they’re not!)
I must suggest both Stuff You Missed in History Class and the TED Radio Hour. I’m not a history buff but have listened to the past 3 years of archived of Stuff You Missed. They do such a gret job varying the topics and making a historical person or event so interesting. It’s digestable in a great 30 minute format and the hosts go to great lengths to keep the story unbiased and incredibly accurate. With the TED radio hour I really like that it highlights related TED talks in one show. I love me some TED talks and the additional story behind the speaker is often just as interesting as going back and listening to the whole talk afterwards.
Cheers & keep up the amazing work on the podcast. I just recently started listening and really love your show.
I also listen to podcasts on my morning run, and on my commute to work. I’m always looking for new ones!
One of my favorites is On Being with Krista Tippet. It s my go-to when I need some inner-thiniking: http://onbeing.org/
I listen to Darknet Diaries! It’s about computer hacking. The host, Jack, does explain the really complicated stuff. It’s all about hacking computer networks told by the hackers themselves, sometimes, and hosted by a hacker. If you heard about something being hacked years ago chances are good you can hear the real story there.
Sounds like a good one!