I love podcasts. Especially true crime podcasts.
I listen to them while I walk my dog, while I drive to work, when I cook, and even sometimes while I code at work. (Hard to register all the content while coding, so.) Podcasts are a love I have only recently found, sometime last year, and have grown to really dig. I had to stop watching the news, so it helps fill in the old void where NPR lives. (I still listen to a lot of NPR. But still.)
Since (mostly) giving up listening to the news, I’ve been feeling much better in general. I’ve been feeling like I’m in a wild Black Mirror episode that doesn’t seem to end. I distract myself from current events as much as possible, watching an excessive amount of animal documentaries and period pieces. Ah, period pieces! (Think Jane Eyre, Downton Abbey, etc. etc.) Watching so many period pieces helps me to fantasize about simpler times, you know- when most people died by the age of 30 and health insurance companies didn’t exist. You know. Sigh.
In the words of Forrest Gump, that’s all I have to say about that.
My favorite podcasts as of right now- February 2017.
As I’ve mentioned before, I love me some true crime. And My Favorite Murder is I daresay my absolute favorite true crime podcast. Hosts Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark are sure to have you laughing in no time, as they’ve somehow found a way to make both a super heavy podcast that somehow still feels lighthearted, thanks to their friendly charm & obvious respect for the murder victims they cover.
Over the past few months since I have found MFM, they have exploded in popularity, turning up on other podcasts like the Cracked podcast & others, touring cities, and there’s even a MFM Facebook Group with over 100,000 members (or “murderinos”, as we group members say.) Listening to My Favorite Murder is like talking true crime with your best friends; Karen & Georgia are down-to-earth gals who I think many can identify with. They’re both refreshingly open & honest, and their stories will keep you hungering for more. Yep. I am a true murderino.
Who doesn’t love a good story? The Moth podcast brings you real stories from Moth events all over the country (not to mention Australia, the UK and Canada,) by individual storytellers, told in front of a live audience. The stories are impeccable. Some will break your heart. Some will make you laugh until you cry. They’re all unique & different, coming from all types of people. All in all, you’re sure to be inspired.
Nate DiMeo is the host and creator of The Memory Palace, a storytelling podcast. The stories range in content, based on (namely American) historical people and events. A few of my favorite episodes include Episode 85: AKA Leo, Episode 93: Local Channels and Episode 76: Mary Walker Would Wear What She Wanted. Varying in length from 5 minutes to twenty, these stories from The Memory Palace are like a shot of inspiration for the soul.
Criminal is an amazing crime / true crime podcast of varying stories, based on both acts of crime as well as people who’ve been victims of crime, and even some who are simply stuck in the middle. Truly fascinating, host Phoebe Judge taps into the human psyche in a plethora of ways – from sociological to historical to anthropological. As of this time writing, the latest episode titled Finding Sarah and Philip absolutely broke my heart in a few places when I listened to it. But in the good way: a deep case study of humanity, love and inspiration.
Generation Why is another great true crime podcast (that should probably be higher on this list,) produced and created by fellow Kansas Citians Aaron and Justin. These guys are great; their podcast episodes are thorough, informative and well researched. I like to listen to Gen Why when it has my undivided attention, because there is so much info they include. Truly worth a listen if you love true crime as much as I do.
Ahhhh, Ted Radio Hour from NPR. This is probably the first podcast I really got into, and for that I’m eternally grateful. Ted Radio Hour is hosted by Guy Raz, arguably one of my favorite podcast hosts. The podcast episodes are based around a common theme, and include clips from a variety of Ted Talks that support the overall theme. A podcast that works to generate ideas and new ways of thinking, if you enjoy Ted Talks, you should definitely check this one out.
Hand down, Stuff Mom Never Told You is my favorite “feminist” podcast. Hosts Cristen and Caroline have an awesome lighthearted charisma to their narration, and it serves them well. The podcast tackles everything female related – body shaming, mansplaining, adoption, maternity – and they really hit the nail on the head.
Another podcast based on stories of humanity, life and everything in between. I love love love This American Life. Hosted by the all-knowing Ira Glass, you’re sure to learn a thing or two, and likely come away with a different perspective than when you first started.
Hidden Brain from NPR’s Shankar Vedantam is a podcast based around psychology, sociology, and overall human behaviors in today’s world. The goal of the podcast seems to be approaching modern topics with a different point of view, backed up by social behavior research, and aims at giving listeners a new way of thinking about things. Highly recommended!
20K is a tech podcast, based around our audible, noisy world. Still relatively new, this podcast offers a lot and I think it’s going to go great places as they continue to produce more episodes. My personal favorite is the episode where they talk to Susan Bennett, who’s the original “Voice of Siri.” Really interesting stuff and definitely worth a listen.
11. 99% Invisible podcast
99% Invisible is another great tech podcast, focused on design and architecture. Given my profession as a designer & developer, this podcast always serves me well when I find I’m in need of some inspiration.
The last true crime podcast I’m going to include in this list (though there are more I enjoy- I’m just incredibly lazy) is Sword and Scale. This dark podcast is similar to Generation Why in it’s thorough-nature, backed by a lot of research on the cases they cover. Another one any true crime fan is sure to enjoy.
And of course, Design Matters podcast from Debbie Millman is another great podcast when in need of some designer inspiration. She interviews a variety of talents and has a plethora of episodes to pick from.
What are your favorite podcasts? Are there any particular ones you’d recommend?
Let me know in the comments!