noun: podcast; plural noun: podcasts
1. a digital audio file made available on the Internet for downloading to a computer or portable media player, typically available as a series, new installments of which can be received by subscribers automatically.
Pod what? Podcast. Sure, you’re already aware of them, but have you been listening in? The era of podcasts is officially upon us, with the podcast culture ever growing and reaching further into the daily lives of all generations.
Which is a relief. The continuously spreading popularity of podcasts indicates humans still have the aptitude to simply listen and pay attention to the detail in solely audible words. We live in such a visually stimulating world where listening to a podcast is a great change of pace for our brains, as well as a great opportunity to multitask. I personally have sweated through many workouts, driven copious amounts of miles, and cooked numerous meals while listening to these refreshing, thought-provoking, exciting, and often inspiring audio clips.
I’ve compiled list of podcasts you’ve just got to check out.
This American Life is arguably one of the most popular podcasts today. It broadcasts throughout the U.S. and internationally to about 2.2 million dedicated listeners. Hosted by the marvelous Ira Glass, the uncle you’ve always wanted, and produced by WBEZ, This American Life is a non-fiction podcast fueled by curiosity of the people and happenings in the world around us.
Ranging from 70-year-old love stories to the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, to the strategic timing of posts on social media for more “likes,” to an insight on children’s lives in the American school systems, the podcast tells the stories you didn’t know you needed to here. Often comprised of memoirs, field recordings and interviews, each episode has a theme focused journalistic pieces. It’s sometimes comical, sometimes emotional, sometimes informational, but ALWAYS witty and fascinating material.
This is a fun and quirky podcast where creator Starlee Kine unravels random mysteries that present themselves in her day-to-day life. By means of intuitive investigation, she solves mysteries such as the meaning behind a strange personalized license plate and how tall is Jake Gyllenhaal really? Yup, Starlee gets him on the phone in order to reveal his true stature. This is an intriguing podcast series best enjoyed when you just need a little bit of light-hearted mischief and surprise in your day. ￼
— Pandora (@pandora_radio) November 24, 2015
From the creators of This American Life and hosted by Sarah Koenig, this podcast is arguably one of those most famous ones of all time. It tells true stories over the course of a season. Releasing one episode at a time, week-by-week, Sarah talks us through the plots, side plots, and the lives of the people involved — whom you will quickly become invested in. I recommend starting with the first season because it’s completed so you can listen to it from start to finish. (Podcast binge and chill?)
Serial season one dives into a questionable 1999 Baltimore homicide case, telling the story of Adnan, a man convicted of murder at the age of 17, yet he still claims his innocence. Listen to see what Sarah’s investigative journalism and conversations with people involved in the 1999 events found 15 years later that helped Adnan’s case to return to court in 2016.
On Being is one for the old souls of all backgrounds and ages. This podcast gets REAL while exploring the deeper questions of existence: what it means to be human, and how do we want to live it? Created by Krista Tippett and distributed by American Public Media, you’ll often find yourself in a wonderful state of self-reflection and deep thought while listening to the conversation on topics such as the “Dignity of Difference” and the “Courage of Being Vulnerable.” By delving into the multifaceted aspects of spirituality, science, ethics, and the mere fabric of our existence, the people behind the On Being podcasts discuss the depth and intricacy in unfolding answers to many questions of life.
When finished listening to prior recommendations, check out RadioLab podcast to be further enlightened on science, people and the world around us.