Podcasts. What the hell are they?

I’m a late convert to podcasts. My introduction was on a camping trip when a friend sat on a chair for five days straight as she listened to Serial. I didn’t get it.

But now I’m all in. There’s nothing better than sitting back and listening to an interesting conversation especially when you don’t have to participate.

Here are some that I love – in no particular order.

Here’s the thing
Everyone knows that I love Alec Baldwin. He is an actor, an author and a podcast host. His interviewees range from Barbara Striesand to New York school teachers. He does his research and he is engaged with his subjects. My most recent favourite – with Stanley Tucci. Screams of delight when I heard this one. And the interview with the Human Centipede has stayed with me.

A podcast about the power of non fiction featuring a short story each episode. It’s powerful, raw and gutsy. These people lay it all on the line and leave themselves wide open. I love the honesty of it. Bravo to Nat V for facilitating this wonderful storytelling phenomena.

Chat 10 Looks 3
So much has been written already about the Leigh Sales and Annabel Crabb podcast. It’s informative, funny and joyful especially the early episodes when they were still coming to grips with the technology. Favourite? If I have to narrow it down, I’ll nominate the podcast to the last ever episode of The Americans.

The Daily Michael Barbaro’s voice comforts me even when he’s about to launch into the latest political horror coming out of the US. The podcast gives a great background to the machinations of US politics- and we all need that at the moment don’t we?

David Tennant does a Podcast
This is just delightful. He’s sweet and funny and does a good interview. Loved the episode when he interviewed George Takei. I’m working my way through series 2 and I am  so glad I’m not done! There’s sometimes nothing worse than being up to date in a beloved podcast.


Photo by Thomas Martinsen – unsplash

10 things to tell you
Podcaster, writer and Hollywood housewife, Laura Tremaine’s podcast is part spiritual, part practical and with a good smattering of book chat. My favourite episodes are the ones when she interviews her husband, who produced the Jackass series. I know this all sounds kooky but it works for me. She’s done several different podcasts – I also recommend her earlier podcast, Smartest Person in the Room.

Literally by Rob Lowe. I squealed with joy when I found out Rob was doing a podcast. He mainly chats to actors, more often than not the subject comes back to him, and he’s American/excitable loud boy. But he’s self deprecating, funny and very, very charming.

Don’t Shoot the Messenger
This is a very Melbourne podcast as there is a lot of football content during the season. The ladies are both AFL tragics and Caro is sports journalist. Caroline Wilson and Corrie Perkin talk about everything. Books, films, food. Crushes. What makes them grumpy. They have a series of regular guests who all add light and shade to the show. It’s been my go to during the pandemic because of its Melbourneness.

Long Distance Call
A team effort by Eliza Harvey and her mother, Geraldine Carroll. It’s a podcast that’s personal and political and literary. It’s a conversation between the two that started literally as a long distance call when Eliza was living in Jakarta and then Beirut. They don’t always agree; they’re smart and personable. I love this podcast.

The Hot Flush
I’m just getting started on this one and have a three year back catalogue to work through. Kayte Murphy (aka Mrs Woog) and Kim Berry target audience is the peri menopausal but I think anyone could enjoy it. They’re whip smart, funny and irreverent. Both are bloggers and well worth a follow.

America, If You’re Listening
An Australian take on US politics. Sadly, this series will be finishing soon with the election looming tomorrow. But it’s a great overview giving an insight into the years of the Trump presidency. It’s presented by journalist, Matt Bevan whose Twitter feed will be well worth following on Wednesday 4 November!

The Party Room
Fran Kelly and Patricia Karvelas disseminate news and political issues. They’re highly respected ABC journalists and present a clear summary of current events. Definitely one for the political geeks but even if you’re not it’s an accessible interesting podcast.

The Ocho
A podcast all about extremely unusual sports.The first episode was all about Quidditch and the team captain of a New York team was interviewed. Still trying to visualise that one! So far there are only four episodes and hopefully there will be more soon.

Pyne Time
Sadly this series only went for a few episodes, but it was Christopher Pyne at his snarky best. Somehow, the whole podcast became all about him which was infuriating and bloody funny.

Richard Fidler and Sarah Kanowski have accompanied me on road trips for years. The podcast, Conversations is simply an hour long chat with a person with an interesting story to tell. There are celebrities but there’s others ; the ecologist whose expert subject is bees, the shepherd from the Lake District and the outback nurses.

So that’s my list. How about yours? Which podcasts do you follow?

Disclaimer. The hosts of Memoria and The Ocho are both friends of mine.

2 thoughts on “Podcasts. What the hell are they?

  1. Hi Erica
    I’m a podcast fan too. I wrote about them a few months ago as well. https://wordpress.com/post/oldchookenterprises.com/3132. At the moment I am eagerly waiting on the next episode of Samin Nosrat’s Home Cooking episode to drop. So, so funny and if you’re into cooking, some great food ideas. As you know I’m also C10L3 listener but have stop follwoing the Facebook page as it was consuming too much of my time and emotional bandwidth. (So many posts!) I have also recently added The Good Life Project. I find the host’s voice a bit offputting – he speaks really quietyly and his guests are louder so it’s hard to set te volume when you’re out walking wth headphones on, but ihe has some great guests. I’d recommend the episode about Designing your Life.

    I still listen to Gretchin Rubin’s Happier even though I find it a bit cloying and All in the Mind from ABC is still on high rotation. The miniseries true crime ones are often good too. I listened to Dirty John in one weekend and enjoyed that.

    I listen in the car and also when I’m walking/running. It makes me walk for longer just to listen to the end of an episode!

    Thanks for the suggestions, I’ll check them out.


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