As we continue to spend more time indoors and on our own, we are always looking for podcast recommendations. Breathing new life into the spoken word, podcasting is now so popular it can be overwhelming to know where to start.
From your daily news source to your virtual best friend, here are the podcasts we can’t stop listening to.
We like to start our day with The Daily. ‘Powered by New York Times journalism’, this bitesize news bulletin takes just 20 minutes of your time and is presented by host Michael Barbaro in an easily digested format. Essential listening.
(We also recommend: Up First)
Produced by American Public Media, In the Dark is a Peabody Award-winning investigative podcast that is truly compelling in its storytelling. Following their newsworthy second series that chronicled the Curtis Flowers case, the team are back with an ‘intimate and deeply human’ special report focused on the reverberations of coronavirus in the Mississippi Delta. Riveting.
(We also recommend: Slow Burn)
Presented by best friends Ann Friedman and Aminatou Sow, Call Your Girlfriend is a delightful delve into pop culture and politics. A podcast ‘for long distance besties everywhere,’ it takes the format of a weekly catch up between two friends on opposite sides of the States, and is sure to prompt you to pick up the phone and call your girlfriend. Delightfully intimate.
(We also recommend: Here to Slay)
A podcast from award-winning journalists Maria Hinojosa and Julio Ricardo Varela, In the Thick tackles race, identity and politics head-on. Born out of the need for diverse representation during the 2016 election coverage, In The Thick examines the week’s politics through ‘a lens of unique and varied perspectives’, engaging in frank, open discussion with their guests. Upfront and unapologetic.
(We also recommend: The Brown Girls Guide to Politics)
We are always happy to discover a new podcast tackling sustainability and The Impact Report is our latest find. Presented by students, alumni, and faculty at Bard College’s MBA in Sustainability Program, every episode includes insights from leaders in business and social entrepreneurship. Covering novel strategies and innovation in sustainability from urban New York to rural Africa, it’s a global look at the current climate. A fresh take.
(We also recommend: The Sustainability Agenda)
Part of an extensive New York Times project, 1619 examines the many ways slavery has changed the course of history. ‘Connecting past and present through the oldest form of storytelling’, the five-part series looks at the economic, social, health, and political impact of being Black in America via the long shadow of slavery. Educate yourself.
(We also recommend: Revisionist History)
Host Sutanya advocates for ‘food as the ultimate form of self-care’ in Dinner for One, a unique podcast about the healing power of good food. An American expat in Paris mending a broken heart, Sutanya invites her friends over for dinner to discuss their own stories over a glass (or several) of red wine. Food for thought.
(We also recommend: Spilled Milk)
If you’ve read (or perhaps only read about) this year’s most polarizing novel, American Dirt, we recommend seeking out the revealing podcast from NPR Latino USA, Digging Into ‘American Dirt’. The series includes conversations with four people ‘at the heart of the controversy surrounding the book’, including the author Jeanine Cummins. Up for discussion.
(We also recommend: Literary Friction)
We finish with a wild card. I’m sure we won’t be the first or the last to profusely recommend you listen to Dolly Parton's America. If you weren’t a fan before, you most certainly will be once you’re through with this fascinating ‘story of a legend at the crossroads of America's culture wars’. Hosted by Jad Abumrad, creator of Radiolab, this wonderful non-fiction series will transport you to Dollywood. Addictive.
(We also recommend: 99% Invisible)