Before I started walking I wasn’t really familiar with podcasts, and I didn’t like listening to anything, preferring to absorb my surrounding and the sounds of nature. But some days are long and tiring and it can be nice to have a bit of a distraction. I rarely listen to music because I have so little of it downloaded to my phone to keep space for the thousands of photos I take.
And of course you don’t have to be on an adventure to listen, they are good for your morning commute or just weekend entertainment too!
Here are a few of my favourite podcasts, in no particular order:
1. My Dad Wrote A Porno, Comedy
“Imagine if your Dad wrote a dirty book. Most people would try to ignore it and pretend it had never happened – but not Jamie Morton. Instead, he’s decided to read it to the world in this brand new comedy podcast. With the help of his friends, James Cooper and BBC Radio 1’s Alice Levine, Jamie will be reading a chapter a week and discovering more about his father than he ever bargained for.”
I love this podcast. It’s lighthearted, easy to listen to and at times it’s laugh out loud funny. It’s comforting to hear their British voices when I’m away. I’ve introduced this podcast to many people and it’s been a hit with everyone. There are two series to binge on and the third series is about to start next week which I’m strangely excited about! #pornoday
2. How I Built This,
“How I Built This is a podcast about innovators, entrepreneurs, and idealists, and the stories behind the movements they built. Each episode is a narrative journey marked by triumphs, failures, serendipity and insight — told by the founders of some of the world’s best known companies and brands.”
As with most NPR podcasts, this is a very polished production. They pull in some big names and it’s so interesting to hear from companies such as AirBnb, Patagonia and Instagram, and how building an enormously successful brand isn’t always straightforward or easy. I’m always inspired, positive and full of ideas after I’ve listened to an episode.
3. The Guardian’s Audio Long Reads, Education
“The Guardian’s Audio Long Reads podcasts are a selection of the Guardian’s long read articles which are published in the paper and online. It gives you the opportunity to get on with your day whilst listening to some of the finest journalism the Guardian has to offer: in-depth writing from around the world on immigration, crime, business, the arts and much more.”
I’m fairly new to this podcast, but I’ve found some really interesting articles. It can be hit or miss, for example I couldn’t finish the one about mole catchers but I listened to the one on bottled water twice. It depends what interests you, but the topics are so varied there will be something for everyone and there is a good mix of voice and a large back catalogue.
4. Friday Night Comedy From BBC Radio 4, and The News Quiz Extra,
“Download the best new comedy from Radio 4, every Friday. Features The News Quiz, The Now Show, Dead Ringers and The Museum of Curiosity.”
All of the shows are funny, but The News Quiz has to be my favourite. And they have introduced a separate podcast called the News Quiz Extra which is longer and contains some of the more controversial stuff, the stuff that a Radio 4 listener wouldn’t like! While I’m away, it is pretty much my only exposure to what’s happening in the news! And the Britishness makes me feel closer to home.
5. No Such Thing As A Fish, Comedy
“A podcast from the QI offices in which the writers of the hit BBC show huddle around a microphone and discuss the best things they’ve found out this week.”
A simple format and concept which is so entertaining. They discuss the most random things and you always end up learning something. (It’s where I got my bald headed eagle fact from!) The 4some always go off on random tangents and when they laugh you can’t help but laugh along with them. Lots of episodes to binge on.
6.The Guilty Feminist,
“Join comedian Deborah Frances-White and her guests for this comedy podcast, recorded in front of a live audience. Each week they discuss topics “all 21 first century feminists agree on” while confessing their insecurities, hypocrisies and fears that underlie their lofty principles.”
This one can be hit or miss, mostly funny but when Deborah Frances-White gets a bit shrill it becomes difficult to listen to. It raises some really interesting issues and can be quite empowering. If you can get past that half of it is basically an advert for the comedians stand up shows it can be pretty funny. Sound quality and production can be terrible!
7.TED Radio Hour,
Inspiration / Education
“The TED Radio Hour is a journey through fascinating ideas: astonishing inventions, fresh approaches to old problems, new ways to think and create. Based on Talks given by riveting speakers on the world-renowned TED stage, each show is centered on a common theme – such as the source of happiness, crowd-sourcing innovation, power shifts, or inexplicable connections.”
Another polished NPR production. First of all you learn that TED stands for Technology Entertainment Design – who knew?! This podcast always provides food for thought. Subjects like cosmetic brain surgery, space, and the future of technology can be utterly terrifying and make you want to live in the woods forever. Subjects like simply happy, the act of listening and trust and consequences can make you think for the rest of the day, without the need to listen to anything else.
8.Tough Girl, Inspiration
“The Tough Girl Podcast is all about inspiring and motivating YOU! I will be interviewing inspirational women from around the world, who’ve faced and overcome difficult challenges and situations, they will share their story, their knowledge and provide advice and essential tips for you to overcome your own personal challenges.”
Sarah Williams hosts this podcast and she manages to get some really interesting guests and gets really in depth interviews. It’s inspiring to hear about other women doing amazing things and it goes hand in hand with my other project – Love Her Wild. It also massively fuels the fire for future adventures!
And of course keep your ears open for my interview coming soon!…
9. The Adam Buxton Podcast, Comedy
“Adam Buxton is a British comedian, actor and director who has appeared in films such as ‘Hot Fuzz’, ‘Stardust’ and ‘Son Of Rambow’ as well as a variety of TV shows in the UK. Since 2007 he has hosted ‘BUG’, a bi monthly live show that combines music videos and comedy that became a TV series on Sky Atlantic in 2012. Along with lifelong friend Joe Cornish he also is one half of award winning TV, radio and podcast duo Adam & Joe who have worked together since 1995. He lives with his wife and 3 children in Norfolk in the east of England. He is writing this himself using the third person.”
Having worked in radio, this podcast is always really well produced and the sound quality is great, and when you listen to a lot of podcasts that’s something you’ll really grow to appreciate! It’s usually around an hour of just a random chat with a guest. The simple formats are the best!
10. Serial, Drama
“Serial is a podcast from the creators of This American Life, hosted by Sarah Koenig. Serial unfolds one story – a true story – over the course of a whole season. The show follows the plot and characters wherever they lead, through many surprising twists and turns. Sarah won’t know what happens at the end of the story until she gets there, not long before you get there with her.”
If you are already into podcasts you will definitely know about this one. I feel like this made podcasts popular. For Making A Murderer fans, this is also good to binge on. I can only comment on series one, I haven’t listened to series two.
All (except Serial) the above podcasts have new episodes every week, the ones below are getting a special mention because they are limited to just a few episodes, and you can listen to them all in a day!
I was super excited about this one, from the makers of Serial and This American Life it had heavy promotion. It was also released all at once, so I could indulge in a binge listen as I was fighting my way through the tussock. But. It was just weird, the whole thing. I can’t decide what to make of it, I can’t decide if I liked it or if it just made me angry. I would be interested to hear of others opinions…
50 Things That Made The Modern Economy, Education
Each episode is only about 10 minutes long, but each one is really interesting. I’m never going to be able to look at a shipping container, or think about time in the same way again. It explains how some very simple things have massively impacted our lives. It makes me want to go away and find out more.
Radiolab Presents: More Perfect, Education
Only listen to this one when you have absolutely no distractions. It takes a lot of concentration, especially if you aren’t that familiar with the American justice system (it helps to listen with a friend who can explain it to you!). It explains how the Supreme Court operates, and it is quite an eye opener!