The Podcast List
I love podcasts. It’s not as much of a commitment as a book, it can be serialized, and they aren’t as depressing as the news. I like having something playing in the background while I work so I’ve vetted many to see what appeals to me. I didn’t mean to make the list in order of preference. But after making it, yea, this is pretty much the order I would rank my top 10.
1. Revisionist History. Malcolm Gladwell takes an insightful and detailed look at historical topics you think you know about and gives another perspective at what really happened. Not conspiracy theories, just another point of view.
2. Slow Burn. Season one is all about the Watergate investigation. How it started, the players you never knew about, the small things that had to happen to get traction on the bigger story. This sounds like a boring history lecture, but it’s reminiscent of the news headlines of today.
3. RadioLab. Was one of the first podcasts I ever got hooked on. A broad range of topics that really take a deep dive into fascinating subjects that you easily find enjoyable.
4. More Perfect. A spinoff of RadioLab that focuses on the U.S. Supreme Court over the decades and the famous cases that shaped American culture.
5. Lore. Lore is a podcast about non-fiction scary stories. Each episode examines historical events that show the dark side of human nature and is presented in a style that’s been compared to a campfire experience.
6. Dirty John. A true crime story focusing on the life and exploits of John Meehan and his relationship with Debra Newell and her family. Themes of abuse, addiction, and manipulation.
7. Planet Money. The economy explained. Imagine you could call up a friend and say, “Meet me at the bar and tell me what’s going on with the economy.” Now imagine that’s actually a fun evening.
8. S-Town. John B. McLemore sent an email to the staff of the show This American Life asking them to investigate an alleged murder in his hometown of Woodstock, Alabama. After a year of exchanging emails and several months of conversation with McLemore, producer Brian Reed traveled to Woodstock to investigate.