Nathanael Green's Blog

An advertising copywriter, novelist, and freelance writer's brain goo.

I Listen to Podcasts. Wanna Know 6 of ’Em?

with 5 comments

We’re all friends here, so you can admit it:

You’ve always wondered what I’m listening to while I’m folding laundry.

(You haven’t wondered that? So … is it weird that I sometimes wonder what’s cranking on your stereo when you’re scraping gunk out of your oven?)

Regardless. When I’m driving alone or folding laundry or doing some other passive task, I sometimes listen to music, or the silence of the room, or my own rambling as I talk to myself. But other times, I listen to some really great podcasts.

Like, really great podcasts. As in, I do a little air-punch of joy when there’s a new one posted.

So I wanted to share six of my favorites with you. I hope you’ll download at least one episode to give them a try: 

  • The Moth Podcast“True stories told live without notes.”People get on stage and tell crazy, disturbing, hilarious, and insightful stories. The Moth records the live performances, then offers up the best ones in this podcast.
  • Lightspeed Magazine Podcast – There are a number of very good programs for audio fiction, and this is one of my favorites. Very professional, with great quality, and it features some really sharp fantasy and science fiction from the folks at Lightspeed. (I also recommend subscribing to their magazine.)
  • PlanetPipe You don’t have to love bagpipes to love this podcast. (But if you don’t love bagpipes, you’re off my Christmas card list.) Though the premise is everything piping related, the real strength of this podcast is its musical variety. Host Lorne MacDougall gives us everything from traditional pipe band competitions to modern folk music to Celtic rock—thanks for the introduction to Rura!
  • Selected ShortsProfessional actors reading great short stories. Basically, wonderful performances and voices giving live to some of the greatest words written down. Definitely look for the episodes with Aimee Bender and Etgar Keret.
  • Lexicon Valley – A couple of wordnerds bicker and educate us about language. It’s always interesting, usually educational, and generally damn funny. And one of the hosts, Bob Garfield, is a curmudgeon after my own cantankerous heart.
  • WNYC’s RadiolabThis podcast has had me literally open-mouthed in wonder.Because science is awesome, and Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich take the awesomest bits, and explain them with engaging, amazing stories.

There you have it. The by-no-means exhaustive list of stuff that goes into my ears. I hope you’ll check them out and give at least one a trial listen. They’re all free, folks!

And, as is only fair, I’d love to give a listen to your recommendations. What’s playing in your ear buds that I should be listening to? Maybe you even have your own podcast you want to share?

5 Responses

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  1. Nater –
    Nice list there. I got away from podcasts about two years ago but I love when I catch Radiolab on the, er, radio. The Hollywood Saloon was a great podcast about movies and the film-making biz, but I think those guys went “off the air.”

    Brian O'Rourke

    December 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm

  2. Nate, this is a great list. I haven’t really gotten on to podcasts, so this is a nice place to start. I had heard about Radiolab through Brian’s mention sometime ago, and listened to one on memory, but it’s nice to have the links all in one place.


    December 16, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    • Thanks, Seana. I have lots more recommendations, too if you’re looking for something specific.

      One more I think you might particularly like is The World in Words. Usually 15-20 minutes of all language-related news. Pretty fun.

      Nathanael Green

      December 17, 2012 at 10:05 am

      • Thanks, Nate. I’ve bookmarked that one. One friend in my Finnegans Wake group keeps trying to help us understand that the world IS words. Language is the mediating factor. Or so he tells me.


        December 27, 2012 at 11:07 pm

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