I love podcasts.
I listen to podcasts constantly – when I am cooking and cleaning in the kitchen, when I am out walking, when I am driving to pick up our grocery order, when I go to bed, when I am on airplanes and by swimming pools.
Over the past ten years, I have watched podcast favorites cease production (Yeah, It’s That Bad; Seen / Unseen) and new podcasts emerge to take the world by storm (Serial; Dirty John). I am constantly on the hunt for new podcasts, and always enjoy sharing my recommendations with others.
Here are some of my current top picks:
When the Currently Reading podcast made its debut a couple of years ago, I felt like I had truly found my reading people. I was missing Books on the Nightstand quite a bit, and hadn’t really found another reading podcast that really struck a chord with me (and boy, did I check out many).
This has become a favorite of mine for two main reasons:
1.) Hosts Meredith and Kaytee are great – they are warm, genuine, enthusiastic, and have awesome chemistry when chatting books together. It's an easy banter than makes for an easy listen.
2.) My book tastes align with theirs quite a bit, and if they recommend something and have strong opinions about it, I know to immediately add it to my reading list.
Each episode features a “bookish moment of the week”, a rundown of what each host is currently reading, a discussion topic, and a book each host wants to press into readers’ hands.
Where to Start? I recommend downloading any, since this is an easy podcast to duck in and out of.
I Hate it But I Love It
While this (primarly) movie-driven podcast isn’t new, it is new to me, and I have begun bingeing episodes at bedtime. There are FEW podcasts that make me laugh out loud (see also Yeah, It’s That Bad) but the incredible quick wit of hosts Kat Angus (editor for Buzzfeed) and Jocelyn Gedde (television writer and comedian) always make me smile, at the very least.
Each episode is a deep-dive into one film (a couple of television series have been covered as well) and the women break down their past experiences with the movie, their thoughts on the rewatch, if they would recommend checking it out, and a full recap of the plot (which is usually when I start cracking up.) You’re not going to see any Oscar-winning titles here…look for episodes covering the likes of Varisty Blues, Practical Magic, Scream, and The Net.
Where to Start? I recommend scanning the list and downloading the I Hate it But I Love It episodes that feature movies that you remember watching (and maybe liking).
True Crime Garage
Join Nic and The Captain from the garage in Columbus, Ohio, as they crack open a featured beer and embark on a thorough investigation and retelling of a true crime case, either solved and unsolved. Covering both famous and relatively unknown cases, the guys really do their research, presenting very in-depth coverage of the events, suspects, and timeline of the crimes. While some cases are presented in one to two episodes, some span four or more, really diving into the details. My hope with the popularity of true crime podcasts is that more people learn about unsolved cases, perhaps leading to their eventual solving. Nic and The Captain are generally good about warning about speaking of more gruesome details, so if you’re sensitive (like me) you can skip those episodes or segments.
Where to Start? If you’re looking for a particular case, there’s a good chance the guys have covered it, so just do a search on the True Crime Garage page. If you’re not sure where to begin, you might use this list as inspiration. Cases/episodes that have piqued my interest have been Brian Shaffer, Maura Murray, and Jennifer Kesse. I am always hopeful that the more ears hearing about unsolved cases, the more likely someone will remember something or have information helpful to law enforcement.
The Lazy Genius
Kendra Adachi reminds listeners (and readers) to be “smart about the things that matter, and lazy about the things that don’t”, and her job as podcast host, author, and Instagram queen is to guide us to living better lives. She covers such a wide variety of topics, it is hard to imagine NOT finding something that resonates – from cleaning the bathroom, to planning a capsule wardrobe, to creating traditions, to reading by season, each episode provides a clear-cut plan of action for making one aspect of your life easier and better! Episode #150 “A Pep Talk for Being Stuck” made me tear-up while doing dishes, and these bite-sized episodes are perfect listens while prepping dinner or doing another task.
Where to Start? Since each episode has one designated topic, I recommend looking through the list of shows and seeing which ones suit your current needs.
Sorta Awesome makes me super happy. Meg, Rebekah, and Kelly know how to put a smile on my face discussing all of the awesomes of life. Each show kicks off with an “awesome of the week” and the hosts tell listeners about ANYTHING that brought them joy that week – this could be a beauty product, a YouTube channel, a type of planner, or a recipe website…literally, anything. From there, they discuss the week’s topic – this could be of the lighter variety such as personality types, interesting true crime cases, seasonal must-lists, television shows, or go-to recipes, or veer heavier by exploring themes such as developing social skills, navigating quarantine, or overcoming analysis paralysis. I always come away from each episode with good ideas and/or products to check out, so this podcast is always on my recommended list.
Where to Start: I especially love their seasonal episodes (including the holiday gift guide) so maybe check out Awesome Summer List 2020 (episode #247) for some ideas on how to make this summer awesome since it’s going to look different for many of us. (As of writing this, I haven’t listened to this episode yet!)
If you have a podcast you love, please share in the comments! Happy listening!