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Nov 07 2017
by Lillian Zhang

5 Podcasts You Should Start Listening To

By Lillian Zhang - Nov 07 2017

Podcasts have become trendy again! Once unpopular, they’ve become a new sensation for people of all ages especially for millennials. Instead of watching another Netflix episode, consider popping earbuds in for a listen on your way to class. Podcasts are not only easy to listen to, but there are endless genres or topics you could explore. You’ll hear stories, advice or conversation within each episode. Here are five podcasts that you should be listening to.

1. Learn something interesting: Stuff You Should Know, produced by HowStuffWorks

The show’s hosts Chuck Bryant and Josh Clark will invite you to learn about topics that you may have always wondered about but never bothered to investigate. They speak about a variety of topics, with episodes titled everything from “How Auto-Tune Works” to "How Dying Works” to "How Free Speech Works." Chuck and Josh are great hosts who know how to entertain the audience with jokes and even fictional stories while staying informative.


2. Laugh at something: 2 Dope Queens, produced by WNYC

This Brooklyn-based podcast is hosted by two female black comedians: Jessica Williams of The Daily Show and Phoebe Robinson of Broad City. In front of a live audience, Jessica and Phoebe hold frank discussions about sex, race, and New York life and merge that with funny stand-up comedy from diverse comedians, including comedians of color, and comedians who identify as LGBTQ.


3. Learn something about science: The Hilarious World of Depression, produced by HealthPartners

Who would’ve thought a show about clinical depression would be hilarious? The host, John Moe pieces together moving and frank stories from comedians and other funny people who have dealt with depression. The groundbreaking show attempts to lighten the loaded topic of depression that lifts the stigma and approaches how we converse about depression in a new light.


4. Learn something about politics: Pod Save America, provided by Crooked Media

Four former aides to President Obama come together in this podcast: Jon Favreau, Tommy vietor, Jon Lovett and Daniel Pfeiffer. They bring on guest speakers such as politicians or officials to discuss current topics relevant to Trump’s presidency, The Democratic Party or the U.S. Government. In addition to the freestyle discussion, there is also a call to action by the hosts for listeners to become more involved and active citizens.


5. Scream at something: Lore, produced by Aaron Mahnke

Aaron Mahnke hosts this show, where each episode focuses on a different part of American folklore and deeply investigates the topic by examining the historical context and details of the related event. With Mahnke’s focus on historical tales told in a style comparable to a campfire experience, and Halloween right around the corner, it seems appropriate to listen to an episode or two about human nature’s darker past.

Definitely give a listen to a podcast if you haven't yet! All of the podcasts can be streamed for free on either Spotify, American Public Media, YouTube or on their podcasts sites. In a media world where the commercial radio is populated with adverts and shows that cater to narrow demographics, podcasts are a breath of fresh air that serve as a creative and eclectic form of entertainment. Intimate and personalized to your interests, they reveal the beauty of traditional oral storytelling.

Lead Image Credit: Sabri Tuzcu via Unsplash

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Lillian Zhang - Barnard College

Lillian Zhang is a freshman at Barnard College who is undecided about her major and future. At her high school, she was the Features section editor for the school paper and was involved in leading and documenting "Give A Spit", a project that adds donors to the bone marrow registry. If she's not looking in the empty fridge waiting for food to suddenly materialize, you can find her taking serene walks in nature or listening to her Spotify playlists. Follow her on Instagram: @lillianzhanggg or (politically-charged) Twitter: @zhangliahs17

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