Ten Great Podcasts You Need to Hear


I’ve written about my favorite podcasts more than once, but great podcasts pop up all the time, so I’ll take every opportunity I can to spread the love. This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is an audio freebie and I have some new favorites to gab about. I could pretty much fill up a top ten list with just the political nonsense I’ve been listening to lately, but I’ll try to spread the subjects out a bit (you’re welcome!).

NPR’s Code Switch

Super insightful, timely discussions about race and culture that can be both heartbreaking and hilarious but always feel honest. The recent episode on Nate Parker was particularly great.

Slate’s Double X

Bi-weekly-ish news, pop culture, and a bit of everything else from a feminist perspective.

Keepin’ It 1600

I’ve mentioned it before, but this podcast is keeping me sane through this election! President Obama’s former speechwriter and policy advisor break down the week’s events and Trump-isms.

Slate’s Amicus

Supreme Court! As it happens, which means a new season just started (with a great episode on Notorious RBG).

The Watch

There’s still a Grantland-sized hole in my heart, but this is working to fill it with smart TV commentary and doing a pretty great job.

What’s the Point

You may not think you’re a data nerd, but this podcast will convince you otherwise. There’s even a fabulous episode all about book publishing!

Radiolab’s More Perfect

More Supreme Court, but this time it’s all about the historical perspective. If you’re already a fan of Radiolab, you won’t be let down.

Still Buffering

So much fun, so much nostalgia! A pair (now trio!) of sisters with a huge age gap talk about the way things are (or were). Don’t miss the Lin-Manuel Miranda episode, Hamilfans.

Coming Soon! Grapple

I’m cheating on this last one because it hasn’t started yet (though there is a trailer), but it sounds fantastic. It’s focused on distressed communities and economic change, with the first season digging into towns across Pennsylvania.

I’ve also mentioned my love for PocketCasts before, but I’m going to give the app another shoutout. PocketCasts is loaded with a ton of bells and whistles, but my favorite is its discovery feature. I’ve found so many great podcasts (almost everything on this list!) thanks to their curated lists and can’t recommend it enough.

What podcasts are you listening to lately?


  • Sooo many goodies on this list! Code Switch, What’s The Point, and More Perfect are all wonderful, and I’ve been enjoying digging in deeper to Amicus and Keepin’ It 1600.

    I really like the podcast manager I use (BeyondPod), but it doesn’t have a discovery feature! At least not that I know about. It has categories, but nothing like curated lists.

    If you haven’t listened before, Otherhood is great! I discovered it right around when I was packing to move, and it helped keep me from going nuts and accidentally sealing myself into a box.

    • I don’t think I’ve listened to Otherhood, so I definitely need to get on that! I lovvvvee anything I can just listen to for hours on end.

      • You will definitely like Otherhood! I actually posted about a slew of podcasts today, too (you might have inspired me).

  • Karen

    I don’t know any of these but then I have enough of a struggle keeping up with just the book related ones. My version of top 10 will thus be rather different to yours

    • I started out listening exclusively to book podcasts, but when I realized there were so many based on specific interests I kept adding and adding…I don’t think I really listen to anything bookish regularly anymore!

  • Oh man – there’s a Grantland-sized hole in my heart as well!!! I’m filling it with as much content from The Ringer as possible! I listen to Keepin’ it 1600 and also love Juliet Litman’s stuff on Channel 33 (particularly Bachelor Party and Jam Session with Mallory Rubin) and Bill Simmons’ occasional pods with Malcolm Gladwell on The Bill Simmons Report.

    Of course – Grapple sounds fascinating in light of my recent read of Hillbilly Elegy…which I tried desperately to finish last night, but couldn’t stay awake. I’m at 95% and will finish it today.

  • Kailana

    I like Podcasts, but I never seem to work them in. I typically listen to audios and that is about it. I really should find some time for them!

  • TheShrinkette

    I go through phases of audiobook and podcast listening, and since I haven’t felt like picking up a physical book in the last couple of days, this is such a great time to try out all of these podcasts! What’s The Point sounds like it’s right up my alley. Thanks for these!

    • What’s the Point is SO GOOD – they did a whole series of 15 min episodes on gun control a few weeks back that was pretty incredible.

  • I have gotten so into podcasts this year, so YAY now I have some recommendations. I’m currently obsessed with My dad Wrote a Porno podcast. It’s hilarious.

  • I’m so glad you’re still enjoying Slate’s Double-X podcast! Have you tried their Political podcast? John Dickerson is great and they get agitated, especially this year!

    I am now loving Keeping’ it 1600 even though they scare me with their unbridled enthusiasm. I wish I was that secure in my belief that Hillary has this locked up. Thank you for recommending it, though, it means I don’t have to look at any other political news (except for 538).

    • Slate’s Politics pod is one of my original faves – love John Dickerson!

      I’m with you on 1600’s confidence! Sometimes they get me pumped up (they seem to know their stuff!) but other times I’m just freaked out by how sure they are.

  • I’m sure you already know this but just in case not: Wesley Morris (formerly of Grantland, now with the New York Times) has a new podcast with Jenna Wortham called Still Processing. It’s brand brand new, and as far as I know they only have two episodes out thus far, but it’s reeeeally good. Recommended!

  • Pingback: Reading Wrap-Up and Library Checkout: September 2016 - River City Reading()