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People act like a podcast is a mystical unicorn that can’t be understood. I get it, I was there not to long ago, too. However, now I’m utterly obsessed with podcasts. People are always asking me what podcasts I listen to and quite frankly, I think they’re a little shocked when they see how all over the place my selections are. I’m going to share with you my top 10 podcast recommendations. But first, a little housekeeping…
What Is a Podcast?
A podcast is basically like a show on Netflix. There are seasons and episodes within the seasons. Instead of watching it, you listen to it. I travel quite a bit in the fall for work so I fill that time in the car with podcasts. Doing dishes, working out, on your commute — all great times to tune in to your favorite shows.
How Do I Listen to a Podcast?
This is the best part — there’s probably already an app on your phone! On the iPhone it’s called Podcasts and it has a purple icon. Android users have told me that Stitcher and Google Podcasts are popular. Just find a show you want to listen to and click an episode to listen! Easy peasy.
Top 10 Podcast Recommendations
My top 10 podcast recommendations list could not be more all over the place. We’ve got pop culture, bachelor recaps, liturgy, social issues, positivity, true crime, religion, Christianity, and so much more. Here’s the deal, I love to think of podcasts as a way to learn about things that you maybe wouldn’t have ever come into contact with any other way. Empathy can come through hearing another person’s story which is what a lot of these podcasts do so well. So without further ado, here are my top 10 podcast recommendations.
The Popcast with Knox and Jamie
From the Wundry network, The Popcast with Knox and Jamie is a pop-culture podcast (#onwednesdayswepopcast) that addresses any number of things including American’s best Jennifers to the Nos of Christmas. Knox’s wheezy laugh and Jamie’s bubbly, energetic personality have gotten me through a LOT of long road trips. In fact, they were the first podcast I ever listened to. I support them on Patreon to get their Bachelor/Bachelorette recaps. They’re so funny I may have crashed my car the other day while listening. Aaaand I may have had a dream I was at Jamie’s house helping her prepare for a live show, but let’s not tell them that.
From Gimlet, Mystery Show hosted by Starlee Kind, is such a fun, quirky podcast. Please don’t get too attached because there are only 6 episodes, but I loved it so much that I had to include it. Starlee does storytelling so very well. No matter what mystery they’re trying to solve, she wraps you into her story and has you rooting for her.
My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark
Where Mystery Show is tender and sweet, My Favorite Murder is the opposite. Hostesses Karen & Georgia talk about true crime, the victims, their families, and how society treats these crimes. It’s also hilarious at the same time – so hard to understand, I know. They are open with their struggles with addiction and mental health which has led thousands of people to seek help for their own issues. There are a lot of F words so if that’s not your jam, avoid this one.
The Liturgists Podcast
I’m going to show my cards a little bit here, but after some things that I experienced in the church, I was seeking answers to some big questions. The Liturgists Podcast asks the big questions that nobody else seems to ask. Science Mike, Christian turned atheist turned spiritual again, explains things from a scientific perspective. I don’t agree with everything they have to say here, but I appreciate their thoughtful approach to things like religion, race, gender, ability, and sexuality. I love their tagline, “We believe there is room at the table for all who are hungry.”
Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness
Do you watch Queer Eye on Netflix? Please say yes. It will restore your faith in humanity. You can’t imagine how excited I was to find out JVN had a gorg podcast! In each quick episode, he brings on an expert in a certain field and asks them questions about topics he’s interested in. Some of my favorites were episodes were “What White People Need to Know About Racism with Andrew Ti” and “How to Cut Suicide Rates Among LGBTQ Youth? with Amit Paley, CEO of The Trevor Project.
The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey
Each week Jamie brings a girlfriend on the show to talk about the big things in life, the little things in life, and everything in between. Many of her topics focus on race, equality, grace, and missions. She lives in Austin, TX with her adorable family and animals. Her podcasts are so uplifting and I love the variety of guests she has on the show.
Awesome with Alison
I can hardly say the title without singing her theme song! Alison is one-of-a-kind and proud of it! She focuses a lot on mindfulness, personal branding, managing thoughts of worry and anxiety, and gratitude. Her show is fun, quirky, and has rad music. PS She also has a son named Rad.
Up and Vanished
I’m so mad that millennial Payne Lindsey made me love this podcast! It’s an investigative podcast that explores the 2005 disappearance of Georgia beauty queen and high school teacher, Tara Grinstead. It takes you on a wild and bumpy road of suspects and theories. I really enjoyed it…and there might just be some real-life updates as a result of the awareness that was raised as part of this podcast.
Serial – Season 1
I’ve listened to both seasons of Serial, but I preferred season 1 to season 2. Season 1 is about the 1999 murder of Hae Min Lee, an 18-year-old student at Woodlawn High School in Baltimore, Maryland. Her then boyfriend, Adnan Syed, was charged sentenced to life in prison for her death. Host Sara Koenig interviews Adnan Syed in prison at length. To this day he maintains his innocence.
The Bible Binge
The same awesome people who brought you The Popcast, bring you The Bible Binge. Knox and Jamie take Bible stories in recap them as if they were a movie or TV show. Pure hilariousness. If they stray from the text, a resident Bible scholar offers a gentle rebuke in the name of Jesus. Christian upbringing or not, I think you’ll enjoy this podcast.
So there it is – my wonky, mis-matched list of top 10 podcast recommendations. Enjoy! I don’t have as much time as I’d like to read actual books, but here are a few of my favorite summer reads right now.