I first got into podcasts when I started training for a half marathon last summer. Despite loving all the energy I’d get from my music playlists, running long distances could get quite… lonely. And you can only listen to the same Lizzo album on repeat for so long.
Nowadays, podcasts have become the background of my daily life – I listen to them during my commute, while I train, while I get ready to go out (ok, this was in the pre COVID-19 era), cook, do house chores, you name it! Here are my favourites so far:
Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend: comedian and TV host Conan O’Βrien interviews his favourite celebrity guests, having hearty (and utterly hilarious) one-to-one conversations. This came as a recommendation from a friend and saw me through a fairly dark phase that I went through last year so it’s the perfect go-to if you need a little pick-me-up. Favourite episodes: the ones with John Oliver, Paul Rudd (crush alert!) and Lisa Kudrow.
Table Manners: singer-songwriter Jessie Ware and her mother (yes, you read right) host this beautiful, feel-good podcast where they get to quiz celebrities from all walks of life – from rock starts to none else but the Mayor of London – about their favourite foods, childhood food memories, cooking skills and the infamous last meal request. Favourite episodes: David Schwimmer, Yotam Ottolenghi and Ed Sheeran.
Revisionist History: author Malcolm Gladwell investigates overlooked and often misunderstood historical events, people and ideas, “because sometimes the past deserves a second chance”. I had to stop myself from bingeing on this podcast after listening to 5 episodes in a row to avoid podcast fatigue so hopefully it will get you hooked too… Favourite episodes: Dr. Rock’s Taxonomy, Food Fight, My Little Hundred Million.
You’re Dead To Me: nope, not a podcast on vengeance and revenge. This is a history podcast (you’re starting to notice a pattern here, huh?) for people who don’t like history… or didn’t learn enough of it at school. Greg Jenner, a British author and public historian, brings together the crème de la crème of academia and comedy to cast light on historical events and figures. Favourite episodes: Josephine Baker, The Aztecs and Lord Byron.
Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness: JVN asks all the questions you might a bit ashamed to ask – but you’re dying to know about – and invites over experts from a plethora of different fields to answer them. Imagine everything from gender pay gap to geoengineering.
Also, a brilliant, heartfelt episode that made me want to listen to The Daily a bit more often – a magazine writer reflecting on her experience interviewing Tom Hanks.