Need more shade to be thrown!
August 26, 2013 7:47 AM   Subscribe

Exhausted current stock of non-fiction podcasts, more recommendations please? Tastes under the fold.

I've been through itunes and the old podcasts link but have got to the bottom of my current lists and would love some new ones!

I often use them to distract my mind, so needs to be interesting and 25 mins plus. I particularly like ones with a human interest or feminist slant. Generally not a fan of comedy, but love Throwing Shade and historically was a big fan of the Rickey Gervais ones.

More specifically:

Likes -

Savage Love
Throwing Shade
This American life
Stuff to blow your mind
How stuff works
Stuff mum never told you
Stuff you missed in history class
Double xx gabfest
Women's hour
World service documentary

Don't like -

Professor Blast off
Uhh Yeah dude
Jordan Jesse Go
& anything fiction!

Thank you!
posted by Albondiga to Media & Arts (23 answers total) 55 users marked this as a favorite
My Brother My Brother and Me! It's comedy but it is really, really good comedy and totally worth your time.
posted by something something at 7:48 AM on August 26, 2013 [3 favorites]

Yes to My Brother My Brother and Me. I'd really recommend checking out the rest of Maximum Fun podcasts in general if you enjoy Throwing Shade. Stop Podcasting Yourself is another one I love, just started Sawbones and like what I've heard so far (and I agree with you about Jordan Jesse Go).

I also listen to Julie Klausner's How Was Your Week religiously. Really, really great.
posted by goggie at 7:52 AM on August 26, 2013

My 'likes' list is almost identical to yours. I recently started tearing through the Sex Nerd Sandra archives and am also keeping up with Terrified and the Alton Browncast. All under the Nerdist umbrella.
posted by justjess at 7:53 AM on August 26, 2013

I enjoy NPR's Planet Money - it's a bit shorter, usually 20 minutes or so.
posted by Mary Ellen Carter at 8:01 AM on August 26, 2013 [2 favorites]

Do you like discussion of TV/movies/pop culture? If so, I highly recommend Previously.TV's Extra Hot Great. Caveat: it ran for quite a while, got really super-good, then ended (some of the hosts moved away, etc.). So it's just now starting back up, with the same crew plus one. This means no juicy backlog to dive into, but based on how much I loved its previous iteration, I don't hesitate to recommend the new version.

Also pop-culture-wise, I have enjoyed Mefi's Own Linda Holmes & Co's Pop Culture Happy Hour, which is NPR's pop-culture roundtable.
posted by theatro at 8:03 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

The Moth, Risk, and Strangers (from KCRW) are all true stories from people that lived them.

The Memory Palace is short, and updates rarely but listening to the archives is a glorious way to spend a commute.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:07 AM on August 26, 2013

Three history podcasts!
1) Backstory with the American History Guys (I think this will be perfect.)
2) A History of the World in 100 Objects
3) Thinking Allowed (okay, really more sociology. But there's some history in the mix.)

If you like the nonfiction storytelling aspect of This American Life, you might go for Snap Judgment. TAL occasionally picks up their content.
posted by Going To Maine at 8:27 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

How to Do Everything sounds like it fits in with your likes.
posted by Hey Judas! at 8:29 AM on August 26, 2013

I like Stuff You Should Know and Brain Stuff.
posted by kathrynm at 8:39 AM on August 26, 2013

In Our Time - the BBC podcast is amazing.
posted by mercredi at 8:40 AM on August 26, 2013

OK, here is the best one that you haven't heard of if you are a curious person who appreciates enthusiasm, quality, and thoroughness of subject coverage:

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History

(The baseball cap puts me off, really, and his voice is a little too...charismatic...for me to completely trust him, but I listen in spite of these things because the content is really, really good. He seems to have a ton of research behind each episode. He's not an academic's academic, but he's really got something going on. Just listen! It's art meets information, I think)


BBC History Extra podcast

BackStory (three US history professors focus on a current topic and how it developed through US history - one is the president of the University of Richmond)

You might like "Stuff You Missed in History Class", but please don't gravitate toward it just because it has "stuff" in the title :) The others have more depth and connection, I think.

Science Friday
posted by amtho at 8:54 AM on August 26, 2013 [2 favorites]

We have almost identical taste in podcasts. I'll recommend:

Answer Me This!
The BBC News Quiz (but not the Now Show, which is the same subscription)
Slate's Political Gabfest
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:09 AM on August 26, 2013

I'm here to second Pop Culture Happy Hour. But if you're tempted to find similar podcasts to it, avoid Slate's Culture Gabfest.

It tries to do the same thing as PCHH, but without the brio and chemistry that make PCHH such a pleasure to listen to every week.

If you're a fan of recent history, you might also like NPR's Playback podcast, which features curated stories from the current month, 25 years ago. It's a lot of fun.
posted by yellowcandy at 9:19 AM on August 26, 2013

I'm surprised Fresh Air isn't on your 'likes' list already, as it fits in very well to the items on there (at least the ones I know). There was an episode in the last year I think when Terri Gross interviewed Dan Savage, and it was like my podcast stars aligning.
posted by Leontine at 9:20 AM on August 26, 2013

I listen to a lot of podcasts and I have somewhat similar tastes to you. Ordered as they are on my ipod (which means the ones I've kept the longest are at the bottom):

Yo, is this racist? - Just discovered it the other day on mefi. Short daily episodes, but if you listen to a whole week's worth at once then it's long enough.
History of the World in 100 Objects - seconded.
Great Lives - biographies, BBC
Writers & Company - interviews with authors, CBC
From Our Own Correspondent - Half hour show with a bunch of short pieces by various -foreign correspondents from all around the world.
Backstory - seconded
Rexfactor - History of all the kings and queens of England. Hilarious.
Ideas - CBC, various topics, many would count as human interest. For a feminist slant one check out this episode: Madeleine Blair: Nobody's Victim
In Our Time: seconded
Spycast: all about spy topics
Slate Culture Gabfest: similar to other Slate podcasts
Slate Political Gabfest: seconded
Thinking Allowed: seconded
posted by carolr at 9:21 AM on August 26, 2013

Pretty much the only podcast I make time for is Roderick on the Line, which may or may not be your cup of tea and/or an acquired taste. What's it about? Hmmmm.
posted by baseballpajamas at 9:23 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

99% Invisible. It's about design, but saying that really gives no sense of the dimensions of the kinds of design they talk about. The last episode was about the I *heart* NY and the trademark thereof, but another episode is about the invention of the shot-clock in basketball to fix what was wrong with the broken gameplay design (which resulted in an NBA championship game playing to a score of 18-19 or something like that).

It's not always 25 minutes long, so listen to two of them-- there are not quite 90 episodes out there so you've got plenty of good back numbers.
posted by Sunburnt at 10:46 AM on August 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

Wait Wait Don't Tell Me and How to do Everything
posted by radioamy at 10:50 AM on August 26, 2013

NPR's On the Media (from WNYC), a weekly hour-long show about current controversies in Journalism, everything from efforts to deter coverage to journalist failures and faux pas where big events are concerned, and the business of journalism entities.
posted by Sunburnt at 11:10 AM on August 26, 2013

A History of the World in 100 Objects is pretty great, and seconding the Hardcore History recommendation (although Dan Carlin sounds a lot like Wallace Shawn's character from Princess Bride).
posted by Ham Snadwich at 12:03 PM on August 26, 2013

NPR's Ask Me Another is pretty good. Engines of our Enginuity is a mix of engineering, history and the personalities that shaped it.
posted by pwnguin at 8:31 PM on August 26, 2013

I listen to a ton of podcasts. Below is a list of the ones I like best.

Best of the Web: the MetaFilter podcast
The Irrelevant Show from CBC Radio
Friday Night Comedy from BBC Radio 4
Good Job Brain
The Memory Palace
New Yorker: Out Loud
New Yorker: The Political Scene
NPR: Fresh Air
NPR: Pop Culture Happy Hour
NPR: Snap Judgement
On The Media
The Organist
Slate's Culture Gabfest
Slate's Spoiler Specials
WTF with Marc Maron
99% Invisible
posted by marsha56 at 8:31 PM on August 26, 2013

Late to the game (Late to a computer, actually) but since you mention Rickey Gervais (and presumably the complicated joy of enjoying Karl Pilkington) here are a couple of suggestions.

The Dork Forest
Although because Jackie Kashian is a stand-up and most of the featured dorks are comics sometimes the dork-on-dork dialog drifts into showbiz inside baseball, these podcasts are mostly about something. The safest space on the internet has covered ice-climbing frozen waterfalls, Psychogeography, knitting, creating fonts for the Cherokee language so Cherokee elders can text, beekeeping, what it's like to be a Disney Imagineer, and more than a few on comic books and sci-fi authors.

To my mind, this episode has a feminist slant.

The old host had linky notes, but they are no notes at the new platform.

Sound quality is not always stellar and there are not many podcasts, yet I am going to recommend Lost Treasures of the Black Heart. Josie Long's live show from Camden features (Mostly UK) comedians doing short features about their favorite "treasures" and covers random topics ranging from cryptozoology, long-lost safari parks, the life and work of the author of what may have been the first prequel, and the life and times of a grave-robber. Sometimes in song!
posted by Lesser Shrew at 8:35 AM on August 31, 2013

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