Wisdom and Wit Straight to Your Brainbox
Good podcasts change your life. Seriously. They expose you to views and stories you might not otherwise encounter. They make you laugh, cry, or rush to the pub desperate to share a nugget of new-found wisdom with your mates. There’s something about the audio medium. It’s immersive and entrancing. Like eavesdropping on a really good conversation.
We’re a curious bunch here at Huckle. We always love a chat about culture and the human condition. To help you satisfy your curiosity, we’ve compiled this list of ten of our most-loved podcasts, covering music, health, relationships, history and humour. Despite the title, these are not necessarily the best podcasts. But they are our favourites.
Seasoned podcast listeners will be familiar with some of the shows on this list, but we hope you discover something new. If you’re a podcast virgin, lucky you. Prepare to have your mind blown. Choose a podcast app for your smartphone (Podcast Addict and Stitcher are good) and search by show name. Or download episodes direct from the shows’ websites which we’ve included below.
Enjoy the ride.
Adam Buxton is a familiar face (and voice). The British comedian was one half of the Adam and Joe partnership, fronting both a Channel 4 series and Radio 6 Music podcast back in the day. For this solo podcast series, Buxton has deep conversations, called ‘ramble chats’, with guests including Louis Theroux, Adam Curtis and Jonny Greenwood.
You listen to their music. Now learn more about the creative process and the people behind the tunes. This series features personal stories and insights from some of the world’s best artists. Iggy Pop, Bjork, Q-Tip, and George Clinton, to name but four. It’s like peaking around the curtain to discover how the magic is made.
Have you read the latest research on ageing, physical performance, brain health, cancer, and nutrition? Us neither. Dr Rhonda Patrick’s fantastic podcast breaks down the studies, and includes interviews with expert guests. An accessible format for some seriously meaty subjects. Scholarly insights that will help you optimise your health and minimise the risk of illness.
The story. The oldest form of entertainment known to humankind. The Moth is a live storytelling event: true stories told without notes. The podcast rounds up some of the best. Prepare to be moved, amazed and humbled by the courageous souls who share their tales. Listen to this, then get yourself to the live event (once a month in London).
Our wild card entry. We defy you not to laugh out loud. This serialised podcast story stars Jemaine Clement from Flight of the Conchords as a dimwitted aristocratic botanist. Tune in for surreal adventures in a fantastical world. The humour is off-the-wall, and the production places a big emphasis on lavish soundscapes.
If you’ve read Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, you’ll be familiar with the Canadian author’s fresh perspective on popular culture. In his podcast series he explores the hidden significance of historical moments, delving into the ‘overlooked and misunderstood’. Discover the real significance of Harry Enfield’s Loadsamoney character, and why in 1990 McDonald’s willingly ruined their french fries forever.
TED Talks are superb fodder for the mind, but it’s not always easy to find time to watch them. This podcast format weaves clips from the best talks with interviews with the people who gave them. Show themes include Beyond Tolerance, The Hero’s Journey and The Power of Design. Listen, absorb, and feel yourself getting a little bit more cleverer.
We like Russell Brand. He’s honest and has a lot of affection for us flawed humans. Now he’s back with this podcast series, and he’s more reflective and less combative than before. While studying for an MA in religion in global politics he’s been interviewing guests around important topics like ‘Can we really stop terror?’ and ‘Is democracy busted?’.
If the previous entry is the undergraduate course then perhaps Waking Up is the master’s degree (no offence, Russell). Sam Harris is a neuroscientist, philosopher, and best-selling author. Expect level-headed analysis of some of the most complex and contentious issues of our times. The world could do with more Sam Harriseseses.
Sex. A round-up of the best podcasts wouldn’t be complete without it. With this series you can listen in on unscripted consultation sessions with real couples. Esther Peral is a celebrated psychotherapist, author and speaker. Her best-selling book Mating in Captivity, examines the paradoxical relationship between sexual desire and domesticity in the modern world. For a happier, healthier love life.
That’s it guys. Happy listening. And please tell your barber what your favourite podcasts are. We’re always keen to discover new ones.