March 17, 2016

My Favorite Podcasts

Being a podcast host, I am often asked, “What are your favorite podcasts?” The surprising answer is that ever since starting MtnMeister there isn’t much “podcast time” in my schedule! I don’t have a consistent commute, and I don’t listen to anything when I run.

Still, there’s always time for competitive analysis. Below is a list of my podcasts in the order of those that I listen to most. If you already listen to any of these, you might notice the influence on MtnMeister’s production.

1. Freakonomics Radio

Description: The hidden side of everything. Each week, hear surprising conversations that explore the riddles of everyday life and the weird wrinkles of human nature—from cheating and crime to parenting and sports.
What I like: They explore uncomfortable and emotional topics and use data to draw conclusions. Many people think economics is boring, but this show adds some spice. Great music too.
Recommended episode: Which Came First, Chicken or Avocado?

2. Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!

Description: NPR’s weekly hour-long quiz program. Each week on the radio you can test your knowledge against some of the best and brightest in the news and entertainment world while figuring out what’s real news and what’s made up.
What I like: Consistently hilarious. This, perhaps sadly, is a main source of news for me. My favorite panelist is Brian Babylon.

3. Serial

Description: Serial unfolds one story – a true story – over the course of a whole season. The show follows the plot and characters wherever they lead, through many surprising twists and turns.
What I like: I listen to this mainly to fit in. Other than that, the show is captivating, and it’s amazing that the host, Sarah Koenig, tells the story without ultimately knowing what will happen.

4. Arming the Donkeys

Description: Duke economist and New York Times best-selling author Dan Ariely is your host for a weekly series of informal one-on-one chats with researchers in social and natural sciences.
What I like: Dan Ariely is the host, and I’m a huge fan. He researches human behavior and is the author of the must-read, Predictably Irrational. In the podcast, he talks with researchers. If you aren’t interested in the topic, you’ll probably find it dry.
Recommended episode: Can Money Buy Happiness?

5. TED Radio Hour

Description: A journey through fascinating ideas: astonishing inventions, fresh approaches to old problems, new ways to think and create. Based on Talks given by riveting speakers on the world-renowned TED stage, each show is centered on a common theme.
What I like: Top-notch production value, smart people, great host. I’m sure it takes a ton of work to make an episode. 
Recommended episode: Champions

6. Intelligence Squared

Description: Oxford-style debate to America – one motion, one moderator, two panelists for the motion and two against. Intelligence Squared U.S. brings together the world’s leading authorities on the day’s most important issues.
What I like: If I’m in the right mood (long car rides where I’m not sleepy), these are interesting and even funny. Nothing like hearing smart people getting so worked up that they act immature.
Recommended episode: It’s Time to End the War on Drugs

7. On Being

Description: On Being with Krista Tippett takes up the big questions of meaning with scientists and theologians, artists and teachers — some you know and others you’ll love to meet.
What I like: Krista Tippett is an incredible interviewer. Some of these are too deep for me so I pick and choose based on the guests and topics.
Recommended episode: Pursuing Happiness

8. OIA's Audio Outdoorist

Description: Dig deep into the issues facing outdoor brands and retailers, from domestic vs. international manufacturing to brick-and-mortar vs. online commerce.
What I like: I’m the host so naturally I subscribed. It’s fun to talk to brands that I know as a consumer about business. In learning the challenges that companies face in this industry, I have gained an appreciation for how much work goes into servicing play.
Recommended episode: United By Blue

9. MtnMeister

Description: MtnMeister is the podcast that explores the minds of those who explore. Conversations with climbers, runners, hikers, and other adventurers about topics that transcend sport.
What I like: What’s not to like?! The reason my podcast is last on this list is because by the time I research the interviewee, record the interview, and edit, I rarely play it again. I’ve already listened to it at least three times by that point!
Recommended episode: Outdoors athlete sponsorships


Questions? Comments? Let's hear 'em.