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NPR's Earbud.fm Newsletter Archive

Join the earbud.fm mailing list, and get podcasts every weekend.

Illustration by Annette Elizabeth Allen/NPR

Earbud.fm is NPR's friendly guide to great podcasts. Each of the episodes in this app was hand-picked for you by a listener or a radio/podcast pro. It's like getting recommendations from a couple hundred of your savviest friends. If you want to keep up with us as we add new episodes, sign up here for our newsletter. You'll hear from us once a week, every Saturday morning. You can also read through our archives below.


X-Men 101 And Comic Maria Bamford

Newsletter No. 25, May 21, 2016

Do you know what retconning is? Listen to this week's podcasts to find out.

Have 10 Minutes?

The Adaptors: "Born In The Anthropocene"
"This is a podcast about adapting to climate change, but don't let the sober subject matter deter you. Flora Lichtman tackles dismal topics — everything from drought and overpopulation to rats taking over the Earth — with such humanity and humor, you'll almost forget she's talking about mass extinction."
— Recommended by Beth Novey, producer, NPR Arts, Books & Culture

Have 30 Minutes?

Jay And Miles X-Plain The X-Men: "The Strangest Podcast Of Them All"(Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Jay and Miles X-Plain the X-Men is the perfect podcast for anyone who wants to dig into Marvel's long-running series but is terrified by half a century's worth of the most complicated continuity in comics (so, basically me). Start at the beginning; by the time Jay refers to retconning as 'the X-men's second mutant power,' you'll be hooked. And yes, they'll explain retconning."
— Recommended by Petra Mayer, editor, NPR Books

Have more than an hour?

Mental Illness Happy Hour: "Maria Bamford"
"This podcast talks about things that are normally discussed in whispers or not at all. It brings the humanity into mental health issues and helps people all along the mental health spectrum not feel so alone. Guest Maria Bamford captures depression so well and with such humor." For adult listeners.
— Recommended by Lisa Taylor, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Jenna Weiss-Berman.


The (Actual) Book Of Mormon

Newsletter No. 24, May 14, 2016

Hi guys,

Here's what we're listening to this week:

Have 30 minutes?

Breakdown: "Death In A Hot Car: Mistake Or Murder?" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"The Atlanta Journal-Constitution tries its hand at the Serial format, telling the story of a crime and its trial over the course of one season. Season two focuses on a father who left his young son in a hot car, leading to boy's death. But was it an accident or was it murder? Host Bill Rankin, the paper's senior legal affairs writer, guides listeners through the evidence."
— Recommended by Nicole Cohen, producer, NPR Arts, Books & Culture

Have an hour?

Oh No, Ross And Carrie!: "Ross And Carrie Go Mormon (Part 1): And It Came To Pass"
"Like The X-Files with two Scullys, these friends investigate spirituality, fringe science and paranormal claims. They are funny, fair and informative."
— Recommended by Erin Torreyson, listener

Have more than an hour?

The Champs: "Wyatt Cenac"
Hosted by comedians Neal Brennan and Moshe Kasher, The Champs is usually a funny interview podcast, but this conversation with comic Wyatt Cenac stands out for being mostly serious. Listener Maya Hislop says, "I love the thoughtful and calm way that Cenac details the difficult events from his childhood."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Nicole Cohen, Rose Friedman & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Jenna Weiss-Berman.


Parenting Fails And Favorite Records

Newsletter No. 23, May 7, 2016

Here's the weekend line-up:

Have 15 minutes?

Phonographic Memory: "All Aboard The Soul Train With Todd Inoue" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)"Phonographic Memory is a very cool live event series where people bring a record from their collection that has some special meaning to them, and play it for everyone to hear. It's particularly delightful because the people telling the stories aren't particularly rehearsed or vetted, and yet the stories are still super tight, concise, and engaging, and not too long!"
— Recommended by Anne Wootton, co-founder and CEO, Pop Up Archive

Have 40 minutes?

Mom And Dad Are Fighting: "The Your Own Personal Fantasyland Edition"
Slate's Allison Benedikt and Dan Kois talk about the family theme-park experience and how to give your kid an allowance. Listener Christina Martinson says the hosts "aren't afraid to share their personal failures and real opinions about the hard-to-navigate world of modern parenting."

Have an hour?

State Of The Re:Union: "The Hospital Always Wins"
"A riveting account of one man's experience in a mental hospital, this episode is a fascinating exploration of mental illness, in terms of both treatment and personal experience."
— Recommended by Hélène Lupa, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Nicole Cohen, Rose Friedman & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Jenna Weiss-Berman.


¡Ay Vey!

Newsletter No. 22, April 30, 2016

We mark the end of Passover with an episode about Jews in Latin America (and also a huge plate of pasta).

Have 30 minutes?

The Treatment: "Ava DuVernay: Selma"Actor Wendell Pierce says he loves Elvis Mitchell's The Treatment with its "in-depth interviews of major artists of the day." This episode from a few years back is a great conversation about finding your voice.

Have An Hour?

Latino USA: "¡Ay Vey! Being Jewish And Latino" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"We are all strangers in a strange land, so imagine my delight at hearing Latino USA talk about the richness of the Jewish diaspora in Latin America. My people! Lime and Cilantro in our Bubbe's chicken soup! As per usual, they tell a rich, multifaceted story about Latino culture. Plus, the music is awesome."
— Recommended by Rebecca Lehrer, co-host of The Mash-Up Americans

Have More Than An Hour?

RISK!: "The Best Of RISK! 7"
This live show and podcast features some epically NSFW storytelling. Listener Paul Jorgenson recommends starting with this "Best Of" episode. He says Rachel Rosenthal's story "Identity Thief" is "one of the most touching and poignant stories I've ever heard." For adult listeners.

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!

Beth Novey, Nicole Cohen & Rose Friedman
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Jenna Weiss-Berman.


Here's A Podcast That Will Put You To-ZZZZZZZZZ

Newsletter No. 21, April 23, 2016

For once, you snooze, you win! This week we've added a podcast that's designed to put you to sleep. Hope you're not operating any heavy machinery!

Have Half An Hour?

The Seams: "American Style At Versailles And The Short, Fast Life Of Luxury Fashion"
"It's about fashion history, fashion symbolism and culture, and stories about personal style. Everything's really heartfelt. I dig it. My favorite episode tells the story of this wild OG fashion show held at Versailles in 1973 with five American designers and five French designers. Liza Minnelli performed!"
— Recommended by Chelsea Wolfe, singer-songwriter

Have An Hour?

Sleep With Me: "Explainers Of Catan" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"This podcast is designed to bore you to sleep — and it works! This episode is apparently a story about two people learning the rules of the board game Settlers of Catan, but I've never stayed awake long enough to hear that part. Like I said, it works."
— Recommended by Serri Graslie, Editorial Specialist, NPR Training

Have More Than An Hour?

You Made It Weird: "Harris Wittels Returns"
"Pete Holmes likes to talk for hours with comedians (and, increasingly, spiritual leaders and other non-comedians) about comedy, relationships and God. It's fascinating. This episode with the late Harris Wittels is heartbreaking, brutally honest, raw and real but will still make you laugh out loud."
— Recommended by Melissa Marin, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


What Lin-Manuel Miranda Listened To As A Teen

Newsletter No. 20, April 16, 2016

Hi! We're back with more podcasts for your weekend. Have at it!

Have 30 Minutes?

StartUp Podcast: "Another Side Of The Story"
StartUp explores what it's really like to start a business — in this case, a match-making app called Dating Ring. All Things Considered host Ari Shapiro says this episode — about the challenges faced by two female co-founders — "is a must-listen for anyone who is a man. Or a woman. Or neither/both."

Have An Hour?

Music Popcast: "Lin-Manuel Miranda On How Hip-Hop Influenced Him and 'Hamilton'" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"This podcast has broadened and deepened my knowledge of music. I enjoy the enthusiasm of the hosts and being introduced to artists I never would have known of otherwise. In this episode, Lin-Manuel Miranda discusses how hip-hop influenced him and his musical, Hamilton . It's like Rap 101."
— Recommended by Madonna Nianwan, listener
(Ed. Note: Panelist Anne Wootton also recommends this Music Popcast episodewith songwriter Poo Bear)

Have A Little More Than An Hour?

The Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show: "USA Memory Champion Nelson Dellis"
Listener Kelli Mehan says she was captivated by this interview with a U.S. memory champion. "The tips and techniques are mind-blowing," she says. "Jeff Rubin's podcast description — 'interviews you didn't know you wanted to hear' — is always spot on, and especially this episode."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


How To Catch A Liar

Newsletter No. 19, April 9, 2016

Happy Saturday! Time for some podcasts:

Have 15 minutes?

Criminal: "Pants On Fire"
"A fascinating look at how to catch liars — and on how memory works overall. I loved how the interview techniques they mention, designed to catch someone in a lie, lead to great storytelling when you're dealing with someone who's telling the truth. Great tip for a radio maker like myself!"
Recommended by Nadia Reiman, senior producer, StoryCorps

Have 45 minutes?

Design Matters With Debbie Millman: "Dani Shapiro" (Newly added toearbud.fm!)
"The celebrated novelist, memoirist and author of the superb Still Writing: The Pleasures and Perils of a Creative Life discusses the experience of growing up in an Orthodox Jewish family, her ongoing quest to master the art of presence, and the interplay of courage and vulnerability necessary for being an artist."
— Recommended by Maria Popova, founder of Brain Pickings (more of her favorite podcasts here)

Stranded in an airport for the next two and a half hours?

The Attaboy Clarence Podcast: Classic Movies & Old Time Radio:"Heavenly Creatures"
Adam Roche wasn't a radio professional when he started recording his thoughts on old movies and the system that created them. But listener Kayte VanScoy loves Roche's creation: "It's a perfect blend of humor, information, celebrity, and old Hollywood glamour. Pure entertainment!"

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Good Wolf Vs. Bad Wolf And A Tribute To RBG

Newsletter No. 18, April 2, 2016

It's spring! Grab your headphones, get outside, and listen to some podcasts.

Have 20 minutes?

First Day Back: "Getting Back Out There"
"Tally Abecassis has managed to articulate the lingering anxiety that so many women feel about raising children and going back to work. The 'how-did-I-get-here' narrative of the first episode is funny, and somehow both subtle and brutally honest."
— Recommended by Nathalie Senécal, listener

Have 45 minutes?

The One You Feed: "Roland Merullo" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
The hosts start each episode with the parable about the good and evil wolves that are inside us all, then ask guests how they feed their good wolves. Listener Kerrie Lirosi says this episode with author Roland Merullo is full of "touching, down-to-earth, accessible wisdom."

Have more than an hour?

Baby Geniuses: "Guy Branum / Nate Fernald"
"Baby Geniuses is my favorite comedy podcast, and this episode features comedian Guy Branum's tribute to Ruth Bader Ginsburg and her husband, Martin, which is by turns informative, touching, funny and riveting."
— Recommended by Jacob Haller, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!

Beth Novey, Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Could you run down your own dinner?

Newsletter No. 17, March 19, 2016

Can you outrun an antelope? Scott Carrier and his brother tried:

Have 15 minutes?

Home Of The Brave: "Running After Antelope"
"Scott Carrier is one of the radio geniuses whose sometimes-bizarre, sometimes-totally-out-there pieces helped give public radio its soul in the early days. He's an independent radio producer and wanderer who has a totally unique approach and distinctive voice he brings to everything he does."
— Recommended by Tamara Keith, NPR White House correspondent

Have 30 minutes?

Whistlestop: "Vote For Muskie Or He'll Cry"
"CBS Face the Nation host/Slate Political Gabfest panelist/shoe-leather reporter John Dickerson recounts key turning points from presidential campaign history with his proprietary blend of charm, wit, earnestness and insight."
— Recommended by Glen Weldon, panelist, Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast

Have 45 minutes?

Tumanbay: "A Head Start" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Love, war, and backstabbing: Is there a better combination, at least when it comes to drama?Tumanbay is an epic 10-part series, produced for BBC Radio 4 but available in the United States as a podcast. You'll be glad of the chance to rewind, because it's a complicated story with dozens of characters. Start at the beginning, with "A Head Start," and don't be surprised if you don't stop listening until the finale's last plot twist."
— Recommended by June Thomas, panelist on DoubleX Gabfest

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Nicole Cohen, Beth Novey & Rose Friedman
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Who Wouldn't Want Richard III In Goal?

Newsletter No. 16, March 5, 2016

Hello!

This week, we meet someone who has never been online, we take a deep dive into evolution and we imagine the ultimate Shakespearean NHL team. Enjoy!

Have 10 minutes?

TLDR: "The Unicorn"
P.J. Vogt and Alex Goldman take listeners on journeys into the world of the Internet. In this episode, the two attempt to find someone who has never experienced the Web. Listener Zoe Weinstein says "there are many, many people without Internet, but finding one in New York City was amazing; even more amazing was the amazing reaction the man had to YouTube."

Have 30 minutes?

No Holds Bard: "The Shakespearean Hockey League" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Dan Beaulieu and Kevin Condardo, two smart-aleck Bostonian theater guys now living in NYC, love Shakespeare. They also love sports. In this episode, they draft a fantasy hockey league based on Shakespeare — and it's the perfect amount of absurd."
— Recommended by Drew Broussad, co-host/producer, So Many Damn Books podcast
Ed. note: This is a particularly zany hockey/Shakespeare mashup episode, while the other episodes of the show tend to stick to more to the Shakespearean stuff.

Have an hour?

StarTalk Radio: "StarTalk Live! Evolution With Richard Dawkins (Part 1)"
"Neil deGrasse Tyson, Bill Nye and Richard Dawkins are by far the best at making science understandable to anyone. This episode has all three, plus three great comedians. I haven't ever laughed so hard and learned so much at the same time."
— Recommended by Robert Ray, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Who Knew Squirrel Monkeys Were Such Picky Eaters?

Newsletter No. 15, Feb. 27, 2016

Hi guys!

This week: squirrel monkeys who enjoy Hawaiian papayas over Mexican papayas, and cringe-worthy teen angst.

Have 15 Minutes?

The Specialist: "The Zoo Chef" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
Who cooks for all the animals at the zoo? That's the kind of question Casey Miner tries to answer in each episode of her podcast. Listener Paula Newman says she enjoyed the humor and "air of irreverence" in this interview with two animal chefs (that is, chefs for animals).
— Recommended by Paula Newman, listener

Have 30 Minutes?

A Tiny Sense Of Accomplishment: "Why Do You Always Write About White People?"
"Authors — and friends — Sherman Alexie and Jess Walter convene to talk about all sorts of things, writing included. Their conversations often touch on diversity in literature, and this episode opens with a provocative question: whether writers can (or should) write about other races, genders and cultures."
— Recommended by Nicole Cohen, producer, NPR Arts, Books & Culture

Have An Hour?

Harmontown: "Sand Pollution: The Journals Of Young Morrissey"
"Dan Harmon, creator of TV's Community, shares excerpts from the journal he kept as a teenager. This episode is a cringe-worthy yet hilarious window into universal teenage experiences, and Harmon's self-mockery is humanizing and delightfully endearing."
— Recommended by Em Fitz, listener

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Beth Novey, Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Here Are Your Weekend Must-Listens

Newsletter No. 14, Feb. 20, 2016

Hey guys,

We have some really great stories for you this weekend. Take a long walk. Do three loads of laundry. Drive to another state. Whatever you do, take these podcasts with you.

Have 15 Minutes?

Radio Diaries: "Strange Fruit: Voices Of A Lynching"
"Radio Diaries creator Joe Richman cuts together interviews, often self-recorded, to let people tell stories in their own words. The non-narrated style is intimate, like inhabiting someone else's brain. In this episode, witnesses of a famous 1930 lynching in Indiana talk about what it was like that day."
— Recommended by Anne Wootton, co-founder and CEO, Pop Up Archive

Have An Hour?

Israel Story: " Love Syndrome" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Israel Story has modeled itself on This American Life, and like TAL, the show finds slice-of-life stories that have something — albeit sometimes just a touch — to do with Israel. This episode wound through so many complicated human experiences, then surprised — well, actually sort of shocked — me in the end."
— Recommended by Emily Harris, NPR International Correspondent, Jerusalem

Have Two Hours?

Hardcore History: "Wrath of the Khans I"
"Dan Carlin has a way of not just telling history, but illuminating it. History is not a series of isolated, past events, but the foundations of the world we live in today. In 'Wrath of the Khans,' Carlin not only shows us the raw, unedited history of Mongolian conquest, but also how it is reflected in the patterns that we see repeated a millennium later." (Note: This is the first in a five-part series)
— Recommended by Chris Hadfield, astronaut

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Nicole Cohen, Beth Novey & Rose Friedman
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Anne Wootton.


Podcasts You'll Luuuuuuuuuv

Newsletter No. 13, Feb. 13, 2016

True story: Back when we were looking for a name for this thing, earbud was almost named "NPR's Podcast Cupid." Hey, we all make mistakes. But we promise you won't regret listening to these podcasts. Happy Valentine's Day!

Have 10 Minutes?

StoryCorps: "Danny And Annie Perasa"
After more than 20 years of marriage, a couple recounts how their first date turned into an on-the-spot marriage proposal. Hot Pod editor Nicholas Quah says, "This sublime recording embodies the mission and value behind StoryCorps, the nonprofit oral history project that evokes the spirit of the legendary Studs Terkel."

Have 45 Minutes?

Love + Radio: "Thank You, Princess"
An online dominatrix, who specializes in humiliation, explains her job. Podcaster Alex Blumberg says, "She's such an engaging interview subject, and the interview goes to some totally surprising, human and hopeful places. Especially at the end where it takes a turn I wouldn't have imagined." For adult listeners.

Have An Hour?

Half Hour Intern: "Cuddle Therapy" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Half Hour Intern interviews interesting people about their jobs or hobbies. Host Blake Fletcher has a great way of connecting with guests that often leads to really candid conversations. Fletcher asks professional cuddler Travis Sigley some provocative questions about sexuality, boundaries and being in a relationship as a cuddle therapist."
— Recommended by listener Dave Irwin

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Love,
Beth Novey, Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


So how exactly does a conjugal visit work?

Newsletter No. 12, Feb. 6, 2016

Hey guys,

Hope you had a great week. We heard from a few of you that you wanted a way to go back and look through old newsletters. No problem! If you ever want to dive into the archives, you can look right here . (We'll include that link in our newsletters from now on.)

Anyway, housekeeping aside, here are this week's reccs:

Have 20 Minutes?

Life Of The Law: "One Conjugal Visit"

Every other week, a team of producers explores a new way the law touches ordinary lives. Oregon Public Broadcasting's Julie Sabatier says this episode is "a very matter-of-fact yet intimate look at how conjugal visits work."

Have 45 Minutes?

Mom And Dad Are Fighting: "The Your Own Personal Fantasyland Edition"

Slate's Allison Benedikt and Dan Kois talk about the family theme-park experience and how to give your kid an allowance. Listener Christina Martinson says the hosts "aren't afraid to share their personal failures and real opinions about the hard-to-navigate world of modern parenting."

Have An Hour?

So Many Damn Books: "Saeed Jones" (Newly add ed to earbud.fm!)

In this episode, hosts Christopher Hermelin and Drew Broussard talk with BuzzFeed culture editor Saeed Jones. Listener Mark Spencer says this podcast has gone from being "two kind-of-weird dudes talking about books to two still-pretty-weird dudes talking with authors not only about their books, but about a book they really love. It's the sort of conversation you wish could happen in your living room."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Beth Novey , Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


What's Julia Stiles Listening To?

Newsletter No. 11, Jan. 30, 2016

First off, thanks so much for sending your thoughts about the newsletter. It's fun putting this thing together every week, but newsletters can be kind of a weird one-way street, and it was really great to hear from you guys. If you ever have anything you want to share with us — questions/critiques/knock-knock jokes — you can always reach us at earbud@npr.org . We love hearing from you. And now, without further ado:

Have 10 minutes?

ARRVLS: "Two Doves"
Julie Sparenberg recounts meeting the love of her life — and his daughter — while she was mourning a big loss. Listener Naazish YarKhan says, "What I loved about this episode is how in a single conversation the narrator knew that she would marry the man she had just spoken to."

Have Half An Hour?

The Mash-Up Americans: "Getting Down With Our Genome" (Newly add ed to earbud.fm!)
"The Mash-Up Americans is a lively, optimistic exploration of multicultural life in the U.S. Hosts Amy S. Choi and Rebecca Lehrer find humor in the occasional misunderstanding, all the while celebrating how all of us are enriched by exploring our deep cultural roots. The recipes are pretty delicious, too. It makes me laugh, but I also feel like I'm constantly learning."

— Recommended by Julia Stiles, actress

Have More Than An Hour?

The Music Snobs: "Michael"

"The Music Snobs is a four-man roundtable that goes deep on one artist or concept at a time, with a focus on putting contemporary, black music forms into historical context. The Michael Jackson episode has a long middle section on the so-called 'black male identity crisis' of the 1980s, and it is riveting."
— Recommended by Daoud Tyler-Ameen, NPR Music

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Rose Friedman , Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


So, how's this going for you?

Newsletter No. 10, Jan. 23, 2016

Hey earbudders,

We've been at this newsletter thing for a few months now, and we thought it would be a good time to check in with you. So? How's it going? Is this working for you? How do you feel about the format? Does the Saturday delivery fit well with your schedule? Are these suggestions helpful when you're looking for something to listen to? What would you like to see more of/less of?

We want to hear from you! Drop us a line at earbud@npr.org and tell us what the podcast newsletter of your dreams would look like. We're all ears!

Have a great weekend,

Beth Novey, Nicole Cohen & Rose Friedman
Producers of earbud.fm


Love Hotels! Siberia! The Bus Passengers From 'Speed'!

Newsletter No. 9, Jan. 16, 2016

Hey!

We're back with some new recommendations. Here you go!

Have A Half Hour (And Speak Spanish?) Try:

Fuera De Contexto: "El Arquitecto Del Amor/The Architect Of Love" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"These two designers from Mexico City were clearly meant to launch a podcast — they have a fun, engaging chemistry as co-hosts of this show, which is dedicated to highlighting stories about design in Mexico and beyond. This episode struck me as especially interesting and lively because it's about the love motel industry in Mexico City. These motels are a staple in most Latin American cities, and are usually seen as seedy, despicable places. But in this episode they talk to a designer/architect duo who decided to use their know-how to turn 'hoteles de paso' (hotels for a quick stop) into 'hoteles de amor' (love hotels)."
— Recommended by Martina Castro, senior producer, Radio Ambulante

Have An Hour? Try:

Benjamen Walker's Theory Of Everything: "Occupy Siberia (Dislike Club Prequel)"
"After a five-part series about what's terrible about social media, Benjamen Walker revisited this story in which he trains aspiring Siberian journalists to use social media, with surprisingly violent results. Part personal diary, part radio drama, this episode is long, but worth the listen."
— Recommended by Ariel Zambelich, editor, NPR Visuals

Have More Than An Hour? Try:

I Was There Too: "Speed With The Passengers Of Bus 2525"
Remember the 1994 movie Speed? This episode follows up with some of the actors who played characters on that ill-fated bus. Listener Maura O'Leary recommends this podcast, in which "the excellent Matt Gourley interviews actors who played smaller parts in iconic movies."

As always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us. And if you have any feedback about what you'd like to see more of in this newsletter drop us a line at earbud@npr.org.

Happy listening,
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help fromearbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


New Year's Resolution: MORE PODCASTS!

Newsletter No. 8, Jan. 9, 2016

Finally! A New Year's resolution you can stick to. Here are some recommendations to get you started.

Have 15 Minutes? Try:

Note To Self: "Seriously, Listen To Your Voicemail"
After her father's sudden death, writer Leslie Horn makes the case for good, old-fashioned voicemail. "This episode makes a tech show about more than tech," says listener Steven Thrasher. "It becomes about emotion."

Have An Hour? Try:

Dead Authors Podcast: "Walt Whitman, Featuring James Adomian"
"James Adomian nails Walt Whitman's distinctive cadence, and gives him a skewering that manages to feel simultaneously fond and gleefully disrespectful. Which is this literary-nerd comedy show in a nutshell." (Note: Whitman makes his entrance around the 2:50 mark.)
— Recommended by Camila Domonoske, reporter, NPR.org

Have More Than An Hour? Try:

The Tim Ferriss Show: "Amanda Palmer On How To Fight, Meditate, And Make Good Art" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"In a wide-ranging and wildly inspiring conversation, Amanda Palmer expands on her ideas from the indispensable The Art of Asking as she contemplates creativity, sanity, integrity and what it means to be an artist."
— Recommended by Maria Popova, founder of Brain Pickings (find more of her favorite podcasts here)

As always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us. And if you have any feedback about what you'd like to see more of in this newsletter drop us a line at earbud@npr.org.

Happy listening,
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


Recommendations From Your Podcast Elves

Newsletter No. 7, Dec. 26, 2015

Good morning!

Been with family for days on end? Here are some podcasts for your much-needed me time.

Have Only 20 Minutes? Try:

Planet Money: "The Prisoner's Solution"
While incarcerated for shipping marijuana in the mail, entrepreneur Frederick Hutson applies his business acumen to the problems of prison. Listener Nikki Garcia says this "fascinating, well reported" story "brings out the best of Planet Money."

Have An Hour? Try:

RuPaul: What's The Tee?: "Becoming The Observer Of Your Mind" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"In the language of drag queens, 'What's the Tee?' is an invitation to share the Truth. In this episode, glamazon RuPaul and co-host Michelle Visage distill the spiritual wisdom of Eckhart Tolle and Judge Judy to shed light (and throw shade) on our inner saboteurs. Listen, and you may skip a few years of therapy."
— Recommended by Scott Stroud, user experience strategist, NPR

Have More Than An Hour? Try:

The Read: "Beyoncé Holiday Spectacular"
"In the days following Beyoncé's shocking album drop in 2013, four friends breathlessly try to process what just happened. The episode is hilarious, rousing and smart as it breaks down the album not just as album, but also as cultural coup." For adult listeners.
— Recommended by Jeffrey Cranor, co-creator/writer, Welcome to Night Vale podcast

As always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Nicole Cohen, Beth Novey & Rose Friedman
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

PS: We're taking a little break for the holiday, so you won't see a newsletter from us next week. Happy New Year — we'll see you in 2016!

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


What ARE Those Glowing Orbs?

Newsletter No. 6, Dec. 19, 2015

Hey!

We're back. Here are some podcasts to fill your weekend:

Have Only 5 Minutes? Try:

The Memory Palace: "The Glowing Orbs"
"I love forgotten/quirky history, and this has everything I want from an audio piece. It starts with a good story [a mysterious discovery made by John Glenn while he orbited Earth] that takes me somewhere unexpected; it has just the right amount of audio-production magic; and it makes me laugh, which is probably the hardest thing to do on the radio."
— Recommended by Michael Garofalo, executive producer, StoryCorps

Have 20 Minutes? Try:
The Leap: "The Dinner Date" (Newly added to earbud.fm!) "Every episode features incredible people making big, risky decisions in their lives — something I find really hard to do! This episode will leave you marveling at the incredible resilience of the human spirit — after you're done laughing/crying."
— Recommended by Becky Lettenberger, NPR Visuals

Have An Hour? Try:
Denzel Washington Is The Greatest Actor Of All Time Period: "A Soldier's Play"
"You get the behind-the-scenes of an amazing play, and David Alan Grier does hilarious impressions of Samuel L. Jackson, Adolph Caesar and of course Denzel."
— Recommended by Sonari Rhodes Glinton, NPR business correspondent
(And when you're done with this episode, earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall recommends two recent episodes: "The Wiz Live! with David Alan Grier" and "Creed with Ryan Coogler and Aaron Covington")

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


More Podcasts! Check 'Em Out

Newsletter No. 5, Dec. 12, 2015

Hi, podcast people!

Here are some podcasts to listen to as you go about your weekend:

Have Only 20 Minutes? Try:

How To Be A Girl: "Deep Stealth Mode" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"This is a personal journal navigating the joy and challenge of raising a young transgender daughter. Marlo Mack tells the story of her daughter's first day of camp through candid conversations. She tries to anticipate the challenges of meeting new friends with different identities and expectations. But the daughter is given choices every step along the way, choices she manages with heartwarming grace."
— Recommended by Charlie Harding, producer and co-host, Switched on Pop podcast

Have 40 Minutes? Try:

Stuff You Missed In History Class: "The Lady Juliana"
The Lady Juliana was a ship that transported female criminals — some convicted of relatively minor crimes — from Britain to Australia in the late 1700s. Listener Sierra Chandler says she was fascinated by the story of these women "who were transplanted from the U.K. to Australia at a time when neither society wanted them."

Have An Hour Or More? Try:

For Colored Nerds: "Boomerang Revisited"
Hosts Brittany and Eric discuss news, race and pop culture. This episode includes an extended discussion of the movie Boomerang. Listener Chelsea Marks says she enjoys this show because the hosts are "smart and funny all the time."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Beth Novey, Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Terryn Hall.


Fred Savage! Wrestling! Birth Control!

Newsletter No. 4, Dec. 5, 2015

Hi guys,


We're back with five podcasts to keep you company while you go about your weekend.

Have Only 15 Minutes? Try:

Song Exploder: "Ghostface Killah"
"Host Hrishikesh Hirway interviews musicians and somehow gets them to talk about how they make their songs in an interesting and satisfying way. In this episode, Hirway doesn't actually talk to Ghostface — instead he talks to the A&R guy whose job it was to get all the different rappers who collaborated on the album booked into a room together." — Recommended by PJ Vogt, host, Reply All podcast

Have 30 Minutes? Try:

The Business: "Fred Savage: From 'Wonder Years' To Director's Chair" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
"Each half-hour show starts with a conversation with a 'banter buddy' (often a Hollywood Reporter or TV Guide editor) about current Hollywood news, followed by an in-depth interview with creators/producers/actors. Very often the show highlights independent films and documentaries. I find it very compelling and not too 'insidery.'" — Recommended by Jeff Lunden, freelance reporter, NPR Arts, Books & Culture

Have An Hour Or More? Try:

Why Oh Why: "Hacking The Uterus"

"This is host Andrea Silenzi's meditation on whether or not to get an IUD, complete with a visit to the examination table. And there's a surprise ending." — Recommended by Sam Greenspan, producer, 99% Invisible podcast

The Fan Bros Show: "Ta-Nehisi Coates Versus The Fan Bros Show"
The Atlantic's Ta-Nehisi Coates joins three hosts to discuss superheroes, black voices in media and growing up in Baltimore. Podcaster Cicero Holmes says, "Ta-Nehisi brings his patented salient perspective and is completely unfiltered when he talks about race relations in the United States."

Art of Wrestling: "CM Punk"
Professional wrestler Colt Cabana talks to his wrestling friends about their career struggles and triumphs. Listener Liam Azogui says, "This episode was great because it took you on a journey through the mind of a top-level athlete, CM Punk, who left millions of dollars on the table in order to keep his sanity."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Max Linsky.


Sex! Garth Brooks! Man-Apes!

Newsletter No. 3, Nov. 21, 2015

Hi guys,

We're back with five podcasts to keep you company while you go about your weekend.

Have An Hour? Try:

Sex Nerd Sandra: "Girl Sex 101"
"It's so refreshing to hear adults talking about sex like adults! It's educational, direct and helpful." — recommended by Eliza Xavier, listener

Have 30 Minutes? Try:

Rumble Strip Vermont: "An American Life"
"By stripping the episode to its barest essentials — just one voice telling a compelling story — producers Erica Heilman and Larry Massett remind us of an enduring truth: A single life is unimaginably large; it contains multitudes, even opposites like heartbreak, humor and hope. Who knew the whole universe lived in small-town Vermont?" — recommended by Colin Dwyer, producer, NPR.org

Hello From the Magic Tavern: "Tom The Traveler"
Arnie Niekamp has been whisked away to the magical kingdom of Foon, where he now hosts a podcast. "Arnie is a veteran Chicago comedian and podcaster, and his interviews with wizards and shape-changing badgers are fantastic," says Improvised Star Trek actor and producer Sean Kelley.

Have Only 10 Minutes? Try:

Nature PastCast: "February 1925: The Man-Ape Of South Africa"
This series — which resurfaces some of the biggest articles from the 180-year history of the journal Nature — "brings old science to life," says NPR science correspondent Geoff Brumfiel. This episode is about paleontologist Raymond Dart and his groundbreaking fossil discovery.

Ten Minute Podcast: "Garth Brooks" (Newly added to earbud.fm!)
The name says it all: If you have 10 minutes and are looking for a laugh, Will Sasso's podcast — full of impressions, silliness and good-natured mockery — is a good place to start. Comedian and podcaster Melissa Villaseñor says it's "short and wacky."

And, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

Happy listening,
Nicole Cohen, Rose Friedman & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Max Linsky.


Podcasts That Bring Music To Your Ears

Newsletter No. 2, Nov. 14, 2015

We're back!

Each week, we're sending you one episode that we've just added to earbud.fm, and one or two (sort of) related episodes from the site's archives. This second installment breaks down the way music can make us feel.

Domingo Martinez, author of Boy Kings of Texas, sends this recommendation for a Crybabies episode with radio personality Phil Hendrie:

"Susan Orlean and Sarah Thyre host a show where they share music, moments, books, poems or movies that automatically trigger a knot in the throat. It's like participating in a clever conversation with friends. In the opening of Episode 12, Susan and Sarah delve into music theory and discuss why a tear-jerker like Adele's 'Someone Like You' is clinically proven to make your sympathetic nervous system respond. It has all the hallmarks of the show — their sassiness, their wit and exchange, anecdotes and information."

(Domingo also recommends the episodes featuring Guy Branum, Matthew Weiner, Moby and "Weird Al" Yankovic.)

Crybabies' music theory conversation reminded us of an episode of Pitch, recommended by Audible's Eric Nuzum. In "Somewhere In My Memory" co-host Alex Kapelman tries to get to the bottom of why the iPhone text notification "ding!" reminds him of the Beach Boys song "Sloop John B." Eric says:

"I love this podcast because I always learn from it, or hear music in a slightly different way afterwards. Always a pleasure; always surprising."

And while we're talking music mechanics, NPR's Linda Holmes recommends an episode of Switched on Pop that breaks down the new Carly Rae Jepsen's "I Really Like You." Linda says:

"This show is such a treasure. It's great at applying principles of music theory and structure to songs that usually escape that kind of attention, and in doing so, it reveals how much is going on even in things often treated as confections. Carly Rae Jepsen is, as the hosts admit, the show's patron saint."

Happy listening!
Beth Novey, Rose Friedman & Nicole Cohen
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Max Linsky.


Happy Saturday — Here Are Your Podcasts!

Newsletter No. 1: Nov. 7, 2015

Oh, hi! Remember earlier this week when we promised to send you two podcasts every weekend? Well, here they are! Each week, we'll send you one episode that has just been added to earbud.fm, and one (sort of) related episode from the site's archives. This first installment is a meditation on winning, losing and knowing when to quit.

Daniel Alarcón, executive producer of Radio Ambulante, sends this recommendation for "The Closest Person You're Gonna Get to a Miracle Worker" from The Season :

"I'm really enjoying this new podcast from WNYC called The Season, which is surprising, because it's about football, which I don't care much about. The producers tell the story of Columbia University's football team, which hadn't won a game in two full seasons, and their attempts to turn it around. The production, writing and storytelling are great. It's so good I might actually go watch a game one of these days."

Daniel's pick reminded us of "The Upside of Quitting," an episode from Freakonomics Radio, recommended by listener Jackie Lee, who says:

"In the U.S. we think you should always stick with things. This episode looks at when and why you might be better off giving up. It's a great listen if you are trying to make a decision in your life, and for me it helped me not feel guilty about quitting a few jobs that I hated."

We hope you've enjoyed using earbud.fm this week, and, as always, if you hear something you love, please share it with us.

See you next week!
Rose Friedman, Nicole Cohen & Beth Novey
NPR Arts, Books & Culture

This week's newsletter was curated with help from earbud.fm panelist Max Linsky.


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