If your podcast lineup is feeling a little stale, why not shake it up with these seven podcasts, all designed for music lovers. The formats range from traditional host interviews to storytelling and incorporates people from all walks of life. The common thread is something everyone loves: the power of music.
United States of Music
On November 14, Spotify released a new original podcast, “United States of Music,” hosted by comedian and former Saturday Night Live cast member Sasheer Zamata. The six-episode series delves into different cities in the United States, revealing untold stories about local music. The episodes feature artists like the Neon Trees, Malcolm Landon and LeNard Brown from The Controllers. Fans, venue owners and other local legends also tell their stories. podcast series consists of six episodes, and uses Spotify listening data to uncover stories about people who make music, people who love music and the stories that connect them, one city at a time. Cities like Chicago, Provo, Birmingham, Tucson, Los Angeles and those along the Mexican border are featured on this podcast.
Talkhouse Music Podcast
Talkhouse jettisons the traditional host format and just lets musicians talk with each other, making for some dynamic conversations between artists. For example, the showrunners of Mr. Robot and Twin Peaks talk art and life, Stephanie Beatriz (Brooklyn 99) and Javier Munoz (Hamilton) talk theater and Twitter, while Chuck D and Tom Morello talk protest music and politics. The conversation format is great for a podcast and the guests clearly enjoy unmoderated discussion.
If you crave a deep dive into your favorite songs, the Song Exploder is worth a listen. THe podcast picks one song per episode and then deconstructs it. Horst Hrishikesh Hirway is the host, and he is mostly there to let musicians explain themselves in their own way, discussing their inspirations and the stories behind how the songs came to be.
Switched On Pop
If you love popular music, or even if you love to hate it, then you’ll love hearing Nate Sloan and Charlie Harding talk about what’s popular now – and why. The podcast explains why certain songs are dominating the pop charts. They cover topics like the rise of pitch-shifted vocals, the many worlds of “Despacito,” and their own blind spots in assessing women in rock. Plenty of guests are invited to join in, making this a lively and informative consideration of pop as an art.
The rise of peak TV also brought with it some truly great television soundtracks. That’s the subject of Spotify’s original podcast, Showstopper, which analyzes the way TV shows use music. The show features interviews with many of the music supervisors from groundbreaking series like Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Master of None, Breaking Bad and The Americans.
Turned Out a Punk
Damian Abraham, the frontman of hardcore group F—-ed Up, hosts an exciting podcast about the impact of punk rock on people from all walks of life. Guests include Fred Armisen, Anthony Bourdain and Dave Pirner, along with a who’s-who of punk rock.
Vinyl Me, Please
Vinyl Me, Please was one of the first vinyl subscription clubs that helped make the record revival successful. It now has a podcast that features artists and fans discussing the hottest new albums. The podcast is not a nostalgia trip; instead it talks music past/present/future, music news, and spans nearly every genre.