This chart-topping podcast is bound to get you thinking. Host James O’Brien sits down with some of the biggest names in politics, entertainment, sport and popular culture, many of whom rarely give interviews. From Tony Blair to Sir Lenny Henry, O’Brien’s guests really span the spectrum. Our favourite episode? The one with top British solicitor Nazir Afzal makes for powerful listening.
Fans of the macabre should check out RedHanded, the podcast that covers everything from big-time serial killers to hauntings, disturbing mysteries and bizarre whodunits. Crime junkies and real-life friends Hannah and Suruthi pick a different topic each week, leading their audience down some truly terrifying roads – but always with a dusting of humour. Listen to this one with the lights on.
Fashion No Filter
From a heart-to-heart with model Arizona Muse to picking up with Khaite designer Cate Holstein over the sudden explosion of her brand (after that Katie Holmes ‘bradigan’) we can’t get enough of this girl-talk series from French-girl influencers Camille Charriere and Monica Ainley. Look out for the episode with celebrity stylist Kate Young, whose clients include Sienna Miller and Selena Gomez.
Need a Queer Eye fix between Netflix seasons? Fab Five member Jonathan Van Ness, aka JVN, has his own podcast. Getting Curious brings together people at the top of their field. From America’s most decorated Olympic gymnast to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, it seems there’s no one JVN can’t talk to. Expect hard truths amid the soul searching, all wrapped up in JVN’s signature hilarious and chatty style. We loved the episode with legal activist Erin Brockovich.
Aimed at new mothers, but relevant to anyone struggling with mental health issues, Motherkind was started by host Zoe as a self-empowerment platform for modern mums. Whether it’s tackling common afflictions like anxiety or perfectionism, or simply trying to answer questions about your own upbringing, Motherkind brings together psychology experts, authors and business leaders to track down the answers.
No Such Thing As A Fish
Produced and presented by the researchers behind BBC Two panel game QI, this weekly series sees the QI ‘elves’ present a favourite fact they’ve uncovered in the course of their research. What ensues is a lively discussion of said fact, while other presenters throw in extra tidbits and related info. The result of too many facts in the QI office ‘going to waste’, this podcast will teach you a thing or two.
Out To Lunch With Jay Rayner
Listen in as one of the world’s top food critics takes a guest out to lunch at a restaurant of his choosing. From MP Jess Phillips to actor Stanley Tucci, Rayner’s broken bread with some big, interesting names. There’s no topic off limits – seek out the episode in which actor Richard E Grant explains why he didn’t speak to his mother for 25 years, or the one where artist Grayson Perry broaches complex issues of male shame and humiliation.
New York Times Popcast
The US newspaper’s pop music team dissect new songs and album launches, as well as their favourite artists. From Kanye West to the Grammy nominations, presenter Jon Caramanica and his guests explain why pop matters, what it’s all about and where it stands amid broader popular culture. Great if you fancy expanding your musical horizons.
The Missing Cryptoqueen
Ruja Ignatova called herself the ‘Cryptoqueen’, telling people she had invented a credible cryptocurrency to rival Bitcoin and persuading investors to pour billions into the project. Two years ago, she disappeared. Jamie Bartlett spent months investigating how she did it and trying to figure out where she is now. A gripping and utterly astonishing story – fans of The Dropout should add this to their list.
Things You Can’t Ask Yer Mum
From two of SL’s favourite influencers, this series tackles all the topics you probably don’t feel comfortable discussing with a parent. Listen to BFFs Lizzy Hadfield and Lindsey Holland chat through their experiences of break-ups, grief, friendship, sex – and answer listeners’ questions. If you’re craving a good chat with your girlfriends, this will fill the void.
Described as the podcast for literary nosy parkers, this one sees host Daisy Buchanan grill her guests on their darkest bookshelf secrets. From books they’ve borrowed and never returned, to novels they’ve pretended to read just to impress intellectual friends, Buchanan leaves no bookish stone unturned. Past guests include comedian Richard Ayoade and fellow podcast host and writer Dolly Alderton.
Taking inspiration from journalist John Carreyrou’s book Bad Blood, this docu-series about the rise and fall of Silicon Valley healthcare start-up Theranos – and the woman behind it – will knock your socks off. With plenty of gasp-out-loud moments, it’s staggering to think how many investors failed to see through Elizabeth Holmes – the world’s youngest female billionaire – and her lie that Theranos’s blood-testing kit was capable of revolutionising the entire healthcare industry.
TBD With Tina Brown
Legendary editor Tina Brown sits down with actors, politicians, journalists, and the newsmakers of tomorrow’s social debates in this recently-launched podcast. From actress Rosamund Pike to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, top celebrity divorce lawyer Laura Wasser to award winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, the show proves why Brown remained at the top of her industry for so long and what makes her one of the best interviewers around.
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