10 Podcasts You Should Absolutely Be Keeping Up With

Ever since my mom blessed me with a pair of LG Bluetooth headphones for Christmas this past year, I’ve gotten super into podcasts. It’s kind of like listening to an audiobook, only different somehow—maybe because they’re shorter, or about varied topics or ideas. Regardless, listening to podcasts can help pass the time and entertain you while you’re on your daily commute, cleaning your house, taking a long trip back to your parents’ house, or just lounging around coloring in an adult coloring book.

I’ve been asked by at least three people over the past week, “What are some podcasts I should be listening to?” I keep up with many, so I’ve compiled those into an easily consumable list to help new podcast listeners get started or to give longtime listeners some new material.

1. Lore


“Lore” is a podcast about the history behind common folklore, and host Aaron Mahnke digs deep into history to pull out some of the best and creepiest stories, all of which are very, very true.

Average episode length: 25-30 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 29

2. Limetown


“Limetown” is a fictional podcast that follows reporter Lisa Haddock’s investigation of the disappearance of the small city of Limetown, where more than 300 men, women and children disappeared a decade before under mysterious circumstances. Recommendation: Do not listen to this while you’re driving through rural countryside at night. Light is preferred. Lots of bright light.

Average episode length: 25-30 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 6 (I know. I know.)

3. The Message


“The Message” is a fictional podcast following the weekly interviews and reports of Nicky Tomlin—a sort of modern retelling of “The War of the Worlds.” Aliens. Creepy diseases. Drama.

Average episode length: ~20 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 8

4. Welcome to Night Vale


We here at LD have loved “Night Vale” for a long time, and we’re still going strong. A fictional radio broadcast from the desert town of Night Vale, the podcast is quirky, creepy, absurd and hilarious, all at the same time. It’s been going strong for more than three years now and is still just as enjoyable as the first episode.

Average episode length: ~25 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 84

5. Alice Isn’t Dead


This podcast is brand-new, released just last week by the creators of “Welcome to Night Vale.” So far it promises a bit more creepiness than “Night Vale,” but there’s only been one episode so far, so it’s hard to tell exactly how it will play out. However, if you’re a fan of “Night Vale,” it would stand to reason you’d like “Alice,” too.

Average episode length: ~20 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 1

6. Stuff You Should Know


This podcast is great for wanting to kill time and learn while doing it. Pick a topic—pretty much any topic—and hosts Chuck and Josh have probably done a podcast on it. There’s one about the Great Wall of China, one about how viruses work, one about Lizzie Borden… the list goes on. There are hundreds of them, so it’ll take a while to exhaust them. Plenty of material to make you smarter!

Average episode length: ~45 minutes

Episodes released at press time: A LOT

7. Myths & Legends


Somewhat like “Lore,” “Myths & Legends” is a storytelling podcast, but mostly focuses on popular stories with surprising origins. They tell the stories as close to the original as possible while modernizing it for listeners—kind of like “No Fear Shakespeare” for myths, in podcast form.

Average episode length: ~30 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 44

8. Serial


Yes, everyone’s heard of “Serial,” and no, the second season isn’t as good as the first. But it’s still a worthwhile podcast to listen to—at least to keep up with all the hype. Plus, it’s fun to gather information and then try to make a reasonable judgment call using the facts you’re given.

Average episode length: ~40 minutes

Episodes released at press time: 19

9. The New Yorker: Fiction


This podcast is super simple: Great authors reading other great authors’ work from the New Yorker magazine archives. Sometimes the stories are decades old, other times only a few months or years.

Average episode length: varies from ~30 minutes to 1 hour

Episodes releasead at press time: Many (too many to count)

10. Mystery Show


This podcast is a bit hard to get into at first, but it can be pretty addicting. Starlee Kine (cool name, right?) solves mysteries, either submitted by listeners or her own friends, that can’t be solved by searching in Google. Think that sounds unlikely? Give it a listen and you’ll be proven wrong.

Average episode length: varies from ~35 minutes to 1 hour

Episodes released at press time: 6 (Season 2 is in the works)

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