It’s the most wonderful time of the year: celebrate with our favorite holiday episodes.

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Happy Holidays! We compiled our favorite Radiotopia holiday episodes to bring you some seasonal cheer. Get in the holiday spirit with stories about the Grinch, the stress of shopping for gifts, baking holiday treats and everything in between. Grab a toasty blanket, curl up by the fire and tune in.

Mortified, “The Naughty List”

You better watch out. You better not cry. Because this week we celebrate the holidays with tales of teenagers who would definitely end up on Santa’s Naughty List.

The Allusionist, “Dear Santa”

Jim Glaub and Dylan Parker didn’t think too much of it when, every year, a few letters were delivered to their New York apartment addressed to Santa. …

Here’s to 100 amazing episodes

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How to Be Amazing with Michael Ian Black released its 100th episode today! The in-depth interview show, hosted by comedian Michael Ian Black, started in 2015. It takes listeners into the minds of some of today’s most fascinating celebrities and newsmakers to discuss the process of how they became, well, amazing.

We spoke to Michael and his team about their favorite episodes, notable “Amazing 5” choices (on every episode the guest picks five things they think are amazing under the categories of ‘Food,’ ‘Music,’ ‘Book,’ ‘TV,’ and ‘Miscellaneous’), and how they pick guests for the show.

For the 100th episode, Michael turns the tables on “the greatest interviewer of our time,” putting her in the interviewee chair.

Terry Gross is the iconic host of the public radio show Fresh Air, where for over 40 years she has interviewed approximately 13,000 guests. In this engrossing interview, she and Michael cover a huge range of topics about her life and the show, allowing us to get to know a bit about a voice we’re used to hearing ask all the questions. …

Musician Thao Nguyen will be taking over the hit podcast

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Hrishikesh Hirway, creator, producer and host of Song Exploder, the acclaimed podcast where musicians take apart their songs and tell the story of how they were made, has announced that Thao Nguyen of the band Thao & The Get Down Stay Down will guest host the podcast in 2019.

Starting January 9, Thao will begin hosting the show.

Stepping down from his role as host, which he has held since the podcast debuted in 2014, Hrishi will assume an creative director role, and Associate Producer Christian Koons will move into the producer role.

Hrishi is stepping away to make room for new potential projects. He’ll still be part of the Song Exploder team as the creative director, but will be more behind the scenes. Hrishi says this will free him up to work on live events and other Song Exploder related projects he didn’t always have time for while putting out episodes. …

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For this edition of Inside the Podcast Studio, we go behind the scenes of Everything is Alive with creator Ian Chillag. Everything is Alive [EIA] provides listeners with insight into the objects all around us. A little bit funny, a little bit serious and introspective, the show brings humanity and humor to all sorts of ‘inanimate’ objects. We spoke with Ian about his audio background, how interview subjects are chosen and his thought process behind the show.

On the Podcast

Radiotopia positioned Everything is Alive as a show “unlike anything” people had heard before, and the show really is unique! How did you come up with the idea?

It’s a way I’ve always joked around — pretending to be the voice of the things in the room, talking about what an awful job a chair has, being sat on all day. But also, being a producer, you’re always looking for guests that hosts can interview. So, if you’re working on a segment about bananas, you try and find the world’s foremost banana expert. But primary sources are so much better. …

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It’s midterm season. Whether you’re on your way to the polls, or waiting in line to vote, we’ve compiled an Election Day podcast playlist to commemorate the day. Hear episodes on democracy and power in the United States and beyond, episodes to teach you about facts and history behind elections, plus fictional stories with an Americana touch.

The Memory Palace, “Election Eve Rebroadcast (In Line)”

A rebroadcast from the night before the 2016 election. There are a gajillion things that you can and should read about this period. Some of the details for this story were found in this remarkable article by Claude Sitton.

West Wing Weekly, “Election Night (with Clark Gregg)”

As the characters anxiously await election results and Donna tries to swap votes with Christian Slater, Josh and Hrishi interview Clark Gregg about how everybody wants to call him Agent Something. And, Josh looks back fondly on the mighty superpowers that allowed him to summon rain from a clear sky. …

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Pumpkins are popping up everywhere, you’ve gotten caught in at least one fake spiderweb and you have a sudden desire to watch “Hocus Pocus” — it’s almost Halloween! Get into the spirit and spook up your HalloWeek with Radiotopia’s creepiest episodes. We recommend listening with the lights on.

Everything is Alive, “Annie, Jack O’Lantern”

Annie is a jack o’ lantern, but she doesn’t want to scare you.

The Memory Palace, “The Dress in the Closet”

This here is a Halloween episode. They get creepy.

Song Exploder, “John Carpenter — Halloween (Theme)”

In 2018, a new Halloween film was released, and for the first time since the first film, John Carpenter composed the score. That included remaking his theme song for the new film, this time with the help of his son Cody Carpenter and his godson Daniel Davies. …

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Avery Trufelman is a curious and creative storyteller, a longtime producer of 99% Invisible [99PI], and the host of 99PI’s new special series Articles of Interest, six thought-provoking episodes looking into what we wear and why. Avery did a fascinating deep dive into the stories and nuances of clothing and fashion. So naturally, we wanted to share more about Avery: details on the series, what she listens to, and how she views her own personal sense of style.

What’s your go-to podcast and why?

The podcasts that make me squeal when I see them in my feed are Imaginary Advice, Ear Hustle, Reply All, the Paris Review Podcast, and Still Processing. …

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Criminal launched its podcast back in 2014, and since then has told crime stories of all types, looking into complex cases to tell concise, compassionate narratives. In 2016, when Criminal reached episode 50, we shared creators Phoebe Judge and Lauren Spohrer’s favorite episodes.

Today, they celebrate episode 100, a huge milestone in the relatively new podcasting space. We spoke to the team about their creative process, the numbers and stats that go into each episode of Criminal, and their favorite recent episodes. To read about Phoebe’s all-time favorites, scroll down to the bottom.

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From left to right: Producer Nadia Wilson, Co-Creator and Host Phoebe Judge, Co-Creator Lauren Spohrer

Lauren Spohrer’s favorite episodes, 50-100

Episode 85: The Manual

In 1993, a family was found murdered in their home. A Maryland police spokesperson described the homicide investigation as the most “exhaustive and labor intensive” in the department’s history. And then homicide investigators found a strange manual, and the case became national news. …

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“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” isn’t a stereotypical musical romantic comedy; with a giddy but gorgeous leading lady, her stoic lover, and their story told through perfectly pitched tunes. But the show’s protagonist really wants it to be.

Main character Rebecca (Rachel Bloom) lives in a delusion. …

There’s a saying that I tell myself when I’m feeling stuck:

“There are people you haven’t met yet who will love you.”

Earlier this week, my friend Olivia and I spent three hours chatting in a coffeehouse two towns over from my own. When we left to go home, the conversation didn’t feel over, it was just time to go. Olivia and I know each other from Boston University, but we’re from the same county in New York. …


Mariel Cariker

PRX Marketing Intern — Boston-based audio lady

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