The best podcasts you should listen to this week

Marc Maron and Lorne Michaels.

By Jaclyn Schiff and Simon Owens

Do you love listening to podcasts but are overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices out there? Have you subscribed to way more podcasts than you could ever listen to and don’t want to miss the best episodes? AudioTeller is a weekly newsletter that tells you the can’t-miss episodes you absolutely need to download. To have this newsletter delivered to your inbox, sign up here.

In this week’s issue you’ll learn what it’s like to audition for SNL, gain a better understanding of the root of the opiate epidemic, and hear why Nate Silver thinks he was vindicated. Stay tuned…

From Jaclyn Schiff, AudioTeller co-editor:

Airbnb’s head of hospitality on finding your life calling [link]

Podcast: The James Altucher Show — Episode: Chip Conley: How To Find Your Calling

The blogger James Altucher talks to Chip Conley, a hotelier who found his way to Airbnb after a near-death experience. Conley offers career insights from his journey and sheds light on Airbnb behind the scenes and what the business has planned for the future.

From Sriram Gopal, music writer for DCist:

The roots of the opiate epidemic [link]

Podcast: WTF with Marc Maron — Episode: Sam Quinones

The opiate addiction epidemic has been getting quite a bit of attention in the past year or so. Personally, it’s not a familiar subject, so this interview with journalist Sam Quinones served as an excellent primer on the issue. Quinones is the author of DREAMLAND: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic. Using the book as a template, Maron and Quinones trace the history of this problem from small towns in Mexico, to the medical field’s evolution on pain management, to societal breakdown in certain parts of America. The latter is especially relevant given the latest election results. This podcast is recommended for anyone interested in health policy, drug policy, and the regional differences in American culture. That description may sound a bit wonky, but assure you that Maran and Quinones are totally engaging in how they parse a complex problem.

From Simon Owens, AudioTeller co-editor:

What went wrong [link]

Podcast: Keepin’ it 1600 — Episode: The Day After

If you’ve been listening to the show Keepin’ it 1600, a podcast hosted by several former Obama White House staffers like Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, and Tommy Vietor, then you’re familiar with the term “bed wetters.” It was supposedly coined by David Plouffe in 2008 to describe campaign supporters and staff that constantly obsess and panic over every poll that might show a favored candidate losing support. The narrative on Keepin’ it 1600 over the last year has basically been that Hillary’s got this in the bag and that her bed-wetting supporters shouldn’t worry. And the episode that dropped on November 9th, as you can imagine, was an all-you-can-eat crow buffet. You can tell that the hosts, just like millions of their fellow Americans, are shell shocked, and they try mightily to pick up the pieces and make sense of this alternate universe we’ve found ourselves in.

Was Nate Silver vindicated? [link]

Podcast: FiveThirtyEight Politics — Episode: Model Talk Debriefs The 2016 Results: 11/11/16

Right after you listen to Keepin’ it 1600, you’ll want to immediately fire up this episode of FiveThirtyEight Politics. If you’ve been hanging out on Twitter, you’ve seen a war brewing between Nate Silver, other election prognosticators, and liberal pundits. FiveThirtyEight, though it ultimately predicted a Clinton win, still had Trump winning 30 percent of the time. This was giving him much higher chances than virtually every other predictions model, and FiveThirtyEight was also publishing several articles outlining scenarios where Trump could win. A simplistic reading of the situation would result in a claim that Silver was wrong, but, as he points out in this episode, his site gave Trump a 1/3 chance, and given that Trump lost the popular vote and only won by thin margins in Clinton’s firewall, Silver thinks he was vindicated. As someone who, prior to election night, thought FiveThirtyEight was way too bullish on Trump, I’m forced to agree with him.

What’s it’s like to audition for Lorne Michaels [link]

Podcast: WTF with Marc Maron — Episode: Lorne Stories: A WTF Special Presentation

There are many ways to get into comedy and even succeed in it without being a cast member on Saturday Night Live, but most aspiring comedians know that there are few platforms that can open as many doors as SNL. And if you’re going to get that coveted job, you’re going to first have to go through SNL creator Lorne Michaels. He’s a legendary figure in the world of comedy, and for the past few years, Marc Maron has asked every SNL cast member he’s had on his show to tell their “Lorne story.” In this special compilation episode, Maron has collected all the best Lorne stories told by his guests. It provides amazing insight into what it takes to make something as chaotic and long-running as SNL going week after week.

Thanks for reading (and hopefully listening to our recommendations). Think we missed a great episode? Email us at Want to have this list delivered to your inbox every week? Go here.

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