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Song Exploder Announces New Guest Host for 2019

Musician Thao Nguyen will be taking over the hit podcast

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.

Song Exploder Creator Hrishikesh Hirway

“Hosting and producing the show for the past five years has been exciting and educational. I’ve had the chance to speak with some of my favorite artists, learned so much about music, podcasts, and what goes into both of them. The show has evolved and grown over the years, and I’m thrilled that Song Exploder will be able to continue its evolution next year.”
— Hrishi

Thao was a guest on the podcast in 2016 and previously served as guest host for an episode.

On Dec. 13, Song Exploder will re-issue Thao’s 2016 episode, where she tells the story of her song “Astonished Man.” This past summer, Thao interviewed singer/songwriter Neko Case a few months before they went on tour together.

Thao is a San Francisco-based guitarist and singer-songwriter. Her 2016 album “A Man Alive” received critical praise from NPR, Pitchfork, USA Today and more. She has collaborated on projects with artists including Joanna Newsom, Mirah and Merrill Garbus, and toured the world extensively, including a stint with Radiolab.

“I am thrilled and honored to be taking over as the host of Song Exploder for 2019. Thank you Hrishikesh and the entire team for finding the music fan in all of us. I’m also so excited to join the Radiotopia constellation. Thank you Radiotopia for finding the podcast fan in all of us. Off to work on my radio voice.” — Thao

Song Exploder’s 150th episode dropped today, featuring Lindsey Buckingham breaking down Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way.”

The show will end the year with a special episode featuring Yo-Yo Ma on Dec. 20.

Song Exploder invites the audience to change the way they listen to music by hearing a deconstructed recording, uncovering hidden details in the sounds and the creative process.

The podcast has been streamed and downloaded over 50 million times. Previous podcast guests include Arcade Fire, Solange, Björk, U2, Janelle Monáe, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Lorde, Metallica, Carly Rae Jepsen, The Roots and more.

Hrishikesh Hirway and Thao Nguyen, by Song Exploder illustrator Carlos Lerma

If you love Song Exploder, consider donating to Radiotopia during our annual fundraiser to help support the show. Support Radiotopia, the network that helps you hear the world differently.

You can hear Song Exploder on Apple Podcasts, RadioPublic or wherever you listen.

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