As someone who doesn’t watch TV often, I’m an avid listener of podcasts. I enjoy podcasts because they’re easily accessible, I can listen to them when I’m working, travelling or when I can’t fall asleep at night. Whenever I need to get away from my mundane life, podcasts help me take my mind off my worries.
If you don’t already listen to podcasts (seriously, what are you doing?), they are a wonderful online platform for sharing information and initiating conversations. My interests cover a fairly wide range of topics from sports, to politics and literature. Soundcloud.com houses most of my favourite audio shows, you can follow my account here.
Here are my 10 most listened to podcasts:
- Melanin Millennials
Melanin Millennials is hosted by two young black Londoners Imrie and Satia. This weekly podcast unpacks world and British politics, society and current affairs with wit and veracity. Imrie and Satia celebrate the outstanding black achievers in the Melanin Magic segment, fearlessly confront deplorables in the Daily Mail online comment section, and hand out a Petty Side-Eye of The Week. Melanin Millennials has amazing guests like the author of ‘Why I’m No Longer Speaking To White People About Race’ – Reni Eddo-Lodge, and social media influencer Chidera Eggerue @theslumflower. This podcast shines light on the Black British experience from two thoughtful and powerful women.
- The Read
New Yorkers Crissle and Kid Fury appraise American popular culture and society with admirable honesty and a killer sense of humour. The Read has been my favourite podcast for the past few years, because it strips away facades by calling out how ridiculous (often depraved) human beings can be. Be it the absurd celebrities, or show listeners who send in drama-filled letters for advice. The Read segment where social offenders are roasted with passion, will keep your ears peeled week after week.
- Not Your African Cliché
Ifeyinwa, Amayo, Onyeka and Ifeoluwa present Not Your African Cliché, which tackles the stereotypes that dominate how Nigerians and Africans are perceived. In the powerful TEDTalk ‘The Danger of A Single Story’ author Chimamanda Adichie warned how homogenising experiences and identities strips people, in particular Africans of their dignity. This is why podcasts like Not Your African Cliché are important; authentic representation matters in shaping accurate narratives. I enjoy discovering how similar and distinct my experiences and views on African religions, mental health and living in the diaspora are from these women from Nigeria.
- Mostly Lit
I recently came across this show whilst listening to Melanin Millennials. Three young Londoners Alex, Rai and Derek host a podcast ideal for book lovers. If like myself, you enjoy literature, poetry and reading in general this is an absolute gem. It’s refreshing to hear literature from the perspective of young people, who engage critically with various texts from Chinua Achebe, Shakespeare, to comic books. Mostly Lit examines how our approach to reading reflects our perception(s) of society. Since I began listening to the podcast I’ve rapidly gone through their archive, adding more books to my already burgeoning book list.
- Denzel Washington Is The Greatest Actor Of All Time Period
DWITGAOATP is a cinephile’s and Denzel Washington fan’s dream. Comedians W. Kamau Bell and Kevin Avery, dedicated themselves to reviewing the legendary actor’s filmography from the beginning of his career to his most recent film Fences. DWITGAOTP interviewees include persons who have worked with Denzel Washington like the iconic director Spike Lee, along with others like Issa Rae of Insecure HBO and Jesse Williams of Grey’s Anatomy. Although the podcast has officially come to an end, it’s still worth listening to as it promotes black film cannon and diversity in the film industry.
- The Spread
Karen Kaz and Nini present the Kenyan podcast challenging societal attitudes to sex. For many Africans there is a forked tongue relating to sex, everyone is having it but it’s taboo to speak about sex openly and freely. The Spread is a sex-positive show that demystifies sex by having conversations, this is especially important for women who often struggle reconcile being sexual liberation whilst living in a judgemental society. Karen and Nini discuss everything from threesomes, oral sex to sexual health, all the while reminding their listeners that ownership of one’s sexuality is empowerment!
- Is The Mic Still On?
Dead End Hip Hop has been one of my favourite Youtube channels for the past few years, as the name suggests it’s a show dedicated to all things Hip-Hop related. Their new podcast features cast members Sophie, Ken, Feefo, Myke, Rod and Beezy, who opine on the week’s biggest stories hip-hop culture. The hosts have hearty and passionate discussions about rap beefs, films, sport and everything in-between. You’ll enjoy Is The Mic Still On as it feels like you’re listening to a conversations with your friends.
- Skip And Shannon: Undisputed
My daily dosage of sport commentary, which focuses mainly on American sports like basketball and NFL, is brought to you by the amazing duo Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe with Joy Taylor. The hosts have amazing chemistry and are light-hearted even when they disagree. Undisputed is a great show because it covers societal challenges reflected in professional sports such as racism, domestic violence and civil rights.
- Politics & Beyond
Zimbabwean politics is often agonising to follow but with a general election in 2018, one has to stay informed. It’s more important than ever for young people to take interest in the future of our country. Christopher Charamba and Henry Biti cover politics and beyond, because as the saying goes ‘Everything is political’. This podcast is one of the few Zimbabwean platforms where politicians, activists, commentators et all are earnestly questioned without sycophantry. If you’re a Zimbabwean or interested in what is going on in the country, this is an intelligent podcast you’re sure to appreciate.
The compelling BBC interview programme is now available in downloadable podcast format. Hardtalk hardly needs any introduction, but if you didn’t know this show puts prominent global figures under scrutiny, without fanfare or favour. It’s must listen for anyone who follows current affairs, and you can finally listen in audio format.
I’d love to hear what your favourite podcasts are and any recommendations.