Ten podcasts to improve your dinner party conversation

middle aged sitting in a chair listening to a podcast on headphones

Tune into the best podcasts the USA has to offer
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Do you need something new and interesting to keep you entertained during your commute? Or some quality listening to liven up your dinner parties and game night get-togethers? Here’s our guide to ten of America’s best podcasts – fun, quirky and intelligent musings for gents with their finger on the pulse.

99% Invisible

99% Invisible Podcast LogoDo you find it impossible to throw books away? Following the 1989 earthquake, San Francisco’s Public library finished up with half a million books on the floor, and the stacks were no longer safe. Books needed rehoming, but there simply wasn’t enough space. How do you ‘weed’ a library? Enter the acronym MUSTY: Misleading; Ugly; Superseded; Trivial; Your-collection-has-no-use-for-this-book – and this is the criteria to help you decide which books end up in the trash!

99% Invisible is about all the thought that goes into the things we don’t think about — the unnoticed architecture and design that shape our world.” Incidentally, the public also help to “weed” libraries – books about the occult and the Bible are among those most frequently stolen…

 

 

Dollop Podcast

The Dollop Podcast LogoDid you know car genius John Delorean began life as a jazz musician? In 1943. He was drafted, and later sold insurance before beginning a postgrad at the Chrysler Institute of Engineering – essentially a paid internship. An MBA from night school followed and by 1953, John was earning the equivalent of $130,000 – and living at home with his mom. Not bad for a jazz saxophonist.

The Dollop is a bi-weekly American History Podcast. Every week, Dave Anthony reads a story to his friend, Gareth Reynolds, who has no idea what the topic is going to be about. An entertaining and laconic take on history, you’ll love this podcast.

 

 

 

Good Beer Hunting

Good Bear Hunting Podcast LogoAre you a ‘promiscuous drinker’? Asks Good Beer Hunting’s Michael Kiser. In conversations with a smorgasbord of colleagues and beer aficionados, he discusses the likes and loves of those ‘tempted by the beverage of another’ – if you like drinking around, this podcast is for you.

With 500 subscribers from all over the world, Good Beer Hunting is a beer lovers’ community as much as a podcast dedicated to beer. Essential listening for beer nerds, Good Beer Hunting is niche and wonderfully geeky; check out the five part series on Guinness which begins with first hand experience at St James’ Gate Dublin and the Open Gate Brewery in Baltimore – gaining full access gives insight into some fascinating aspects of the Guinness operation.

 

 

How I Built This

npr's How I Built This LogoThe boutique fitness class is wonderful for those with the organizational skills necessary to book themselves onto classes ahead of time. E-commerce executive, John Foley, was not one of those people. In 2011, it also began to dawn on him that his spinning class wasn’t scalable beyond the 20 or 30 bikes available. Foley spotted an opportunity. Today, his brainchild, Peloton has sold close to half a million high-tech exercise bikes, and is valued at $4billion.

Join NPR podcaster Guy Raz as he interviews founders of some of the world’s best known companies and finds out what inspires and motivates the globe’s most able innovators and entrepreneurs. From Whitney Wolfe who launched the dating app, Bumble, to the inventors of the Springfree Trampoline, Keith Alexander and Steve Holmes, How I Built This is a must for budding entrepreneurs.

 

Jocko Podcast

Jocko Podcast logoRetired Navy SEAL officer Jocko reveals just how hard it is for SEALS to score a perfect 5.0 in leadership. You have to be an “inspiring motivator and trainer, [whose] subordinates reach highest level of growth and development, [a] superb organiser, [demonstrate] great foresight, etc. etc.” – in other words, “you have to be 100% squared away.” Want to be the best you can be? Set yourself high standards and strive to achieve them.

Dedicated to helping others to become the best leader they can be, Jocko’s podcast is full of interesting discussions relating to everything from self-discipline to management consulting. Highly respected in the self-help community, this is podcasting gold.

 

 

Joe Rogan Experience

The Joe Rogan Experience podcast

How old is too old to be an extreme sports practitioner?” Tune into the Joe Rogan Experience as he asks legendary big wave surfer and tow-in surfing pioneer, Laird Hamilton that very question. At 55 and still at the top of his game, Hamilton says he aims to go full speed until he drops, and as it turns out, he’s young compared to some of his own heroes…

Joe Rogan in conversation with luminaries like Elon Musk, Eddie Izzard and Jack Dorsey – what’s not to like? If intelligent discussion is your thing, grab yourself a seat and prepare for a couple of hours of quality “me time”.

 

 

 

The Art of Manliness

The Art of Manliness Podcast LogoModern life makes you an animal trapped in surroundings that preclude you from running, swimming, leaping and jumping as you’re designed to do. But what if there was a training method designed to help us harness the potential for natural movement and by doing so, give us better health and wellbeing? Welcome to the Art of Manliness podcast and a brilliant interview with Erwan Le Corre, founder of the MovNat physical fitness system.

Covering subjects as diverse as dinner party conversation, 1,000 books to read before you die, and ‘How to survive a secret Syrian terrorist prison’, The Art of Manliness deserves its status as one of America’s most popular podcasts.

 

 

 

The Habitat on Gimlet Media

The Habitat on Gimlet Media logoFancy spending 365 days in outer space? To find out what it would be like for men and women to live on the red planet, scientists recruited volunteers to live in a pod on an isolated Hawaiian island – the closest environment to Mars that you’ll find on earth. There’s no Facebook or Twitter, and no way to call home – but they do have audio recorders, and this is their story.

Gimlet Media is home to an array of awesome podcasting on subjects as diverse as crime culture in American cities, to insights into business startups, but this series from 2018 is a standout; there’s no murder, but there’s plenty of “drama, romance, exploration and funny stuff and sad stuff, and gross stuff, all in one little dome.

 

 

Against the Rules with Michael Lewis

Against the Rules by Michael Lewis podcast logoThe two most dangerous words in the english language? “Consumer finance.” It’s a minefield of complicated fees and penalties. Why? Because there is no referee – there’s nobody holding the myriad credit issuers and the shady companies that create and share your credit score to account. That’s why they get away with lying and cheating you out of your hard-earned money.

Journalist and bestselling author Michael Lewis (Liar’s Poker, Moneyball) takes a searing look at what’s happened to fairness—in financial markets, newsrooms, basketball games, courts of law, and much more.” Produced by Pushkin Industries, a podcast company from Malcolm Gladwell and Jacob Weisberg, it’s time to buckle up for an eye-opening ride.

 

Blamo!

Working for David Copperfield was the magical beginning to fashion retailing superhero, Sam Lobban’s career. It was actually with the eponymous London men’s outfitters rather than with the famous magician that Lobban began working aged just 15, but his life in fashion has been just as charmed as that of the man with the wand. Now he’s “helping evolve Nordstrom”.

Blamo gives you the lowdown on the changing face of the fashion industry with founder Jeremy Kirkland in conversation with actors and athletes through to editors and journalists. When you’re done listening to Sam Lobban, check out Kirkland’s interviews with designer Billy Reid; founder of Gear Patrol, Eric Yang; and bespoke tailor, Kathryn Sargent.

 

 

Do you have a favorite podcast we’ve missed? Leave us a comment below; we’d love to hear about it.

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