I hated talk radio growing up. Driving in the car with my dad meant listening to WFAN 660 or Suzyn Waldman on WCBS 880. This, I did not like. Of course, growing up in the 80s meant there wasn’t an alternative for long car rides. I couldn’t simply put on my earbuds and stream Spotify. The idea of a Gameboy while a visual alternative would not fix the noise going into my ears.
As I’m sure all kids are wanton to do, when I finally had my own car, a transition took place. I found myself listening to WFAN and enjoying the sports talk radio. Parents, there always right…eventually.
Fast-forward years ahead and what I would say is that living in a city, be it Chicago, Pittsburgh, Minneapolis or Philadelphia – greatly reduced my talk radio consumption. I’ve never been an earbud wearing person and when you travel by train or bus, signal reception was challenging. Right at this time, podcasts started to have a moment, if you will. It just never caught on for me.
After moving to Minneapolis in 2017 and purchasing a Tesla I’ve become a total podcast junky. The key inflection point was the Tesla Model 3. While my Tesla can play music from an iPhone, it’s not elegant. It also doesn’t have an FM/AM tuner or XM Radio. That means – if what you’re listening to can’t be streamed, you aren’t going to be listening to it.
Tesla uses TuneIn and Slacker Radio as the foundation for their audio/music capabilities. Podcasts are elegantly integrated into the user experience. And with a 35-minute commute to and from work, every day, podcasts have become my go-to listening experience.
I know I’m late to the party. It’s like 1997 all again and my dad (all of you) was right…again. To be fair, there’s a lot of garbage out there in podcast-land, but there’s also an incredible amount of great content. A few of my personal favorites would be:
- The Rewatchables: A movie podcast from Bill Simmons and his team at the Ringer. They take rewatchable movies (doesn’t mean it’s a great movie), rewatch the movie and then break it down. You get some history, some pop culture and interesting trivia. Plus, you get to relive a movie that you’ve seen before.
- Stuff You Should Know: The hosts Josh and Chuck take on fascinating topics that cover history (Cleopatra) to topics of the day (Gig Economy) and so much in between. I laugh a bit and feel smarter after listening.
- Total Soccer Show: As a soccer nut, this podcast speaks to my brain and my soul. Tactics, game breakdowns, transfer talk and pre-match analysis are part of this pod.
So yeah , I should have embraced podcasts way earlier than 2019. Thankfully, with the internet, you can always catchup…quickly.