The month may be over, but you can listen to these podcasts anytime! I publish the best podcast episodes of the week every week on Friday – you can find those episodes and my reasoning behind why they’re great by going here to see an archive of those posts. But I also wanted to curate a list of the handful of episodes that simply rose to the very top over the whole month, the ones I’m still thinking about weeks later.
Here are the best podcast episodes (and a list of the podcasts that appeared on my Delicious Ingredients list more than once this month) that I listened to in May 2018 – the best of the best. This month I listened to 178 episodes.
If you’re interested in seeing what I listen to, I have a running log by month. I also have a newsletter that comes out every other week which is a bit more editorial than the site – you can find it here.
Best Episodes of May 2018
- In the Dark, S2 E6: Punishment (5/29/18): What it’s about: “Odell Hallmon, the state’s key witness in the Curtis Flowers case, is serving three consecutive life sentences. We wondered what he might say now that there are no deals to cut, and he will spend the rest of his days in prison. Would he stick to his story that Flowers had confessed to the Tardy Furniture murders? We wrote him letters and sent him a friend request on Facebook. Weeks went by and we heard nothing. And then, one day, he wrote back.”
- Help, I Sexted My Boss, S1E08: Help I Don’t Wash My Gym Kit (5/7/18) What it’s about: “William and Jordan share very different advice as they help you navigate the struggles of going to the gym.”
- We Came to Win, Episode 4: The Rise and Fall of Diego Maradona (5/2/18): What it’s about: “The retired Argentine midfielder Diego Armando Maradona is regarded by many soccer fans as the greatest player who ever lived. They’ll say he was creative, surprising, masterful—a gift to the game. But there are others who will tell you the opposite. That Maradona was the worst: A scoundrel, a villain, a cheat. In this episode, we tell the tale of soccer’s most complicated icon.“
- Showcase from Radiotopia, Errthang #8: Songs in the Key of Our Lives (5/13/18) What it’s about: “Al and Willie wrap up the season right where they started – with each other. After 30 years of friendship, their origin story is finally revealed.”
- ArtCurious Podcast, Episode 34: Rivals – Pollock vs. de Kooning (5/14/18): What it’s about: “The art world is a man’s world- or, at least, it used to be entirely one. This shouldn’t be surprising to anyone who is a longtime listener of the ArtCurious Podcast, because we’ve touched multiple times on the difficulties that have faced women who have sought careers as artists. Now, thankfully, in the age of #metoo, the male-heaviness of the art world is changing a bit, as it is in other facets of society. But turning back the clock to any other era in history, and the reality is that it was totally a man’s game. And the absolute manliness of it all was compounded intensely in one particular time and place: post-war America, where it was all about brusque machismo, the biggest innovations, and the biggest splash. It was a measuring contest like none other, and two larger-than-life characters were at the center of it all.”
- Here Be Monsters, HBM098: Feed the Queen (5/9/18): What it’s about: “There’s [a] new colony of leaf cutter ants at the Victoria Bug Zoo with the potential to reach over more than a million ants.”
- Sooo Many White Guys, Episode 34: Phoebe and Terry Gross Make it a Girls’ Night (5/1/18): What it’s about: “Radio legend Terry Gross (we’re not worthy!) is in the studio to tell Phoebe about her early days in radio, her marriage, and how the Trump administration is ruining her music listening.”
- Soul Music: True Colors (5/2/18): What it’s about: “”Your true colors…are beautiful, like a rainbow…” Billy Steinberg’s lyrics were originally inspired by his mother but his song writing partner Tom Kelly recognised it’s universal appeal and with a slight re-write, it became the song that Cyndi Lauper made famous the world over. Growing up in a small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Ken Kidd could never truly be himself. Watching Cyndi Lauper perform True Colors on MTV showed him that it was OK to be his authentic self. Years later he describes his pride at watching the Rainbow Flag being raised above the Stonewall National Monument as he and other LGBTQ campaigners sang that same song. Lesley Pyne learnt to sing ‘True Colors’ with her local choir. It’s a song that resonated with her more than she had ever expected. After six attempts at IVF, Lesley had had to come to terms with the knowledge that she wouldn’t be able to have children. It wasn’t easy. It has taken years of digging deep to work through the grief but now she helps others to find their true colours and firmly believes that they can be beautiful, like a rainbow. And in 1999, Caroline Paige, a jet and helicopter navigator in the Royal Air Force, became the first ever openly serving transgender officer in the British military. She rose above the extraordinary challenges placed before her to show her ‘True Colors’ whilst serving her country on the front line in the war on terror.“
- Lost Notes: A Million Dollars Worth of Plastic (5/17/18): What it’s about: “In 1989 McDonald’s ran the biggest flexi-disc promotion ever, sending out 80 million discs (playing the “Menu Song”) as inserts in newspapers all over the country. A very special copy of this record was almost burned to heat a family home in Galax, Virginia. Instead, it ended up winning the homeowner a million dollars.”
Best Podcasts of May 2018
(multiple appearances on weekly Delicious Ingredients including Honorable Mentions)
- In the Dark
- Sooo Many White Guys
- ArtCurious Podcast