I’ve written about Podcast Brunch Club quite a bit in my newsletter, and would like to shine a spotlight on it here on my site. I personally listen to podcasts all the time – and it’s almost always by myself. Sometimes I listen with my sons (who are 3 and 5), but never with other adults. But I am always wanting to talk to someone about what I hear! I swear, almost every episode I hear makes me think of someone I know who would be interested in it.
Podcast Brunch Club is like book club, but for podcasts. There are chapters all around the world where people get together once a month to discuss three or four episodes related to a theme. There are conversation starter questions to go with each month’s episodes, which is awesome – it makes it much easier for introverts like myself to talk to strangers. I’ve met really awesome people through Podcast Brunch Club. The group I am part of here in Houston, Texas inevitably talks about other podcasts we like (or can’t stand!) and some of our members even have podcasts themselves. It’s a fantastic outlet for anyone just getting into podcasts or people who are die hard listeners. It’s such an easy way to meet new people, especially people who are not in your regular social radius.
The international organization is run by Adela Mizrachi, who lives in Chicago (and of course is in a Podcast Brunch Club herself!). She crowdsources suggestions for upcoming themes and either selects the episodes herself or enlists a guest curator. Some of the themes from the last several months include jazz, laughter, death, prisons, higher education, and feminism. An awesome recent addition to the playlists is a music soundtrack compiled by DJ RuggedAngel from Pittsburgh, specific to each month’s theme.
I was privileged to be the guest curator in March 2017, and I chose the theme “Gangs.” I chose one episode I had heard before (Kelly McEvers’ fantastic Embedded episode, “The Capital”) and two that I researched to find the balance I was looking for. Knowing that PBC is an international organization, I wanted to consider the concept of gangs not just from an inside the U.S. viewpoint. I also wanted to find a story of someone getting out of a gang, and hear from a gang member (vs. just hearing the history of a gang). I loved putting the conversation starters together.
For the first episode (website, iTunes) of the very “meta” Podcast Brunch Club Podcast, I got to be Adela’s guest! We talked about the reason behind my selections, what my local PBC talked about when we met that month, and discussed some of the conversation starters that accompany all of the PBC listening lists. It was a lot of fun and I am excited to hear how other guests came up with their lists and what they were trying to spark in those in-person conversations.
Here’s how you can get involved with Podcast Brunch Club:
- Check out the themed listening lists and find one that sounds interesting to you. Listen to the episodes and think about the conversation starter questions.
- If you want to meet actual humans who also listen to podcasts, check this list to see if there’s already a PBC chapter near you.
- If you really like humans and want to start a chapter near where you live, do it! All you have to do is set up a meeting place, publicize it a bit (with Adela’s help), and see if anyone shows up! If they don’t, treat yo’ self to a delicious cafe au lait and try again the next month.
- Join the Facebook group to find out more about the listening lists and suggest a show when the call goes out for episode recommendations.
- Sign up for the Podcast Brunch Club newsletter – it comes out once a month with the listening lists.
- Follow Podcast Brunch Club on Twitter (@podcastbrunch).
If you already participate in Podcast Brunch Club and you’d like to support it even more, Adela has a Patreon page explaining where she’d like to take the organization in the future.
Congratulations to Podcast Brunch Club on launching this podcast! Can’t wait to hear what’s next!