Podcasts I Love

Over the last two years I have really fallen in love with listening to podcasts. Having always been an avid radio listener, particularly during my work commute, I found myself becoming increasingly bored with the content and the music. I was first shown the light with The Bugle Podcast which was John Oliver’s original platform before he exploded with Last Week Tonight. Once I got into the habit of listening to The Bugle en-route to work I then started discovering a whole new world of entertainment and information.

I am now tweeted, SMS’d or emailed at least once a week for a podcast recommendation so here it is, the list of my favourite podcasts…

  1. The Tim Ferriss Show

The second podcast I subscribed to after The Bugle, The Tim Ferriss Show is a longer form podcast (90 – 120 minutes per episode) where Tim chats to some of the most interesting and successful people around. My favourite episodes include Seth Godin, Rainn Wilson, Alain de Botton, and Scott Adams, but it’s really hard to pick because there are so many others that I have loved and learned from.

The length of the podcast can sometimes be a bit much but are great for long car trips and you really do glean so much from one episode. Guests are also rather heavily in the white male demographic but doesn’t necessarily impact on the quality of the content, all the guests do bring so many different insights and experiences.

2. No Such Thing as a Fish

This is possibly the most random podcast I currently subscribe to but I am a total sucker for useless information and No Such Thing as a Fish is the best feeder for that need. Created and hosted by the “QI Elves”, the people behind all the great content on the BBC show, QI.

Each episode is only about 30 minutes long, and is just filled with intelligent, dry British humour and fun useless information. You can really just pick it up from anywhere in the series but their live recorded shows are particularly good.

3. #GirlBoss Radio

As the title suggests, #GirlBossRadio is one for the girls and those on the higher end of the feminist spectrum. It’s not an “in your face feminist” platform but it certainly gives a boost to your girl power after listening to some inspirational and successful women. Sophia Amoruso, the founder of Nasty Gal and author of the New York Times bestselling book, Girl Boss, is seriously funny and candid about life at the top of your game.

Episodes on average are 50 minutes long and delve into some seriously interesting female characters. Some of my favourite episodes are with Charlize Theron, Rachel Weiss and Jenn Hyman. If you’re a girl person who needs a bit of inspiration and motivation in your professional life, I seriously recommend a listen en-route to work and read the GirlBoss book!

4. Death, Sex & Money

Every time I listen to Death, Sex & Money I hear someone’s story that blows my mind. Each episode of the podcast touches on a hard-to-talk-about topic through listeners telling their stories. It is generally just about the shared human experience of life and just how grateful you should feel about your experiences. The host, Anna Sale, is so good at making her contributors open up and in telling their stories, you get sucked into each episode and time flies.

No episode is really longer than 30 minutes, and some of my favourites include; The Sex Worker Next Door, Why You’re Not Having Sex, Autism Isn’t What I Signed Up For, and Dead People Don’t Have Any Secrets. I can also recommend listening to a playlist they created called Anthems of Change, great music to listen to when you’re going through big life changes, all recommended by listeners (but only if you have spotify).

5. The Brave Ideas Podcast 

Now, this suggestion comes with a little bias, as it is the official podcast of the agency I work at, Aqua. But, I did listen to the podcast for a while before I even applied to work at Aqua and still thoroughly enjoyed the content. Brave Ideas covers the marketing and digital industries in South Africa and abroad, and if you too are in those industries, you’ll love the conversations. Hosted by my colleague in Strategy, Dan Herman and the lovely Esther McGeer, they interview people from within our agency group to bring great ideas and talent to the fore.

You can even watch/listen to me contribute to our live podcast last year where I speak about Millennials in the work place, although I am probably moving away from those beliefs now, I think it’s still interesting. I can also highly recommend the episode with Richard Dunn, the Head of Strategy at Wunderman EMEA.

 

I subscribe to about another 6 or so podcasts but the ones I’ve included here are my true favourites and most interesting. I listen to my podcasts through the Podcast app on my iPhone, which means all of the podcasts are available online or on iTunes.

Happy listening! If you are listening to something you love, please share.

Image Source: Unsplash, Christian Baron

 

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The Winter Sculpture Fair

I am plagued at the beginning of each May with the thought of Mother’s Day. Each year there seems to be a rise in standard for another original present idea or group activity to show my mother just how much my sister and I care. And, at the risk of discrediting my dear mother, we have in the past been told off for less-than-expected Mother’s Day participation and spoiling. So you can imagine my joy when I came across The Winter Sculpture Fair that happened to fall on this year’s day of maternal appreciation.

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I had no idea what to expect when I bought the tickets and was really blown away by the whole experience, and most importantly, so was my mother. The Fair was at Nirox Sculpture Park which is a privately owned piece of land about 30 minutes drive outside of Johannesburg. The owners of the land have provided one of the most beautiful settings for artists to install their pieces. It is to my understanding that they provide free board and lodging for sculptors on the condition that they leave whatever they create in the park.

The event was bustling to say the least, as any event with the whiff of Cape Town usually has in Johannesburg. Restaurants and wine farms from Franschoek were set up in two massive marquees and we really were treated to some amazing cuisine. Once we fought through crowds for food and wine, we then set up a blanket amongst the trees and sculptures and soaked in the winter sun. One really couldn’t have asked for a better way to spend a Sunday. We also took a nice stroll through the huge park, taking in the pieces and scenery.

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I was suitably impressed with the park and I am looking forward to some good drives out of Johannesburg for an afternoon spent under a tree with a book. The park is open to the public on weekends from 10:00 – 15:00, follow the jump to their website if you’d like some more info: Nirox Sculpture Park

The Orbit : Braamfontein

The Orbit is a gorgeous new spot in the heart of the revived “New Johannesburg”, a restaurant and live jazz club that manages to bring a big city feel to the Braamfontein area.

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I was lucky enough to watch Emily Bruce, a Cape Town-based jazz singer, who really is your quintessential female powerhouse vocalist. Her backing band with the combination of her voice was entrancing to say the least. The audience was surprising mixed, I was expecting a room filled with beards, tweed and tight pants but instead there was an older businessman crowd mixed-in with the young Braamfontein crowd.

The food was good with a limited menu but the highlight for me was sitting back in the shadows with a good Scotch watching and listening to people who were quite clearly living their dream on-stage. The one thing I felt was missing though, was smokiness to the room. When I conjure up idealised images in my mind of a jazz bar, the air needs to be thick with cigar smoke but this bar is surprisingly fresh.

I would never call myself a jazz fan but The Orbit really opened my mind. I can honestly recommend it to anyone who is looking for something a little different to do in Johannesburg. Jump to their website to see their upcoming events and if you need an appreciation for jazz, check out Emily Bruce.