The 39 best podcasts you need to listen to right now

The team recommends their favourite podcasts – from politics to comedy to real life stories

Podcasts are everywhere in 2018. But how do you find shows that are actually good?

To answer this question, the team has sorted the proverbial wheat from the chaff, the brilliant from the merely mediocre. We have pulled together our top recommendations – in no particular order – from podcasts that will make you laugh to podcasts that will make you cry.

Fortunately… with Fi and Jane

Nothing warms the cockles more than the sound of two incredibly sharp, intelligent and mischievous women discussing totally random things for 40 odd minutes. BBC Radio veterans Fi Glover and Jane Garvey have one special guest per episode and discuss everything from Marxism to sex positions. [ . . . ]

Read the complete list at RADIO TIMES: The 39 best podcasts you need to listen to right now


The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry, Series 12, The Stressful Scone

Why do we have regional accents?

“How do accents start and where did they come from?” asks Sachin Bahal from Toronto in Canada.

Hannah is schooled in speaking Geordie by top accent coach Marina Tyndall. And Adam talks to author and acoustics expert Trevor Cox about how accents evolved and why they persist.

We meet Debie who has Foreign Accent Syndrome – an extremely rare condition in which your accent can change overnight. After a severe bout of flu, which got progressively worse, Debie’s Brummie accent suddenly transformed into something distinctively more European.

Listen to the podcast at: BBC Radio 4 – The Curious Cases of Rutherford & Fry, Series 12, The Stressful Scone

Linda Thompson leads a salute to Britain’s music halls of days gone by

By Bruce Sylvester

In the 1970s and early ’80s, dusky-voiced Linda Thompson with her singer/writer/guitarist husband Richard won cult status for their dark discs echoing trad folk amid the rock.

She was born Linda Pettifer in London on August 23, 1947. When she was six, her parents moved the family back to their native Scotland. After growing up in Glasgow, she returned to London for university. Gravitating to its folk clubs, she sang as Linda Peters. She and Richard (whom she wed in 1972) had three children: Muna, singer/writer/producer Teddy, and Kami, who sings with her husband James Walbourne in the Rails.

Shoot Out the Lights (1982) marked the fiery end of her and Richard’s marriage and musical collaborations. The breakup fed into pain-drenched songs each subsequently wrote. In 1984, she sang in National Theatre’s production of medieval mystery plays. Her solo debut album, 1985’s One Clear Moment, included “Telling Me Lies” (her co-write with Betsy Cook), which garnered a 1987 Grammy nomination for Best Country Song after Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt, and Emmylou Harris covered it on Trio.

Then dysphonia (a condition impacting her voice and ability to sing) kept her from putting out albums until drolly titled Fashionably Late in 2002. Her most recent solo, Won’t Be Long Now, came out on Pettifer Sounds in 2013.

Flashback to 2005, when she organized My Mother Doesn’t Know I’m on the Stage, a salute to Britain’s music hall entertainment of the 19th and 20th centuries offering plenty of laughter with tears too. On stage at the Lyric Hammersmith in London, its performers included son Teddy, son-in-law Walbourne, and family friends such as Martha Wainwright, actor Colin Firth, and, from the trans community, Justin Vivian Bond. Now, fashionably late, a CD of the show has been released on Omnivore Records.

Here Linda Thompson talks with Goldmine via email about music halls and more.

Goldmine: Is the CD’s humor especially British (say, the title track and “I Might Learn to Love Him Later On”)?

Linda Thompson: Let’s take “I Might Learn to Love Him Later On” about a young women marrying a rich older man. Is that British? Ask Melania. Continue reading

100th Episode TV Special, The Infinite Monkey Cage


Brian Cox and Robin Ince present a TV special of their hit science/comedy panel show.

Brian Cox and Robin Ince celebrate the 100th episode of their hit science/comedy show, by inviting some very well known monkey cage alumni to join them. Brian Blessed, Eric Idle, Katy Brand, Dave Gorman and Andy Hamilton (to name a few) take to the stage to consider what has been learnt since Episode 1, back in November 2009. Joining them are science royalty, including Alice Roberts, American astrophysicist Neil De Grasse Tyson, Prof Sue Black and Prof Fay Dowker, to look at the big scientific discoveries that have happened in the time since Brian and Robin first hit the airwaves.


Source: 100th Episode TV Special, The Infinite Monkey Cage – BBC Radio 4