There are tens of thousands of podcasts out there. So how do you know what to listen to? On The Big Listen — THE broadcast about podcasts from WAMU and NPR — host Lauren Ober introduces you to podcasts you might not have ever heard of, and gives you the inside scoop on shows you already love. Through interviews, listener recommendations, show snippets and more, The Big Listen helps you curate your perfect playlist.
Lauren Ober is the host of The Big Listen. Before taking the helm, she was an award-winning radio producer for WAMU’s weekly newsmagazine, Metro Connection. Her stories have been heard on public radio shows like NPR’s All Things Considered and Morning Edition, Here and Now, PRI’s The World and Latino USA, as well as podcasts like Criminal, 99% Invisible, Gravy and KCRW’s Unfictional. Previously, Lauren served as producer of PRX’s Orbital Path about the cosmos and our place in it.
In 2015, Lauren was a recipient of the French American Foundation Immigration Journalism Fellowship and traveled to Russia to report on LGBT immigration. Currently, Lauren is a board member of the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR). She is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, American University and the Transom Story Workshop. A proud Pittsburgh native, Lauren has a deep and abiding love for pierogi. She currently lives in the 51st state with her recalcitrant mutt, Raffie.
Jacob Fenston edits stories and special projects at WAMU. He is also responsible for the sound design, editing and production of The Big Listen. He has produced and edited WAMU’s Metro Connection, and reported feature stories for the show. His work has also appeared on national shows, including NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Here & Now, and has been recognized by regional and national awards. But his best story ever did not win any awards, even though it required recording audio while riding a bicycle the wrong way down busy Oakland, Calif. streets.
Before coming to WAMU, Jacob was a reporter at KBIA in Columbia, Mo., covering issues of health, wealth and poverty in the rural Midwest. In a previous life, he was a stage manager for a theater company in Portland, Oregon. While in Oregon, he started producing radio as a volunteer at community radio station KBOO. Jacob is a native of the great state of California, and has a masters in journalism from U.C. Berkeley.