The Big Listen ended production in May 2018. While this site is no longer updated, all the content remains available for archive purposes.
Hey, pals! It’s a holiday weekend here in America.
And that means it’s road trip time! So pack up the kids, put the dog on the car roof and let’s hit the asphalt! This week, The Big Listen is traveling the highways and byways of this great nation to find out what makes it tick. There are so many good shows out there highlighting the unique corners of our nation and the people who live in them, from the mountains of Vermont, to the high plains of Wyoming, to the streets of Los Angeles. So we’re putting rubber to the road to check some of them out. Friend of the show, Nicole Washington, is coming along with us to help us pick snacks and podcasts (The Read being her number one). So buckle up! And don’t text and drive. Srsly.
- Nicole Washington Friend of the show!
- Jessica Lilly Host, Inside Appalachia
- Laine Kaplan-Levenson Host, TriPod: New Orleans at 300
- Amy Westervelt Co-host, Range: Stories of the New American West
- Julia Ritchey Co-host, Range: Stories of the New American West
What Else Is On This Week’s Show?
First stop on the Big Listen Thanksgiving road trip extravaganza: Appalachia. We cruise through West Virginia to visit with our friends at Inside Appalachia from West Virginia Public Broadcasting. West Virginia was in the news a lot during the presidential election as now President-Elect Donald Trump made promises about bringing coal jobs back. We talk to host Jessica Lilly about coal, as well as the correct pronunciation of the region (it’s APP-uh-LATCH-uh, like I’m going to throw an apple atcha).
Next, we roulez on down to visit with our pals at WWNO in the Big Easy to hear how that city is preparing for a very big birthday. If you have ever been to New Orleans, it is hard not to fall in love with it. The food, the music … the debauchery. But the Crescent City is so much more than Mardi Gras and Jazz Fest and drunk bachelorettes stumbling down Bourbon Street. And the podcast TriPod: New Orleans at 300, hosted by Laine Kaplan-Levenson, is all about showcasing the city’s deep history. All 300 years of it.
Finally, we journey across the mighty Mississippi and beyond the Continental Divide to take a hike with the good folks at Range: Stories of the New American West. The podcast is hosted by Amy Westervelt and Julia Ritchey, two veteran public radio reporters who are now based in the Reno Lake Tahoe area. The show looks at how the region is evolving from a place of cow towns and desert brothels to high-tech hubs and modern-day pioneers. Reno — it’s not just for cops in short shorts anymore.
– Very attractive listener recommendations for this week: Our Hen House and Drunken Peasants
– As we do each week, let’s check the charts! Or rather, the 289th-ranked podcast on iTunes: The Rich Poll Podcast. Rich Roll (not to be confused with Rick Roll) is an “ultra-athlete, wellness evangelist and bestselling author” who has a podcast about living your best life. He’s like Oprah, but for vegan white guys.
– Best podcast title of the week: Alison Rosen Is Your New Best Friend
Do you have a podcast recommendation you’d like to share with us? We want to hear it! Give us a jingle on the Pod Line at 202-885-POD1 and leave a message. Then we’ll put you on the radio and you’ll be famous.
Thanks for reading, pals! ‘Til next time…keep listening, America.
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