A Podcast Sampler

March 19th, 2022

In March of 2022, I turn 50 years old. In the interest of trying to live as long as I possibly can, for the last few years I’ve done a lot of walking. I typically walk (or jog when the weather is agreeable) first thing in the morning. I’m not a big music person, so I usually listen to various podcasts while walking. 

Remember Whitman’s Sampler? You know, the assortment of various chocolates in a gift box? (Avoid the weird orange-or-pink-filled ones and you’re good to go.) Well, below is a ‘Sampler’ of the various podcasts I listen to on a regular basis. I’ve included a link, brief description and my comments. This is intentionally not a huge list, but rather my own curated batch of podcasts – it’s a manageable amount such that I can stay on top of them and keep up with each episode.  Enjoy!

Finance and Economics

Personal finance is of keen interest to me (as well as a necessity for most people, in my opinion). Likewise, I enjoy learning about economics – supply & demand, incentives, unintended consequences of policies and decisions, etc. There are tons of podcasts on these topics but these are the ones I listen to on a regular basis.

The Money Guy Show – These two financial advisors give great advice, some universal and often based on your age or financial situation. A few listens and you’ll be talking about the “3 bucket strategy” and striving to become a “financial mutant.” The advice can get repetitive, but the episodes are entertaining and informative, the two hosts work well together and complement each other, and I listen to every episode if, for no other reason than to reinforce good financial habits.

Planet Money – Produced by NPR, this podcast features a revolving group of hosts and each episode gives good insights into current economic conditions or tells an interesting story related to an economic concept. Recent episodes on inflation, the Hormel Foods strike of the 1980s, why M&M packages are different sizes were standouts for me.

The Indicator – Another podcast produced by NPR, this is an offshoot of Planet Money and focuses on a single economic indicator with each episode. A bite-sized podcast – each episode is less than 10 minutes long – that gives you a daily dose of insight into our economy.

Freakonomics – Brought to you by the co-author of the Freakonomics books, this podcast uncovers the “hidden side of everything.” These episodes are typically deep-dives into topics that are sometimes only tangentially related to economic principles. If you have an interest in the episode topic, then you will appreciate the level of detail the creators put into their work.

Science and Technology

As a software engineer, I have a keen interest in technology. I also like to educate myself on the world around us and, generally, how things work. You can definitely categorize the following podcasts as ‘educational’ but they are wrapped in an entertaining package and I find listening to them makes my time fly by.

Unsung Science – Brought to you by author and technologist, David Pogue, this podcast dives into the lesser-known stories behind great technological achievements. Season 1 just concluded and I’m really hoping there is a season 2. Pogue is a really good storyteller and I greatly enjoyed most of the topics.

Land of the Giants – This limited series podcast is well-produced and well-researched and methodically devotes each “season” to one of the major Big Tech firms to have emerged in the last decade or so (Google, Netflix, Apple, Uber, Amazon). Being “of a certain age” also brings an air of nostalgia as I listened to many of these episodes and was reminded of various major tech events like the introduction of the iPhone, the downfall of Blockbuster and when Amazon literally only sold books.


When I was (much) younger I would participate in virtually any and all sports – well, no skating, but I did play floor hockey! These days I enjoy watching lots of different sports but I’d say my favorite is NFL football. I also like learning about the business of sports and sports media. You’ll see both of these influences reflected in my sports podcast choices below.

Sports Illustrated Media Podcast – Jimmy Traina is the host of this podcast that is all about the sports media business. I really enjoy the guests Jimmy is able to get and towards the end of this last NFL season he got some big ones (e.g., Troy Aikman, Joe Buck, Al Michaels, Jim Nantz). Jimmy is also a New Yorker, so he and I see eye-to-eye on a lot of things. Every now and then he interviews and talks Pro Wrestling – definitely a polarizing topic for most people.

The Bill Simmons Podcast – I’ve been listening to Bill Simmons for a loooong time. He’s a huge and unabashed Boston sports fan, so you have to know that going in. But when it’s NFL season, I find his weekly episodes with “Cousin Sal” from Jimmy Kimmel Live show to be must-listen. They break down every game, give their opinions on tons of NFL topics and make it fun. His other episodes throughout the year are hit or miss for me.

Against All Odds – Even with the crazy explosion of gambling apps, I don’t gamble. But I do find “Cousin Sal” entertaining, and this is his all-about-sports-gambling podcast. It’s definitely not for everyone – if you’re not into sports gambling then don’t bother – but I enjoy the analysis (again, especially during the NFL season).

The Distraction: A Defector podcast – Drew Magary is one of my favorite authors/bloggers and this is his podcast. This is another one that is hit-or-miss depending on the episode topic. I usually check the episode summary and if the topic sounds fun or interesting, I’ll give it a listen.


There are tons of podcasts about movies, tv shows, music and other entertainment areas. When it comes to TV Shows, there are a lot of excellent shows on the various streaming services. If you decide to ‘binge-watch’ one of these prestige shows, it’s fun to see if there is a related podcast where fans recap and discuss each episode. Below I have an example of one such podcast that I found was very well done.

The Rewatchables – This is another podcast from Bill Simmons and friends. Essentially they discuss and dissect a movie in each episode that is ‘rewatchable’ – i.e., a show that snatches your attention if you happen to come across it. They’ve done over 200 movies.  My suggestion is to review the episode list and give a listen to one IF you really enjoyed the movie.

Cast of Thrones – As I described above, this is an example of an excellent podcast that complements a great TV show. The hosts review the episode’s plot and have a good amount of knowledge of the lore of the show. This was an excellent podcast to listen to after watching each episode of Game of Thrones.

As an aside: If you know of a good podcast that recaps the show Ozark, let me know. We’re midway through season 2. 🙂


Another way to discover good podcasts is to think about your hobbies and interests. A couple of examples from my life are below.

Stuff You Should Know – A very interesting podcast that I would classify as “general education.” The (very personable) hosts go over a specific, interesting topic with each episode – the topics are very eclectic. You’ll learn all the details and instantly feel smarter. Some recent topics include Leeches, How Moss Works, Tabloids and National Parks.

Two Bees in a Podcast – Are you a beekeeper? I am! And so this podcast is extremely interesting to me. Lots of great info about beekeeping, research into bee behavior and the latest info on beekeeping methods and equipment. Highly recommended for this, admittedly, niche audience.

Out of Left Field

Zack to the Future – Alright this one is kind of embarrassing. Like a few people my age, I used to like watching Saved By the Bell. Well, this podcast is a bit of an homage to that show. The creator of the very funny Zack Morris Is Trash series of videos joins with Zack himself, actor Mark-Paul Gosselaar, and the two review episodes of the classic high school tv show. Mark-Paul is self-deprecating (almost to an annoying degree) and provides some interesting insights into the making of a show where child actors became big stars.


So there you have it. A listing of my favorite podcasts from various categories. My suggestion is to think about the interests and hobbies in your life, search and listen! Preview episodes by reviewing their descriptions and sampling them. Talk to your friends and see what they are listening to.

I hope you enjoyed my list; feel free to reach out to me, make suggestions and give me some feedback – I’m always interested in discovering new podcasts.

At Solution Street, we strive to create our own ‘Sampler’ of great employees. We encourage all of our developers to continually learn and grow, adding more languages, frameworks and tools to their toolsets. We have employees with a wide variety of outside interests (music, pizza-making, painting, golf and, of course, beekeeping, just to name a few). If you’re in the software development field and want to learn more about Solution Street, contact me!