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PHILADELPHIA’S PREMIER PODCAST/INTERNET RADIO RECORDING STUDIO Let us record or host your podcast! 24/7 streaming through our website starting May 16.

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he ability of podcasts to dig deep into stories and subjects is one element we love about them. Think Serial, and the 80 million listeners riveted by Sarah Koenig and her team delving into the minutiae of a 1989 murder case. And Undisclosed, which has picked up where Serial left off and made even more discoveries about the possible miscarriage of justice in the prosecution of Adnan Syed. We’re proud to have Undisclosed’s Colin Miller as a contributing editor to Podster, and we’re looking forward to interviewing him and his co-hosts in the next issue of Podster about the new cases they will be covering in Season 2 of Undisclosed. In this issue we talk to four hosts who create fascinating podcasts by digging deep. In Criminal, Phoebe Judge tells “stories of people who’ve done wrong, been wronged, or gotten caught somewhere in the middle,” from a bank robber to a mother-daughter coroner team. Esquire Classics’ David Brancaccio (a voice you know from public radio’s Marketplace) revisits classic stories from Photo by Debra Pandak

Click HERE to sign up for for FREE. Esquire magazine, often along with writers such as Gay Talese or Susan Orlean, in a celebration of great writing, great writers, and precise snapshots of American life. In Between the Liner Notes, Matthew Billy uses a documentary style to explore subjects related to music, such as the life of Tiny Tim of “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” fame or the story of how recording equipment recovered from Nazi Germany made its way to the studio of Bing Crosby. And no one digs deeper than data analysts Nate Silver, Clare Malone, Harry Enten, and Jody Avirgan at 538 Elections, which entertainingly examines polls related to the 2016 elections. So dig into the issue, fellow Podsters. I hope you enjoy it. MARGARET BROWN PUBLISHER/EDITOR 5


interview nterview interview

Phoebe Judge: Criminal thisiscriminal.com

In Criminal, Phoebe Judge tells “stories of people who’ve done wrong, been wronged, or gotten caught somewhere in the middle.”

LISTEN

: Where did the idea for Criminal come from? PHOEBE JUDGE: Criminal co-creator Lauren Spohrer and I were working at a National Public Radio show called The Story with Dick Gordon. I was guest hosting it and doing on-air stuff. One day Lauren and I were sitting around and talking about a show that we could create together—a 6

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show that I could host. Lauren said, “What about crime? There’s no public radio show about crime and it’s something that, whether people want to admit it or not, they love.” I thought that was the smartest thing I’d ever heard. I realized that we were never going to run out of stories. So we brought along Eric Mennel, who was also working at The Story with us, and the three of us began Criminal, not knowing if we were going to have any listeners. This was two-and-a-half years ago, and we knew it would have been hard to get a public radio show right away. But the idea of a podcast allowed for freedom—not only to just do it, to start it and put it out there, but also in terms of format and time. So that’s how Criminal started. PODSTER: It’s not a police procedural kind of storytelling show. How did you


figure out what your format and approach were going to be? PHOEBE: Our goal was to never be a type of show where we are sensationalizing, over-dramatizing, or exploiting crime. For us the most interesting thing was the idea of the human experience of crime and the fact that crime touches people’s lives in a number of different ways. Also, crime is not always the tragic, gory stuff that often comes out in true crime programming. What we wanted to do was to explore crime in that broad sense, and to use this umbrella of crime to show the wide range of stories that fall under it. So that’s why sometimes we have things about petrified wood being stolen in Arizona and the next show will be about a very sad murder. PODSTER: How do you go about finding your stories? PHOEBE: We’re always looking for new things. I woke up this morning and I started thinking about a matic— you know, that old-fashioned tool that you use to break up the garden? And that matic started me thinking about crime that had been done with tools, and all of a sudden I’m online and looking at a hardware store in Kansas City’s website and at crimes that might have happened in Kansas City. You just allow yourself to go anywhere with these things, and the wonderful thing about having our own show is that we do stories that are genuinely interesting to

us. We don’t usually pick topics because we think we should be covering that topic. There are exceptions to that, of course, but most of the time it’s things we want to do because we want to know more about the person or the thing that happened. That’s the criteria. Of course, it has to be crime, but other than that, it’s things that interest us. And there’s always a personal story, a personal narrative. It’s not just me and a bunch of talking heads talking about a crime or a topic. We’re always looking for the personal connection. PODSTER: I love the one about the Treaty Oak in Austin, Texas. How did you come upon that one? PHOEBE: There are only two or three episodes that have come directly from listeners and that was one of them. A woman wrote in from Austin and said, “I think there’s this story about this tree down here you might want to—” and we looked into it and said, “Oh my God, of course, that’s so perfect for Criminal.” Then we worked to find the right voice and the people we thought should be part of the story. PODSTER: Another one I really liked was the Texas bank robber. PHOEBE: Clay Tumey. I had been wanting to do a story about bank robbers; I’ve always wanted to know how you’d go about robbing a bank—the actual specifics of it. So when Clay said to me, “Phoebe, come down here and I’ll show you what I did,” I thought it was perfect. That’s what really drew us. Of course, there was the twist of a bank robber who wanted to get caught or doing it just because he was bored, but also the thought that I would be with him and he could show me how he did it. 7


PHOEBE LISTENS TO

Serial “A podcast from the creators of This American Life. One story. Told week by week. Hosted by Sarah Koenig.” The Allusionist “The Allusionist is a podcast about language and etymology by Helen Zaltzman for Radiotopia from PRX.” 99 Percent Invisible “99% Invisible is about all the thought that goes into the things we don’t think about—the unnoticed architecture and design that shape our world.”

Surprisingly Awesome “Hosted by Adam McKay and Adam Davidson. The show reveals the hidden awesomeness in everyday things.” 8

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Fresh Air “Fresh Air from WHYY, the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues, is one of public radio’s most popular programs. Hosted by Terry Gross, the show features intimate conversations with today’s biggest luminaries.”

Another Round “Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton cover everything from race, gender and pop culture to squirrels, mangoes, and bad jokes, all in one boozy show.” The Dave Ramsey Show “The Dave Ramsey Show is about real life and how it revolves around money. Dave Ramsey teaches you to manage and budget your money, get out of debt, build wealth, and live in financial peace.”


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PODSTER: Why do you think we’re so fascinated by crime stories? PHOEBE: I think crime touches on every human emotion that we’ve got. Crime is often exciting and tragic and scary and emotional. There are these built-in emotions that come with crime, because someone is being wronged or doing something wrong to someone and so of course we’re drawn to stories like this. There are also so many things about crime that are taboo. We’re drawn to topics that we think we shouldn’t be. And crime stories usually have a built-in narrative arc. We don’t have to hunt hard to find the arc of the story when we’re dealing with crime stories. All these reasons make crime intriguing. There are so many ways in which our lives are touched by crime, but we never actually will be part of the criminal world. What’s that line that makes us not walk into a bank and rob it, but why am I so intrigued by how I would do that? I think that’s what draws us to these stories about crime.

petrified wood theft in Arizona. It’s called “Triassic Park.” I think the people that we found to talk to are just so interesting.

PODSTER: In these stories, you’re really getting inside people’s heads. Is your opinion about crime and criminals different than it was when you started? PHOEBE: No. I think that what has changed is this idea of someone being a criminal and that being all they are. I used to have this idea that if you had murdered someone, you were a murderer and that was something that you could never shake off and that’s the only way you would ever be known. I remember I interviewed this man who had committed a murder, and I was trying to skirt around the word. He finally said, “Yeah, just spit it out. I’m a murderer, but that’s not all I am. That was an act. That was something that I did, but I’ve done all these other things too.” I had this idea of some of these crimes being so big and horrible and bad, that how could you see anything but that label. I’ve learned now that it’s more complex than that. I’m appreciating that more. I’m also appreciating and learning about victims PODSTER: Do you have a favorite episode of crime in the same way. We have this thought about a victim of a crime being so or one that you’re particularly proud of? PHOEBE: Lauren and I talk about this a lot. shaped by something that’s happened to them that they can’t think about it or go on. We both have our own favorite episodes. I’ve been trying to skirt around topics with I’m certainly proud of “695BGK,” which is someone that had a vicious, horrible thing about the shooting of an unarmed black happen to them and they’ve kind of been man in Texas. That’s one that Lauren really able to say to me, “Phoebe, let me explain championed and we worked pretty hard on that. I love episode four which is called “Call it to you.” They’ve been able to say, “I know you’re coming at this with great caution but Your Mom” about a mother and daughter you don’t really have to. It’s okay. We can coroner team in Wyoming. I just love it because it’s so odd and the family dynamics talk about these things.” I’ve been really surprised at how open people are to talking that are coming through are so interesting about horrible, horrible things. to me. I also love that episode about the 10

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Tell Your Story, Become A Thought Leader, Build An Audience. Learn how to start your own podcast today with our free video series at:

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interview nterview interview

David Brancaccio: The Esquire Classic Podcast classic.esquire.com/the-esquire-classic-podcast

Marketplace’s David Brancaccio revisits classic stories from Esquire magazine in a celebration of great writing, great writers, and precise snapshots of American life. From PRX

LISTEN

DAVID BRANCACCIO: There’s a moment that I just love—I’ve been telling as many people as I can. We’re doing the podcast interview with none other than Gay Talese, one of the great, great writers. He’s written the piece “Frank Sinatra Has a Cold,” this very deep profile of Frank Sinatra from 1966 in which he never directly meets Sinatra. The reader that time was Vincent Piazza, who’s an actor who’s been in the movie Jersey Boys and in Boardwalk Empire. 12

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He’s reading a scene from the original piece in which Talese sees Sinatra from 20 meters away in a bar as a confrontation arises between Sinatra and a famous science fiction writer, Harlan Ellison. Piazza is reading the original piece, an extended section. I look over at Talese and he’s got this fascinating look on his face. He is clearly projecting the film of the original incident onto the back of his head. He’s completely immersed in the original story. So by extension I’m looking at Talese and I feel I’m in that saloon in Beverly Hills with Sinatra 20 meters away. It was so cool. It was this really authentic moment for me, which is: he didn’t make this stuff up—he was sitting where he said he was sitting. PODSTER: Listening to that episode made me want to go back and read the original piece. Talese’s writing is just


masterful. Are you involved in picking the stories from Esquire’s 50,000-piece archive? DAVID: I actually insisted that I be part of the process. But Esquire knows its own archive the best. They also have a sense of who’s available. I have a sense of what’s interesting given the last three that we did. I have a sense of news and news pegs and so forth. But also I’m hungry to meet as many of these people who have written these things as possible. It’s a group effort to choose the stories but then we have to take into account if there’s an Esquire writer who’s in town for something and is there a piece that we’ve always wanted to talk to the person about? For example, in episode 14 we talk to one of the many great Esquire writers, Mike Sager. He’s quite a rock and roll sort of reporter—embeds with drug dealers in super-scary, intense settings. He’s normally assigned to these very tough, edgy pieces, but years ago, around the time that Susan Orlean was doing the piece in which she did not profile McCauley Culkin as assigned but instead profiled a random 10-yearold boy in Ridgewood, NJ, Esquire said to Sager, “Why don’t you interview a random 92-year-old man?” And he finds the world’s greatest one because he’s a wonderful, interesting guy living in a retirement community in Sun City, one of the originals out near Phoenix. The guy had kept careful notes and had an archive held in his garage. So when the gentleman would fall asleep

for a nap, the writer had permission to go to the garage and essentially download the guy’s previous brain and get a lot of details that the guy in his 90s may have set aside or forgotten. So Sager wrote a very, very unsettling but really interesting piece about one way that people get old in America. We ran this episode a few weeks after we had done the episode about the 10-year-old boy. PODSTER: I loved that one. DAVID: Wasn’t that great? Susan Orlean and I had a lot of chemistry. I hadn’t met her before. I loved reading the original piece that it’s based upon. I live in New Jersey and I can just imagine that kid. But I think it doesn’t matter. You don’t have to live in New Jersey. Everybody can imagine that kid. But she got the great kid. In the piece you heard she was terrified about what if the kid was laconic? What if he was super shy, because he clammed up the first couple of days as anybody would. Then he opened up. PODSTER: I was really struck by how much “The Price of Being President” by Richard Ben Cramer, an Esquire article about the 1988 presidential election, sounded like it could have been written about today’s campaign. DAVID: Richard Ben Cramer is one of our greatest writers. He’s no longer with us, sadly. The 1988 presidential election is not even old enough history to be fascinating, but it turns out that within it are keys to understanding the current election, but you need a guide. Then you can draw the audience’s attention to that stuff and it unlocks these original pieces that you would have thought are sort of dusty and deserve to be in some sort of dusty archive. But a lot of these do stand the test of time. 13


DAVID LISTENS TO

The Tobolowsky Files “The actor Stephen Tobolowsky’s yarns about his life are gripping. You know Tobolowsky, the bald guy from Groundhog Day? That guy.”    Codebreaker “With my colleague Ben Johnson. Great stuff on, for instance, is technology evil or not. (Hint, sometimes it’s pretty evil).”   

Dinner Party Download “With my colleagues Brendan and Rico. Gets me ready to be scintillating when I’m snapping on my cufflinks. Plus, the guests are A-list.”

Internet Explorer “Making weird, wise connections throughout the cyberverse.”

Actuality “With my colleague Sabri Ben Achour and Tim Fernholz at Quartz, making cool connections in the globalized world.” 14

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audioBoom The world’s leading spoken-word audio plaaorm. 3000 content creators use us to host, distribute and moneese their spoken-word audio content. Join us. For free. choose.audioboom.com 15


PODSTER: Do you have a favorite episode? DAVID: Favorite. It’s like choosing your favorite child. I don’t. I felt a sense that fortune had visited us when I did the first one. That’s Tom Junod doing “Falling Man.” For people who haven’t heard it yet, when you hear what the general topic is you may have the reaction I had when they said, “Hey, let’s do this one for the first one.” That’s the famous picture of 9/11 of the man tumbling elegantly, bizarrely from the World Trade Center. I thought, “Do we have to do that? I know the image. I’ve seen it in the museum in D.C. a number of times, but I would prefer to keep blocking it. I don’t want it to be resurrected from my subconscious.” So then I read the piece, and the piece is amazing. I went over to the Esquire studio and Tom was there. He tells his story in a very strong way. You can hear it in the piece. Tom tells this amazing story about how a younger reporter, who was less seasoned, in the days after 9/11 misreported the story and strongly suggested the person in the famous photograph of the falling man was one person when it probably wasn’t and by accident did some harm to the family of the person who was misidentified. It had very significant consequences in the way that that family reacted to that original piece. A couple of years later, Tom takes another look at the photo. He doesn’t set out to figure out who’s in the photo. He’s doing something larger about the symbolism, the significance, how that photo was effectively suppressed, actively suppressed. We don’t see it very often partly because it’s just too hard. But along the way he pretty much figures out who is in the photo. That man’s family reacts to Tom’s inquiries quite 16

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differently, dare I say in a healthy way? I don’t know if it brings the family together in any way but it’s a different reaction from the first family. It’s very important that people hear that. Tom really pulls it off. The elegance of his writing is the driving force but he also tells the story very well. So it’s kind of fun to have both versions, the voice of the original piece as expressed by Cindy Katz, the actor reading it, and then Tom in real time. I’ve listened to that episode about 10 times. It’s an intense subject. I find it moving somehow. PODSTER: I just listened to “Death of Patient Zero” by Tom Junod. That was really moving. All of these are very memorable. DAVID: It’s interesting what happens. The work that I do for American Public Media with Marketplace is pretty intense. I’m on the air six times a day and it’s a bit being an airline captain. We’re really focused for six or seven hours every day to the exclusion of everything else and hopefully the plane lands safely on the other side. But with the Esquire stuff I’ll read the pieces on the weekend—some of them are tens of thousands of words. If you get fully immersed in those original magazine pieces you feel you understand the world better after the experience. It’s been really fun for me to do the prep necessary, and then you have the added depth when you sit down and learn from the interview itself. We all resolve to read Anna Karenina again or Moby Dick. But we don’t have time. I don’t want to quite compare these little podcasts to anything like that, but you want to make yourself a better person by delving into meatier topics and the podcasts have really helped me do that. With 50,000 of these Esquire pieces we’re not going to run out any time soon.


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interview nterview interview

Jody Avirgan: FiveThirtyEight Elections fivethirtyeight.com

Statistical analysis of the 2016 presidential election is as informative as it is entertaining in the hands of Nate Silver, Clare Malone, Harry Enten, and Jody Avirgan.

LISTEN

: How did you decide to do the FiveThirtyEight Elections podcast? JODY AVIRGAN: We launched a sports podcast first, then we launched another show that I host which is about data, and then we launched the elections podcast. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to set up a podcast feed that could be a 18

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place for a lot of stuff to go into. A lot of people get hung up on making a show and having people subscribe to a show, but I really wanted a feed that would include some regular elements but where we would also have the ability to do shorter stuff and experiment. It’s been really liberating because it means if you have a good idea it doesn’t have to sustain an entire independent show. For FiveThirtyEight Elections, we had a bunch of meetings last winter where we talked about what we wanted it to be. Would we want it to be like Freakonomics, or like Planet Money? Did we want it to be heavily produced? At one point Nate said, “yes, we want to do all of these things and be ambitious but let’s not overthink it. People just want to hear us talk.” So that’s become the drumbeat every Monday, and occasionally other times, of a


chat show with occasional collaborations and documentaries in the feed. I think it’s a nice mix. PODSTER: Have you always been a numbers geek? JODY: I have not. Part of my job is to bridge the gap between the numbers geeks at FiveThirtyEight and the general audience. I have an analytical mind but I can’t jump into a spreadsheet. I’m not a programmer. I don’t know any of that stuff. But I’m curious and my job is to be a proxy for the audience, to think of what the audience would want and push back in the way that I think an average listener would push back. I try to clarify what needs clarifying but mostly I just facilitate and help ideas come across. People tend to have a one-dimensional view of FiveThirtyEight, that we’re a bunch of nerds behind our spreadsheets and aren’t engaged with the real world and think that everything can be reduced to numbers. That’s not true, and I think all our podcasting efforts have been helpful in showing our personalities and that we’re not just number crunchers. We’re people, and numbers are just one part (albeit a big part) of the narrative. PODSTER: Your chemistry with each other is really great. JODY: That didn’t just happen. We worked at it; we did a bunch of piloting. We thought about how to establish it, but mostly it was just that we really enjoy each other’s company. I find myself getting

PODSTER: Do you still play regularly? JODY: I don’t play for super-competitive club teams anymore, but I still play pretty good pick-up games on the weekend. And I’ve been doing some coaching. It’s a great sport, and it’s a great community, too. There’s actually a podcast and Ultimate crossover. Joe Richman from Radio Diaries played Ultimate; Steve Henn, who used to be with Marketplace and is starting his own podcast company, went to the same college that I did and played there; and Matt Lieber from Gimlet played a little bit here and there. PODSTER: That’s kind of funny. I wonder what the common denominator is. JODY: To be honest, the common denominator is probably privileged white people who went to elite small liberal arts colleges, which are where Ultimate had its roots and where a lot of podcasters have come from. Unfortunately, podcasting is still stuck in that world.

JODY LISTENS TO

excited every Sunday night and Monday morning because I know we’re going to tape that afternoon. That’s a good sign. PODSTER: I Googled you and saw you are an Ultimate Frisbee player. JODY: Yeah, I’m one of these people who take it way too seriously.

The Brian Lehrer Show Weekend “Host Brian Lehrer leads the conversation about what matters most now in local and national politics, our own communities and our lives.” 19


JODY LISTENS TO

On Being “On Being with Krista Tippett takes up the big questions of meaning with scientists and theologians, artists and teachers.” Slate’s Political Gabfest “Each week the Slate Gabfest Team of Emily Bazelon, John Dickerson and David Plotz focus their attention on the week’s high profile political developments.” On The Media “Hosts Brooke Gladstone and Bob Garfield examine threats to free speech and government transparency, cast a skeptical eye on media coverage of the week’s big stories and unravel hidden political narratives in everything we read, watch and hear.” Love + Radio “Nick van der Kolk’s Love and Radio features in-depth, otherworldlyproduced interviews with an eclectic range of subjects, from the seedy to the sublime.” 20

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Song Exploder “Song Exploder is a podcast where musicians take apart their songs, and piece by piece, tell the story of how they were made.”

You Must Remember This “The podcast about the secret and/or forgotten history of Hollywood’s first century.” Another Round “Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton cover everything from race, gender and pop culture to squirrels, mangoes, and bad jokes, all in one boozy show.”


Longform “A weekly conversation with a non-fiction writer about how they got their start and how they tell stories. ”

PODSTER: Is that changing at all? JODY: There’s more talk of it needing to change than there is actual change. But some places are certainly making efforts. Buzzfeed makes diversity a huge priority, and is stronger for it. Public radio is a little behind. As we start to grow, I hope we can be a leader on this.

PODSTER: One of the things you talk about with some derision is the candidates referencing their own poll numbers in their speeches. Is that a new thing, or were politicians doing that previously? JODY: Donald Trump talks about his polls all the time, so I think that’s new, among the many other things that Donald Trump is doing that are new. But part of what we’re seeing is that polling and data have become part of the eco-system of political journalism, so inevitably that’s going to affect the way politicians talk as well. There’s more attention to polls, and I think to some extent Nate is part of the reason for that. He’s had success in 2008 and 2012 and he’s carved out a niche for numbers. From the beginning we wanted the podcast to be in this niche but also to take a step back and talk about the use of data, often the bad use of data.

PODSTER: When you started FiveThirtyEight Elections, did you have any idea this election would be as fascinating as it is? JODY: I tend to think most elections are fascinating, but I think this one has exceeded what we could have imagined. We launched the podcast kind of late—about a week before Iowa, and it was already crazy at that point. We already knew Trump was more than just a flash in the pan. I figured our podcast was going to have a built-in audience because Nate is extremely well known and talented [statistician Nate Silver earned fame and a following for predicting the outcomes of 49 of the 50 states in the 2008 presidential election and of all 50 states in the 2012 presidential election]. But launching in the thick of it meant that it went from zero to 60 really fast.

PODSTER: On the podcast you talk about how polling has changed from pollsters calling landlines to other potentially less effective means such as online polling. What do you think a good polling system is going to look like in the future? JODY: That’s the kind of question I would want to ask Nate and Harry and Clare on the podcast. From what I’ve learned from them, it seems like we have to figure out Internet polling. It can’t be this thing that is spotty and unreliable; someone’s got to figure it out. That said, some of the polls have been pretty accurate this election so far, and of all the different ways to get the temperature of a race, polling is still one of the more reliable tools.

Pistol Shrimps Radio “Get the thrilling courtside action delivered straight to your ears by venerable sports acknowledgers Matt Gourley and Mark McConville.”

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interview nterview interview

Matthew Billy: Between the Liner Notes betweenthelinernotes.com

Matthew Billy’s deeply interesting documentary-style podcast about subjects related to music is one of our favorite new discoveries. From the Goat Rodeo network.

LISTEN

Laugh-In but I didn’t know much about him. The depth that you went into with his life story was really fascinating and ultimately moving. How did this episode come about? : The first episode of the Between the Liner Notes that I listened to was “God Bless Tiny Tim.” I remember as a child watching Tiny Tim singing “Tiptoe Through the Tulips” on 22

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MATTHEW BILLY: Justin Martell, who’s Tiny Tim’s biographer, has been a friend of mine for about seven years and when I read his book I said, “let’s do a show.” He had done phenomenal research. And he had also collected these Tiny Tim audio archives. A lot of the stuff from the Johnny Carson show that I have on the episode, I don’t even think Johnny Carson’s estate has because up until the early ’70s, Carson’s team never saved the film of his shows. Justin went onto all of these Tiny


PODSTER: How do you generally find your subject matter, like the one about MTV? MATTHEW: Every episode is different. With the MTV one I remember a long time ago talking to somebody at a meetup event who told me about the work that they did with MTV back in the ‘80s and how it was such a struggle to get MTV in New York. They went into this whole story about it and that stayed in my mind for a number of years, so when I started looking for the first couple of episodes for this show, I immediately went back to that memory.

PODSTER: Your first episode was about a guy discovering some recording equipment in Germany in the aftermath of World War II that ended up being used by Bing Crosby. MATTHEW: There’s this wonderful story of this piece of Nazi technology – a reel-toreel tape recorder called the Magnetophon. The first versions of it actually existed before the Nazi’s regime, but the Nazis adopted it and used it to send Hitler’s recorded speeches to all of the radio stations in Germany. This engineer got tasked after the war to sort through all of the Nazis’ technology that they left behind, and he discovered recording equipment that was the best quality he had ever heard. His commanding officer wasn’t interested in it, so he got permission to take it home. Because of restrictions on the size of package he could ship home, he had to disassemble the Magnetophon and ship it in 18 packages to his mother in San Francisco. Once he reassembled it, he tried to interest the big movie studios in using it but they rejected it. So in the podcast I tell the story of how the Magnetophon came to the attention of Bing Crosby.

PODSTER: What kind of research did you do? MATTHEW: I read a book called I Want My MTV, and from a book I learned the story, and then I did other research to find archival audio. And then I researched the people who were involved with the rise of MTV and distilled that list down to who I thought would be the best people to tell the story. I went with two executives at MTV and one woman who worked on the label side, trying to get music videos onto MTV.

PODSTER: One of your most recent episodes is about castrati, the Italian males whose voices where made soprano via castration prior to puberty. MATTHEW: I wanted to go with something that had shock value. The fact that anyone would ever do that to anybody in the name of art and serving God is ridiculous. But it was systemic in Europe for a lot of years. The lives of the castrati are fascinating. They made the ultimate sacrifice when they were little children, and in many cases that

Tim message boards and fan clubs and found people that had literally placed a microphone in front of their television sets when Tiny Tim was on TV and recorded it themselves. He has all of Tiny Tim’s appearances, and he shared them with me and I was able to weave his research and his archives into a wonderful episode.

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MATTHEW LISTENS TO

Your Story Here “I love listening to Lizzie Peabody ask random people on the street about the intimate details of their lives, and their responses are very revealing.” Switched on Pop “Nate and Charlie’s banter about pop music is the perfect blend of music theory, lyrical analysis, historical critique and bad jokes.” The Allusionist “Helen’s wit is amazing. She is the only person who makes linguistics interesting for me.” Archive 81 “This is a brand new fiction podcast, but the story is well written and the sound design is impeccable. I think this one will rival Welcome to Night Vale.” sacrifice opened up to them a world of salons of rich aristocrats and dining with kings and queens. They achieved the type of fame you associated today with acts like Justin Bieber. PODSTER: You build the episode up to the end where you having the only recording ever made of a castrati. The listener is expecting this ethereal voice and then … it wasn’t that at all. It was

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The Kate and Vin Scelsa Podcast “I have a personal connection to this one because I used to work for Vin Scelsa, but regardless, the episodes where they aired his lost David Bowie interview and his wife’s phone call from the 1968 Democratic Convention were arresting.” creepy and amazing and sad and weird. MATTHEW: I love that moment because it’s such a tease. But that’s another amazing thing about the subject: We will never know what people in the 1700s loved about castrati because there are no recordings other than that one, which has it’s problems in that the singer was older and past his prime and the recording equipment was inferior. PODSTER: You seem like you really love the subject matter you cover. MATTHEW: It’s always nice to put something out into the world and have positive feedback come back to you. But a large part of why I love this is the research. I would never be reading about all these things at all or at least not as in depth, if I didn’t have a show. I don’t think I’ve learned as much since college.


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behind the

BJ LEIDERMAN Composer of NPR theme music bjleiderman.com

theme music theme music theme music so the idea was not to jar people awake or out of that tone if they were already listening to classical, but to wake them up gently. The very first arrangement of the Morning Edition theme started with some sort of a slow classical intro that I did on an electronic keyboard. And we had a flute, and then we did the same backwards-type shenanigans that the Beatles used to do with their tapes. We turned the tape over backwards in the tape machine and recorded a cymbal crash and a piano chord and then when you played it the correct way it just came out of nowhere. So that was our “whoosh,” a whoosh into the real musical intro, the contemporary stuff, so that people didn’t feel like they were bonked over the head.

PODSTER: So then you kind of

: The first theme you composed for NPR was for Morning Edition when it premiered back in the late 70s. 26

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What were you going for with this composition? BJ LEIDERMAN: Back in those days most of the NPR stations were coming out of classical music programs at 5 and 6 in the morning,

became the go-to guy for NPR theme music, composing theme music for, among other shows, Car Talk, Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me, and Weekend Edition. Do you tailor each piece to the show, or is there an NPR style that you adhere to? BJ: I think they kept coming back


to me because the music had legs, meaning that the way I write is I write a melody. I actually like something that is hummable in the song. There’s a lot of nice beats, chord structure, and groove going on there too, but one of the keys to the success of the music is that it is memorable and hummable. So I think NPR was comfortable with that, and figured, okay, the next show, Weekend Edition, let’s run that by him, and came up with something that was a little more flamboyant with strings. At that time, and this is a very important point in the story, they had introduced me to an arranger by the name of Jim Pugh. He was a trombone player and an A list session player in New York City when I lived there. And they put me together with him to do the second arrangement of Morning Edition, and from then on it was me and Jim Pugh. Whenever you hear something that has orchestra in it, it’s Jim’s work. I’m proud to say that for the past decade or so, Jim has been a part of Steely Dan. He’s been playing on their albums and touring with them. So I was on my way to being the defacto public radio sound. And that’s—not saying that with a big head or anything, but I only have a certain bag of tricks when it comes to chord structure and melody and by now, people are going, oh, that sounds like Leiderman, and that’s sort of a comfort zone for them. I guess that’s why they kept coming back.

PODSTER: What’s the most recent

theme you’ve written for NPR? BJ: The most recent NPR-produced show was Science Friday—that was a couple years ago. I had to sit down to figure out, okay, science, science. I liked science in high school and stuff, but I was never too good at it as far as tests go. I went to a default position of, what can I do musically that sounds like science? One thing was particles: very short staccato notes, and the other was waves. So I had my guitar player do nice long pedals in legato chords, and I put that to a groovy beat. The funny thing is, Science Friday is the first theme I’ve done for NPR that really doesn’t have a melody, per se. Its melody is in the chord structure, with me banging on that piano like a drum set. I thought that was interesting.

PODSTER: So, you were a Beatles fan as a kid and have been influenced by the Beatles. What have you learned about composing music from them? BJ: It’s interesting to have grown up with the Beatles because at first you get swept up in all the Beatlemania. I had a little band when I was in elementary school. Growing up with them you don’t know really what they’re made of. You know something is going on, but I became aware of certain things that made them special only in the last few decades. I started realizing that what’s different about the Beatles and all these other rock bands I listened to. The first thing that came to mind was that they had evolved. The jump

from the first two albums to Rubber Soul, which was basically them inventing the unplugged scene all by themselves, is incredible. And then from there, to ramp it up to Revolver, and, wait a minute, they kept their audience. Yes! Their audience came with them. The Beatles managed to capture my generation. And they managed to capture my parents’ generation too because, again, of melody.

PODSTER: Do you perform? Have you had a musical career outside of your jingle writing and composing for NPR? BJ:I’ve had a crazy musical career. I wouldn’t say it was particulary brave. I think the only brave thing I did really—I did absolutely nothing as far as music is concerned for a while there. I mean a decade went by and I really didn’t do anything. But I did ask for a leave of absence from American University during my junior year to go across the country with a band with high school friends. We went across the country from Virginia Beach to Santa Barbara and back, stopping at various cities. We had a blast, but we were basically a cover band. But we would play these particularly difficult and interesting arrangements of stuff that no other band was touching at the time. For instance, Abbey Road all the way through and a Moody Blues medley and most of Tommy by The Who, so even though we played cover tunes, we were an original act because of the things we chose to play. 27


theme)))

NEED FOR FEED

The Walking Dead

James Frazier: The Walker Stalkers A Podcast for Fans of The Walking Dead thewalkerstalkers.com walkerstalkercon.com

Can’t get enough of The Walking Dead? James Frazier has a podcast and a fan convention for you. PODSTER: Which came first—the podcast or Walker Stalker Con? James Frazier: The podcast came first. Eric Nordhoff, who used to do the podcast with me, and I went down to visit the set of The Walking Dead back in Season 3 and just literally had a dream day. We met Andrew Lincoln and Norman

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WalkerStalkerCon Zombie out and meet all your favorite The Walking Dead and Z Nation stars at the WalkerStalkerCon.

May 28 & 29, 2016 Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, Chicago, Illinois

July 9 & 10, 2016 New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center, Edison, NJ

July 30 & 31, 2016 Westin Waterfront, Boston, Massachusetts

October 1 & 2, 2016 Greater Philadelphia Expo Center at Oaks, Philadelphia, PA

October 28, 29, & 30, 2016 Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, Georgia

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NEED FOR FEED

Reedus and Melissa McBride and got to watch them film. This is when you could sit 10 yards away and watch them film before they became super secretive and blocked off everything. We had this amazing day and came home and decided to start our own podcast. About seven episodes in we were able to get Greg Nicotero, the executive producer and director of The Walking Dead, to come on the podcast, and we had such a good experience with him that he went back and told the rest of the cast and we ended up doing 27 straight episodes with a cast member from the show. Then our podcast went to number one on iTunes, and we started to develop a really good loyal following. So we thought maybe we should go back to Senoia, where they film The Walking Dead in Georgia, and do a fan meetup. We had 80 people at the fan meetup for the for the Season 3 finale, then for the Season 4 premiere we had 600 people, and then for our next event in Atlanta we were able to get Norman Reedus and Andrew Lincoln to come and as soon as that happened it went to 10,500 people attending over the weekend. PODSTER: Did you decide then to make it Walker Stalker Con? James: Yeah, everybody started to hear about it. Rolling Stone did an article on it. USA Today. Everybody started reading about it and started asking if we could bring it to their city, and so we gave it a try in Chicago even though none of us had any experience running a convention. We relied on a lot of people who were already in the business to give us direction.

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But we took it to Chicago and it did really well, and then we went to Boston and it continued to grow to what it is now. I think we’ll do 13 events this year. We added another event called Heroes and Villains, which is based on superheroes in television and film—all current stuff. We’ve developed into Fanfest.com, with Fanfest doing original programming and podcasting networks. It’s still run by about the same 25 people who volunteered for the first Walker Stalker Con, still with a “for the fans, by the fans” mentality. PODSTER: To what do you attribute the popularity of these zombie-themed shows like The Walking Dead and Z Nation? James: I think the interest in zombies is always the idea of what would you do in the Zombie Apocalypse or what would you do if the world was falling apart. But what drives these shows really is the characters and identifying with the characters. For The Walking Dead, people see themselves in all these different characters because it’s such a diverse cast. The Walking Dead is more about the people than the walkers. PODSTER: Who do you think got killed at the end of Season 6? James: Steven Yeun is the nicest guy in the world and I wish nothing more than great success for him, but I believe it is Glenn that gets killed. I just think they’re going to stick to the comic books on this. But I also think if they’re going to make Negan be impactful and scarier than the Governor, they’re going to have to kill a secondary character and I have no clue who that might be.


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In the first Shelf Media Podcast, publisher Margaret Brown talks to author Matt Bell about his three books and about writing, teaching the craft of writing, and his forthcoming novel. She also talks to book reviewers David Rice and Michele Filgate about Bell’s most recent novel, In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods.

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OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2015


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THE PODSTER FIVE THE STUFF OF LIFE howstuffworks.com

hat is the meaning of life?” is a question that feels so overasked, so impossible to answer, so cryptic in its simplicity, that we’ve come to make fun of others asking it, instead of asking it ourselves. Perhaps we dismiss the question because we know we’ll never truly be able to answer it. Or perhaps the words have entered the social canon because despite the fun we poke at them, they still grip, intrigue and terrify us. We may not like to mouth the specific question, but through religion and politics and science and art, we all still seem to be trying to answer it. Part philosophy, part science, part psychology, part social commentary, The Stuff of Life examines storytelling as one of the most rich and telling ways we try to understand the nature and meaning of life. But rather than engaging in lofty, inaccessible philosophy, the show explores folklore, canonical texts, social customs and the like. Host Julie Douglas invites all kinds of experts to discuss the stories we tell, why we tell them, and what they can tell us in turn about the nature of being human. From death to fear to language to illness to music and beyond, The Stuff of Life probes the questions we all ponder about the things we love, crave and fear. To delve into the podcast for the first time, begin with an episode like “The First Songs,” which takes a scientific yet emotive approach to the origin of music, examining nature and music as two intrinsically linked elements. —Gemma King

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E

4

ven the most playful and light-hearted narratives about everyday experience can tell us a lot about what it means to experience fulfillment, discrimination, happiness and anger in the contemporary world. New to the podcast scene, Two Dope Queens became an instant phenomenon when it launched in March. Though only up to its sixth episode, the podcast has drawn a large audience for its lighthearted yet intelligent comedy. Hosts Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams share a chemistry that makes it just as interesting to listen to them talk about Billy Joel as about 21st-century race relations. In fact, it is these women’s ability to shift between the inconsequential and the political without skipping a beat that makes Two Dope Queens special. What it means to be an African American woman in today’s America (specifically New York City) is an underlying thread in each episode, and the podcast never shies away from broaching important political material. Yet despite the weight of such a theme, Robinson and Williams have a knack for posing incisive questions while keeping an impeccable comedic rhythm. Although the last few years have seen a promising change in the comedy world, comedy has historically been dominated by white men. Shows like Two Dope Queens show us how much we’ve being missing out on by listening to such a narrow collection of voices. The discourse Robinson and Williams have to offer about the world doesn’t just make us think, it makes us laugh. And that is powerful —Gemma King

THE PODSTER FIVE

TWO DOPE QUEENS wnyc.org/shows/dopequeens


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THE PODSTER FIVE

GENERATION WHY thegenerationwhypodcast.com

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ar from a silly collection of ghost tales or a place for psychopaths to gather, the Generation Why podcast is made for the rational skeptics that most of us are. Each episode tackles a real-life tale that has been shrouded in mystery for one reason or another. Some stories appear to have supernatural elements that cannot be easily explained. Others are murder mysteries in which a clear culprit is challenging, if not impossible, to find. Still others are straightforward cases of horror that have taken place in familiar, banal situations that hit a little too close to home. Among its many strengths is Generation Why’s relaxed pace and contemplative feel. Each episode appears to have been recorded at night, as hosts Justin and Aaron ask one another casually, “How you doing this evening?” before launching into discussion. And indeed the podcast does have a slightly eerie, dark, late-night feel, heightened by the creepy introductory music. In keeping with the off-the-clock atmosphere, the hosts allow themselves as much time as they need to mull over every detail of the mystery of the week. Each host exchanges what they have learned about the case from their own research, the elements they find the most confusing or problematic, and how they have each interpreted the facts. Neither host is afraid to admit their own personal biases or admit they simply don’t know what they think. The result is a long, detailed back-and-forth that leaves no stone unturned. —Gemma King


SIDESHOW NETWORK Your favorite podcasts on demand and on stage from the Hollywood Improv

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THE PODSTER FIVE THE HISTORY CHICKS thehistorychicks.com

t’s no secret that history has focused in large part on men. Of course, much of this is due to historic patriarchal structures that have placed men in far more positions of authority than women throughout the ages. The presidents, military leaders, scholars, soldiers, moguls and political figures of the past have mostly been male, largely because the system allowed only men to hold such posts. Enter The History Chicks, a lighthearted yet important podcast about female figures throughout history. Hosts Beckett Graham and Susan Vollenweider are not only passionate about telling the stories of historic women, they are also insistent on doing so in fun and engaging ways. The podcast’s tagline “Any resemblance to a boring history class is purely coincidental!” sets the tone for a refreshing approach to history. Of course, we’ve all heard of queens like Elizabeth I and Marie Antoinette, and none of us would struggle to describe who Rosa Parks or Cleopatra were. Yet how many of us can explain what Lydia Pinkham did for redefining representations of women in the media, how Clara Bow contributed to the history of cinema, or the mark Sophie Blanchard left on aeronautics? Importantly, The History Chicks do not seek to glorify all women or to shy away from some women’s notoriety, covering murderers like Lizzie Borden alongside children’s authors like Laura Ingalls Wilder. But perhaps the podcast’s greatest strength is that it doesn’t just feel like coverage of historic ladies, but coverage of history in general. —Gemma King

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WWW.UNDISCLOSED-PODCAST.COM

The Undisclosed Podcast is a listening experience that reframes, enhances, or otherwise shifts everything you’ve come to know about the State of Maryland’s case against Adnan Syed, especially as you’ve come to know it through listening to Serial.

Season 1

(available now) The State vs. Adnan Syed

Season 2

Coming in 2016

HOSTED BY

RABIA CHAUDRY, COLIN MILLER, AND SUSAN SIMPSON. 37


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THE PODSTER FIVE RADIOLAB radiolab.org

s a general rule, the most popular podcasts tend to focus on society and culture. From history to comedy to philosophy to cinema, it is often shows which cover cultural phenomena and everyday experience that seem to draw the largest crowds. Of course, this is not to suggest that podcasts about science, mathematics and economics cannot be fascinating and beloved. But the verbal nature of the podcast is suited to conversation in ways that particularly suit artistic, social and cultural topics. In this context, Radiolab is a bit of an outlier. Technically a science podcast, Radiolab has covered such hardcore scientific material as the origin of cells, the science of gravity, the ins and outs of certain diseases and the history of the periodic table. Yet with a rotating cast of funny and engaging presenters, this podcast is not only able to teach us the science behind such topics, it is also able to laugh at the quirkiness of the world, the ferocity of nature and the bizarreness of life. Occasionally, the show also dips into strange cultural phenomena, such as in the recent K-Poparazzi episode about the hilarious yet terrifying world of Korean pop music. Radiolab has a community feel and a range of voices that weigh in on the material in intelligent and amusing ways. The result is a podcast which feels like a humanist’s science show —Gemma King lesmuseesdeparis.com

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audiovisuals audiovisuals audiovisuals SMITHSONIAN AMERICAN ART MUSEUM PODCAST “PHOTOGRAPHY AT AMERICAN ART MUSEUM”

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(PREVIOUS SPREAD) William Wegman, Untitled (Gallop), 1988, four gelatin silver prints, © 1988, William Wegman. William Christenberry, Church, Sprott, Alabama,1971, printed 1981, dye transfer print, © 1971, William Christenberry.

(THIS SPREAD) William Christenberry, Palmist Building—Havana, Alabama, 1980, printed 1981, chromogenic print, © 1980, William Christenberry. William Christenberry, Green Warehouse—Newbern, Alabama, 1978, printed 1981, chromogenic print, © 1978, William Christenberry.

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the case the case the case THE DEBBIE DILEMMA by Colin Miller Colin Miller is Associate Dean and Professor, University of South Carolina School of Law; co-host, Undisclosed Podcast; and blog editor, EvidenceProf Blog.

In Podster’s The Case, Colin picks up where Serial Podcast left off.

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I

n both of Adnan Syed’s trials back in 1999 and 2000, the prosecution claimed that Adnan called Jay Wilds at 2:36 P.M. from a payphone at a Best Buy that was also the location of Hae Min Lee’s death and about a mile away from Woodlawn High School. The jurors at both trials did not hear what Judge Martin Welch heard earlier this year: Asia McClain remembers seeing Adnan at the library next to Woodlawn High School until 2:40 P.M. on the day in question, January 13, 1999. At Adnan’s first trial, however, the jury did hear vital testimony that was not repeated at the second trial. Debbie Warren was a fellow Woodlawn student and a good friend to both Hae and Adnan. In fact, she was partially responsible for their relationship. On

March 26, 1999, Debbie told Detectives Ritz and MacGillivary that she was positive that she saw Adnan at the guidance counselor’s office at about 2:45 P.M. on January 13. According to Debbie, Adnan had his “track stuff” with him, and they talked about Adnan “going to practice.” Upon prodding, Debbie did eventually acknowledge that this conversation could have taken place the day before or the day after January 13, but Woodlawn did not have track practice on January 12 or 14. Indeed, there are few days other than the 13th when this conversation could have taken place. Between the start of school on January 4 and January 19, the only days that Adnan attended track practice were January 7, 11, and 13. At Adnan’s first trial, Debbie testified as a State’s witness on December 13, 1999, after the State had set forth its 2:36 timeline in its opening statement. Defense counsel Cristina Gutierrez then engaged in a brief cross-examination of Debbie and was about to sit down before proclaiming that she “did have one other question.” Gutierrez asked Debbie whether


she recalled telling the detectives that she saw Adnan at the guidance counselor’s office about 2:45 P.M. on January 13 before he went to track practice. Debbie answered in the affirmative, and this response makes it difficult to see how the jury could have found Adnan guilty if his first trial ended in a verdict. After all, a State’s witness was confirming that she had seen Adnan, still at Woodlawn, nine minutes after he had supposedly murdered Hae and called Jay from the mile-away Best Buy. That first trial, however, did not end in a verdict. It ended in a mistrial after a juror overheard the judge call Gutierrez a liar. Thereafter, at Adnan’s second trial, the State again advanced the 2:36 timeline in its opening statement. On February 17, 2000, Debbie again testified as a State’s witness, and Gutierrez again cross-examined her. With a recollection of what Debbie had said just two months ago, Gutierrez didn’t even really ask her a question about her police statement. Instead, Gutierrez “asked,” “And you told them that you saw Adnan on that day, referring to the 13th, before he went to practice?” This time, though, the result was drastically different: “I don’t remember.” Gutierrez did not follow up on this answer by trying to refresh Debbie’s recollection or introducing a transcript of

Debbie’s police statement or testimony from the first trial, all of which were viable options under the rules of evidence. It’s not clear why Gutierrez failed to take these logical steps, and it’s equally unclear why Debbie changed her tune. Did she forget making the police statement in the two months between trials? Did Debbie think Adnan was guilty and realize the gravity of her testimony after the first trial? Did someone pressure Debbie into “forgetting” her statement? We may never know. We also may never know whether Debbie in fact saw Adnan on January 13. As noted, unless Debbie was combining events from different days, the only candidates for her track practice conversation with Adnan were January 7, 11, and 13. So, is there a specific reason to believe that this conversation could have taken place on the 13th? Yes and no. At trial, Gutierrez called Adnan’s guidance counselor, Bettye Stuckey, and showed her a recommendation letter for Adnan that was signed and dated “01/13/99.” Upon questioning, Stuckey indicated that she signs her recommendation letters on the day she gives them to students. Therefore, the easy conclusion would be that Adnan picked up his letter at about 2:45 P.M. on January 13, which is when Debbie saw him at the

LISTEN

guidance counselor’s office. As with everything in this case, though, nothing is easy. According to Gutierrez’s notes, Adnan picked up this recommendation letter at 1:13 P.M., which also explains why Adnan was late to his Period 4 class that started at 12:55 P.M. But how did Adnan or Gutierrez know that Adnan picked up the letter at exactly 1:13 P.M.? There is no timestamp on it and no obvious reason that Adnan would remember picking up the letter at exactly 1:13 P.M. One possibility is that Adnan or Gutierrez saw the date on the letter – “01/13/99” – and misinterpreted these numbers to conclude that Adnan picked up the letter at 1:13 P.M. It’s possible that Debbie is remembering the wrong day, or the wrong time. It’s also possible that she holds the key to proving Adnan’s innocence. 47


epi sode

17 GRAVY southernfoodways.org/gravy LISTEN 48

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Host: Tina Antolini Producer: Philip Graitcer About: “Gravy shares stories of the changing American South through the foods we eat. Gravy showcases a South that is constantly evolving, accommodating new immigrants, adopting new traditions, and lovingly maintaining old ones. It uses food as a means to explore all of that, to dig into lesser-known corners of the region, complicate stereotypes, document new dynamics, and give voice to the unsung folk who grow, cook, and serve our daily meals. At Gravy, what we eat is a window into who we are. Through that window, we glimpse how race, class, gender, faith, sexuality and environment play out in the region and across the nation.” Part of: Southern Foodways Alliance Episode 17: A Charleston Feast for Reconciliation Description: “Charleston, South Carolina has become the center of discussions about race and violence in America these past few weeks. The massacre of nine African American parishioners at a historic black church there has prompted a national discussion and collective

soul-searching: how did this happen in 2015? What work still needs to be done to prevent this sort of racial hatred and terrorism? But Charleston is also home to a historical bright spot, a moment from 150 years ago that is still inspiring South Carolinians today. In 1865, at the end of the Civil War, an unusual dinner party was held in Charleston that brought white and black residents together. In this episode of Gravy, producer Philip Graitcer brings us the story of that dinner, and how it’s still resonating today.” That moment when: Tina Antolini reveals that Reverend Clementa C. Pinckney, a victim of the 2015 Charleston church massacre, had attended the Nat Fuller Reconciliation Feast just weeks before his death. Sound bite: “Tonight, there’s a particular taste, a particular pleasure, and that’s the taste of liberty.” Listen because: Gravy just won its second James Beard Foundation Award for Best Podcast.


EA EAR RBBU UD D PODSTER’S AARON WATSON RECOMMENDS:

PROFESSOR BUZZKILL professorbuzzkill.com Any podcast listener worth his or her salt has binged on Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History. The 10- to 15-hour engrossing, wellresearched history lessons make us wish that he had been teaching our history classes back when we were in school. But because many of us weren’t paying attention in school, misconceptions and misunderstandings about how history actually transpired are commonplace. Fortunately, Professor Buzzkill is on the case. Joseph Coohill, the Duquesne University history professor, sets out every episode to destroy a commonly held myth about important historical figures. From Hitler creating the Volkswagen to the genesis of Santa Claus, no story is safe from Buzzkill’s discerning perspective. He is also happy to bring on expert colleagues to join him on the show. Episodes vary between half hour discussions and quick mini-episodes. The mini-episodes matter-of-factly punch historical myths right in the mouth. The longer discussions with guests feel less like a lecture and more like you’re sitting in on a lunch between history buffs trading insight and anecdotes. Note: Obnoxiously flaunting your knowledge by correcting people at lunches and cocktail parties is generally not appreciated so it’s best to keep what you’ve learned to yourself. Besides, that’s why you’re listening to all theses podcasts—not because you’re out to impress others but because you’re a devout life-long learner. Aaron Watson is the host of the Going Deep with Aaron Watson podcast, a forum for meaningful, deep conversations about the passions, fears and problems of people from all walks of life. Guests talk about entrepreneurship, sports, finance, comedy, and lifestyle design. goingdeepwithaaron.com 50

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@THR (THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER) #SNL: Jay Pharoah Shares Thoughts on ‘Lemonade’ as Jay Z, 50 Cent, Will Smith http://thr.cm/qmCej5

@EW (ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY) Watch Kate McKinnon compare Donald Trump to Vladimir Putin on #SNL’s Weekend Update: Watch Kate McKinnon compare Donald Trump to Vladimir Putin on #SNL’s Weekend Update: http://ew.com/ article/2016/05/15/snl-donald-trumpputin-comparison …

@PEOPLE (PEOPLE MAGAZINE) Feud alert! Drake beefs with @Lesdoggg Jones, Pete Davidson and even Lorne Michaels on #SNL http://peoplem.ag/ hX6GOcE

@BILLBOARD (BILLBOARD) #SNL “Dead Bopz” Sketch: Watch Tupac, Roy Orbison & more sing today’s hits as holograms http://blbrd.cm/8ORVK7

#SNL NOT READY FOR PRIMETIME PODCAST 52

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@HULU (HULU) Church Lady (@danacarvey) made a surprise appearance on #SNL. Well, isn’t that special? Yes. http://hulu. tv/23zpr9F


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Find your next favorite podcast in new Podster magazine. In this issue: Phoebe Judge, David Brancaccio, Jody Avirgan, Matthew Billy, and mor...

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