Is Taskmaster coming to Channel 4? I wish they would tell us.

Trying to be ironic in print doesn’t always come across, so in case it wasn’t obvious, yes I was being ironic. With the show launching this week, you might be pleased to hear that they’ve launched a podcast accompanying the new series. Ed Gamble and a special guest will dissect each episode, released directly after each episode.

Before we tell you about new podcasts, a quick update about Americast, the US election podcast we featured last week. With just over two weeks until the election, the podcast hosted by the BBC’s Emily Maitlis, Jon Sopel and Anthony Zurcher is making the leap to television. Just like Newscast, it will remain podcast-first but have a visual outing on the BBC News Channel, airing each weekend. 

Also an update on another podcast we featured recently: Talking Derry Girls, where the hosts use the sitcom as a gateway to share their own experiences of growing up in Derry. In their most recent episode they had their first ever guest: the creator and writer of Derry Girls, Lisa McGee: “I love this podcast so much. It’s the only podcast that isn’t about people getting murdered that I listen to nowadays,” she said.

HERE’S SOME OTHER GUESTS ON PODCASTS THIS WEEK:

  • Guardian restaurant critic Grace Dent is the latest guest on Table Manners with Jessie Ware.
  • Stephen Fry talks to Dan Murray-Serter about how education can have an impact on our confidence, his mental health and why we are drawn to wickedness in the podcast Working In.
  • Jack McEwan, the lead singer and guitarist of the band Psychedelic Porn Crumpets talked about his love of fantasy football in Fantasy Football Hangover.

If you have listened to an interesting guest on a podcast recently, let us know by filling in this form.

Here are our podcast picks for the week ahead

It’s A Continent In this delightful and engaging podcast, brim with facts, hosts Chinny and Astrid challenge the common misconception that Africa is a country (yep, still) by profiling a different country within Africa each episode. So far in their second series they have looked at the history, politics and culture of South Sudan, Western Sahara and most recently, Lesotho. Research and facts are mixed in with humour and commentary (I particularly love the flag segment) and in the show notes there’s links to resources where you do your own further research. This podcast is another timely reminder of how little we know about the world out there.

Eddie Hearn: No Passion, No Point – Imagine training for a sporting event for four years, only to find out that in the year the competition was due to take place that it has been delayed by another 12 months. How do you keep going, mentally and physically? In the most recent episode of this enjoyable conversational series by BBC Radio 5 Live, the sports promoter Eddie Hearn spoke to Olympic sprinter Dina Asher-Smith about her unexpected year. What she said was rather surprising – that the delay has given them the opportunity to focus and work towards an increasingly busy calendar of competitions, the downside being that it gives your rivals the same opportunity. “It’s very easy for everybody to say ‘I was in the shape of my life and then it got postponed!’, she jokes. “I’ve seen so many tweets saying ‘dammit, I was going to break the record this year!’ I’m like ‘sure, sure.’”

Spotify Podcast of the Week: Sorted with the DyersDanny and Dani Dyer have finally decided to get amongst the podcast world, and have partnered with Spotify for their latest Original launch, Sorted with the Dyers. Every Wednesday, exclusively on Spotify, the dad and daughter duo will take in listener dilemmas and use some Dyer family wisdom to get them sorted. During this debut episode, Danny reveals how he feels about becoming a Grandad and we hear about what the perfect snack in bed is. If you want Dani and Danny to sort you out, email sorted@dyerspodcast.com

Straight Up – Music journalism has had a tough 2020, with the closure of Q Magazine and a practically non-existent festival and gig scene, so this podcast might be of interest for those looking for a fix or wanting something to support in the months ahead. GQ journalist Kathleen Johnston and Telegraph journalist Eleanor Halls speak to some notable names in the industry, including much sought after video director Henry Scholfield (who has directed Dua Lipa, Stormzy and Billie Eilish) to BBC Radio 1 and 1 Xtra DJ Tiffany Calver. These chats strike a good tone, never being too technical and pretentious that it only appeals to music aficionados. 

Money Clinic with Claer BarrettWe are all understandably looking at our finances at such an uncertain time, so this podcast from the Financial Times might come in use. Each week Claer Barrett, the paper’s consumer editor, guides you through a common money problem, without any of the complicated financial jargon the other places love to use. In the last two episodes there’s advice on what you should think about before you invest (an activity apparently booming during the pandemic) as well as guidance for those who have just graduated into a difficult jobs market. A quick preview: work a budget, start on long term saving goals if you can and focus on what you can do at a time when there’s a lot that you can’t. This quote stood out to me: “attitude determines altitude.”

If you want your podcast featured, or you have a great recommendation, just fill in this simple form.

It’s been a busy week in podcasting so a couple of more things to let you know about before we go. Spotify have announced that you can now add music into your podcasts, to help break up the chat. For some analysis on it, read this helpful post by the BPA’s Matt Deegan.

A podcast series coming out in the next few weeks that might interest too: Transmissions: The Definitive Story of Joy Division & New Order. The series will look at how the group influenced a generation. You can listen to a two minute preview of the series. We’ll let you know when it is out.

Finally, there’s been a lot of *the news* of late, so two here’s podcasts that might help keep you grounded. Get Sleepy features meditations and stories to help you nod off if you can’t switch off. Radio Headspace, presented by Brit Andy Puddicombe, provides helpful bits of mental wisdom every weekday. 

The toughest bit is always not letting other people know how you’re feeling, rather than ever telling them, so it’s always worth sending that message.

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