9 Best Podcasts for Music Lovers
The thing about real music lovers is that they don’t just like to listen to music--they like to talk about music, and they like to listen to other people talk about music. Essentially, music is everything, and there is no exhausting this subject. Thankfully, an increasing number of podcast shows are being recorded and released for music lovers, with podcasts ranging from discussions on classic and contemporary music, to dissections of popular music samples and the origin of these riffs, to explanations of how songs were made my the musicians themselves.
We’ve compiled a list of all the best music podcasts out there so you don’t have to! So read on, listen on, and let us know on our social media channels if we helped you find a new favorite!
1. Song Exploder
This extremely popular podcast is produced and edited by host and creator Hrishikesh Hirway, who asks different musicians in each episode to explain what went into the creation of their songs. It gives the listener a real look at the creative process that goes into making a song. We especially love how tightly edited and focused it is! The list of guests on this show is as impressive as it is extensive, including such stars as U2, Jack Johnson, Lorde, The Killers, and Solange.
2. Riffs on Riffs
This new-to-the-scene podcast, produced by Evergreen Podcasts, studies sampling in popular music. Hosts, Joe Watson and Toby Brazwell, connect the musical dots between legendary tracks and the often not-so-well-known songs from which they sampled. You’ll hear behind-the-scenes stories of musicians and their inspiration for some of your favorite songs, and you might find yourself saying, “I can’t believe that’s where this song came from!” Learn how these epic songs drew from music of the past and paid it forward — enriching the musical landscape for future generations.
Disgraceland is truly unique in that it is a true crime podcast that tells the true stories of musicians getting away with murder (quite literally) and behaving in other less-than-stellar ways. Each 30 minute episode chronicles the almost unbelievable criminal acts of an infamous musician. As their website explains, “Disgraceland explores these stories and more and attempts to reckon the heinous acts committed by these musicians with our love for the amazing music they create, which is particularly relevant in the here and now.” Whether you’re a true crime fan or a music fan, you won’t want to miss out on this podcast.
4. Questlove Supreme
This weekly podcast is available only on Pandora, but that hasn’t stopped it from reaching a large audience. It is hosted by Questlove, The Roots drummer, NYU professor, and strategic ambassador and advisor at Pandora. In each episode, he “digs deep into the stories behind the names you know, and the names you might not.” It has been described as a “music junkie’s dream,” and it featured a whole host of well-known musical guests. If you’re not a big Pandora user, this podcast might just change that for you.
5. All Songs Considered
Produced by NPR, this podcast is hosted by Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton, two “friendly music buddies” who share the week’s best new music discoveries, including new songs, conversations with emerging artists, and much more. You won’t miss a beat in the music world by tuning into this podcast on your daily commute (or wherever you like to listen to your podcasts). You might just get introduced to your new favorite song, “discover” an amazing new artist, or, at the very least, listen to a song that turns your day around.
6. Rolling Stone Music Now
The writers and editors of Rolling Stone take the listener inside the biggest stories in music in this fun and interesting podcast. It features fascinating commentary on yesterday’s and today’s biggest names in music, interviews with big stars, and insight into the biggest musical news from the past week. Music lovers of all types will find something to love in this podcast.
7. Vinyl Me, Please
Vinyl Me, Please is the new and very popular record-of-the-month club, and, of course, it has its own podcast! It is hosted by co-founder of the company, Tyler Barstow, who digs into the best stories, albums, and artists in music, enlisting various artists and people in the music world to help him along the way. You’re sure to find a new artist to listen to, learn something new about an artist you already loved, or find something to laugh about.
8. Switched on Pop
This podcast breaks down pop hits to figure out what makes it a hit and what is its place in culture Hosted by musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding, Switched on Pop will make you sing, laugh, dance, and think. And it doesn’t just focus on modern-day pop songs; it explores popular songs from every decade, so there’s truly something for every kind of pop fan.
9. I've Heard That Song Before
This podcast celebrates the Great American Songbook, featuring a different jazz standard each week. Hosts (jazz musicians and artists) choose four different artist renditions of a selected song and dig in deep to explore the lyrics, music, emotion, history, and more. This podcast is perfect for music-junkies and novices alike.