Each month, Podcast Review’s staff offers recommendations on the best new podcasts to listen to. Here are our favorites for October:
On McCartney: A Life in Lyrics, poet Paul Muldoon sits down with Paul McCartney himself for deep dives into some of his most famous songs. In the series’ first episode, McCartney reveals the criss-crossing narratives that helped him write and arrange “Eleanor Rigby,” tracing childhood memories to scenes of he and John walking around as young Beatles. Of particular interest is the arrangement’s connection to the score from Psycho’s famous shower scene. It’s all made worthwhile by McCartney’s typically warm and open style.
Since the Hollywood writers and actors’ strikes, the inner workings of Tinsel Town have come under greater scrutiny. From Apple Podcasts, Magnificent Jerk explores how movies get made and who gets to be in them with a compelling, personal twist. After her grandmother’s death, host Maya Lin Sugarman finds a box of lost screenplays written by her uncle Galen. One of these forgotten scripts was even made into a movie starring Robe Lowe and Ice-T. But why had this never been mentioned? The unraveling story of her uncle’s past takes Sugarman from a gang underworld to the set of a ‘90s action movie in an attempt to answer one question: Was the movie really based on Galen’s life? Everyone goes to Hollywood with a dream. Magnificent Jerk proves that most never make it without compromise.
Heavyweight, now eight seasons and more than 50 episodes in, returns this week, still in peak form. To open the season, Jonathan Goldstein shares the story of his childhood best friend, Lenny, with whom he reconnects when he learns that Lenny is dying of cancer. Goldstein uses audio from the home radio tapes he and Lenny made during their childhood, and tries to understand where he and Lenny’s childhoods diverged. As always, Goldstein shares the intimate conversations between them in full.
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