As DC Refined’s photojournalist, I spend a lot of time on the road - or, more accurately, looking for parking. I rely on podcasts to stay sane and up-to-date on what’s happening in the DMV. So you can trust me when I say go ahead and subscribe to these (non-political) gems from D.C.
If you’ve ever wondered why you’re being escorted off the orange line for the umpteenth time, you should listen to Metropocalypse. This weekly podcast from WAMU’s transportation reporter, Martin Di Caro, goes into the nitty-gritty details of how and why metro went wrong over the span of decades, while never losing sight of the present.
It’s also a good podcast to listen to before heading to happy hour with friends - after all, nothing unites Washingtonians like complaining about Metro.
D.C. has a thriving music scene and hosts Justin Trawick and Sean Russell are here to guide you through it. The Circus Life not only offers performances from local musicians across genres, Trawick and Russell also have often hilarious and enlightening conversations with locals on topics ranging from penguins to Bruce Springsteen.
3. Hey Frase
You can't help but want to be Sarah Fraser's friend when you listen to "Hey Frase." Although she sometimes touches on national topics, Frase often focuses on the coolest things about D.C. - like up-and-coming local rapper Yasmin Radbod. Fraser is fun, funny and NSFW - so you may want to listen to it when you're alone.
4. The Kojo Nnamdi Show
Okay, I lied - Kojo Nnamdi does touch on local politics fairly often. However, he's a warm and engaging presence on the radio, making even hour-long discussion of the fate of the D.C. public school lunch program fly by faster than you can imagine. Nnamdi and his guests also talk about The District's culture, touching on subjects ranging from the art of the daiquiri to gentrification around Anacostia.
5. The Ladycast
The Ladycast typically comes out every two weeks, but D.C.-based Alex Laughlin's podcast is focused on empowering women. Laughlin's knack for finding interesting interview subjects often leaves me with something to think about for days after listening to it . A notable episode focuses on Laughlin's own battle with mental illness, in part because it ties back to D.C. and it's often hyper-ambitious culture.