Podcast

Radiotopia Presents: S***hole Country

Afia Kaakyire (LOL not her real name, her parents would kill her) has a decision to make. And by God, her family is going to help her figure this s*** out. Join her in this eight-part podcast series as she forages for guidance in their shared histories — true tales dipped in entrepreneurial dreams, green card anxieties, complicated love and liberal portions of the world’s best jollof — during a long-awaited trip to Ghana. S***hole Country is written, narrated, sound designed by Afia Kaakyire, ...more

Episodes

  • S***hole Country BONUS: AfroQueer's Ghana 21

    Dec 22 2021

    Radiotopia Presents and S***hole Country is proud to present a bonus episode from AfroQueer. 2021 has been a really rough year for Ghana’s LGBTQI people. Police raided and shut down a queer community center in Accra; 21 people attending a paralegal workshop in the city of Ho were arrested and locked up for 21 days before the case was dropped; and eight MPs have come up with draft legislation that, if adopted, makes it a crime just to be queer or a queer ally. But the LGBT community are fighting ...more

  • S***hole Country: Developing

    Dec 01 2021

    Afia makes up her mind. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: 1 Corinthians 10:23

    Nov 24 2021

    Afia tells the truth. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: The Devil Is A Liar

    Nov 17 2021

    Afia is due to return to San Francisco in a few days. She wants to pay a visit to an old friend before she leaves. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: The Quiet Part

    Nov 10 2021

    Afia celebrates Christmas with the aid of a curious present: meditation. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: LVMH

    Nov 03 2021

    With their “Are You The One?” marathon complete, Afia and her parents must now turn to Accra for entertainment. What will they find? S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: A Typical Ghanaian Woman

    Oct 27 2021

    Afia’s always had a complicated relationship with her mom Agnes. But if she’s going to get some much-needed clarity, she’ll have to ask Agnes some uncomfortable questions. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiot...more

  • S***hole Country: Akwaaba

    Oct 20 2021

    December 2017. Afia lands in Accra, her first trip to the continent in years. A big surprise awaits her. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • S***hole Country: Quote Unquote

    Oct 13 2021

    January 2018. “Afia,” a 30-year-old Ghanaian-American who eats the food but doesn’t speak the language, just spent the holidays in Accra. She flies home to San Francisco, straight into a media s***storm. S***hole Country is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about S***hole Country and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across ...more

  • Radiotopia Presents: S***hole Country

    Oct 06 2021

    Coming up next on Radiotopia Presents: S***hole Country. Afia Kaakyire has a decision to make. And by God, her family is going to help her figure this s*** out. Join her in this eight-part podcast series as she forages for her family’s guidance in their shared histories during a long-awaited trip to Ghana — true tales dipped in green card anxieties, complicated love, an “Are You the One?” marathon, and liberal portions of the world’s best jollof. S***hole Country is written, narrated, sound d...more

  • Behind the Series: A Frontman Emerges

    Sep 01 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Radiotopia Presents from Radiotopia. This week, we talk with someone who's had a lot to do with the sound of Radiotopia Presents, Ian Coss. Ian has played a key role in creating some of our favorite series, starting with the very first show featured on Radiotopia Presents (then called Showcase): Ways of Hearing (2017), and including our most recent series, Blind Guy Travels, which he produced and s...more

  • Blind Guy Travels BONUS - Matthew Shifrin on Say My Meme

    Aug 18 2021

    Blind Guy Travel’s Matthew Shifrin hasn't engaged much with the visual culture of memes. Cue the hosts of Say My Meme, Will Butler from Be My Eyes and Caroline Desrosiers from Scribely. Say My Meme is a podcast that literally describes the world's most #relevant memes, bringing the blind and sighted people together through laughter and the power of visual description. In their neverending crusade to bring memes to to the people who have the least access, Will and Caroline attempted to turn Matth...more

  • Blind Guy Travels: Crossing the Street

    Aug 11 2021

    Independence. It’s a word that’s used in the blind community often, but that means different things to different people. What does independence mean for Matthew? On the heels of his Senior Recital and college graduation, Matthew ruminates on what might be next for him. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access trans...more

  • Blind Guy Travels: The Sound of Sound

    Jul 28 2021

    Some teachers hang you upside-down to help you sing better. Others sit on you. In the lead-up to his senior recital, Matthew reflects on becoming an accomplished blind musician, through conversations with four of his music mentors who have helped along the way. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts a...more

  • Blind Guy Travels: The Blind Date

    Jul 14 2021

    Most dating apps rely heavily on user photos and other visual cues, so Matthew gathers a team of friends to help him craft the perfect dating profile and vet potential romantic interests. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia...more

  • Blind Guy Travels: Listening to the Movies

    Jun 30 2021

    Why watch a movie if you can’t see the screen? Matthew and his friend Ben take in a Marx Brothers film and showcase the power of a good description. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • Blind Guy Travels: Brick By Brick

    Jun 15 2021

    On his 13th birthday, Matthew’s friend Lilya brings a gift that will change his life, and ultimately touch Lego-loving blind kids all over the world. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • Blind Guy Travels: Noodle Arms No More

    Jun 02 2021

    How can a blind person learn gestures when he's never seen them? As Matthew prepares for a TEDx Talk, he makes his first foray into learning body language. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • Blind Guy Travels: Meet Your Guide

    Jun 02 2021

    Matthew explains the mysterious clicking noise you’ll hear a lot of in Blind Guy Travels. Blind Guy Travels is a production of Radiotopia from PRX and part of Radiotopia Presents, a podcast feed debuting limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. Learn more about Blind Guy Travels and access transcripts at radiotopiapresents.fm and discover more shows from across the Radiotopia network at radiotopia.fm.

  • Behind the Series: Introducing Radiotopia Presents

    May 26 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Showcase from Radiotopia. This week, we conclude Behind the Series with a big update. Showcase is back! And we’re back as...Radiotopia Presents, your destination for limited-run, artist-owned series from new and original voices. To help celebrate, we talk with Radiotopia’s Julie Shapiro and Audrey Mardavich about what listeners can expect from Radiotopia Presents, what they look for in limited-run p...more

  • Behind the Series: The Stoop

    May 19 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Showcase from Radiotopia. This week, we revisit The Stoop. A warm, funny, and intimate podcast that tells stories about the black diaspora, The Stoop has had an interesting run with Radiotopia. After landing as a top ten finalist in Radiotopia’s 2016 Podquest search, The Stoop launched a year later as an independent podcast, released a four-episode run on Showcase in 2018, and returned three years ...more

  • Behind the Series: The Great God of Depression

    May 12 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Showcase from Radiotopia. This week, we revisit The Great God of Depression. Initially released in 2018, this five-part series tells the story of brain scientist Alice Flaherty’s journey to understand the madness that consumed her brain and body for a time—a journey which eventually led to acclaimed author and “great god of depression” William Styron. Three years later, producers Karen Brown and P...more

  • Behind the Series: The Polybius Conspiracy

    May 05 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Showcase from Radiotopia. This week, we revisit The Polybius Conspiracy. Initially released in 2017, this seven-part series told the creepy story surrounding a mind-altering arcade game from the 1980s and the quest of protagonist Bobby Feldstein to find vindication for an alleged abduction and assault he linked to playing the mysterious Polybius. Four years later, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Lu...more

  • Behind the Series: Secrets

    Apr 28 2021

    Behind the Series is a short-run series about the shows previously featured on this very podcast: Showcase from Radiotopia. This week, we revisit Secrets, a six-part series from 2018. When released, Secrets offered listeners a compelling mix of autobiography, private admissions ranging from espionage to photography fraud, and storytelling traditions from Sweden and the U.S.. Three years later, producers and hosts Mohamed El Abed and Martin Johnson lift the curtain to share the secrets behind Sec...more

  • Showcase is Back!

    Apr 21 2021

    It’s been awhile, we know, but we’ve got some exciting Showcase updates for you. Keep an ear right here to catch a brand new series coming your way April 28. Want audio recommendations and updates about your favorite Radiotopia shows? Sign up for the Citizen newsletter at radiotopia.fm/citizen.

  • A Message from Showcase

    Dec 12 2019

    Now is the time when you can help us keep Showcase and all of the many parts of Radiotopia thriving. Make your mark by donating today at radiotopia.fm. And keep an ear right here for a new Showcase series coming in 2020!

  • Introducing Passenger List — Traffic

    Sep 20 2019

    A missing plane. A cabin full of suspects. A search for the truth. Passenger List is a new fictional mystery thriller from Radiotopia. Hear episode two and subscribe to the show at passengerlist.org.

  • Ways of Hearing Extra – The Making-of

    Jun 20 2019

    Occasionally between Showcase series, we’ll bring you surprise bonus episodes, like the one you’re about to hear. It’s a recording of a live conversation inspired by Ways of Hearing, the very first series we ever featured here on Showcase. Since the series aired, writer, host, co-producer (and excellent musician) Damon Krukowski has taken the podcast to the page, with Ways of Hearing the book, published by MIT Press in May 2019. The conversation was recorded live before a studio audience on ...more

  • Spacebridge #4 – The Fifth Dimension

    Apr 08 2019

    In the final episode of Spacebridge, big TV-satellite “spacebridges” become popular in the USSR, but remain a logistical nightmare—and for American producers, especially—a labor of love that few can afford. Meanwhile, a new breed of citizen diplomat enters the scene, determined to do an end-run around the USSR’s ancient telephone system. They find ways to connect people via a new-fangled contraption, the modem. The consequences of those connections linger today. Spacebridge is a production of S...more

  • Spacebridge #3 – A Live Studio Audience

    Mar 22 2019

    The Soviet Union faces a series of funerals for elderly heads of state; meanwhile the nation falls in love with a “citizen diplomat” from America, a young girl. Popular daytime TV host Phil Donahue agrees to co-host a spacebridge with Vladimir Pozner, a multi-lingual Soviet known for expounding his government’s views on US TV. Soviet and American audiences argue about everything from geopolitics to sex in the resulting “citizen summits,” which rivet participants but also put many careers on the ...more

  • Spacebridge #2 – Foreign Policy According to Freud

    Mar 08 2019

    The first two-way satellite links between the US and USSR are strange, disorganized, and sometimes a little magical. Battling language and technological barriers, Soviet and American musicians, computing pioneers, scientists, and even kids find a way to stage a series of exchanges across the skies — at first awkward, but growing more meaningful as Cold War paranoia ratchets ever higher. Spacebridge is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia with additional funding from the Carnegie Corpo...more

  • Spacebridge #1 – Hidden Human Reserves

    Mar 01 2019

    At a low point in the Cold War, three men walk into a bureaucrat’s office at Gosteleradio, the state broadcaster of the Soviet Union. Two are Americans: an astronaut, and a researcher of psychic phenomena. The third is a Russian utopian with a notebook full of phone numbers he’s not supposed to know. The three want approval for something that’s never been tried before: a two-way, simultaneous satellite link between the enemy empires of the US and USSR. Spacebridge is a production of Showcase fr...more

  • Next on Showcase: Spacebridge

    Feb 22 2019

    Spacebridge tells a largely-forgotten saga of the late Cold War, when despair about the prospects of a nuclear conflict gripped the world. Both Soviets and Americans grasped at emerging communication technology via satellite and early Internet “spacebridges” that brought together citizen diplomats ranging from New Agers to tech-enthusiasts to astronauts. The urge to “just connect” helped tilt the world from top-down broadcasting to the more horizontal, Internet-levelled society where we all now ...more

  • The Stoop #4 – You May Not Get It, But I Love You

    Dec 07 2018

    The Stoop talks to interracial couples having difficult conversations around race, love and identity at a time when racial tensions are high. And when there’s kids in the mix, these conversations can be even harder. We also hear from Professor Shantel Buggs—author of the study “Dating in the Time of #BlackLivesMatter”—who shares her findings from talking with with dozens of women about whether awareness of racial issues mattered when they were choosing a partner. This mini-series of The Stoop ...more

  • The Stoop #3 – I Got the Nod

    Nov 30 2018

    It’s called “the nod,” that silent acknowledgement of solidarity that especially happens when Black folk see one another in spaces where they are “the onlys.” In this episode, The Stoop hits the streets with black radio producers to give the nod and report back from New York, Seattle, and North Carolina. This mini-series of The Stoop is produced especially for Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s hosted and produced by Leila Day and Hana Baba, edited by Julie Caine and Casey Miner, engineered ...more

  • The Stoop #2 – Gullah Geechee

    Nov 23 2018

    Lean in for this one, as The Stoop heads to the lowcountry of South Carolina to celebrate the language and culture of the Gullah Geechee, a people rooted in a mix of African cultures. Meet Gullah royalty Queen Quet, unwavering defender of Gullah Geechee culture, and Professor Sunn m'Cheaux, who found himself teaching a language he’d often been told not to speak while growing up. This mini-series of The Stoop is produced especially for Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s hosted and produced by...more

  • The Stoop #1 – Your Blood Don’t Lie

    Nov 16 2018

    Thin nose, high cheekbones, kinky hair, what you got in your blood? Your blood won’t lie, but does it determine your identity? We meet two women – Uzaz Shami, a Nubian woman who didn’t expect her results, and Shonda Buchanan who has always identified as Native American but isn’t always accepted as that. What percent of an ethnicity makes you part of that group? Does it even matter? Co-hosts Leila and Hana also take the test, and things take an unexpected turn. This miniseries of The Stoop is pr...more

  • Next on Showcase: The Stoop

    Nov 09 2018

    Coming up next on Showcase: The Stoop. The Stoop celebrates black joy, digging deeper into stories about blackness that we don’t hear enough about. Hosts Leila Day and Hana Baba bring you honest, lively conversations from across the black diaspora. The Stoop is produced and hosted by Leila Day and Hana Baba, edited by Julie Caine, engineered by Seth Samuel, and associate produced by Jessica Jupiter. Music by Daoud Anthony and artwork by Neema Iyer. Special thanks to KALW, the NPR Story Lab , ...more

  • The Great God of Depression BONUS – A Visit With Tony Shalhoub

    Aug 17 2018

    Actor Tony Shalhoub is well known for his role as one of the few openly mentally ill characters in television – an obsessive compulsive detective on the long-running show Monk. In this bonus episode of The Great God of Depression, Shalhoub sits down with co-producer Karen Brown to read passages from William Styron's work, and share his perspective on mental illness and creativity. If you haven’t yet heard The Great God of Depression, all five episodes are available now. For links, photos and m...more

  • The Great God of Depression #5 – The Shining World

    Aug 03 2018

    In the final episode, after years of struggling with depression, William Styron keeps his bargain with his readers, and his wife works hard to keep his spirits up until the very end. Alice Flaherty emerges from her own years of madness to a happier life, albeit a less literary one. The Great God of Depression is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s produced by Karen Brown and Pagan Kennedy, with support from New England Public Radio. Music and sound design by Ian Coss. Julie Sha...more

  • The Great God of Depression #4 – The White Whale

    Aug 03 2018

    William Styron could never finish the war novel that was meant to be his masterpiece. Did that failure lead to his final depression? Or did depression stop him from writing? He and his doctor Alice Flaherty pore over the question together, trying to ward off his suicidal fears and a baffling paralysis, until his wife makes an unconventional and risky suggestion. The Great God of Depression is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s produced by Karen Brown and Pagan Kennedy, with su...more

  • The Great God of Depression #3 – The Stolen Brain

    Aug 03 2018

    After writing a revolutionary memoir, William Styron declares he has beaten depression, but he is wrong. A frightening repeat of madness and writer’s block brings on shame and desperate measures. He seeks help from brilliant neurologist Alice Flaherty, who has herself admitted to being “openly crazy.” Can she save him? The Great God of Depression is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s produced by Karen Brown and Pagan Kennedy, with support from New England Public Radio. Music a...more

  • The Great God of Depression #2 – The Angel of Death

    Aug 03 2018

    On the heels of enormous literary success, author William Styron experiences a near-fatal depression and emerges as a defender of the mentally ill. Neurologist Alice Flaherty tries to balance a rare mental disorder with the birth of her healthy twins. The Great God of Depression is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s produced by Karen Brown and Pagan Kennedy, with support from New England Public Radio. Music and sound design by Ian Coss. Julie Shapiro is the executive producer....more

  • The Great God of Depression #1 – The Night Kingdom

    Aug 03 2018

    After a personal tragedy, newly minted neurologist Alice Flaherty falls into a rabbit hole of mania, delusions and creative overload—and encounters a famous writer who revolutionized the conversation about mental illness. The Great God of Depression is a production of Showcase from PRX’s Radiotopia. It’s produced by Karen Brown and Pagan Kennedy, with support from New England Public Radio. Music and sound design by Ian Coss. Julie Shapiro is the executive producer. Find links, photos and more ...more

  • Escape to Radiotopia with Three New Shows

    May 31 2018

    This summer, grab your earbuds and escape to Radiotopia! Take us along on your road trips, outdoor adventures and simple staycations. We’re launching a new Showcase from Radiotopia series, two new Radiotopia shows, plus new seasons and series from your already beloved Radiotopia podcasts. New shows will include ZigZag, in which two entrepreneurial women (Manoush Zomorodi and Jen Poyant, formerly of Note to Self) set out to change the direction of journalism, capitalism, and their lives; Everyth...more

  • Errthang #8 – Songs in the Key of Our Lives

    May 13 2018

    Al and Willie wrap up the season right where they started – with each other. After 30 years of friendship, their origin story is finally revealed. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and actor Jason Stephens. Check out season one here. S2 of Errthang is a production of Showcase, from PRX’s Radiotopia. Find out more and listen to the previous series, Ways of Hearing, The Polybius Conspiracy and Secrets, at ...more

  • Errthang #7 – John Coffey Refuses to Save the World, Part Two

    May 04 2018

    In this second half of Errthang’s original radio drama: John Coffey doesn’t want to be Magical Negro anymore and the universe trembles in the aftershock of his decision. All John wants is a story all his own; a history deeper than him just saving white people. John sets out to find that story with the help of his fellow Magical Negroes and his creator, Stephen King. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and a...more

  • Errthang #6 – John Coffey Refuses to Save the World, Part One

    Apr 27 2018

    In this episode, Errthang takes on radio drama: John Coffey waits to play his part in The Green Mile in the room of Magical Negroes. With him are other Magical Negroes: Mother Abigail, Bagger Vance, and God (with a Little g). When John learns the nature of his power, he doesn’t want to be magical anymore and refuses to go. But everyone has to play their part, or the universe might fall apart. John Coffey and the rest of the Magical Negroes wrestle with question; are we all destined to play the r...more

  • Errthang #5 – How to Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America

    Apr 20 2018

    This episode features Kiese Laymon’s memoir about growing up as a young black man in the South. The piece is performed by a small group of young black men who Al mentored in their youth. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and actor Jason Stephens. Check out season one here. S2 of Errthang is a production of Showcase, from PRX’s Radiotopia. Find out more and listen to the previous series, Ways of Hearing, ...more

  • Errthang #4 – The Good Guy Myth

    Apr 13 2018

    Al goes deep exploring the "good guy’s” relationship to the #MeToo movement, through a story about his old friend, Louis. After the story, Al sits down with feminist commentator Kimberly Foster of For Harriet, to talk about the story, Rape Culture, and how to move forward. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and actor Jason Stephens. Check out season one here. S2 of Errthang is a production of Showcase, f...more

  • Errthang #3 – No Ordinary Love

    Apr 06 2018

    Al and Willie tell stories about fatherhood. Al’s story is about being a black father to a white kid, while Willie recounts teaching his son how to handle a bully. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and actor Jason Stephens. Check out season one here. Season 2 of Errthang is a production of Showcase, from PRX’s Radiotopia. Find out more and listen to the previous series, Ways of Hearing, The Polybius Cons...more

  • Errthang #2 – What the Hell is Wrong with Al?

    Mar 30 2018

    Al recounts when he went to a protest to report the news, but became the news. Letson saved a right-wing protester from a vicious beating by Antifa. This episode is about why he did it, how it all happened, and how he felt afterwards. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, with co-host and music supervisor Willie Evans Jr., show systemizer Brie Burge and actor Jason Stephens. Check out season one here. Season 2 of Errthang is a production of Showcase, from PRX’s Radiotopia. Find out mor...more

  • Errthang #1 – 808s and Three Heartbreaks

    Mar 23 2018

    Al Letson and Willie Evans Jr. are back with season two of Errthang! After a long hiatus, the dynamic duo returns to tell stories, and have a good time. This season Letson and Evans focus on stories and interviews about fatherhood, the political unrest in the country, and ruminations on love. It’s a wild, fun ride with a lot of heart and depth. In episode one, Al tells the stories of three excruciating heartbreaks that will leave you laughing. Errthang is produced and hosted by Al Letson, wit...more

  • Next on Showcase: Errthang

    Mar 09 2018

    Coming up next on Showcase: Errthang Errthang is just that: everything that’s percolating in journalist/storyteller Al Letson’s brain; stories told with a lot of heart, interviews with a lot of thought, music with a funky beat, and a good time with co-host Willie Evans Jr. Stay tuned for eight weekly episodes starting March 23. Find out more at radiotopia.fm/showcase.

  • Secrets #6 – A Life in Lies is a Life with Loose Ends

    Feb 16 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. What happens when you face those secrets? In the final episode of our series, Mohamed’s secret sister Maria finally agrees to meet. Mohamed brings his daughter Samira with him to the meeting at Maria’s house a few hours drive outside Stockholm. They finally meet and talk, and try to understand together why Maria became a secret for the rest of the world. Also in episode six: We meet the former MI-5 agent Annie Machon, who was force...more

  • Secrets #5 – The Third Family

    Feb 09 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. How do you know if you ever truly know someone? Mohamed’s father abandoned Mohamed, his mother and his sisters and moved back to Morocco. There he started a third family. He told Mohamed’s mother nothing of this, and told the new family in Morocco that his family in Sweden had died. Mohamed’s father died of brain cancer in 1998, carrying all of these secrets with him into the grave. Also in episode five: We meet Swedish comedian ...more

  • Secrets #4 – Who Was My Mom?

    Feb 02 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. How is it to be the one kept in the dark? When Mohamed’s mom was left alone with her six children, she worked herself to death and eventually collapsed at home with a heart attack. Mohamed was 12 years old. Now, 25 years later, there is no one to answer the questions he would like to ask: How much did she know about Maria, the secret sister? How much did his father lie to her? Also in episode four: Andrea Hunter and her boyfriend h...more

  • Secrets #3 – Broken Dreams

    Jan 26 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. What happens when you’re too ashamed to face the truth? Mohamed’s parents both worked as cleaners, trying to earn enough money to feed six children. When Mohamed was just a year old, his father left his mother in Sweden and travelled back to Morocco, leaving her alone to raise their children. She continued to work day and night to make ends meet. Since Mohamed’s childhood, thousands more immigrants have arrived in Sweden with dre...more

  • Secrets #2 – How to Create a Secret

    Jan 19 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. What happens when a secret becomes larger than life? When Mohamed’s mother was a young teenager in Morocco, she entered an arranged marriage with his father, Ben Assai. When Mohamed’s father eventually travelled to Sweden to start a new life for his family, he met another woman and with her conceived a secret daughter, Maria. In episode two, we also travel deep into the forest to meet the Norwegian nature photographer Terje Hellesö...more

  • Secrets #1 – Discover a Secret

    Jan 12 2018

    Secrets is a show about the secrets we all carry inside of us. When Mohamed El Abed found out that he had a secret sister, it was 25 years before he could start putting the pieces together. Across six episodes of Secrets, you’ll hear Mohamed’s story, and meet both people who live every day with a significant lie, and people affected by the lies of others. How is it to live with a secret that no one can know about? What happens when that secret is exposed? In episode one we meet Neil Woods who, ...more

  • Next on Showcase: Secrets

    Dec 22 2017

    Greetings from Showcase, a podcast from PRX’s Radiotopia featuring original series of all stripes. Coming up first in the new year on Showcase: Secrets, by Swedish producers Mohamed El Abed, Martin Johnson and Åsa Secher, explores the secrets we keep in our lives, and the overwhelming complexities of being human. Stay tuned for six weekly episodes starting January 12. Find out more at radiotopia.fm/showcase.

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #7 – The Final Level

    Nov 17 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #6 – The Code

    Nov 10 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #5 – The Seller

    Nov 03 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #4 – The Rewind

    Oct 27 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #3 – The Cassette

    Oct 20 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #2 – The Missing

    Oct 13 2017

    In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an exploration into how we consume and perpet...more

  • The Polybius Conspiracy #1 – The Player

    Oct 06 2017

    Introducing our new Showcase series! In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an explo...more

  • Next on Showcase: The Polybius Conspiracy

    Sep 29 2017

    Introducing our new Showcase series! In The Polybius Conspiracy, producers Jon Frechette and Todd Luoto investigate the decades-old urban legend of Polybius, a mysterious arcade game from the '80s whose alleged existence in the Pacific Northwest is fueled by myth and an obsessive online fan base, and which may have factored in the abduction of two teenage boys. Told as a hybrid documentary/fictional story, the series is an artful meditation on how urban legends take hold and spread, and an explo...more

  • Ways of Hearing #6 – NOISE

    Sep 22 2017

    Ways Of Hearing has looked at how digital technology has changed our world: our sense of time, of space, of intimacy and exchange. In the final episode, Damon lays out an essential choice: between a world enriched by noise, and a world that strives toward signal only. Guests include: Dr. Alicia Quesnel of Harvard Medical School and Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary; audio engineers/musicians Steve Albini and Bob Weston (Electrical Audio, Shellac) This is the sixth and final episode of Ways of Hearing,...more

  • Ways of Hearing #5 – POWER

    Sep 08 2017

    When you go into a bookstore, or record store, or library, you enter another world that you have to learn to navigate. You adapt to it. But today’s digital corporations have created a musical universe that adapts, predictably, to you. Guests include: Jimmy Johnson, owner/founder of music distributor Forced Exposure; Paul Lamere, director of developer platform for Spotify; and Elaine Katzenberger, executive director of City Lights Books. This is the fifth episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part p...more

  • Ways of Hearing #4 – MONEY

    Sep 01 2017

    In the 20th century, music seemed like an object — bought and sold like any other product. But digital technology has dematerialized music, separating it from money and revealing its real terms of exchange. Guests include: Artist and writer Jace Clayton, also known as DJ /rupture; Victoria Ruiz and Joey DeFrancesco of the Providence punk band Downtown Boys. This is the fourth episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part podcast hosted by musician Damon Krukowski (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi), expl...more

  • Ways of Hearing #3.5 – BONUS: Ways of Song Exploding

    Aug 25 2017

    On the hit podcast Song Exploder, we learn the digital secrets behind some of today's best songs. But we hardly ever hear the voice of the show's creator, Hrishikesh Hirway. In a special bonus episode to Ways of Hearing, Damon Krukowski interviews Hrishikesh — and explodes Song Exploder. This is a bonus episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part podcast hosted by musician Damon Krukowski (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi) that explores the nature of listening in our digital world. Credits: Produced ...more

  • Ways of Hearing #3 – LOVE

    Aug 18 2017

    You don't have to be the son of a jazz singer to recognize the voice of a loved one as music, made up of sounds so basic to our understanding that they precede language. And yet our digital devices strip much of that away, trading intimacy for efficiency. But what is the essential part of our voices, and what isn’t? Guests include: jazz singer (and Damon's mom) Nancy Harrow, Roman Mars of 99% Invisible, and musicologist Gary Tomlinson. This is the third episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part po...more

  • Ways of Hearing #2 – SPACE

    Aug 11 2017

    In Tokyo, people on crowded trains pretend they’re asleep, to avoid eye contact. But in modern-day New York – richer, neater, just as noisy – count the headphones: it’s like we’re avoiding ear contact. In this episode, Damon examines how digital technology is privatizing public space. Guests include writer/activist Jeremiah Moss and historian Emily Thompson. This is the second episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part podcast hosted by musician Damon Krukowski (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi), exp...more

  • Ways of Hearing #1 – TIME

    Aug 04 2017

    Contemplate the way digital audio – in music recording, and in radio and television broadcast – employs a different sense of time than we use in our offline life, a time that is more regular and yet less communal. Guests include: Ali Shaheed Muhammed of A Tribe Called Quest; and Joe Castiglione, the radio voice of the Boston Red Sox. This is the first episode of Ways of Hearing, a six-part podcast hosted by musician Damon Krukowski (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi), exploring the nature of liste...more

  • Introducing… Showcase from Radiotopia

    Jul 31 2017

    Radiotopia is pleased to introduce Showcase, a new podcast featuring original series of all stripes, from producers around the world. For this intro episode, Roman Mars (99% Invisible host / creator and Radiotopia partner) talks with Julie Shapiro (Radiotopia executive producer) about the project. Hint: This is a podcast for the adventurous listener. Plus! Hear a preview of the first Showcase series, a six-parter about listening in the digital age, from acclaimed musician, writer and thinker Da...more