Podcasts offer alternative entertainment

Grace Shin, co-editor-in-chief

If you walk down the hallways of GBS, many students will be listening to music by Beyoncé, Kendrick Lamar, or other popular artists. However, you can find sophomore Adair McMahon listening to podcasts about music, such as “Song Exploder.” Like McMahon, several other South students choose podcasts as the background noise to their life because of the information and entertainment that can be found in them.

McMahon says she also listens to “Lore”, a podcast that tells scary historical stories, in addition to her music-related podcasts, especially at night when she is doing her homework. She says her interest started because she wanted to explore the podcast app on her phone.

“[By listening to podcasts, you can learn] stuff you wouldn’t hear otherwise,” McMahon said. “Everybody listens to different ones, and it’s just kind of tidbits of information you can use in your day to day life, which is pretty awesome.”

Like McMahon, senior Kate Freidinger also started listening to podcasts like  “The Morning Breath” (a pop culture podcast) early in high school and considers the information she learns from them as interesting. However, she says she mainly listens to them because they are therapeutic for her.

“I can’t listen to music for long periods of time [because] I get bored, so podcasts keep me entertained for longer,” Freidinger said. “[They also help] me fall asleep just because hearing someone else talk makes me not think about stuff I’m worrying about.”

According to junior Andrew Kurland, he began listening to podcasts to further his passion for NASCAR after being introduced to it by a friend. He says listening to them made up for the NASCAR radio channel that he cannot pay for and listen to while still getting to hear the perspectives of the racers.

“Sometimes broadcasts and other sporting outlets in media don’t quite necessarily get the full story and for drivers who openly explain their side of the story for 30 minutes or so uninterrupted is really interesting,” Kurland said. “It’s a different and unique perspective and almost like an insider look at everything in the world of racing.”

With this introduction to podcasts, Kurland soon started to create his own where he comments and reflects on his experiences working for NASCAR Acceleration Nation, the official NASCAR website for kids, along with the friend who introduced him to podcasts.

“I want to go into the journalism field … and [making] podcasts is definitely a great start,” Kurland said. “I have time to sit down, give my take on things and [share] my own opinions.”

Kurland and McMahon both believe that there is a podcast for everyone. Freidinger says everybody should try them no matter what others think.

“When I tell [people that I listen to podcasts], they think it’s weird,” Freidinger said. “But I think people should try it. It helps pass the time … and it’s just fun. Everyone should give it a try.”