Music podcasts are a great way to discover new and emerging artists and listen to exclusive interviews, and in-depth discussions about music.
Real music lovers don’t just appreciate the sounds, they crave the discourse. They want to delve deep into the nitty-gritty of the art form, to explore its every angle. And that’s where music podcasts come in. These audio gems offer a wealth of insight, analysis, and behind-the-scenes stories, from in-depth looks at classic and contemporary albums to dissections of popular music samples and the origin of riffs.
But with so many options out there, it can be overwhelming to sift through the noise. That’s why we’ve curated a list of the best music podcasts available, so you can spend less time searching and more time listening. From discussions with industry insiders to deep dives into specific genres, these podcasts will keep your ears buzzing and your mind engaged. So tune in, and turn it up, here are some of the best podcasts going.
Award-winning producer Rick Rubin runs the podcast with NYT staff writer Malcolm Gladwell and music journalist Bruce Headlam, offering up in-depth, passionate conversations about life, inspiration, and craft.
232 episodes and counting, here is a rundown on a few favorite episodes.
Jack White, a garage rock icon and one of the most fascinating figures in modern music, recently dropped by Rick Rubin’s Shangri-La Studios for a conversation that delved deep into White’s roots in the Detroit scene and the creative process behind some of his most iconic songs. White and Rubin discussed everything from the origins of The White Stripes to the enduring appeal of “Seven Nation Army” and even treated listeners to an exclusive acoustic performance of White’s new track “A Tip From You To Me.” It’s a must-listen for any fan of White or anyone interested in the inner workings of a true rock and roll visionary.
Prior to dropping his highly-anticipated third album, This Is What I Mean, Stormzy sat down with legendary producer Rick Rubin for a candid conversation for i-D Magazine’s Royalty issue. In this must-listen episode, Stormzy gives listeners a sneak peek of his new album, delving into the creative process behind it and explaining why he put his audience’s needs last when recording it. He also opens up about how a personal heartbreak and a renewed faith in God led him to explore a new, more melodic and soulful sound. Stormzy’s conversation with Rubin is a rare and intimate look into the mind of one of the UK’s most exciting and innovative artists.
Neil Young, the legendary singer-songwriter and leader of Crazy Horse, sat down with Rick, fresh off the release of the band’s latest album, World Record. Produced by Rubin, the album marks a new chapter in the band’s storied career and on this episode, Young sits down with Rubin to discuss the unique way the songs on World Record came to be, and reminisces about recording some of his most iconic albums like After The Gold Rush and Harvest. Young also delves into the impact of THC on his relationship with music and how it influences his creative process. It’s a rare and intimate conversation with one of rock’s most revered figures.
Check out more here.
History Listen: Rock
Get ready for a journey through rock and roll history like never before with the debut of History Listen: Rock. Hosted by the award-winning artist St. Vincent, this podcast delves into the key moments and movements that shaped the genre, offering music addicts and casual listeners alike an in-depth look at some of the biggest rock songs and artists of all time.
From the recording studio with Big Mama Thornton as she cuts the original version of “Hound Dog” to the Sex Pistols’ doomed American tour, Bad Brains in prison, The Allman Brothers at the Fillmore, Jimi Hendrix and Patti Smith outside Electric Lady Studios, and more, History Listen: Rock illustrates the genre’s most significant narrative arcs, highlighting notable figures, events, and songs that have helped shape the music we know and love. This podcast will give you a new appreciation for your favorite melodies and the colorful stories that made them possible.
Check out History Listen: Rock here.
There is a reason that this is one of the most popular podcasts going, Questlove Supreme delivers a wild ride through the world of music hosted by none other than The Roots drummer, Questlove. With an impressive roster of guests that includes names like Michelle Obama, Jack White, and Solange, this is a must-listen, irreverent, and educational weekly podcast that digs deep into the stories of musical legends and cultural icons in a way that only Questlove and his team can deliver.
Each episode features in-depth conversations that range from the guest’s origins, including never-before-revealed secrets to their success, to their life passions and current projects.
This isn’t your typical interview show, it’s an opportunity to hear legends and legends-in-the-making bring their legacy to life in their own words. Previous guests have included Usher, Chris Rock, Steve Miller, Maya Rudolph, Weird Al, Chaka Khan, Babyface, and many more. Tune in for a journey through the world of music as you’ve never experienced before.
One of our fav episodes sees legendary rapper and “Boy Genius” Kwamé Holland as he gets nostalgic with Team Supreme, delving deep into the “golden era” of hip-hop in a conversation that promises to be both educational and entertaining. Kwamé Holland’s unique perspective as a pioneering figure in the genre makes for an insightful and engaging listen as he shares his memories and musings on the music, culture and the scene that defined a generation. From the influential artists, to the classic tracks and the moments that shaped the genre, this is a must-listen for any fan of hip-hop, or anyone interested in the cultural significance of this iconic movement in music.
Check out Questlove Supreme here.
The Zane Lowe Interview Series
When it comes to getting the biggest artists in the music industry to open up and share the stories behind their songs, there’s one interviewer that they all turn to: Zane Lowe of Apple Music. His ability to connect with his guests and get them to share their most candid thoughts is unmatched and it’s no surprise that he’s the go-to guy for the biggest names in the game.
Now, you can hear these in-depth conversations in full on Apple Podcasts. From the creative process, to the personal struggles and the moments that shaped their careers, these conversations offer a unique glimpse into the lives and minds of today’s most successful musicians.
Zane chats to Arctic Monkeys’ frontman Alex Turner, and deep dives into their highly-anticipated release “The Car”. He also speaks with Matty Healy of The 1975 to discuss the creative process behind “Being Funny In A Foreign Language” and Stevie Nicks about her new release “For What It’s Worth”, her tour, and her relationships with artists both past and present such as Tom Petty, Prince, Harry Styles, and Miley Cyrus.
Grammy-winning artist Lizzo also joins Zane in the studio for a candid conversation about her album “Special”, discussing her creative process, her relationship with social media, and even giving a demonstration of her flute-playing skills. Plus, a surprise guest joins the pair on FaceTime to chat about one track in particular. It’s a must-listen for music fans and anyone interested in the inner workings of the music industry.
Check the extensive interview here.
Get ready for a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process of some of the biggest names in music with the extremely popular podcast Song Exploder. Host and creator Hrishikesh Hirway expertly guides listeners through in-depth conversations with a diverse array of musicians, delving deep into the stories and inspiration behind their songs. Each episode is tightly edited and focused, giving listeners an intimate look at the creative process that goes into making a hit song. The guest list on this show is nothing short of impressive, featuring stars such as U2, Jack Johnson, Lorde, The Killers, Solange, and many more. This podcast is a must-listen for music enthusiasts and anyone interested in the inner workings of the music industry.
With 246 episodes and counting, you literally have almost years’ worth of great conversations to tune in to.
Some of the best lsitens are Gorillaz – Andromeda (feat. D.R.A.M.) Sharon Van Etten – Seventeen and Weezer – Summer Elaine and Drunk Dori. A great listen is Lorde – Sober, who discusses her hit song “Sober” and the creative process behind it. Lorde exudes incredible confidence as she talks about her music and her unique approach to songwriting, all while maintaining her endearingly down-to-earth personality. The episode is especially satisfying to listen to as it builds up the song brick by brick, revealing the full picture of the creative process and the amount of work that goes into producing a pop song today. It’s a must-listen for fans of Lorde and anyone interested in the inner workings of the pop music industry.
Check out Song Exploder here