Episode 20: Keeping it local

This week on Podcast Playlist, we discover shows that aren't looking for international acclaim. Instead, these podcasts want to introduce you to the place they call home.
Listen to the full episode53:59

This week on Podcast Playlist, we discover shows that aren't looking for international acclaim. Instead, these podcasts want to introduce you to the place they call home. 

One of the great things about podcasts, is how portable they are. You can listen to them anywhere, and the places they transport you to are just as diverse. It's just as easy to listen to a podcast that was made halfway around the world, as one produced in your hometown. On today's episode, we're zooming in. Bringing you local podcasts you'll want to subscribe to, no matter where you live.

Curious City

"They started in the mid-nineties. With some kids that grabbed a bucket and learned a talent. With a fat yellow bucket and some drum sticks." — Jerome Lucas

There are lots of things you probably don't know about the city you live in: Why don't the street numbers line up? Where does the city store all of the holiday decorations? Who keeps putting bubble bath in the fountain in the town square? We'll probably never know.

Unless you're a Chicagoan. In Curious City from WBEZ, locals ask questions and each episode has answers. Not only is the show informative, but it uses sound so expertly, listeners will feel like they've been dropped right into the middle of the windy city. In this episode, it all starts with a question about the city's "bucket boys."

Living Heritage

"Every winter he'd get on a dog team. He'd go as far North on the Labrador coast as anybody lived. And then, South as well. He was in his fifties and he was still travelling by dog team." — Dave Paddon, on his Grandfather who was a Doctor who travelled by dog team.

The next selection,Living Heritage, takes us East. Newfoundland and Labrador are known for their rich culture. Where oral storytelling tradition is a big part of the community. 

Living Heritage is produced by the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador. But, it's not really a history podcast. It's about people who are keeping the culture and traditions alive just by living their everyday lives. This episode features Dave Paddon, who is a pilot with Air Canada based out of St. John's. He grew up in Northwest River, Labrador, where he learned everything you need to tell a good story.


​"It's not speed walking. There's not a slow leisurely walk. It's kinda like a…brisk walk." — Andy, on the perfect walking pace to 'high five'. 

How much do you know about your neighbours? Jakob Lewis, creator of Neighbors, wasn't satisfied with the courteous nod we usually give to the people that live right next to us. So, he created an entire show devoted to engaging with the people in his neighbourhood in a deep and meaningful way. 

WMMT's Mountain News and World Report

"I think we need to diversify. There is so much more that we have to offer than just coal. We have talented people here. We have smart people here…I think we really need to go beyond coal." Annie, a Cumberland native, on the place coal mining has in the future of Appalachia.

A lot of communities around the world are experiencing a familiar plight right now. Boomtowns with economies based around specific industries are seeing their communities collapse as natural resources run dry. WMMT's Mountain News and World Report describes itself as a "weekly sojourn into life in central Appalachia."

Coal mining has always been the backbone of the area's economy. But it's an economy that's quickly collapsing. People are moving away because they can't find work.

The segment featured on this week's show comes from youth producer Destiny Caldwell. She spoke to young people living in the Appalachians about what kind of future they'd like to see for their community.


"We were treated like little animals in the foster home. All of a sudden I was put in these nice clothes…I was quite nervous something was going on here, because my foster mother was being very nice to me. Which was also very anxiety provoking because  she was a very nasty woman. She quite enjoyed hitting us and beating us…I think she was trying to present an appearance to a social worker who was coming to take me." — Raven Sinclair

SaskScapes made it's way onto the Podcast Playlist radar when its host Kevin Power e-mailed the show. He wrote: "SaskScapes was born from my little brain last spring. SaskCulture, here in Saskatchewan, asked me for a project idea and I piped up and said, 'I want to create the first podcast on iTunes featuring stories of arts, culture and heritage in Saskatchewan.'" 

Now entering its second season SaskScapes did a series of episodes about what is referred to as the Sixties Scoop. This was a government practice in Canada of removing of First Nations children from their homes and placing them in foster homes with white families or putting them up for adoption. 

Raven Sinclair was one of those children. She now a Ph.D. in Social Work and in her hour-long interview with Kevin Power, she talks about her personal struggles with her own mental health and her difficulties being re-introduced to her birth family.

Do you have a local podcast that you'd like to share? Send us an e-mail, tweet us @PodcastPlaylist, or find us on Facebook.

For more great podcasts, check out CBC's podcast portal — we have more than 99 home grown podcasts available for subscription or download!