HowSound show


Summary: The Backstory to Great Radio Storytelling, hosted by Rob Rosenthal, for Transom and PRX.

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 So You Want To Start A Podcast, Eh? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 22:46

Producer Nina Porzucki is giving audio producers a gift on this episode — she's sharing a work in progress, a first-draft pilot for a podcast. Nina lays out how she got to the pilot stage and now, what needs to happen next.

 Exquisitely Challenging: Reporting on Suicide | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 33:52

Erica Heilman's story "Finn and the Bell" is the best I’ve heard this year. It's a painful, graceful story about a young man's suicide in rural Vermont. Erica's heart is in the piece; you can hear it in every production and editorial choice. The story of how she made those choices is enlightening.

 Darts and Laurels | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 27:54

Rob offers darts and laurels for stories he's recently heard — what's good, what's not so good. On the list, productions from "Kids Short Stories," "Nice Try," "Demented," "The Skewer," and others.

 House Of Pod Closes The House | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 23:36

Cat Jaffee and her team put community first and foremost at House of Pod, a local podcast hub in Denver. But, after four years, House of Pod will be without a house — a loss for Denver and podcasting in general as community-based podcast facilities are few and far between. Cat explains what happened on this episode of HowSound.

 A Sonic Conjuring (Rerun) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 12:10

On this archive episode, a fascinating minute of audio — the sound of war and peace reconstructed from the exact end of World War I. Even more fascinating, the producers conjured the sound using audio shadows captured on film. 

 The World Orchestra Is Always Playing | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 28:23

Headphones on for this one. Rob marks the passing of the groundbreaking composer and sound ecologist R. Murray Schafer with his colleague and fellow composer, Hildegard Westerkamp. This episode will crack open your ears and, hopefully, spark new ways of thinking about the sonic environment and your work as an audio storyteller and producer.

 From Memoir to Radio Story | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 23:35

Ruby Schwartz pitched a story to Snap Judgement based on a memoir. They gave her the green light. And then she had to figure out how she was going to squeeze a 320-page book into a short radio documentary. How Ruby did it on this episode of HowSound.

 Interviewing for Story | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 23:10

Don't just interview to grab a bunch of information, interview for story and make your work a whole lot stronger. Alix Spiegel of Invisibilia and This American Life explains how.

 The Megan Tan Way | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 22:42

Megan Tan produced a story about dating during Covid but she didn't record any of the dates. So, what did she do to create scenes? The answer is an unusual production choice that worked incredibly well.

 Sounds Easy, But... | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 26:41

Good producers hide the difficulties. They make it all sound easy. Cariad Harmon's "Record Booth" is an excellent example. She seamlessly weaves together narration, interviews, scene tape, music, and archive tape -- like it’s no big thing. Wellllll, not so fast. Cariad shares the backstory on this HowSound.

 Goldstein on Writing, Fonts, and “The Goldstein” | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 35:21

On this episode of HowSound, a wide-ranging chat about writing for audio with one of the masters: Jonathan Goldstein of the Heavyweight podcast from Gimlet. From the importance of feeling what you write to Jonathan's penchant for courier font and a maneuver we jokingly dubbed "The Goldstein," you're bound to pick up a solid tip or three about writing.

 Stand-Ups (Rerun) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 17:03

Narrating a stand-up on location as events unfold in front of your mic is no easy thing but reporter Robert Smith makes it sound like it is. He's a master of the stand-up and he explains how he makes them work oh-so-well on this rerun episode from the HowSound archives.

 Fireworks | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:19:15

Rob Rosenthal has stepped away from teaching the Transom Story Workshop on Cape Cod. To mark the occasion, Rob's put together a fireworks show of great stories from Transom students over the years. Wear headphones!

 Narrative Justice | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 27:27

Shapearl Wells says the truest form of journalism lets others speak their own truth. And that's just what she did as host and the main character for "Somebody," a podcast that was a Pulitzer Prize finalist. "Somebody" traces Shapearl's search for the truth in the murder of her 22-year old son. On this “HowSound,” she recounts what it took to produce “Somebody” as a distraught mother with a (sometimes hidden) microphone.

 The Kids Will Have Their Say | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 20:39

The CBC's Mic Drop is a small but mighty podcast amplifying young people's voices "without any adult interruptions," as the kids put it. On this HowSound, Shari Okeke, the show's founder and producer, tells us how it all works.


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