Full steam ahead: 9 long-running classic podcasts with seasoned hosts, engaging episodes, and more

round up August 8, 2022

With over 3 million podcasts available, some shows have been winning the longevity game. On our list, we’ve included shows going strong for over 5 years by seasoned hosts, including a classic storytelling series and a show dissecting your favorite hit songs with artists themselves.

There are podcasts with robust episode archives, sharing folklore, science conversations, and answering all the questions sex ed skipped over in school. Check out “WTF with Marc Maron” for extensive interviews with guests from all walks of life. Over the years, these long-running podcasts have not lost any steam and only get better.

Song Exploder podcast art

Song Exploder

Listen to ‘Song Exploder’

Radiotopia’s “Song Exploder” welcomes artists to dissect their songs and show listeners how they were created. From song concepts to lyrics, sounds, beats, and melody lines, the artists are breaking down their writing and recording processes. The series has been running since 2013 with over 240 episodes, featuring guests like Rick Astley, Perfume Genius, Halsey, Brandi Carlile, and many more.

This American Life image

This American Life

Listen to ‘This American Life’

This American Life” is a weekly radio show broadcasted on over 500 stations and reaching 2.2 million people in addition to the over 2.5 million podcast listeners. Hosted by Ira Glass, each episode shares true stories and interviews centering a theme. Recent episodes interviewed people about overturning Roe v. Wade, stories of injustices, parents taking action against school shootings, and more. The podcast version has been active since 2006.

WTF with Marc Maron podcast art

WTF with Marc Maron

Listen to ‘WTF with Marc Maron’

WTF with Marc Maron” has chatted with comedians, writers, actors, directors, authors, musicians, and other interesting guests since 2009. Marc’s engaging interview style has paved the way for over 870 episodes with Bob Saget, Barack Obama, Sandra Oh, Flea, Tony Hawk, Gilbert Gottfried, and many more.

Skeptics' Guide to the Universe podcast art

The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe

Listen to ‘The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe’

Dr. Steven Novella presents “The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe,” a weekly series covering science news, critical thinking, bad science, controversies, and conspiracy theories. Recent episodes detailed Skinwalker Ranch, the risks of sitting for long timeframes, the science of abortion, sea mining, and a free floating black hole. This podcast has released over 880 episodes since 2006.

Savage Lovecast podcast art

Savage Lovecast

Listen to ‘Savage Lovecast’

Advice columnist Dan Savage has been answering your sex and relationship questions on “Savage Lovecast” since 2006. Weekly episodes also dive into politics, current events, and chat with guests like Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Dr. Ina Park, and Jamie Barton. To ask Savage a question and possibly be featured on a future episode, leave a message at 206-302-2064.

The Moth podcast art

The Moth

Listen to ‘The Moth’

Before sharing episodes to the podcast space, “The Moth” was founded in 1997, hosted theme-oriented storytelling events, and broadcasted stories on public radio. The podcast has shared favorite “The Moth” stories captured over the years at live events. Check out over 200 episodes filled with true stories all about the human experience.

Lore podcast art


Listen to ‘Lore’

Aaron Mahnke and Grim & Mild present “Lore,” a podcast, TV show, and book series covering dark tales from history since 2015. In over 230 episodes, hear about scary stories, disastrous events, bizarre places, and mysterious creatures. There are chilling episodes sharing ghost stories, vampire folklore, paranormal activity, finding bodies, and painful pasts. Tune in biweekly for new episodes.

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History podcast art

Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History

Listen to ‘Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History’

Broadcaster and journalist Dan Carlin brings his unconventional thinking to analyzing the past. He’s asking questions like: Was Alexander the Great as bad as Adolf Hitler? Will modern civilizations fall like civilizations from past times? How would modern weapon-clad Apaches fight? Since 2006, Dan shares he’s not a historian sharing academic history, instead narrating events and drama with a Twilight Zone blend.

Criminal podcast art


Listen to ‘Criminal’

Criminal” is an OG true crime series from Vox Media Podcast Network, hosted by Phoebe Judge since 2014. From criminal investigations to murders, mysteries, and people who have been wronged, episodes welcome those involved in each case to share stories firsthand. We’ll also learn more about the criminal justice system in over 200 episodes.

New shows we love...

Join Our Newsletter

The best podcasts to listen to next, delivered right to your inbox every week.

By clicking Submit, you acknowledge you have read and agree to our Website and Digital Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.