HowSound

The backstory to great radio storytelling. This is an extraordinary podcast, in and of itself, and it’s particularly great for those of us who are fascinated by the craft of audio.  Rob Rosenthal is the lead teacher for the Transom Story Workshop, and this is his podcast.  He often shares an excerpt from an audio piece in order to critique it, identifying significant design elements or pointing out limitations.

Especially teachable episodes

  Tinkering with Sound Design:  we learn about a challenge, faced by one of Rob’s students, Martine Power (who works on an excellent podcast herself, The Get), and the super-smart design choices that Martine lands upon.  It lends itself to in-class listening, particularly if you listen to the segment 14.50 to 19.26.  It’s striking how a seemingly staid or dry topic (“traffic circles”) can become alive and dynamic through the careful use of sound and sound design.

  My Kingdom for Some Structure:  in which Rob explores some of the differing structures that leading audio-creators use.  As always, it’s a brilliant little lesson, all the more effective because Rob himself is such an audio artist.

   A Mom, a Transgender Daughter, and a Podcast:  in which Rob discusses the award-winning podcast How to Be a Girl with Marlo Mack  (this podcast recently won Best International Podcast).  Their conversation includes moving excerpts from the podcast and Marlo’s reflections on the stakes and significance of her audio work.