The audio storytelling landscape is a vast, potentially daunting place for amateurs and radio veterans alike. Questions frequently arise like: How do you find your new favorite show? How do you listen to great pieces that aren’t part of an ongoing series? How do you fill your day with high-quality content with which you aren’t already familiar? How do you cut down on time spent browsing and get to listening faster? Cue PRX Remix.
The Solution: PRX Remix
Remix is a never-ending, highly curated storytelling channel from PRX.
We believe people fall in love with shows by listening to, not reading about, them. With Remix, all you need to do is hit ‘play’ and we do the rest.
What you will hear on this “never-ending storytelling channel”
At any moment you can tap into a curated bounty of fantastic stories via Remix. You’ll hear from popular podcasts like Gravy, Criminal, and The Longest Shortest Time as well as more under-the-radar pods like Scene On Radio, Rumble Strip Vermont, and Sift. Remix also houses the most creative broadcast pieces from stations like KALW, KFAI and WBEZ and fresh station-based series like Out Of The Blocks from WYPR, Kind World from WBUR and Radio Rookies from WNYC. Hear live storytelling from The Moth, Mortified, TEDTalks, and Live Law and archival interviews from Blank on Blank. We also include audio storytelling orgs like Long Haul Productions, Now Here This, This Land Press, and Third Coast. You’ll even hear scored voicemails from One Hello World, 8-year old hosts from Third Grade Audio, and random tape from Random Tape. That’s only a tiny fraction of what’s on there!
Because of the huge amount content on Remix, each month I’m featuring three of my favorite new pieces on our blog to whet your appetite. Without further ado…
This piece comes from PoetryNow, a series from The WFMT Radio Network and the Poetry Foundation. The show is an audio immersion into the concept behind a single poem. You’ll hear the poet read his or her poem and then discuss the (often surprising) motivations for writing it. It’s a simple, short (four minutes), and effective format that delivers poetry to listeners in a way that feels both relatable and compelling.
“Ode to Coffee” is a wonderful installment in the series. It focuses on a rhythmic poem about the pleasures of coffee, how different cultures affect that pleasure, and what coffee means to poet Urayoan Noel. It’s charming, and gets at the deeper tensions that arise from identifying with multiple cultures and speaking different languages. It made me crave a steaming cup of joe, even though I’m not a coffee drinker.
This piece is a documentary about a reporter’s experience dealing with cancer at a young age. She features powerful tape captured in the hospital when she first became sick, mixed with her reflections 10 years later. Moments when Ibby shares her diagnosis with her dad or describes the “chemo tree” next to her bed give listeners raw, heartbreaking and wonderfully specific insights into an unexpected struggle. Even seemingly mundane actions, like ordering room service, feel profound under the circumstances.
We should all be thanking Ibby for sticking with this piece and giving listeners access to such a personal part of her life–the result is quite beautiful. Ibby is a Boston-based journalist whose work has aired on a huge variety of programs, from WGBH’s The World to Australia’s Radiotonic.
Yes, this piece is exactly what it sounds like: famous actor Alec Baldwin does a dramatic reading of the side effects of the sedative Ambien. It’s pretty amazing, especially considering Ambien is a slightly terrifying drug that can cause side effects like giant hives, sleep cooking, and even a loss of one’s own sense of reality. It’s a silly, surprising, thoroughly entertaining diversion that made me literally laugh out loud in the middle of the PRX office.
This is just one of many installments from a series called The Phone Book, featuring other well-known people doing dramatic readings of mundane things, like Dick Cavett reading newspaper corrections, Barbara Rosenblat reading a list of Roman Catholic patron saints and Garrison Keillor reading reasons for admission to a 19th-century insane asylum.
How To Listen to PRX Remix:
Download the PRX Remix app or go to prx.mx and press ‘play’. If you’re a satellite radio kind of person, check out channel 123 on Sirius XM or XM radio. If you’re a traditionalist and stick to the radio dial, check these listings to find Remix on a station near you.