We Hear You: Crime Stream - an Interview with Jess
As one of the architects of the We Hear You series, our Digital Manager Jess' story about listening to true crime podcasts in the gym inspired us to ask 'what are the strange ways that people use audio?'. So, we asked Jess - why do you listen to true crime podcasts?
"My interest in true crime came from my mum; growing up I remember always looking through her collection of true crime books. Hearing how these criminals were captured and the stories of the survivors is really empowering. I think that’s why they work so well when I’m running or working out. I got made fun of, especially in school, for being interested in true crime and serial killers and stuff.
“But, through these podcasts, I’ve discovered that lots of people find true crime just as compelling. It’s crazy, every true-crime podcast you listen to now talks about the communities they have built. And, it’s just nice to know that other people were the same and that I’m not weird. I always got called weird… never “quirky” though.”
Jess’ Top True Crime Podcasts
I absolutely love this podcast! Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat are amazing hosts. Ashley Flowers is part of the board of directors for CrimeStoppers which is a non-profit organisation, and I remember CrimeStoppers growing up (even though I grew up in Canada). She has been so close to real-life crime and it comes across in the way the show is presented. It’s not full of gore, it just contains the elements of the story that you need.
My Favourite Murder
Obviously, My Favourite Murder has to be included. The hosts, Karen and Georgia, are very, very relatable. They met at a party and both realised they were obsessed with true crime and decided to start the podcast. They have a great sense of humour - without being insulting or offensive - just very funny. Sometimes listening to something really dark can make you feel a bit more anxious rather than taking the uneasiness away. But, Karen and Georgia are amazing at lightening the mood, I love them. (put that in so if they read this they can see that I love them).
This is one I’ve listened to really recently and it has an amazing setup. The show is hosted by seasoned reporter Josh Dean, with the help of April Balascio. April’s father is Edward James Edwards and he’s a serial killer. To put it lightly, Ed Edwards was not a nice person, so April – now in her 50s - started to look into crimes in the areas they had lived in growing up - and she started to find the details a bit too coincidental. Then after contacting the police, they started putting it all together. To me, it’s really interesting hearing things from April’s perspective. It’s coming from someone with a strong background in the story - it’s the actual true story from someone who lived it.
The Murder Squad
I’m a big fan of this podcast; I think it’s great. It’s all about Paul Holes (#hotforholes), the guy who helped find the Golden State Killer. He’s retired now and has created this podcast with Billy Jenson, who also worked on the case. The unique thing about this podcast is they give out information on the unsolved case at the end of each episode and request information from the listeners, which is super cool. It’s also very interesting hearing about a case from the detective’s perspective, how they would approach the situation, how they would deal with evidence or a victim, etc.
In the Dark
Finally, still my favourite - In the Dark. It’s a wee bit older now, but the Curtis Flowers story in particular really got me, I’ve never cried at a podcast before until I listened to that episode. All I really want to say is – you should definitely check it out for yourself.
If you feel that true crime podcasts might be for you, you're certainly not alone, Jess is with you, imploring you to give them a go. We would recommend starting with The Clearing, it’s a concise series, very well executed and with more than a few ‘Oh my gosh’ moments. Before loading up on podcasts, Jess has created her very own True Crime playlist, check it out now: