True crime stories have been a boon to the podcast industry. Money in the bank, one might say. So it’s no surprise that a new slate of Canadian content from Audible.ca includes True North Heists, a just-launched 10-part series documenting audacious capers.
Actor Colm Feore narrates the show, lending an old-timey panache to the storytelling. The featured 25-minute episodes cover the flashy exploits of 1950s robber Edwin Boyd, the sticky shenanigans of 2012′s maple syrup swipe, the elaborate considerations of Montreal’s vault-raiding Georges Lemay and more.
Audible’s Truth North Heists and its business podcast The Revisionaries are currently streaming. Future audio series to come include Seven Truths (debuting Nov. 26), with Globe and Mail columnist and Indigenous rights activist Tanya Talaga. Next year sees the release of a new audio drama from acclaimed playwright Hannah Moscovitch and a thriller series from author Andrew Pyper.
True North Heists is free until Oct. 27. As is The Revisionaries, with Dragons' Den’s Michele Romanow, who talks with innovators and entrepreneurs about their early failures and ultimate financial successes. Clearly, there’s more than one way to make bank.
Something musical: Texas Monthly magazine’s new podcast One By Willie asks a notable Willie Nelson fan to discuss a single song by the herb-smoking American icon. What’s interesting about the often poignant debut episode is that we learn as much about the admirer as we do about Nelson. The fan is Margo Price, the red-hot country singer-songwriter who chose Nelson’s hit from 1980, Angel Flying Too Close to the Ground. It’s a song about loss, of which Price has had her share. With host John Spong, she talks about it. They also chat about the song’s malleable service: “I love being able to kind of interpret it almost however you need it at the time emotionally,” Price says. A higher compliment to Nelson is hard to imagine. Price also likes a good dirty joke, and so will you when you hear her share one.
Something topical: We’ve seen protests against police brutality and movements for Black lives before. What makes the activism of 2020 different? With Resistance, new from Spotify and Gimlet, the American poet, writer and producer Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr. wonders what will happen when the weather turns cold and the protests are less in fashion. “How can you keep on resisting,” he asks, “when everybody stops showing up?” Tejan-Thomas Jr. explains Resistance as a show about people who refuse to accept things as they are – “people putting their lives on the line, people becoming leaders, people becoming targets.” Interviewees include activists and Black artists such as musician Anderson Paak.
Something historical: “This is a stickup!” Toronto’s Edward Boyd didn’t just rob banks, he did it with a flair of a movie star – such as James Cagney (his hero) or Errol Flynn (the dashing actor Boyd resembled). The debut episode of Audible.ca’s True North Heists charismatically tells the story of the Boyd Gang, who made unauthorized withdrawals across Toronto in the early 1950s. Bank robbers in that age were front-page news and the subjects of excitable headlines. Their derring-do served as a sort of entertainment. Host Colm Feore, a Stratford Festival thespian, adds a bit of drama with his old-school narration on ringleader Boyd, a city transit employee who “flexed his long-smothered artistic impulses” with his crowd-pleasing stealing.
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