2013/10/05: Nick Likes a Thing! #1. The Dana Gould Hour

by Nick Smith

Hi! I like a thing. I'm going to tell you about it. This is the first installment of a series of indefinite (but if I have a track record for blogging, very short) series on crap that I like. 

I listen to a shitload of podcasts you guys. When I drive home to visit my parents in upstate NY, I look forward to the 13-hour drive because it gives me the opportunity to knock out some podcasts. One of my favorite podcasts is the brainchild of quite possibly the most underrated comedian in America: Dana Gould. 

This sort-of monthly podcast does not have a general theme, but rather chooses a different topic every episode. For the most part, Dana just sits down with a few comedian friends (or sometimes other friends, the great Eddie Pepitone is almost always involved) and gets a discussion going, usually focused around an episode's theme. The discussion is always fantastic, fueled by his talented guests, and Dana's own razor-sharp wit and superhuman ability to pull a ridiculous comparison or obscure reference from thin air.

In addition to the fantastic discussions (which make the podcast worth the listen anyway), Dana throws a couple other gems into the mix. At least once per episode, Dana will spend 5 to 10 minutes explaining the importance of a completely obscure piece of culture from a different time (usually 50s or 60s...70s at the latest). It is always fascinating, be it a random horror flick from the late 60s or a group of gospel/country singers from the 40s.

There is also a brilliant recurring sketch, where Dana and the great John Ennis (of Mr. Show fame) play the title characters of Political Talk with Two Guys From Boston . They start out discussing some issue that is in the national dialogue at the time, and shoot off down all sorts of sidestreets and ratholes about their relationships with their fathers, their memories of Gina Ventura from high school, and how they would have dealt with Gaddafi.

Dana Gould is one of the most gifted comedic minds of the last 20 years. His podcast is a testament to his sharpness and his unimpeachable taste. If you need proof go watch his standup on Netflix (I think it's still there) and listen to it on Spotify. But if you've read this far, I imagine you trust my taste enough that you'll just go download the podcast.  Pick any episode. Or start with at the beginning with the brilliantly titled premiere episode. There was a lot of talk about Woody Allen in it, and some regarding his relationship with his once-stepdaughter. It is, of course, titled "Soon-Yi or Later."