Made-in-Montréal podcasts have fascinating stories to tell

Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden is a Montréal-based writer and editor who searches out city secrets, new bands, life-changing art and things to do with her perpetually active kid. Robyn has covered major events for HOUR, MUTEK, ARTINFO, CKUT 90.3FM and more.

This article was updated on August 22, 2023.

Montréal is a city full of stories – and podcasts to tell them on. Several English-language podcasts bring the spirit of Montréal to the internet airwaves these days, talking with fellow Montrealers and far-away guests about everyday life, art and culture, global politics and more, all with a Montréal twist.

Portrait sonore

Portrait sonore offers immersive documentaries and dynamic portraits in the form of self-guided walking tours in several languages. Covering architecture and urban planning (Expo 67, downtown modern, Théâtre du Gesù, 11 places of worship in Westmount), public art (Parc Jean-Drapeau, 30 murals in the Quartier Latin), nature in the city (Parc du Mont-Royal), literature and poetry for children (Plateau Mont-Royal / Si Michel Tremblay m'était conté...) and key figures (21 grandes Montréalaises se racontent), your strolls through the heart of the city will be accompanied by stellar narration and original music. In addition to these documentary walks, Portrait sonore has developed a new series focusing on the over 500-year aboriginal presence on the Montréal territory, a project carried out in collaboration with First Nations people (Seconde nature). This fall, the Fenêtre sur l'avenue des Pins project will be unveiled, and two others are planned for 2024: an exploration of Ville-Émard in the footsteps of poet Marie Uguay, and an amble through Montréal’s picturesque alleyways.


Vous faites partie de l'histoire!  (French only)

This podcast, produced by MEM - Centre des mémoires montréalaises, was created in collaboration with young people aged 12 to 17 who had recently immigrated to Montreal. Through six episodes recorded during thematic workshops, they talk about the city and their journey to Montréal.


Alcove moments

Leadership, creativity and impact: all three are natural podcast subject matter. In the intimate atmosphere of Alcove moments (bilingual), influential Montréalers share stories and sound advice for the future.


The other half of history

This is not the history you learn in school! This podcast revisits the history of the First Peoples, punctuated by encounters with people intimately familiar with the places mentioned in the podcast and the realities of their communities.


WireTap and fascinating friends

A podcast-like CBC radio show before podcasts were a thing, Montréal-based WireTap returns in podcast form to share host Jonathan Goldstein's trademark monologues, stories, and phone calls with a whole new audience and long-time fans. The cross-Canada cult classic show ran from 2004 until ending in 2015 with award-winning (video!) episode “How To Age Gracefully.”


Also check out Goldstein's podcast Heavyweight on the Gimlet network and CBC original podcast Love Me, about the messiness of human relationships, by WireTap producers Mira Burt-Wintonick and Cristal Duhaime.

Society and culture on the mic

Personal stories, political movements and engaging conversation make CBC Listen podcast Seat at the Table a must-subscribe. Montréal-based friends and well-known media figures Martine St-Victor and Isabelle Racicot talk candidly with guests on a range of topics, including recent episodes about being Black in media with Roxane Gay, derailing the revolution with Andray Domise, and food and politics with Marcus Samuelsson.


Hosted by “queer, cosmically-destined BFFs” Thomas Leblanc and Tranna Wintour, Chosen Family is another excellent CBC Listen podcast out of Montréal, with guests such as Brandon Ash-Mohammed, Rufus Wainwright, Sarah Schulman, Ty Mitchell, Bob the Drag Queen and other fabulous luminaries.

Podcasting from 9 to 5

A flagship show on podcast network 9to5, Go Plug Yourself asks Montrealer entertainers of all stripes the tough questions, like “What is the OMG moment of your life?” and “If you could be one existing soda, what would you be?” The answers are typically hilarious, with a good dose of politics and social commentary thrown in. Go Plug Yourself co-host Keith also co-hosts 9ES (aka The 9to5 Entertainment System), discussing movies, video games and all things pop culture.

Good conversation matters

In podcast Coffee with My Ma, actor Kaniehtiio Horn (known for Letterkenny, The Man in the High Castle and more), who grew up partly in Kahnawake just outside Montréal, sits down with her mom Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) political activist, civil servant and former model Kahentinetha Horn. This storytelling podcast with a personal twist takes listeners from 1960s protests to the 1990 Oka Crisis to Wetsuweten actions to Horn's current policy work. On a related note, listen to The Secret Life of Canada's Kanesatake 300 Years Later episodes.


And step into the very recent past (2017) with CBC’s Montreapolis, as host Steve Rukavina talks with creative Montrealers, including novelist Kim Thúy and rapper Jonathan Emile, about their daily lives in the city they live in.


Food, music and mayhem

Two well-spoken kids, Gabriel and Gemma, and their guests drop all kinds of food knowledge in podcast Bagels & Baos, featuring amusing taste tests and interviews about everything from matzo to mocktails. A short-lived but highly entertaining local podcast, Dudes Talk Food debates whether sandwiches are dinner food, what constitutes a proper burger topping, and more.


In new podcast What Is This Music?!, Malcolm Fraser (of Montréal band The World Provider) sets out to explore the wide world of music in Montréal and beyond, featuring candid conversations with musicians such as Chilly Gonzales and Eliza Kavtion. And FML Podcast gets locals Freddy Lloyd and Lito Brigante debating hip hop culture, sports, politics and their own “dope stories” about life.

Robyn Fadden

Robyn Fadden is a Montréal-based writer and editor who searches out city secrets, new bands, life-changing art and things to do with her perpetually active kid. Robyn has covered major events for HOUR, MUTEK, ARTINFO, CKUT 90.3FM and more.

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