Pod City: 15 Classic Podcasts Featuring SNL Alums
Podcasts don’t get much juicier than Gilbert Gottfried’s interview with Chevy Chase. On the Nov. 16 episode of Gottfried’s Amazing Colossal Podcast, the old friends flash back to Chase’s Saturday Night Live days, tell dirty jokes, gossip about Rodney Dangerfield, and do pretty much everything else I hoped they would.
Since SNL is particularly newsy right now—Marc Maron’s widely publicized Lorne Michaels interview dropped this month, too—I figured the time was right to round up some classic podcast episodes featuring former SNL players.
1. CHRIS ROCK (HERE’S THE THING, 2011)
Alec Baldwin has talked to several SNL folks on his podcast: Lorne Michaels, Kristen Wiig, Fred Armisen, Paula Pell. He specializes in asking precise questions about the creative process that other interviewers don’t; this becomes particularly apparent when he talks to an incredibly famous performer like Rock.
2. WILL FERRELL (OFF CAMERA WITH SAM JONES, 2015)
I love Jones’s lengthy, comfortable conversations. (He’s kind of Maron-esque, only calmer and cheerier.) This standout ep made me laugh out loud and taught me a little about why Ferrell has chosen particular projects.
3. TINA FEY (NERDIST, 2012)
Name someone from SNL, and there’s a good chance Nerdist has nabbed ‘em for an interview. But few podcasters can say they’ve spoken with Fey. Here, she’s game for anything and shares some of her favorite bits of pop culture.
4. AMY POEHLER (BY THE WAY, IN CONVERSATION WITH JEFF GARLIN, 2013)
Poehler makes Garlin laugh a lot during this Q&A, which, like most of his episodes, feels like you’re eavesdropping on a private dinner conversation.
5. ADAM SANDLER (NORM MACDONALD LIVE, 2014)
Macdonald hasn’t posted a new ep of his podcast/YouTube show in more than a year, which is a shame, because it featured some memorable conversations with David Spade, Kevin Nealon, and other old pals. I’d rank the Sandler episode as his best.
6. DAN AYKROYD (STARTALK RADIO, 2013)
Aykroyd had so much to say to host Neil deGrasse Tyson that this episode is a two-parter. And yes, they discuss comedy, but they also talk science! (It seems the two fields have more in common than you might think.)
7. BILL MURRAY (GRANTLAND POP CULTURE, 2014)
Murray doesn’t make many podcast appearances, so this fairly serious conversation with ESPN’s John Walsh is particularly special. They delve into sports and Murray’s film St. Vincent, but they also touch on Ghostbusters (yay).
8. LARAINE NEWMAN, CASEY WILSON, AND KEVIN NEALON (COMEDY BANG BANG, 2009)
While 2009 is considered ancient history in Podcastland, I don’t think this episode feels dated. It’s nice to hear about three different eras of SNL in one place; the trio compares experiences of getting cast, working on the show, and, ultimately, moving on.
9. RACHEL DRATCH (THE MOTH, 2015)
Dratch’s appearance on the storytelling series is sweet, funny, and unexpected—and if you want to hear more SNL alums telling stories, listen to this Molly Shannon piece from WTF and This American Life or one of Jane Curtin’s appearances on Selected Shorts.
10. DANA CARVEY (YOU MADE IT WEIRD, 2014)
Pete Holmes has talked to hundreds of performers on his podcast, and this super-long episode is one of the best, in part because they both genuinely seem to be having a great time. Carvey tells a boatload of stories that’ll leave you jealous, like the times (yep, plural) he hung out with Paul McCartney.
11. FRED ARMISEN (TURNED OUT A PUNK, 2015)
On this ep, host Damian Abraham asks Fred Armisen about his punk-rock roots. SNL comes up a couple times, notably when Abraham gets the story behind the classic History of Punk sketch.
12. TRACY MORGAN (THE ADAM CAROLLA SHOW, 2014)
Two months before Morgan was involved in that tragic bus collision, he appeared on Carolla’s show in good spirits, happily chatting about 30 Rock and his comedy career.
13. CHERI OTERI (KEVIN POLLAK’S CHAT SHOW, 2010)
Pollak’s show has featured a bundle of comedy talent, but SNL fans may be particularly interested in his long talk with Cheri Oteri, since she has kept a fairly low profile in recent years.
14. NORA DUNN (THE DAILY TRAVEL PODCAST, 2015)
If you watched SNL in the ‘80s, you probably remember seeing Dunn in sketches alongside Jan Hooks and Phil Hartman. This podcast sheds light on what she’s been doing lately: traveling the world.
15. JENNY SLATE (GETTING DOUG WITH HIGH, 2013)
Slate was only on SNL for one season, but she made a memorable first impression. Here, she does so again as the very first guest on Doug Benson’s marijuana-infused show.