Page last updated at 06:35 GMT, Tuesday, 19 July 2005 07:35 UK

Pick of the podcasts: Hometown Tales

By Darren Waters
BBC News entertainment reporter

Podcasting is being tipped as the next big thing in radio. There are thousands of different podcasts made by ordinary people around the globe that can be downloaded onto a PC and transferred to an MP3 player.

Apple has introduced podcast downloads into its popular iTunes music store and media giants such as CBS, ABC and the BBC are now offering a number of radio programmes in podcast form.

Here are six amateur podcasts which are worth listening to.


Richard Vobes

Coverville

Mommycast

Mr X and Julie

Jawbone

Picture courtesy of Len, Jawbone radio
Hometown Tales


HOMETOWN TALES

WHO MAKES THE PODCAST?

Gene Fitzpatrick and Bryan Minogue are two friends who make a series of low-budget documentaries about the weird, the wonderful and the outright unbelievable that takes place in small towns across the United States.

The podcast, which grew out of their film-making, is a weekly 45-minute programme which focuses on historical oddities and bizarre news stories from towns all over the country.

Mr Fitzpatrick said: "Once podcasting came along it was a natural transition. So we just started it and still continue the TV show."

WHAT IS THE PODCAST ABOUT?

"We're uncovering the history, folklore, legends and all unique things that make a town what it is," says the website.

Mr Fitzpatrick said: "We generally start with strange news from the week. There's always a ghost story, UFO sighting, image of Jesus in a tortilla or something bizarre that's an interesting "tale" then those stories usually segue into other legends, folklore or historic oddities in other places.

"We always say 'every town has a tale' and we are trying to tell them.

"We now receive a ton of listener mail. Everyone has a good tale from where they live, maybe a unique sandwich, a ghost story, a lake monster or something that makes their town unique. So we feature them as well."

In the latest podcast the pair relate the story of Oak Island in Nova Scotia, a "legendary treasure island" which has been put up for sale by its owners after they decided they would never find the loot reputed to have been buried there.

Mr Fitzpatrick said: "The listenership that we've gotten has always been astonishing. The technology has really enabled us to reach areas of the world that we would have never been able to do.

"It's also fun to make our podcast. We have no 'station manager' or 'programme director' to answer to."



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