Storytelling

Neighbors

Jakob Lewis and Nashville Public Radio

+12 FANS
Lean in and get an intimate foray into the lives of your neighbors. "The Heard" podcast collective cofounder Jakob Lewis produces artful stories about the people we pass every day—showing that we have more in common than we might think. From barbers ...Show More
Best
Newest
Looking for recently uploaded episodes
The Hero's Journey

29:53 | Dec 4th, 2018

The town of Harrenheim is mysteriously out of water, yet its reservoir is full. The Heroes’ Guild summons four of its bravest to investigate. These particular heroes are middle schoolers, playing a tabletop roll-playing game at a Nashville community ...Show More
My Grandma's A Spy

28:30 | Nov 21st, 2018

What happens when you want to learn more about your cultural heritage and find out that your grandma was a spy? 80-year-old Sara McCall grew up in Cuba. Now her family is learning just exactly how she came to America. Learn more about how you can te...Show More
Back Home On Short Mountain

26:06 | Nov 7th, 2018

This is a story about a way of life put on trial. Jeffory Young was a beloved farmer and major landowner in scenic Short Mountain, Tennessee. But when police uncovered his major marijuana dealing operation, they seized much of his coveted property. Y...Show More
Dispatches From A Pub In Belfast

01:43 | Oct 23rd, 2018

Jakob is traveling for the next two weeks doing some work for the Goethe-Institut about two of Nashville’s Sister Cities—Belfast, Northern Ireland and Magdeburg, Germany.
The Distressed Comedian

30:13 | Oct 9th, 2018

The story of how Stephen Spinola got to Nashville is not a typical one. The stand-up comedian posted a tweet on the day of Trump’s inauguration that got him in a lot of trouble, so much that death threats started pouring in. Fearing for his life he u...Show More
Before I Could Give Her The Ring

25:52 | Sep 25th, 2018

A story of Jakob’s is turned into poetry courtesy of the podcast Versify. Fighting wildfires is dangerous work. But to a 20 year old Jakob Lewis the work was all fun and games—at first. Jakob tells his story about fighting fire in Redding California ...Show More
Queen Of The Kitchen

17:33 | Sep 11th, 2018

An immigrant restaurateur, Elizabeth Martinez, struggles to make it in America, when the person she came to the U.S. with betrays her. After contemplating suicide and being coaxed out of it by a snuggly pitbull, Elizabeth started her own Honduran res...Show More
Chimes, A Shrine, And a Cabinet Shop: Listener Questions Elicit Surprising Revelations

37:29 | Aug 28th, 2018

Jakob breaks from his usual format to sit down with his editor Mack Linebaugh and answer your questions. You’ll find out why he started the podcast, his favorite episode, and what’s up with those windchimes. Also Jakob calls back one question asker w...Show More
The Dog Trap, Part 2

35:55 | Aug 14th, 2018

Joel Rice got the opportunity to ghost-write the memoir of one of his childhood heroes—skateboarding legend Christian Hosoi. But Joel’s experience was an unpleasant one that brought up an old childhood trauma at a skatepark. In this episode, I call C...Show More
The Dog Trap, Part 1

35:16 | Aug 7th, 2018

What happens to someone when the thing they love most in the world — skateboarding— is also the source of their greatest wound? When Joel Rice, a naturally bookish kid was younger he wanted nothing more than to be a pro skater like his heroes, Christ...Show More
Bonus: Miso And Dejan React

10:29 | May 22nd, 2018

Jakob gets a rare chance to hear what his guests think of how they're portrayed as Miso and Dejan, the subjects of “Miso’s Brother”, have a drink and reflect on hearing their story. Also we pull some tape off the cutting room, and a sad farewell to o...Show More
Red State Mama

24:44 | May 8th, 2018

Marlo Mack has a young transgender daughter. She met another woman named Debi Jackson who has a very similar parenting story to her own, the only difference is where they live. Marlo lives in a liberal community where she and her transgender daughter...Show More
Our Father

20:02 | Apr 24th, 2018

Jakob issues himself a challenge to redo the first story he ever made, about Anglican priest Father Thomas McKenzie and his dad. The title of Father can come with some pretty weird and difficult territory—counseling people through tough times, perfor...Show More
Miso's Brother

22:37 | Apr 12th, 2018

Miso and Dejan are Bosnian refugees who met as children when they were both resettled in the same apartment complex in Nashville, Tenn. After they each turned 30 they made a pilgrimage all the way back to Bosnia to visit the grave of Miso’s younger b...Show More
The Baker's Son

21:33 | Mar 27th, 2018

Sam Tucker is a passionate baker who doesn’t like to compromise on ingredients, but one of them contains a tiny little protein known as gluten, and it’s proven to be a tyrannical ruler of their lives. Hear how Sam and his family fight back and still ...Show More
The Sister's Gift

16:36 | Mar 13th, 2018

When Katie Cooley found out her brother needed a kidney transplant, she volunteered without hesitation—despite not being super close to him. Hear just how her gesture affected their relationship. Credits and Notes: The show is edited by Emily Siner...Show More
Matt Got Shot: Part 3 or The Fabric We're All In

23:56 | Feb 27th, 2018

In the final chapter of the Neighbors mini-series “Matt Got Shot,” we visit Jodi Hays,  the woman whose security camera captured the footage of Matt’s terrifying assault. Jodi is an abstract artist—captivated by the image of the moment Matt was shot ...Show More
Matt Got Shot: Part 2

18:47 | Feb 13th, 2018

In Part 2 of the Neighbors mini-series “Matt Got Shot,” we explore the reality of the trauma of getting shot: first to Matt’s body, then his identity and finally to his mind. Matt says, “PTSD doesn’t show up with a name tag.” He was in the recordin...Show More
Matt Got Shot: Part 1

21:41 | Jan 30th, 2018

It was inauguration day 2017 when Nashville singer-songwriter Matt Lovell was ambushed while sitting in his car — and then shot in the chest. A doorman at a nearby bar miraculously saved his life, setting in motion a series of life-changing events. I...Show More
The Manifestor

17:28 | Jan 16th, 2018

Everyone seems inspired by fitness instructor Katherine Tisha Wilson. People describe going to her class as "going to church." Her fierceness comes at you instantly from the front of the class, but this high school dropout wasn't always confident in ...Show More
Season 5 trailer (launches January 16th)

00:59 | Jan 11th, 2018

Hello. I’m Jakob Lewis and Neighbors….is back. January 16th. I’m on a quest to make sense of the human experience through the lives of my neighbors. There’s something magical about getting an intimate pass into someone’s world and hearing about the ...Show More
The Language Learner

15:21 | Sep 19th, 2017

As Myanmar aka Burma is going through a humanitarian crisis Neighbors brings an update to the story of a man who fled the region to come to America with his family. We meet Gin Thawng. The 66-year old man lives in a Nashville apartment with his ailin...Show More
The Tuba Man

16:37 | Sep 6th, 2017

It's an odd scene: A man, playing a sousaphone, stands inside a tunnel on a busy Nashville road during rush hour. Is he crazy, divinely inspired or something else entirely? In this episode of Neighbors, we go inside the world of "tuba man" Joe Hunter...Show More
The Digger

19:04 | Aug 15th, 2017

Whit Hill digs up items she finds with a metal detector — Civil War bullets, forgotten toys, old coins. Her treasures, and the songs she writes about them, remind her that there’s always the possibility of wonder in the ground beneath her feet. This...Show More
Shine Service

16:46 | Aug 1st, 2017

Robert Person Sr. — Percy, as he’s known — has been shining shoes for 70 years. He started around age 10 and now, at 80, continues to work at Percy’s Shoe Shine Service in Nashville. He’s worn out, stressed out, but this veteran shoe shiner just can’...Show More
Childhood's End

13:19 | Jul 18th, 2017

Prepare to be embedded into a gaggle of neighborhood kids, playing at the peak of summer. Producer Erica Heilman from the always-delightful podcast Rumblestrip brings us the story of children holding on to the last gasps of youth. The shows editors ...Show More
The Fighter

15:38 | Jul 4th, 2017

Wayne cherishes his independence. And having had ALS for 33 years, he has to fight for it everyday. But his disease is only one of the seemingly insurmountable challenges he’s faced. Credits: Edited by Emily Siner, Mack Linebaugh and Anita Bugg. Pro...Show More
The Role of a Lifetime

20:34 | Jun 20th, 2017

When Denice Hicks has to step unexpectedly into the role of King Lear, in some ways, she’s doing what she’s always done: living life like it’s her last day. What happens when you do that everyday over the course of a life?   Credits: Edited by Emily...Show More
The Party Planners

19:38 | May 30th, 2017

Eddie and Mary Helen live in Chattanooga, Tenn. — a city, like many in the country, that still feels the effects of segregation. They started examining their hometown through the lens of race and ended up throwing a party. Credits: Edited by Emily S...Show More
Dave, The Weather Nut

18:05 | May 16th, 2017

Dave Hayes is a “social media-rologist”. He has no meteorology degree, but posts dense and poetic weather updates on Facebook where he’s grown quite a following. Hear how one man uses his computer to bring Western Massachusetts together and protect t...Show More
The Funeral Director

17:19 | May 2nd, 2017

Bethany embalmed bodies for a living, but she couldn’t help but empathize with every corpse she worked on, seeing her job as one final gift—one that was taking its toll. It turns out, some professions require a certain detachment. Edited by Emily Si...Show More
Every Breath Is Precious

22:07 | Apr 18th, 2017

Hannah has a rare genetic disorder that causes her to stop breathing when she goes to sleep. She wears a ventilator at night. How does having to constantly monitor a basic human function change how Hannah and her family approach life?     Music ...Show More
The Oregon Trailblazer

25:05 | Apr 4th, 2017

In 2011, Rinker Buck crossed the Oregon Trail — yes, that Oregon Trail — in a covered wagon pulled by a team of mules. He traveled with his brother Nick and a Jack Russell Terrier named Olive Oyl. The journey forced Rinker to confront his greatest fe...Show More
Season 4 Starts April 4, New Episode Every Two Weeks

01:08 | Mar 31st, 2017

Hey Everyone, a new season of Neighbors starts Tuesday April 4th. Tell your friends, tell your family, the party starts Tuesday.    www.podcasts.wpln.org
A Musical Recovery

21:52 | Dec 27th, 2016

The season 3 finale is a little different. It is a personal story of Jakob’s told by taking a musical journey all around Nashville. Together, you will experience an Irish session, an Indian jam in a Mexican restaurant, a Jewish musical Shabbat, Beer ...Show More
The Ordinary Radicals

19:51 | Dec 8th, 2016

In 1969, Leroy and Gloria Griffith got married in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It would have been an ordinary event, except that they are believed to be the first interracial couple to legally wed in the county. We hear the story of why they opened up the...Show More
The High Five Revisted

17:12 | Nov 22nd, 2016

Two men walk over a mile once a week just to give each other a high five. It's a seemingly meaningless act, but one that can take on a powerful meaning over time. We examine why they do this and check back in with one of them a year later. Editors: ...Show More
Barbershop Duet, Part Two - Stephen

17:04 | Nov 11th, 2016

Like part one, this is a story of a barber who followed an unlikely path to the grooming profession. Stephen Mason's journey took him from 20 years on the road, playing guitar in a Grammy-winning Christian rock band, to a one-chair, one-man barbersho...Show More
Barbershop Duet, Part One - Ronnie

22:53 | Oct 21st, 2016

Ronnie Clardy grew up near the barbershop he owns in Nashville, but the path that led him to his current life is anything but short and straight. He started dealing drugs at 13 and relapsed into a life of crime and prison several times, before he fin...Show More
The Grave of Rosa Mary Dean

21:35 | Sep 9th, 2016

On a rainy night in 1949, a young woman arrived by train in Franklin, Tennessee, and walked off into the night. The next morning, her body was found near an incinerator by the high school. Her throat had been cut. The murder has become a fixture of t...Show More
Honoring Wishes

17:59 | Aug 4th, 2016

We want to do right by the people we care about. But sometimes, honoring someone's wishes can put us at odds with social norms, our own values, or even the law. In this episode of Neighbors, three stories where the desire to honor wishes pushes us in...Show More
The Fence Jumper

14:34 | Jul 7th, 2016

Most people might think it’s not worth the trouble to intervene in someone else's life. But in this episode of Neighbors, we get to know a woman who sees that obstacle—and will do everything she can to jump over it. Photo provided by Beth Mathews ...Show More
The Genius Improviser

18:43 | May 19th, 2016

Michael Kearney is a genius — he holds the Guinness World Record for being the youngest person to graduate from college, at age 10. Now he's 32, and he's not curing cancer or solving world hunger. He's running an improv comedy company in Nashville. W...Show More
The Language Learner

14:37 | Apr 22nd, 2016

We meet Gin Thawng. The 66-year old is a refugee from Burma living in a Nashville apartment with his ailing wife, a baby grandson, his daughter-in-law and son. A graduate of an innovative ESL program-on-wheels, Thawng shows us something about the pow...Show More
This is Not a Love Song

25:25 | Mar 29th, 2016

What keeps you up at night? For some, it's the shape-shifting song of a mockingbird outside the bedroom window. It turns out, not everyone is amazed by this bird's musical feats. What is a wonder of nature to some, to others is the sound of torture. ...Show More
The Tuba Man

17:08 | Mar 15th, 2016

It's an odd scene: A man, playing a sousaphone, stands inside a tunnel on a busy Nashville road during rush hour. Is he crazy, divinely inspired or something else entirely? In this episode of Neighbors, we go inside the world of "tuba man" Joe Hunter...Show More
The Baker's Son

25:20 | Mar 1st, 2016

Sam Tucker is a gifted baker, but the one thing that is his greatest passion just might put his family in danger. With the premiere of Season 3, I am thrilled to announce Neighbors' partnership with Nashville Public Radio.    Some music by: Podington...Show More
Grinching

03:46 | Dec 24th, 2015

This is a small bonus story about how the Christmas tree from your curb disappeared.
The Fool

17:44 | Dec 17th, 2015

A story of how one clown turns his sorrow into connection. Some music by Podington Bear Editors: Tally Abecassis and Rob McGinley Meyers Production Help: Bailey Robbins Sponsors: Yazoo Brewing Company www.yazoobrew.com Baja Burrito Neighbors is a par...Show More
The High Five

13:36 | Oct 16th, 2015

Why do two grown men walk a mile and a half every week, rain or shine, to give each other a high five? Editors: Bailey Robbins, Rob McGinley Meyers, Tally Abecassis Music: Podington Bear and Dan Burns AKA Dop Shrah Sponsors: Yazoo Brewing Company an...Show More
These Things Is Miracles

19:05 | Sep 10th, 2015

Today we feature a story from the podcast Anxious Machine called "These Things Is Miracles." What happens when a woman refuses to admit she can't hear, and what happens when she finally does? Music in this episode: Seaside by Jelsonic Other music i...Show More
Sans Houses - Going To Church

13:15 | Aug 13th, 2015

"I guess they can't go to no church or whatever and ask to lick their preacher's armpits...so they come around the mission." Two stories of people going to church for two very different reasons. Do you have a going to church story? Tell it to us at...Show More
At Home In Music City

20:05 | Jul 31st, 2015

It’s an unwritten rule in Nashville. If you see a famous musician who lives in town, you let them be. Your heart might skip a beat when you see Robert Plant, Jack White, Emmylou Harris or whoever it is for you, but you let them be. “Music City” has a...Show More
Sans Houses - Music

11:38 | Jul 9th, 2015

Our newest addition to our Sans Houses series has the theme of music. Producer Tasha A F Lemley takes us along to glimpse into the lives of three men living on the street. You'll hear beautiful, funny, and tragic moments from our homeless neighbors i...Show More
Highbrow Lowbrow

24:33 | Jun 26th, 2015

Find out the meaning behind the words highbrow and lowbrow through the construct of breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You'll visit a man who is currently homeless and learn how he brews his coffee by the interstate. Enter into the home kitchen of a baris...Show More
Sans Houses - Purpose

07:57 | May 21st, 2015

Since 2006, Neighbors producer Tasha A F Lemley has interviewed men and women who are homeless on the streets of Nashville. We've grouped these interviews by theme in a series called Sans Houses. This episode's theme is "purpose." Listen to Cowboy an...Show More
The Silver Cord: A Year After Bringing Wes Home

19:04 | May 7th, 2015

It's been almost a year since I reported the story "Bringing Wes Home." It was a story about a family losing their son, Wes Vose, in a car crash two-and-a-half years ago. Instead of leaving it to the funeral home to take care of arrangements, they to...Show More
Sans Houses - David

05:22 | Apr 23rd, 2015

This story is the first in a new series called "Sans Houses." After more than 40 years on the street, David has a place to call home. Neighbors photographer and producer Tasha A F Lemley captures David beautifully in both picture and sound.
Quit Playin' Games With My Heart

15:07 | Apr 9th, 2015

Todd Michael Rogers got married young, and it was bad. It was the kind of bad that Todd describes as "Lifetime movie bad." He became unhappy and isolated. It was in that space where he started pouring his energy into creating a one-player card game c...Show More
A Ritual of Hospitality

16:15 | Feb 20th, 2015

This is a story about a ritual. A Chinese tea ceremony. It's used as a means to connect — with the past, with people, with another land. Joshua Drake Wu invited me into his home to experience the joy of Chinese tea. I learned a lot of surprising thin...Show More
I'm Just Trying To Help

21:31 | Jan 17th, 2015

What happens when you try to help someone out, it goes well, but then they end up right back where they started? Jakob channels his inner Sisyphus and goes to the Parthenon to interview strangers about when helping seems futile. Neighbors contributor...Show More
The Pace Of Wonder

10:07 | Dec 5th, 2014

This episode is more of a meditation than a story. When Barclay was 25, he traveled the country in a van. Out under the open sky he bought an astronomy book, looked up, and had his sky stolen from him. He wasn't ready for what he saw. Close your eyes...Show More
Runnin' Down a Dream

25:22 | Oct 22nd, 2014

Bobby Hopkins wakes up one day and decides to change his life. Within two years, he's entering his first 100-mile ultramarathon. I go along as part of his crew to help him along the way. Will Bobby finish? Will I do a good job crewing? Also, a specia...Show More
Lost and Found - Neighbors Live

34:19 | Sep 25th, 2014

Neighbors is once again live from my backyard. 10 storytellers poured their hearts out. 5 of them are featured in this episode. In this episode: Blake Farmer, reporter at WPLN in Nashville, tells a story of being a rockstar in the Philippines. Hal Hu...Show More
Bringing Wes Home

14:55 | Jul 20th, 2014

After a five-week road trip across beautiful America, I'm back. I'm bringing you a story I did from before I was gone. It's called "Bringing Wes Home": The tale of a family who took their son's body and prepared it themselves. If you've never heard o...Show More
Fear - Neighbors Live

14:48 | Apr 6th, 2014

On March 22, 2014, I held Neighbors Live! in my backyard. It was a very neighborly time. Neighbors favorite Thomas McKenzie told a story that will blow you away.
Taking On Water

12:41 | Mar 26th, 2014

If you live in Nashville you've probably heard a lot of flood stories from the May 2010 flood. This one stood out to me as a true example of neighbors being neighbors. Jeff Jones the owner of the local Dairy King shares his story about surviving the ...Show More