Politics of Truth

Hosted by Bob Crawford of The Avett Brothers, focuses on politics, music and the path to the 2020 election.

All Episodes
from Politics of Truth

  • Series Finale: Bob Costa and Mark McKinnon

    On this final episode of Politics of Truth we’ll wrap up the 2020 election with two of our favorite returning guests, Washington Post National Political Reporter Bob Costa and Mark McKinnon, a veteran political advisor, former musician, and co-host of Showtime’s The Circus.We try to make some sense of the electoral warfare being waged on the results of the presidential election, and…

  • Episode 25: Doug Heye + Jonathan Karl + Susan King

    This week CNN’s Doug Heye takes over hosting duties for Bob on Politics of Truth. Doug’s first guest is ABC News Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl. Jonathan has covered four presidents and has become a recognizable face in the last few years for his lively barbs with various Trump White House press secretaries. Jonathan shares this inside perspective in his recent best-selling…

  • Episode 24: Pete Rouse

    Bob’s guest this week is Pete Rouse, former Counselor to President Obama and a man whose government experience is so widely respected that he’s known as “the 101st Senator”.  Pete describes how Barack Obama decided to run for President in late 2006, and shares his insider insights on Obama’s leadership style and Presidential legacy.  He also explains…

  • Episode 23: Bob Weir

    This week Bob welcomes back Bob Costa of the Washington Post, and the two of them speak with the legendary Bob Weir, founder and guitarist of the Grateful Dead and many other musical endeavors across five decades.  In this episode Bob Weir explains what he misses most about being on the road performing, and how he…

  • Episode 22: JD Scholten

    Bob’s guest this week is JD Scholten, the Democratic candidate for Congress in Iowa’s 4th district. JD grew up on his family farm near Sioux City and travelled the world as a pro baseball player before taking an unexpected turn into politics in 2018.  Without any political experience JD took on longtime incumbent Steve King, who for 15 years…

  • Episode 21: Chris Shiflett of Foo Fighters

    Bob’s guest this week is Chris Shiflett, the lead guitarist for the Foo Fighters who has multiple solo records including 2019’s “Hard Lessons”. Chris is also a podcasting veteran, having hosted his own show “Walking the Floor” since 2013. In this episode Chris describes how music created his social consciousness as a young kid and how playing music around…

  • Episode 20: Warren Haynes

    Bob’s guest this week is legendary guitarist Warren Haynes of The Allman Brothers, The Dead, and Gov’t Mule. When he became part of the Allmans, Warren had the surreal experience of getting to join his favorite band, and we’ve been fans of his music ever since.  They discuss the Allman Brothers shows Warren played at Madison Square…

  • Episode 19: Ben Jacobs

    Bob’s guest this week is political reporter Ben Jacobs, who’s been doggedly covering Kanye West’s bizarre campaign for president in The Guardian, New York Magazine, and other outlets. Despite having no campaign infrastructure and zero chance of victory, Kanye is paying Republican operatives to get him on state ballots and is skirting FEC deadlines to avoid disclosing…

  • Episode 18: Kendall Marvel

    On this episode Bob speaks with country singer-songwriter Kendell Marvel, who’s written chart-topping hits for Gary Allen, Jamey Johnson, Chris Stapleton and many others. Kendell wrote his first hit song, “Right Where I Need To Be” on the day he moved to Nashville in 1998, and after two decades as a writer and guitarist for big name acts,…

  • Episode 17: Stuart Stevens

    This week Bob speaks with author and political consultant Stuart Stevens, whose brand new book “It Was All A Lie: How the Republican Party Became Donald Trump” explain how the GOP and Trump came to represent each other so completely. Stuart has been an advisor to Republican candidates since the 1980s, culminating with him leading Mitt Romney’s Presidential campaign…

  • Episode 16: Harry Reid

    On this very special episode of Politics of Truth Bob is joined by Bob Costa, National Politics Reporter for the Washington Post and they’re honored to welcome former US Senator Harry Reid of Nevada. Senator Reid served in the Senate for more than 30 years, including his final 8 years in office as the Senate Majority…

  • Episode 15: Campaign Music with Margaret Talev of Axios

    Bob’s guest this week is Margaret Talev, White House and Politics Editor at Axios and a CNN political analyst. Margaret is also a huge music fan who’s paid close attention to the soundtracks of campaigns for as long as she’s been on the trail.  Margaret and Bob discuss which campaigns have harnessed the power of music effectively,…

  • Episode 14: Renee Fleming on Neuroscience and Music

    On this episode Bob speaks with legendary soprano Renée Fleming about her research with the Kennedy Center and NIH exploring the intersection between neuroscience and music, called the Sound Health Initiative.  Renée also explains what she’s up to musically during this time, including a new musical collaboration and conversation with the Kennedy Center, bassist Victor Wooten, and neuroscientist Dr. Daniel Levitin.  Finally, Renée talks…

  • Episode 13: Dr. Peter A. Wish on Connecting with Voters

    This week Bob speaks with Dr. Peter A. Wish, a psychologist who has advised candidates for Congress, Senate, and the Presidency on how to connect with voters.  Dr. Wish’s latest book, “The Candidate’s 7 Deadly Sins”, details the biggest mistakes that candidates make when trying to connect emotionally. He explains the forces that dissuade candidates from being their most authentic selves, and…

  • Episode 12: Chuck Morris

    States have begun relaxing restrictions on a range of outdoor activities as the weather heats up and the Covid case numbers slowly come down in some areas. Regardless of the success of these “Phase 1” reopening plans live concerts, where I earn my living and experience some of my greatest joys, will be among the last things…

  • Episode 11: Mickey Hart and Robert Costa

    This week we’ve got a very special episode for you. Bob is joined once again by Bob Costa, National Political Reporter for The Washington Post, the host of Washington Week on PBS, and a long-time fan of our other guest, Mickey Hart.  Mickey is the legendary drummer and percussionist of the Grateful Dead, as well as countless other musical…

  • Episode 10: Federal Disaster Expert Brent Colburn

    The state-level responses to the coronavirus have shown incredible displays of leadership from some Governors and local officials as they respond to their local circumstances. But when it so clearly feels like the federal government is failing to step up amidst an unprecedented crisis, how can we parse what’s being done for political reasons, and…

  • Episode 9: Langhorne Slim and Chris Frates (CNN and Storyline)

    As the coronavirus crisis continues to keep most Americans isolated at home, it’s struggle to find balance between following the massive, global scale of a pandemic and the deeply personal challenges facing every individual and family. Each new day brings important public health and policy developments that require us all to act together and really come…

  • Episode 8: Can Vote-By-Mail Work?

    This week we zoom in on a subject a lot of folks have been thinking about as we follow the news during lockdown, and that’s vote-by-mail. Even before COVID-19 we were likely to see an increase in absentee ballots in November. But after Wisconsin held their primary amidst a health crisis and social distancing restrictions, the whole country…

  • Episode 7: Marc Brownstein and Robert Costa

    Our focus shifts from the 2020 campaign to the covid-19 crisis that’s reshaping every dimension of Americans’ lives, while reminding voters about the importance of political leadership in uncertain times.First Bob speaks with Robert Costa, National Political Reporter for The Washington Post and host of Washington Week on PBS, about how life as a connected…

  • Episode 6: Mark McKinnon of The Circus

    Several big states held their primaries but the presidential campaign, like the rest of the country, is racing against a public health crisis that’s keeping most Americans indoors. On Politics of Truth we’ll continue to cover the presidential election, however it proceeds from here. But as the coronavirus crisis unfolds we’ll look at how its impacts, from economic…

  • Episode 5: Jake Sherman of Politico

    There’s a lot to discuss this week as coronavirus concerns resonate across the Democratic primary and the country at large. Bob spoke with Jake Sherman, senior writer for POLITICO and co-author with Anna Palmer of “The Hill to Die On: The Battle for Congress and the Future of Trump’s America,” about attempts by both Congress and the…

  • Episode 4: Colin Meloy of The Decemberists, Margaret Talev and Doug Heye

    With Bob on the road this week, we’re joined by two outstanding guest hosts who help us understand how the Democratic primary is consolidating after Super Tuesday—Doug Heye of CNN and The Wall Street Journal and Margaret Talev, Axios’s Politics and White House editor and CNN contributor.  After Doug and Margaret’s Super Tuesday recap you’ll hear…

  • Episode 3: Jon Ralston of The Nevada Independent

    In this week’s episode we look back at Bernie Sanders’ resounding win in the Nevada Caucus, and ahead to this weekend’s pivotal South Carolina Primary. Bob speaks with Jon Ralston, founder of The Nevada Independent and the authority on Nevada politics, about the aftermath of Sanders’ win in Nevada and what it means for the…

  • Episode 2: John Heilemann of The Circus/MSNBC

    On this week’s episode Bob speaks with John Heilemann, the best-selling author of Game Change, co-host of Showtime’s The Circus, MSNBC contributor, founder/editor-in-chief at The Recount, and former staff writer for Wired and New York Magazine. Bob and John discuss where the Democratic primary race stands with Iowa and New Hampshire in the books, and assess the state of the top contenders’…

  • Episode 1: Bob Costa of The Washington Post

    On the first episode of “Politics of Truth”, Bob speaks with Washington Post National Political Reporter Bob Costa about the Iowa Caucuses and the aftermath of the vote reporting disaster. They discuss what complications in Iowa mean for the race as the candidates move on to New Hampshire, and whether the Iowa Caucus can survive intact…

  • Trailer: The Politics of Truth

    The Politics of Truth, hosted by Bob Crawford of The Avett Brothers, is a show focused on the intersection of politics, music and activism. In interviews with prominent journalists and politically-minded musicians, Bob aims to educate and empower listeners at this important time leading up to the 2020 election. Episode 1 premieres Friday, February 7.…