What is Bandwagon?

Bandwagon is a new narrative podcast that tells stories about the people who give momentum to growing fan bases. Each season will delve into a different type of bandwagon – a sports team no one thought was worth anything trying to change the hearts and minds of a town. A band on tour trying to make it big. 

This is a show about being a part of something larger than yourself. Welcome aboard. 

So...what about Season 1?

Season 1 will explore a bandwagon that has taken the nation by storm – The Bernie Sanders campaign. Bernie’s a longtime senator from Vermont. He’s always been known to be a progressive voice. But he’s from a state with the most cows per capita. So nationally he’s had a somewhat limited reach. But after announcing a presidential bid he transformed rapidly from huffy Vermont Senator to the leader of a political revolution. And now he’s overfilling arenas coast-to-coast. 

Bernie might not win the nomination. Or maybe he will. You might agree with his politics. Or maybe you don’t. Disclaimer: I do agree with most of his politics. But this show is not about those things. That’s not the point. The point is that he’s gone from unknown to everywhere. He’s created a bandwagon and struck a major chord with the American people. So Bandwagon want to know – who are these people? What are their stories?


It doesn’t matter our age, we all define ourselves by how we choose to associate – from being a deadhead or a Red Sox fan to being an environmentalist – these things mean something about who we are as people. Participating in these communities, these bandwagons, satisfies a craving: the need to feel like we’re a part of something – like we belong. I’m fascinated by this phenomenon. And being a radio producer, the next logical step was to make a podcast about it. So...here we are.


The season will continue until March 1st, 2016 - that's Super Tuesday, the day on which the most states hold their primary elections. No one knows how well or poorly Bernie will be doing at that point – and it doesn't matter. The idea is to follow the trajectory of his campaign through stories about his followers. 

About The Creator:

In addition to hosting and producing Bandwagon, Josh Swartz works in public radio utopia at the Public Radio Exchange (PRX) as an in-house producer and curator of PRX Remix, a never-ending stream of the best radio storytelling. His work has aired on various stations and been featured on Transom.org. He's a member of AIR Media. You can find more of his work at joshswartz.com.

Josh is a graduate of the Transom Story Workshop and studied film and sociology at Middlebury College. He lives in Providence, Rhode Island and originally hails from Brookline, MA.


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New York, NY 10010

All images in this template are used with permission from the photographers Linn BergbrandtJulia LindemalmRut Sigurdardottir and Anna Wahlgren