Ok, so for most of you, Once Upon a Crime is not new to you, and personally, it was one of the first true crime podcasts I ever discovered three years ago. It is iconic, and we were honored to chat with the legendary Esther Ludlow about Once Upon a Crime, and her newer podcast, Let’s Taco ‘Bout True Crime. If you are new to Once Upon a Crime, one of the things we love about it is how well researched it is, and you really get to know the ins and outs of a story. Be sure to check out our full YouTube interview with Esther below!
What inspired you to start your podcast?
I’ve always been interested in true crime and started reading true crime books in high school. I became a fan of podcasts around 2009-10. I always thought it would be fun to start a podcast and since I knew about so many true crime cases I believed I could talk about that more than anything else. I started a short-lived podcast in 2012 just to learn to podcast (there were no schools of podcasting at that time, I just had to “figure it out”). It was fun and so, I decided to launch a true crime podcast “when I had time”. That didn’t happen until about 2015/16 so I started preparing to launch with three episodes. I finally released the first series “Lost and Found” about people who were kidnapped and then found years later in June of 2016. Within the first month I had over 75k downloads. I’d met Justin from Generation Why that year and he mentioned my podcast on his already very popular true crime podcast. After that, the listenership kept growing and a little over a year later, Once Upon a Crime became my full-time job (after I started booking sponsors).
Now, I’ve been podcasting for almost 4 years, over 165 episodes and closing in on 20 million downloads.
What got you interested in true crime? Was there a murder in your hometown? A story that has always haunted you?
I picked up Ann Rule’s book The Stranger Beside Me about Ted Bundy when I was a teenager. I loved the way she didn’t just write about the crime, but also the backgrounds of the victims and the perpetrator. I always wanted to know the “why” behind the bad things that happen. I was hooked on true crime books since then!
What’s a murder, disappearance, or crime story that keeps you up at night?
Nothing really keeps me up (haha), but I’d love to have proof of who killed Jon Benet Ramsey and who was involved in covering it up.
What true crime podcasts are you listening to right now? If podcasts aren’t your thing, we would also love to hear about a spooky book you’re reading or your favorite murder-related tv show!
I’ve been a fan of The Generation Why Podcast for years – my first true crime podcast binge. I also love Dark Topic – two very different styles of true crime podcast, but both so well done!
How can our readers find and support you?
Our website is http://www.truecrimepodcast.com and you can follow me on Twitter @uponacrime and on Facebook and Instagram @onceuponacrimepod.