Who watches “live” TV anymore? There are many days in a row where I don’t even turn on my TV, and the days I do turn it on, I rarely watch what the networks and cable channels spoon feed me.
The variety and creativity provided by independent content creators on DIY platforms like YouTube is astounding. Many of these channels garner millions of views, yet they would never make it in the door of the networks.
Here are some of my personal favorites (in no particular order), with a selection of embeds for your delectation. What are your favorites? What topics do you like to explore?
- BigJetTV – live commentary of aircraft movements around the world. Basically, planespotting on steroids. The host (i.e. “presenter” in Britspeak), Jerry Dyer, has a family background in aviation, but is not so inured to it that his presentation is inaccessible to average viewers. Some dramatic moments have been captured live over the course of their existence. The devastation of the aviation industry has hampered their efforts a little bit, but they have made up for the downturn in commercial flying with a lot more military-focused shows.
- Erik Grankvist – young Swedish man building a cabin off-grid. Similar to the classic documentary “Alone in the Wilderness”, but a bit more in-depth, and with a bit more modern technology. Watch his progress on the cabin, which he mostly is building on his own with occasional help from friends & family. Also features a cute Cavalier Spaniel, and just recently a German Shorthaired Pointer named Barr. If you enjoy nature ASMR, you will love this – there is rarely any talking.
- Frederick Dunn – backyard hobbyist beekeeper, with a focus on observation and testing. Fred is constantly experimenting with new equipment and new methodologies. For example, he’ll put out several water drinkers with different additive treatments such as spirulina or commercial bee-health products, and see which the bees like best. He also does an extensive Friday Q&A (which is why I’m often late to the Glibzooms on Fridays).
- Baumgartner Restoration – in depth-look at art restoration, mainly with oil-on-canvas paintings, but sometimes other stuff thrown in like wood sculpture. If you like art, this is for you. If you like “before-and-after”, this is for you. If you like DIY design & engineering, this is for you. If you like woodworking & carpentry, this is for you. The nerd factor is off the chain here.
- Black Opal Direct – Aussie from the Lightning Ridge area explains opals and cuts them. He does livestreams every other week, as well pre-recorded videos. You can see some spectacular gems on this channel, and you can buy them, too! So far I have resisted the temptation to make a purchase, but I do have a big birthday coming up…The embed I selected was one I watched live as it happened. Spectacular.
- Doggy Daycare Farm Trips – Another Aussie. This is a farm for doggy daycare, started by a retired Aussie military officer. It’s just dogs, dogs, dogs. They post every weekday, too, so you can get your cuteness fix every morning.
- Ran Out on a Rail – young man travels all over North America on trains. And not in the legal sense. His videos in Mexico are fascinating and full of spectacular scenery. He also includes lots of useful (and nerdy) information on RR crossings, tunnels, and the towns he passes through.
- Smoke n’ Scan – livestream guy in Los Angeles smokes weed, listens to police scanners, and follows live police chases. This channel has absolutely no educational value whatsoever. It’s just 100% pure craziness and fun. Very reminiscent of drive-time radio with risque talk and lots of cheesy sound effects. Of course, police chases are random and some don’t last very long, but when the stars align just right, this channel is a hoot.
- Yoel & Mari – one Cuban man and one Cuban-American woman and their lives in the U.S. Yoel recently immigrated here from Cuba on a K1 visa. Their videos show him experiencing America for the first time. Poignant and funny. They often do live Q&As, but the best are their “Cuban eating [ fast food ] for the first time”. I kind of love how much weight he’s gained since moving here. Get your anti-commie fix here.
- Cecilia Blomdahl – Swedish young lady lives on Svalbard. Lots of clips of daily life in the Arctic. She talks about buying groceries, going out for dinner, weekend escapes, even laundry and bathing. Beautiful scenery and editing, and Cecilia has a great knowledge of the history and inner-workings of this former mining colony. Interesting tidbits about Svalbard – you don’t need a visa and guns are mandatory.
Hope some of these pique your interest! Let us know what you like to watch!