Fresh Air

Fresh Air

By NPR

Fresh Air from WHYY, the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues, is one of public radio's most popular programs. Hosted by Terry Gross, the show features intimate conversations with today's biggest luminaries.

Subscribe to Fresh Air Plus! You'll be supporting the unique show you can't get enough of - and you can listen sponsor-free. Learn more at plus.npr.org/freshair

Episodes

Best Of: Novelist Mat Johnson / Comic Joel Kim Booster

Mat Johnson's new satirical novel, Invisible Things, is set in the future, on a moon of Jupiter, in an artificial ecosystem designed to replicate life on Earth. We talk about writing satire in our current political climate, mass denialism in America, and being a caretaker of his late mother.Nick Quah reviews new podcasts that are directly inspired by reality TV's mechanics and style.Comic Joel Kim Booster speaks with guest interviewer Sam Sanders about his new film Fire Island (which he wrote and stars in). Inspired by Pride and Prejudice, it's a rom-com about a group of gay friends and explores racism and classism in their community.
02/07/2248m 29s

The World Of Film Noir

Eddie Muller hosts the TCM series Noir Alley. An expanded edition of his book, Dark City, chronicles film noir from the '40s and '50s. We talk about the femme fatale, the sexiness of the genre, and why film noir flourished in the post-WWII era.Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews the album Nuna by pianist David Virelles.
01/07/2243m 49s

Investigating The Far-Right Militia Groups Of Jan. 6

New York Times journalist Alan Feuer says some members of Trump's inner circle have close ties to the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers, whose leaders have been charged with seditious conspiracy.
30/06/2244m 43s

Novelist Mat Johnson

Mat Johnson's new satirical novel, Invisible Things, is set in the future, on a moon of Jupiter, in an artificial ecosystem designed to replicate life on Earth. We talk about writing satire in our current political climate, mass denialism in America, and being a caretaker of his late mother.
29/06/2255m 27s

Novelist John Vercher On MMA Fighting, Memory Loss & Identity

Writer John Vercher trained in mixed martial arts as a young man. His novel, After the Lights Go Out, centers on a veteran MMA fighter who is experiencing memory loss, severe mood swings and tinnitus. The book is also about the fighter's biracial identity. Also, Nick Quah reviews new podcasts that are directly inspired by reality TV's mechanics and style.
28/06/2245m 50s

Joel Kim Booster On 'Fire Island'

Comic Joel Kim Booster speaks with guest interviewer Sam Sanders about his new film Fire Island (which he wrote and stars in). Inspired by Pride and Prejudice, it's a rom-com about a group of gay friends and explores racism and classism in their community. Booster also talks about his Netflix stand-up special Psychosexual and growing up Asian with white, evangelical Christian parents. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Lapvona by Ottessa Moshfegh.
27/06/2246m 10s

Best Of: The Sensory World Of Animals / Mothering As Social Change

We explore the hidden world around us — the sights, smells, tastes, sounds, and vibrations that are imperceptible to humans, but are perceived by various animals and insects. We talk with science writer Ed Yong about his new book An Immense World.Justin Chang reviews two films from the Sundance Film festival — now streaming — about relationships between a younger man and an older woman, Cha Cha Real Smooth and Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.Also, we hear from Angela Garbes, author of the new book Essential Labor. She wrote it after having to give up work during the pandemic lockdown, when she no longer had daycare. She says, raising children shouldn't be as lonely, bankrupting and exhausting as it is.
25/06/2247m 16s

A Former Flight Attendant Shares Stories From The Sky

T.J. Newman's book, Falling, is a thriller about a hijacking on a commercial flight. The pilot is told he must crash the plane or his family on the ground will be killed. We talk with Newman about her book and about her 10 years in the skies — from pet peeves to scary situations. Justin Chang reviews Elvis, the latest spectacle from Baz Luhrmann.
24/06/2245m 48s

Where The Anti-Abortion Movement Is Heading

How did we get to the point where Roe v. Wade is likely to be overturned, just as we approach its 50 anniversary? We talk with law professor Mary Ziegler. She's written several books about the abortion wars. Her new one, Dollars for Life, is about how the anti-abortion movement helped push the courts to the right, and upended the GOP establishment.
23/06/2243m 51s

The Sensory World Of Animals

There's a vast world around us that animals can perceive — but humans can't. Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Ed Yong talks about some of the sights, smells, sounds and vibrations that other living creatures experience. His book is An Immense World.
22/06/2244m 55s

Rethinking The 'Essential Labor' Of Raising Children

In her book, author Angela Garbes makes the case that the work of raising children has always been undervalued and undercompensated in the U.S. Then came the pandemic, and everything got harder. We talk about how parents​ in the U.S.​ are often isolated, and left without a social safety net, and we contrast that to how domestic labor is handled in the Philippines.
21/06/2245m 26s

Banjo Player Rhiannon Giddens Sings Slave Narratives

Giddens' album Freedom Highway is an exploration of Black experiences, accompanied by an instrument with its own uniquely African American story: the banjo. Originally broadcast May 11, 2017.Ken Tucker reviews three new country songs.
20/06/2246m 36s

Best Of: News Anchor Katy Tur / Linda Villarosa On Racism & Healthcare

Katy Tur's parents ran a helicopter news service in LA in the '80s and '90s. While she loved the rush of flight, her family dynamic was a volatile one. We talk about her unusual childhood and her early career in journalism. She's now an anchor for MSNBC and a correspondent for NBC News. Tur's memoir is Rough Draft.1619 Project journalist Linda Villarosa says bias in the healthcare system and the "weathering" affect of living in a racist society are taking a serious toll on Black people in America. Her new book is Under the Skin.
18/06/2248m 46s

The History Of Juneteenth / Remembering Philip Baker Hall

Juneteenth, formerly Emancipation Day or Jubilee, celebrates the day slavery ended in Texas, June 19, 1865. Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed studies the early American republic and the legacy of slavery. "It was a very, very tense time — hope and at the same time, hostility," Gordon-Reed says. Her book is On Juneteenth.Also, we remember actor Philip Baker Hall, who died June 12. He appeared in the Paul Thomas Anderson films Boogie Nights and Magnolia. He also played a cop on the trail of overdue library books on Seinfeld. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2006. Justin Chang reviews two films streaming now: Good Luck to You, Leo Grande and Cha Cha Real Smooth.
17/06/2244m 59s

How Phones Are Mining Data On Kids (And All Of Us)

Washington Post tech writer Geoffrey Fowler says that apps are collecting data on kids on a massive scale — despite a law that was designed to prevent that. Fowler explains the loophole in the law that apps are using, and ways that the system can and should be changed. We'll also talk about medical data collection, terms of service, and what "ask app not to track" really means.
16/06/2244m 45s

Searching For The Source Of The Nile

Writer Candice Millard chronicles the arduous journey of two 19th century explorers through East Africa, where they battled heat, insects, and diseases that at times rendered one or the other deaf, blind or paralyzed. After discovering the sprawling lake that feeds the world's longest river, the two fell into a bitter public dispute over their discoveries. Too little credit went to the formerly-enslaved African who guided them and other explorers of the age. Millard's new book is River of the Gods: Genius, Courage and Betrayal in the Search for the Source of the Nile.David Bianculli reviews The Old Man, a new FX series starring Jeff Bridges.
15/06/2245m 34s

The Hidden Toll Of Racism On Health

1619 Project journalist Linda Villarosa says bias in the healthcare system and the "weathering" affect of living in a racist society are taking a serious toll on Black people in America. Her new book is Under the Skin.Maureen Corrigan reviews Greenland, a debut novel by David Santos Donaldson.
14/06/2245m 46s

MSNBC Anchor Katy Tur

Tur's parents ran a helicopter news service in LA in the '80s and '90s. While she loved the rush of flight, her family dynamic was a volatile one. We talk about her unusual childhood and her early career in journalism. Tur's memoir is Rough Draft.
13/06/2246m 38s

Best Of: Comic Sam Jay / Coach Dawn Staley

On her HBO show, PAUSE with Sam Jay, SNL alum Sam Jay talks with with friends and fellow comics about topics like queer culture, relationships, and racism in America. She came out in her 20s and much of her comedy is about her relationship with her fiancé, and the life she had prior to coming out. Justin Chang will review the new David Cronenberg thriller, Crimes of the Future. Dawn Staley has won Olympic gold medals as a player and as a head coach. She played in the WNBA, and is now head coach of the South Carolina Gamecocks women's basketball team. In April, she led her team to its second NCAA championship.
11/06/2248m 23s

Julie Andrews

Julie Andrews is this year's recipient of the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award. The star of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music says because of those roles, many of her fans have a certain image of her. "They think I am this very squeaky clean, upper class lady that came from such a family — and it's so far from the truth." She'll tell us about growing up part of a vaudeville family, surviving the blitz during WWII, and we'll hear about why she's no longer physically capable of singing.Also David Bianculli reviews Evil, the latest series by the creators of The Good Wife and The Good Fight on Paramount +.
10/06/2246m 54s

The Jan. 6 Insurrection: Understanding The Big Picture

New York Times Congressional reporter Luke Broadwater says the effort to overturn the 2020 election results was a "sprawling and diffuse" one that involved local governments as well as White House insiders. We'll talk about the investigations by the House Select Committee and the Justice Department, and connect some of the events leading up to the attack.
09/06/2245m 34s

Island Records Founder Chris Blackwell

Blackwell grew up in Jamaica, and, as the head of Island Records, helped launch the careers of reggae stars like Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff, as well as rock bands like U2. His memoir is The Islander. Maureen Corrigan reviews The Facemaker, a nonfiction book by medical historian Lindsey Fitzharris about the plastic surgeon who reconstructed disfigured soldiers in WWI.
08/06/2245m 18s

Comic Sam Jay

On her HBO show, PAUSE with Sam Jay, the SNL alum talks with with friends and fellow comics about topics like queer culture, relationships, and racism in America. Sam Jay came out in her 20s and much of her comedy is about her relationship with her fiancé, and the life she had prior to coming out. We talk about the show, writing "Black Jeopardy" sketches for SNL, and losing her mother when she was a teen.John Powers reviews a new collection of work by the writer Maxine Hong Kingston.
07/06/2245m 49s

Basketball Star Dawn Staley

Dawn Staley has won Olympic gold medals as a player and as a head coach. She played in the WNBA, and is now head coach of the South Carolina Gamecocks women's basketball team. In April, she led her team to its second NCAA championship. We'll talk about how she's seen women's basketball change and grow, and about how she got her start playing basketball with the boys in the projects of North Philly.Later, we'll hear from journalist Neda Toloui-Samnani, author of They Said They Wanted a Revolution: A Memoir of My Parents.And TV critic David Bianculli will review the new HBO series Irma Vep.
06/06/2246m 52s

Best Of: David Sedaris / Political Discord In The White Evangelical Church

Humorist David Sedaris talks about his new collection of personal essays, called Happy-Go-Lucky. This book has some pretty serious writing about his late father, who died a year ago at the age of 98. Throughout Sedaris' life, his father bullied him, and belittled him and his accomplishments. "My father was not a good person, but he was a great character," he says.Ken Tucker reviews Kendrick Lamar's new album Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers. Also, we'll speak with New York Times religion correspondent Ruth Graham about how the issues dividing the Republican party are creating tensions within white evangelical churches across the country. Graham says many pastors are being pressured to resist vaccines and mask mandates, embrace Trump's claims about election fraud and adopt QAnon-based conspiracy theories.
04/06/2247m 54s

Remembering Ray Liotta

Actor Ray Liotta died last week at 67. We'll listen back to Terry's 2016 interview with him. He got his start playing a nice guy on a soap opera. Then came his tough-guy role in Something Wild – and his starring role in Goodfellas. He also played Shoeless Joe Jackson in the film Field of Dreams. Justin Chang reviews the new David Cronenberg thriller Crimes of the Future.
03/06/2245m 31s

Uncovering Abuse In The Southern Baptist Convention

A new report commissioned by the Southern Baptist Convention found that "survivors and others who reported abuse were ignored, disbelieved, or discredited." Even some convicted molesters continued as ministers, without the SBC informing their congregations. The report's bombshell is that the SBC had compiled its own secret list of alleged abusers – and still took no action. This report was commissioned in response to a series of newspaper articles investigating sexual abuse in the Southern Baptist Church. Published in 2019, the series was a team effort by reporters from the Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News. We'll talk with one of the lead reporters, Robert Downen.John Powers will review the new British medical series This is Going to Hurt.
02/06/2245m 12s

Did Jack Welch Break Capitalism?

The legendary GE CEO wowed investors and mingled with celebrities. But New York Times correspondent David Gelles says Welch's aggressive tactics also caused irreparable harm to American industry. His book is The Man Who Broke Capitalism. David Bianculli reviews a Netflix comedy special by the late Norm Macdonald.
01/06/2246m 29s

David Sedaris Returns

"My father was not a good person, but he was a great character," Sedaris says. The humorist writes about his efforts to make peace with his memories of his late father in Happy-Go-Lucky.Also, Ken Tucker reviews Kendrick Lamar's new album, Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers.
31/05/2246m 5s

Country Star Tim McGraw

Country music singers McGraw and Faith Hill star in the Paramount+ series 1883. The show tells the story of a group of Eastern European immigrants trying to make their way in covered wagons from Texas to Oregon. Before they filmed, they attended "cowboy camp," to learn the basics of riding horses and driving wagons. Dave Davies spoke with McGraw about the series, falling in love with Faith Hill, and learning about his birth father, MLB pitcher Tug McGraw.
30/05/2245m 13s

Best Of: Comic Sarah Silverman / Poet Diana Goetsch

As a kid, Sarah Silverman says, the fact that she wet the bed was her "deepest, darkest shame." Decades later, she wrote about the humiliation in her 2010 memoir The Bedwetter — now adapted into a musical. The comic talks with Terry Gross about the songs, cringing at some of her old jokes, and satirizing the Left in I Love You, America.Book critic Maureen Corrigan shares four books for early summer reading. Diana Goetsch grew up in a time when she didn't have the language to help her understand what it meant to be trans. The poet chronicles her later-in-life transition in the memoir This Body I Wore.
28/05/2248m 36s

Angela Lansbury

In June, Lansbury will receive the Tony Award for lifetime achievement. The Murder, She Wrote star previously won Tonys for her performances in Gypsy and Sweeney Todd. She spoke with Terry Gross in 2000.Also, David Bianculli reviews the PBS Great Performances documentary about Stephen Sondheim's Company.
27/05/2246m 23s

How A Disinformation & Harassment Expert Became A Target

Nina Jankowicz was tapped to head the Biden administration's new Disinformation Governance Board but resigned after being deluged with online threats. Her new book is How to Be a Woman Online.
26/05/2243m 53s

Diana Goetsch's Long Journey To Living As A Woman

Diana Goetsch grew up in a time when she didn't have the language to help her understand what it meant to be trans. The poet chronicles her later-in-life transition in the memoir This Body I Wore. "I felt that the universe owed me 50 years as a female living this way," she explains. "That's crazy, but it's this sense that I wanted more life."
25/05/2245m 41s

Comic Sarah Silverman

As a kid, Silverman says, the fact that she wet the bed was her "deepest, darkest shame." Decades later, she wrote about the humiliation in her 2010 memoir The Bedwetter — now adapted into a musical. The comic talks with Terry Gross about the songs, cringing at some of her old jokes, and satirizing the Left in I Love You, America.
24/05/2244m 7s

Novelist Emma Straub

Straub's new novel, This Time Tomorrow, is a time-travel fantasy about a 40-year-old woman who's tending to her ailing father — until, that is, the day she's transported to her childhood home on her 16th birthday. Straub owns the independent bookstore Books Are Magic in Brooklyn. She spoke with contributor Tonya Mosley about pre-grieving, rejection, and what she'd tell her 16-year-old self. Also, Justin Chang reviews Top Gun: Maverick.
23/05/2246m 14s

Best Of: George Floyd's Life / The Queer History Of A Women's Prison

We remember George Floyd as we approach the second anniversary of his murder. We'll speak with Washington Post reporters Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa. They argue that George Floyd's struggles in life reflect the challenges and pressures of institutional racism in the country. Their new book is His Name is George Floyd.Also, we'll hear about the Women's House of Detention, the forgotten women's prison in Greenwich Village that played a role in the gay rights movement of the '60s, including the Stonewall Uprising. Angela Davis and Afeni Shakur, Tupac's mother, were incarcerated there. We'll talk with Hugh Ryan, whose new book is about what this prison tells us about queer history.David Bianculli will review the new HBO documentary George Carlin's American Dream.
21/05/2248m 1s

George Carlin

Carlin was one of the most famous comics to emerge from the '60s counterculture. After it was broadcast on radio, his comic monologue Seven Dirty Words You Can't Say on Television became the focus of an obscenity case that made it all the way to the Supreme Court. Carlin is the subject of a new two-part HBO documentary by Judd Apatow and Michael Bonfiglio. Carlin spoke with Terry Gross in 1990 and 2004. Our TV critic, David Bianculli also reviews the documentary. Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews the reissue of Max Roach's classic 1960 album We Insist! Freedom Now Suite. Last month, it was named to the National Recording Registry.
20/05/2246m 14s

Political Discord In The White Evangelical Church

New York Times journalist Ruth Graham says many pastors are being pressured to resist vaccines and mask mandates, embrace Trump's claims about election fraud and adopt QANON-based conspiracy theories.Maureen Corrigan shares four terrific novels perfect for your early summer reading: This Time Tomorrow by Emma Straub, Search by Michelle Huneven, One-Shot Harry by Gary Phillips, and Knock Off the Hat by Richard Stevenson.
19/05/2244m 54s

How Systemic Racism Shaped George Floyd's Life

As we approach the second anniversary of the murder of George Floyd, two journalists report on the life of the man whose death sparked a massive protest movement and a national conversation about race. Washington Post reporters Robert Samuels and Toluse Olorunnipa drew on hundreds of interviews and countless public and private records to reconstruct the course of Floyd's often-troubled life. A gentle man who sometimes worried that his size intimidated people, George Floyd grew up in poverty, and had big aspirations. But the authors argue his opportunities were limited time and again by the effects of systemic racism. Their new book is His Name Is George Floyd: One Man's Life, and the Struggle for Racial Justice.
18/05/2245m 19s

Frank Bruni On Vision Lost & Found

After experiencing a rare kind of stroke, NYT writer Frank Bruni suddenly became blind in his right eye. Doctors told him there was a decent chance the same could happen to his other eye. It forced him to make a decision: He could focus on what had been lost or on what remained. He chose the latter. Bruni's new memoir is The Beauty of Dusk.
17/05/2245m 29s

The Queer History Of The Women's House Of Detention

In New York City, in the 20th century, tens of thousands of women and transmasculine people were incarcerated at the so-called "House of D." Author Hugh Ryan says that in many cases, the prisoners were charged with crimes related to gender non-conforming behavior. "Drunkenness, waywardism, disobedience to their parents, being out at night by themselves, wearing pants, accepting a date from a man, accepting a ride from a man," Ryan says. "All of these things could have gotten you arrested if you were perceived as the 'wrong kind of woman.'" In his new book, The Women's House of Detention, Ryan writes about the prison, and about the role it played in the gay rights movement of the '60s, including the Stonewall Uprising of 1969.
16/05/2245m 22s

Best Of: Rosie Perez / Stephen Merchant

Rosie Perez was a dancer on Soul Train, the choreographer for "the Fly Girls," the dancers on the sketch comedy show In Living Color, and she did the now-famous dance in the opening credit sequence of Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing. She's now co-starring in the HBO max series The Flight Attendant. We'll talk about her career and how she managed to become so successful after having been raised as a ward of the state in St. Joseph's Catholic Home for Children in New York, and later in foster care.Maureen Corrigan reviews Hernan Diaz's new novel, Trust. Also, we speak with comedian, writer, director and actor Stephen Merchant. With Ricky Gervais, he co-created the British comedy The Office. He has a new comedy thriller series called The Outlaws.
14/05/2248m 32s

Met Opera Star Anthony Roth Costanzo

A decade ago, Costanzo had surgery that threatened to destroy his singing voice. Now he stars as a gender-fluid Egyptian pharaoh in the Met Opera's production of Philip Glass' Akhnaten. He's a countertenor, meaning he sings in a high range that's associated with women's voices. He knows all about the history of countertenors and their predecessors, castrati.Justin Chang reviews the new film Memoria, starring Tilda Swinton, which he calls a "sonic detective story."
13/05/2246m 23s

How Tucker Carlson Conquered Cable

The New York Times did an exhaustive survey of the Fox News hosts' broadcasts. Reporter Nicholas Confessore says Carlson's show is based on ideas that were once "caged in a dark corner of American life." Book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews Trust by Hernan Diaz.
12/05/2245m 48s

Former Attorney General Eric Holder

Holder was America's first Black attorney general when he served in the Obama administration. He has a new book called Our Unfinished March: The Violent Past and Imperiled Future of the Vote.
11/05/2246m 15s

British Comedy Writer & Actor Stephen Merchant

Merchant co-created the British Office and Extras with Ricky Gervais. His new show, The Outlaws, is about people court-ordered to do community service for low-level crimes. He spoke with producer Sam Briger about what inspired the new series, his best writing advice, and how being very tall (6'7") has informed his personality. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a new album from The Clarinet Trio.
10/05/2245m 18s

Rosie Perez

Raised in a convent for abandoned kids, The Flight Attendant co-star used to dream of stability and a loving home. Now that she has it, Perez says, "It's priceless." We talk with Perez about overcoming the trauma of her childhood, how a fight with Spike Lee helped land her breakthrough role in Do the Right Thing, and her brief — but impactful — time dancing on Soul Train.
09/05/2246m 6s

Best Of: Alexander Skarsgård / Comedy Writer Jessi Klein

Swedish actor Alexander Skarsgård describes himself as "quite a mellow guy." Playing a Viking warrior in the film The Northman gave Skarsgård a chance to tap into his animalistic nature. We talk about being a child actor in Sweden, growing up in a bohemian family, and his roles in Big Little Lies and Lady Gaga's "Paparazzi" music video.Ken Tucker reviews Bonnie Raitt's new album, Just Like That... Jessi Klein was the head writer of Inside Amy Schumer and is one of the lead voices in the animated Netflix series Big Mouth. She has a new book of essays about motherhood called I'll Show Myself Out. Klein talks about how having a baby made her feel like a stranger in her own body and life. "There's just no way to comprehend how completely your old identity vanishes," Klein says.
07/05/2248m 44s

'Better Things' Star Pamela Adlon

Adlon is the co-creator, director and star of the FX comedy series Better Things, which ended its fifth and final season last month. The Peabody award-winning series has been heralded as a "masterpiece of unreal realism." Her character, like Adlon herself, is the single mother of three girls, who is also helping her aging mother, and trying to keep her acting career alive. Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews Star Trek: Strange New Worlds and Justin Chang reviews the French film Happening.
06/05/2245m 25s

How The UK Became A Safe-Deposit Box For Russian Oligarchs

We talk with journalist Oliver Bullough about how Russian oligarchs have stashed their wealth and laundered their money in Britain, and how that's helped Putin – and the Russian state – launch its war in Ukraine. There's so much oligarch money in London, it's been nicknamed "Londongrad." Bullough says the UK has developed a system of bankers, lawyers, accountants and PR managers who work to help Russian kleptocrats hide their wealth.
05/05/2244m 29s

Alexander Skarsgård

The Swedish actor describes himself as "quite a mellow guy." Playing a Viking warrior in the film The Northman gave Skarsgård a chance to tap into his animalistic nature. We talk about being a child actor in Sweden, growing up in a bohemian family, and his roles in Big Little Lies, Succession, and Lady Gaga's "Paparazzi" music video. Also, John Powers reviews HBO Max's new drama series The Staircase, inspired by the true crime story and documentary series about the 2001 suspicious death of Kathleen Peterson.
04/05/2245m 14s

How GOP Leaders (Briefly) Turned Against Trump After Jan. 6

In their book, This Will Not Pass, NYT journalists Jonathan Martin and Alexander Burns reveal that GOP leaders, including Rep. Kevin McCarthy and Sen. Mitch McConnell privately discussed removing Trump from office.
03/05/2245m 41s

Stopping Mass Shootings Before They Happen

Mother Jones national affairs editor Mark Follman has studied mass shootings in America for much of the past decade. He says a growing number of mental health experts, educators and law enforcement leaders are engaged in the emerging field of behavioral threat assessment. They study the psychology and behavior of past mass shooters, interviewing many in prison. They then train local personnel to look for those patterns at schools or workplaces, and intervene to get troubled people help before they turn to violence. The approach raises privacy questions, but its advocates believe it's already been effective in preventing tragedies. Follman's new book is Trigger Points: Inside the Mission to Stop Mass Shootings in America.Ken Tucker reviews Bonnie Raitt's new album, Just Like That...
02/05/2245m 20s

Best Of: Tim McGraw / Zain Asher

Country music singers McGraw and Faith Hill star in the Paramount+ series 1883. The show tells the story of a group of Eastern European immigrants trying to make their way in covered wagons from Texas to Oregon. We talk with McGraw about the series and learning about his birth father, MLB pitcher Tug McGraw.When CNN international anchor Zain Asher was 5, her father died in a car accident in Nigeria. Asher's new memoir, Where the Children Take Us, is largely about her mother's remarkable life – surviving poverty, genocide and civil war in Nigeria, then raising four children in a struggling neighborhood in London, and giving them the skills, resilience and determination to be successful in life.
30/04/2248m 17s

The Wonder of the Human Voice

We talk with 'New Yorker' writer John Colapinto, author of This Is the Voice, about how voices work, how they evolved in our prehistoric ancestors, how babies learn to vocalize words of their parents' languages so quickly, and what makes voices sexy or authoritative. Colapinto's own vocal injury led him to explore this subject.Film critic Justin Chang reviews Petite Maman, a new film by Portrait of a Lady on Fire director Céline Sciamma.
29/04/2246m 5s

Moral Panic in the Classroom

Florida officials recently rejected a slew of math textbooks, claiming they included "prohibited topics." NYT journalist Dana Goldstein theorizes the objections related to social-emotional learning. The goal of social-emotional learning is to provide kids with a set of skills that they can draw on when they face challenges later in life, Goldstein explains. But some conservatives see it as something that opens the door to larger discussions about race, gender and sexuality.
28/04/2246m 25s

Comedy Writer Jessi Klein On Motherhood

Klein was the head writer of Inside Amy Schumer and is one of the lead voices in the animated Netflix series Big Mouth. She has a new book of essays about motherhood called I'll Show Myself Out. Klein talks about how having a baby made her feel like a stranger in her own body and life. "There's just no way to comprehend how completely your old identity vanishes," Klein says. TV critic David Bianculli reviews two new shows: Gaslit, about Watergate, and The Offer, about the making of The Godfather.
27/04/2246m 24s

CNN Anchor Zain Asher

When Asher was five, living with her family in London, her mother got a call informing her that her husband and son, who were on a road trip in Nigeria, their ancestral home, had been in a terrible accident. She was told her husband or her son had survived, but the caller didn't know which. That story opens Asher's new memoir, Where the Children Take Us, which is largely about her mother's remarkable life – surviving poverty, genocide and civil war in Nigeria, then raising four children in a struggling neighborhood in London, and giving them the skills, resilience and determination to be successful in life. Asher made it in TV news. Her brother, Chiwetel Ejiofor, is an award-winning actor.Maureen Corrigan reviews Tasha, novelist Brian Morris's memoir about his smart, difficult and funny mother.
26/04/2245m 50s

Michelle Yeoh

When Yeoh first read the script for Everything Everywhere All at Once, she gave a big sigh of relief: Finally, here was a film that put a middle-aged mother in the role of action hero. She spoke with Tonya Mosley about her path from dancer to martial artist to leading lady, as well as joining the boys' club of stunt work. Also, Justin Chang reviews The Northman.
25/04/2245m 36s

Best Of: Comic Jerrod Carmichael / Musician Richard Thompson

Comic, actor and writer Jerrod Carmichael goes deeper into the secrets he reveals in his new HBO comedy special, Rothaniel — secrets about his real name, his family tree, and his sexual orientation. Carmichael's new special is directed by Bo Burnham. A previous one was directed by Spike Lee.Also, songwriter, singer and guitarist Richard Thompson, talks about his formative years. He co-founded the band Fairport Convention, which created a new genre – a hybrid of traditional music of the British isles and rock. His memoir, Beeswing, is out in paperback.
23/04/2248m 27s

Pianist Jeremy Denk

Acclaimed classical pianist Jeremy Denk's new memoir begins with his first piano lessons and ends with his last formal lesson when he was 26. He'll talk about the obsessive practicing and repetition that's essential to reach his level of proficiency, and what he's learned about technique and conveying emotion. We'll also hear music from his new album.John Powers reviews the new CNN documentary Navalny, about the Russian dissident who survived a murder attempt and is now in prison. And jazz critic Kevin Whitehead pays tribute to bassist Charles Mingus on the 100th anniversary of his birth.
22/04/2245m 11s

Inside The Murdoch Media Empire

The new CNN+ docuseries The Murdochs looks inside the Fox media empire and the family's behind-the-scenes in-fighting. Journalist Jim Rutenberg says the real-life drama rivals HBO's Succession. "I ... have always suspected that the Succession writers have some mole in the family because it's just too many things they seem to know," Rutenberg says. "It's just got all the drama you want in television, but democracy hinges on its future."
21/04/2244m 43s

Fairport Convention Band Co-Founder Richard Thompson

The British singer, songwriter and guitarist talks about his formative years, and about pioneering a new musical genre that blended rock with traditional music of the British isles. Thompson's new memoir is Beeswing.
20/04/2245m 58s

Tim McGraw

Country music singers McGraw and Faith Hill are starring in the Paramount+ series 1883. The show tells the story of a group of Eastern European immigrants trying to make their way in covered wagons from Texas to Oregon. Before they filmed, they attended "cowboy camp," to learn the basics of riding horses and driving wagons. We talk with McGraw about the series, falling in love with Faith Hill, and learning about his birth father, MLB pitcher Tug McGraw.
19/04/2244m 30s

Comic Jerrod Carmichael Reveals His Secrets

In his new HBO comedy special, Rothaniel, Carmichael opens up about his real name, his family tree, and his sexual orientation. We'll go deeper into these issues — and talk about how being honest about them changed his comedy and his life. "The more honest I am, the freer I am," he says.
18/04/2244m 44s

Best Of: Molly Shannon / Delia Ephron

In addition to SNL, Molly Shannon has co-starred in the comedy series The Other Two and The White Lotus, and will soon appear in the Showtime comedy series I Love That for You. We talk with Shannon about the tragic event of her childhood that changed her life, and how she found comedy. Her memoir is Hello, Molly! Ken Tucker reviews a debut album from Wet Leg. Delia Ephron, who co-wrote the '90s film You've Got Mail with her sister Nora, found herself in the plotline of a romantic comedy. In her new memoir Left on Tenth: A Second Chance at Life, Delia Ephron writes about finding new love at age 72, in the face of grief and cancer.
16/04/2248m 4s

Remembering Jazz Pianist & Composer Jessica Williams

Williams was a dazzling player and a favorite at Fresh Air. She died March 10 at 73. We'll listen back to her 1997 performance and interview.
15/04/2246m 46s

Trump, The GOP Kingmaker / Remembering Gilbert Gottfried

NYT correspondent Shane Goldmacher says Trump doles out endorsements to Republican candidates to elevate allies, punish enemies, and make the "Big Lie" that the 2020 election was stolen into a party litmus test. Also, we remember comic Gilbert Gottfried who died this week. Known for his unusual voice and cranky stage persona, he was a perfect fit to play the evil parrot Iago in Disney's Aladdin. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1992.
14/04/2244m 55s

Writer Delia Ephron's Real-Life Rom-Com

Delia Ephron, who co-wrote the '90s film You've Got Mail with her sister Nora, found herself in the plotline of a romantic comedy. In her new memoir Left on Tenth: A Second Chance at Life, Delia Ephron writes about finding new love at age 72, in the face of grief and cancer. Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews The First Lady on Showtime.
13/04/2245m 45s

The Pandemic Profiteers

ProPublica reporter David McSwane tells the story of people and businesses that profited from the COVID-19 pandemic. He found the government awarded lucrative contracts to many people with a history of fraudulent business practices documented in public records, if anyone had bothered to check. His new book is Pandemic, Inc.
12/04/2245m 50s

Actor & Comedian Molly Shannon

When Molly Shannon started finding success on Saturday Night Live, she remembers feeling depressed. "I realized that really the only person I wanted to say, 'Oh my gosh, I'm so, so proud of you, Molly' was my mom," she says. But Shannon's mother, along with her younger sister and a cousin, had died decades earlier in a car crash. Shannon's new memoir Hello, Molly! recounts the tragic as well as the wonderful turning points in her life. In addition to SNL, Shannon has co-starred in the comedy series The Other Two and The White Lotus, and will soon appear in the Showtime comedy series I Love That for You.
11/04/2246m 27s

Best Of: Groundbreaking Conductor Marin Alsop / Poet Ocean Vuong

In 2007, Alsop became the first woman to lead a major American orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony. But on the way to great success, she faced plenty of rejection. "Girls can't do that," Alsop recalls her violin teacher told her at age nine, of becoming a conductor. "I'd never heard a phrase like that," Alsop says. "You know, it never occurred to me that there was something that girls couldn't do." Alsop was mentored by Leonard Bernstein, and has conducted major orchestras around the world. Also, John Powers reviews the new HBO Max crime thriller Tokyo Vice. Finally, Vuong is author of the acclaimed novel On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous. His novel was published in 2019, the same year he won a MacArthur "genius" grant. It was also the same year his mother died. "Ever since I lost her, I've felt that my life has been lived in only two days," Vuong tells Tonya Mosley. "There's the today where she is not here, and then the vast and endless yesterday where she was." Vuong has a new poetry collection called Time Is a Mother, which he describes as "a search for life in the aftershocks of death."
09/04/2248m 20s

Acclaimed Novelist Kazuo Ishiguro

The Nobel Prize-winning novelist's latest book, Klara and the Sun, is set in the future and has an artificially intelligent narrator. "I wanted some of that childlike freshness and openness and naivety to survive all the way through the text in her," he says. We talk about his writing process, hitchhiking in the '60s, and his family history in Nagasaki.Also, David Bianculli reviews 61st Street, a new AMC series about crime, the police, and the courts.
08/04/2245m 51s

The Abortion Underground

Activists are mobilizing in preparation for the weakening or end of Roe v. Wade. That's the subject of Jessica Bruder's new cover story for The Atlantic. "There are lots of people who want to keep abortion accessible for everybody who might want access to abortion, regardless of what the Supreme Court does," she says. Bruder is also author of the book Nomadland, which was adapted into an Oscar-winning film. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Sea of Tranquility the new novel by Emily St. John Mandel.
07/04/2245m 9s

Actor Adam Scott On 'Severance'

Scott is known for TV comedies like Parks and Recreation and Party Down, the drama series Big Little Lies, and the film Step Brothers. Now Scott stars in the Apple TV+ series Severance, which gives a sci-fi take on work-life balance. He plays a man who's chosen to have a chip implanted in his brain to separate his work life from his home life. "I now have no real separation, nor have I ever," he says of his own work as an actor.Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a reissue of Ornette Coleman's first two albums. And John Powers reviews the new HBO Max crime thriller Tokyo Vice.
06/04/2245m 10s

Poet & Author Ocean Vuong

Vuong is author of the acclaimed novel On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous. It was published in 2019, the same year he won a MacArthur "genius" grant. It was also the same year his mother died. "Ever since I lost her, I've felt that my life has been lived in only two days," Vuong tells Tonya Mosley. "There's the today where she is not here, and then the vast and endless yesterday where she was." Vuong has a new poetry collection called Time Is a Mother, which he describes as "a search for life in the aftershocks of death."Also, Ken Tucker reviews the new album by Wet Leg, who he describes as indie-rock's newest obsession.
05/04/2245m 38s

Groundbreaking Conductor Marin Alsop

In 2007, Alsop became the first woman to lead a major American orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony. But on the way to great success, she faced plenty of rejection. "Girls can't do that," Alsop recalls her violin teacher telling her at age nine, of becoming a conductor. "I'd never heard a phrase like that," Alsop says. "You know, it never occurred to me that there was something that girls couldn't do." Alsop was mentored by Leonard Bernstein, and has conducted major orchestras around the world.
04/04/2245m 36s

Best Of: Sam Waterston / A Civil Rights Leader Who Investigated Lynchings

Waterston joined the cast of Law & Order in 1994 on a one-year contract. He wound up staying 16 years, until the series wrapped in 2010. Now the show's back — and so is he. We talk about working into his 80s, Grace and Frankie, and how the 1984 film The Killing Fields changed his life and career.Also, David Bianculli reviews Julia, a new HBO series about Julia Child.And White Lies author A.J. Baime tells the story of Walter White, a light-skinned Black man whose ancestors had been enslaved. For years White risked his life investigating racial violence in the South.
02/04/2247m 30s

The Extraordinary Lives Of Migratory Birds

Author Scott Weidensaul talks about the millions of birds flying unseen over our heads in the night sky, how the bar-tailed godwit can fly more than a week over water without stopping, and how new tracking technology may help with strategies to keep them alive. His book is A World on the Wing.Also, Justin Chang reviews Nitram, the new film about events leading up to a mass shooting in Australia.
01/04/2245m 42s

How Ukraine Is Fighting On The Digital Battlefield

Time's Vera Bergengruen says Ukraine's citizen IT force, led by a 31-year-old minister of digital transformation, is blunting Russian disinformation and galvanizing international support. The Ukrainian government has enlisted as many as 300,000 citizens to volunteer for the so-called IT army. "There are people who worked at tech companies, who had startups, who are cybersecurity experts, and many of them are just ordinary citizens who raised their hands," Bergengruen says. Also, John Powers reviews Slow Horses, the new six-part spy thriller series on Apple TV+, starring Gary Oldman.
31/03/2245m 8s

How A Civil Rights Leader Risked His Life to Investigate Lynchings

White Lies author A.J. Baime tells the story of Walter White, a light-skinned Black man whose ancestors had been enslaved. For years White risked his life investigating racial violence in the South.
30/03/2244m 43s

The History Of Surgery

Medical historian and surgeon Ira Rutkow points to physical evidence that suggests Stone Age people conducted — and survived — brain surgery. We talk about the evolution of surgery from ancient societies to robotic surgery today. His new book is Empire of the Scalpel.Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Young Mungo by Douglas Stuart.
29/03/2245m 6s

Sam Waterston On Returning To 'Law & Order'

Waterston joined the cast of the original NBC series in 1994 on a one-year contract. He wound up staying 16 years, until the series wrapped in 2010. Now the show's back — and so is he. We talk about working into his 80s, Grace and Frankie, and how the 1984 film The Killing Fields changed his life and career. Also, David Bianculli reviews Julia, a new HBO series about Julia Child.
28/03/2245m 6s

Best Of: Pianist Jeremy Denk / Columnist Frank Bruni

MacArthur "genius" grant winner Jeremy Denk talks about what he learned from his piano teachers, his pivotal artistic moments and his failures and frustrations. Denk's new memoir is Every Good Boy Does Fine.John Powers reviews Life & Beth on Hulu, created by and starring Amy Schumer. After experiencing a rare kind of stroke, NYT writer Frank Bruni suddenly became blind in his right eye. Doctors told him there was a decent chance the same could happen to his other eye. It forced him to make a decision: He could focus on what had been lost or on what remained. He chose the latter. Bruni's new memoir isThe Beauty of Dusk.
26/03/2248m 5s

Remembering Secretary Of State Madeleine Albright

Appointed by President Clinton in 1997, Albright advocated for the expansion of NATO into the former Soviet bloc countries of Eastern Europe. She died March 23. Originally broadcast in 2003 and 2018. Justin Chang reviews Everything Everywhere All At Once starring Michelle Yeoh.
25/03/2247m 0s

The Massive Aid Flowing Into Ukraine

Time reporter Simon Shuster recently returned from the Ukrainian-Polish border. Watching as U.S. planes brought in loads of weapons, he felt like he was standing on the brink of something massive. "We are on the edge of a really era-defining war. We're already in it," he says.
24/03/2244m 16s

Healing & Heartbreak In A Chicago ER

Veteran ER doctor Thomas Fisher's new book describes his experiences in the first year of the Covid pandemic treating patients on Chicago's South Side. He never had enough time or resources for his needy patients before the pandemic, but 2020 brought COVID and a wave of gun violence that stressed patients, doctors and staff in new ways. His new book is The Emergency.Also John Powers reviews the new Apple TV series Pachinko, based on the best-selling novel by Korean American author Min Jin Lee, and Kevin Whitehead reviews an album by Cecil Taylor.
23/03/2244m 59s

Columnist Frank Bruni On Vision Lost & Found

After experiencing a rare kind of stroke, NYT writer Frank Bruni suddenly became blind in his right eye. Doctors told him there was a decent chance the same could happen to his other eye. It forced him to make a decision: He could focus on what had been lost or on what remained. He chose the latter. Bruni's new memoir is The Beauty of Dusk.
22/03/2243m 57s

Classical Pianist Jeremy Denk

The MacArthur "genius" grant winner talks about what he learned from his piano teachers, his pivotal artistic moments and his failures and frustrations. Denk's new memoir is Every Good Boy Does Fine.
21/03/2246m 1s

Best Of: Seth Meyers / A Tour Of The Human Body

As the host of NBC's Late Night, it's Seth Meyers' job to be funny, even when the news is catastrophic. He's satirized issues in the news, including in times of tragedy and war ever since he became an anchor on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update in 2006. His first SNL episode was the episode following 9/11. Seth Meyers has a new children's book called I'm Not Scared, YOU'RE Scared. Also, we'll talk about the hidden world inside our bodies — from the remarkable design of our organs, to the messages contained in our body fluids, with Dr. Jonathan Reisman, author of The Unseen Body. He's a pediatrician, internist and ER physician who's worked in different cultures and in extreme climates. Justin Chang reviews the new Pixar movie, Turning Red.
19/03/2248m 58s

Remembering Actor William Hurt

Hurt died March 13 at the age of 71. He was a leading man in the 1980s in the films Body Heat, Broadcast News, and The Big Chill. But he thought of himself as a character actor, and won an Oscar for his performance as a drag queen sharing a prison cell with a political dissident in the film Kiss of the Spider Woman.Also, John Powers reviews Amy Schumer's new series on Hulu, Life & Beth, and Justin Chang reviews the film Deep Water, a new psychological thriller starring Ben Affleck and Ana de Armas.
18/03/2245m 5s

A Crash Course On NATO History

Historian Mary Elise Sarotte tells how NATO expanded into Eastern Europe after the fall of the U.S.S.R, and is now obligated to defend nations near Russia's war in Ukraine. Her book is Not One Inch.
17/03/2245m 9s

A Doctor's Guided Tour Inside Your Body

We talk with Dr. Jonathan Reisman, author of The Unseen Body, about how our organs function, the messages contained in our body fluids, and his experiences treating patients with diseased organs. Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead remembers trumpet player and bandleader Ron Miles, who died last week at age 58.
16/03/2244m 32s

Former U.S. Ambassador To Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch

Yovanovitch was relieved of her post following a smear campaign orchestrated by Trump lawyer, Rudy Giuliani. She also testified at Trump's first impeachment. Her new memoir is 'Lessons from the Edge.' Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews a new collection of the novels of esteemed YA author Virginia Hamilton.
15/03/2245m 43s

Seth Meyers On Fear, Fatherhood & Friendship

We talk with the Late Night host about his second son's dramatic birth story, John Mulaney's intervention, and his new children's book, I'm Not Scared, YOU'RE Scared. Meyers says the book is about our relationship with fear. Maureen Corrigan reviews The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka.
14/03/2246m 51s

Best Of: Amy Bloom On Alzheimer's And Assisted Suicide / Cartoonist David Sipress

Shortly after he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2019, architect Brian Ameche, then in his mid-60s, told his wife, novelist Amy Bloom, that he wanted to end life on his own terms, before the disease robbed him of everything. Bloom talks about how she traveled with him to Zurich so he could legally terminate his life. Her new memoir is In Love.Cartoonist David Sipress endured years of rejection before finally landing a gig with The New Yorker in '98. "I wasn't about to let all that rejection get in the way," he says. His new memoir is What's So Funny?
12/03/2248m 38s

Patrick Stewart On 'Star Trek: Picard'

Patrick Stewart is back as Jean-Luc Picard in season 2 of the CBS All Access series Star Trek: Picard. "I am not averse to risk-taking and I don't judge myself," he says. Stewart spoke with Sam Briger in 2020. Also, Justin Chang reviews the new Pixar film Turning Red.
11/03/2245m 50s

Why Russians Are Fleeing Their Country

New Yorker staff writer Masha Gessen says there's been an exodus from Russia in the last week and a half: "It's a sudden and drastic descent into a sense of having no country." Gessen reported in late January and February from Ukraine, and then went to Moscow after the invasion. On the night Putin shut down the last remaining independent source of TV news, Gessen was at that TV studio. They're now in the Republic of Georgia.
10/03/2244m 10s

How Sandy Hook Ushered In A New Era Of Conspiracies

In the years since the Sandy Hook shooting, the victims' families have endured relentless online abuse, stalking and personal threats. New York Times journalist Elizabeth Williamson examines how the conspiracy theories around the tragedy began — and how they changed America. Her book is Sandy Hook: An American Tragedy and the Battle for Truth.
09/03/2244m 17s

Writer Amy Bloom Reflects On Her Husband's Assisted Suicide

Shortly after he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2019, architect Brian Ameche, then in his mid-60s, told his wife, novelist Amy Bloom, that he wanted to end life on his own terms, before the disease robbed him of everything. Bloom talks about how she traveled with him to Zurich so he could legally terminate his life. Her new memoir is In Love.Ken Tucker reviews Del McCoury's album Almost Proud.
08/03/2245m 10s

New Yorker Cartoonist David Sipress

Sipress endured years of rejection before finally landing a gig with The New Yorker in '98. "I wasn't about to let all that rejection get in the way," he says. His new memoir is What's So Funny?
07/03/2245m 44s

Best Of: China's Influence On Hollywood / Living With Chronic Illness

Wall Street Journal reporter Erich Schwartzel says that Hollywood film studios increasingly rely upon Chinese audiences to break even — which can result in self-censorship. His new book is Red Carpet.Film critic Justin Chang reviews The Batman, starring Robert Pattinson. Also, we'll hear from Meghan O'Rourke who has been reporting on long COVID. She'll talk about how research into long COVID offers insights into other mysterious chronic illnesses.
05/03/2249m 13s

Benedict Cumberbatch / Film Composer Jonny Greenwood

Benedict Cumberbatch stars in Jane Campion's Western The Power of the Dog as Phil Burbank, a hyper-masculine cattle rancher living on the plains of Montana in the 1920s. We talk about how body odor helped him channel the character, toxic masculinity, and filming on location in breathtaking landscapes of New Zealand. He's nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor. Jonny Greenwood plays guitar and keyboard in Radiohead, but in 2007 director Paul Thomas Anderson enlisted him to score his film There Will Be Blood. Since then, Greenwood has scored such films as Spencer and Phantom Thread. He's nominated for Best Original Score for The Power of the Dog. TV critic David Bianculli reviews Winning Time on HBO, about the 1980s Lakers.
04/03/2245m 1s

How The War Between Russia & Ukraine Might End

Historian and former State Department official Michael Kimmage says the war in Ukraine is going "surprisingly badly" for the Kremlin: "It didn't get the politics of Ukraine right. It didn't expect the Ukrainians to fight." We talk about possible scenarios of how this conflict could end, and what that means for Ukraine, Europe and the U.S.
03/03/2245m 7s

'Raised By Wolves' Series Creator

In the HBO Max series Raised By Wolves, humanity is near extinction after a global religious war. Two androids are sent to another planet to raise human children and keep the species alive. We talk with series creator Aaron Guzikowski about how parenthood and faith inspired the show. Also, John Powers reviews the British thriller series The Tourist (on HBO Max),and film critic Justin Chang reviews The Batman.
02/03/2245m 32s

How Russia's Invasion Of Ukraine Changes The World As We Know It

Journalist Anne Applebaum has been covering the war in Ukraine for The Atlantic. "I don't think that we will ever again smugly assume that borders in Europe can't be changed by force," she says. We talk about why Putin takes Ukrainian democracy as a personal and political threat — and how Stalin created a famine to destroy the Ukrainian national movement in the 1930s.
01/03/2245m 0s

Long COVID, Chronic Illness & Searching For Answers

Meghan O'Rourke says long COVID and other chronic illnesses put an unwieldy burden on patients, who have to testify to the reality of their own illness. Her new book, The Invisible Kingdom, chronicles her personal struggle to find diagnoses for her own nerve pain, brain fog, extreme fatigue and other symptoms."When you're at the edge of medical knowledge, the lack of evidence is treated as evidence that the problem is you and your mind," O'Rourke says. "I felt, in a sense, kind of locked away in a room like a 19th-century hysteric."
28/02/2244m 19s

Best Of: 'Abbott Elementary' Creator Quinta Brunson / Novelist Julie Otsuka

Quinta Brunson stars as a rookie second grade teacher in an under-resourced public elementary school in the mockumentary sitcom Abbott Elementary. Brunson says she conceived of the show with her mother — a teacher — in mind.Kevin Whitehead reviews a new stash of home and live recordings by jazz pianist Lennie Tristano.Though the main character in Julie Otsuka's new novel, The Swimmers, has lost much of her memory to dementia, she still remembers being sent to an incarceration camp for Japanese Americans during World War II. We talk with the novelist about her own family's history.
26/02/2248m 45s

The Remarkable Life Of Frederick Douglass

Historian David Blight's Pulitzer Prize-winning biography traced Frederick Douglass' path from slavery to abolitionist and inspired HBO's documentary, Frederick Douglass: In Five Speeches. "Seeing and hearing Douglass became, through the course of the 19th century, a kind of American wonder of the world," Blight says. Also, we remember anthropologist and physician Paul Farmer, who died Feb. 21. He dedicated his life to providing health care for the poor in Haiti, Rwanda and other countries. He spoke with Fresh Air in 2011. Film critic Justin Chang reviews Cyrano, starring Peter Dinklage.
25/02/2246m 27s

What The Insect Crisis Means For Humans

Environmental writer Oliver Milman says habitat loss, pesticides and climate change are killing off insects worldwide, which, in turn, threatens humans. We talk about the critical role insects play in pollinating plants we eat, breaking down waste, and forming the base of a food chain for other animals — and what would happen if they disappeared. Milman's book is The Insect Crisis.Ken Tucker reviews Mitski's new album Laurel Hell.
24/02/2243m 59s

'Abbott Elementary' Creator/Star Quinta Brunson

Quinta Brunson stars as a rookie second grade teacher in an under-resourced public elementary school in the mockumentary sitcom Abbott Elementary. Brunson says she conceived of the show with her mother — a teacher — in mind. "The beauty is someone being so resilient for a job that is so underpaid and so underappreciated because it makes them feel fulfilled," she says. Also, David Bianculli reviews the new Law & Order reboot.
23/02/2246m 5s

Novelist Julie Otsuka On 'The Swimmers'

Though the main character in Julie Otsuka's new novel has lost much of her memory to dementia, she still remembers being sent to an incarceration camp for Japanese Americans during World War II. We talk with the novelist about her family's history and writing The Swimmers. Maureen Corrigan reviews Vladímír, a virtuoso debut novel by Julia May Jonas, and jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a new stash of personal recordings from Lennie Tristano.
22/02/2246m 23s

Does China Have Hollywood In An Economic Muzzle?

Wall Street Journal reporter Erich Schwartzel says that film studios increasingly rely upon Chinese audiences to break even — which can result in self-censorship. His new book is Red Carpet.
21/02/2245m 25s

Best Of: Bill Cosby's Legacy / Matthew Macfadyen

Comic and producer W. Kamau Bell talks about directing the Showtime series We Need to Talk About Cosby, which explores how Bill Cosby became "America's dad," and a hero in Black culture — and how that changed when he was accused and convicted as a rapist. Podcast critic Nick Quah reviews The Trojan Horse Affair from Serial Productions. Also, we hear from actor Matthew Macfadyen. He talks about playing Tom Wambsgans in HBO's Succession and Mr. Darcy in the 2005 film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice.
19/02/2248m 27s

Penélope Cruz / Javier Bardem

Penélope Cruz is nominated for Best Actress for her role in Parallel Mothers, the latest movie written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar. And her husband, Javier Bardem, is nominated for his role as Desi Arnaz in Being the Ricardos. He's probably best known for playing a psychopathic serial killer in the Coen brothers' film, No Country for Old Men.Also Justin Chang reviews two international films — Belgium's Playground and Chad's Lingui, the Sacred Bonds.
18/02/2246m 14s

The Battle For Voting Rights

Michael Waldman, president of the Brennan Center for Justice, says lawmakers in 27 states are considering hundreds of bills designed to limit voting or undermine the integrity of the election process. We talk about the ongoing threat to our democracy and fair elections. Waldman's book is The Fight to Vote.
17/02/2244m 31s

The Untold Story Of 'Civil Rights Queen' Constance Baker Motley

Though she litigated Brown v. The Board of Education, was the first Black woman to argue before the Supreme Court, and represented MLK, few people know her name: Constance Baker Motley. Guest interviewer Tonya Mosley speaks with her biographer, Tomika Brown-Nagin, author of Civil Rights Queen.John Powers reviews Severance on Apple TV+.
16/02/2244m 8s

An Underground Journey With Afghan Refugees

Journalist Matthieu Aikins accompanied his Afghan interpreter when he decided to flee Afghanistan in 2016, using smugglers' routes to make his way to Europe and start a new life. For Aikins, it meant shedding his own identity and passport and taking risks refugees take — heading into the Mediterranean sea at midnight in a flimsy, overcrowded rubber craft, where Coast Guard patrols would ram the vessel to turn refugees away from their destination. Aikins' new book is The Naked Don't Fear the Water. Also, podcast critic Nick Quah reviews Serial's new show, The Trojan Horse Affair.
15/02/2246m 14s

W. Kamau Bell On Bill Cosby's Legacy

About 60 women have come forward accusing Cosby of drugging and raping them. In 2018, Cosby was convicted of three felony counts of aggravated indecent assault, though that conviction was overturned on a technicality in 2021. W. Kamau Bell's new Showtime documentary series, We Need To Talk About Cosby, grapples with the comedian's tainted legacy, which Bell describes as a "third-rail" conversation for many people in the Black community. "[Cosby] was America's dad during The Cosby Show — not Black America's dad, America's dad," he says.
14/02/2244m 51s

Best Of: Jonny Greenwood / How The Method Changed Acting

Jonny Greenwood plays guitar and keyboard in Radiohead, but in 2007 director Paul Thomas Anderson enlisted him to score his film There Will Be Blood. Since then, Greenwood has scored such films as The Power of the Dog, Spencer, and Phantom Thread. Method acting is more than mining personal experiences to play a character — or physically transforming for a role. Author and cultural critic Isaac Butler traces the history of the technique in The Method.
12/02/2248m 11s

Remembering Antiwar Activist Todd Gitlin / 'Maus' Author Art Spiegelman

We remember activist, scholar and social critic Todd Gitlin, who died Feb. 5 at the age of 79. He was president of SDS, the Students for a Democratic Society and helped organize the first national demonstration against the Vietnam War. He continued his commitment to social change as a teacher and writer. John Powers reviews a reissue of a groundbreaking crime novel about a gay detective.Also, we'll listen back to our 1987 interview with Art Spiegelman, whose Pulitizer Prize-winning graphic novel Maus, about the Holocaust, is one of the books recently being banned. Finally, Justin Chang reviews the thriller Kimi directed by Steven Soderbergh.
11/02/2247m 11s

What We Know Now About Jan. 6

NYT congressional reporter Luke Broadwater was in the Capitol when the mob started breaking down barricades. We talk about the House committee's investigation into the attack and new revelations about Trump destroying documents and attempting to seize voting machines to overturn the election. We'll also consider the possibility of Trump facing criminal charges.
10/02/2245m 23s

How The Method Changed Acting

Method acting is more than mining personal experiences to play a character — or physically transforming for a role. Author and cultural critic Isaac Butler traces the history of the technique in The Method.
09/02/2245m 38s

How The GOP Became The Party Of Trump

New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters says the religious right and social conservatives "got basically everything that they wanted" from Trump's presidency. We also talk about how Sarah Palin pushed the Republican Party to the right. Peters' new book is Insurgency. Also, David Bianculli reviews Pam & Tommy, about Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's 1995 sex tape that was put online without their consent.
08/02/2246m 5s

Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood On Scoring Films

Greenwood plays guitar and keyboard in Radiohead, but in 2007 auteur director Paul Thomas Anderson enlisted him to score his film There Will Be Blood. Since then, Greenwood has scored such films as The Power of the Dog, Spencer, and Phantom Thread. We talk with the musician about his scoring process, his experiments with instruments, and how he joined Radiohead. Also, Ken Tucker reviews Connie Smith's new album The Cry of the Heart.
07/02/2245m 50s

Best Of: Guillermo del Toro / The Science Of Heartbreak

Guillermo del Toro's new movie, Nightmare Alley, is a film noir starring Bradley Cooper as a murderer who joins a traveling carnival, first as part of the crew, and then as part of a clairvoyant act. The Oscar-winning Mexican director talks about researching psychics and why he relates to Frankenstein's monster. Del Toro also directed The Shape of Water, the Hellboy movies and Pan's Labyrinth.Science writer Florence Williams experienced what felt like a brain injury when her husband left her after more than 25 years together. So she decided to explore the connection between heartache and physical pain — including possible changes in the immune, digestive and nervous systems. Her new book is Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey.
05/02/2249m 21s

Christine Baranski / Remembering Actor Howard Hesseman

Actor and singer Christine Baranski is now one of the stars of the new HBO series The Gilded Age. She spoke with Terry Gross in 2020. Also, we listen back to our 1988 interview with Howard Hesseman, who died last Saturday at the age of 81. Hesseman played a DJ in the series WKRP in Cincinnati, and a teacher in Head of the Class. Justin Chang reviews the Norwegian film The Worst Person in the World.
04/02/2244m 55s

Teachers Could Face Penalties For Lessons On Race, Gender, Politics

Across the U.S., educators are being censored for broaching controversial topics. Since January 2021, researcher Jeffrey Sachs says that 35 different states have introduced 137 bills limiting what schools can teach with regard to race, American history, politics, sexual orientation and gender identity. One proposed law in South Carolina, for instance, prohibits teachers from discussing any topic that creates "discomfort, guilt or anguish" on the basis of political belief. We talk about these bills and laws and their implications.
03/02/2244m 54s

A Family's Secret Mob Operation

Russell Shorto's grandfather was a mob leader in the industrial town of Johnstown, Pa. Shorto writes about the havoc that resulted from his grandfather's operation in the memoir, Smalltime. The story involves rackets, political payoffs, and the unsolved murder of a bookie. John Powers reviews Reacher, a series on Amazon Prime Video.
02/02/2245m 40s

The Science Of Heartbreak

Science writer Florence Williams experienced what felt like a brain injury when her husband left her after more than 25 years together. So she decided to explore the connection between heartache and physical pain — including possible changes in the immune, digestive and nervous systems. Her new book is Heartbreak: A Personal and Scientific Journey.Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Free Love, by Tessa Hadley.
01/02/2246m 9s

Dir. Guillermo del Toro

Del Toro's new movie, Nightmare Alley, is a film noir starring Bradley Cooper as a murderer who joins a traveling carnival, first as part of the crew, and then as part of a clairvoyant act. The Oscar-winning Mexican director talks about researching psychics, his feelings about mortality, and why he relates to Frankenstein's monster. Del Toro also directed The Shape of Water, the Hellboy movies and Pan's Labyrinth.
31/01/2245m 38s

Best Of: A Journey Through The South / The Genius Of Buster Keaton

Princeton African American Studies professor Imani Perry says the South can be seen as an "origin point" for the way the nation operates. Her book, South to America, reflects on the region's history and traces the steps of an enslaved ancestor. Ken Tucker reviews Neil Young's newest album, Barn. Buster Keaton was a silent film star in the 1920s, but he was far more than an actor and stuntman. He conceived and directed his films, cited by some of America's leading filmmakers as inspirations. We speak with Slate film critic Dana Stevens, whose new book, Camera Man, examines Keaton's work and influence, and chronicles his colorful life.
29/01/2249m 3s

Remembering Comic Louie Anderson

Anderson grew up poor in Minnesota, in a family with 11 children. His Emmy-winning performance in the FX series Baskets was based upon his own mother. Anderson died Jan. 21. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2016 about his family, mortality, and how his material onstage has evolved. Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews the four-part documentary series We Need to Talk About Cosby, created by W. Kamau Bell.
28/01/2246m 47s

Is Ginni Thomas A Threat To SCOTUS?

New Yorker staff writer Jane Mayer discusses the conservative beliefs and influence of Ginni Thomas, wife of Justice Clarence Thomas. She's a right-wing activist and has been associated with some groups involved in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
27/01/2244m 56s

'Succession' Actor Matthew Macfadyen

In 2005, the British actor played brooding aristocrat Mr. Darcy in the film adaptation of Pride & Prejudice. Now, he's a scheming Midwesterner on Succession: "Tom Wambsgans is a long way from Mr. Darcy," he says. We talk about Tom's complicated relationships with Shiv Roy and cousin Greg, Macfadyen's background in the theater, and how he didn't think he was "dishy" enough to play Mr. Darcy. Also, we remember Vietnamese Buddhist monk and activist Thich Nhat Hanh. He died Jan. 22.
26/01/2246m 13s

A Journey Through The American South

Princeton African American Studies professor Imani Perry says the South can be seen as an "origin point" for the way the nation operates. Her book, South to America, reflects on the region's history and traces the steps of an enslaved ancestor. "The South in some ways becomes the repository for the nation's sins, right?" she says. "And then it allows the rest of the country to conceive of itself as relatively pristine."Also, Justin Chang reviews the Finnish film Compartment No. 6.
25/01/2245m 33s

The Genius Of Buster Keaton

We explore the subtle genius of a man often remembered for pratfalls and sight gags. Buster Keaton was a silent film star in the 1920s, but he was far more than an actor and stuntman. He conceived and directed his films, cited by some of America's leading filmmakers as inspirations. We speak with Slate film critic Dana Stevens, whose new book examines Keaton's work and influence, and chronicles his colorful life. Her book is Camera Man: Buster Keaton, the Dawn of Cinema, and the Invention of the 20th Century.
24/01/2245m 48s

Best Of: Benedict Cumberbatch / Brian Cox

Benedict Cumberbatch stars in Jane Campion's Western The Power of the Dog as Phil Burbank, a hyper-masculine cattle rancher living on the plains of Montana in the 1920s. We talk about how body odor helped him channel the character, toxic masculinity, and filming on location in breathtaking landscapes of New Zealand. Maureen Corrigan reviews one of this year's most anticipated books, To Paradise, by Hanya Yanagihara.Succession actor Brian Cox says ruthless business tycoon Logan Roy is one of the most extraordinary roles he's ever played: "He is a misanthrope [who] is very disappointed with the human experiment."
22/01/2248m 35s

Remembering André Leon Talley / Ronnie Spector

André Leon Talley, titan of the fashion world, died this week at 73. He was Vogue editor-at-large from 1998 until 2013. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2018 about his journey from the Jim Crow South to Paris ateliers. Also, we remember Ronnie Spector, the leader of the '60s girl group the Ronettes, best-known for their hit "Be My Baby." She died last week at 78. Also, David Bianculli reviews the HBO series The Gilded Age.
21/01/2246m 43s

A Marine-Turned-Journalist Returns To Afghanistan

Thomas Gibbons-Neff served two tours in Afghanistan in the Marines, and is now a New York Times reporter and Kabul bureau chief. He recently interviewed a high-level Taliban commander about a battle they had both been engaged in.Ken Tucker reviews Neil Young's new album Barn.
20/01/2245m 10s

Benedict Cumberbatch

Cumberbatch stars in Jane Campion's Western The Power of the Dog as Phil Burbank, a hyper-masculine cattle rancher living on the plains of Montana in the 1920s. We talk about how body odor helped him channel the character, toxic masculinity, and filming on location in breathtaking landscapes of New Zealand. Cumberbatch also shares stories from his past — like his experiences teaching English at a Tibetan monastery and getting kidnapped in South Africa in 2005.
19/01/2244m 42s

'Succession' Star Brian Cox

Cox says ruthless business tycoon Logan Roy is one of the most extraordinary roles he's ever played: "He is a misanthrope [who] is very disappointed with the human experiment." We talk with the Scottish actor about the musicality of his voice, why he doesn't practice method acting, and growing up in poverty.Also, Justin Chang reviews Asghar Farhadi's new film, A Hero.
18/01/2246m 2s

Attorney Laura Coates On The Fight For Voting Rights

While working for the Department of Justice, attorney Laura Coates says she saw voter rolls being purged and instances where polling places were moved to known Klan locations. She also worked as a prosecutor and had to grapple with her own relationship with law enforcement, as a Black woman. Coates is a CNN analyst and hosts a SiriusXM show. Her new memoir is 'Just Pursuit.'
17/01/2245m 53s

Best Of: Sidney Poitier / Nicole Kidman

Sidney Poitier, who paved the way for Black actors in film, died last week at 94. He was the first Black man to win an Oscar. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2000 about growing up in the Bahamas and breaking into acting. A leading man in the '50s and '60s, some of his best-known films include Lilies of the Field, In the Heat of the Night, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and To Sir, with Love.In Being the Ricardos, Nicole Kidman shifts back and forth between Lucille Ball and her character Lucy of I Love Lucy. We talk with the Australian actor about the challenges of the role and about ageism in Hollywood.
15/01/2248m 2s

Remembering Lyricist Marilyn Bergman & Dir. Peter Bogdanovich

We remember lyricist Marilyn Bergman, half of a songwriting duo with her husband Alan. The songs she and her husband co-wrote won Oscars, Golden Globes and Grammys, and were popularized by Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Fred Astaire and Barbra Streisand, just to name a few. She died last week at 93. Also we remember director and author Peter Bogdanovich whose best-known films include The Last Picture Show, Paper Moon and Mask. He died Jan. 6 at 82. TV critic David Bianculli reviews the 4-part documentary series 'Reframed: Marilyn Monroe.'
14/01/2245m 41s

The Unreported Civilian Deaths In The U.S. Air War Against ISIS

New York Times reporter Dave Philipps says a top-secret special ops unit disregarded official protocols to pick targets for airstrikes, resulting in the death of thousands of farmers and families.
13/01/2244m 42s

Nicole Kidman

While her friends and family went to the Australian beaches, Kidman stayed indoors reading — and imaged herself as a character in the books. She says reading is what led her to acting. We talk with the Oscar-winning actor about ageism in Hollywood, singing in a cover band as a teenager, and playing Lucille Ball in Being the Ricardos.
12/01/2245m 18s

Remembering Sidney Poitier

The legendary actor, who paved the way for Black actors in film, died last week at 94. Poitier was the first Black performer to win the best actor Academy Award. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2000 about growing up in the Bahamas and breaking into acting while working as a dishwasher in New York. A leading man in the '50s and '60s, some of his best-known films include A Raisin in the Sun, Lilies of the Field, In the Heat of the Night, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and To Sir, with Love. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews ...and then there's this by the trio Artifacts.
11/01/2246m 35s

Actor Kal Penn

The actor spoke with contributor Ann Marie Baldonado about navigating Hollywood as a young actor of color at a time when there were only stereotypical roles available — and why he took a break from acting to work in the Obama administration. He's best known for his roles in the Harold and Kumar franchise, The Namesake, and on the TV series House. His new memoir is You Can't Be Serious.Maureen Corrigan reviews a suspense novel that takes place in academia, The Latinist, by Mark Prins.
10/01/2244m 52s

Best Of: Kirsten Dunst / The Global Supply Chain

Kirsten Dunst co-stars in the new film The Power of the Dog, along with Benedict Cumberbatch and Jesse Plemons, who plays her husband in the film, and is her husband in real life. We talk about being a child actor and the formative experience of working with Sofia Coppola early in her career. Also, we'll take a sobering look inside the global supply chain — and how it broke — with Wall Street Journal columnist Christopher Mims. His new book is called Arriving Tomorrow.And book critic Maureen Corrigan will tell us about a superb debut suspense novel.
10/01/2248m 44s

Remembering Joan Didion & Betty White

We remember writer Joan Didion, known for her cool, unsentimental observations and distinctive writing. After the sudden death of her husband in 2003, she turned her gaze on her own grief in the memoir, The Year of Magical Thinking. Didion died last month. She spoke with Terry Gross in 1987 and 2005.Also, we remember legendary TV actor Betty White. Her television career spanned the history of TV itself – and that's no exaggeration. She was best known for her roles on The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Golden Girls. She died Dec. 31, just a few weeks shy of her 100th birthday.
07/01/2245m 53s

Why Dan Bongino Is Building A Right-Wing Media Infrastructure

New Yorker writer Evan Osnos says no one in the media has profited more from the Trump era than Dan Bongino, who hosts the country's fourth most listened to radio show and has 8.5 million weekly listeners. Bongino has also helped create and fund right-wing platforms that replicate Twitter, PayPal and YouTube, to lay the groundwork for the 2024 presidential election.
06/01/2244m 54s

Inside The Global Supply Chain

In a new book, Wall Street Journal columnist Christopher Mims looks at how goods make their way from factories in Asia, across the Pacific in container ships and then are moved, sorted and delivered in American warehouses and trucks. Much of the handling is highly automated, he says, which cuts costs, but also lowers wages for workers and makes the remaining jobs stressful and physically punishing. Mims' new book is Arriving Today: From Factory to Front Door – Why Everything Has Changed About How and What We Buy.Also we remember scientist and author Edward Wilson, a pioneer in evolutionary biology whose books won two Pulitzer Prizes.
05/01/2245m 10s

Rep. Raskin Reckons With His Son's Suicide And The Jan. 6 Attack

A year ago, Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., experienced two unimaginable traumas in the span of a single week: On New Year's Eve 2020, his son Tommy died by suicide after succumbing to mental illness. Then, on Jan. 6, 2021, just a day after Tommy's funeral, Raskin was at work in the U.S. Capitol with his daughter and son-in-law when a violent mob stormed the building in an attempt to overturn the results of the presidential election. His memoir, 'Unthinkable,' chronicles his search for answers in the grief that followed both events.
04/01/2245m 25s

Kirsten Dunst

Dunst stars opposite her husband, Jesse Plemons, in Jane Campion's Western, 'The Power of the Dog.' She calls it a "cinematic love letter" to their children. Dunst spoke with Terry Gross about how her experience with depression helped her performance in the film, how she uses dreams to deepen her understanding of her characters, and working with Sofia Coppola as a young actor. David Bianculli reviews 'The Book of Boba Fett' on Disney+.
03/01/2246m 0s

Best Of: The World Of Film Noir / Colson Whitehead

We talk about classic film noir — movies from the '40s and '50s with doomed characters, sexual heat and double crosses — with Eddie Muller, host of the Turner Classic Movies show Noir Alley and author of Dark City: The Lost World of Film Noir.Film critic Justin Chang reviews the new movie The Tragedy of Macbeth, starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand. Also, Colson Whitehead talks about Harlem, hooligans, race and class in the '60s. His new novel, Harlem Shuffle, is about a furniture store owner who's sideline is fencing stolen goods. Whitehead won a Pulitzer Prize for his novel The Underground Railroad, about a 15-year-old enslaved girl who escapes a brutal Georgia plantation. The novel was adapted into a TV series for Amazon.
01/01/2248m 39s

Dave Grohl

The Foo Fighters frontman (and Nirvana drummer) talks about his journey from playing small punk clubs to giant stadiums in his memoir, The Storyteller. He reflects on how he taught himself drums, his friendship with Kurt Cobain, and reinventing himself after Cobain's death. "I was heartbroken," he says. "I didn't really know if I ever wanted to play music again, until I realized that music was the one thing that had healed me my entire life."
31/12/2145m 9s

A 'Schmigadoon!' Show

SNL's Cecily Strong co-stars in the Apple TV+ satire series Schmigadoon!. It centers on a couple who gets trapped in a town where people burst into song. We talk with Strong as well as Cinco Paul, the show's co-creator.
30/12/2144m 59s

Remembering Desmond Tutu

Archbishop Desmond Tutu, a legendary leader in the fight to end apartheid in South Africa, died Sunday at age 90. After Nelson Mandela was elected president in the country's first democratic election, he asked Tutu to chair South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which examined the crimes of apartheid. Tutu preached the healing power of forgiveness. The Nobel Peace Prize-recipient spoke with Terry Gross in 1984 and 1999.
29/12/2145m 20s

Fran Lebowitz

To close out the year, we're listening back to some of our favorite interviews. New York iconoclast and humorist Fran Lebowitz was the subject of Martin Scorsese's Netflix series 'Pretend It's A City.' She talked with Terry Gross about driving a cab in the '70s, her friendship with Scorsese, and being a lifelong germaphobe: "The truth is, if I dropped the Hope Diamond on the floor of a subway car, I'd leave it there." Also, podcast critic Nick Quah shares three shows that stand out from this year.
28/12/2144m 50s

'Succession' Star Kieran Culkin

On the HBO show 'Succession,' Culkin plays one of three siblings vying for control of a media empire. The character, he says, "doesn't really know what [it] means to suffer consequences." Culkin also talks about witnessing child stardom via his brother, 'Home Alone' star Macaulay Culkin.
27/12/2146m 9s

Best Of: Penélope Cruz / Alan Cumming

Penélope Cruz stars in Pedro Almodóvar's new film 'Parallel Mothers.' She plays Janis, a single woman around the age of 40, who unintentionally became pregnant. Cruz spoke with Terry Gross about how emotional the film was to make, and her own experience of becoming a mother.Also, Justin Chang shares his favorite films of the year.And Alan Cumming, a Tony Award-winning actor for 'Cabaret,' previously wrote about his childhood in Scotland and his abusive father. Cumming's new memoir centers on love, sexuality, career and mental health.
25/12/2148m 16s

A John Waters Christmas / Susannah McCorkle

Terry Gross spoke to John Waters in 2004 upon the release of his album 'A John Waters Christmas,' collecting some entertaining and ridiculous Christmas records. Waters is famous for his films 'Pink Flamingos' and 'Hairspray.' Also, we'll listen to rock historian Ed Ward's 1992 review of the novelty Christmas recordings the Beatles sent their fan club. Finally, we'll hear the late Susannah McCorkle's 1988 Christmas concert.
24/12/2146m 19s

The Sprawling Capitol Riot Investigation

HuffPost senior justice reporter Ryan J. Reilly says "sedition hunters" have used videos, social media posts and facial recognition software to identify individuals who participated in the storming of the Capitol on Jan. 6. He talks with Terry Gross about the FBI investigation, and the trials of the accused. Also, Justin Chang reviews the new movie 'The Tragedy of Macbeth,' starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand.
23/12/2145m 44s

Penélope Cruz

Cruz stars in Pedro Almodóvar's new film 'Parallel Mothers.' She plays Janis, a single woman around the age of 40, who unintentionally became pregnant. Janis is thrilled to be pregnant, but in the maternity ward, she's roommates with a teenager who is very unhappy about having a baby. Cruz spoke with Terry Gross about how emotional the film was to make, and her own experience of becoming a mother.Justin Chang shares his favorite films of the year, and Kevin Whitehead remembers jazz greats we lost in 2021.
22/12/2145m 32s

Life In A Sex Cult

Faith Jones' grandfather founded the Children of God, also known as The Family. She was taught sex was a service to God and that women and girls should freely "share" their bodies, regardless of whether they want to. She spoke with Terry Gross about growing up in a cult and how she eventually left it behind. Her memoir is Sex Cult Nun.Also, John Powers reviews Vigil, a new thriller series about a murder investigation on a submarine, now on Peacock.
21/12/2146m 21s

Alan Cumming Unpacks His 'Baggage'

The Tony Award-winning actor (Cabaret) previously wrote about his childhood in Scotland and his abusive father. Cumming's new memoir centers on love, sexuality, career and mental health. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Sea State by Tabitha Lasley.
20/12/2146m 14s

Best Of: Rethinking How We Work / Memoirist Grace M. Cho

Journalist Anne Helen Petersen, co-author of 'Out of Office,' talks about how the pandemic has changed the way many of us work, and the opportunity we have to create a more sustainable work model. Maureen Corrigan shares her list of best books of the year. Writer Grace M. Cho tells the story of her mother's descent into mental illness, and her own quest to understand her family's past. Her memoir is called, 'Tastes Like War.'
18/12/2149m 6s

J.R. Moehringer / Remembering Anne Rice & Greg Tate

J.R. Moehringer grew up with an absent dad and found a home, of sorts, in the bar where his uncle worked. His memoir, 'The Tender Bar,' has been adapted into a film directed by George Clooney. Writer Anne Rice, who died Dec. 11, grew up in New Orleans and hit it big in 1976 with her first novel, 'Interview with the Vampire.' She followed up with more than a dozen novels. Rice spoke with Terry Gross in 1990.Also, we remember culture critic Greg Tate. His whirlwind writing appeared in 'The Village Voice' and 'Rolling Stone,' often referencing pop culture, literary theory and the latest slang. Tate made an impact on New York's cultural scene in the '80s, at a time when the city was full of aspiring rappers and writers, disco DJs and punk rockers. He died Dec. 7.
17/12/2147m 6s

Why Child Care Is The Most Broken Business In The U.S.

Bloomberg Businessweek journalist Claire Suddath explains why child care is so unaffordable in the U.S. and why attempts to provide federal funding for care keep failing in Congress.
16/12/2145m 38s

Life On The International Space Station

The six-part Disney+ documentary series 'Among the Stars' gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look at NASA as it prepares missions on the ground and executes them aboard the International Space Station. One of the astronauts featured on the series is Chris Cassidy. Our producer Sam Briger spoke to the now-retired astronaut about his time in NASA and on the space station.Also, rock critic Ken Tucker shares his stand-out picks for music of the year.
15/12/2146m 26s

A Daughter's Search To Understand Her Mother's Schizophrenia

Writer Grace M. Cho tells the story of her mother's descent into mental illness, and her own quest to understand her family's past. Cho emigrated to the U.S. as a baby with her Korean mother and American Merchant Marine father. Living in a small town in the northwest, Cho says they endured racist taunts, threats and assaults. After her mother developed symptoms of schizophrenia, Cho learned more about her mother's hardships growing up under Japanese occupation, through the Korean War, and afterward in a shattered Korean economy. Cho would learn her mother was likely a sex worker catering to American personnel stationed in Korea. Her mother's traumas, Cho believed, likely contributed to her mental illness. Her memoir is called, Tastes Like War.
14/12/2146m 43s

Rethinking The Way We Work

The pandemic forced offices and businesses to shutter abruptly, fundamentally transforming the way people work. Essential workers remained on the front lines, but millions of others lost their jobs. And journalist Anne Helen Petersen estimates that some 42 percent of Americans began to work remotely. Now, with vaccines and boosters broadly available in the U.S., employers are beginning to craft return-to-office plans — but many employees want to retain flexibility. We talk with journalist Anne Helen Petersen, co-author of 'Out of Office,' about the way the pandemic has changed the way many of us work, and the opportunity we have to create a more sustainable work model. Maureen Corrigan shares her top 10 books of the year.
13/12/2147m 3s

Best Of: Mel Brooks / Kieran Culkin

Filmmaker and comedy legend Mel Brooks sits down with Terry Gross to talk about Jewish humor and the meaning of life. He's got a new memoir called All About Me! Film critic Justin Chang reviews the new Steven Spielberg adaptation of West Side Story. And Kieran Culkin, who co-stars in HBO's Succession as Roman Roy, one of the three adult siblings vying to take over their family's media conglomerate, talks about his role and the toxicity of fame.
11/12/2149m 45s

Celebrating 'West Side Story'

Film critic Justin Chang reviews Steven Spielberg's new film adaptation of West Side Story, and, from our archive, interviews with two actors who won Oscars for their performances in the 1961 film: Rita Moreno, who played Anita, and George Chakiris who played Bernardo, the leader of the Sharks. Also, we remember Sen. Bob Dole, who died Dec. 5. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2005 about serving in WWII. And John Powers shares a list of things that surprised and delighted him in 2021.
10/12/2148m 28s

The Possible End Of American Democracy As We Know It

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Barton Gellman says the Republican party is increasingly unwilling to accept defeat and, in fact, is "prepared to win by sacrificing the essential elements of democracy." His new Atlantic article is 'Trump's Next Coup Has Already Begun.'Ken Tucker shares his thoughts on Adele's hugely successful new album, 30.
09/12/2145m 44s

Halle Berry

Berry makes her directorial debut with Bruised on Netflix. She stars in the film as disgraced mixed martial arts fighter named Jackie Justice, who takes on MMA's newest star. Berry talks with guest interviewer Tonya Mosley about breaking ribs and continuing to shoot, being a lifelong fighter, and the lack of roles for Black women in Hollywood for much of her career. Also, David Bianculli reviews Aaron Sorkin's new film about Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, Being the Ricardos. And Kevin Whitehead reviews Craig Taborn's recording, Shadow Plays.
08/12/2146m 41s

Mel Brooks

Brooks sits down with Terry Gross to talk about Jewish humor, therapy, and the meaning of life. He's got a new memoir called 'All About Me!' Also, Justin Chang reviews 'Drive My Car,' by Japanese director Ryûsuke Hamaguchi.
07/12/2146m 4s

Kieran Culkin On 'Succession' & Child Stardom

Culkin co-stars in HBO's Succession, as Roman, the youngest of the Roy siblings competing for control of the family media conglomerate. We talk about how he got the role, learning from the ensemble cast, and witnessing child stardom via his brother, 'Home Alone' star Macaulay Culkin.
06/12/2146m 16s

Remembering Sondheim (Part III)

On the final day of our tribute to Stephen Sondheim, we'll hear from people who worked with him, including James Lapine, who wrote the books for three Sondheim musicals: 'Sunday in the Park with George,' 'Into the Woods' and 'Passion'; music director Paul Gemignani, and Stephen Colbert and Lin-Manuel Miranda who each performed in Sondheim musicals.
03/12/2146m 53s

Remembering Sondheim (Part II)

Stephen Sondheim fans, like Terry Gross, always wonder: How did he write those brilliant lyrics? His 2010 book, Finishing the Hat, provided a lot of answers. It collected his lyrics from 1954 to 1981, telling the stories behind the songs. In the second part of our remembrance, we're revisiting a 2010 interview with the Broadway legend in which he gave his take on other great lyricists — and some of whose lyrics he thinks aren't really so great.
02/12/2147m 30s

Remembering Stephen Sondheim (Part I)

The legendary lyricist and composer who gave us 'Sweeney Todd,' 'Into the Woods,' 'Company,' 'Sunday in the Park with George' and other shows died last Friday at 91. We are doing a three-part remembrance of him. In 2010 he spoke with Terry Gross about his writing process, from rhyming to finding the right note.
01/12/2148m 11s

Rebecca Hall On 'Passing'

Hall's new Netflix film centers on two light-skinned Black women — one of whom passes for white. The story is a personal one for Hall: Her grandfather and mother were Black and passed as white. Hall talks about her own family history, the burden of secrets, and her experience directing. Also, Lloyd Schwartz reviews the new Criterion release of a documentary about making of the original cast album for Stephen Sondheim's 'Company.'
30/11/2146m 31s

The Story Of The Boeing 737 MAX

Investigative reporter Peter Robison chronicles the tragic story of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in his new book, 'Flying Blind.' He says Boeing failed to warn pilots that new software in the plane could cause its nose to repeatedly pitch down, a malfunction that led to two deadly crashes in the space of five months. Robison says the 737 MAX disaster is at its heart the story of a corporate culture that prized profits and shareholder value over quality and safety — and of federal regulators more committed to serving the airline industry than protecting the public. TV critic David Bianculli reviews the three-part Disney+ docuseries about The Beatles, 'Get Back.'
29/11/2147m 10s

Best Of: Dave Grohl / Will Smith

Grohl talks about his journey from playing small punk clubs to giant stadiums in his new memoir, 'The Storyteller.' He reflects on how he taught himself drums, his friendship with Kurt Cobain, and reinventing himself after Cobain's death with Foo Fighters.Also, Justin Chang reviews the new Jane Campion movie 'The Power of the Dog.' And Smith speaks with guest interviewer Tonya Mosley about how he crafted a joyful image to cover up for a trauma that happened when he was 9. He saw his father beat his mother. He reflects on how that moment has impacted his life. He has a new movie 'King Richard,' and a memoir called 'Will.'
27/11/2150m 14s

Stanley Tucci / Julia Child

With Thanksgiving, the season of cooking, eating, and getting together has begun. Tucci has published two cookbooks and hosted a CNN series about regional cuisine in Italy. Now he has a new memoir, 'Taste,' about his experiences with good food and cooking. Also, the one and only Julia Child, recorded in 2009.Finally, Justin Chang reviews the new Paul Thomas Anderson movie 'Licorice Pizza.'
26/11/2145m 35s

Sir Paul McCartney

Paul McCartney talks about his life through some of his songs. His new two-volume book collects his lyrics and the stories behind them. We'll also talk about the new documentary, 'Get Back,' which has previously unseen footage from the period The Beatles wrote, rehearsed and recorded the songs on their album 'Let it Be.' The album was released just after The Beatles broke up.
25/11/2146m 49s

Dave Grohl On Nirvana & Foo Fighters

Grohl talks about his journey from playing small punk clubs to giant stadiums in his new memoir, 'The Storyteller.' He reflects on how he taught himself drums, his friendship with Kurt Cobain, and reinventing himself after Cobain's death. "I was heartbroken," he says. "I didn't really know if I ever wanted to play music again, until I realized that music was the one thing that had healed me my entire life." Grohl joined us from his studio, and also played a few songs.
24/11/2145m 52s

Remembering 'Schoolhouse Rock!' Songwriter Dave Frishberg

Frishberg was a prolific jazz composer, lyricist, and vocalist, best known for his songs on the series 'Schoolhouse Rock!,' such as "I'm Just a Bill." He died Nov. 17 at age 88. Many of his songs were witty, including "I'm Hip" and "My Attorney Bernie." But he also wrote beautiful ballads, like "Heart's Desire" and "You are There." Frishberg came to the 'Fresh Air' studio in 1998 to play some of his songs and talk about them.
23/11/2146m 34s

Former Gun Industry Insider On His Battle Against The NRA

'Gunfight' author Ryan Busse was once a rising star in the gun industry. But he became disillusioned after Columbine when, he says, the NRA began to use "fear and conspiracy and hatred" to bolster sales. Busse talks about turning points within the NRA and his career, and the state of the industry today. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews 'The Sinner and the Saint,' a new book about experiences in Dostoyevsky's life that led to his classic novel 'Crime and Punishment.'
22/11/2146m 51s

Best Of: Dogsledder Blair Braverman / '1619 Project' Creator Nikole Hannah-Jones

Writer Blair Braverman takes us inside the world of dog mushing. Braverman and her racing partner / husband Quince Mountain have a book, 'Dogs on the Trail,' that profiles their team of Alaskan huskies. We talk about the Iditarod race and her experience on the Discovery reality show 'Naked and Afraid.'We also talk with Nikole Hannah-Jones, who created the '1619 Project,' marking the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery, when a ship carrying enslaved Africans landed in the British colony of Virginia. It started as a 'New York Times Magazine' edition and is now a book called 'The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story.' Hannah-Jones won a Pulitzer Prize for her essay in the project.And David Bianculli reviews a new documentary about Kurt Vonnegut that was almost 40 years in the making.
20/11/2148m 54s

Choreographer Twyla Tharp / Photographer Gordon Parks

Twyla Tharp is one of the most celebrated and innovative dancers and choreographers of our time. Her work combines ballet, modern dance, jazz, tap, and other dance forms in a way that was initially considered radical. She's the subject of a recent PBS 'American Masters' documentary. Also, we revisit our interview with Gordon Parks, the photographer who chronicled the Black experience in 'Life' magazine. He also was the first Black director of a Hollywood film. He's the subject of a new documentary.Justin Chang reviews the new gothic Western 'The Power of the Dog' by director Jane Campion.
19/11/2146m 52s

Why The Autocrats Are Winning

Historian and 'Atlantic' journalist Anne Applebaum talks about how authoritarian rulers have joined together, creating a network of economic and political support that counteracts the impact of sanctions, while suppressing the spread of democracy. Also, John Powers reviews HBO Max's comedy series 'Sort Of.'
18/11/2146m 28s

Nikole Hannah-Jones On 'The 1619 Project'

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones says the contributions of Black people are often left out of the American story. Her mission, with 'The 1619 Project,' is to reframe U.S. history through the lens of slavery. She spoke with contributor Arun Venugopal about the project, the term "woke," and how she handles the backlash to her work. David Bianculli reviews the IFC documentary 'Kurt Vonnegut: Unstuck in Time.'
17/11/2146m 1s

Dogsledder Blair Braverman

Braverman says you never ask a musher how many dogs they have, because between puppies, fosters and retirees, you'll never get a straight answer. "The secret" she says, "is to ask, 'How many dogs are you feeding?'" For Braverman, that number right now is 24. Braverman and her racing partner / husband Quince Mountain have a book, 'Dogs on the Trail,' that profiles their team of Alaskan huskies. We talk about the Iditarod race, her dogs' personalities, and her experience on the Discovery reality show 'Naked and Afraid.' Also, Ken Tucker reviews 'Breaking Point' by Jackson+Sellers.
16/11/2144m 53s

Dawn Turner On Race, Fate & Sisterhood

How do two sisters, just 3 years apart, take extremely divergent paths in life? That's the story Dawn Turner tells in her new memoir, 'Three Girls of Bronzeville.' Turner grew up to be an author and a columnist at The 'Chicago Tribune.' Her sister Kim died of chronic alcoholism at age 24. Turner's childhood best friend Debra was convicted of murder and served over 20 years in prison. Film critic Justin Chang reviews 'Belfast,' Kenneth Branagh's semi-autobiographical film about growing up in Northern Ireland during the Troubles.
15/11/2145m 30s

Best Of: Andie MacDowell / Gary Shteyngart

Actor Andie MacDowell co-stars opposite her daughter Margaret Qualley in the Netflix series 'Maid.' We talk about how her own mother's struggle with alcohol addiction and mental illness helped her understand her character, as well as her early films, like 'Groundhog Day' and 'Sex, Lies, and Videotape.'Maureen Corrigan reviews Louise Erdrich's new book, 'The Sentence.' Gary Shteyngart's new novel, 'Our Country Friends,' is about a group of eight friends who hole up in the country home of a Russian-born writer. He drew on his experience of his pandemic pod for the book.
13/11/2148m 48s

Remembering Vietnam Veteran & Former Senator Max Cleland

We remember former Georgia senator Max Cleland, the Vietnam War vet and triple amputee who rebuilt his life after the war, but later lost his Senate seat when Republicans, led by Karl Rove, questioned his patriotism. Cleland died Tuesday at the age of 79.Also, we talk about the battle to keep independent local journalism alive in small-town America. A new PBS documentary profiles 'The Storm Lake Times,' which serves a rural community in northwest Iowa. We hear from the editor, Art Cullen.Justin Chang reviews 'Belfast,' Kenneth Branagh's autobiographical film, shot in black and white.
12/11/2147m 4s

A Marine Reflects On War, Love & Finding Purpose

Elliot Ackerman served five tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, during which time, he says, he witnessed the absolute worst — as well as the absolute best — that human beings are capable of. Ackerman is also a journalist, novelist, memoirist and National Book Award nominee. This Veterans Day we talk about the lure of war, how war gave him a sense of purpose, the fear and heartbreak that went along with it, and the search for meaning when he stopped fighting. His Silver Star is for leading a platoon in the Battle of Fallujah in Iraq.
11/11/2145m 55s

Will Smith

The blockbuster movie star, comedian and musician spoke with guest interviewer Tonya Mosley about how he crafted a joyful image to cover up for a trauma that happened when he was 9. He saw his father beat his mother. He reflects on how that moment has impacted his life, how he and his family have worked through this history, and his own parenting style. He has a new memoir called 'Will.' Also, podcast critic Nick Quah reviews Spotify's 'Music + Talk.'
10/11/2145m 32s

The Impact Of Trump's 3 Supreme Court Picks

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Linda Greenhouse says the new Court has given conservatives less than they'd hoped for, though critical cases on abortion and other issues are still pending. Her book is 'Justice on the Brink.'Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Louise Erdrich's new novel, 'The Sentence.'
09/11/2146m 44s

Andie MacDowell

MacDowell co-stars opposite her daughter Margaret Qualley in the Netflix series 'Maid.' We talk about how her own mother's struggle with alcohol addiction and mental illness helped her understand her character, her early films (like 'Groundhog Day' and 'Sex, Lies, and Videotape'), and embracing her wrinkles and gray hair. Also, David Bianculli reviews 'Dexter: New Blood' on Showtime.
08/11/2147m 16s

Best Of: Paul McCartney / Filmmaker Edgar Wright

Paul McCartney talks about his life through some of his songs. His new two-volume book collects his lyrics and the stories behind them. We'll also talk about the new documentary, 'Get Back,' which has previously unseen footage from the period The Beatles wrote, rehearsed and recorded the songs on their album 'Let it Be.' The album was released just after The Beatles broke up.TV critic David Bianculli reviews the revival of Dexter, called 'Dexter: New Blood.'Edgar Wright, director of 'Baby Driver' and 'Shaun of the Dead,' talks about his new thriller, 'Last Night in Soho.' It's about a young woman who is transported in her dreams into the swinging '60s of London: "The film is sort of about having nostalgia for a decade that you never lived in." Wright spoke with 'Fresh Air' producer Sam Briger about venturing back to the '60s.
06/11/2149m 15s

British Actor Terence Stamp

Terence Stamp, who became an icon in London in the 1960s, is now in the film 'Last Night in Soho,' a ghost story that takes place, in part, in '60s swinging London. Stamp grew up in poverty in London and was one of the first working class British actors to make it in theatre. He's known for his film roles in 'Billy Budd,' 'Far From the Madding Crowd,' and 'The Collector,' as well as '90s films like 'The Limey' and 'Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.' Terry Gross talked with him in 2002.Film critic Justin Chang reviews 'Spencer,' starring Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana.
05/11/2146m 32s

Before, During & After The Jan. 6 Attack On The Capitol

Why did our intelligence agencies — the FBI, the Capitol Police, the Secret Service — all fail to protect the Capitol from being attacked on January 6th? We talk with Carol Leonnig, a 'Washington Post' National Investigative Correspondent, who contributed to this week's three part series in the 'Post' investigating what happened before, during and after the Capitol siege. She'll tell us how Trump froze in place key federal agencies whose job it was to investigate and stop threats to national security. Leonnig is also the co-author of two books about the Trump presidency: 'A Very Stable Genius,' and 'I Alone Can Fix It,' as well as a recent book about the rise and fall of the Secret Service.
04/11/2145m 8s

Paul McCartney

The 1969 film 'Let It Be' created the impression that McCartney was responsible for The Beatles' disbanding. Now, the forthcoming Disney+ documentary 'Get Back' revisits the same time — and tells a different story. McCartney spoke with Terry Gross about his songwriting process with John Lennon, the early years of Beatlemania, and how the band broke up. He also has a new book called 'The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present.'
03/11/2146m 31s

Gary Shteyngart On His Pandemic Novel

There's the saying "write what you know," and Gary Shteyngart did just that. His new novel, 'Our Country Friends' is about a group of eight friends who hole up in the country home of a Russian-born writer. He drew on his experience of his pandemic pod for the book. We'll also talk about his work as a consultant on the HBO series 'Succession,' and the botched circumcision that left him with debilitating pain. Maureen Corrigan reviews 'My Monticello' by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson.
02/11/2145m 19s

Filmmaker Edgar Wright On 'Last Night in Soho'

Wright's new movie, 'Last Night in Soho,' centers on a young woman who is transported in her dreams into the swinging '60s of London: "The film is sort of about having nostalgia for a decade that you never lived in." Wright spoke with 'Fresh Air' producer Sam Briger about the soundtrack, his vision of the '60s, and working with late actress Diana Rigg. Justin Chang reviews 'The Souvenir Part II.'
01/11/2146m 15s

Best Of: Oscar Isaac / Katie Couric

Oscar Isaac stars in the latest Paul Schrader movie, 'The Card Counter,' co-starred with Jessica Chastain in HBO's limited series 'Scenes from a Marriage,' and now is one of the stars of 'Dune.' We'll talk about growing up in an evangelical Christian family that was preparing for the apocalypse and how the death of his mother was quickly followed by the birth of his first child. John Powers reviews the new documentary 'The Velvet Underground.'Former 'Today Show' anchor Katie Couric spoke with Terry Gross about her early career in news and why she's done trying to appeal to everyone. "My goal in life isn't to please people anymore. ... I think if you're just likable, you're not very interesting," she says. Her new memoir is 'Going There.'
30/10/2148m 41s

Ricky Jay / Remembering Peter Scolari

This week Sotheby's auctioned off The Ricky Jay collection — a portion of the rare books, posters, and objects chronicling the world of magic, carnivals and eccentric characters — which the master sleight-of-hand artist had collected over his life. We're revisiting portions of our interviews with Ricky Jay. Also, we remember comic actor Peter Scolari, best-known for his roles in the 1980s TV sitcoms 'Bosom Buddies,' opposite Tom Hanks, and 'Newhart,' with Bob Newhart. Scolari died last week at the age of 66.John Powers reviews the new Netflix movie 'Passing.'
29/10/2146m 58s

The Capitol Insurrection & Why Our Democracy Is In Peril

Robert Costa's book 'Peril,' which he co-wrote with Bob Woodward, goes inside Trump's "war room" on the eve of the Jan. 6 insurrection. Costa reports on Trump's calls to his team, the tension between Pence and the president, and the ongoing threat to our democracy. The strategy of calling for an alternate slate of electors didn't work in January, but next election it might. "Imagine if in January 2025 Republicans are much more organized and they have alternate slates of electors ready in many states. What happens then?"
28/10/2145m 45s

Inside The Attica Prison Uprising

A new documentary goes behind the walls of the deadly 1971 uprising. More than a thousand prisoners organized to overtake the notorious prison, hold guards hostage, and use them as a bargaining chip to get better living conditions. Filmmaker Stanley Nelson and former prisoner Arthur Harrison reflect on the five-day revolt, and its lasting legacy. The film is 'Attica.' Kevin Whitehead reviews 'Skyline,' an album featuring trio Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Jack DeJohnette and Ron Carter.
27/10/2146m 11s

Katie Couric

The former 'Today Show' anchor spoke with Terry Gross about her early career in news, the allegations against her former co-anchor Matt Lauer, and why she's done trying to appeal to everyone. "My goal in life isn't to please people anymore. ... I think if you're just likable, you're not very interesting," she says. Her new memoir is 'Going There.' Also, Ken Tucker reviews a new collection of Beach Boys tracks called 'Feel Flows.'
26/10/2146m 54s

Actor Jonathan Majors

Majors was nominated for an Emmy this year for his role in the HBO series, 'Lovecraft Country.' He co-starred in 'The Last Black Man in San Francisco,' the Spike Lee film 'Da 5 Bloods,' and the Marvel TV series 'Loki.' Now, he's starring in the Jay-Z-produced Western, 'The Harder They Fall,' featuring an all-Black cast. Majors talks with NPR's Audie Cornish about being raised by a single mother who was a preacher, what he learned studying Shakespeare and August Wilson, and his thoughts on two beloved actors he worked with who died young — Chadwick Boseman and Michael K. Williams.Maureen Corrigan will review the new suspense novel by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Louise Perry.
25/10/2146m 53s

Best Of: Billy Porter / Cynthia Erivo

Billy Porter has an Emmy for his starring role on 'Pose,' and a Tony for his lead role in the Broadway musical 'Kinky Boots.' Fourteen years after his initial diagnosis, Porter announced publicly that he is HIV-positive. He says being open about his health status felt like a rebirth: "I set myself free, honey. No more secrets." His new memoir is 'Unprotected.'Cynthia Erivo was nominated for an Oscar for playing Harriet Tubman in the film 'Harriet.' She played Aretha Franklin in the series 'Genius: Aretha.' She won a Tony for her performance in 'The Color Purple.' Now she has a debut album, 'Ch. 1 Vs. 1.' "I sing often with a bit of a smile," she says.
23/10/2148m 40s

Lenny Kravitz On His Early Years

Kravitz talks about growing up the son of a Jewish father and Black mother, finding his musical style, and how Lisa Bonet changed him as a songwriter. His memoir about his life up until his breakout album is 'Let Love Rule.'Also, Justin Chang reviews 'Dune.'
22/10/2147m 4s

Oscar Isaac

The actor is now starring in 'Dune,' 'The Card Counter' and 'Scenes from a Marriage.' We talk about his latest projects, grief and fatherhood, and his evangelical Christian upbringing. "We grew up with a very, very real sense of the impending doom of the apocalypse," he says.
21/10/2144m 46s

Remembering YA Author Gary Paulsen

The Newbery Award-winning author, who died Oct. 13, wrote over 200 books, many of which were tales of adventure aimed at young adults. In 1994, Paulsen talked about Alaska's Iditarod dog sled race.Also, John Powers reviews Todd Haynes' documentary about The Velvet Underground.
20/10/2147m 31s

Billy Porter On His New Memoir 'Unprotected'

Porter has an Emmy for his starring role on 'Pose,' and a Tony for his lead role in the Broadway musical 'Kinky Boots.' Fourteen years after his initial diagnosis, Porter announced publicly that he is HIV-positive. He says being open about his health status felt like a rebirth: "I set myself free, honey. No more secrets." His new memoir is 'Unprotected.'
19/10/2145m 24s

Actress And Singer Cynthia Erivo / Remembering Colin Powell

Erivo was nominated for an Oscar for playing Harriet Tubman in the film 'Harriet.' She played Aretha Franklin in the series 'Genius: Aretha.' She won a Tony for her performance in 'The Color Purple.' Now she has a debut album, 'Ch. 1 Vs. 1.' "I sing often with a bit of a smile," she says.Also, we remember Colin Powell, who died Oct. 18 at age 84. Powell was the U.S.'s first Black national security advisor, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and secretary of state. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1995.
18/10/2145m 28s

Best Of: Questlove / Tuba Player Richard Antoine White

In his new book, 'Music is History,' Roots co-founder Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson moves year-by-year through his life, writing about memories and turning points, and the songs he was listening to at the time.Richard Antoine White spent his early childhood in poverty in Baltimore, at times sleeping in abandoned houses. He's now principal tubist in the Santa Fe Symphony and the New Mexico Philharmonic. He recounts his triumph over adversity in a new memoir called 'I'm Possible.'
16/10/2149m 48s

'Maid' Author Stephanie Land

Stephanie Land's memoir, 'Maid,' is about her struggle to make ends meet as a single mom while cleaning houses and relying on government assistance. Land, who left an abusive relationship and was homeless, talks about how she got out of poverty, went back to school and pursued writing. Her book was adapted into a Netflix series, streaming now.
15/10/2145m 49s

Pandora Papers, Explained

Dictators, oligarchs, drug traffickers, crooks, and others with ill-gotten fortunes can hide their money from public scrutiny, creditors, and from the law — while at the same time avoid paying taxes. How? By stashing the wealth in opaque, complicated financial instruments in other countries. It's called offshoring. We talk with 'Washington Post' reporter Greg Miller about what the some 12 million documents of the Pandora Papers tell us about these hidden assets.
14/10/2144m 55s

Tubist Richard Antoine White's Unlikely Path To The Stage

Richard Antoine White spent his early childhood in poverty in Baltimore, at times sleeping in abandoned houses. He's now principal tubist in the Santa Fe Symphony and the New Mexico Philharmonic. He recounts his triumph over adversity in a new memoir called 'I'm Possible.'
13/10/2145m 26s

Questlove On The Soundtrack Of His Life

In his new book, 'Music is History,' Roots co-founder Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson moves year-by-year through his life, writing about memories and turning points, and the songs he was listening to at the time.
12/10/2145m 24s

Inside The Thailand Cave Rescue

In June 2018, the world held its breath for 18 days as a group of elite cave divers risked everything to rescue 12 boys and their coach from an underwater cave in Thailand. The Oscar-winning filmmakers ('Free Solo') Jimmy Chin and Chai Vasarhelyi secured hours of never-before-seen footage from the underwater rescue. The filmmakers and diver Rick Stanton spoke about how an expert team of cave divers, Thai Navy SEALs and an international group of special service members and volunteers pulled off the harrowing mission and got all 12 boys and their coach to safety. The documentary is 'The Rescue.'
11/10/2145m 45s

Best Of: The World Of Film Noir / Stanley Tucci

Eddie Muller hosts the TCM series 'Noir Alley.' A new expanded edition of his book, 'Dark City,' chronicles film noir from the '40s and '50s. We talk about the sexiness of the genre and why film noir flourished in the post-WWII era.David Bianculli reviews the Sopranos prequel film, 'The Many Saints of Newark.'Stanley Tucci's entire world, since childhood, has revolved around food. The actor was devastated when treatment for cancer put him on a feeding tube for six months. Now cancer free, his sense of smell and taste is stronger than before. Tucci's new memoir about his life and food is 'Taste.'
09/10/2148m 48s

Nick Lowe In Concert

Lowe's 2001 album 'The Convincer,' considered by many fans and critics to be his best, has now been remastered and reissued. We listen back to his performances and interviews in our studio from 2001 and 2011. Lowe's best known songs include "Cruel To Be Kind" and "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding" which Elvis Costello made famous.Critic Justin Chang reviews 'No Time to Die,' the fifth and final film starring Daniel Craig as James Bond.
08/10/2146m 0s

Life In Afghanistan Now

Award-winning Afghan British journalist Najibullah Quraishi is on the ground in Kabul where he has been interviewing Taliban leaders and fighters, women who have lost their rights, and citizens trying to escape. He believes that the country is on the brink of civil war. Quraishi is the correspondent for the forthcoming Frontline PBS documentary, 'Taliban Takeover.'
07/10/2144m 37s

Fiona Hill, Former White House Russia Expert & Key Witness

Hill was a key witness at President Trump's first impeachment hearing. Now she's warning about the threat to American democracy that comes from within. We talk about her testimony, advising Trump on calls with Putin, and why she believes America is headed towards autocracy. Her memoir is 'There is Nothing For You Here.'
06/10/2144m 45s

Stanley Tucci

Tucci's entire world, since childhood, has revolved around food. The actor was devastated when treatment for cancer put him on a feeding tube for six months. Now cancer free, his sense of small and taste is stronger than before. Tucci's new memoir about his life and food is 'Taste.' David Bianculli reviews the 'Sopranos' prequel, 'The Many Saints of Newark.'
05/10/2145m 55s

The Lost World Of Film Noir

Eddie Muller hosts the TCM series 'Noir Alley.' A new expanded edition of his book, 'Dark City,' chronicles film noir from the '40s and '50s. We talk about the femme fatale, the sexiness of the genre, and why film noir flourished in the post-WWII era. Kevin Whitehead reviews a live recording by jazz trumpeter Lee Morgan.
04/10/2147m 31s

Best Of: Anita Hill / Ben Platt

It's been 30 years since the Clarence Thomas confirmation hearings, where Anita HIll testified he'd sexually harassed her. We'll talk about the hearings, and how they changed her life.Her memoir is 'Believing.' Also we talk with Ben Platt, star of the hit broadway musical 'Dear Evan Hansen' and of the new film adaptation. Platt plays a high school senior overcome by his insecurities and social anxiety. We'll talk about going back to the role and separating his own anxieties from those plaguing his character.Ken Tucker will review a new Beach Boys collection.
02/10/2148m 43s

Remembering Melvin Van Peebles, Godfather of Black Film

Melvin Van Peebles, considered the Godfather of Black cinema, died last week. He's best known for his 1971 film, 'Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song.' We listen back to archival interviews with Peebles and his son Mario. And we remember Bishop John Shelby Spong, who died earlier this month. In 1977, he became one of the first American bishops to ordain a woman into the clergy. In 1989, he was the first to ordain an openly gay man. David Bianculli reviews the new Netflix series 'Maid.'
01/10/2146m 49s

What's Happening At The U.S.-Mexico Border?

'Atlantic' immigration reporter Caitlin Dickerson talks about Haitian immigrants at the border, and explains how both Trump and Biden immigration policies are based on a racist system created by the Founding Fathers. "The story of the United States being a nation of immigrants is much more complex than we often discuss and acknowledge as a country," Dickerson says. She explains how the legacy of racist immigration law is very much alive today. Also, Ken Tucker reviews remixed Pere Ubu albums.
30/09/2146m 46s

'Me Too' Founder Tarana Burke

Burke says society often ignores Black girls' sexual trauma — and that the R. Kelly trial, coming after 25 years of allegations, highlights the "stark difference" in response to victims of color. "We are socialized to respond to the vulnerability of white women," she says. "[There's a] stark difference in what it takes to get attention around Black women and girls." Burke's new memoir, 'Unbound,' is about her activism and her own experience with sexual violence and healing. She spoke with guest interviewer Tonya Mosley.
29/09/2145m 41s

Anita Hill

In 1991, Anita Hill testified that Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her. Thomas was confirmed regardless. Since then, another Supreme Court justice, Brett Kavanaugh, has joined the bench, despite Christine Blasey Ford's testimony that he sexually assaulted her. We talk with Hill about how her life and work has changed over the last 30 years, how she wants the confirmation process to change, and President Biden's apology for how she was treated in the '91 hearings. Her new memoir is 'Believing.' "There is victory in being able to come forward and state what has happened to you," she says. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Anthony Doerr's new novel, 'Cloud Cuckoo Land.'
28/09/2144m 52s

Ben Platt

Platt stars in 'Dear Evan Hansen,' the film adaptation of the Broadway musical. He originated the role. We talk about anxiety, falling in love with another 'Evan Hansen' actor, and his upcoming project with Richard Linklater, filming a musical over the course of 20 years.
27/09/2144m 16s

Best Of: B.J. Novak / Colson Whitehead

B.J. Novak played Ryan on 'The Office' and served as a writer and an executive producer of the series. His new FX/Hulu anthology show, 'The Premise,' deals with important cultural issues, like social justice, sex tapes, guns, and how we're shaped by social media. We talk about Novak's early stand-up and his friendship with Mindy Kaling.Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews the reboots of 'The Wonder Years' and 'Scenes from a Marriage.' Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Colson Whitehead's new book, 'Harlem Shuffle,' is about a furniture store owner in Harlem whose sideline is fencing stolen goods. We talk about heists, how New York City has changed, and writing in the pandemic.
25/09/2148m 54s

Ray Charles On Country Music

Last month, Ray Charles was voted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. That may sound odd to you since he's such a pivotal figure in soul music and rhythm & blues. But his 1962 album, 'Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music,' became one of his best known records, and included two of his biggest hits, "I Can't Stop Loving You" and "You Don't Know Me." Charles spoke with Terry Gross in 1998. Also, John Powers reviews two thriller films: 'Wife of a Spy' and 'Azor.'
24/09/2146m 50s

The Facebook Files: What Leaked Documents Tell Us

'Wall Street Journal' reporter Jeff Horwitz says Facebook executives often choose to boost engagement at the expense of tackling problems like misinformation and mental health issues in teens that are rampant on their platforms.
23/09/2144m 47s

B.J. Novak

B.J. Novak played Ryan on 'The Office' and served as a writer and an executive producer of the series. His new FX/Hulu anthology show, 'The Premise,' deals with important cultural issues, like social justice, sex tapes, guns, and how we're shaped by social media. We talk about Novak's early stand-up, doing the MTV prank show 'Punk'd,' and his friendship with Mindy Kaling.
22/09/2145m 51s

Who Is Tech Billionaire & 'Contrarian' Peter Thiel?

Peter Thiel co-founded PayPal, invested early in Facebook, secretly funded the Hulk Hogan lawsuit that put the website Gawker out of business, and put more than a million dollars into Trump's campaign just after the appearance of the 'Access Hollywood' tapes. Thiel is also known for his interest in some unusual ideas, like independent city-states that float on the ocean, free from oppressive governments. We talk with 'Bloomsberg Businessweek' tech reporter Max Chafkin about his book on Thiel, 'The Contrarian.'Also, critic David Bianculli reviews two remakes of classic TV shows, 'The Wonder Years' and 'Scenes from a Marriage.'
21/09/2146m 0s

Evan Osnos On The 'Making Of America's Fury'

How did Americans become so divided? And how did we come so close to overturning the results of a presidential election? These are some of the questions at the heart of the new book 'Wildland,' by 'New Yorker' staff writer Evan Osnos. Osnos bookended his coverage of Trump by reporting on Trump's white nationalist support during his 2016 campaign and the attack on the capital by Trump supporters after the 2020 election. Osnos is also the author of a book about Joe Biden, and has profiled Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin. He'll offer some insights into Manchin and his complicated relationship with Biden, now that Manchin holds the key vote on infrastructure and voting rights legislation.Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews 'The Fortnight in September,' by R.C. Sherriff.
20/09/2146m 29s

Best Of: Banjo Star Béla Fleck / When Animals Break The Law

Béla Fleck is one of the most famous banjo players in the world. He's taken that instrument out of its folk and bluegrass traditions to play pretty much any kind of music, including jazz and pop to classical and reggae. But bluegrass has always been where he comes from — and he's returned to it for his new album, 'My Bluegrass Heart.'Science writer Mary Roach ('Stiff', 'Gulp') explores scenarios where animals are the ones committing "crimes" — and how society deals with it. We talk about bear attacks, drunk elephants, and monkey thieves. Her new book is 'Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law.'
18/09/2140m 27s

Jean Smart / Remembering Newport Jazz & Folk Festival Founder George Wein

Jean Smart is nominated for two Emmys — one for her lead role in 'Hacks' and one for her supporting role in 'Mare of Easttown.' We're revisiting her May 2021 interview. Pioneering music impresario George Wein created the Newport Jazz Festival in 1954 and the Newport Folk Festival in 1959. He died Sept. 13. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2003.
17/09/2146m 17s

The Battle To Keep Local Journalism Alive

In the past 15 years, one in four newspapers has shuttered in the U.S. We talk with Art Cullen, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, editor, and co-owner of 'The Storm Lake Times' in the meatpacking town of Storm Lake, Iowa. He and his family are the subject of a new documentary, called 'Storm Lake,' about the challenges the industry is facing as news moves to free digital platforms and ad revenues dwindle. The film is opening in select theaters and be on PBS Nov. 15.
16/09/2145m 4s

Colson Whitehead On His Crime Novel 'Harlem Shuffle'

Whitehead's new novel 'Harlem Shuffle,' is about a furniture store owner in Harlem whose sideline is fencing stolen goods. Whitehead won a Pulitzer Prize for his novel 'The Underground Railroad,' about a 15-year-old enslaved girl who escapes a brutal Georgia plantation. The novel was adapted into a TV series that is now nominated for several Emmys. Whitehead won another Pulitzer for his next novel 'The Nickel Boys,' based on the story of the Dozier School for Boys, a segregated reform school notorious for its brutal punishment. We talk about heists, how New York City has changed, and writing in the pandemic Justin Chang reviews the film 'Blue Bayou.'
15/09/2146m 0s

The Weird World Of Animal Crimes

Science writer Mary Roach ('Stiff', 'Gulp') explores scenarios where animals are the ones committing "crimes" — and how society deals with it. We talk about bear attacks, drunk elephants, and monkey thieves. Her new book is 'Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law.' Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews a new album from saxophonist Joel Frahm.
14/09/2146m 35s

Banjo Player Béla Fleck

Béla Fleck is perhaps the most famous banjo player in the world. He's taken that instrument out of its folk and bluegrass traditions to play pretty much any kind of music: from jazz and pop to classical and reggae. But bluegrass has always been where he comes from — and he's returned to it for his new album, 'My Bluegrass Heart.' He's dedicated it to two musical heroes that died in the last year: Chick Corea and Tony Rice. Fleck joins Sam Briger to play his banjo, and talk about returning to his roots; his trip to Africa, the continent of the banjo's origin; and meeting his father for the first time in his 40s. Ken Tucker reviews, 'Dreaming of You,' a collection of songs by actor Karen Black, best known for 'Easy Rider' and 'Five Easy Pieces.' Black died in 2013.
13/09/2148m 26s

Best Of: Michael K. Williams / Poet Laureate Joy Harjo

Michael K. Williams was best known for playing Omar on 'The Wire' and Chalky White on 'Boardwalk Empire.' He died Sept. 6 of a suspected drug overdose. In 2008, Williams told Terry Gross the story behind the scar on his face and his background in dance. In 2016, he reflected on his lucky breaks and what it was like to leave Omar behind. "When 'The Wire' and the character of Omar ended, I had zero tools, personally speaking, in how to deal with letting that go. ... I didn't equip myself with the tools of how to wash that off my psyche." Maureen Corrigan reviews Sally Rooney's new novel, 'Beautiful World, Where Are You.' Also, we hear from U.S. Poet Laureate Joy Harjo. She's the first Native American appointed to the position. She has a new memoir, 'Poet Warrior,' that's in part about her family's history. She's a member of the Muskogee (Creek) Nation.
11/09/2149m 38s

The Rise And Fall Of Osama Bin Laden

As the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks approaches, a new biography traces Osama bin Laden's path from a shy, religious teenager to the leader of a global jihadist group dedicated to mass murder. Journalist Peter Bergen, who met the al-Qaida leader in 1997, says that a series of events kept pushing bin Laden "further and further down the path of radicalization." We also talk about conditions in Afghanistan after the U.S. troop withdrawal, and the chances that terrorist organizations will flourish there as al-Qaida did in the '90s. Bergen's new book is 'The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden.'Also, Justin Chang reviews the new Paul Schrader film 'The Card Counter,' starring Oscar Isaac and Tiffany Haddish.
10/09/2146m 6s

SCOTUS & The Future Of Roe V. Wade

Ian Millhiser covers the Supreme Court for Vox. He says the Court's decision to uphold the recent Texas abortion law was a generational victory for abortion opponents: "They've spent many decades working for this moment."Maureen Corrigan reviews Sally Rooney's new novel, 'Beautiful World, Where Are You.'
09/09/2147m 4s

Remembering Michael K. Williams

Williams was best known for playing Omar on 'The Wire' and Chalky White on 'Boardwalk Empire.' In 2008, Williams told Terry Gross the story behind the scar on his face and his background in dance. In 2016, he reflected on his lucky breaks and what it was like to leave Omar behind. "When 'The Wire' and the character of Omar ended, I had zero tools, personally speaking, in how to deal with letting that go. ... I didn't equip myself with the tools of how to wash that off my psyche." Williams died Sept. 6 of a suspected drug overdose.Also, critic David Bianculli reviews the new reboot of Doogie Howser, M.D.
08/09/2147m 4s

Poet Laureate Joy Harjo / Historian Tiya Miles

The nation's first Native American poet laureate has a new memoir in which she tells her own story — as well as the story of her sixth-generation grandfather, who was forced from his land in the Trail of Tears. It's called 'Poet Warrior.' "If my work does nothing else, when I get to the end of my life, I want Native peoples to be seen as human beings," she says.Historian Tiya Miles tells the story of an enslaved woman who, upon hearing that her child was being sold off, hastily packed her a cotton sack with a few personal items. That cotton bag remained in the child's possession and was passed on from one generation to the next, and at one point in the early 1900s, was inscribed with the family's tale. Eventually it ended up at the National Museum of African American History. Miles joins contributor Arun Venugopal to talk about what this story tell us about slavery. Her book is 'All That She Carried.'
07/09/2147m 42s

Mavis Staples / Gladys Knight

We conclude our Summer of Soul series with Mavis Staples and Gladys Knight, two performers featured in Questlove's documentary about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. As a teenager, Mavis Staples performed with her family in the Staple Singers, led by her father, "Pops" Staples. By the late '50s, the Staple Singers was one of the most popular gospel groups in the country. In the early '70s, they crossed over to the top of the pop charts.Gladys Knight's Motown hits with the Pips included "I heard it Through the Grapevine," "Neither One of Us," and "The End of Our Road." She had one of her biggest hits after leaving Motown: "Midnight Train to Georgia."
06/09/2148m 33s

Best Of: Sandra Oh / Aretha Franklin

Sandra Oh stars in the new comedy series 'The Chair,' as the newly appointed chair of the English department at a prestigious college-- the first woman and first person of color to hold the position. Oh co-starred in Grey's Anatomy and is currently shooting the fourth and final season of the spy thriller series 'Killing Eve.' Also, we'll listen to our 1999 interview with Aretha Franklin. She's portrayed by Jennifer Hudson in the new biopic 'Respect.' And Justin Chang reviews 'Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.' It's the first Marvel movie to feature an Asian superhero.
04/09/2149m 10s

Best Of: Sandra Oh / Aretha Franklin

Sandra Oh stars in the new comedy series 'The Chair,' as the newly appointed chair of the English department at a prestigious college-- the first woman and first person of color to hold the position. Oh co-starred in Grey's Anatomy and is currently shooting the fourth and final season of the spy thriller series 'Killing Eve.' Also, we'll listen to our 1999 interview with Aretha Franklin. She's portrayed by Jennifer Hudson in the new biopic 'Respect.' And Justin Chang reviews 'Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.' It's the first Marvel movie to feature an Asian superhero.
04/09/2147m 23s

Abbey Lincoln / Max Roach

We're continuing our "Summer of Soul" series with archival interviews with singer Abbey Lincoln and drummer Max Roach. Both were featured in the Questlove documentary about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. Abbey Lincoln started out as a seductive nightclub singer in the 1950s, but after meeting Max Roach, she started performing in a style influenced by modern jazz and the civil rights movement. She evolved into an introspective singer who wrote achingly beautiful songs about love and life. Max Roach was one of the inventors of modern jazz drumming. He helped formulate the language of bebop. In the early 1960s, he recorded some of the first jazz music inspired by the Civil Rights Movement.Also, John Powers reviews the PBS Masterpiece series 'Guilt.'
03/09/2153m 50s

B.B. King / Hugh Masekela

We're revisiting archival interviews with some of the musicians featured in the documentary 'Summer of Soul.' The film is about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, a series of free concerts which reflected changes in Black culture and politics. Today we'll hear our 1996 interviews with B.B. King, perhaps the most famous blues singer and guitarist of his generation, and our 1988 interview with Hugh Masekela, the South African trumpeter who was described in the 'New York Times' as a symbol of South Africa's anti-apartheid movement, even as he spent three decades in exile.
03/09/2147m 16s

Questlove Revives "Black Woodstock" With 'Summer Of Soul'

Today we begin our series Summer of Soul, featuring interviews from our archive with some of the performers showcased in the documentary 'Summer of Soul,' about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. The festival was a series of six concerts that reflected changes in Black music, culture and politics. Over the next few days, we'll hear interviews from our archive with B.B. King, Hugh Masekela, Gladys Knight, Mavis Staples, Max Roach and Abbey Lincoln. We start with Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, who directed the documentary. Questlove founded the band The Roots, the house band of 'The Tonight Show' and is known for his encyclopedic knowledge of hip-hop, funk, soul and R&B. Justin Chang reviews 'Shang-Chi,' Marvel's first superhero film starring an Asian lead.
01/09/2145m 29s

Celebrating Aretha Franklin, Queen Of Soul

To mark the debut of the biopic 'RESPECT,' we listen back to archival interviews with Aretha, as well as with Atlantic Records producer Jerry Wexler, and songwriter Dan Penn, who co-wrote "Do Right Woman." We'll hear about Aretha's upbringing in the church, the iconic "sock-it-to-me's" in Respect, and recording at Muscle Shoals.
31/08/2147m 24s

Sandra Oh

Oh stars as chair of the English department at a prestigious university in the Netflix series 'The Chair.' The 'Grey's Anatomy' co-star joined us to talk about her upbringing in Canada, breaking barriers for Asian women in Hollywood, and the sexual tension between her 'Killing Eve' character and the psychopath Villanelle. TV critic David Bianculli shares his first impressions of the Hulu comedy 'Only Murders in the Building,' starring Martin Short, Steve Martin and Selena Gomez as amateur sleuths.
30/08/2146m 11s

Best Of: 'Schmigadoon!' Co-Creator / How Dopamine Works

Cinco Paul loves musicals — unlike his long-time writing partner, Ken Daurio, with whom he created the new Apple TV+ satire, 'Schmigadoon!' Their series centers on a couple who become trapped in a musical town. We talk with Paul about what inspired the series. Film critic Justin Chang reviews 'CODA.' Psychiatrist Dr. Anna Lembke's new book, 'Dopamine Nation,' explores the brain's connection between pleasure and pain. It also helps explain addictions — not just to drugs and alcohol, but also to food, sex and smart phones.
28/08/2150m 16s

Remembering Chuck Close, Joe Galloway, Charlie Watts

We remember an artist, a journalist and a musician, each of whom made significant contributions to their respective fields: Known for his giant hyper-realist paintings of faces, Chuck Close was one of the leading artists of his generation. After a stroke left him partially paralyzed, he was able to keep painting. Former war correspondent Joe Galloway was the only civilian to be awarded the Medal of Valor in the Vietnam War. And Charlie Watts, the drummer for the Rolling Stones, who helped define rock 'n' roll.
27/08/2147m 9s

CNN's Clarissa Ward On The Taliban & Afghan Women

Clarissa Ward, CNN's chief international correspondent, spent 3 weeks in Afghanistan, first with the Afghan military in Kandahar, just before it fell; then in Ghazni province, in territory that was taken over by the Taliban, and in Kabul, where the Taliban were celebrating their victory. After reporting on the chaos and danger at the airport, as thousands of people tried to escape on U.S. military flights, she got on an Air Force C-17 to Doha, Qatar, along with hundreds of evacuees. We'll talk about what she learned and what she experienced.
26/08/2146m 34s

The Neuroscience Of Pleasure, Pain And Addiction

Psychiatrist Dr. Anna Lembke's new book, 'Dopamine Nation,' explores the brain's connection between pleasure and pain. It also helps explain addictions — not just to drugs and alcohol, but also to food, sex and smart phones. "Living in this modern age is very challenging," Lembke says. "We're now having to cope with: How do I live in a world in which everything is provided? And if I consume too much of it — which my reflexes compel me to do — I'm going to be even more unhappy."Maureen Corrigan reviews Yoon Choi's collection of stories 'Skinship.'
25/08/2146m 31s

The Story Of Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher

In 2018, a decorated U.S. Navy SEAL was arrested and accused of some shocking crimes. Investigators said, while Eddie Gallagher was leading a platoon of these elite commandos in the battle to retake Mosul, Iraq from ISIS, he stabbed a defenseless prisoner to death. The accusations came from SEALs in Gallagher's own platoon, who also said he was known for taking shots at civilians from his sniper's nest, and killing at least two. We talk with 'New York Times' correspondent Dave Philipps, who covered Gallagher's trial and interviewed many of the Navy SEALs who leveled the accusations against Gallagher. His new book is 'Alpha: Eddie Gallagher and the War for the Soul of the Navy SEALs.'
24/08/2146m 48s

'Schmigadoon!' Songwriter & Co-Creator Cinco Paul

Cinco Paul loves musicals — unlike his long-time writing partner, Ken Daurio, with whom he created the new Apple TV+ satire, 'Schmigadoon!' Their series centers on a couple who become trapped in a musical town. Paul talks about his songwriting process and how the Marx Brothers inspired him. Film critic Justin Chang reviews 'CODA.'
23/08/2145m 56s

Best Of: Billie Jean King / Kenan Thompson

Tennis legend Billie Jean King is known for winning a record 20 Wimbledon titles and defeating Bobby Riggs in the 1973 "Battle of the Sexes." But she's also remembered for taking on the tennis establishment and fighting for recognition and pay for women players, a high-risk undertaking that opened doors for generations of women that followed. Her new book is 'All In: An Autobiography.'TV critic David Bianculli reviews 'Nine Perfect Strangers' on Hulu. Kenan Thompson joined the 'SNL' cast in 2003, making him the longest-running cast member on the show. We'll talk about his sitcom 'Kenan' and some of his more memorable 'SNL' sketches.
21/08/2150m 0s

Tony Bennett

Tony Bennett, the singer Frank Sinatra called "the best in the business," is retiring from performing at the age of 95, after eight decades on stage and in clubs. Earlier this year it was announced he had Alzheimer's disease, diagnosed five years earlier; but he'd continued to perform. His last performance was just two weeks ago, with Lady Gaga, in sold-out shows at Radio City Music Hall in New York. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1982, 1991, and 1998.
20/08/2148m 11s

America's Failed Mission In Afghanistan: Intentions & Mistakes

The stunning collapse of the government of Afghanistan following President Biden's decision to remove U.S. troops from the country has led to chaotic scenes throughout Afghanistan, including at the airport in Kabul, where many are desperate to leave. It has also left countless Afghans wondering what the future holds as the Taliban takes control of the country. "They're frightened. They don't know what awaits them. ... It's devastating. It's a country that deserved better," 'New Yorker' staff writer Steve Coll says.
19/08/2146m 32s

Who Is Doing Your Dirty Work?

Author Eyal Press calls them "jobs of last resort" — slaughtering animals, working in prisons, engaging in remote drone combat — society needs them, but doesn't want to talk about them. Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Dream Girl,' a new suspense-thriller novel from Laura Lippman.
18/08/2146m 33s

Tennis Legend Billie Jean King

King is known for winning a record 20 Wimbledon titles and defeating Bobby Riggs in the 1973 "Battle of the Sexes." But she's also remembered for taking on the tennis establishment and fighting for recognition and pay for women players, a high-risk undertaking that opened doors for generations of women that followed. In a new memoir, King describes her battles for equity and inclusion in the game, becoming an activist for women's and LGBTQ rights, and some difficult moments in personal life, including having a closeted lesbian relationship outed in a lawsuit. Her new book is 'All In: An Autobiography.'Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews a new film about Broadway, from 1959 through the '80s.
17/08/2145m 3s

Why America's Colleges Have Always Been Unequal

In his new book, 'The State Must Provide,' Adam Harris explains how slavery, segregation and continuing racism prevented or stymied Black education. He examines some of the turning points when higher education could have been made equal and centuries of discrimination could have been remedied. He also writes about the important role Historically Black Colleges and Universities have played, and the reasons why they have been underfunded. Harris went to an HBCU, Alabama A&M University. He's now a staff writer at 'The Atlantic.'
16/08/2146m 47s

Best Of: Sondheim Collaborator James Lapine / SNL's Cecily Strong

Lapine collaborated with Stephen Sondheim to create three musicals — 'Sunday in the Park with George,' 'Into the Woods' and 'Passion.' Lapine's new book is about the making-of 'Sunday in the Park' called 'Putting it Together.' It's based on Lapine's memories, as well as interviews with Sondheim, and members of the cast and crew.Then, Ken Tucker reviews a new posthumously released Prince album.Finally, Strong is nominated for an Emmy for 'Saturday Night Live.' She also stars in the new show 'Schmigadoon,' about a couple that ends up trapped in a town where life is a musical and the townspeople frequently burst into song. Her new memoir is about the depression, anxiety, and grief she experienced during the first months of the pandemic.
14/08/2150m 31s

Remembering Longtime NPR Host Neal Conan

Conan, who died Aug. 10, worked at NPR for 36 years, as a reporter, executive producer of 'All Things Considered' and host of 'Talk of the Nation.' He spoke with Terry Gross in 2002. Also, Justin Chang reviews the new Aretha Franklin biopic 'Respect.'And Ken Tucker shares his songs of the summer.
13/08/2148m 26s

Investigating Trump's Efforts To Subvert The Election Results

'New York Times' reporter Katie Benner discusses the latest revelations about how former President Donald Trump pressured the Justice Department to undermine the results of the 2020 election. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews the debut album by singer Samara Joy.
12/08/2147m 31s

Kenan Thompson On 'SNL' And 'Kenan'

Thompson is currently nominated for two Emmys — one for starring in his sitcom 'Kenan,' and another for 'Saturday Night Live.' He's been a cast member on 'SNL' since 2003, which makes him the performer with the longest tenure in the history of the show. Thompson talks about some of his most memorable 'SNL' sketches. He also talks about playing the Bill Cosby character Fat Albert in a 2004 movie, and later feeling disappointed by Cosby. "He was a prime example of a career that I wanted to have," Thompson says. "I felt super betrayed."Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Agatha Of Little Neon,' a novel about nuns that she calls "sharp and, by turns, melancholy and wry."
11/08/2146m 44s

Trump Impeachment Key Witness Alexander Vindman

The retired Army officer who testified about President Trump's call to the president of Ukraine, talks about the experience and the price he paid. Vindman's new memoir is 'Here, Right Matters: An American Story.'Also, John Powers reviews the novel 'Bullet Train,' a thriller about five assassins boarding the same train.
10/08/2147m 19s

Cecily Strong On 'SNL,' 'Schmigadoon,' And Her New Memoir

Strong is nominated for an Emmy for 'Saturday Night Live.' She also stars in the new show 'Schmigadoon,' about a couple that ends up trapped in a town where life is a musical and the townspeople frequently burst into song. Her new memoir is about the depression, anxiety, and grief she experienced during the first months of the pandemic. "I just kept thinking, all the work I've done on myself with anxiety, I'm going to lose it all because of this," she says. Also, Ken Tucker reviews a new posthumously released Prince album.
09/08/2145m 4s

Best Of: Writer Tarell Alvin McCraney / Osama Bin Laden Biographer

After winning an Oscar for co-writing the film 'Moonlight,' McCraney says he received a lot of opportunities, many of which he turned down. "Some of it had to do with waiting for the other shoe to drop," he says. He's now the creator of the TV series 'David Makes Man,' which is in its second season on OWN. The series begins with a Miami boy whose mother struggles with addiction — and has echoes of McCraney's own childhood.Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Anthony Veasna So's posthumously published short story collection 'Afterparties.'And as the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks approaches, a new biography traces Osama bin Laden's path from a shy, religious teenager to the leader of a global jihadist group dedicated to mass murder. Journalist Peter Bergen, who met the al-Qaida leader in 1997, says that a series of events kept pushing bin Laden "further and further down the path of radicalization." Bergen's new book is 'The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden.'
07/08/2149m 58s

'The Hiroshima Cover-Up'

76 years ago, the U.S. dropped an atomic bomb on the city of Hiroshima. Historian Lesley M.M. Blume's book, 'Fallout,' tells the story of John Hersey, the young journalist whose on-the-ground reporting in Hiroshima exposed the world to the devastation of nuclear weapons. "Hersey had seen everything from that point, from combat to concentration camps," Blume says. "But he later said that nothing prepared him for what he saw in Hiroshima."Also, we remember Ron Popeil, the inventor and TV pitchman whose products included the Veg-O-Matic, Mr. Microphone, and the smokeless ashtray.
06/08/2147m 7s

The 'Dark Money' Effort To Win Elections 'At All Costs'

Jane Mayer's latest investigation for 'The New Yorker' is about rich and powerful conservative groups that are exploiting Trump's false claims of widespread election fraud in order to promote alterations in the way that ballots are cast and counted. "The 2020 election is long since over in most people's minds, and settled and decided," Mayer says. "But these groups are doubling down in the money they're putting into and the effort they're putting into trying to push the idea of fraud — potentially in order to challenge the 2022 midterms, and the 2024 election."Also, Justin Chang reviews the new movie musical 'Annette' starring Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard, which he calls "strange and singular."
05/08/2146m 13s

Inside Osama Bin Laden's Final Hideout

As the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks approaches, a new biography traces Osama bin Laden's path from a shy, religious teenager to the leader of a global jihadist group dedicated to mass murder. Journalist Peter Bergen, who met the al-Qaida leader in 1997, says that a series of events kept pushing bin Laden "further and further down the path of radicalization." Bergen's new book is 'The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden.'
04/08/2146m 40s

Behind-The-Scenes Stories Of Working With Sondheim

James Lapine collaborated with Stephen Sondheim to create three musicals — 'Sunday in the Park with George,' 'Into the Woods,' and 'Passion.' "We're very, very different," Lapine says. "I tend to jump into the deep end of things and figure out how to swim. And Steve is very analytical and doesn't start writing until he knows exactly where he's going." Lapine has written a new book about the making-of 'Sunday in the Park' called 'Putting it Together.' It's based on Lapine's memories, as well as interviews with Sondheim, and members of the cast and crew.
03/08/2144m 29s

Pulitzer Prize-Winner Katori Hall

Hall is the writer and a producer of 'Tina: The Tina Turner Musical.' She won a Pulitzer Prize for her play 'The Hot Wing King.' She's also the creator of 'P-Valley,' a breakout show on Starz about the women working in a fictional Mississippi strip club. "Any time I get an opportunity to lay my hands on a Black woman's story, I just want to make sure that she is fully rendered," Hall tells 'Fresh Air' guest interviewer and 'Atlantic' staff writer Hannah Giorgis. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Anthony Veasna So's posthumously published short story collection 'Afterparties.'
02/08/2147m 5s

Best Of: Jad Abumrad / Public Health Expert Dr. Leana Wen

Abumrad is the creator of the hit public radio series 'RadioLab.' The new 'RadioLab' miniseries, 'The Vanishing of Harry Pace,' is about the man who co-founded a publication with WEB DuBois, founded the first Black-owned record company, helped desegregate a Chicago neighborhood — and then kind of disappeared. Abumrad also co-reported the podcast miniseries 'Dolly Parton's America.'Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews the novel 'Wayward' by Dana Spiotta.Finally, Dr. Wen has commented extensively on CNN and in her 'Washington Post' column about COVID-19 and the precautions we need to take. She emigrated from China as a child and relied on the public health system while she had severe asthma. She talks about her new memoir called 'Lifelines.'
31/07/2148m 53s

Actor Courtney B. Vance / Remembering Bob Moses

Vance is nominated for an Emmy for his guest appearance in the HBO series 'Lovecraft Country.' He played the charismatic and show-stopping attorney Johnnie Cochran in 'The People v. O.J. Simpson.' More recently, he played Aretha Franklin's father, Rev. C.L Franklin, in 'Genius: Aretha.'Also, John Powers reviews a new edition of a 1963 novel by black reporter William Gardner Smith.Then, we remember pioneering civil rights activist Bob Moses. He died Sunday at age 86. Finally, Kevin Whitehead reviews two very different new albums by outstanding tenor saxophonists.
30/07/2147m 39s

Leaks Reveal Spyware Meant To Track Criminals Targeted Activists Instead

'Washington Post' reporter Craig Timberg explains how military-grade spyware licensed to governments and police departments has infiltrated the iPhones of journalists, activists and others. "It takes a story like this to help people understand how deeply enmeshed these tiny little computers have gotten into our lives," Timberg says. "I still carry my iPhone everywhere I go ... And the reality of that is that every time I do that, I'm exposing not just myself, but everyone I deal with to the possibility of spying by governments all over the world."Also, Justin Chang reviews 'The Green Knight' starring Dev Patel.
29/07/2145m 57s

'Moonlight' Writer Tarell Alvin McCraney

After winning an Oscar for co-writing the film 'Moonlight,' McCraney says he received a lot of opportunities, many of which he turned down. "Some of it had to do with waiting for the other shoe to drop," he says. He's now the creator of the TV series 'David Makes Man,' which is in its second season on OWN. The series begins with a Miami boy whose mother struggles with addiction — and has echoes of McCraney's own childhood.
28/07/2146m 13s

Public Health Expert Dr. Leana Wen On COVID & Mandates

Dr. Wen is an emergency physician, CNN Health Analyst and former Baltimore Health Commissioner. We talk about mask and vaccine mandates, the return to school and work, and the Delta variant. "Unfortunately, we're in a situation now where the vaccinated are having to pay the price for the actions of the unvaccinated," she says. Wen emigrated from China as a child and relied on the public health system while she had severe asthma. She has a new memoir called 'Lifelines.' Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews the novel 'Wayward' by Dana Spiotta.
27/07/2146m 49s

Jad Abumrad

Abumrad is the creator of the hit public radio series RadioLab. The show started off as a series about science-related mysteries, but now it investigates all kinds of stories. The new RadioLab miniseries, 'The Vanishing of Harry Pace,' is about the man who co-founded a publication with WEB DuBois, co-wrote St. Louis Blues with WC Handy, founded the first Black-owned record company, helped desegregate a Chicago neighborhood — and then kind of disappeared. Abumrad also co-reported the podcast miniseries 'Dolly Parton's America,' which uses her life and music to examine larger issues like America's cultural divide.
26/07/2145m 46s

Best Of: Questlove / Growing Up In A Utopian Community

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson talks about directing the new film 'Summer of Soul,' documenting the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. It features performances by Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Mahalia Jackson and more, and reflects on the cultural and political changes of the time. We'll also talk about big changes in Questlove's life. Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead remembers electric guitarists George Barnes and Mary Osborne, who were born 100 years ago.Writer Akash Kapur reflects on growing up in a Utopian community founded in India 1968. While living in the U.S., he connected with a woman who also grew up in that community. They married and returned there, to better understand the social tumult of their childhood, and to learn more about the mysterious circumstances surrounding her parents' deaths. His book is 'Better to Have Gone.'
24/07/2149m 53s

Hugh Grant On 'The Undoing'

Hugh Grant has been nominated for an Emmy for his role in the HBO miniseries 'The Undoing,' in which he played an adulterous doctor suspected of murder. Grant got his start in romcoms, but lately he's been getting darker roles. "It's alarming how many pretty unpleasant narcissists I've played or been offered in the last six or seven years. But It's certainly been a blessed relief after having to be Mr. Nice Guy for so many years," he says. Ken Tucker reviews two new albums from Australia and David Bianculli reviews the second season of 'Ted Lasso' on Apple TV+.
23/07/2147m 51s

How GOP State Legislatures Are Remaking The U.S.

Journalist Ron Brownstein says Republican-controlled state legislatures are taking a sharp right turn, in a conscious backlash against unified Democratic control of Congress. These states are not only passing voting rights restrictions, they're passing a torrent of other conservative bills that reflect the cultural and racial priorities of Trump's base. Brownstein is a senior editor at 'The Atlantic' and a senior political analyst at CNN. His latest book is called 'Rock Me on the Water: 1974 - The Year Los Angeles Transformed Movies, Music, Television and Politics.'Justin Chang reviews the South Korean film 'The Woman Who Ran.'
22/07/2146m 0s

Questlove On 'Summer of Soul'

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson is coming out of the pandemic a changed man. The co-founder of the Roots and the music director for 'The Tonight Show' did something he never thought he'd do — he bought a farm in upstate New York. "I thought chaos was the only way that I could exist. But now I embrace quiet and I can hear myself think." Now he's venturing into a new arena: He's made his directorial debut with the documentary 'Summer of Soul,' which tells the story of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, known as the "Black Woodstock."
21/07/2147m 8s

Reopening The Jeffrey Epstein Investigation

Long after Jeffrey Epstein got a lenient sentence for sexual abuse of minors, 'Miami Herald' reporter Julie K. Brown identified 80 women who said they survived his abuse. "There is nothing that was more powerful than the words of the women talking about this themselves," she says. Her book is 'Perversion of Justice.'
20/07/2147m 17s

Growing Up In A Utopian Community

Memoirist Akash Kapur was raised in an intentional community in India, then moved to the U.S. at age 16. He's seen the idealism of people trying to remake human society and renounce materialism. He's also seen how idealism and spirituality can turn into zealotry--and how individuals can become victims of their own search for perfection. Kapur writes about the reality of utopian communities in 'Better to Have Gone: Love, Death, and the Quest for Utopia in Auroville.'Kevin Whitehead reviews a new Bill Evans anthology.
19/07/2146m 12s

Best Of: 'Startup Wife' Author Tahmima Anam / MLB Pitcher C.C. Sabathia

Tahmima Anam's new novel is about a married couple, Cyrus and Asha, who found a social media platform that customizes ceremonies and rituals for people who aren't religious. The platform's success turns the husband into a messiah figure — even though it was his wife who designed it. We talk with Amam about how her real life boardroom experience helped inspire the novel.TV critic David Bianculli reviews the comedy series 'Schmigadoon!' Six-time All Star C.C. Sabathia pitched for the Yankees and the Indians over the course of his 19-year career. He also struggled with alcoholism. Sabathia reflects on baseball and sobriety in the memoir, 'Till the End.'
17/07/2149m 57s

Anthony Bourdain, 'Roadrunner'

We revisit our 2016 interview with culinary icon Anthony Bourdain. He hosted the CNN series 'Parts Unknown' which took audiences to countries all over the world. He spoke with 'Fresh Air' about his breakout book, 'Kitchen Confidential,' and why he didn't think of himself as a journalist. Bourdain died in 2018 by suicide while filming in France. 'Roadrunner,' a new documentary about his life and tragic death, is now in theaters.TV critic David Bianculli reviews 'Schmigadoon!' starring Cecily Strong of 'SNL.'
16/07/2146m 57s

Our Renewable Energy Future

'New York Times' reporter Ivan Penn unpacks the debate over infrastructure: Do we go big and fund huge wind and solar farms with new transmission lines, or go local, with rooftop solar panels, batteries and micro-grids? Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews a reprint of Gloria Naylor's landmark novel, 'The Women of Brewster Place.'
15/07/2146m 51s

MLB Pitcher C.C. Sabathia

The six-time All Star pitched for the Yankees and the Indians over the course of his 19-year career. He also struggled with alcoholism. Sabathia reflects on baseball and sobriety in the memoir, 'Till the End.' Justin Chang shares his favorite picks from the Cannes Film Festival, which he screened from L.A. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead celebrates the centennial of two early electric guitarists, George Barnes and Mary Osborne.
14/07/2146m 44s

The 'Ugly Truth' About Facebook

In their new book, 'New York Times' reporters Cecilia Kang and Sheera Frenkel examine the problems Facebook created and the problems it's facing. We talk about disinformation, hate speech, and how CEO Mark Zuckerberg knew the "Stop the Steal" private groups were planning a riot on the capitol but decided against warning the president. "Facebook knew the potential for explosive violence was very real [on Jan 6]," Kang says.
13/07/2146m 15s

'Startup Wife' Author Satirizes Tech Culture & Sexism

Tahmima Anam's new novel is about a married couple, Cyrus and Asha, who found a tech startup. It's a social media platform that customizes ceremonies and rituals for people who aren't religious. The platform's success turns the husband into a messiah figure — even though it was his wife who designed it. We talk with Amam about how her real life boardroom experience helped inspire the novel, the allure of rituals, and her childhood growing up in many different countries.
12/07/2146m 57s

Best Of: Writer Ashley C. Ford / Flight Attendant-Turned-Author T.J. Newman

Ashley C. Ford's father was incarcerated when she was too young to remember, and she was 30 when he got out. For many of those years, no one told her what his crime was. When she was in her teens, not longer after she'd been raped by a boyfriend, she was shocked to learn her father had been convicted of rape. Her memoir is 'Somebody's Daughter.'Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a newly released recording of a 1969 Sarah Vaughan concert.Also, we'll hear from former flight attendant T.J. Newman. Her 10 years working crowded cabins informed her debut novel, 'Falling.' It's a thriller about a flight from LA to New York, in which the pilot learns a terrorist plans to kill his family unless he crashes his plane.
10/07/2149m 45s

Mindy Kaling On 'Never Have I Ever'

Kaling's Netflix show, 'Never Have I Ever,' is based on her own experiences as a nerdy, confident teen who pined for a boyfriend. The second season drops next week. She spoke with Terry Gross in 2020 about the series, how being a diversity hire at 'The Office' inspired her movie 'Late Night,' and how the grief of losing a parent has impacted her as a mother. TV critic David Bianculli reviews the music documentaries 'Summer of Soul' and 'McCartney 3-2-1.'
09/07/2147m 4s

Freeing An Innocent Man From Prison

When Yutico Briley was 19 years old, he was sentenced to 60 years in prison for an armed robbery he said he didn't commit. After serving 7 years of his sentence, Briley heard criminal justice reporter Emily Bazelon on 'Fresh Air' and wrote to her about his case. Bazelon started corresponding with him and doing some research, and found flaws in his defense and trial representative of larger problems in the justice system. Her sister Lara Bazelon, a lawyer, decided to take Briley's case and file for an appeal. Lara won the appeal and his exoneration. Emily Bazelon's article about Briley is the cover story of this week's 'New York Times Magazine.' We'll hear from Emily Bazelon and Yutico Briley.
08/07/2146m 58s

Sex & Censorship In The Gilded Age

The Comstock Act, which passed in 1873, virtually outlawed contraception. In 'The Man Who Hated Women,' author Amy Sohn writes about the man behind the law — and the women prosecuted under it. John Powers reviews the detective drama 'Unforgotten' on PBS.
07/07/2146m 50s

Former Flight Attendant Shares Stories From The Sky

T.J. Newman's new book, 'Falling,' is a thriller about a hijacking on a commercial flight. The pilot is told he must crash the plane or his family on the ground will be killed. We talk with Newman about her book and about her 10 years in the skies — from pet peeves to scary situations. "If all you see us do is a beverage service, that's a great day at work because that means that we're not actually doing our job, because we have training in everything from hazmat to hijackings to medical situations to turbulence to mechanical issues," she says. Also, podcast critic Nick Quah reviews Audible's comedy fiction podcast 'Hot White Heist,' starring SNL's Bowen Yang.
06/07/2147m 17s

Bandleader Jon Batiste

Batiste is the bandleader of 'The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.' He joins us from his home piano where he plays music he wrote for the Pixar movie 'Soul' and songs from his album 'We Are.' We'll also hear his rendition of 'The Star Spangled Banner' and the Black national anthem, "Lift Every Voice."
05/07/2147m 39s

Best Of: Uzo Aduba / Desus & Mero

Uzo Aduba's breakout role was as Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren in the Netflix series about a women's prison, 'Orange is the New Black.' Now she stars in the HBO reboot of 'In Treatment,' as therapist Dr. Brooke Taylor. We'll talk about the 180 degree change between the two roles.Ken Tucker reviews new albums by Chrissie Hynde singing Dylan songs and Shannon McNally doing songs associated with Waylon Jennings. Desus Nice and The Kid Mero started out doing comedy together on Twitter, then created the 'Bodega Boys' podcast. Their comedy series on Showtime is now in its third season. We talk about growing up in the Bronx in the '80s and '90s, graffiti, hip-hop and the odd jobs that shaped them.
03/07/2150m 5s

Bruce Springsteen Returns To Broadway

"The Boss" spoke with Terry Gross at his New Jersey home studio in 2016 about masculinity, depression, and wishing he was his stage persona. His one-man show, 'Springsteen on Broadway,' returned to Broadway this week. Also, film critic Justin Chang reviews Steven Soderbergh's 'No Sudden Move,' starring Don Cheadle and Benicio del Toro.
02/07/2148m 46s

How A Former Spy Trained Conservatives To Infiltrate Progressive Groups

'NYT' reporter Adam Goldman describes an undercover effort, led by an avid Trump supporter, that trained conservatives in espionage techniques and sent them to dig up dirt on progressives. Some operations were aimed at discrediting perceived enemies of Trump when he was president, including his national security advisor, H.R. McMaster.Also rock critic Ken Tucker reviews new songs by veteran artists Tom Jones, Jackson Browne and John Mayer.
01/07/2145m 16s

Global Sanitation & Transforming The Toilet

The United Nations estimates that 4.2 billion people — more than half of the world's population — live without any access to safely managed sanitation. No septic systems. No waste treatment plants. In 'Pipe Dreams,' Chelsea Wald examines the health issues related to sanitation and looks at global efforts to manage human waste, including turning it into fuel and fertilizer.Also, John Powers reviews the novel 'The Netanyahus,' by Joshua Cohen, and Kevin Whitehead reviews a newly released 1969 concert recording by Sarah Vaughan.
30/06/2146m 44s

Watergate, The Tapes & The Fall Of The Nixon White House

Historian and author Michael Dobbs reconstructs how the scandal gradually engulfed more administration officials, with operatives turning on each other — and eventually the president. We'll talk about what led to Nixon's downfall and why there are more tapes of Nixon than of any other president. Dobbs' book is 'King Richard.' Also, TV critic David Bianculli shares his thoughts on Conan O'Brien's farewell to his late night show, as he moves to HBO Max for a variety show.
29/06/2146m 9s

Uzo Aduba

Aduba's breakout role was as Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren in the Netflix series about a women's prison, 'Orange is the New Black.' Now she stars in the HBO reboot of 'In Treatment,' as therapist Dr. Brooke Taylor. We talk about the 180 degree change between the two roles, colorism in Hollywood, and the significance of her full Nigerian name — Uzoamaka Nwanneka Aduba.
28/06/2145m 43s

Best Of: Anthony Ramos / Renée Elise Goldsberry

Anthony Ramos says Lin-Manuel Miranda's Broadway musical 'In the Heights' filled him with hope about a life on the stage: "I felt like I'm watching my cousins and my aunts and uncles on the stage ... like friends that I grew up with. And these people are speaking vernacular that's familiar to me." Now he's starring — and singing and dancing and rapping — in the film adaptation. We also talk about his roles in 'Hamilton' and his childhood. Justin Chang reviews 'Luca' and 'Undine.' The comedy series 'Girls5Eva,' which was just renewed for a second season, follows a 1990s band that reunites after a long stretch of obscurity. Renée Elise Goldsberry was once in a girl group herself. She spoke with Ann Marie Baldonado about women being pitted against each other in showbiz and her show-stopping song "Satisfied" in 'Hamilton.'
26/06/2150m 2s

The Early Years Of The CIA

In his book, 'The Quiet Americans,' author Scott Anderson profiles four daring and resourceful soldiers who became intelligence agents after World War II, when America was strong and respected after defeating Nazi Germany. The CIA then embarked on hundreds of ill-considered covert operations in Eastern Europe, and its obsession with fighting Communism propelled it into the subversion of several democratically-elected governments around the world. David Bianculli reviews the new seasons of 'Evil' and 'The Good Fight.'
25/06/2146m 53s

The Battle Over Teaching Critical Race Theory

An NBC News analysis finds at least 165 local and national groups are trying to disrupt or block lessons on critical race theory. NBC reporter Tyler Kingkade explores who is waging this fight, and why. "Opponents are using critical race theory as really more of a catchall to include anything teaching students about systemic racism, any mention of white privilege, and really the definition that they're using has expanded to include anything related to equity, diversity and inclusion," he says. Also, critic Kevin Whitehead reviews the last albums from bassist Mario Pavone, which he recorded near the end of his life.
24/06/2145m 48s

Megan Rapinoe

The USWNT soccer star and activist spoke with Terry Gross last year about her World Cup wins, being one of the first openly gay players on the national team, and taking a knee in solidarity with Black Lives Matter — and the repercussions she faced. The team's ongoing fight for equal pay is the subject of a new HBO Max documentary called 'LFG.' Ken Tucker reviews two cover albums, one by Chrissie Hynde of Bob Dylan songs, and one by Shannon McNally of Waylon Jennings songs.
23/06/2146m 47s

Renée Elise Goldsberry On 'Girls5Eva' & 'Hamilton'

The comedy series 'Girls5Eva,' which was just renewed for a second season, follows a 1990s band that reunites after a long stretch of obscurity. Goldsberry was once in a girl group herself. She spoke with Ann Marie Baldonado about women being pitted against each other in showbiz, her show-stopping song "Satisfied" in 'Hamilton,' and what she learned from her time on a soap opera. Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews Francis Spufford's novel, 'Light Perpetual.'
22/06/2147m 0s

Desus & Mero

Desus Nice and The Kid Mero started out doing comedy together on Twitter, then created the 'Bodega Boys' podcast. Their comedy series on Showtime is now in its third season. We talk about growing up in the Bronx in the '80s and '90s, graffiti, hip-hop and the odd jobs that shaped them. Also, Justin Chang reviews the Pixar film 'Luca' and the German film 'Undine.'
21/06/2146m 29s

Best Of: Julie Lythcott-Haims / How Junk Food Companies Get Us 'Hooked'

Former Stanford University undergraduate dean Julie Lythcott-Haims' memoir, 'Real American,' is the story of her coming to terms with her racial identity. Her father was a successful Black physician, her mother a white British woman. She recalls stories from her childhood, and the racist messaging she received. "I knew by 7 that something was wrong with Blackness." Kevin Whitehead reviews the album 'Minor Swing,' by Vincent Herring. Journalist Michael Moss says processed foods can be as addictive as cocaine, heroin and cigarettes. In his new book, 'Hooked,' Moss explores how these companies appeal to our senses, nostalgia and brain chemistry to keep us snacking.
19/06/2150m 38s

The 50th Anniversary Of The Pentagon Papers

Fifty years ago this week, 'The New York Times' published the first in a series of articles based on a classified Defense Department study that was leaked to the paper by Daniel Ellsberg. This study came to be known as the Pentagon Papers. It chronicled decades of failed U.S. policy in Vietnam, and the ways the American public was misled in how the war was conducted. We listen back to archival interviews with Ellsberg and Ben Bradlee of 'The Washington Post,' who ran their own series on the documents. Later, we remember actor Ned Beatty, who died this week and critic David Bianculli reviews the Apple TV+ series 'Physical,' starring Rose Byrne.
18/06/2147m 38s

Questions Surrounding The COVID-19 Lab-Leak Theory

What are the credible questions related to the theory that COVID-19 leaked from a lab in Wuhan, China? President Biden has asked the intelligence community to investigate, but 'Vanity Fair' reporter Katherine Eban says there have been many roadblocks.
17/06/2145m 43s

Challenging The Myths Of The Alamo

Remember the Alamo? According to Texas lore, it's the site in San Antonio where, in 1836, about 180 Texan rebels died defending the state during Texas' war for independence from Mexico. But in a new book, Bryan Burrough (along with co-writers Chris Tomlinson and Jason Stanford) challenge the historical lore of the Alamo — including the story that Davy Crockett refused to surrender. "Most academics now believe, based on Mexican accounts and contemporary accounts, that, in fact, [Crockett] did surrender and was executed," Burrough says. His book is 'Forget the Alamo.'Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Republic of Detours' by Scott Borchert.
16/06/2146m 18s

Writer Ashley C. Ford On Her Memoir 'Somebody's Daughter'

For most of Ashley C. Ford's life, her father was incarcerated for rape. This was especially traumatizing for Ford, as she herself is a survivor of sexual assault. Her new bestselling memoir 'Somebody's Daughter' details her evolving relationship with her father and her own body. "I'm in love with my humanity. I love being a human. I do," she says. "The range of emotions is terrifying and beautiful. The range of actions are terrifying and beautiful that a human can experience, and some of my experiences suck really, really bad. A lot of them are fantastic." Also John Powers reviews the second season of the Netflix series 'Lupin.'
15/06/2147m 36s

Anthony Ramos On 'In The Heights' & 'Hamilton'

Anthony Ramos says Lin-Manuel Miranda's Broadway musical 'In the Heights' filled him with hope about a life on the stage: "I felt like I'm watching my cousins and my aunts and uncles on the stage ... like friends that I grew up with. And these people are speaking vernacular that's familiar to me." Now he's starring — and singing and dancing and rapping — in the film adaptation. We also talk about his roles in 'Hamilton,' his childhood, and his Calvin Klein ads.
14/06/2146m 27s

Best Of: Rita Moreno / Daisy Hernández

Rita Moreno moved to the U.S. mainland from Puerto Rico as a child. She says her 'West Side Story' role is "the only part I ever remember where I represented Hispanics in a dignified and positive way." Moreno is an EGOT, a winner of an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony.Film critic Justin Chang reviews the film adaptation of the musical 'In the Heights.'Also, we'll talk with Daisy Hernández, author of 'The Kissing Bug: The True Story of a Family, an Insect and a Nation's Neglect of a Deadly Disease.' It's part medical history, part personal history about growing in an immigrant family, including her aunt who had the disease.
12/06/2149m 5s

Catching Up With Stephen Colbert / Remembering Clarence Williams III

We remember actor Clarence Williams III, best known for playing Linc Hayes, one of three hippie undercover cops on the TV series 'The Mod Squad' from 1968 to 1973. Also, Stephen Colbert begins taping the 'The Late Show' in front of a live audience again on Monday. We hear his interview with Terry about doing the show from home taping during the pandemic. "I got into show business in a way to not be alone. Like a lot of comedians, I'm a bit of a broken toy," Colbert says.And Justin Chang reviews the new film adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical 'In the Heights.'
11/06/2147m 47s

Inside The Ransomware Industry

New York Times investigative reporter Michael Schwirtz gained access to the dashboard of DarkSide, a ransomware operation that's pulled in more than $90 million since it began last August. Schwirtz talks about DarkSide's business model, its customer support system to help the hackers it enables, and help the victims learn how to use Bitcoin to pay the ransom.
10/06/2146m 6s

The Space Race & The Dangerous Early Days Of NASA

On the morning of Feb. 20, 1962, about 100,000 spectators gathered in Cape Canaveral, Fla., to witness the launch of the Friendship 7, the United States' first mission to put an astronaut in orbit around the Earth. Historian Jeff Shesol says there was real fear that astronaut John Glenn wouldn't survive the day. We talk with Shesol about the early days of NASA, and how the Cold War pushed the U.S. space program to its limits. His book is 'Mercury Rising.' David Bianculli reviews the Disney+ series 'Loki' starring Tom Hiddleston.
09/06/2147m 6s

Race, Sexuality & The Deadly 'Kissing Bug'

When Daisy Hernández was 5, her aunt in Colombia came down with a mysterious illness that caused her large intestine to swell. Hernandez details her aunt's story — and her own — in a new memoir.
08/06/2145m 25s

Rita Moreno

Moreno moved to the U.S. mainland from Puerto Rico as a child. She says her 'West Side Story' role is "the only part I ever remember where I represented Hispanics in a dignified and positive way." We talk about some of the racism and sexism she experienced in Hollywood, her relationship with Marlon Brando, and why she's happier than ever now at 89 years old. Moreno is an EGOT, a winner of an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony.
07/06/2145m 45s

Best Of: Exonerated 5 Member / Reckoning With The Legacy Of Slavery

In 1990, Yusef Salaam was one of the five boys wrongly convicted in the so-called Central Park jogger case. Salaam spent nearly seven years behind bars and wasn't exonerated until 2002, when a serial rapist confessed to the crime. Salaam tells his story in his memoir 'Better, Not Bitter.'Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews 'Black to the Future' by Shabaka Hutchings and the Sons of Kemet. In 'How the Word is Passed,' writer and poet Clint Smith visits eight places central to the history of slavery in America, including Thomas Jefferson's Monticello plantation and Louisiana's Angola prison. "This history that we are told was so long ago wasn't, in fact, that long ago at all," he says.
05/06/2150m 11s

Producing The Philly Sound

We hear from songwriter, arranger and producer Thom Bell. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Philadelphia International Records. Among the songs he arranged were Joe Simon's "Drowning in the Sea of Love," and "Back Stabbers" by The O'Jays. Bell is in the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He also wrote and arranged for The Stylistics, The Spinners, and The Delfonics. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2006. Also, Justin Chang reviews the horror movie 'A Quiet Place Part II,' the sequel to John Krasinski's 2018 film.
04/06/2147m 21s

How Russia Used An Overt Agent To Attack Biden In The 2020 Election

'Time' investigative correspondent Simon Shuster says that Andriy Derkach, a seven-term member of the Ukrainian parliament, and widely believed to be a Russian agent, gave misleading information to Rudy Giuliani to discredit Biden during the 2020 campaign. Derkach and Giuliani are both under investigation by federal prosecutors in the U.S.
03/06/2146m 41s

The Racist Roots Of The 2nd Amendment

Carol Anderson says the Second Amendment was designed to ensure slave owners could quickly crush any rebellion or resistance from those they'd enslaved. "One of the things that I argue throughout this book is that it is just being Black that is the threat. And so when you mix that being Black as the threat with bearing arms, it's an exponential fear," she says. "This isn't an anti-gun or a pro-gun book. This is a book about African Americans' rights." Anderson's new book is 'The Second.'Ken Tucker reviews the album 'Outside Child' by Allison Russell.
02/06/2145m 34s

Reckoning With The History Of Slavery

In 'How the Word is Passed,' writer and poet Clint Smith visits eight places central to the history of slavery in America, including Thomas Jefferson's Monticello plantation and Louisiana's Angola prison. "We are taught that the history of slavery is something that happened almost like when there were dinosaurs," he says. But Smith notes that his grandfather's grandfather was enslaved — and that "this history that we are told was so long ago wasn't, in fact, that long ago at all." Maureen Corrigan reviews two thriller novels: Chris Power's 'A Lonely Man' and Jean Hanff Korelitz's nightmare of a thriller 'The Plot.'
01/06/2146m 16s

50 Years Of Philadelphia International Records

TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia) was the theme from 'Soul Train,' and was one of the many hits written and produced by Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff for Philadelphia International Records, the label they co-founded. The label is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. They recorded The O'Jays, Patti LaBelle, Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes, Teddy Pendergrass, Billy Paul, McFadden and Whitehead, Soul Survivors and more. We'll listen back to the interview Terry Gross recorded with Gamble and Huff in 2008, in which they talked about their partnership, their label, and some of their greatest recordings.Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews the album 'Black to Future' by the London quartet Sons of Kemet.
31/05/2148m 39s

Best Of: 'Opal & Nev' Author / The History Of Juneteenth

Dawnie Walton's novel, 'The Final Revival of Opal & Nev,' is a faux oral history about a '70s interracial rock duo. Opal is a Black proto Afro-punk singer from Detroit, and Nev is a goofy white British singer-songwriter. Walton was inspired by Grace Jones, Betty Davis, Elton John and Bowie. We talk with Walton about how her career in journalism and her taste in music growing up informed the book.Maureen Corrigan reviews 2 suspense novels: 'A Lonely Man,' by Chris Power, and 'The Plot,' by Jean Hanff Korelitz.Juneteenth, formerly Emancipation Day or Jubilee, celebrates the day slavery ended in Texas, June 19, 1865. Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed studies the early American republic and the legacy of slavery. Her book is 'On Juneteenth.'
29/05/2149m 45s

2 Concerts: Rachael & Vilray / Loudon Wainwright III & Vince Giordano

The music duo Rachael & Vilray perform songs from their debut album — new songs written by Vilray that could have been on the radio in the '30s and '40s, and songs from the '20s and '30s. We'll also hear from Loudon Wainwright III and Vince Giordano. They teamed up last year to record an album of songs written by Fats Waller, Harold Arlen and others. It's called 'I'd Rather Lead a Band.'Also, Justin Chang reviews 'Cruella,' the origin story of Cruella de Vil, starring Emma Stone.
28/05/2146m 44s

How States Are Making It Harder To Vote

'New York Times' reporter Nick Corasaniti says Republican-led state legislatures are restricting voting and seizing more power over how elections are run — making previously non-partisan jobs political. David Bianculli reviews three documentaries the commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa race massacre.
27/05/2146m 43s

'Exonerated Five' Member Yusef Salaam

In 1990, Yusef Salaam was one of the five boys wrongly convicted in the so-called Central Park jogger case. Salaam spent nearly 7 years behind bars and wasn't exonerated until 2002, when a serial rapist confessed to the crime. "When the truth came out, that's when we got our lives back," Salaam says. "But for those of us who had five to 10 years prison sentences, we had done all of someone else's time. ... We will never know what our life would have been like had we not gone through this horrible experience." Salaam tells his story in his memoir 'Better, Not Bitter.' And podcast critic Nick Quah reviews a stunning new series called 'The Line.'
26/05/2146m 38s

The History Of Juneteenth

Juneteenth, formerly Emancipation Day or Jubilee, celebrates the day slavery ended in Texas, June 19, 1865. Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed studies the early American republic and the legacy of slavery. "It was a very, very tense time — hope and at the same time, hostility," Gordon-Reed says. Her book is 'On Juneteenth.'
25/05/2144m 48s

'Opal & Nev' Author Dawnie Walton

Dawnie Walton's novel, 'The Final Revival of Opal & Nev,' is a faux oral history about a '70s interracial rock duo. Opal is a Black proto Afro-punk singer from Detroit, and Nev is a goofy white British singer-songwriter. Walton was inspired by Grace Jones, Betty Davis, Elton John and Bowie. We talk with Walton about how her career in journalism and her taste in music growing up informed the book. And John Powers reviews 'Whitstable Pearl,' a crime drama on Acorn TV.
24/05/2146m 38s

Best Of: Seth Rogen / Jean Smart

Seth Rogen returns to talk about his new memoir, 'Yearbook,' which is filled with funny and surprising stories — starting with the first time he did stand-up when he was 12 and continuing through his life and film career. He's produced, directed, written and starred in many films, including 'Knocked Up,' 'Superbad,' and 'The Interview.' Justin Chang reviews the Indian film 'The Disciple' about an aspiring classical singer.Jean Smart's breakout role was on the '80s sitcom 'Designing Women.' She's had recent great roles as the head of a crime family on 'Fargo' and as an FBI agent on 'Watchmen.' Now she co-stars in the HBO series 'Mare of Easttown' and stars in HBO Max comedy 'Hacks,' as a veteran comic forced to update her act.
22/05/2150m 34s

Remembering Actor Charles Grodin / Delmark Records' Bob Koester

Actor Charles Grodin, of 'Midnight Run' and 'Heartbreak Kid' fame, died May 18. He was known for his deadpan humor and his ability to make even the most unpleasant characters likable and funny. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1989. Also, we remember Bob Koester, who died May 12. He was the founder of Delmark Records, which released records by blues and jazz artists, and he also operated the Jazz Record Mart in Chicago. He was a mentor and father figure for many Chicago musicians, and he was considered one of the major forces behind the blues revival in the mid '60s. Justin Chang reviews 'The Killing of Two Lovers' and TV critic David Bianculli reviews two shows, 'The Bite' and 'Solos.'
21/05/2146m 4s

Inside The COVID Crisis In India

Jeffrey Gettleman of the 'New York Times,' based in New Delhi, says the air has been filled with smoke from crematories. Meanwhile, the health care system is collapsing and the black market for oxygen and medicine is thriving. "What we're seeing now is the nightmare that we really wanted to avoid," he says. "And that is this virus just tearing through a really large country. 1.4 billion people, many of them living in close quarters, a perfect recipe for disaster for a highly contagious disease."
20/05/2145m 56s

Actor John Boyega On 'Star Wars' & 'Small Axe'

Boyega played Finn in the 'Star Wars' sequel trilogy and he won a Golden Globe for his leading role in the anthology series 'Small Axe,' as a Black British police officer who joined the force in the '80s to try to change the system. Boyega has been outspoken about systemic racism — including in Hollywood. Last year, he talked about how his character in 'Star Wars' was sidelined, along with the other characters played by actors of color. He spoke with guest interviewer Sam Sanders. Ken Tucker reviews Sophia Kennedy's new album 'Monsters' and John Powers reviews Rachel Cusk's novel 'Second Place.'
19/05/2147m 49s

Seth Rogen

Rogen returns to talk about his new memoir, 'Yearbook,' which is filled with funny and surprising stories — starting with the first time he did stand-up when he was 12 and continuing through his life and film career. He used to be the youngest person in the room, but now that he's approaching 40, he's reconsidering a lot of things, from what message not to give teens in his films to how to create a set where everyone feels comfortable and safe. He's produced, directed, written and starred in many films, including 'Knocked Up,' 'Superbad,' 'Pineapple Express,' 'This is the End,' 'The Interview' and 'Long Shot.'
18/05/2146m 39s

Failure & Dysfunction In The Secret Service

Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Carol Leonnig's new book, 'Zero Fail,' examines how the Secret Service is underfunded, overworked, and increasingly relying on luck. "They strongly believed that it was a matter of time before a president was shot on their watch," Leonnig says. We talk about the impact of JFK's assassination on the agency, the prostitution scandal in Colombia ahead of Obama's trip there, and how Trump's golf trips drained the agency's resources.Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Notes on Grief' by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
17/05/2147m 21s

Best Of: Filmmaker Barry Jenkins / Writer Francisco Goldman

We talk with 'Moonlight' filmmaker Barry Jenkins about his new series, 'The Underground Railroad.' Adapted from Colson Whitehead's novel, the series follows Cora, an enslaved young woman who has escaped a plantation and heads North on a literal railroad train. Jenkins says the series made him feel closer to his ancestors. Maureen Corrigan reviews Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's latest book, 'Notes on Grief.' Also, Francisco Goldman talks about his new, semi-autobiographical novel, 'Monkey Boy.' The son of a Jewish father and a Guatemalan mother, Goldman grew up mostly in working class suburbs of Boston. He reflects on the impact of physical abuse from his father, and the assaults and insults he endured from kids who resented his ethnic background.
15/05/2150m 10s

Tom Jones

The singer Tom Jones, who became a pop star and sex symbol in the 1960s with "It's Not Unusual," "Delilah," and "What's New Pussycat?" has a new album. He spoke with Terry Gross in 2003. Also, we remember dancer Jacques d'Amboise, who was with the New York City Ballet for decades. He died May 2. And Justin Chang reviews 'The Woman in the Window.'
14/05/2147m 46s

Unlocking The Mysteries Of Endometriosis

It's estimated that one in 10 women experience endometriosis during their reproductive years, a condition where cells from the uterine lining go rogue, move to other organs and grow there, leading to terrible pain. Many women who have the disorder struggle to be properly diagnosed. Dr. Linda Griffith spent years in debilitating pain before she was finally diagnosed. "I was told it was normal. I was told that I was under stress ... [that] I was rejecting my femininity," she says. In 2009, she co-founded the MIT Center for Gynepathology Research, where she studies the disorder. We talk about "period privilege," why she kept her condition a secret for so long, and treatments on the horizon.Also, David Bianculli reviews the HBO Max series 'Hacks' starring Jean Smart.
13/05/2146m 27s

Actor Jean Smart

Smart's breakout role was on the '80s sitcom 'Designing Women.' She's had recent great roles as the head of a crime family on 'Fargo' and as an FBI agent on 'Watchmen.' Now she co-stars in the HBO series 'Mare of Easttown' and stars in HBO Max comedy 'Hacks,' as a veteran comic forced to update her act. Smart talks about meeting her late husband, learning the Delaware County accent for 'Mare of Easttown' and the 'Fraiser' line fans quote back to her.
12/05/2147m 42s

Writer Francisco Goldman Revisits His Childhood With 'Monkey Boy'

The son of a Jewish father and a Guatemalan mother, Goldman grew up mostly in working class suburbs of Boston. His new novel, 'Monkey Boy,' draws on his own experiences, including being physically abused by his dad. "I wanted to go back and look at some very difficult years of my childhood and adolescence," Goldman says.
11/05/2147m 11s

Filmmaker Barry Jenkins On 'The Underground Railroad'

Barry Jenkins says filming his new series about an enslaved girl who escapes from a plantation was the most difficult project of his career — and one that made him feel closer to his own ancestors. "It was incredibly difficult, partly because we were standing in places where ... these atrocities had occurred," he says. Jenkins directed 'Moonlight,' which won the 2017 Oscar for Best Picture, as well as the 2018 adaptation of James Baldwin's novel, 'If Beale Street Could Talk.' We talk about depicting the brutality of slavery onscreen, his own family history, and why he wanted to become a filmmaker.
10/05/2146m 59s

Best Of: Advocate For Teen Moms, Nicole Lynn Lewis / Cartoonist Alison Bechdel

As a pregnant teenager, Nicole Lynn Lewis felt ashamed. Now she knows many pregnant teens share the problems she had — including an abusive boyfriend, and being temporarily homeless. She says the odds against pregnant teens going to college and having a career are even greater, if you're Black, like she is. We talk about her new memoir, 'Pregnant Girl.' Also, we hear from Alison Bechdel. Her graphic memoir 'Fun Home,' about coming out and learning her father had secret gay affairs, was adapted into a Tony Award-winning musical. Her new graphic memoir, 'The Secret to Superhuman Strength,' is about her obsession with exercise and the issues that have fed that obsession. And, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a new Louis Armstrong box set.
08/05/2151m 0s

Celebrating Mothers: Feat. Trevor Noah, Scorsese & More

We celebrate Mother's Day with stories of mom from past interviews with 'Daily Show' host Trevor Noah, Martin Scorsese and filmmaker Albert Brooks. And Lorna Luft remembers her mother, Judy Garland.Also, David Bianculli reviews 'Attenborough's Journey,' a BBC America special that salutes the nature broadcaster.
07/05/2148m 34s

How Systemic Racism Determines Black Health & Wealth In Chicago

There is a 30-year gap in the life expectancy of some Black and white Chicagoans. Journalist Linda Villarosa talks about the link between racism and health outcomes, and tells her own family's story.Also, we remember rock historian Ed Ward, who died this week.
06/05/2148m 20s

Alison Bechdel On 'The Secret To Superhuman Strength'

Bechdel's new graphic memoir is about her lifelong obsession with exercise. She says she has a "predisposition of being extremely self-conscious and very caught up in my head" — and exercise helps. Bechdel's previous graphic memoir, 'Fun Home,' was about coming out at age 19, and discovering her father had a secret gay life. It was adapted into a Tony Award-winning Broadway show. Also, Justin Chang reviews 'The Disciple,' a film about a man from Mumbai who aspires to be a great classical musician.
05/05/2145m 17s

The Social Lives Of Trees

Ecologist Suzanne Simard says trees are "social creatures" that communicate with each other in remarkable ways — including warning each other of danger and sharing nutrients at critical times. Her book is 'Finding the Mother Tree.' Also, classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz reviews a collection by composer Bernard Herrmann, best-known for the scores he wrote for Alfred Hitchcock.
04/05/2147m 31s

Former 'Pregnant Girl' Now Helps Other Teen Moms Succeed

In her new memoir, 'Pregnant Girl,' Nicole Lynn Lewis recalls feeling overwhelmed and isolated as a young mom in college. Now she runs an organization that is designed to support young parents with their education. We talk about her experience as a teen mom, the way society abandons young mothers — particularly young Black mothers — and how to help give young families the support they need to succeed.
03/05/2146m 23s

Best Of: Stephen Colbert / NPR's 50th Anniversary

Stephen Colbert has been taping 'The Late Show' without a studio audience during the pandemic — but he's not always alone. Sometimes his wife Evie is in the room. If she laughs, he knows he's on the right track. "I got into show business in a way to not be alone. Like a lot of comedians, I'm a bit of a broken toy," he says. NPR's program, 'All Things Considered' debuted on May 3, 1971. 'ATC' creator Bill Siemering and former co-host Susan Stamberg look back on the early years of the network, NPR's mission, and Stamberg's pioneering role as the first woman to anchor a daily national news program in America.
01/05/2149m 18s

Remembering Astronaut Michael Collins

While Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin made their historic walk on the moon, Lt. Col. Michael Collins orbited above in the Apollo 11 command capsule, waiting to rendezvous with them. For a time, on the far side of the moon, he was cut off from everyone. "It's utterly quiet. Completely serene," he told Terry Gross in 1988. "I knew that over on the other side there were 3 billion on that funny looking little planet out there, and two on the surface of the moon, but where I was that was all. Just me." Collins died Wednesday at the age of 90. Also, we hear an excerpt of our interview with Kate Winslet. She's starring in the new HBO series 'Mare of Easttown.'And Justin Chang reviews the Swedish film 'About Endlessness,' which he calls "beautifully bittersweet"
30/04/2147m 37s

Novelist Imbolo Mbue

Set in a fictional African village in the 1980s, Mbue's latest novel, 'How Beautiful We Were,' is a David and Goliath tale about a group of villagers who take on an American oil company. Guest host Arun Venugopal talks with Mbue about her childhood in Cameroon, becoming a U.S. citizen, and the activist that inspired her new novel. Her first book, 'Behold the Dreamers,' was a 'New York Times' bestseller.Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews a new collection of Louis Armstrong studio recordings. And Maureen Corrigan reviews two stories about the bargains we strike for love — 'Early Morning Riser' and 'Secrets of Happiness.'
29/04/2147m 4s

50 Years Of NPR: Radio Legends Susan Stamberg & Bill Siemering

NPR's program, 'All Things Considered' debuted on May 3, 1971. 'ATC' creator Bill Siemering and former co-host Susan Stamberg look back on the early years of the network, NPR's mission, and Stamberg's pioneering role as the first woman to anchor a daily national news program in America.
28/04/2148m 37s

Catching Up with Stephen Colbert

Stephen Colbert has been taping 'The Late Show' without a studio audience during the pandemic — but he's not always alone. Sometimes his wife Evie is in the room. If she laughs, he knows he's on the right track. "I got into show business in a way to not be alone. Like a lot of comedians, I'm a bit of a broken toy," he says. Colbert and Terry Gross catch up on the past four years, since the Trump administration and COVID-19 changed his comedy.
27/04/2147m 56s

How Processed Food Companies Get Us 'Hooked' On Junk

Journalist Michael Moss says processed foods can be as addictive as cocaine, heroin and cigarettes. In his new book, 'Hooked,' Moss explores how these companies appeal to our senses, nostalgia and brain chemistry to keep us snacking. "It's inexpensive, it's legal, it's everywhere," Moss says. "And the advertising from the companies is cueing us to remember those products and we want those products constantly."Ken Tucker reviews Carsie Blanton's album 'Love & Rage.'
26/04/2147m 13s

Best Of: 'Resistance' Podcast Host Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr. / Courtney B. Vance

Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr. lost a close friend from college to police violence. His Spotify podcast, 'Resistance,' explores different aspects of the movement for Black lives — including Tejan-Thomas Jr.'s personal history. We also talk about his childhood in Sierra Leone during the civil war.Courtney B. Vance got his start in the theater, with a breakout role in the August Wilson play 'Fences' on Broadway. We talk about his origin story and his recent roles as Aretha Franklin's father, Rev. C.L. Franklin, in 'Genius: Aretha,' and as the show-stopping attorney Johnnie Cochran, in 'The People v. O.J. Simpson.'
24/04/2150m 38s

Pixar 'Soul' Creators Pete Docter & Kemp Powers

The Oscar-nominated animated film imagines a place where souls are matched with unique passions. It follows Joe Gardner, a middle school band teacher and aspiring jazz musician, who nearly dies right after securing the gig of his life. Pete Docter and Kemp Powers say their movie is meant to challenge conventional notions of success and failure. We talk about lost souls, appreciating the small things, and early versions of the film. Justin Chang reviews 'Moffie,' about a white gay teen in Apartheid South Africa.
23/04/2146m 30s

The Social Psychologist Who Works To Reduce Harm In Policing

Yale professor Dr. Phillip Atiba Goff co-founded the Center for Policing Equity, which collects data on police behavior from 18,000 law enforcement agencies across the country. He says most people think of racism as an issue of character and ignorance. But, he says, focusing on changing racist attitudes is "a bad way to stop the behavior," He says. "The best way to regulate behavior is to regulate behavior. And that's what we can do in policing. That's what we can do in our communities. That's what we can do with policies." Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Nives' by Italian writer Sacha Naspini, newly translated into English.
22/04/2148m 21s

Courtney B. Vance On Playing Rev. C.L. Franklin & Johnnie Cochran

Courtney B. Vance got his start in the theater, with a breakout role in the August Wilson play 'Fences' on Broadway. We talk about his origin story and his recent roles as Aretha Franklin's father, Rev. C.L. Franklin, in 'Genius: Aretha,' and as the show-stopping attorney Johnnie Cochran, in 'The People v. O.J. Simpson.' Vance attributes much of his career success to the dean of the Yale Drama School when he was there, Lloyd Richards, who lifted up Black performers.
21/04/2147m 16s

Growing Up In A Cult, Lauren Hough Freed Herself By Writing

Hough was 15 when her family left the Children of God cult. Afterward, she struggled to face the trauma of her past. At 18 she joined the Air Force during "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," and was discharged for being gay. "I spent a long time lying to myself more than, I think, anyone else. Telling myself that my childhood didn't affect me, telling myself that the military didn't affect me," she says. "I think writing, more than anything, brought that out. ... You kind of have to tell the truth or it's crap and you know it." Her new collection of personal essays is 'Leaving Isn't the Hardest Thing.' Podcast critic Nick Quah reviews 'Renegades,' Spotify's podcast of President Obama and Bruce Springsteen in conversation. And jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a tribute album to Ornette Coleman by Miguel Zenón.
20/04/2148m 1s

'How To Be An Adult' & 'Real American' Author Julie Lythcott-Haims

Former Stanford University undergraduate dean Julie Lythcott-Haims' new book, 'Your Turn: How to Be an Adult,' is a handbook on adulthood, offering insights and strategies on education and career choices, building friendships and coping with setbacks. Her 2017 memoir, 'Real American,' is the story of her coming to terms with her racial identity. Her father was a successful African American physician, her mother a white British woman. We talk about both books and her upbringing.Also John Powers reviews the first English translation of Kaoru Takamura's 'Lady Joker,' a crime novel that sold a million copies and spawned a movie and TV series in Japan.
19/04/2149m 14s

Best Of: Choreographer Twyla Tharp / Henry Louis Gates On 'The Black Church'

'Twyla Moves,' a new documentary by PBS American Masters, tells the story of the legendary choreographer and dancer, who got her start performing on subway platforms and rooftops in the 1960s. "If it was kind of level, it was fair territory," she tells Terry Gross.Kevin Whitehead reviews a newly unearthed album from Hasaan Ibn Ali.'Finding Your Roots' host Henry Louis Gates has a new book and PBS series called 'The Black Church.' Gates describes the Black church as "the cultural cauldron Black people created to combat a system designed in every way to crush their spirit." We'll talk about the bargain Gates made with Jesus when he was 12 in an attempt to save his mother's life.
17/04/2149m 58s

Native Peoples' 'Long, Brutal Fight For Survival'

Louise Erdrich's novel, 'The Night Watchman,' was inspired by her grandfather, a chairman of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa who fought a Congressional initiative to move indigenous peoples off their land and into cities. Erdrich says the policy amounted to tribal termination. "Termination was a way to finally resolve what Congress thought of as 'the Indian problem,'" she says.David Bianculli reviews HBO's 'Mare of Easttown,' starring Kate Winslet.
16/04/2147m 52s

'Resistance' Podcast Host On The Fight For Black Lives

Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr. lost a close friend from college to police violence. His Spotify podcast, 'Resistance,' explores different aspects of the movement for Black lives — including Tejan-Thomas Jr.'s personal history. We talk about his childhood in Sierra Leone, his poetry, and losing his parents at a young age.
15/04/2145m 53s

The 'Secret History' Of The Sackler Family & The Opioid Crisis

The Sackler family owns Purdue Pharma, which made billions of dollars selling OxyContin, an opiate painkiller stronger than morphine. Introduced in 1996, OxyContin has been largely blamed for the opioid addiction crisis that followed. The Sacklers and the company are currently facing more than 2,500 lawsuits related to its practices. We talk with journalist Patrick Radden Keefe about the development of OxyContin, what the family knew about the danger of the drug, and how they have tried to thwart his reporting. His book is 'Empire of Pain.'
14/04/2147m 5s

Henry Louis Gates Jr. On The Black Church

The 'Finding Your Roots' host has a new book and PBS series called 'The Black Church.' Gates describes the Black church as "the cultural cauldron Black people created to combat a system designed in every way to crush their spirit." We'll talk about the bargain Gates made with Jesus when he was 12 in an attempt to save his mother's life. He'll tell us how that bargain changed him, and how his relationship to the church has changed over the years. Maureen Corrigan reviews the new novel 'The Final Revival of Opal and Nev,' about a '70s rock duo.
13/04/2148m 13s

Leslie Odom Jr. / 'Promising Young Woman' Filmmaker Emerald Fennell

Tony and Grammy-winning actor Leslie Odom Jr. is best-known for his role as Aaron Burr in 'Hamilton.' Now he stars as Sam Cooke in Regina King's film 'One Night in Miami,' which imagines a night where Cassius Clay, Malcolm X, Jim Brown and Cooke meet. Odom talks about studying Cooke's voice, hearing Burr's song "Wait for It" for the first time, and how the musical 'Rent' inspired him as a teen. Odom is nominated for two Oscars — for his role as Sam Cooke and for his original song, "Speak Now." In the dark comedy 'Promising Young Woman,' Cassie (Carey Mulligan) works at a coffee shop by day, and hunts sexual predators by night. She goes to bars, pretends to be falling down drunk — and then confronts the men who try to take advantage of her. Cassie is avenging the death of her best friend, who, the movie implies, has died by suicide after being raped at medical school. Writer and director Emerald Fennell says the film was inspired, in part, by the messages other movies send about alcohol and consent. We talk with Fennell about her Oscar-nominated film, her work on 'Killing Eve' and her portrayal of Camilla Parker Bowles on 'The Crown.'
12/04/2148m 31s

Best Of: Brandi Carlile / Palestinian Cookbook Author Reem Kassis

Six-time Grammy winner Brandi Carlile got her start onstage as a kid, singing backup for an Elvis impersonator. Her new memoir, 'Broken Horses,' is about her early life and the family of misfits she's built. "I think I'm starting to really feel sort of solid and loved in my world. Like maybe I've kind of finally found my place," she says.Maureen Corrigan reviews Kaitlyn Greenidge's novel 'Libertie.' Palestinian cookbook author Reem Kassis began gathering family recipes after the birth of her first child. The recipes, she says, "could be the story of any and every Palestinian family." Her new cookbook is 'The Arabesque Table.'
10/04/2150m 26s

Prolific Background Singer Merry Clayton

Singer Merry Clayton did the iconic background vocals of the 1969 Rolling Stones song "Gimme Shelter." But despite the fame and success of the record, Clayton remained largely anonymous. Until, that is, she was featured as one of the backup singers in the 2014 Oscar-winning documentary '20 Feet from Stardom.' Over the course of her career, Clayton sang with Ray Charles, Joe Cocker, Carole King and many others. Now she's got a new album — where she's front and center — called 'Beautiful Scars.' She spoke with Terry Gross in 2013. Also, we'll hear some of our 2020 interview with filmmaker Craig Foster. His Netflix documentary 'My Octopus Teacher' is nominated for an Oscar.
09/04/2148m 23s

Choreographer Twyla Tharp

'Twyla Moves,' a new documentary by PBS American Masters, tells the story of the legendary choreographer and dancer, who got her start performing on subway platforms and rooftops in the 1960s. "If it was kind of level, it was fair territory," she says. We talk about starting an all-women dance company, mixing classical and modern dance, and choreographing dancers over Zoom in the pandemic. Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews 'The Nevers' on HBO Max.
08/04/2148m 30s

Palestinian Cookbook Author Reem Kassis

Reem Kassis began gathering family recipes after the birth of her first child. The recipes, she says, "could be the story of any and every Palestinian family." We talk about her favorite fried egg recipe, the importance of za'atar seasoning, and her unlikely friendship with Israeli chef Michael Solomonov. Her new cookbook is 'The Arabesque Table.'
07/04/2148m 26s

The Intersection Of Black Performance, Joy & Pain

What do 'Soul Train' and Whitney Houston tell us about race in the U.S? Poet and culture critic Hanif Abdurraqib's book, 'A Little Devil in America,' traces the history of Black performance through moments in pop culture, emphasizing the joy and excellence. He spoke with contributor Arun Venugopal. Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews a posthumous record by jazz pianist Hasaan Ibn Ali, and book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews 'Libertie,' a new novel by Kaitlyn Greenidge.
06/04/2149m 33s

Brandi Carlile

The six-time Grammy winner got her start onstage as a kid, singing backup for an Elvis impersonator. Her new memoir, 'Broken Horses,' is about her early life and the family of misfits she's built. "I think I'm starting to really feel sort of solid and loved in my world. Like maybe I've kind of finally found my place," Carlile says.
05/04/2148m 46s

Brandi Carlile

The six-time Grammy winner got her start onstage as a kid, singing backup for an Elvis impersonator. Her new memoir, 'Broken Horses,' is about her early life and the family of misfits she's built. "I think I'm starting to really feel sort of solid and loved in my world. Like maybe I've kind of finally found my place," Carlile says.
05/04/2146m 58s

Best Of: The Amazing Lives Of Migratory Birds / 'Lovecraft Country' Creator

Author and bird researcher Scott Weidensaul shares amazing stories of the billions of migratory birds that journey over our heads every year, how they manage their feats physically, and how they're threatened by economic development and climate change. His new book is 'A World on the Wing.'Ken Tucker reviews the first full-length solo album from gospel singer Elizabeth King.Also, we hear from Misha Green, the creator of the HBO series 'Lovecraft Country,' which takes the real horrors of the Black experience in the 1950s and adds to it the supernatural terrors of the horror genre.
03/04/2149m 27s

Christopher Meloni / Remembering Larry McMurtry & G. Gordon Liddy

We remember novelist and screenwriter Larry McMurtry who died last week at the age of 84. Raised on a Texas ranch, McMurtry wrote about the American West in the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel 'Lonesome Dove', which was later made into a beloved miniseries. He also authored 'The Last Picture Show' and 'Terms of Endearment,' both of which were adapted into films.Also, we listen back to some of our interview with actor Christopher Meloni. He's best known for his 12 seasons as detective Elliot Stabler on 'Law & Order: SVU.' He's returning to the franchise, starring in the new series 'Law & Order: Organized Crime.' And we'll hear some of Terry's 1980 interview with Watergate conspirator G. Gordon Liddy, who died Tuesday.
02/04/2148m 58s

Tackling Child Poverty Through COVID Relief

'New York Times' reporter Jason DeParle says a provision in the new COVID relief package has the makings of a policy revolution — and "would roughly cut child poverty in half." Qualifying families with children will receive between $250 and $300 a month per child, money families can spend however they want. This kind of child allowance is the norm in other affluent countries, like Canada and the U.K., but is "stunning in the American context," he says. Also, John Powers reviews the new Tunisian film 'The Man Who Sold His Skin,' nominated for the Oscar for Best International Feature.
01/04/2146m 7s

The High Stakes Of Amazon's 'One-Click America'

ProPublica journalist Alec MacGillis says a union vote by Amazon workers in Alabama could determine "what life is going to look like for the working class in America in years to come." We talk with MacGillis about how Amazon's size, aggressive business practices and warehouse working conditions are drawing the attention of union organizers and anti-trust crusaders in Congress. His new book is 'Fulfillment: Winning and Losing in One-Click America.' Also, Kevin Whitehead reviews Erwin Helfer's record 'Celebrate the Journey.'
31/03/2147m 41s

'Lovecraft Country' Creator Misha Green

The HBO series 'Lovecraft Country' takes the real horrors of the Black experience in the 1950s and adds to it the supernatural terrors of the horror genre. We talk to series creator Misha Green about reclaiming the genre space for people of color, her writers' room, and how scary movies make her feel brave. Also, TV critic David Bianculli reviews the new Ken Burns PBS documentary series 'Hemingway.'
30/03/2147m 55s

The Amazing Lives Of Migratory Birds

Author Scott Weidensaul talks about the millions of birds flying unseen over our heads in the night sky, how the bar-tailed godwit can fly more than a week over water without stopping, and how new tracking technology may help with strategies to keep them alive. His new book is 'A World on the Wing.'Also, Ken Tucker reviews the first full-length solo album from gospel singer Elizabeth King.
29/03/2146m 46s

Best Of: The Making Of 'Soul' / The Afterlife Of Mass Incarceration

The Oscar-nominated animated film 'Soul' imagines a place where souls are matched with unique passions. It follows Joe Gardner, a middle school band teacher and aspiring jazz musician, who nearly dies right after securing the gig of his life. Filmmakers Pete Docter and Kemp Powers say their movie is meant to challenge conventional notions of success and failure. There are 45,000 laws, policies and administrative sanctions in the U.S. that target people with criminal records. We talk with University of Chicago sociologist Reuben Jonathan Miller about how they affect people's lives. "I want us to think about all these traps that we've created, we've produced, and I want us to unmake them," Miller says. His book is 'Halfway Home.'
27/03/2150m 15s

Actors Riz Ahmed / Kathryn Hahn

Riz Ahmed plays a drummer who loses his hearing in 'Sound of Metal.' To prepare for the role, he immersed himself in deaf culture — an experience that changed the way he thought about communication and listening. The film earned him a Best Actor Oscar nomination. Also, we listen back to our 2019 interview with actor Kathryn Hahn. She's known for her roles in 'Parks & Rec,' 'Mrs. Fletcher,' and 'I Love Dick.' Now she's co-starring in 'WandaVision' as a nosey and mysterious neighbor. "The most complicated and messy roles I've been able to get have been offered through women," she says. "I'm just so buoyed and galvanized that the juiciest part of [my career] has been post-kids."
26/03/2148m 21s

The Threat Of Domestic Terrorism

Elizabeth Neumann resigned from the Department of Homeland Security in April of 2020. She says the Trump administration ignored the threat — and fanned the flames — of violent domestic extremism. She's now co-director of the Republican Accountability Project, which pushes back on conspiracy theories and false claims that the election was stolen and is trying to hold accountable elected leaders who have supported those narratives.John Powers reviews the Danish film 'Another Round.'
25/03/2147m 53s
-
-
Heart UK
Mute/Un-mute