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Hosted by Terry Gross, Fresh Air from WHYY is the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues. One of public radio's most popular programs, Fresh Air features intimate conversations with today's biggest luminaries.
Updated: 31 min 2 sec ago

'War Dogs' Puts A Satirical Spin On The Business Of War

Fri, 08/19/2016 - 12:15pm

Todd Phillips' new comedy, which is loosely based on a true story, follows two 20-somethings from Miami who become international arms dealers. Critic John Powers calls War Dogs "jauntily enjoyable."

'Unheard Bird' Gives Fresh Insight Into Charlie Parker's Musical Genius

Fri, 08/19/2016 - 12:15pm

Decades after Parker's death, a new album compiles previously unknown performances by the alto sax legend. Critic Kevin Whitehead says the record will please both jazz experts and casual listeners.

Novelist's 'Disgruntled' Heroine Is Drawn From Her Own Childhood

Fri, 08/19/2016 - 12:15pm

Asali Solomon's novel is about a girl growing up in West Philadelphia whose parents were black nationalists. "My parents taught us to revere Africa," she says. Originally broadcast Feb. 5, 2015.

Bossacucanova's 'Best Of' Album Pulses With Lovely, Lively Music

Thu, 08/18/2016 - 12:11pm

The Brazilian trio, which won a Grammy in 2002, is known for mixing new and classic bossa nova tunes with electronica. Critic Milo Miles says The Best of Bossacucanova has a "captivating flow."

Eating Yogurt Is Not Enough: Rebalancing The Ecosystem Of 'The Microbes Within Us'

Thu, 08/18/2016 - 12:11pm

Ed Yong, author of I Contain Multitudes, says someday we might be able to improve our health by taking probiotics, but "we are still in the very early stages of working out how to do this."

'Hillbilly Elegy' Recalls A Childhood Where Poverty Was 'The Family Tradition'

Wed, 08/17/2016 - 12:38pm

J.D. Vance grew up in a Rust Belt town in Ohio, in a family from the hills of eastern Kentucky. His new memoir details the social isolation, poverty and addiction that afflict poor white communities.

Earls Of Leicester Mix Bluegrass With Gospel And Honky-Tonk On 'Rattle & Roar'

Wed, 08/17/2016 - 12:31pm

The band, which began as a tribute to the The Foggy Mountain Boys, won a Grammy for their debut album in 2015. Critic Ken Tucker says the Earls' new record, Rattle & Roar, lives up to its title.

'Roaring Wind' Examines Extreme Weather, And The Power Of Air

Tue, 08/16/2016 - 12:26pm

Biologist Bill Streever sailed from Texas to Guatemala while doing research for his new book, And Soon I Heard a Roaring Wind. He says the wind was working against him "most of the time."

Snark Aside, Julie Klausner Says 'Difficult People' Is Inspired By Love

Tue, 08/16/2016 - 12:26pm

Klausner plays an unsuccessful comic who quips about celebrities in her Hulu series. She says that she and her co-star Billy Eichner bonded over their shared love of show business and pop culture.

'Trials Of The Earth' Shows The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Of Pioneer Life

Mon, 08/15/2016 - 2:00pm

Born in Arkansas around 1866, Mary Mann Hamilton was one of the first women to homestead in the Mississippi Delta. Critic Maureen Corrigan calls her memoir a historical and literary treasure.

Creamed, Canned And Frozen: How The Great Depression Revamped U.S. Diets

Mon, 08/15/2016 - 1:57pm

During the Depression, cheap, nutritious and filling food was prioritized — often at the expense of taste. Jane Ziegelman and Andy Coe, authors of A Square Meal, discuss food trends of the time.

Fresh Air Weekend: Meryl Streep; A Novel Take On Gymnastics; Colson Whitehead

Sat, 08/13/2016 - 8:00am

Streep discusses singing badly in her new film, Florence Foster Jenkins. Maureen Corrigan reviews You Will Know Me, by Megan Abbott. Whitehead's Underground Railroad is a literal train to freedom.

Robbers And Rangers Collide In 'Hell Or High Water'

Fri, 08/12/2016 - 12:15pm

Two masked robbers clean out small branches of a Texas bank in David Mackenzie's new neo-Western. Critic David Edelstein calls Hell or High Water a work of "broad scale and deep feeling."

From Gladiator Duels To Caesar's Last Words: The Myths Of Ancient Rome

Fri, 08/12/2016 - 12:15pm

Historian Mary Beard says many of our popular notions about the empire are based on culture rather than fact. Her new book is called SPQR. Originally broadcast Nov. 30, 2015.

Inside The Islamic State's Movement To Spread Terror 'All Over The World'

Thu, 08/11/2016 - 1:24pm

New York Times reporter Rukmini Callimachi says ISIS' recruiting efforts focus on both the "mentally unwell" and those who have been "radicalized since birth."

'It's A Playground': Meryl Streep On Acting With Abandon

Wed, 08/10/2016 - 1:30pm

In her new film, Streep plays Florence Foster Jenkins, a socialite who didn't let her less-than-great voice stop her from becoming an opera singer. Streep says she can relate to that kind of passion.

From Brexit To The U.S. Presidential Race, Musicians Respond To Political Turmoil

Tue, 08/09/2016 - 12:19pm

Critic Ken Tucker reviews new music by the British punk band The Mekons and the American country-rock band The Mavericks. Both groups have recorded new songs that were inspired by recent news events.

Jacqueline Woodson's 'Brooklyn' Is Full Of Dreams And Danger

Tue, 08/09/2016 - 12:19pm

The National Book Award winner's new novel is based in part on her memories of growing up in Brooklyn in the 1970s. Woodson describes the teen years as an "amazing and urgent moment" in life.

Novel Explores The Fierce And Frenzied World Of Competitive Gymnastics

Mon, 08/08/2016 - 2:01pm

Megan Abbott's new book takes readers deep into the intense, vacuum-sealed universe of young female gymnasts and their parents. Critic Maureen Corrigan says You Will Know Me is worthy of a gold medal.

Colson Whitehead's 'Underground Railroad' Is A Literal Train To Freedom

Mon, 08/08/2016 - 2:01pm

As a child, Whitehead was surprised to learn that escaped slaves did not ride an actual subway. His new novel follows Cora, a young slave who has escaped a Georgia plantation and is heading north.

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