Fresh Air

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This one-hour program features Terry Gross' in-depth interviews with prominent cultural and entertainment figures, as well as distinguished experts on current affairs and news.
Updated: 1 hour 9 min ago

For Duo Tennis, Pop Is A Natural Language

Mon, 09/15/2014 - 9:06am

Can you re-invent lively pop from the distant past? Fresh Air music critic Milo Miles says the songwriting team Tennis does just that with their new third album, Ritual in Repeat.

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Futuristic 'Bone Clocks' Encompasses A Strange, Rich World Of Soul-Stealers

Thu, 09/11/2014 - 1:57pm

David Mitchell's latest fantasy is an odyssey into the dark side, spanning from 1984 to 2043. It's about a teenager who runs away from her London home and becomes prey to a ghastly gang of mystics.

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As 'Boardwalk Empire' Comes To Close, Creator Reminisces About How It Started

Thu, 09/11/2014 - 1:51pm

The HBO show began its final season Sunday. Terence Winter says he wrote the Prohibition-era drama in part to work with Martin Scorsese. It was "something I couldn't possibly ... pass up," he says.

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Islamic State Was Fueled By 'Epic American Failure In Iraq,' Reporter Says

Wed, 09/10/2014 - 12:37pm

The New York Times Baghdad bureau chief Tim Arango has been reporting from Iraq for five years and has watched the rise of the Islamic State militants. He gives Fresh Air his take on the situation.

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3 Roosevelts Come Alive In PBS Documentary, Ken Burns' Best Yet

Wed, 09/10/2014 - 11:59am

A 14-hour biography of Theodore, Eleanor and Franklin Delano starts Sunday. Actors including Paul Giamatti and Meryl Streep put on Emmy-worthy vocal performances reading from an Emmy-worthy script.

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How The Four Seasons Clashed, Dealt With The Mob And Made Lasting Hits

Tue, 09/09/2014 - 1:33pm

Bob Gaudio wrote most of The Four Seasons' hits, some of which are compiled in a new anthology. He tells Fresh Air about the band's history, including why its songs had some "anger" in them.

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In A Brilliantly Disorienting Film, A Teenager Is 'Starred Up' To An Adult Prison

Mon, 09/08/2014 - 12:45pm

The British drama depicts remarkable characters, including an angry teenager who meets two father figures behind bars. It's a prison film that's shattering beyond physical violence.

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How 'Gatsby' Went From A Moldering Flop To A Great American Novel

Mon, 09/08/2014 - 12:25pm

In So We Read On, Maureen Corrigan looks at the story behind The Great Gatsby, from F. Scott Fitzgerald's life to the era in which it's set. She says it's her favorite novel, but it wasn't always.

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Fresh Air Weekend: Neil Oxman, The New Pornographers, Dana Goldstein

Sat, 09/06/2014 - 10:54am

Neil Oxman, who has managed political ad campaigns, talks about what works and what doesn't; Ken Tucker reviews The New Pornographers' new album; Dana Goldstein talks about her book The Teachers Wars.

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With Age, Joan Rivers Learned To Say Anything: 'It Has Freed Me Totally'

Fri, 09/05/2014 - 2:28pm

The comedian died Thursday at the age of 81. Rivers talked with Fresh Air in 1991, 2010 and 2012 about how her comedy evolved — and why she didn't care what others thought of her.

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In Tenor Saxophonist Mark Turner's New Album, The Music Unfolds Like A Narrative

Thu, 09/04/2014 - 12:56pm

Turner's new quartet album Lathe of Heaven gets its name from Ursula K. LeGuin's novel. A lot of action happens at thoughtful medium tempos, and there's beautiful dissonance in the two-horn harmonies.

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Reporter Reflects On Obama's Stalled Effort to Close Guantanamo

Thu, 09/04/2014 - 12:56pm

New York Times' Charlie Savage visited the prison last month. He tells Fresh Air that it is decaying and exorbitantly expensive, but still holds 149 detainees who can't be sent anywhere else.

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In 'The Chair,' Two Filmmakers Make Movies From The Same Script

Thu, 09/04/2014 - 12:56pm

The new 10-episode reality show on Starz follows Anna Martemucci, a graduate of NYU film school, and Shane Dawson, who's been making YouTube videos for eight years. They compete for $250,000.

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'10:04': A Strange, Spectacular Novel Connecting Several Plotlines

Wed, 09/03/2014 - 1:26pm

Ben Lerner's new novel is about a writer who gets an advance for a second work of fiction, is diagnosed with an aortic heart valve problem and agrees to be the sperm donor for a close friend.

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Campaign Expert Neil Oxman Talks About How He Makes Political Ads

Wed, 09/03/2014 - 1:08pm

Oxman is the founder of The Campaign Group, which has managed ad campaigns for more than 700 races around the country. Ahead of the Congressional elections, he talks about what works and what doesn't.

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The New Pornographers Return With A 'Celebration Record' That's Fun To Figure Out

Wed, 09/03/2014 - 1:08pm

Brill Bruisers is a collection of lushly arranged and harmonized pop. While Neko Case, Dan Bejar and A.C. Newman make moody music individually, there's a brightness when they come together.

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The Story Of Little Feat's Fame, Destruction And Revival

Mon, 09/01/2014 - 12:39pm

The archetypal '70s band had a charismatic frontman and wonderful songs, but they also had drug problems and kept breaking up. Their Warner Bros. recordings are in a new box set called Rad Gumbo.

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Dom Flemons Holds On To Those Old-Time Roots

Mon, 09/01/2014 - 12:39pm

Prospect Hill is Flemons' first album since leaving the band Carolina Chocolate Drops. By coincidence, the multi-instrumentalist recorded it the day Pete Seeger died. Originally broadcast July 30.

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Florida-Grown Fiction: Hiaasen Satirizes The Sunshine State

Fri, 08/29/2014 - 12:14pm

Novelist and Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen writes with passion about the state he loves. His book, Bad Monkey, is an offbeat murder mystery set in Key West. Originally broadcast June 13, 2013.

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John Waters Hitchhikes Across America, And Lives To Write About It

Fri, 08/29/2014 - 12:14pm

The 68-year-old film director hitchhiked from Baltimore to San Francisco for his book Carsick. He says hitchhiking is "the worst beauty regimen ever." Originally broadcast June 10.

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