Fresh Air

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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: 1 hour 25 min ago

Actor Gary Cole On 'Veep' And Why 'Office Space' Endures

Thu, 05/12/2016 - 12:22pm

The actor, who plays a political consultant on Veep, tells Fresh Air he landed his first major TV role only after a number of other actors turned it down. "It was very, very fluke-ish," Cole says.

Cartoonist Daniel Clowes On Time Travel And Giving Readers Their Money's Worth

Thu, 05/12/2016 - 12:22pm

At 55, Clowes is one of the most influential artists in the independent comics world. His latest book, Patience, uses time travel to look at the ways random events can set a life on a new path.

Is America Engaged In A 'Vicious Cycle' Of Jailing The Poor?

Wed, 05/11/2016 - 12:25pm

There are almost 12 million admissions to local jails each year in the United States. Activist Nancy Fishman says that most of those jailed are poor people who are being held for low-level offenses.

Car Seat Headrest Is Gloriously Morose In 'Teens of Denial'

Wed, 05/11/2016 - 12:25pm

Will Toledo, the singer-songwriter who performs under the name Car Seat Headrest, is ambitious and passionate on his new album. Critic Ken Tucker says the record will make you want to sing along.

How Soul Great Clarence Carter Put Fame Records On The Map

Tue, 05/10/2016 - 12:24pm

Carter's influence on pop and soul predates his best-known hit, "Patches," and is still felt today. Rock historian Ed Ward revisits the early career and the lasting impact of the expert songwriter.

A Dying Coal Town Falls Into 'Fracking Frenzy' In 'Heat & Light'

Tue, 05/10/2016 - 12:24pm

Jennifer Haigh's new novel explores the fallout of the natural gas boom in a small Pennsylvania town. Critic Maureen Corrigan calls Heat & Light an "exquisitely designed, semi-satirical social novel."

Friend Or Fiend? 'Pit Bull' Explores The History Of America's Most Feared Dog

Tue, 05/10/2016 - 12:24pm

Author Bronwen Dickey says the idea of pit bulls as predators is based on myth and misinformation. In the early Hollywood era, Dickey says, the dogs were often chosen to appear in comedies.

7 Years Later, 'Good Wife' Ends As It Began: With Betrayal And Uncertainty

Mon, 05/09/2016 - 12:17pm

TV critic David Bianculli discusses the final episode of the CBS drama and the legacy of the show as a whole. "The Good Wife managed to be one of TV's best series for its entire run," he says.

Richard Russo Returns To North Bath, NY, In 'Everybody's Fool'

Mon, 05/09/2016 - 12:17pm

The Pulitzer-Prize winning author of Empire Falls says his characters are inspired by his parents' working-class World War II generation. Russo's new novel is set in a small town in upstate New York.

Fresh Air Weekend: A Personal History Of L.A. Punk; Comic Jerrod Carmichael

Sat, 05/07/2016 - 8:00am

John Doe, Exene Cervenka and Dave Alvin of X discuss punk's early days. Jerrod Carmichael says that the complicated family debates on his NBC comedy series are inspired by real life.

Power Trio Mixes Old And New, And The Result Is 'Perfection'

Fri, 05/06/2016 - 2:40pm

Jazz stars David Murray, Geri Allen and Terri Lyne Carrington first played together last year in New York. Now they come together with the new album, Perfection. Critic Kevin Whitehead has a review.

Superheroes Engage In All Out 'Civil War' In The Latest 'Captain America' Film

Fri, 05/06/2016 - 2:40pm

The new movie from Marvel Studios features almost all the members of the Avengers superhero collective. Critic David Edelstein calls it an irresistible hodgepodge of special effects and superheroes.

After 20 Years On The Job, NYC Police Officer Tells His Intense Stories

Fri, 05/06/2016 - 2:40pm

"Your heart is pounding; your adrenaline is shooting out of your ears," retired police officer Steve Osborne says. "And you got one second to get it right." Originally broadcast April 21, 2015.

Beyoncé Is 'At The Height Of Her Powers' In 'Lemonade'

Thu, 05/05/2016 - 12:37pm

The pop star's latest release extols the potency of black womanhood in the roles of mother, wife, lover and artist. Rock critic Ken Tucker calls Lemonade a feat of "invention and imagination."

Newly Released Documents Detail Traumas Of China's Cultural Revolution

Thu, 05/05/2016 - 12:37pm

Historian Frank Dikötter says newly opened archives offer fresh details about the chaos China experienced in the 1960s, when Chairman Mao urged students to take to the streets.

To Play Sports Under Taliban Rule, 'Different Kind Of Daughter' Dressed As A Boy

Wed, 05/04/2016 - 12:16pm

Growing up in the tribal region of Pakistan, Maria Toorpakai pretended she was a boy in order to compete as a weightlifter. Later she became an internationally known squash player.

From 'Once' To 'Sing Street': Director John Carney Infuses Movies With Music

Wed, 05/04/2016 - 12:16pm

The Irish director and screenwriter talks to Fresh Air's Ann Marie Baldonado about his new film, which tells the story of a young teenager in 1980s Dublin who discovers pop music and starts a band.

Remembering Jesuit Priest And Anti-War Activist Daniel Berrigan

Tue, 05/03/2016 - 3:04pm

Berrigan, who died Sunday, was a leading figure in the Catholic left. He and his brother Philip served prison time for burning draft cards to protest the Vietnam War. Originally broadcast in 1988.

Larry Wilmore On 'Breaking Taboos' At The White House Correspondents' Dinner

Tue, 05/03/2016 - 3:04pm

The Nightly Show host discusses his controversial performance at Saturday's event. He tells Fresh Air that his use of the N-word was an artistic decision.

A Personal History Of L.A. Punk: 'It Was A Free-For-All For Outcasts'

Mon, 05/02/2016 - 2:15pm

John Doe, Exene Cervenka and Dave Alvin of X join Fresh Air to discuss punk's early days. "Anybody could belong to punk that wanted to be there," Cervenka says. "[It] didn't matter how old you were."

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