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: 44 min 34 sec ago

'Wild! Wild! Wild!' Coheres As A Carefully Conceived Lark

4 hours 6 min ago

Linda Gail Lewis and Robbie Fulks have teamed up on a shrewd, witty album that's a throwback to the earliest era of rock n' roll — but it's not pickled in nostalgia.

Witty, Imaginative, Risky And Relentless — 'Flights' Soars

4 hours 6 min ago

Olga Tokarczuk's book won the 2018 Man Booker International Prize. Critic John Powers says the hard-to-classify work is positively exploding with maps, remembrances, riffs, history and more.

'It's Taken On A Whole Other Life,' Says 'Crazy Rich Asians' Author Kevin Kwan

4 hours 6 min ago

Kwan thought the screen adaptation of his bestselling novel might be a small independent film — instead it's been hailed as a groundbreaking moment for Hollywood casting.

(Image credit: Sanja Bucko/Warner Bros. Pictures)

Fresh Air Weekend: Aretha Franklin; 'Crazy Rich Asians'; 'A Girl's Guide To Missiles'

Sat, 08/18/2018 - 11:27am

The Queen of Soul died Thursday at 76. Film critic Justin Chang says Crazy Rich Asians lives up to expectations. And Karen Piper describes growing up on a weapons development site in the desert.

(Image credit: Frank Driggs Collection/Getty Images)

Novelist John Le Carré Reflects On His Own 'Legacy' Of Spying

Fri, 08/17/2018 - 12:30pm

Le Carré worked for MI5 and MI6 early in his career. "I felt I had to suppress my humanity," he said of those years. His novel A Legacy of Spies came out in 2017. Originally broadcast Sept. 5, 2017.

We Still Can't Comprehend The Power Of Aretha Franklin's Voice

Fri, 08/17/2018 - 10:55am

No one's voice has ever soared like this.

(Image credit: Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)

Aretha Franklin: The 'Fresh Air' Interview

Thu, 08/16/2018 - 9:15am

The Queen of Soul rarely gave interviews, so we were delighted when she sat down for a Fresh Air interview in 1999.

(Image credit: Frank Driggs Collection/Getty Images)

SOPHIE's Debut Album Is A Complex, Clamorous Pleasure

Wed, 08/15/2018 - 12:59pm

The singer-songwriter-producer just released OIL OF EVERY PEARL'S UN-INSIDES. Rock critic Ken Tucker finds an undercurrent of serenity in the organized chaos of SOPHIE's playful brand of noise pop.

Satire, Soap Opera, Duty, Devotion: 'Crazy Rich Asians' Is A Movie Milestone

Wed, 08/15/2018 - 12:59pm

The romantic comedy based on Kevin Kwan's 2013 novel has been saddled with cultural and commercial expectations. Critic Justin Chang was happy to find the film doesn't collapse under the weight.

2018 Revealed Just How Ill-Prepared We Are For Climate Change

Wed, 08/15/2018 - 12:59pm

Somini Sengupta, international climate reporter for The New York Times, discusses the dire consequences of rising temperatures, such as drought, famine, disease, war and increased migration.

'A Girl's Guide' To Growing Up On A Secretive Missile Test Site

Tue, 08/14/2018 - 1:04pm

When Karen Piper was 6, her family moved to the Mojave Desert. In A Girl's Guide To Missiles she describes how her parents designed weapons, but she didn't understand how it all connected to war.

Andy Biskin And 16 Tons Revisit 'Songs From The Alan Lomax Collection'

Tue, 08/14/2018 - 1:04pm

Early in his career, clarinetist Andy Biskin worked as an assistant to the folklorist Alan Lomax. Biskin's new album features new settings of songs drawn from Lomax's The Folk Songs of North America.

A Struggling Surfer Gets 'A Sign' In Jim Gavin's 'Lodge 49'

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 12:59pm

The creator of the AMC comedy talks about strip mall culture, why he likes to write characters who are fools, and explains why he defines success as "just sticking around."

Sire Records Co-Founder Seymour Stein Reflects On Life In 'The Pursuit Of Music'

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 12:59pm

In his autobiography, Siren Song, Stein writes about how he started out in the music business as a teen before going on to sign groundbreaking artists like Talking Heads, Madonna, Ice-T and k.d. lang.

With Wit And Sadness, 'Baby, You're Gonna Be Mine' Has Echoes Of Salinger

Mon, 08/13/2018 - 12:59pm

Critic Maureen Corrigan says Kevin Wilson's funny, raw, beautiful writing reminds her of J. D. Salinger. He starts with a goofy premise and then draws deep emotional truths.

(Image credit: Emily Bogle/NPR)

Fresh Air Weekend: A 'Tale' Inspired By Real-Life Trauma; Reducing Mass Incarceration

Sat, 08/11/2018 - 8:00am

Jennifer Fox's HBO film, The Tale, is based on the sexual abuse she experienced as a child. Justin Chang reviews BlacKkKlansmen. Julian Adler and Judge Victoria Pratt discuss alternatives to jail.

(Image credit: Kyle Kaplan/HBO)

'BlacKkKlansman' Is A Blisteringly Funny, Urgent Story Of Race And Identity

Fri, 08/10/2018 - 12:29pm

In 1979, a black police named Ron Stallworth successfully infiltrated a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. Director Spike Lee presents the story with humor and searing honesty in BlacKkKlansman.

David Sedaris On The Life-Altering And Mundane Pages Of His Old Diaries

Fri, 08/10/2018 - 12:29pm

Sedaris' Theft by Finding is a collection of excerpts from those diaries. In it, he revisits major turning points, including how he met his longtime boyfriend. Originally broadcast May 31, 2017.

Journalist: Fear Is A 'Very Powerful Tool' In Trump's Approach To Immigration

Thu, 08/09/2018 - 12:26pm

Atlantic writer Franklin Foer says President Trump has "radicalized" Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), opening the door for the agency to deport any undocumented immigrant.

(Image credit: Charles Reed/U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement/AP)

Opinion: Why The Term 'Deep State' Speaks To Conspiracy Theorists

Thu, 08/09/2018 - 9:14am

Linguist Geoff Nunberg says it's common for citizens of democracies to express concerns about the government. But the term "deep state" refers to something more nefarious — and conspiratorial.

(Image credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)




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