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: 48 min 26 sec ago

'Fresh Air' Remembers 'Billy Bathgate' Author E L. Doctorow

Fri, 07/24/2015 - 12:21pm

Doctorow, who died Tuesday at the age of 84, was the author of dozens of novels, many of which combined fictional characters and real people in a historical context. Originally broadcast in 1989.

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Rediscovering The Thrill Of George Balanchine's New York City Ballet

Fri, 07/24/2015 - 12:21pm

Lloyd Schwartz discusses the timeless appeal of the late choreographer George Balanchine. "[He] was our Shakespeare. ... watching a Balanchine ballet is like watching music come alive," he says.

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A Holocaust Survivor Searches For Her Past In Christian Petzold's 'Phoenix'

Fri, 07/24/2015 - 12:21pm

A concentration camp survivor seeks a reunion with the husband who may have betrayed her in a new film set in post-war Berlin. Critic David Edelstein calls Phoenix a "morbidly romantic drama."

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Infidelity Is Steeped In Suspense In 'Among The Ten Thousand Things'

Thu, 07/23/2015 - 12:51pm

Julia Pierpont's debut novel opens with a young girl's discovery of her father's infidelity. Maureen Corrigan says that what follows is so unexpected and tense that it's a "fresh pleasure to read."

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From Upspeak To Vocal Fry: Are We 'Policing' Young Women's Voices?

Thu, 07/23/2015 - 12:49pm

Journalist Jessica Grose, linguistics professor Penny Eckert and speech pathologist Susan Sankin discuss upspeak, vocal fry and why women's voices are changing — and whether or not that's a problem.

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Reissue Of Thelonious Monk's 'Riverside Recordings' Shows A Star On The Rise

Wed, 07/22/2015 - 12:29pm

Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a reissue of The Complete Riverside Recordings of pianist Thelonious Monk. He says it's really the story of two men: Monk and late record producer Orrin Keepnews.

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Jake Gyllenhaal On Throwing (And Taking) Punches: 'It's Very Primal'

Wed, 07/22/2015 - 12:29pm

In Southpaw, Gyllenhaal plays a boxer who grew up in foster care and is struggling to become a father to his daughter. "I don't like getting hit, but it was important for the movie," he says.

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'Sonic Trickster' Miguel Blends Genres And Melodies On 'Wildheart'

Tue, 07/21/2015 - 1:03pm

Singer-songwriter Miguel mixes rock, pop, hip-hop, reggae and funk on his new album. Critic Ken Tucker says the musical slight-of-hand that results is "excitingly diverse and vivid."

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A Downtrodden L.A. Corner Inspires Comedy And Friendship In 'Tangerine'

Tue, 07/21/2015 - 1:02pm

Director Sean Baker wanted to make a film about L.A.'s transgender sex workers, but first he needed to find someone who knew that world well. Then he met Mya Taylor, and together they made Tangerine.

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Revisiting The Career Of Gospel-Singer-Turned-Hit-Maker Garnet Mimms

Mon, 07/20/2015 - 12:31pm

All but forgotten today, Garnet Mimms was one of the early voices of soul. Now, Looking For You, a new collection of his records, is available on Kent Records. Rock historian Ed Ward has Mimms' story.

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At 76, Actor Ian McKellen Embodies An Older Sherlock In 'Mr. Holmes'

Mon, 07/20/2015 - 12:31pm

The acclaimed British actor talks about playing a 93-year-old Sherlock Holmes, serving as grand marshal to New York City's gay pride march and his Lord of the Rings tattoo.

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Fresh Air Weekend: Amy Schumer And Judd Apatow; Jason Isbell; Ta-Nehisi Coates

Sat, 07/18/2015 - 8:03am

Amy Schumer and Judd Apatow discuss working together on Trainwreck. Ken Tucker reviews Jason Isbell's new album. Ta-Nehisi Coates's new book, Between the World and Me, is an open letter to his son.

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In 'Trainwreck', A Screwball Comedy Fades To Family-Values Formulaic

Fri, 07/17/2015 - 2:13pm

Amy Schumer plays a writer who dodges lovers' pleas for commitment in Trainwreck, directed by Judd Apatow. Critic David Edelstein says the film loses its "delightful momentum" when it gets serious.

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'The Great Fish Swap': How America Is Downgrading Its Seafood Supply

Fri, 07/17/2015 - 2:13pm

One-third of the seafood Americans catch is sold abroad, but most of the seafood we eat is imported and often of lower quality. Author Paul Greenberg explains why. Originally broadcast July 1, 2014.

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Amy Schumer And Judd Apatow Talk Storytelling, Commitment And Spooning

Thu, 07/16/2015 - 3:26pm

In 2011, Apatow heard Schumer on the radio and was struck by her candor. The two went on to collaborate on the film, Trainwreck, about a woman who doesn't want a relationship.

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'Cartel' Author Spins A Grand Tale Of Mexico's Drug Wars

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 2:14pm

Novelist Don Winslow spent 10 years researching the Mexican drug wars. His new novel, The Cartel, reveals "a new generation of cartel leaders that are more violent, more sadistic" than ever before.

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Tracing The Origin Of The Campaign Promise To 'Tell It Like It Is'

Wed, 07/15/2015 - 12:45pm

It's a common pledge of candor for a roster of presidential hopeful. As linguist Geoff Nunberg explains, the promise to "tell it like it is" has its roots in black speech from the '40s and '50s.

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Jason Isbell's 'Something More Than Free' Rings With The Promise of Joy

Tue, 07/14/2015 - 2:14pm

The former member of the Drive-by Truckers unleashes his storytelling skills in his new album, Something More Than Free. Rock critic Ken Tucker says Isbell's lyrics reward a close listen.

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When Weed Is The Cure: A Doctor's Case for Medical Marijuana

Tue, 07/14/2015 - 1:59pm

Dr. David Casarett used to think of medical marijuana as "a joke." But after taking a deeper look, he's changed his mind. Casarett's new book is Stoned: A Doctor's Case for Medical Marijuana.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates On Police Brutality, The Confederate Flag And Forgiveness

Mon, 07/13/2015 - 12:59pm

Growing up in Baltimore, writer Ta-Nehisi Coates faced threats from both the streets and the police. His book, Between the World and Me, is an open letter to his teenage son.

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