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: 17 min 28 sec ago

Fresh Air Weekend: Billy Bragg On Skiffle; 'Crime And Punishment In Black America'

Sat, 07/22/2017 - 8:00am

Bragg describes skiffle, the music movement that brought guitar to British radio. James Forman Jr. explains how black Leaders unwittingly contributed to the era of mass incarceration.

(Image credit: Andy Whale/Courtesy of Faber & Faber)

'Dunkirk' Is A Harrowing War Movie, Muddled By A Convoluted Timeline

Fri, 07/21/2017 - 1:12pm

A new film dramatizes the '40 Allied retreat from the beaches of France as the Nazis close in. Despite strong action sequences, Dunkirk relies too much on fragmented storytelling and obvious plotting.

'Awkward' And 'Insecure' Get To The Root Of Writer Issa Rae's Humor

Fri, 07/21/2017 - 1:12pm

As a self-described "awkward black girl," Rae says she often felt that she was straddling two worlds growing up. She created and stars in the HBO series Insecure. Originally broadcast Nov. 8, 2016.

Fresh Air Remembers Oscar Award-Winning Actor Martin Landau

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 12:58pm

Landau, who died Saturday, appeared in the films Crimes and Misdemeanors and Ed Wood, as well as in the 1960s TV series Mission Impossible. Originally broadcast in 1990.

The Insecurity Of America's Old And Underfunded Voting Systems

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 12:58pm

Cybersecurity reporter Kim Zetter warns that our election systems, including our voting machines, are vulnerable to hacking: "We can't rule out that elections haven't already been manipulated."

2 Smart New Novels Find Humor In Fantasies Of Escape

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 12:58pm

These terrific comic novels — The Last Laugh by Lynn Freed and Who Is Rich? by Matthew Klam — will have you laughing at the many ways we all try to run away from the realities of life.

(Image credit: Penguin)

Billy Bragg On Skiffle, The Movement That Brought Guitar To British Radio

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 2:13pm

The singer describes skiffle as "a bunch of British school boys in the mid '50s playing Lead Belly's repertoire ... on acoustic guitars." Bragg's new book is Roots, Radicals And Rockers.

(Image credit: Andy Whale/Courtesy of Faber & Faber)

'Film' And 'Notfilm' Showcase The Collaboration Of Buster Keaton And Samuel Beckett

Tue, 07/18/2017 - 1:27pm

Beckett wrote the screenplay for only one film, a 1965 silent short starring Keaton. Film has recently been re-released, along with a documentary called Notfilm. Critic Lloyd Schwartz has a review.

Inside The 'Shakespearean Irony' Of Trump And Bannon's Relationship

Tue, 07/18/2017 - 1:27pm

Author Joshua Green says that although Steve Bannon was instrumental to Donald Trump's election, it now appears that the president lacks the ability to implement Bannon's nationalist vision.

(Image credit: Penguin )

Remembering George Romero, A Filmmaker Who Brought The Dead To Life

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 1:56pm

Romero was known for graphic horror films like Night of the Living Dead, which showed corpses rising up to feast on the living. He spoke to Fresh Air in 1988.

(Image credit: Chris Carlson/Associated Press)

How Black Leaders Unwittingly Contributed To The Era Of Mass Incarceration

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 1:20pm

James Forman Jr., son of civil rights activists, says that African-American leaders seeking to combat drugs and crime often supported policies that disproportionately targeted the black community.

Jet-Setting Vacationers Find Trouble In Paradise In 'Beautiful Animals'

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 1:20pm

Two entitled young women vacationing on a chic Greek island get involved with a mysterious stranger in Lawrence Osborne's new novel. Critic John Powers calls it a "seductively menacing new thriller."

(Image credit: Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images)

Fresh Air Weekend: The Love Story Behind 'The Big Sick'; Life After Ballet

Sat, 07/15/2017 - 8:00am

Comic Kumail Nanjiani remembers the first time he thought of marrying then-girlfriend Emily V. Gordon: when he saw her in a coma. Ballerina Wendy Whelan fought to retire on her own terms.

(Image credit: Angela Weiss/Getty Images)

'Lady Macbeth' Is An Icy British Psychodrama About Power And Abuse

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 1:13pm

Director William Oldroyd's new film is set in late 19th-century England, where a young woman, forced to marry an abrasive older man, engages in an affair with a ruffian servant.

'Ode To Billie Joe' Was A Surprise Hit That Prompted Dozens Of Jazz Versions

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 1:13pm

Fifty years ago, singer-songwriter Bobbie Gentry released a song that described a slice of life in rural Mississippi. Critic Kevin Whitehead shares a few of the jazz covers that followed.

'Schumer' Writer Jessi Klein On Barbies, Ageism And Pumping At The Emmys

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 1:13pm

Klein won an Emmy in 2015 for her work on Inside Amy Schumer. Her book, You'll Grow Out of It, is a collection of humorous personal essays. Originally broadcast July 12, 2016.

Documentary Reveals The 'Dirty Tricks' Of One Of Trump's Closest Political Advisers

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 1:15pm

Morgan Pehme co-directed the new Netflix documentary, Get Me Roger Stone, about the political operative who spent three decades trying to convince Donald Trump to run for president.

'War For The Planet Of The Apes' Offers A Masterful Vision Of Humanity's Many Forms

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 1:15pm

There's nothing pretentious or inflated about the latest Planet of the Apes film. Rather, it's a suspense-driven movie in which it's "impossible not to root for these brave and beautiful apes."

American Popular Song Series: Jerome Kern

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 11:50am

This Christmas week we rebroadcast our series on American popular song. This one profiles composer Jerome Kern.

How A Medically Induced Coma Led To Love, Marriage And 'The Big Sick'

Wed, 07/12/2017 - 1:40pm

Comic Kumail Nanjiani remembers the first time he thought of marrying then-girlfriend Emily V. Gordon: when he saw her in a coma. Now the couple has co-written a romantic comedy based on their story.

(Image credit: Angela Weiss/Getty Images)

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