Fresh Air

Weekdays at Noon

Fresh Air opens the window on contemporary arts and issues with guests from worlds as diverse as literature and economics. Terry Gross hosts this multi-award-winning daily interview and features program. The veteran public radio interviewer is known for her extraordinary ability to engage guests of all dispositions. Every weekday she delights intelligent and curious listeners with revelations on contemporary societal concerns.

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Television
12:02 pm
Wed May 6, 2015

Meet The Power Couple Behind 'The Good Wife'

Julianna Marguiles plays attorney Alicia Florrick in the CBS drama The Good Wife.
CBS

Originally published on Thu May 7, 2015 7:31 am

The CBS drama series The Good Wife explores the behind-closed-doors drama of a smart female lawyer who stands by, silently supportive, as her husband admits to scandals both political and extramarital. Robert and Michelle King, the real-life husband and wife team who created the show, say that when it came to creating the series' main character, it was a question of art imitating life.

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Music Reviews
12:02 pm
Wed May 6, 2015

Cuban Drummer Dafnis Prieto's Crisp Rhythms Are 'Good For Jazz'

Originally published on Thu May 7, 2015 7:31 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

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Television
10:49 am
Wed May 6, 2015

The Allure Of Gore: 'Walking Dead' Producer On Zombies And Mean Tweets

Andrew Lincoln plays Rick Grimes in The Walking Dead.
Frank Ockenfels 3 AMC

Originally published on Thu May 7, 2015 7:31 am

The AMC series The Walking Dead, about a band of survivors in a zombie apocalypse, is known for killing off characters without much warning. But while the show's sudden plot twists keep viewers engaged, they can also create explosions of fan grief and rage on social media. Much of the audience's ire has landed on Scott M. Gimple, the series' executive producer and this season's showrunner.

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Book Reviews
11:20 am
Tue May 5, 2015

'One Of Us' Examines The Damaged Inner Terrain Of Norwegian Mass Shooter

Emily Jan NPR

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 6:08 am

Columbine; Port Arthur, Australia; The Sikh Temple of Wisconsin; Newtown — the list goes on and on. And, by now, the elements of this type of massacre have become ritualized: usually one, but sometimes more than one, deeply disaffected person, almost always male, who is heavily armed with guns and/or explosives, targets the innocent. In the aftermath, which sometimes includes a trial, the crucial question of "Why?" is never really answered. Instead, most of us are left to wonder how any human being, however twisted, could be capable of such horror.

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The Salt
11:20 am
Tue May 5, 2015

'Tales' Of Pig Intelligence, Factory Farming And Humane Bacon

Author Barry Estabrook says pigs can be taught to play computer games and recognize themselves in a mirror.
W. W. Norton & Company

Originally published on Tue May 5, 2015 3:59 pm

Journalist Barry Estabrook knows how to enjoy a juicy heritage pork chop. He'll also be the first to tell you what intelligent, sensitive creatures pigs are. "I had no idea how smart they were until I got in the research," Estabrook tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies.

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Television
11:25 am
Mon May 4, 2015

Last Days Of Dave: Paying Homage To Letterman's Weird And Quirky Legacy

Originally published on Tue May 5, 2015 8:20 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Sports
11:25 am
Mon May 4, 2015

Silence On The Sidelines: An MLB Insider's 'Manifesto' On Youth Sports

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Fresh Air Weekend
9:22 am
Sat May 2, 2015

Fresh Air Weekend: Louis C.K, A Memoirist's 'Struggle', Pokey LaFarge

Louis C.K. remembers getting "really big laughs" during his third try at stand-up. "I was so excited that I had a little foot in the door," C.K. says. He's pictured above in his FX series Louie.
KC Bailey FX

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

Louis C.K. On Life And Stand-Up: 'I Live In Service For My Kids': The star of the FX series Louie talks about the pain of his first-ever open mic experience and the "massive gift" of taking care of others before himself.

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Movie Reviews
1:42 pm
Fri May 1, 2015

Hollywood Offers Up A Bevy Of Superheroes In 'Avengers: Age of Ultron'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Music Reviews
1:41 pm
Fri May 1, 2015

Nellie McKay Celebrates The '60s With 'My Weekly Reader'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Interviews
1:12 pm
Fri May 1, 2015

Timothy Spall Takes On Painter J.M.W. Turner, A 'Master Of The Sublime'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Music
12:37 pm
Thu April 30, 2015

Two Takes On Billie Holiday

In honor of Billie Holiday's 100th birthday this month, several artists are releasing out Holiday tribute albums. Fresh Air jazz critic Kevin Whitehead looks at a couple of these by other singers. One he rather likes; the other, not so much.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Environment
12:37 pm
Thu April 30, 2015

Drought In Calif. Creates Water Wars Between Farmers, Developers, Residents

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross.

(SOUNDBITE OF NEWS MONTAGE)

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #1: California going back to the drawing board to deal with their drought.

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Author Interviews
1:40 pm
Wed April 29, 2015

Ohio Kidnapping Survivors Recount Captivity, Escape From Horror

House of horrors: The exterior of the Cleveland house where Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michelle Knight were held captive.
Bill Pugliano Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 2:44 pm

On the day before her 17th birthday, in 2003, Amanda Berry disappeared as she made her way home from her job at a Burger King in Cleveland. A year later, another Cleveland teen, 14-year-old Gina DeJesus, vanished while returning from middle school. Searches for both girls came up empty, and as the years passed it seemed less and less likely that either girl would ever be seen again.

In fact, the girls were still in Cleveland. They had been abducted by a man named Ariel Castro, who had kidnapped another young woman, Michelle Knight, in 2002.

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Music
1:40 pm
Wed April 29, 2015

Brooklyn Rider Blurs Classical Boundaries On 'Almanac'

Originally published on Thu April 30, 2015 1:15 pm

Some 30 years ago, the Kronos Quartet created a sensation by releasing an album of chamber music that included an arrangement of Jimi Hendrix's "Purple Haze." Now Brooklyn Rider, another gifted string quartet, is again blurring the boundaries between classical and more popular kinds of chamber music. Fresh Air classical music critic Lloyd Schwartz says he admires that blur.

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Book Reviews
12:38 pm
Wed April 29, 2015

3,600-Page Autobiographical Novel Is An Honest And Masterful 'Selfie'

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 1:59 pm

It seems like there's always some writer you're supposed to be reading. These days, it's Karl Ove Knausgaard, the 46-year-old Norwegian whose six-volume, 3,600-page autobiographical novel, My Struggle, has become a literary sensation. Over the past couple of years, I haven't been able to go to a social gathering without someone asking what I thought of his work. When I've said that I hadn't read a word, they would look genuinely startled and tell me, "You have to."

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Television
1:21 pm
Tue April 28, 2015

Louis C.K. On Life And Stand-Up: 'I Live In Service For My Kids'

Louis C.K. remembers getting "really big laughs" during his third try at stand-up. "I was so excited that I had a little foot in the door," C.K. says. He's pictured above in his FX series Louie.
KC Bailey FX

Originally published on Wed April 29, 2015 5:01 pm

After years working the stand-up circuit, Louis C.K. is well established as a comic powerhouse; his FX series Louie is in its fifth season, and C.K. also has a new comedy special that's available as a digital download on his website. But the laughs didn't always come easily. C.K. was a teenager when he first ventured onstage at a local comedy club's open mic night.

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Commentary
11:31 am
Mon April 27, 2015

From TED Talks To Taco Bell, Abuzz With Silicon Valley-Style 'Disruption'

Martin Starr plays software designer Gilfoyle in the HBO comedy Silicon Valley. In the show's new season, Gilfoyle and his fellow techies attend a startup competition named "Disrupt."
Frank Masi HBO

Originally published on Mon April 27, 2015 3:22 pm

HBO's Silicon Valley is back, with its pitch-perfect renderings of the culture and language of the tech world — like at the opening of the "Disrupt" startup competition run by the Tech Crunch website at the end of last season. "We're making the world a better place through scalable fault-tolerant distributed databases" — the show's writers didn't have to exercise their imagination much to come up with those little arias of geeky self-puffery, or with the name Disrupt, which, as it happens, is what the Tech Crunch conferences are actually called.

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Music Interviews
11:31 am
Mon April 27, 2015

Pokey LaFarge Mines His Midwestern Roots, Finds 'Something In The Water'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Music
11:31 am
Mon April 27, 2015

Alabama Shakes Opens New Territory On 'Sound & Color'

Over the course of Sound & Color, Alabama Shakes messes with what had already, after its first album, become its signature sound. Fresh Air rock critic Ken Tucker has this review.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Fresh Air Weekend
7:03 am
Sat April 25, 2015

Fresh Air Weekend: Toni Morrison, Ross Macdonald's Crime Fiction, Will Forte

Toni Morrison's novels include Beloved, The Bluest Eye and Song of Solomon. She won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1993.
Timothy Greenfield Sanders

Originally published on Sat April 25, 2015 9:14 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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Author Interviews
11:58 am
Fri April 24, 2015

'Pope And Mussolini' Tells The 'Secret History' Of Fascism And The Church

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 7:49 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Movie Reviews
11:58 am
Fri April 24, 2015

Deception And Suspense By The Sea In The Iranian Mystery 'About Elly'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Middle East
1:14 pm
Thu April 23, 2015

Saudi Bombing In Yemen Has Led To New Gains For Al-Qaida

Reporter Gregory Johnsen talks with Fresh Air's Dave Davies about the humanitarian crisis in Yemen and how the chaos is impacting the U.S. fight against al-Qaida. Johnsen describes a country torn apart. "I don't even think it's accurate to speak of Yemen as one country anymore," he says. "I think the country has been definitively and decisively broken in the way that no one will ever be able to put it back together again."

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Music
1:14 pm
Thu April 23, 2015

Dwight Yoakam's 'Second Hand Heart' Is First Class

Dwight Yoakam has been making music that mixes country with rock 'n' roll since the 1970s. Working out of Los Angeles rather than Nashville, he's built a career that has also included a solid acting career, appearing in movies like 1996's Sling Blade and the recent TV series Under the Dome. Yoakam's new album is called Second Hand Heart, and Fresh Air rock critic Ken Tucker says it's one of Yoakam's most stylistically diverse.

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Deceptive Cadence
1:49 pm
Wed April 22, 2015

How The Met Opera's Chorus Master Gets 150 To Sound Like One

Donald Palumbo became the Met's chorus master in the 2007-2008 season. He sang in choruses all his life, he says, and eventually worked his way up without any formal conservatory training.
Marty Sohl Courtesy of the Met

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 9:05 am

Metropolitan Opera Chorus Master Donald Palumbo knows voices, and how to instruct singers to protect them.

Palumbo says that all singers have to monitor their voices while rehearsing during the day. The goal, he says, is to insure singers are at their "freshest" and "most solid" for the evening performance.

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Television
1:46 pm
Wed April 22, 2015

'Last Man' Will Forte On Beards, Comedy And Bruce Dern's Acting Advice

A man and his beard: Will Forte plays a man seeking companionship in a world wasted by disease in The Last Man on Earth.
Jordin Althaus Fox

Originally published on Thu April 23, 2015 7:25 am

In Fox's television show The Last Man on Earth, Saturday Night Live alum Will Forte plays a man who survives a deadly virus that has decimated the human population. In the show, Forte's character, Phil, despairs when he thinks he is the last human on earth. He drives around a lonely landscape, creating billboards that announce "Alive in Tucson" on the off-chance that someone will see them.

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Book Reviews
1:25 pm
Tue April 21, 2015

Revisiting A Suburbia-Gone-Sour In Ross Macdonald's Crime Fiction

Originally published on Tue April 21, 2015 2:54 pm

Ross Macdonald had a smart answer to the tedious question of why he devoted his considerable talents to writing "mere" detective stories: Macdonald said that the detective story was "a kind of welder's mask enabling writers to handle dangerously hot material." Like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler (the great hard-boiled masters whom he revered), Macdonald set out to excavate the dark depths of American life, but to find his own "dangerously hot material" Macdonald descended into uncharted territory.

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Author Interviews
1:25 pm
Tue April 21, 2015

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

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 4:46 am

In his 20 years as a New York City police officer, Steve Osborne made thousands of arrests. He says that when he was in uniform, it wasn't unusual to handle 20 jobs a night. And in plainclothes, in the anti-crime unit, his teams would make several felony collars a week, mostly robberies, assaults and gun arrests.

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Author Interviews
1:06 pm
Mon April 20, 2015

'I Regret Everything': Toni Morrison Looks Back On Her Personal Life

Originally published on Wed April 22, 2015 10:15 am

Now that she's in her mid-80s, celebrated author Toni Morrison feels aches, pains and regret.

She tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross, "When I'm not creating or focusing on something I can imagine or invent, I think I go back over my life — I don't recommend this, by the way — and you pick up, 'Oh, what did you do that for? Why didn't you understand this?' Not just with children, as a parent, but with other people, with friends. ... It's not profound regret; it's just a wiping up of tiny little messes that you didn't recognize as mess when they were going on."

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