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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 14 min ago

Fresh Air Weekend: John Prine; Novelist Stephen McCauley

Sat, 06/23/2018 - 9:00am

Prine explains why he never thought he'd be a recording artist. Critic Justin Chang reviews the documentary The King. McCauley's novel, My Ex-Life, centers on couple whose marriage ended decades ago.

Categories: Syndicated

'The King' Fuses Elvis' Turbulent Life Story With The Soul Of America

Fri, 06/22/2018 - 1:23pm

Eugene Jarecki's documentary uses the rise and fall of Elvis Presley to track the ups and downs of America's past century. Critic Justin Chang calls The King a "feverishly analytical" musical essay.

Categories: Syndicated

In The Event Of Attack, Here's How The Government Plans 'To Save Itself'

Fri, 06/22/2018 - 1:23pm

In Raven Rock, Garrett Graff describes the bunkers designed to protect government leaders and the roles for various agencies in the event of catastrophe. Originally broadcast June 21, 2018.

Categories: Syndicated

'Born Trump' Examines The 'Emotional Hold' The President Has On His Family

Thu, 06/21/2018 - 3:44pm

Journalist Emily Jane Fox focused on Trump's three marriages and five children when writing her new book. "His presence is overwhelming," she says of the president's role in the family.

(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Categories: Syndicated

2 Books Find Fuel In The American Landscape

Thu, 06/21/2018 - 3:14pm

Critic Maureen Corrigan recommends two books to expand your horizons: One is a cultural history of the great American road trip; the other an early 20th-century classic of Midwestern rural life.

(Image credit: CSA Images/Snapstock/Getty Images/CSA Images RF)

Categories: Syndicated

2 First-Rate Novels Celebrate The Humor And Heroism Of Unconventional Women

Wed, 06/20/2018 - 1:54pm

Authors Dorthe Nors and Sayaka Murata use bracing good humor to subvert readers' expectations about single women in their new novels, Mirror, Shoulder, Signal and Convenience Store Woman.

Categories: Syndicated

Novelist Stephen McCauley Embraces Life On A 'Small, Everyday Scale'

Wed, 06/20/2018 - 1:54pm

McCauley's novel, My Ex-Life, is a comedy about a couple whose marriage ended years ago when the husband came out as gay. "All relationships evolve — even for people who stay together," he says.

Categories: Syndicated

Father John Misty Mixes Egotism And Humor On 'God's Favorite Customer'

Tue, 06/19/2018 - 1:39pm

Critic Ken Tucker says Father John Misty's new album offers a "roundabout, melancholy" acknowledgement of the artistic selfishness that often accompanies confessional songwriting.

Categories: Syndicated

Journalist Warns Cyber Attacks Present A 'Perfect Weapon' Against Global Order

Tue, 06/19/2018 - 1:39pm

New York Times national security correspondent David Sanger says U.S. officials worry that foreign powers have planted malware that could knock out critical infrastructure, including electric power.

Categories: Syndicated

John Prine On Music, Cancer And Why He Never Thought He'd Be A Recording Artist

Mon, 06/18/2018 - 1:27pm

The singer, songwriter and guitarist underwent surgeries in 1996 and 2013 that affected his throat and voice. He likes his voice better now: "It dropped down lower and feels friendlier."

Categories: Syndicated

Pithy And Pointed 'There There' Puts Native American Voices Front And Center

Mon, 06/18/2018 - 1:00pm

Critic Maureen Corrigan says Tommy Orange's novel, which centers on a cast of native and mixed-race characters whose lives intersect at a powwow, features "a literary authority rare in a debut."

(Image credit: Samantha Clark/NPR)

Categories: Syndicated

Fresh Air Weekend: Paul Schrader And Ethan Hawke On 'First Reformed'; Michael Chabon

Sat, 06/16/2018 - 9:00am

Shrader and Hawke discuss their new film about a minister who is having a crisis of faith. Justin Chang reviews The Incredibles 2. Chabon writes about fatherhood in Pops.

Categories: Syndicated

Remembering D.J. Fontana, The Drummer For Elvis Presley's Band

Fri, 06/15/2018 - 1:38pm

Fontana, who died Wednesday, played on some of Presley's biggest hits, including "Blue Suede Shoes," "Hound Dog" and "All Shook Up." Originally broadcast in 1987.

Categories: Syndicated

Remembering War Photographer David Douglas Duncan

Fri, 06/15/2018 - 1:38pm

Duncan, who died at 102, was a Marine officer and combat photographer during World War II. Later he photographed the wars in Korea and Vietnam. Originally broadcast in 1990.

Categories: Syndicated

A Filmmaker's 'Quest' For A Quiet Family Portrait Is Pierced By Unforeseen Trauma

Fri, 06/15/2018 - 1:38pm

Jonathan Olshefski spent 10 years filming Christopher Rainey and his family, who run a recording studio in North Philadelphia. Then their daughter was shot. Originally broadcast Dec. 20, 2017.

Categories: Syndicated

'Incredibles 2' Zips Seamlessly Between Domestic Comedy And Death-Defying Action

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 2:37pm

The sequel to the 2004 animated hit continues the superheroic adventures of Mr. Incredible, Elastigirl and their three gifted children. Critic Justin Chang calls the film "gorgeous" and "touching."

Categories: Syndicated

Snail Mail Delivers Sturdy Guitar Riffs And Soaring Vocals On 'Lush'

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 2:37pm

Eighteen-year-old Lindsey Jordan, who records under the name Snail Mail, has been playing guitar for 13 years. This combination of youth and experience creates a distinctive sound on her new album.

Categories: Syndicated

Remembering Jill Ker Conway, The First Female President Of Smith College

Thu, 06/14/2018 - 2:37pm

The women's history scholar, who died June 1, grew up on a remote Australian sheep farm and later went on to write three memoirs, including True North. Conway spoke to Fresh Air in 1989, '94 and '98.

Categories: Syndicated

Pianist Shamie Royston Brings A Hard-Swinging Brand Of Jazz To 'Beautiful Liar'

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 2:07pm

Royston is a trained composer who knows how to manipulate her materials all sorts of ways. Critic Kevin Whitehead says the music on Beautiful Liar is "sleek and sturdy" and "made to be played."

Categories: Syndicated

How Taking A Stand For Justice Can Threaten The Careers Of Black Athletes

Wed, 06/13/2018 - 2:07pm

Journalist Howard Bryant discusses the history of social protest among African-American athletes. His new book, The Heritage, traces the tradition back to Jackie Robinson, Muhammad Ali and others.

Categories: Syndicated