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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 26 sec ago

Fresh Air Weekend: Biographer Robert Caro; Actor Christopher Meloni

Sat, 04/20/2019 - 2:39pm

Caro began writing biographies in order to better understand political power. Ken Tucker reviews The Mekons' album, Deserted. After 12 seasons on Law & Order: SVU, Meloni plays a hit man on Happy!

(Image credit: Joyce Ravid /Penguin Randomhouse)

Categories: Syndicated

'Fresh Air' Celebrates Queen Of Soul Aretha Franklin

Fri, 04/19/2019 - 1:29pm

The Pulitzer Prize Board recently awarded Franklin, who died in 2018, with a special citation for her "indelible contribution" to American music and culture. Originally broadcast in 1999.

Categories: Syndicated

'Long Day's Journey Into Night' Astonishes With Technical Achievement

Fri, 04/19/2019 - 1:29pm

Chinese writer-director Bi Gan's new film centers on a former casino owner haunted by the memory of a woman from his past. It features a 59-minute sequence, shot in a single take and converted to 3-D.

Categories: Syndicated

Frederick Douglass' Remarkable Life, From Slavery To 'American Wonder'

Fri, 04/19/2019 - 1:29pm

David Blight's Pulitzer Prize-winning biography details Douglass' passionate leadership in the abolitionist movement and his gift as a writer and orator. Originally broadcast Dec. 17 2018.

Categories: Syndicated

'Lost And Wanted' Grapples With Grief, Regret And The Existence Of God

Thu, 04/18/2019 - 1:57pm

Nell Freudenberger's gorgeous new novel tells the story of a middle-aged woman who receives messages sent from her college friend's cell phone — even after her friend has died.

Categories: Syndicated

From Fastballs To Greaseballs, 'K' Offers A History Of Baseball's Most Iconic Pitches

Thu, 04/18/2019 - 1:27pm

NY Times baseball writer Tyler Kepner spoke to 22 hall-of-fame pitchers about what they throw, and how they get a mental edge over hitters. His new book is K: A History of Baseball in Ten Pitches.

Categories: Syndicated

Tiger Woods Biographer Says Golfer's Masters Comeback 'Transcends Sports'

Wed, 04/17/2019 - 1:27pm

Woods' recent Masters title follows a 10-year drought of major tournament victories. Jeff Benedict, co-author of Tiger Woods, says: "What we're seeing now is someone who loves what he's doing."

Categories: Syndicated

'SVU' Actor Channels 'Completely Different Energy' To Play 'Happy!' Hit Man

Wed, 04/17/2019 - 1:27pm

After 12 seasons on Law & Order: SVU, Christopher Meloni plays a disgraced policeman-turned-hit man (who collaborates with an imaginary unicorn) in the second season of the Syfi Channel series Happy!.

Categories: Syndicated

The Mekons Celebrate Restlessness And Exploration On 'Deserted'

Tue, 04/16/2019 - 1:59pm

The Mekons are first-generation British punk rockers who've moved through an array of genres over the decades. Their most recent album was recorded in a studio just outside Joshua Tree National Park.

Categories: Syndicated

Climate Change Is 'Greatest Challenge Humans Have Ever Faced,' Author Says

Tue, 04/16/2019 - 1:59pm

Bill McKibben, who first warned of climate change 30 years ago, says its effects are now upon us: "The idea that anybody's going to be immune from this anywhere is untrue." His new book is Falter.

Categories: Syndicated

Jazz Trumpeter Tom Harrell Proves To Be A Thinking Person's Soloist On 'Infinity'

Mon, 04/15/2019 - 3:27pm

Group chemistry and deft composing make Harrell's new album a polished, inventive album that's worth checking out. Critic Kevin Whitehead says it's "really, really good."

Categories: Syndicated

Biographer Robert Caro On Fame, Power And 'Working' To Uncover The Truth

Mon, 04/15/2019 - 3:06pm

The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist was never interested in only telling the stories of famous men. Instead, he says, "I wanted to use their lives to show how political power worked."

(Image credit: Joyce Ravid /Penguin Randomhouse)

Categories: Syndicated

Fresh Air Weekend: Henry Winkler; Rob Delaney

Sat, 04/13/2019 - 9:00am

Winkler discusses his decades-long acting career, from "The Fonz" to Barry. Ken Tucker reviews Billie Eilish's debut album. Delaney talks about wrapping up Catastrophe and working through grief.

(Image credit: Isabella Vosmikova/HBO)

Categories: Syndicated

Ray Romano On Fame, And Finding His Bearings After 'Raymond' Wrapped

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 1:26pm

Ray Romano's comedy special, Right Here, Around the Corner, is now streaming on Netflix. He spoke to Fresh Air in 2016 about the story behind the title of his hit sit-com Everybody Loves Raymond.

Categories: Syndicated

Remembering Oscar-Nominated Character Actor Seymour Cassel

Fri, 04/12/2019 - 1:26pm

Cassel, who died April 7, performed as a child during matinees of his mom's burlesque shows and went on to appear in movies directed by John Cassavetes and Wes Anderson. Originally broadcast in 2006.

Categories: Syndicated

'Game Of Thrones' Keeps Its Finger On The Pulse As It Enters The Home Stretch

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 2:00pm

Over the years, the HBO series has risen from being a nifty potboiler to a timely expression of a zeitgeist that contests everything from gender roles to climate change to immigration.

Categories: Syndicated

'I Never Had A Plan B': Henry Winkler On His Career, From The Fonz To 'Barry'

Thu, 04/11/2019 - 1:22pm

The actor talks with Fresh Air's Terry Gross about struggling with typecasting after Happy Days, his family's immigration story and about how he found out in his 30s that he had dyslexia.

(Image credit: Isabella Vosmikova/HBO)

Categories: Syndicated

'Her Smell' Is A Brilliant And Blistering Portrait Of A Musician Falling Apart

Wed, 04/10/2019 - 2:00pm

Critic Justin Chang says he couldn't tear his eyes away from Elisabeth Moss, who gives a spectacular performance as an out-of-control punk musician struggling with substance abuse.

Categories: Syndicated

'Charged' Explains How Prosecutors And Plea Bargains Drive Mass Incarceration

Wed, 04/10/2019 - 1:46pm

Close to 2.2 million people were incarcerated in the U.S. in 2016; author Emily Bazelon says prosecutors, rather than judges, are responsible for many of the prison sentences defendants receive.

(Image credit: Juan Camilo Bernal/Getty Images)

Categories: Syndicated

Reporters Say Members Of Congress Are 'Obsessed' With Getting Re-Elected

Tue, 04/09/2019 - 2:26pm

Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer, who cover Congress for Politico, discuss the power dynamics of Capitol Hill during the Trump Presidency. Their new book is The Hill To Die On.

Categories: Syndicated