Fresh Air

Weekdays at noon and midnight

Fresh Air with Terry Gross, the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues, is one of public radio's most popular programs. Each week, nearly 4.5 million people listen to the show's intimate conversations broadcast on more than 450 National Public Radio (NPR) stations across the country, as well as in Europe on the World Radio Network.

Visit the Fresh Air website for more information.

Though Fresh Air has been categorized as a "talk show," it hardly fits the mold. Its 1994 Peabody Award citation credits Fresh Air with "probing questions, revelatory interviews and unusual insights." And a variety of top publications count Gross among the country's leading interviewers. The show gives interviews as much time as needed, and complements them with comments from well-known critics and commentators.

Fresh Air is produced at WHYY-FM in Philadelphia and broadcast nationally by NPR.

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1:34pm

Fri August 2, 2013
Interviews

Matthew McConaughey, Getting Serious Again

Originally published on Mon August 5, 2013 2:30 pm

Matthew McConaughey stars as a man on the run from authorities in Jeff Nichols' Mud.
Jim Bridges Roadside Attractions Publicity

This interview was originally broadcast on April 23, 2013.

Matthew McConaughey earned early attention as a sensitive actor with his turn in the 1996 legal drama A Time to Kill -- but since then he has mostly made a career with leading-man roles in romantic comedies like How to Lose a Guy In 10 Days, Failure to Launch and The Wedding Planner.

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1:34pm

Fri August 2, 2013
Movie Reviews

A Good Girl And A Lost Boy, Looking For A Way Forward

Shailene Woodley, who played George Clooney's rebellious daughter in The Descendants, turns in a splendidly calibrated performance as a soft-spoken good girl who falls hard for a high school party animal (Miles Teller) in The Spectacular Now.
Wilford Harewood

The teen romance The Spectacular Now is by turns goofy, exhilarating, and unreasonably sad — just like being a teenager.

It centers on a fast-talking, hard-drinking high school party animal named Sutter Keely, who boasts of living for today and in the now — instead of, say, studying — and how he takes up with a girl named Aimee, who's the opposite of a party animal.

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1:26pm

Thu August 1, 2013
Food

'America's Test Kitchen' On Grilling Peaches, Tofu And Burgers

Jack Bishop of America's Test Kitchen says the trick to grilling peaches is using fruit that's ripe but firm.
mccun934 via Flickr

When Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop talk about preparing food on the public TV series America's Test Kitchen, they're really good at explaining why the recipe works. Bishop is the editorial director of the show, and Lancaster is the lead instructor of its cooking school. They've both contributed to the new America's Test Kitchen DIY Cookbook. They join Fresh Air's Terry Gross to talk about preparing summer foods, and to answer some cooking questions from the Fresh Air staff.

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1:28pm

Wed July 31, 2013
Politics

As Summer Recess Looms, Congress Remains Inactive

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 2:20 pm

Jonathan Weisman writes that the last week before the long summer recess is usually crunchtime for Congress, but it's "a sleepy time for the underachieving 113th."
Brendan Smialowski Getty Images

Friday is the last day before the 113th Congress scatters for their summer recess. And what has it accomplished so far? Almost nothing, says New York Times congressional correspondent Jonathan Weisman. As he points out in a recent article:

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3:26pm

Tue July 30, 2013
Author Interviews

Pioneering 'Masters Of Sex' Brought Science To The Bedroom

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 4:40 pm

Human sexuality researchers William Masters and Virginia Johnson Masters, shown in San Francisco in 1972.
AP

William Masters and Virginia Johnson became famous in the 1960s for their groundbreaking and controversial research into the physiology of human sexuality. Instead of just asking people about their sex lives, Masters and Johnson actually observed volunteers engaging in self-stimulation and sexual intercourse. Changes throughout their bodies during arousal were measured with medical equipment.

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1:06pm

Tue July 30, 2013
Book Reviews

With 'Arrangements' And 'The Rest,' Two Debut Novelists Arrive

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 3:41 pm

The novel I've been recommending this summer to anyone, female or male, who's looking for the trifecta — a good story that's beautifully written and both hilarious and humane — is Seating Arrangements, Maggie Shipstead's debut novel from last summer. I was about to go all old-school and excitedly add that Seating Arrangements is now out in paperback, except since more and more readers are instantly downloading new books at a discount, paperbacks are becoming increasingly irrelevant.

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12:48pm

Tue July 30, 2013
Music Reviews

'The Edenfred Files': Darryl Harper's Blues-Infused Jazz

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 3:41 pm

Clarinetist Darryl Harper discovered jazz as a teenager in Philadelphia.
Courtesy of the artist

In jazz, the clarinet went into eclipse for awhile, drowned out by louder trumpets and saxes. The instrument has long since made a comeback, and the modern clarinet thrives in settings where it doesn't have to shout to be heard.

Take "Spindleshanks," a little out-of-sync boogie-woogie for Darryl Harper's clarinet and Kevin Harris' piano. It's from Harper's The Edenfred Files. In his long-running Onus Trio, the spare unit Darryl Harper features on most of his new album, he can sing softly as an owl in the night.

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2:27pm

Mon July 29, 2013
Remembrances

Fresh Air Remembers Former Louisiana Congresswoman Lindy Boggs

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 5:51 pm

Former Democratic representative from Louisiana Lindy Claiborne Boggs attends the Distinguished Service Award ceremony at the Capitol on May 10, 2006.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Lindy Boggs, the former congresswoman from Louisiana, died Saturday at the age of 97. Boggs came to Washington in 1941, the year her husband, Hale Boggs, began his first term as a Democratic congressman from Louisiana. She was 24 years old.

In 1972, on a campaign trip through Alaska, Hale Boggs' plane disappeared, never to be found. Lindy Boggs ran for her late husband's seat and won, becoming the first woman elected to Congress from her state. She remained in Congress through 1990. In 1997, President Clinton appointed her ambassador to the Vatican.

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2:02pm

Mon July 29, 2013
Television

John Gallagher Jr. On 'Newsroom' Dialogue And Staging Green Day

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 2:28 pm

In Season 2 of The Newsroom, Jim Harper (John Gallagher Jr.) goes on the 2012 campaign trail.
Melissa Moseley HBO

In HBO's The Newsroom, John Gallagher Jr. plays Jim Harper, the senior producer of the nightly cable news program anchored by Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels). The show's second season, which began in July, takes place in 2012 during the presidential primaries. Ever since the start of the series, Gallagher's character has been in a will-they-or-won't-they relationship with one of the young producers of the news show.

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1:20pm

Mon July 29, 2013
Television

This Summer, Vintage TV Shows Thrive On DVD

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 2:27 pm

The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis is the first in a straight line of teen comedies from the teen point of view. It starred Dwayne Hickman (right) as Dobie and Bob Denver as his best friend, Maynard.
Courtesy of Shout! Factory

So much TV, so little time. Even during the summer — when broadcast TV slows down and leaves mostly cable and satellite TV series, and now Netflix, to watch and review — the TV shows on DVD keep coming. And summertime is the perfect time to dive into some of them.

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9:03am

Sat July 27, 2013
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: Maria Bamford, 'Lunches With Orson' And '& Sons'

Originally published on Sat July 27, 2013 11:11 am

Maria Bamford is a stand-up comedian and voice actress. She recently appeared in the fourth season of Arrested Development.

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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11:59am

Fri July 26, 2013
Interviews

Michael Apted, Aging With The '7 Up' Crew

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 1:40 pm

Jackie, Lynn and Sue — pictured here at age 7 — are three of the children featured in the landmark 1964 documentary 7 Up. The series returns this year with 56 Up, checking in with a group of 14 men and women whose lives have been documented since they were kids.
First Run Features

This interview was originally broadcast on Feb. 5, 2013.

Every seven years since 1964, in what's known as the Up series, Granada Television has caught us up on the lives of 14 everyday people. The subjects of the documentary series were 7 years old when it began; in the latest installment, 56 Up, they are well into middle age.

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11:57am

Fri July 26, 2013
Interviews

Tig Notaro On Going 'Live' About Her Life

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 1:40 pm

Comedian Tig Notaro dealt with a cancer diagnosis the best way she knew how — with humor.
tignation.com

This interview was originally broadcast on Oct. 8, 2012.

"Good evening, hello. I have cancer. How are you?"

That's how comedian Tig Notaro began her set at Largo in Los Angeles the day she was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. As she uttered those words to the audience, there was nervous laughter, weeping and total silence in response.

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11:57am

Fri July 26, 2013
Movie Reviews

'Blue' Rhapsodies: Woody Allen, In Need Of New Tricks

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 1:40 pm

Ginger's (Sally Hawkins) best moments happen while in the company of a persistent suitor named Al (Louis C.K.).
Merrick Morton Sony Classics

Another year, another Woody Allen picture, and few agree on whether that's a good thing. For some, he hasn't made an interesting film since Husbands and Wives, maybe even Hannah and Her Sisters. Others think more recent morality plays like Match Point and comic parables like Midnight in Paris prove the old dog still hunts.

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1:45pm

Thu July 25, 2013
Author Interviews

A Metro 'Revolution': Cities, Suburbs Do What Washington Can't

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 3:47 pm

Philanthropic and business leaders have come together to revive the core of Detroit, which recently filed for federal bankruptcy protection.
Bill Pugliano Getty Images

When Detroit filed for federal bankruptcy protection last week, news accounts were filled with troubling stories of urban decay in the city: vast areas of vacant lots and abandoned houses, shuttered parks, nonworking streetlights and police response times close to an hour.

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1:37pm

Thu July 25, 2013
Health Care

For Bioethicist With Ailing Spouse, End-Of-Life Issues Hit Home

Originally published on Thu July 25, 2013 4:14 pm

Margaret Battin's husband, Brooke Hopkins, was left quadriplegic after he collided with an oncoming bicycle while cycling down a hill in Salt Lake City.
Courtesy of The New York Times

After writing books and essays about end-of-life issues, and advocating for the right to die, bioethicist Margaret Battin is wrestling with the issue in her own family. Her husband, Brooke Hopkins, an English professor at the University of Utah, where she also teaches, broke his neck in a bicycle accident in 2008, leaving him with quadriplegia and dependent on life support technology. In order to breathe, he requires a ventilator some of the time and a diaphragmatic pacer all the time. He receives his nutrition through a feeding tube.

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2:53pm

Wed July 24, 2013
Book Reviews

'My Lunches With Orson' Puts You At The Table With Welles

Central Press Getty Images

If you asked me to name my favorite movie scene, I'd choose the one in Citizen Kane when newspaper owner Charles Foster Kane steals his rivals' best reporters, then throws a party in his own honor. As musicians literally sing his praises, we watch Kane dance with chorus girls wearing a look of radiant delight. It's a moment bursting with promise and cockiness and joie de vivre, made all the more exuberant because Kane's pleasure is so obviously shared by Welles himself.

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1:01pm

Wed July 24, 2013
Author Interviews

After WWII, Europe Was A 'Savage Continent' Of Devastation

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 5:59 pm

In his latest book, Savage Continent, Keith Lowe takes a look at Europe in the years directly following World War II.
Picador

In the introduction to his book, Savage Continent, Keith Lowe writes:

Imagine a world without institutions. No governments. No school or universities. No access to any information. No banks. Money no longer has any worth. There are no shops, because no one has anything to sell. Law and order are virtually non-existent because there is no police force and no judiciary. Men with weapons roam the streets taking what they want. Women of all classes and ages prostitute themselves for food and protection.

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2:18pm

Tue July 23, 2013
Author Interviews

A Reclusive Novelist Reckons With His Legacy '& Sons'

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 2:56 pm

New York City's Central Park
AnnaNem iStockphoto.com

At the center of David Gilbert's new novel & Sons is a famous and famously reclusive writer in the J.D. Salinger model. It's a book about the writer as author of books, and as the father of sons — sons who don't feel nearly as warmly toward him as readers do. When & Sons begins, the writer, Andrew Newbold Dyer — or A.N. Dyer as he's known to his readers — is nearing 80.

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12:43pm

Tue July 23, 2013
Remembrances

Carline Ray: A Pioneer For Women In Jazz Dies At 88

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 2:56 pm

Carline Ray, who sang with The International Sweethearts of Rhythm and Mary Lou Williams died on July 18 at the age of 88.
Jazz Promo Services

Pioneering musician Carline Ray died July 18 at age 88. In the 1940s, when it was difficult for women to be accepted as jazz musicians, Ray found a home in the all-female band The International Sweethearts of Rhythm as the guitarist and a featured vocalist. She was also a bass player who performed with Sy Oliver, Mercer Ellington and Mary Lou Williams.

Ray was born in Harlem in 1925 during the Harlem Renaissance. She graduated from Juilliard and the Manhattan School of Music. Her husband, Luis Russell, led his own band and worked as Louis Armstrong's music director.

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2:14pm

Mon July 22, 2013
Middle East

Morsi's Ouster In Egypt: A 'Bookend' For The Arab Spring

Originally published on Mon July 22, 2013 2:17 pm

In Cairo on July 17, supporters of the ousted president demonstrate for his reinstatement.
Gianluigi Guercia AFP/Getty Images

After covering the Egyptian revolution that overthrew President Hosni Mubarak in 2011, David Kirkpatrick has now been reporting on the military's ouster of Egypt's first democratically elected president, Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Kirkpatrick, The New York Times' Cairo bureau chief, arrived in Egypt in January 2011, and days later flew to Tunisia to cover the revolution that launched the Arab Spring.

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9:03am

Sat July 20, 2013
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: Jason Isbell, 'Cuckoo's Calling,' 'Orange Is The New Black'

Originally published on Sat July 20, 2013 12:58 pm

Jason Isbell was previously a member of Drive-By Truckers. His solo albums include Sirens of the Ditch and Here We Rest.
Eric England Courtesy of the artist

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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12:38pm

Fri July 19, 2013
Arts & Life

Two Documentaries Examine Violence, Human And Animal

Originally published on Fri July 19, 2013 1:49 pm

The new documentary Blackfish looks at the practice of keeping orca whales in captivity.
EPK

Two documentaries, Blackfish and The Act of Killing, are making waves around the world. The first riles you up; the second blows your mind.

"Blackfish" is the Inuits' name for the orca, a creature that they say is worthy of veneration but that you don't want to mess with — the chief example in Gabriela Cowperthwaite's Blackfish being Tilikum, responsible for two, possibly three human deaths.

The movie is Tilikum's story — along with the story of other orcas kept in captivity in theme parks like SeaWorld.

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10:49am

Fri July 19, 2013
Interviews

Dean Norris On Playing Good In 'Breaking Bad'

Originally published on Fri July 19, 2013 12:38 pm

Dean Norris plays DEA agent Hank Schrader in AMC's Breaking Bad. "He's a good cop, he just hasn't put the pieces together yet," Norris says.
Ben Leuner AMC

This interview was originally broadcast on Aug. 6, 2012.

With each season of AMC's Breaking Bad, Dean Norris' character, DEA agent Hank Schrader, has evolved from a knuckleheaded jock into a complex, sympathetic and even heroic counterpoint to the show's anti-hero, high-school chemistry teacher turned meth cook Walter White. And to further complicate matters, Schrader and White (played by Bryan Cranston) are brothers-in-law.

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1:40pm

Thu July 18, 2013
Book Reviews

The Only Surprise In Rowling's 'Cuckoo's Calling' Is The Author

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 3:41 pm

J.K. Rowling recently revealed herself to be the author of the mystery novel The Cuckoo's Calling.
Ben Pruchnie Getty Images

Call it "The Mystery of the Missing Book Sales" — and I don't think we'll be needing to bring Sherlock Holmes in to solve this one. In April, a debut mystery called The Cuckoo's Calling was published. It appeared to be written by an unknown British writer named Robert Galbraith, who was identified on the book jacket as a former military cop now working in private security.

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1:40pm

Thu July 18, 2013
Pop Culture

Maria Bamford: A Seriously Funny Comedian

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 3:05 pm

It's almost uncomfortable to laugh at Maria Bamford's comedy, because so much of it is about really serious problems she has: OCD, bipolar disorder, suicidal thoughts. She's been hospitalized several times. But you have to laugh, because she's that funny.

In addition to the difficulties from which she suffers, Bamford — who has a new comedy CD out called Ask Me About My New God! — incorporates her family into much of her material. She's close to both her parents, in part, she says, because they've been through so much together.

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2:25pm

Wed July 17, 2013
Music Interviews

Jason Isbell Locates His Musical Compass On 'Southeastern'

Originally published on Wed October 30, 2013 10:38 am

Jason Isbell was previously a member of Drive-By Truckers. His solo albums include Sirens of the Ditch and Here We Rest.
Eric England Courtesy of the artist

When singer-songwriter Jason Isbell used to get drunk, he'd sometimes tell his then-girlfriend, the musician Amanda Shires, that he needed to quit the bottle — and that if it was going to take, he'd have to go to rehab. Eventually, she said the next time he told her that, she'd hold him to it. And she did. And he went. And, he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross, "The jury is still out on whether or not it worked, but it worked today and all the days leading up to this."

Initially, he says he was scared about what sobriety would do to his personality and his creativity.

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4:29pm

Tue July 16, 2013
Television

Laughs And Drama Behind Bars With 'Orange Is The New Black'

Taylor Schilling and Lin Tucci in the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black.
Jessica Miglio Netflix

Netflix's original series Orange Is the New Black has two important TV predecessors. One is HBO's Oz, the 1997 men-in-prison drama from Tom Fontana that paved the way for HBO's The Sopranos. The other is Showtime's Weeds, which in the fourth season put one of its central characters behind bars.

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4:29pm

Tue July 16, 2013
Around the Nation

Investigation Reveals A Military Payroll Rife With Glitches

Scot Paltrow is a special enterprise correspondent for Reuters.
Reuters

A new investigative report from Reuters says payroll errors in the military are widespread. And that "once mistakes are detected, getting them corrected — or just explained — can test even the most persistent soldiers."

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1:51pm

Tue July 16, 2013
Music Reviews

Sylvester: 'Mighty Real' Disco Star Deserves A Modern Spotlight

Originally published on Tue July 16, 2013 4:29 pm

Sylvester's 1978 album Step II resulted in a couple of smash singles, "Dance (Disco Heat)" and "You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)."
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