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Fresh Air

Fresh Air from WHYY, the Peabody Award-winning weekday magazine of contemporary arts and issues, is one of public radio's most popular programs. Hosted by Terry Gross, the show features intimate conversations with today's biggest luminaries.
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Now displaying: January, 2016
Jan 30, 2016

The lead singer and a guitarist of Alabama Shakes was raised on her father's junkyard in the woods of Athens, Alabama. She reflects on small town life and big-time music. The band's second album 'Sound & Color' is nominated for six Grammys. Then, commentator Sarah Hepola tells us how online dating taught her something she's struggled to do all her life: Tell men the truth. Also, the mind has the ability to directly affect our health, from pain and depression to heart disease. Science writer Jo Marchant describes how things like mindfulness, virtual reality and the placebo effect are being harnessed in medical treatments.

Jan 29, 2016

Filmmaker Mike Nichols directed 'The Graduate' and 'The Birdcage' and the Broadway musical 'Spamalot, and he's the subject of the new PBS American Masters documentary. Nichols spoke to Fresh Air in 2001.  Carol Burnett was among the first women to host a TV variety show. This weekend, she'll receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Screen Actors Guild Awards. Burnett spoke to Terry Gross in 2003.  Film critic David Edelstein reviews indie film 'Naz & Maalik.'

Jan 28, 2016

The lead singer and a guitarist of Alabama Shakes was raised on her father's junkyard in the woods of Athens, Alabama. She reflects on small town life and big-time music. The band's second album 'Sound & Color' is nominated for six Grammys.

Jan 27, 2016

New York Times political reporter Trip Gabriel has spent the past year in Iowa, covering the political operations, speeches and rallies leading up to the first vote of the presidential campaign. Also, rock historian Ed Ward traces the brief, tumultuous existence of Ork Records.

Jan 26, 2016

The mind has the ability to directly affect our health, from pain and depression to heart disease. Science writer Jo Marchant describes how things like mindfulness, virtual reality and the placebo effect are being harnessed in medical treatments. Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews 'The Portable Veblen.'

Jan 25, 2016

Journalist Matt Katz discusses Christie's rise to power in New Jersey, the "Bridgegate" scandal and his performance in the '16 Republican presidential primary. Katz is the author of 'American Governor.' Ken Tucker reviews the debut album 'Leave Me Alone' by Hinds.

Jan 23, 2016

Wonder Woman's creator, William Moulton Marston, had a secret life: He had a wife and a mistress and fathered children with both of them. Jill Lepore explains in 'The Secret History of Wonder Woman.' Also, Neil Patrick Harris discusses 'Hedwig,' coming out, and being a child actor. 

Jan 22, 2016

Nobel Prize-winning writer Toni Morrison discusses her novel, 'God Help the Child.' At 84, she looks back on her life and says she regrets everything. "It's not profound regret," she says. "It's just a wiping up of tiny little messes that you didn't recognize as mess when they were going on." [Originally broadcast April 2015] TV critic David Bianculli reviews the 'X-Files' reboot on Fox.

Jan 21, 2016

New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells tells us about some of his more infamous reviews, including his zero star review of Guy Fieri's Times Square 'Kitchen & Bar.' Also, chef Danny Bowien talks about opening 'Mission Chinese,' and the hurdles he overcame along the way. John Powers considers the 5-part BBC America series 'London Spy.'

Jan 20, 2016

Kevin Bales discusses the lives of enslaved people and the environmental impact of human bondage. Slavery often exists in places where "the local environment [has] just been destroyed," Bales says. His book is 'Blood and Earth.' Ken Tucker reviews Benji Hughes' album 'Songs in the Key of Animals.'

Jan 20, 2016

Jane Mayer investigates the Koch family and how 'Dark Money' enters and influences our political system. Book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews 'The Past' by Tessa Hadley.

Jan 18, 2016

Regina Mason's great, great, great grandfather, a man named William Grimes, was as runaway slave and the author of what is now considered the first fugitive slave narrative. Mason talks about finding out her family's secret history. Kevin Whitehead reviews two unusual cross-cultural recordings from musicologist Joachim-Ernst Berendt.

Jan 16, 2016

Ray Liotta has a reputation for playing tough guys — but he says he's never actually been in a fight. The 'Goodfellas' actor talks about the ups and downs of his career, and how he's now starring as a corrupt cop in the NBC series 'Shades of Blue.' Also, John Powers reviews the Showtime series 'Billions.'  Then, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Elizabeth Strout discusses her latest novel, 'My Name is Lucy Barton.'

Jan 15, 2016

Sheldon Harnick and the late Jerry Bock wrote the songs for the Broadway show 'Fiddler on the Roof.' They spoke to Terry Gross about putting themselves into the "soul of the characters."  John Powers reviews the Showtime series 'Billions.'

Jan 14, 2016

Years before he became the leader of the Third Reich, Adolph Hitler went on trial and served prison time for an attempted coup. Author Peter Ross Range says 1924 paved the way for his rise to power. Also, film critic David Edelstein reviews '13 Hours.'

Jan 13, 2016

Elizabeth Strout, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of 'Olive Kitteridge,' says she was a "bad lawyer" before turning her energies to writing. Her latest novel, 'My Name is Lucy Barton,' is about an aspiring writer. Then, commentator Sarah Hepola tells us how online dating taught her something she's struggled to do all her life: Tell men the truth. Finally, The singular, gender-neutral usage of "they" is now acceptable on college campuses, among the genderqueer and in the 'Washington Post.' Linguist Geoff Nunberg traces the rise of the new "they."

Jan 12, 2016

Ray Liotta has a reputation for playing tough guys -- but he says he's never been in a fight in his whole life. The 'Goodfellas' actor talks about the ups and downs of his career, and how he's now starring in the NBC series 'Shades of Blue' as a corrupt cop opposite Jennifer Lopez. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews Scott and Jeff Hamilton's 'Live in Bern.'

Jan 11, 2016

We remember David Bowie, who died Sunday, with his 2002 interview. He talks about creating -- and leaving behind -- the Ziggy Stardust persona, gender-bending in the early '70s, and why he's not "a very keen performer." Maureen Corrigan reviews 'The Last Interview' series. Linguist Geoff Nunberg picks 'gig' as his word of 2015, and we listen back to an excerpt of late soul singer Otis Clay's 1999 interview.

Jan 9, 2016

Screenwriter Phyllis Nagy and director Todd Haynes discuss their new film, 'Carol,' about two women who find themselves in an unlikely love affair. The movie, which is set in the 1950s, is based on the novel 'The Price of Salt' by Patricia Highsmith. Also, Ken Tucker reviews Ellie Goulding's new album, 'Delirium.' Then, former paramedic Kevin Hazzard shares stories of rescuing people from choking, overdoses, cardiac arrest, gunshot wounds and a host of other medical emergencies. His memoir is, 'A Thousand Naked Strangers.'

Jan 8, 2016

Singer-songwriter Carole King just received a Kennedy Center Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award. During the ceremony, Aretha Franklin brought down the house with her rendition of '(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.' In celebration of these women, we listen back to their 2012 and 1999 interviews.

Jan 7, 2016

Robin Wright, who writes about Saudi Arabia and Iran in the current issue of 'The New Yorker,' says the latest conflict between the countries comes at an especially sensitive moment. Also, film critic David Edelstein reviews 'Anomalisa.' 

Jan 6, 2016

Screenwriter Phyllis Nagy and director Todd Haynes discuss their new film, 'Carol.' Based on the novel 'The Price of Salt,' by Patricia Highsmith, Nagy describes the story as "extremely forward thinking." Also, we remember late French composer and musical provocateur Pierre Boulez in an excerpt of his 2005 interview.

Jan 5, 2016

Former paramedic Kevin Hazzard has rescued people from choking, overdoses, cardiac arrest, gunshot wounds and a host of other medical emergencies. His memoir is, 'A Thousand Naked Strangers.' Also, we remember late cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond in an excerpt of his 1990 interview.

Jan 4, 2016

Founded in 1991 as a temporary shelter for Somalis, the Dadaab complex in northern Kenya now houses nearly half a million refugees. Ben Rawlence profiles nine of its residents in his new book, 'City of Thorns.' Also, Ken Tucker reviews Ellie Goulding's new album, ' Delirium.'

Jan 2, 2016

Book critic Maureen Corrigan, TV critic David Bianculli, film critic David Edelstein, and rock critic Ken Tucker share their favorites of 2015.

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