Info

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.
RSS Feed
Fresh Air
2018
February
January


2017
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2016
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


2015
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
February
January


All Episodes
Archives
Now displaying: December, 2017
Dec 30, 2017

Nashville singer-songwriter Margo Price pawned her wedding ring — and her husband sold their car — to pay for the recording studio to make her 2016 debut album, 'Midwest Farmer's Daughter.' Now she's released her second album, 'All American Made,' an overtly political and feminist record that grapples with the current political climate. Book critic Maureen Corrigan shares her list of the best books of 2017. Also, therapist Esther Perel has spent the past six years focusing on couples who are dealing with infidelity. "It's never been easier to cheat — and it's never been more difficult to keep a secret," she says. Her new book is 'The State of Affairs.'

Dec 29, 2017

Our Best of 2017 series continues with ’Daily Show' correspondent Hasan Minhaj. He describes himself as a "third-culture kid" who doesn't fully belong in either the world of his parents or that of his hometown of Davis, Calif. Also we’ll hear from ‘Late Night’ host Seth Meyers. He spent spent 13 years at 'Saturday Night Live,' first as a performer, then as head writer and the co-host of 'Weekend Update.' He talks about political satire in the Trump era and being a comedian without demons. 

Dec 28, 2017

Our Best of 2017 series continues with best-selling novelist John Le Carré. The 85-year-old writer is familiar with the moral tension inherent to working in the espionage community: "I felt I had to suppress my humanity," Le Carre says of his time as a spy. His latest book is 'A Legacy of Spies.' Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews an album from Marta Sánchez’s quintet.

Dec 27, 2017

As 2017 comes to a close, we're listening back to some of our favorite interviews from this year. After the sudden death of his wife in April 2016, comic Patton Oswalt felt his life slipping away. He talks about grief, returning to comedy, and falling in love again. His new Netflix special is 'Patton Oswalt: Annihilation.'

Dec 26, 2017
As 2017 comes to a close, we're listening back to some of our favorite interviews from this year. Lin-Manuel Miranda is the man behind the Broadway sensation 'Hamilton,' a hip-hop musical about the founding fathers. Miranda discusses his Tony and Pulitzer prize-winning project, as well as his role in the Disney animated film 'Moana.' This interview originally aired on Jan. 3, 2017. Also, David Edelstein shares his picks for the 10 best films of 2017.
Dec 22, 2017

Smith, who died Saturday, was discovered by bandleader Louis Prima as a teenager. She later married Prima, and the two became a popular Las Vegas lounge act. She spoke with Terry Gross in 2000. Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a new album from trombonist Roswell Rudd, and film critic David Edelstein reviews Paul Thomas Anderson’s new film ‘Phantom Thread,’ starring Daniel Day-Lewis. 

Dec 21, 2017

The longtime host of ‘All Things Considered’ will retire in January. Siegel joined NPR in 1976 when, as he says, the network had only been on the air for five years and, “we really could make it up as we went along." Also, TV critic David Bianculli shares his picks for best shows of 2017.

Dec 20, 2017

Filmmaker Jonathan Olshefski spent nearly 10 years filming Christopher Rainey and his family, who run a recording studio in a working-class African-American neighborhood of North Philadelphia. During the course of the film we see the Raineys get married, raise their daughter, and try to recover from a traumatic turn of events when she is hit by a stray bullet. Olshefski and Christopher “Quest” Rainey join us. Also, film critic Justin Chang reviews ‘The Post.’

Dec 19, 2017

In her new book 'Moral Combat,' academic R. Marie Griffith writes about how battles around sex, gender and sexual orientation became part of American politics, including issues of women's suffrage and marriage equality. Also, writer Dagoberto Gilb tells a story about his much-anticipated trip to Mexico, in which he found himself stuck indoors during an earthquake strike. And critic Kevin Whitehead remembers some of the jazz musicians who died this year.

Dec 18, 2017

Chef-turned-advocate Barton Seaver works to get people excited about fish. He says there are a lot of species that are not endangered that we should be eating. Film critic Justin Chang picks his top 12 movies of 2017. Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Jennifer Egan talks about her work of historical fiction, ‘Manhattan Beach,’ which imagines the lives of women who worked on the Brooklyn Navy Yard during World War II. Rock critic Ken Tucker looks back on the year in music.

Dec 16, 2017

Spike Lee's 1986 debut feature film, 'She's Gotta Have It,' centered on a young black artist who loves sex, but isn't interested in a committed relationship. Now he returns to the character in an expanded, 10-part Netflix series. Also, writer and director Scott Frank says his Netflix series 'Godless' was inspired by historical records from 19th century Southwestern towns in which women took over after the men died in an accident. He talks about wanting to make a Western and embracing the genre's clichés.

Dec 15, 2017

The new Spielberg film ‘The Post’ stars Meryl Streep as Graham and Tom Hanks as Bradlee as they defy a federal judge by publishing the Pentagon Papers. Graham and Bradlee each spoke with Terry Gross, in 1997 and 1995, respectively, about how they decided whether or not to publish the top-secret documents. Also, film critic David Edelstein reviews 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi.' 

Dec 14, 2017

Lee's 1986 debut feature film, ‘She’s Gotta Have It,’ centered on a young black artist who loves sex, but isn't interested in a committed relationship. Now he returns to the character in an expanded, 10-part Netflix series.

Dec 13, 2017

Esther Perel has spent the past six years focusing on couples who are dealing with infidelity. "It's never been easier to cheat -- and it's never been more difficult to keep a secret," she says. Her new book is ‘The State of Affairs.’ Also, we remember Smithereens’ lead singer Pat DiNizio. And critic at-large John Powers shares his list of things he wishes he reviewed in 2017.

Dec 12, 2017

Three members of the band Ranky Tanky perform songs from their self-titled debut album. Their name and music derives from the Gullah tradition, slave descendants from the Georgia and South Carolina coast. Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan picks her best books for a chaotic 2017. 

Dec 11, 2017

Writer and director Scott Frank says his Netflix series ‘Godless’ was inspired by historical records from 19th century Southwestern towns in which women took over after the men died in an accident. He talks about wanting to make a Western and embracing the genre’s clichés. 

Dec 9, 2017

James Franco’s new film, 'The Disaster Artist,’ is about the making of the 2003 cult classic ‘The Room,’ which has been called the 'Citizen Kane' of bad movies. Franco talks about what drew him to ‘The Room,’ and its star, Tommy Wiseau. And linguist Geoff Nunberg shares his word of 2017. Also, director Guillermo del Toro discusses 'The Shape of Water,’ which is set in 1962 and features a fairy tale romance between an amphibious water creature and a mute woman.

Dec 8, 2017

In 1912, white mobs set fire to black churches and black-owned businesses. Eventually the entire black population of Forsyth County was driven out. Patrick Phillips, author of ’Blood at the Root,’ tells the story. Film critic David Edelstein reviews ‘I, Tonya.’

Dec 7, 2017

Robert Mueller is conducting a "full and thorough investigation of the Russian government's efforts to interfere in the 2016 election," and any possible links between the Russian government and the Trump campaign. Any such links could be called collusion, but is collusion a crime? ‘New Yorker’ staff writer and CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin discusses the Mueller investigation and the approach President Donald Trump’s legal team is taking. Film critic Justin Chang reviews ‘Foxtrot.’

Dec 6, 2017

Franco's new film, ‘The Disaster Artist,’ is a behind-the-scenes take on the making of the 2003 cult classic ‘The Room,’ which has been called the ‘Citizen Kane’ of bad movies. Franco also talks about his roles in HBO’s ‘The Deuce,’ and the controversy surrounding his 2014 film ‘The Interview.’ Also, linguist Geoff Nunberg shares his word of the year.

Dec 5, 2017

‘Vanity Fair’ editor-at-large Cullen Murphy grew up the son of a cartoonist. His father, John Cullen Murphy, drew the popular Prince Valiant strip, which Murphy eventually wrote for 14 years. His new memoir is ‘Cartoon County.’  Also, director Guillermo del Toro says his new film ’The Shape of Water’ centers on “love beyond words.” Set in 1962, his new film features a fairy tale romance between an amphibious water creature and a mute woman.

Dec 4, 2017

Daniel Ellsberg became one of the best-known opponents of the Vietnam War in 1971, when he leaked the Pentagon Papers, a secret Defense Department study of the war, to the ‘New York Times.’ He has a new memoir ‘The Doomsday Machine,’ about his years as a young national security analyst looking at top secret plans for nuclear war. Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews a biography of Ezra Pound, ‘The Bughouse,’ and John Powers reviews the new Amazon series ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.’

Dec 2, 2017

After the sudden death of his wife in April 2016, comic Patton Oswalt felt his life slipping away. But over the past year, things took a turn: He fell in love again. His new Netflix special is 'Patton Oswalt: Annihilation.’ Justin Chang reviews 'The Shape of Water.' Anthony Atamanuik and Peter Grosz's new Comedy Central series, 'The President Show,' is set up like a late night talk show, hosted by President Trump with Vice President Pence as his sidekick. 

Dec 1, 2017

For World AIDS Day we’re listening back to our 2016 interview with activist Cleve Jones. He lost countless friends to the AIDS epidemic and became an activist after Harvey Milk’s assassination. “Meeting Harvey, seeing his death, it fixed my course.” Jones is co-founded the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and started the AIDS memorial quilt. Film critic Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews a reissue of ‘The Astaire Story.’ Film critic David Edelstein reviews James Franco’s ‘The Disaster Artist.’

1