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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 57 min ago

A Look Back At 4 Jazz Luminaries Who Died In 2017

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 1:39pm

Kevin Whitehead remembers alto saxophonist Arthur Blythe, pianist Geri Allen, guitarist John Abercrombie and singer Jon Hendricks. Each "helped shape jazz after the upheavals of the 1960s," he says.

Categories: Syndicated

A Writer Remembers The Quake That Rocked Mexico City, And Brought Its People Together

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 1:39pm

Dagoberto Gilb was fulfilling a dream to be in Mexico City for an extended stay when an earthquake struck on Sept. 19, 2017. Amidst the destruction, he says, there was a feeling of collective resolve.

Categories: Syndicated

How Battles Over Sex, Gender And Sexual Orientation 'Fractured American Politics'

Tue, 12/19/2017 - 1:39pm

Moral Combat author R. Marie Griffith says the fight for women's suffrage and legal birth control in the early 20th century helped create a political divide in the U.S. that still exists today.

Categories: Syndicated

In A Year Of Heartbreak And Reckoning, 12 Films Remind Us Of Hollywood's Greatness

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 2:19pm

Film critic Justin Chang picks his top 12 movies of the year, pairing them thematically, from Call Me By Your Name and The Florida Project, to War For The Planet of the Apes and Dunkirk.

Categories: Syndicated

'American Seafood' Author Recommends Putting 'Underloved' Fish On the Plate

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 2:19pm

Chef and sustainable seafood advocate Barton Seaver works to get people excited about fish. He says there are lots of species that are not endangered that we should be eating, like Hake.

Categories: Syndicated

For Novelist Jennifer Egan, 'The Joy Of Writing Is Being Delivered Out Of My Life'

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 2:19pm

"I don't use my life as inspiration," says the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist. Her new book, Manhattan Beach, imagines the lives of the women who worked on the Brooklyn Navy Yard during World War II.

Categories: Syndicated

Ken Tucker Looks Back On 2017 In Music

Mon, 12/18/2017 - 2:19pm

Fresh Air's music critic presents his annual list of favorite music — along with some thoughts about the rock, pop and country stars who died in 2017.

(Image credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Clara Lionel Foundation)

Categories: Syndicated

Fresh Air Weekend: Director Spike Lee; 'Godless' Creator Scott Frank

Sat, 12/16/2017 - 9:00am

Lee reprises his 1986 film She's Gotta Have It in a new 10-part Netflix series. Though Frank packed his Netflix miniseries with train robberies and shootouts, Godless isn't exactly a typical Western.

(Image credit: David Lee/Netflix/Courtesy of Netflix)

Categories: Syndicated

'Last Jedi' Puts The Smarts — And The Heart — Back Into The 'Star Wars' Franchise

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 1:28pm

The late Carrie Fisher makes her final appearance — now as General Leia — in Star Wars Episode VIII. Critic David Edelstein says The Last Jedi is nothing short of terrific.

Categories: Syndicated

How Katharine Graham Defied A Federal Judge To Publish The Pentagon Papers

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 1:28pm

Graham, who died in 2001, held the title of publisher at The Washington Post from 1969 until 1979. She spoke to Fresh Air in 1997 about her 1971 decision to publish the top-secret documents.

Categories: Syndicated

Former 'Post' Executive Editor Ben Bradlee On Publishing The Pentagon Papers

Fri, 12/15/2017 - 1:28pm

Bradlee served as executive editor of The Washington Post from 1968 to 1991. In 1995, he told Fresh Air about his decision to publish the top secret documents related to U.S. policy making in Vietnam.

Categories: Syndicated

31 Years Later, Spike Lee Puts A New Spin On 'She's Gotta Have It'

Thu, 12/14/2017 - 3:14pm

In a new 10-part Netflix series, Lee revisits his story of a young black artist who loves sex, but isn't interested in a committed relationship.

(Image credit: David Lee/Netflix/Courtesy of Netflix)

Categories: Syndicated

Remembering Smithereens' Songwriter And Lead Singer Pat DiNizio

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 2:23pm

DiNizio, who died Tuesday, told Fresh Air in 1988 that his music was influenced by the songs he grew up listening to on AM radio in the 1960s. The Smithereens formed in Carteret, NJ, in 1980.

Categories: Syndicated

As Marriage Standards Change, A Therapist Recommends 'Rethinking Infidelity'

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 2:23pm

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.

Categories: Syndicated

Critic's 'Ghost List' Has Books, Music And A TV Show That Deserve A Second Look

Wed, 12/13/2017 - 2:23pm

Every year, critic John Powers is haunted by the things he wishes he'd reviewed. The themes his 2017 "Ghost List" range in spirit from cosmic surrealism to ripped-from-the-headlines immediacy.

(Image credit: Joss Barratt/Hulu)

Categories: Syndicated

Ranky Tanky Leans On The Music And Culture Of Slave Descendants

Tue, 12/12/2017 - 12:15pm

Three members of Ranky Tanky perform songs from their self-titled debut. The band's name and music derive from the tradition of the Gullah, slave descendants from the Georgia and South Carolina coast.

Categories: Syndicated

Maureen Corrigan Picks Books To Close Out A Chaotic 2017

Tue, 12/12/2017 - 12:13pm

Fresh Air's book critic says her 2017 list is chaotic in a good way. "These books zing off in all directions: They're fresh, unruly and dismissive of the canned and contrived."

(Image credit: Laura Roman/NPR)

Categories: Syndicated

'Godless' Creator Says He Wanted To Embrace Every Single Western Cliché

Mon, 12/11/2017 - 3:38pm

Scott Frank packed his Netflix mini-series with train robberies and shoot-outs, but Godless isn't exactly a typical Western. For one thing, the town at the center of the story is run by women.

(Image credit: Ursula Coyote/Courtesty of Netflix)

Categories: Syndicated

Fresh Air Weekend: James Franco; 2017's Word Of The Year; Guillermo Del Toro

Sat, 12/09/2017 - 9:00am

Franco tackles a Hollywood story "unlike any other" in The Disaster Artist. Linguist Geoff Nunberg says "tribalism" is his word of the year. Del Toro talks about his new film, The Shape Of Water.

(Image credit: Justina Mintz/Courtesy of A24)

Categories: Syndicated

'I, Tonya' Offers A Sympathetic Second Act To A Disgraced Figure Skater

Fri, 12/08/2017 - 8:13pm

In January 1994, skater Nancy Kerrigan was struck on the leg with a police-style baton by a man linked to skating rival Tonya Harding. A new dark comedy reconsiders the case against Harding.

Categories: Syndicated