Fresh Air

Monday - Friday, 2 pm to 3 pm

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.

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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In the mid-'70s, during a turbulent three-year period, Ronald Reagan emerged as a national figure and nearly captured the Republican nomination from a sitting president.

Rick Perlstein, who has spent much of his career writing about modern American conservatism, describes this time in political history in his new book, The Invisible Bridge.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Spoon Wants Your Soul

Aug 4, 2014

Spoon has just released its first new album since 2010's Transference. Fresh Air critic says that "They Want My Soul is another fine Spoon album in a career that has now come to display a remarkable consistency."

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

Playing a woman discovering sexuality in the '50s makes actor Allison Janney think of — of all people — her mother. Janney's mother and father got married in their early 20s, and she doesn't believe her mother had sex with anyone else.

"I remember my mother talking to me about the birds and the bees," she tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "Of course, I had already known [about them], probably years before she came to me. But remembering the way she talked to me about it — it's just everything about her reminds me of Margaret Scully."

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:

Even though James Brown died in 2006 at age 73, he continues to be influential — a new biopic about him called Get On Up, premieres in theaters Friday.

In the '80s and '90s, Fresh Air recorded interviews with Brown's biographer and two musicians who played in his band. And in 2005, James Brown chatted with Terry Gross after the publication of his autobiography I Feel Good.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID BIANCULLI, BYLINE: This is FRESH AIR. The newest film adaptation of a Marvel comic is "Guardians of the Galaxy," which features five Motley warriors against an armada of space villains. Film critic David Edelstein has this review.

Maggie Gyllenhaal stars in a new eight-part miniseries that couldn't be more timely: It's about a woman who finds herself embroiled in the Israeli Palestinian conflict.

A recent report by journalist Rukmini Callimachi details al-Qaida's strategy of kidnapping Europeans and demanding large ransoms — and how those ransoms are a key source of funding for al-Qaida operations.

"Europe is funneling these enormous sums of money to al-Qaida," Callimachi, a foreign correspondent with The New York Times, tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "They're reluctantly and unwillingly becoming al-Qaida's main patron."

From his vintage hat to his enormous 1920s banjo, Dom Flemons looks like he's time-traveled from a different era.

Can Pinterest Compete With Google's Search?

Jul 30, 2014

The Pinterest interface is simple: Just click a button, and any Web page gets broken down into its constituent images. Any of those can be added to your own set of images, known on Pinterest as a board. Other people can find those boards and copy what they like — or simply search through all the photos on the site.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Most sports novels are about the aspiration to excel physically: to run faster, stretch out one's arms farther. The really cool thing about Ride Around Shining, a debut novel by Chris Leslie-Hynan, is that it doesn't stick to that familiar rule book. Even though it's set in the world of pro basketball, our narrator here is not the guy who aspires to be a great player; rather, he's the guy who aspires to be a great suck-up to the great player.

Many fans know George Takei from his role as Mr. Sulu on the 1960s show Star Trek. But in the past decade, he has drawn followers who admire him because of who he is — not just who he has played. Now, the new documentary To Be Takei may interest more people in Takei's life.

Takei's personal story offers insights into a couple of key chapters of American political and cultural history.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

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:

'Trans Bodies, Trans Selves': A Modern Manual By And For Trans People: Modeled after the groundbreaking feminist health manual Our Bodies, Ourselves, the book details the social, political and medical issues faced by transgender people.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

DAVID BIANCULLI, HOST:

"Make it work," the fashion guru tells designers on Project Runway. But life hasn't always "worked" for Gunn. He talks with Terry Gross about being bullied, being gay in the '60s and '70s, and how his mother thinks he should "dress more like Mitt Romney."

Originally broadcast on Feb. 5, 2014.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

There's a wonderful 1982 memoir called An Orphan in History by the late Village Voice writer Paul Cowan. It's about Cowan's search for his European Jewish roots, and in it he says something about the sacrifices of older generations of immigrants that's always stayed with me. Cowan says: "Millions of immigrant families . . . left the economically and culturally confining Old World towns where they were raised, and paid for the freedom and prosperity this country offered with their pasts."

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