991 episodes

Fresh Air

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‘Washington Post’ reporter Craig Timberg explains how military-grade spyware licensed to governments and police departments has infiltrated the iPhones of journalists, activists and others. “It takes a story like this to help people understand how deeply enmeshed these tiny little computers have gotten into our lives,” Timberg says. “I still carry my iPhone everywhere I go … And the reality of that is that every time I do that, I’m exposing not just myself, but everyone I deal with to the possibility of spying by governments all over the world.”

Also, Justin Chang reviews ‘The Green Knight’ starring Dev Patel.

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Jul 28, 2021

‘Moonlight’ Writer Tarell Alvin McCraney

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After winning an Oscar for co-writing the film ‘Moonlight,’ McCraney says he received a lot of opportunities, many of which he turned down. “Some of it had to do with waiting for the other shoe to drop,” he says. He’s now the creator of the TV series ‘David Makes Man,’ which is in its second season on OWN. The series begins with a Miami boy whose mother struggles with addiction — and has echoes of McCraney’s own childhood.

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Dr. Wen is an emergency physician, CNN Health Analyst and former Baltimore Health Commissioner. We talk about mask and vaccine mandates, the return to school and work, and the Delta variant. “Unfortunately, we’re in a situation now where the vaccinated are having to pay the price for the actions of the unvaccinated,” she says. Wen emigrated from China as a child and relied on the public health system while she had severe asthma. She has a new memoir called ‘Lifelines.’

Also, Maureen Corrigan reviews the novel ‘Wayward’ by Dana Spiotta.

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Jul 26, 2021

Jad Abumrad

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Abumrad is the creator of the hit public radio series RadioLab. The show started off as a series about science-related mysteries, but now it investigates all kinds of stories. The new RadioLab miniseries, ‘The Vanishing of Harry Pace,’ is about the man who co-founded a publication with WEB DuBois, co-wrote St. Louis Blues with WC Handy, founded the first Black-owned record company, helped desegregate a Chicago neighborhood — and then kind of disappeared. Abumrad also co-reported the podcast miniseries ‘Dolly Parton’s America,’ which uses her life and music to examine larger issues like America’s cultural divide.

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Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson talks about directing the new film ‘Summer of Soul,’ documenting the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival. It features performances by Nina Simone, Stevie Wonder, Mahalia Jackson and more, and reflects on the cultural and political changes of the time. We’ll also talk about big changes in Questlove’s life.

Jazz critic Kevin Whitehead remembers electric guitarists George Barnes and Mary Osborne, who were born 100 years ago.

Writer Akash Kapur reflects on growing up in a Utopian community founded in India 1968. While living in the U.S., he connected with a woman who also grew up in that community. They married and returned there, to better understand the social tumult of their childhood, and to learn more about the mysterious circumstances surrounding her parents’ deaths. His book is ‘Better to Have Gone.’

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Jul 23, 2021

Hugh Grant On ‘The Undoing’

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Hugh Grant has been nominated for an Emmy for his role in the HBO miniseries ‘The Undoing,’ in which he played an adulterous doctor suspected of murder. Grant got his start in romcoms, but lately he’s been getting darker roles. “It’s alarming how many pretty unpleasant narcissists I’ve played or been offered in the last six or seven years. But It’s certainly been a blessed relief after having to be Mr. Nice Guy for so many years,” he says.

Ken Tucker reviews two new albums from Australia and David Bianculli reviews the second season of ‘Ted Lasso’ on Apple TV+.

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Jul 22, 2021

How GOP State Legislatures Are Remaking The U.S.

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Journalist Ron Brownstein says Republican-controlled state legislatures are taking a sharp right turn, in a conscious backlash against unified Democratic control of Congress. These states are not only passing voting rights restrictions, they’re passing a torrent of other conservative bills that reflect the cultural and racial priorities of Trump’s base. Brownstein is a senior editor at ‘The Atlantic’ and a senior political analyst at CNN. His latest book is called ‘Rock Me on the Water: 1974 – The Year Los Angeles Transformed Movies, Music, Television and Politics.’

Justin Chang reviews the South Korean film ‘The Woman Who Ran.’

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Jul 21, 2021

Questlove On ‘Summer of Soul’

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Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson is coming out of the pandemic a changed man. The co-founder of the Roots and the music director for ‘The Tonight Show’ did something he never thought he’d do — he bought a farm in upstate New York. “I thought chaos was the only way that I could exist. But now I embrace quiet and I can hear myself think.” Now he’s venturing into a new arena: He’s made his directorial debut with the documentary ‘Summer of Soul,’ which tells the story of the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival, known as the “Black Woodstock.”

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4.6
Total: 5
KH
Kellie Harper
Dec 26, 2019

Nice job! It was really cool story!

DT
Doron Tamari
Dec 19, 2019

LW
Leah Weiss
Dec 16, 2019

AR
Alan Ragus
Dec 12, 2019

MG
Michael Goland
Dec 09, 2019

The guest are awesome and diverse. Even if you haven't listened in a while, you can always go back through their catalog of episodes and find a good interview.

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.