Fresh Air

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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.

To celebrate Christmas, we listen back to a concert given by the late singer and actress in 1997. Clooney spoke with Terry Gross about her childhood, being on the road as a young performer with her sister, and working with Bing Crosby.

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Singer-songwriter JD McPherson never thought he'd make a Christmas album. Then, he says, "I got a bug in my ear." He and his band perform live in studio from 'Socks,' and McPherson talks about growing up on a cattle farm in Oklahoma. And critic Ken Tucker reviews Tyler Childers' album, …
2019 In TV & Film Dec. 23, 2019
TV critic David Bianculli and film critic Justin Chang sit down with Terry Gross to share their top 10 lists and talk about larger themes. And John Powers shares his "Ghost List," the books, TV, music and movies he didn't get to review in 2019.
Charlize Theron's new film, 'Bombshell,' follows the women of Fox News who accused then-CEO Roger Ailes of sexual harassment. She talks about playing former Fox anchor Megyn Kelly and growing up in apartheid-era South Africa. Rock critic Ken Tucker shares his favorite albums of 2019 — which all happen to …
Jack Goldsmith's memoir 'In Hoffa's Shadow' centers on his investigation into his stepfather's involvement in the 1975 disappearance of mob-connected labor leader Jimmy Hoffa. Hoffa is portrayed by Al Pacino in Martin Scorsese's new Netflix film 'The Irishman.' (Originally broadcast Oct. 2019) Also, film critic Justin Chang reviews Greta Gerwig's …
Sandler plays a jewelry store owner who's deep in debt in a new thriller by writer/directors Josh and Benny Safdie. The movie was inspired by the brothers' father, who worked in the NYC diamond district.
After a 3-year legal battle, 'The Washington Post' obtained a trove of government documents, unpublished notes and interviews that reveals U.S. officials misled the public about the course of the war. 'Post' reporter Craig Whitlock says candid comments by American military and diplomatic personnel depict muddled strategic thinking and jaw-dropping …
Andrews talks about her career and family life with Terry Gross. "It was what it was: Chaotic, loving, crazy, wonderful, terrible," she says. She's joined by her eldest daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton, who reflects on what it was like growing up with Mary Poppins as your mom: "It was sometimes …
Charlize Theron Dec. 16, 2019
Theron has direct experience with what she calls the "psychological damage" of sexual harassment. Her new film, 'Bombshell,' follows the women of Fox News who accused then-CEO Roger Ailes of inappropriate behavior. Theron talks about transforming her face to play anchor Megyn Kelly, confronting the man who harassed her earlier …
"Your average thrift store in the United States only sells about one third of the stuff that ends up on its shelves," Adam Minter says. "The rest of the stuff ends up somewhere else." His book, 'Secondhand,' follows the things that don't sell — from cheap and soiled clothes to …
Comic Wanda Sykes Dec. 13, 2019
Before Sykes became a comic, she worked at the NSA and had top security clearance. Now she takes on the president in her Emmy-nominated Netflix special 'Not Normal.' (Originally broadcast Aug. 2019.) Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews Bernardine Evaristo's nuanced and entertaining Booker Prize-winning novel 'Girl, Woman, Other.'
'New York Times' investigative reporter Sarah Kliff talks about the costs and challenges of switching to a universal healthcare system — and what it might mean to eliminate private insurance entirely. "There's this whole infrastructure of healthcare that other countries didn't have to confront when they built their universal systems …
Conan O'Brien Dec. 11, 2019
O'Brien recently switched up the format of his late-night show, and has launched the second season of his podcast, 'Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend.' He says the name of his podcast is a joke — sort of. "Sometimes when you're in the public eye, it can get murky as to …
Trump & His Generals Dec. 10, 2019
CNN analyst Peter Bergen reflects on Trump's soured relationships with Generals Mattis, McMaster and Kelly. "He's gotten rid of the most competent people he had in his circle," Bergen says. "Trump is now running his cabinet like he ran his real estate company. ... It's a bunch of yes men …
Borstein's won back-to-back Emmys for playing a tough, street-wise talent manager on the Amazon series, 'The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.' She says the character reminds her of her mother and grandmother. She talks about her roles on 'Mad TV,' 'Getting On,' and being the comic relief in her family. Also, critic …
Edward Norton wrote, directed and stars in the film noir 'Motherless Brooklyn,' about a private investigator with Tourette's syndrome who discovers corruption in the world of New York City planning. He talks about the movie and his own personal connection to the world of urban planning. Also, book critic Maureen …
This weekend Tilson Thomas will receive the Kennedy Center Lifetime Artistic Achievement award. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1995 and 2012 about his work and growing up in the theater. Also we remember Mary Previte, who worked for 30 years with teenagers in detention in Camden, NJ where the …
After six months in office, Ukraine's president Volodymyr Zelensky is "quite cynical" and feels "there are no reliable allies," journalist Simon Shuster says. Shuster recently interviewed Zelensky for 'Time.' Also, John Powers reviews the French film, 'Portrait of a Lady on Fire.'
"Your average thrift store in the United States only sells about one third of the stuff that ends up on its shelves," Adam Minter says. "The rest of the stuff ends up somewhere else." His book, 'Secondhand,' follows the things that don't sell — from cheap and soiled clothes to …
When BJ Miller was a college sophomore he was out late with some friends and climbed onto a parked commuter train. In a freak accident, he was electrocuted and eventually lost both legs below the knee and half of one arm. The experience led him to pursue a career in …