Fresh Air on WUTC

Weekdays, Noon - 1pm
Terry Gross

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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12:08pm

Mon November 4, 2013
Music Reviews

Amir ElSaffar Navigates Uncharted Blue Notes On 'Alchemy'

Originally published on Mon November 4, 2013 3:01 pm

Amir ElSaffar's new album is called Alchemy.
Nicole LeCorgne Courtesy of the artist

Trumpeter Amir ElSaffar grew up near Chicago, playing jazz trumpet. In the early 2000s, while in his mid-20s, he began investigating the music of his Iraqi heritage, studying in Baghdad and with expatriate musicians in Europe. Then he began combining the two.

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9:03am

Sat November 2, 2013
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: Chris Hadfield, Brandy Clark, Kennedy Conspiracies

Originally published on Sat November 2, 2013 11:34 am

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield has spent a total of six months in space. In his new book, he writes that getting to space took only "8 minutes and 42 seconds. Give or take a few thousand days of training."
NASA Courtesy of Little, Brown and Company

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:

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11:34am

Fri November 1, 2013
Remembrances

The Story Behind The Stunts: Remembering Hollywood's Hal Needham

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 3:54 pm

Hollywood stuntman Hal Needham — one of the most famous practitioners of his dangerous craft — died of cancer on Oct. 25 at age 82. We'll listen back to a conversation with Needham from Feb. 7, 2011, when he had just published a memoir, called Stuntman!: My Car-Crashing, Plane-Jumping, Bone-Breaking, Death-Defying Hollywood Life.

Hal Needham spent most of the 1950s and '60s falling off horses, wrecking stagecoach wagons and falling from really, really high places.

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11:34am

Fri November 1, 2013
Interviews

From Kids' Books To Erotica, Tomi Ungerer's 'Far Out' Life

Originally published on Fri November 1, 2013 3:54 pm

Tomi Ungerer has published more than 140 books.
Sam Norval Corner of the Cave Media

This interview was originally broadcast on July 1, 2013. Far Out Isn't Far Enough has just been released on DVD.

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3:25pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Movie Interviews

Jared Leto Was 'Seduced' By Role Of Rayon In 'Buyers Club'

In Dallas Buyers Club, Jared Leto plays Rayon, a transgender woman who is HIV-positive and struggling with a drug habit. "I always saw Rayon as someone who wanted to live ... life as a woman, not just someone who enjoyed putting on women's clothing," Leto says.
Anne Marie Fox Focus Features

Dallas Buyers Club is based on the story of Ron Woodroof, a rodeo cowboy and electrician, who was diagnosed as HIV-positive in 1985. With the latest drugs still in the trial phase, he was told he didn't have long to live. Without access to possibly life-prolonging drugs, he sought out alternative treatments in Mexico and smuggled those drugs into the U.S., forming a buyers club for fellow HIV patients.

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2:53pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Book Reviews

Dickensian Ambition And Emotion Make 'Goldfinch' Worth The Wait

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 3:39 pm

"Dickensian" is one of those literary modifiers that's overused. But before I officially retire this ruined adjective (or exile it to Australia, as Dickens himself would have done), I want to give it one final outing, because no other word will do. Here goes: Donna Tartt's grand new novel, The Goldfinch, is Dickensian both in the ambition of its jumbo, coincidence-laced plot, as well as in its symphonic range of emotions.

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12:06pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Music Reviews

Brandy Clark Tells The 'Stories' That Are Tough To Hear

Originally published on Mon November 18, 2013 9:12 am

Brandy Clark's new album is titled 12 Stories.
Becky Fluke Courtesy of the artist

2:48pm

Wed October 30, 2013
Author Interviews

Astronaut Chris Hadfield Brings Lessons From Space Down To Earth

Originally published on Thu October 31, 2013 2:30 pm

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield has spent a total of six months in space. In his new book, he writes that getting to space took only "8 minutes and 42 seconds. Give or take a few thousand days of training."
NASA Courtesy of Little, Brown and Company

2:13pm

Tue October 29, 2013
The Fresh Air Interview

Never Back Down: Fresh Air Remembers Lou Reed

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 2:43 pm

"[Lou Reed] really saw the beauty of life, and wanted to be a person who could live in that beauty as often as possible," longtime publicist Bill Bentley says.
Karl Walter Getty Images

12:56pm

Mon October 28, 2013
Author Interviews

Botched Investigation Fuels Kennedy Conspiracy Theories

Originally published on Mon October 28, 2013 3:11 pm

It's been 50 years since President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963, and polls show that a majority of Americans still believe Kennedy was the victim of a conspiracy, not a lone assassin. Though an official investigation concluded that Kennedy was killed by Lee Harvey Oswald acting alone, conspiracy theories about the assassination were spawned almost immediately, and they keep coming to this day: Republican consultant Roger Stone has a new book — The Man Who Killed Kennedy: The Case Against LBJ — arguing Lyndon Johnson was behind the crime.

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9:03am

Sat October 26, 2013
Fresh Air Weekend

Fresh Air Weekend: 'Wheelmen,' 'Jezebel' And '12 Years A Slave'

Originally published on Sat October 26, 2013 12:13 pm

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:

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12:30pm

Fri October 25, 2013
Movie Reviews

In Emotionally Charged 'Blue,' Sex Is Graphic, But Not Gratuitous

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 2:30 pm

Blue Is the Warmest Color chronicles the love affair between high school student Adèle (Adèle Exarchopoulos, left) and Emma (Léa Seydoux), who is older and more experienced.
IFC Films/Sundance Selects/Wild Bunch

Blue Is the Warmest Color is a lesbian coming-of-age movie, and its long and graphic sex scenes have already generated controversy. The director, Abdellatif Kechiche, is a man, and at least one prominent female critic has accused him of leading with his own libido — a charge that I vigorously dispute, but of course I'm a man so take that as you will. Here's what I saw: a film that captures the intensity of sexual discovery — and dependency — in a way I've never seen. It's 179 minutes, every one of them charged. It's a remarkable experience.

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12:22pm

Fri October 25, 2013
Interviews

Anat Cohen: Bringing The Clarinet To The World

Originally published on Fri October 25, 2013 1:21 pm

Claroscuro showcases the range of Anat Cohen's influences, from New Orleans-style jazz to the music of Brazil.
Courtesy of the artist

This interview was originally broadcast on Feb. 6, 2013.

Clarinetist Anat Cohen is one of a handful of Israeli jazz musicians making a mark on the American jazz scene. She's been voted Clarinetist of the Year six years in a row by the Jazz Journalists Association, and her album, Claroscuro, showcases the range of her talents and musical influences, from New Orleans-style jazz to Israel to Latin music — particularly that of Brazil.

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2:25pm

Thu October 24, 2013
Movie Interviews

Historian Says '12 Years' Is A Story The Nation Must Remember

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 3:46 pm

Chiwetel Ejiofor plays Solomon Northup, a free black man in upstate New York who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841 and won his freedom 12 years later. The film 12 Years a Slave is an adaptation of Northup's 1853 memoir.
Jaap Buitendijk Fox Searchlight

"We love being the country that freed the slaves," says historian David Blight. But "we're not so fond of being the country that had the biggest slave system on the planet." That's why Blight was glad to see the new film 12 Years a Slave, an adaptation of an 1853 memoir by Solomon Northup. Northup was a free black man who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841 and won his freedom 12 years later. "We need to keep telling this story because it, in part, made us who we were," Blight tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

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1:33pm

Thu October 24, 2013
Movie Interviews

'12 Years A Slave' Was A Film That 'No One Was Making'

Originally published on Thu October 24, 2013 3:46 pm

12 Years a Slave, starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, is based on an 1853 memoir by Solomon Northup, a free black man in upstate New York who was kidnapped into slavery in 1841.
Jaap Buitendijk Fox Searchlight

The new movie 12 Years a Slave has been receiving high praise — critic David Denby recently described it in The New Yorker as "easily the greatest feature film ever made about American slavery." The film is adapted from the 1853 memoir by Solomon Northup, who had been a free black man in upstate New York. A husband and father, he was a literate, working man, who also made money as a fiddler. But in 1841, after being lured to Washington, D.C., with the promise of several days' work fiddling with the circus, he was kidnapped into slavery.

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