September 23, 2013 The pop star has a flair for the extravagant, to say the least, but his new album is stripped down. He tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross about the "Elton John excess," his fear of sex as a young man, and how Liberace's example encouraged John to make the piano a star instrument.
September 20, 2013 In his HBO film, the acclaimed director examines the five-year relationship between the flamboyant entertainer and Scott Thorson, who was 40 years Liberace's junior and still a teenager when they met. Michael Douglas plays Liberace and Matt Damon plays Thorson.
September 20, 2013 The late actor stars opposite Julia Louis-Dreyfus in the new comedy about a divorced TV archivist who falls in love with a divorced masseuse. David Edelstein praises Louis-Dreyfus' farcical timing, as well Gandolfini's ability to change his rhythm and demeanor.
September 19, 2013 Evan Mandery's A Wild Justice is an account of the legal battles that led to the U.S. Supreme Court striking down capital punishment, then reversing course four years later. He says that today, prisoners who are sentenced to death have a 10 percent chance of actually being executed.
September 18, 2013 California parolee Charles Manson arrived in San Francisco in 1967, when the city was full of young waifs looking for a guru. In Manson, Jeff Guinn argues that if the cult leader had instead been paroled in a place like Nebraska, he likely would not have been so successful.
September 17, 2013 Last month, Ronstadt revealed that she has Parkinson's disease and can no longer sing. Her new memoir, Simple Dreams, reflects on a long career. In this conversation with Fresh Air's Terry Gross, she offers frank insights on sex, drugs, and why "competition was for horse races."
September 16, 2013 That's the collective nickname Harlem-ites used for them: white women who risked family exile and social ostracism to be part of the movement. They were philanthropists and thrill seekers,educators and artists, hostesses and lovers. Carla Kaplan tells their stories in Miss Anne in Harlem.
September 14, 2013 Journalist Barton Gellman recounts how he began corresponding with whistle-blower Edward Snowden, a new documentary looks at King's legacy as both a tennis champion and the leader of a female player uprising, and Lethem's new novel was inspired by his own family story.
September 13, 2013 The actress played Kelly Kapoor on The Office, a role she also wrote and produced. Now she runs a new Fox comedy, The Mindy Project, in which she stars as an obstetrician whose personal life is a mess. Kaling tells Fresh Air that her late mother inspired her character's career.
September 12, 2013 When dictionaries add trendy words like "twerk," they're prioritizing the fleeting language habits of the young, says Geoff Nunberg. And our fascination with novel words tends to eclipse subtle changes in the meanings of old ones — "which are often more consequential," he says.