Studio 360 With Kurt Andersen The Peabody Award-winning Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen, from PRI, is a smart and surprising guide to what's happening in pop culture and the arts. Each week, Kurt introduces the people who are creating and shaping our culture. Life is busy – so let Studio 360 steer you to the must-see movie this weekend, the next book for your nightstand, or the song that will change your life. Produced in association with Slate.
Studio 360 With Kurt Andersen

Studio 360 With Kurt Andersen

From PRI

The Peabody Award-winning Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen, from PRI, is a smart and surprising guide to what's happening in pop culture and the arts. Each week, Kurt introduces the people who are creating and shaping our culture. Life is busy – so let Studio 360 steer you to the must-see movie this weekend, the next book for your nightstand, or the song that will change your life. Produced in association with Slate.More from Studio 360 With Kurt Andersen »

Most Recent Episodes

Pure speculation

Speculative fiction — the catch-all term for non-realist genres — in its many forms. Remembering the irascible speculative fiction writer Harlan Ellison. How reading a sex scene in an Isaac Asimov book changes an adolescent's understanding of gender identity. Colson Whitehead reads from his zombie novel "Zone One." And tracing the sci-fi-themed Afrofuturist tradition in music, from Sun Ra to Janelle Monáe.

Day Jobs: Respiratory Therapist

Stacey Rose is a playwright in Saint Paul, Minnesota but by day — and sometimes also by night — she's a respiratory therapist. Stacey is also a fellow with the Sundance Institute Theatre Lab and her play, "The Danger: A Homage to Strange Fruit" just played in Brooklyn. As part of our Day Jobs series, Stacey told us about her two very different passions. This podcast was produced by Studio 360's Sandra Lopez-Monsalve and Schuyler Swenson.

All most famous

Kurt Andersen and Theresa Rebeck discuss her new play about the most acclaimed actress of her day, Sarah Bernhardt. Justine Bateman's new book examines being inside — and then outside — the fame bubble. A listener finds something surprising inside a book at a used bookstore — an inscription from the famous author of the book to an even more famous novelist. And how New York hip-hop pirate radio station WBAD rose — and fell.

Mind the Generation Gap

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Don McLean's "American Pie"

It was late in 1971 when the singer-songwriter Don McLean released his song, "American Pie." Today, everybody still seems to know all the words... but nobody seems to know what those words really mean. Who is the "jester [who] sang for the King and Queen/In a coat he borrowed from James Dean?" And what was it that "touched [the singer] deep inside/The day the music died"? Don McLean himself helps break down the song, as well as author Raymond I. Schuck. And the singer Garth Brooks talks about his love for the song, and performing it onstage with McLean. "American Pie" was recently chosen by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Recording Registry. This podcast was produced by Jennie Cataldo/BMP Audio. This episode is brought to you by Intel Optane Memory. Learn more about the speed and responsiveness of Optane at intel.com/youcould.

Hawkish

Ethan Hawke came of age as a Gen X heartthrob, but he's stayed relevant and is as busy as ever. He's appeared recently in Paul Schrader's "First Reformed" and the Nick Hornby adaptation "Juliet, Naked," and the fourth film he's directed, "Blaze," is out now. Edward Hopper's "Nighthawks" has become so strongly associated with film noir, it's hard to know whether film noir was more influenced by the painting or the other way around. And the members of Balún explain how they developed a sound they describe as "music that you can sleep to while dancing."

Pacific Northbest

Swingin' on the flippity-flop in the PNW. Sub Pop CEO Megan Jasper on her legendary hoax on The New York Times with her lexicon of grunge terms. Carrie Brownstein on Sleater-Kinney and the difference between TV stardom and music stardom. What residents in the Washington towns where "Twin Peaks" was filmed love — and hate — about the show. And the generation-defining album that is Nirvana's "Nevermind."

BoJack Horseman's Raphael Bob-Waksberg

BoJack Horseman, Netflix's animated series about a washed-up '90s sitcom star living in the Hollywood Hills, is beginning its fifth season. Its protagonist is half-horse, half-man, and its tone is half-jokes, half-existential-angst. That's a study in contrasts that seems inexplicable—until you talk with the show's creator, Raphael Bob-Waksberg. Bob-Waksberg is about as introspective, funny and dark as you can be at the tender age of 34. In 2017, he talked with host Kurt Andersen about why so many people who go to Harvard are dummies, the genius of the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and the underappreciated poignancy of The Simpsons. This podcast was produced by Schuyler Swenson.

Apocalypse, wow

Ann Dowd, who won an Emmy for her portrayal of Aunt Lydia on "The Handmaid's Tale," joins Kurt to talk about playing characters — many of them terrifying — for three decades. In the 1960s, when hippies turned to Christianity in what's commonly called the Jesus Movement, Christian rock was born. And so was a belief that the end of the world was coming any minute. And how the guitarist Stephane Wrembel's life was changed when he discovered Django Reinhardt.

EGOT to have it

Only 12 entertainers have won the EGOT sweep: Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony. In this hour of Studio 360, we look back at some of our favorite stories about EGOT winners. Composers Robert Lopez and Marvin Hamlisch both perform in our studio. Mel Brooks' classic comedy skit, "The 2,000 Year Old Man." And finding inspiration in Whoopi Goldberg's stand-up.

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