Fresh Air 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.
Fresh Air
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Fresh Air

From NPR

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.

Most Recent Episodes

'How To Be An Adult' & 'Real American' Author Julie Lythcott-Haims

Former Stanford University undergraduate dean Julie Lythcott-Haims' new book, 'Your Turn: How to Be an Adult,' is a handbook on adulthood, offering insights and strategies on education and career choices, building friendships and coping with setbacks. Her 2017 memoir, 'Real American,' is the story of her coming to terms with her biracial identity. Her father was a successful African American physician, her mother a white British woman. We talk about both books and her upbringing.

'How To Be An Adult' & 'Real American' Author Julie Lythcott-Haims

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Best Of: Choreographer Twyla Tharp / Henry Louis Gates On 'The Black Church'

'Twyla Moves,' a new documentary by PBS American Masters, tells the story of the legendary choreographer and dancer, who got her start performing on subway platforms and rooftops in the 1960s. "If it was kind of level, it was fair territory," she tells Terry Gross.

Best Of: Choreographer Twyla Tharp / Henry Louis Gates On 'The Black Church'

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Native Peoples' 'Long, Brutal Fight For Survival'

Louise Erdrich's novel, 'The Night Watchman,' was inspired by her grandfather, a chairman of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa who fought a Congressional initiative to move indigenous peoples off their land and into cities. Erdrich says the policy amounted to tribal termination. "Termination was a way to finally resolve what Congress thought of as 'the Indian problem,'" she says.

Native Peoples' 'Long, Brutal Fight For Survival'

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'Resistance' Podcast Host On The Fight For Black Lives

Saidu Tejan-Thomas Jr. lost a close friend from college to police violence. His Spotify podcast, 'Resistance,' explores different aspects of the movement for Black lives — including Tejan-Thomas Jr.'s personal history. We talk about his childhood in Sierra Leone, his poetry, and losing his parents at a young age.

'Resistance' Podcast Host On The Fight For Black Lives

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The 'Secret History' Of The Sackler Family & The Opioid Crisis

The Sackler family owns Purdue Pharma, which made billions of dollars selling OxyContin, an opiate painkiller stronger than morphine. Introduced in 1996, OxyContin has been largely blamed for the opioid addiction crisis that followed. The Sacklers and the company are currently facing more than 2,500 lawsuits related to its practices. We talk with journalist Patrick Radden Keefe about the development of OxyContin, what the family knew about the danger of the drug, and how they have tried to thwart his reporting. His book is 'Empire of Pain.'

The 'Secret History' Of The Sackler Family & The Opioid Crisis

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Henry Louis Gates Jr. On The Black Church

The 'Finding Your Roots' host has a new book and PBS series called 'The Black Church.' Gates describes the Black church as "the cultural cauldron Black people created to combat a system designed in every way to crush their spirit." We'll talk about the bargain Gates made with Jesus when he was 12 in an attempt to save his mother's life. He'll tell us how that bargain changed him, and how his relationship to the church has changed over the years.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. On The Black Church

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Leslie Odom Jr. / 'Promising Young Woman' Filmmaker Emerald Fennell

Tony and Grammy-winning actor Leslie Odom Jr. is best-known for his role as Aaron Burr in 'Hamilton.' Now he stars as Sam Cooke in Regina King's film 'One Night in Miami,' which imagines a night where Cassius Clay, Malcolm X, Jim Brown and Cooke meet. Odom talks about studying Cooke's voice, hearing Burr's song "Wait for It" for the first time, and how the musical 'Rent' inspired him as a teen. Odom is nominated for two Oscars — for his role as Sam Cooke and for his original song, "Speak Now."

Leslie Odom Jr. / 'Promising Young Woman' Filmmaker Emerald Fennell

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Best Of: Brandi Carlile / Palestinian Cookbook Author Reem Kassis

Six-time Grammy winner Brandi Carlile got her start onstage as a kid, singing backup for an Elvis impersonator. Her new memoir, 'Broken Horses,' is about her early life and the family of misfits she's built. "I think I'm starting to really feel sort of solid and loved in my world. Like maybe I've kind of finally found my place," she says.

Best Of: Brandi Carlile / Palestinian Cookbook Author Reem Kassis

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Prolific Background Singer Merry Clayton

Singer Merry Clayton did the iconic background vocals of the 1969 Rolling Stones song "Gimme Shelter." But despite the fame and success of the record, Clayton remained largely anonymous. Until, that is, she was featured as one of the backup singers in the 2014 Oscar-winning documentary '20 Feet from Stardom.' Over the course of her career, Clayton sang with Ray Charles, Joe Cocker, Carole King and many others. Now she's got a new album — where she's front and center — called 'Beautiful Scars.' She spoke with Terry Gross in 2013.

Prolific Background Singer Merry Clayton

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Choreographer Twyla Tharp

'Twyla Moves,' a new documentary by PBS American Masters, tells the story of the legendary choreographer and dancer, who got her start performing on subway platforms and rooftops in the 1960s. "If it was kind of level, it was fair territory," she says. We talk about starting an all-women dance company, mixing classical and modern dance, and choreographing dancers over Zoom in the pandemic.

Choreographer Twyla Tharp

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