It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders Each week, Sam Sanders interviews people in the culture who deserve your attention. Plus weekly wraps of the news with other journalists. Join Sam as he makes sense of the world through conversation.
IBAM
NPR

It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders

From NPR

Each week, Sam Sanders interviews people in the culture who deserve your attention. Plus weekly wraps of the news with other journalists. Join Sam as he makes sense of the world through conversation.

Most Recent Episodes

Comedian Nicole Byer performs onstage. Getty Images for Turner hide caption

toggle caption
Getty Images for Turner

Nicole Byer's '#VeryFat #VeryBrave' guide to bikini confidence

Sam revisits his 2020 conversation with comedian and Nailed It! host Nicole Byer on her coffee table book: #VeryFat #VeryBrave: The Fat Girl's Guide to Being #Brave and Not a Dejected, Melancholy, Down-in-the-Dumps Weeping Fat Girl in a Bikini. They talk about home goods, drunken bravery, and learning to love yourself.

Nicole Byer's '#VeryFat #VeryBrave' guide to bikini confidence

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1045432095/1046511742" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

In the third part of our series exploring crossover in pop music, we reexamine the so-called "Latin explosion" of the '90s: what it was supposed to be for audiences across the U.S., and what it actually came to represent. Blake Cale for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Blake Cale for NPR

1999's 'Latin Explosion' chased crossover hits. Today, Latino artists don't need them

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Latino artists like Ricky Martin, Marc Anthony, Jennifer Lopez and Shakira ruled the pop charts. But who was that so-called "Latin Explosion" actually for, and what were the business considerations behind it? In the third part of our series exploring crossover in pop music, we examine how this supposed boom turned out to be more of a marketing creation, which evaporated when digital streaming entered the picture. You can follow us on Twitter @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at samsanders@npr.org.

1999's 'Latin Explosion' chased crossover hits. Today, Latino artists don't need them

  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1041340876/1044645381" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

DeAnne Stidham and Mark Stidham, founders of multi-level marketing scheme LuLaRoe, from the documentary Lularich. Courtesy of Amazon Prime Video hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Amazon Prime Video

'LuLaRich' reveals how MLMs mirror the American economy

Sam interviews women's work and economic justice writer Meg Conley about the documentary series LuLaRich and how vulnerable people still get sucked into multi-level marketing schemes because their shape mirrors the American economy. Then, Harvard Ph.D. candidate and Mormon Studies Fellow at the University of Utah Janan Graham-Russell joins for a game of Who Said That?

'LuLaRich' reveals how MLMs mirror the American economy

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1043810409/1044552807" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Thirty-five years ago, Janet Jackson released an album that changed the course of her career, and of pop music. Blake Cale for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Blake Cale for NPR

Janet Jackson Once Had 'Control' of the Charts. We Don't Give Her Enough Credit

On the 35th anniversary of Janet Jackson's first No. 1 Billboard Hot 100 hit, we look back at Control, her career-defining album that changed the trajectory of pop music in the late '80s and '90s. In the second episode of a three-part series exploring crossover in pop music, we look at Jackson's musical and cultural legacy over the years. We also reconsider how Jackson was vilified after her Super Bowl XXXVIII appearance, and why. You can follow us on Twitter at @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at samsanders@npr.org.

Janet Jackson Once Had 'Control' of the Charts. We Don't Give Her Enough Credit

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1040886138/1043205321" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A father carries his son across the water at the US-Mexico border on the Rio Grande as seen from Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila state, Mexico on September 20, 2021. AFP via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
AFP via Getty Images

Has immigration changed much under Biden?

How much has really changed in U.S. immigration policy since President Biden came into office? After seeing graphic images of Haitian migrants being chased by law enforcement on horseback and a recent rejection of an immigration reform bill in Congress, The Atlantic staff writer Caitlin Dickerson breaks down the long history uniting Democratic and Republican administrations when it comes to enforcing immigration policy. She also plays Who Said That? with her friend and senior producer of NPR's Life Kit, Meghan Keane.

Has immigration changed much under Biden?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1041851194/1042515999" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Soul Train made its national television premiere 50 years ago, in October 1971. Blake Cale for NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Blake Cale for NPR

There Was Nothing Like 'Soul Train' On TV. There's Never Been Anything Like It Since

When Soul Train was first nationally syndicated in October 1971, there was nothing else like it on TV. It became an iconic Black music and dance show — a party every weekend that anyone could join from their living room. In the first episode of a three-part series exploring crossover in pop music, we break down the lasting influence of Soul Train on our culture with Hanif Abdurraqib, author of A Little Devil in America. We ask: Why has there never been another show like Soul Train since it went off the air? You can follow us on Twitter @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at samsanders@npr.org.

There Was Nothing Like 'Soul Train' On TV. There's Never Been Anything Like It Since

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1037118049/1041041217" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

People attending "The Lion King" arrive at the door as numerous Broadway shows re-open for the first time since closing in March 2020 on September 14, 2021 in New York City. Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Getty Images

COVID Forever? Plus, Broadway's Back

Ever since the pandemic hit, life has been split into two timelines: before the pandemic and after the pandemic. But when will the "after" truly be after? Or will some version of the coronavirus be around... forever? Sam talks to The Atlantic staff writer Katherine Wu about continuing to live with some version of COVID-19. Plus, Sam talks to playwright Heidi Schreck and actress Cassie Beck, who are currently in rehearsals for the upcoming tour of the Broadway play What The Constitution Means to Me. As live theater returns, they talk about what the last 18 months have been like and how theater has changed for the long term.

COVID Forever? Plus, Broadway's Back

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1040185209/1040563027" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Author Brandon Taylor writes into the tension of everyday relationships. Penguin Random House hide caption

toggle caption
Penguin Random House

Brandon Taylor Wrote 'Real Life' And 'Filthy Animals' For His Queer, Black Friends

Author Brandon Taylor used to spend most of his hours studying nematodes under a microscope as a grad student. He wrote his first novel over a period of five weeks, mostly while in a lab. That book, Real Life, was released in 2020 to much critical acclaim. He published his second book this year, a short story collection called Filthy Animals.

Brandon Taylor Wrote 'Real Life' And 'Filthy Animals' For His Queer, Black Friends

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1036930975/1039031130" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Harvey Guillén as Guillermo in What We Do in the Shadows. FX hide caption

toggle caption
FX

'Machiavelli for Women'; Plus, 'What We Do in the Shadows'

Sam is joined by NPR's The Indicator host Stacey Vanek Smith to talk about her new book, Machiavelli for Women and how women in the workplace are still falling behind. Plus, actor Harvey Guillén on the new season of the FX show What We Do in the Shadows and not waiting for people to be comfortable with his "brownness, queerness and roundness" to be comfortable in his own skin.

'Machiavelli for Women'; Plus, 'What We Do in the Shadows'

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1037918829/1038415923" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Yebba's debut album is called Dawn. RCA Records hide caption

toggle caption
RCA Records

Yebba Sheds Old Beliefs With A New Album

It was 2016, and Yebba's career was beginning to take off. But 2016 was also the year that something awful happened: Yebba's mother committed suicide. And that changed everything, too.

Yebba Sheds Old Beliefs With A New Album

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1033700723/1036653715" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
or search npr.org