Fresh Air

Weekdays 3-4 p.m., rebroadcast 9-10 p.m.
Terry Gross

Fresh Air opens the window on contemporary arts and issues with guests from worlds as diverse as literature and economics. Terry Gross hosts this multi-award-winning daily interview and features program. The veteran public radio interviewer is known for her extraordinary ability to engage guests of all dispositions. Every weekday she delights intelligent and curious listeners with revelations on contemporary societal concerns.

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The Salt
1:25 pm
Tue March 10, 2015

'Test Kitchen': How To Make Vegetarian Dishes Pop With A Little Umami

Jack Bishop says it's the soy sauce in the Mushroom Bolognese that really makes it pop.
Joe Keller Courtesy of America's Test Kitchen

Originally published on Fri March 13, 2015 10:46 am

Just because a meal is vegetarian doesn't mean it can't be "meaty." One trick to heighten the depth of flavors in plant-based dishes? Use ingredients that offer a pop of umami, say Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop of America's Test Kitchen, who have released the new cookbook The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook.

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Remembrances
1:25 pm
Tue March 10, 2015

Fresh Air Remembers Pioneering Documentary Filmmaker Albert Maysles

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Television
2:08 pm
Mon March 9, 2015

'Better Call Saul' Breathes New Life Into 'Breaking Bad' Characters

Jonathan Banks' character Mike Ehrmantraut (left), a hit man and fixer, was a natural to bring back to Breaking Bad's prequel Better Call Saul. Co-creator Peter Gould says he was the right contrast with Saul Goodman, played by Bob Odenkirk (right).
Ben Leuner AMC

Originally published on Mon March 9, 2015 6:58 pm

The new show Better Call Saul imagines what slip 'n fall lawyer turned criminal attorney Saul Goodman's life was like before he met Walter White, the main character of Breaking Bad. It tells the story of how Saul, played by Bob Odenkirk, started out as Jimmy McGill, a public defender who is so broke that his home and office are the backroom of a nail salon.

Better Call Saul co-creator Peter Gould, who also wrote for Breaking Bad, says that centering a new show on Saul Goodman was completely organic.

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Music
2:00 pm
Mon March 9, 2015

James McMurtry Is More Expressive Than Ever On 'Complicated Game'

Originally published on Tue March 10, 2015 12:33 pm

Complicated Game is James McMurtry's first new studio album since 2008. The Texas-born singer-songwriter, now based in Austin, is known for songs with strong narratives and a blend of country, blues, and rock melodies. Fresh Air rock critic Ken Tucker says Complicated Game demonstrates a new range of style and subject matter for McMurtry.

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Fresh Air Weekend
9:46 am
Sat March 7, 2015

Fresh Air Weekend: Larry David, 'High Maintenance' Creators And Chris Offutt

David also co-created the NBC series Seinfeld. That show's character George Costanza is loosely based on David.
Thos Robinson Getty Images for The New Yorker

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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Movie Reviews
12:43 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

In The Northern Ireland Period Thriller '71,' No One Dies Well

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History
12:43 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

Fresh Air Pays Tribute To The 50th Anniversary Of Bloody Sunday

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Book Reviews
1:09 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

In 'The Buried Giant,' Exhausted Medieval Travelers 'Can't Go On,' But So 'Go On'

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Theater
1:09 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Larry David's First Time On Broadway: 'It's Not So Easy!'

David also co-created the NBC series Seinfeld. That show's character George Costanza is loosely based on David.
Thos Robinson Getty Images for The New Yorker

Originally published on Thu March 5, 2015 2:59 pm

Larry David wrote and stars in a new play that has broken the all-time record on Broadway for advance ticket sales — more than $14 million. Fish in the Dark is a comedy about a family's rivalries and dysfunction as its patriarch passes away. David tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies that the idea came to him when a friend's father died.

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Music
1:09 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

On 'Collective Portrait,' Eddie Henderson Is Still Taking Risks At 74

Jazz trumpet and flugelhorn player Eddie Henderson was in his 30s when he debuted on record with Herbie Hancock. Before that he'd become a medical doctor, who went on to specialize in psychiatry, because it left his nights free to play the horn. With Henderson's new album, Collective Portrait, Fresh Air jazz Critic Kevin Whitehead says that decision is still paying off for him.

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Television
1:14 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

'American Crime' And 'The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt' Highlight The TV Revolution

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 1:20 pm

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Author Interviews
1:14 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

A 'Girl In A Band': Kim Gordon On Life After Sonic Youth

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 1:20 pm

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Music
1:14 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Nora Jane Struthers Is Wide Awake On New Album

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 1:20 pm

Nora Jane Struthers is a singer-songwriter who grew up in New Jersey and was teaching high-school English in Brooklyn before moving to Nashville to attempt a full-time career in music. With her band The Party Line, she's just released a new album called Wake. Fresh Air rock critic Ken Tucker has a review.

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NPR Ed
1:28 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Prepare For 'The End Of College': Here's What Free Higher Ed Looks Like

Kevin Carey'€™s writing has appeared in The New York Times, Slate and The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Amanda Gaines Courtesy of Riverhead

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 3:58 pm

A lot of parents start worrying about paying for college education soon after their child is born. After that, there's the stressful process of applying to colleges, and then, for those lucky enough to get admitted into a good college, there's college debt.

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Book Reviews
1:19 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

'Welcome To Braggsville' Isn't Quite 'Invisible Man,' But It's Close

Emily Jan NPR

Here's only a partial list of great American writers whose names came to mind as I was reading T. Geronimo Johnson's new novel, Welcome to Braggsville: Tom Wolfe, Mark Twain, Toni Morrison, H.L. Mencken, Don DeLillo, David Foster Wallace, Norman Mailer and Ralph Ellison, Ralph Ellison, Ralph Ellison. Johnson's timely novel is a tipsy social satire about race and the oh-so-fragile ties that bind disparate parts of this country into an imperfect and restless union.

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Remembrances
1:19 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Fresh Air Remembers 'Jazz Master' Orrin Keepnews

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Author Interviews
12:20 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

Chris Offutt Reveals A Family Secret In 'My Father, The Pornographer'

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Music
12:20 pm
Mon March 2, 2015

'Now Is The Time' For Organist Chris Foreman

Originally published on Mon March 9, 2015 10:00 am

With guitarist Bobby Broom, organist Chris Foreman has recorded several albums with the Deep Blue Organ Trio. Fresh Air jazz critic Kevin Whitehead says Foreman is one of a few Chicago jazz heroes who should be better known outside the city limits.

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Fresh Air Weekend
10:29 am
Sat February 28, 2015

Fresh Air Weekend: Larry Wilmore, The Smart Home And Bill Gifford

Larry Wilmore debuts Comedy Central's The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore on Jan. 19.
Stephen Lovekin Getty Images for Comedy Central

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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Movie Reviews
12:44 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

'Maps To The Stars': Either The Funniest Horror Movie, Or The Most Horrific Comedy

Originally published on Mon March 2, 2015 2:43 pm

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Author Interviews
12:44 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

From Poker Amateur To World Series Competitor In 'The Noble Hustle'

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Remembrances
12:44 pm
Fri February 27, 2015

Fresh Air Remembers Former Notre Dame President Rev. Theodore Hesburgh

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Shots - Health News
1:48 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

From Naked Mole Rats To Dog Testicles: A Writer Explores The Longevity Quest

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 3:03 pm

When journalist Bill Gifford turned 40, his friends gave him a cake shaped as a tombstone with the words, "R.I.P, My Youth." As he reflected on his creeping memory lapses and the weight he'd gained, Gifford got interested in the timeless quest to turn back the aging clock — or at least slow it down.

His latest book, Spring Chicken, explores everything from some wacky pseudo-cures for aging to fascinating research that point to causes of aging at the cellular level.

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Television
1:39 pm
Thu February 26, 2015

'Battle Creek' Has The Flavor Of A TV Throwback From An Earlier Age

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 3:28 pm

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All Tech Considered
1:14 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

The World Loves The Smartphone. So How About A Smart Home?

Guido Rosa Getty Images/Ikon Images

Originally published on Wed February 25, 2015 2:23 pm

My coffee maker is texting me again. It's scheduled to make coffee tomorrow, the message says, but I need to refill its water tank. Welcome to the future.

The Mr. Coffee Smart Optimal Brew Coffeemaker with WeMo — yes, that is its official name — is just one of many household appliances being remade to connect to the Internet and take care of themselves. There are thermostats, smoke alarms, washing machines and even $1,000 Bluetooth-connected toilets.

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Music Reviews
1:14 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Mavericks' Singer Raul Malo Restlessly Explores Genres

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National Security
1:14 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

A Hard Look At The Risks Of Transporting Oil On Rail Tanker Cars

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 12:42 pm

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Television
1:41 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

Fair Warning: Watch One 'Foyle's War' Episode, And You'll Want To Watch Them All

Michael Kitchen stars as Foyle, a widowed police superintendent in the coastal city of Hastings in England. His sidekick is his driver, Samantha Stewart, a vicar's daughter played by Honeysuckle Weeks.
Acorn TV/ITV

The satisfying thing about TV crime shows is that they offer a sense of closure. The unsatisfying thing is how much of life they must leave out to do it. Like, history. Whether you're talking CSI or Sherlock, crime shows tend to take place in a weirdly hermetic universe where the characters may change — like in True Detective — yet the historical moment in which they live remains largely irrelevant background.

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Author Interviews
1:36 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

After His Brother's Suicide, Writer Seeks Comfort In 'All The Wrong Places'

Philip Connors' first book Fire Season was about how he spent a few months every year for eight years as a fire lookout, living in a cabin and scanning the horizon with binoculars atop a 45-foot tower in a remote region of New Mexico.
Mark Ehling Courtesy of W.W. Norton & Co.

Originally published on Tue February 24, 2015 7:35 pm

When writer Philip Connors was in his 20s, he received a call from his mother that later haunted him: "You know, I spoke to your brother and he's been having trouble with his girlfriend — he sounded really down ... you should really call him."

"And when I hung up the phone, I thought to myself: 'Yeah, yeah, kid brother and his silly troubles with women, I'll get around to calling him. I'll call him in a few days, or maybe next week,' " Connors tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies.

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Book Reviews
2:09 pm
Mon February 23, 2015

Victorian Romance Meets 'House Of Cards' In 'Mr. And Mrs. Disraeli'

Originally published on Mon February 23, 2015 4:11 pm

A climb "to the top of a greasy pole" are the immortal words coined by 19th century British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli to describe his rise to political power. Disraeli was two-time prime minister under Queen Victoria, as well as a novelist and famous wit whose way with a catchy phrase was rivaled in the 19th century only by his younger admirer, Oscar Wilde. But when he entered politics in the 1830s, Disraeli was burdened by debt and, even more seriously, by his Jewish parentage.

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