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Bullseye from NPR is your curated guide to culture. Jesse Thorn hosts in-depth interviews with brilliant creators, culture picks from our favorite critics and irreverent original comedy. Bullseye has been featured in Time, The New York Times, GQ and McSweeney's, which called it "the kind of show people listen to in a more perfect world." (Formerly known as The Sound of Young America.)
 
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The Turnaround with Jesse Thorn

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The Turnaround with Jesse Thorn

Maximum Fun and Columbia Journalism Review

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The Turnaround is a new series about our greatest living interviewers, hosted by Jesse Thorn and produced by Maximum Fun and The Columbia Journalism Review. Featuring conversations with prominent interviewers about their careers and their craft, the show is a perfect resource for a new generation of storytellers and journalists. You'll hear Jesse speak with Larry King, Terry Gross, Werner Herzog, Audie Cornish, and so many more!
 
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In a time where there is a lot going on in the world, it is nice to have a break every once in a while. To find something silly, something weird and something that can transport you somewhere else completely. Perhaps to a place where iguanas are mail carriers, one where ATMs sprout from the ground in the city park and lawn hedges are trimmed with s…
 
Gilbert Gottfried died last month. The standup comedian and actor was 67. To millennials of a certain age, he was an iconic voice actor: Iago in Aladdin, Kraang Subprime in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the voice of Aflac Duck commercials. We're taking a moment to remember Gilbert's life by revisiting our conversation from 2017. At the time, he …
 
Ron Carter is a legend in the world of jazz. His work as a bassist has appeared on thousands of recordings, and has the world records to prove it. In a career that spans over five decades, he's won three Grammys – and he's worked with folks like Miles Davis, Alice Coltrane, Aretha Franklin, Herbie Hancock, Billy Joel and A Tribe Called Quest. Ron t…
 
Alan Alda has been performing for over six decades. He played the iconic role of Hawkeye in M*A*S*H , was Arnold Vinnick on The West Wing and starred in several other memorable roles over the years. He has also had parts in a number of films and performed on Broadway. Alda is also an almost-journalist, a communicator and an interviewer. For almost …
 
Paul Feig created TV shows like Freaks and Geeks, movies like Bridesmaids, Unaccompanied Minors and Spy. He's directed episodes of 30 Rock, The Office, Mad Men and more. He's basically a legend, and he keeps plenty busy. He helped produce the new HBO show Minx – it's a period comedy about the first women's erotic magazine. He also helped make the n…
 
We welcome a true "Superstar" on the latest episode, the one and only Molly Shannon! She's one of the greatest comic actors ever. Shannon just wrote a book. It's called Hello, Molly: A Memoir. In the book, Molly Shannon shares her life story. She writes about her time on Saturday Night Live, but also her childhood. Shannon's mother, younger sister …
 
Courtney B. Vance started acting in college. He went to Yale drama school, where he met his future wife Angela Bassett. He starred in the debut performance of August Wilson's Fences, first at the Yale repertory theater in 1985, then later on Broadway in 1987. Since then, he has gone on to work on the big and small screen, too. He has had parts on s…
 
Chloë Sevigny is, in a word: cool. She has an impeccable fashion sense and makes waves in that world. She's an Oscar nominated actor for her role in Boys Don't Cry. An indie darling in films like The Last Days of Disco and Broken Flowers. She's had regular roles on shows like Big Love and American Horror Story, too. We were big fans of her recurrin…
 
Parks and Recreation's Jean-Ralphio! Star Wars' BB-8! The voice of Sonic the Hedgehog! We're joined by Ben Schwartz. Ben's big break came in 2010 with a small recurring role on Parks and Recreation. Jean-Ralphio was a character who only showed up a few times a year – but he was one of the most memorable characters on the show. We'll chat at length …
 
John Leguizamo has been in well over 100 movies and TV shows, including the recent Academy Award-winning animated smash Encanto. That is impressive enough but John's also a writer who has created and starred in a handful of powerful, hilarious one-man shows over his career. This includes his 2019 show, Latin History for Morons. During the show's ru…
 
Chuck Klosterman writes about culture. Pop culture, more specifically. Rock bands, basketball teams, adult entertainment, Saved by the Bell... you get the idea. He was a writer who wrote volumes of hot pop culture takes before being a writer with hot pop culture takes was just, y'know, being a writer. He's positioned himself as a writer who doesn't…
 
Mary Roach is a science writer who covers very specific branches of research: sex in space, cadaver handling, that sort of thing. Her newest book is called Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law. It's a book about how humans have tried – and failed to manage nature. Bears that break into dumpsters. Moose stepping into traffic. Gulls that eat papal flower…
 
This weekend on the show: Steven Van Zandt! Of course, you might know him better as Little Steven, a guitarist for Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, or as Silvio Dante, Tony Soprano's right-hand man. He's a singer, an actor, a guitar player, a famous wearer of head scarves. A man of many talents! He recounts all that in Unrequited Infatuations: A …
 
Amy Schumer is, of course, the creator and star of the hit sketch show Inside Amy Schumer. She also wrote and starred in the critically acclaimed romcom Trainwreck and has taped several comedy specials. She has been nominated for Emmys, Grammys, Golden Globes, a Tony, and even won a Peabody award for Inside Amy Schumer. Amy's newest project is a se…
 
J. Kenji López-Alt is a chaf and food writer who has written for the New York Times, Cook's Illustrated, Serious Eats, and more. A lot of his recipes perfect the staples including steak, potatoes, beans, eggs, mayo, and mushroom soup. If you are a home cook, odds are you have a recipe from Kenji you swear by. In 2015, he compiled a lot of his signa…
 
For the first chapter of his career, Nick Kroll's comedy centered around big, outsized characters – the more preposterous the better. He created the sketch comedy series Kroll Show, and he starred on the FX show The League. These days he's behind the camera a lot more. In 2017, he co-created the animated show Big Mouth on Netflix. Now he's got a ne…
 
On December 18, 2021, the rapper Drakeo the Ruler was murdered backstage at a festival in Los Angeles, his hometown. A group of 40 or so people ambushed him; one of them stabbed him to death. Drakeo was a young, rising rapper. Critics respected him and rap fans streamed his music millions of times. He was an LA gangsta rapper whose music didn't sou…
 
Greg Daniels is a screenwriter, television producer and director. Over the span of more than three decades he's worked on some of the most beloved comedy television shows. Seriously, he's worked on some of your favorite tv series: Seinfeld, The Simpsons, Saturday Night Live, The Office, King of The Hill, and so many more. These days, he still keeps…
 
The Song That Changed My Life gives us a chance to talk with different artists about the music that has inspired them. On the latest installment, we are joined by Eric Nam. Eric is an Atlanta-born singer, songwriter, and entertainer. He has worked with Timbaland, Gallant, Craig David, and a bunch of others and has headlined festivals like KCON and …
 
You probably know Brian Cox from Succession. He plays patriarch Logan Roy on the show. But Brian has hundreds of credits acting with a career spanning decades: movies, TV shows, even a stint with the Royal Shakespeare Company! Cox recounts his career in a new memoir. Putting the Rabbit in the Hat covers his childhood, growing up in postwar Dundee, …
 
Syl Johnson, the Chicago soul and blues singer, died last month at 85. He was probably best known for his work on Hi Records, the home of Ann Peebles and, of course, Al Green. In fact, he turned down a record deal that ended up going to Green. The songs Johnson cut for Hi in Memphis were some of the best soul records of their time. Hip-hop producer…
 
Alana Haim has been leading two very distinct careers. First, there's her music - Alana is one third of the Grammy nominated, critically acclaimed rock group Haim. And then there's her acting. Alana made her big screen Debut in the new Paul Thomas Anderson film Licorice Pizza. The role has earned her a Golden Globe nomination along with a bunch of …
 
Betty Davis died earlier this month. She was 77. She was the very definition of a cult hero – she never cut a hit record, but her influence is still strong today. Her music was absolutely unforgettable, and her style was outrageous, like a funky Barbarella with a two-foot-wide Afro. Her band was the best of the best. Even her husband was influentia…
 
You read that right: Chrsitopher Walken! One of the greatest character actors ever. So many iconic parts: King of New York, Pulp Fiction, The Deer Hunter, Catch Me If You Can, and Hairspray. These days, you can see him on the dystopian workplace dramedy Severance. Christopher Walken talks about Severance and working alongside John Turturro. He'll a…
 
The Craziest Day of My Entire Career is a segment that gives us the chance to talk with some of our favorite people about the weirdest workday they have experienced so far. This week, our guest is Alan Tudyk. Alan is a brilliant character actor and a performer who can do a thousand and one impressions. He has worked in movies like Rogue One, I, Rob…
 
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