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Live Wire with Luke Burbank
55 minutes | Jan 14, 2022
Connor Ratliff, Mikki Kendall, and Faye Webster
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share some feedback that's made the biggest impact on our listeners; actor Connor Ratliff explains how being fired by Tom Hanks inspired his hit podcast Dead Eyes, through which he unpacks showbiz rejection; Mikki Kendall, author of Hood Feminism, explains how to right the historical wrongs of the mainstream feminist movement; and indie folk artist Faye Webster performs "Better Distractions" from her latest album I Know I'm Funny haha.
25 minutes | Jan 12, 2022
Best News: Kangaroo on the Rocks
Luke and Elena discuss Dry January, breakthrough COVID, kangaroo rescues, and the legacy of Allen Toussaint.
55 minutes | Jan 7, 2022
Kaveh Akbar, Danielle Henderson, and Deep Sea Diver
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello discuss the things our audience is resolving *not* to do this year; celebrated poet Kaveh Akbar explains how learning Farsi as his first language shaped his poetic sense of the English language; writer Danielle Henderson (Feminist Ryan Gosling) unpacks her memoir The Ugly Cry and how her iconoclastic grandmother helped forge her own fiercely independent path; and indie rock group Deep Sea Diver performs "Impossible Weight," the title track off their newest album.
53 minutes | Dec 31, 2021
David Duchovny, Nick & Kaylee Woodard, and Jensen McRae
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello unveil some hidden talents of our listeners; actor and best-selling author David Duchovny explains how his latest novel Truly Like Lightning is an attempt to have a larger conversation about America; jump rope world champions Nick and Kaylee Woodard test Luke's skills with a virtual lesson; and alt-folk artist Jensen McRae performs her harrowing song "Wolves."
53 minutes | Dec 24, 2021
Talib Kweli, George Saunders, and Jillette Johnson
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello put a spin on some of our listeners’ favorite words and phrases; hip hop performer and activist Talib Kweli recounts stepping away from big-budget rap culture to become an independent artist; bestselling author George Saunders revisits his love of teaching through unpacking 19th century Russian literature; and singer-songwriter Jillette Johnson performs her incidentally-titled song "I Shouldn't Go Anywhere."
53 minutes | Dec 17, 2021
Ashley C. Ford and John Green
In this "Best of Books" special, Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share conversations with two of Live Wire's favorite guests from 2021: writer Ashely C. Ford discusses her celebrated debut book Somebody's Daughter, which follows her experience growing up in Indiana with an incarcerated father; and bestselling author and vlogger John Green (The Fault in our Stars) discusses his new collection of essays, The Anthropocene Reviewed, which expands upon his podcast to review different aspects of our human-shaped world, from Diet Dr. Pepper to sunsets.
53 minutes | Dec 10, 2021
Penny Lane, Omar El Akkad, and The Dip
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share the strange things listeners love that remain otherwise unpopular; filmmaker Penny Lane discusses her new HBO documentary about instrumentalist Kenny G and what makes his music so polarizing; writer Omar El Akkad unpacks his award-winning novel What Strange Paradise and how writing fiction freed him after a decade-long career in journalism; and Seattle soul revivalists The Dip perform "Sure Don't Miss You."
53 minutes | Dec 3, 2021
Roman Mars & Kurt Kohlstedt, Shayla Lawson, and Colin Hay
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello discuss some mysteries we can never seem to solve; 99% Invisible podcasters Roman Mars & Kurt Kohlstedt unveil the hidden world of everyday design in their companion book The 99% Invisible City; writer Shayla Lawson takes the lead role in her new collection of essays This Is Major, in which she celebrates Black womanhood; and Colin Hay, former frontman of Men at Work, performs a moving acoustic version of their hit song "Overkill."
53 minutes | Nov 26, 2021
Gary Shteyngart, Atsuko Okatsuka, and The Lowest Pair
Host Luke Burbank and Elena Passarello discuss the kindest things our friends have done; author Gary Shteyngart takes us into the world of fictionalized friendship in his latest book Our Country Friends, already lauded as the Great American Pandemic Novel; comedian Atsuko Okatska explains why getting married is more childlike than staying single; and indie folk duo The Lowest Pair perform their brand new tune "Mount Rainier."
54 minutes | Nov 19, 2021
Ijeoma Oluo, Jill Lepore, and The Bengsons
Host Luke Burbank and Elena Passarello make some small wishes for the future; Jill Lepore, historian and staffer at The New Yorker, tells us about the first American company to predict voter behavior through the use of computers; writer Ijeoma Oluo envisions a future free from racism and sexism in her book Mediocre: The Dangerous Legacy of White Male America; and indie folk duo The Bengsons spread a little hope with their viral hit "The Keep Going Song."
54 minutes | Nov 12, 2021
Tom Scharpling, Mohanad Elshieky, and MAITA
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello reminisce about the best moments of the last 18 months; writer and radio host Tom Scharpling (The Best Show) explains how his dislike for Billy Joel began as a teenage misadventure to Madison Square Garden; comedian Mohanad Elshieky describes why navigating checkpoints is better than talking to his Uber driver; and indie rock group MAITA perform "A Beast" from their album Best Wishes.
54 minutes | Nov 5, 2021
Rachel Bloom, Natalie Diaz, and Kevin Morby
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello discuss unresolved (minor) childhood grievances; Emmy Award-winning entertainer Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) makes the case against inside jokes in her new collection of essays I Want to Be Where the Normal People Are; Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Natalie Diaz explores the connection between poetry and basketball; and singer-songwriter Kevin Morby performs "Campfire" from his latest album Sundowner.
54 minutes | Oct 29, 2021
Nikki Sixx, Todd Haynes, and Melanie Charles
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello reveal their go-to karaoke songs; Mötley Crüe co-founder and bassist Nikki Sixx describes how his love of storytelling propelled him from a small town kid to a heavy metal icon; Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Todd Haynes (Far from Heaven, Carol) unpacks his first documentary feature The Velvet Underground, which looks at the lasting legacy of the 1960s experimental rock group; and genre-bending powerhouse Melanie Charles performs a "reimagining" of Marlena Shaw's "Woman of the Ghetto" from her new album Y’all Don’t (Really) Care About Black Women.
55 minutes | Oct 22, 2021
Cristina Costantini & Kareem Tabsch and Anaïs Mitchell
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello get into the spooky season and share some memorable Halloween costumes; filmmakers Cristina Costantini & Kareem Tabsch reveal the man behind the cape in their Netflix documentary Mucho Mucho Amor about famed Puerto Rican astrologer Walter Mercado; and singer-songwriter Anaïs Mitchell takes us to the underworld of Greek mythology to discuss her Tony Award-winning folk opera Hadestown, before performing one of its hit tracks "Wedding Song."
67 minutes | Oct 15, 2021
Nick Offerman, Phoebe Robinson, and Adia Victoria
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello chat about household rules we struggle to enforce; actor and humorist Nick Offerman discusses his newest book Where the Deer and the Antelope Play and how he squares his life in Los Angeles with his agrarian sensibilities; comedian and "Dope Queen" Phoebe Robinson explains why no one is allowed to sit on her bed in their outdoor clothes; and singer-songwriter Adia Victoria describes how working at an Amazon fulfillment center gave her the space to write her newest album A Southern Gothic, before performing one of its haunting tracks "My Oh My."
54 minutes | Oct 8, 2021
Demi Adejuyigbe, Jamie Loftus, and The War and Treaty
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello discover what topics listeners would discuss on their hypothetical podcasts; comedian Jamie Loftus unpacks her Lolita Podcast, which reexamines the controversial literary classic through a feminist lens; comedian and television writer Demi Adejuyigbe (The Good Place, The Amber Ruffin Show) explains why he feels the creative pressure every September 21st; and powerhouse duo The War and Treaty perform the deeply personal song "Five More Minutes" from their latest album Hearts Town.
54 minutes | Oct 1, 2021
Marlee Matlin, Melissa Febos, and Ida Mae
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share listener advice to their teenage selves; actor Marlee Matlin discusses her critically-acclaimed new film CODA and why she's advocating for Deaf actors to play Deaf roles; writer Melissa Febos opens up about her new collection of essays, Girlhood, which looks at the forces that shape the lives of girls and the adults they become; and British blues-folk duo Ida Mae performs the tender song "Raining for You" from their latest album Click Click Domino.
54 minutes | Sep 24, 2021
Mary Norris, Ryan O'Connell, and Dirty Revival
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share some favorite words submitted by listeners; grammar expert Mary Norris recounts her early days as a copy editor at The New Yorker and her foray into all things Greek; actor and television writer Ryan O’Connell explains how keeping his cerebral palsy a secret inspired his book and Netflix series Special; and soul-rock group Dirty Revival tear down the house with “Pipe Dreams.”
52 minutes | Sep 17, 2021
Mark Duplass & Natalie Morales, James Whiteside, and Dar Williams
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello share some special skills that listeners dream of having; filmmakers Mark Duplass & Natalie Morales open up about forming a friendship while making the film Language Lessons, which they shot entirely on webcams; ballet dancer James Whiteside chats about his new memoir Center Center and the need for more queerness in classical ballet; and singer-songwriter and environmental activist Dar Williams explains why she's not sweating the headlines, before serenading us with "Time, Be My Friend" from her new album I'll Meet You Here.
51 minutes | Sep 10, 2021
Maria Bamford, Shain Brenden, and Brandy Clark
Host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello consider the misconceptions our families have about us; comedian and actress Maria Bamford convinces us that anybody can create their own comedy special; stand-up comic Shain Brenden compares his former "single dad" status to a foreclosed home; and Grammy-nominated country singer-songwriter Brandy Clark spins her love of the film Jaws into the topical and heartfelt song "Bigger Boat."
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