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The Turnaround with Jesse Thorn


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 generationRead more

Popular episodes

The Turnaround with Dick Cavett

Jan 9 • 01:03:39

In this special, bonus episode of The Turnaround, Jesse speaks to the legendary Dick Cavett, whose eponymous The Dick Cavett Show debuted nearly fifty years ago. Throughout his storied career, Cavett distinguished himself as the consummate interviewer, and has played host to the most interesting and compelling figures of his era--Salvador Dali, Jimi Hendrix, Betty Davis, G...

Terry Gross

Aug 10 • 01:20:16

On the last episode of The Turnaround, Jesse talks to his all-time interviewing hero Terry Gross! For more than 30 years Terry's hosted Fresh Air from WHYY Philadelphia, conducting some of the most insightful, fascinating conversations you'll likely ever hear. Being a radio interviewer came somewhat naturally to Terry. She tells Jesse she prefers the medium to television, ...

Werner Herzog

Aug 8 • 40:12

Today Jesse talks to the legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog, responsible for films like Grizzly Man, Cave of Forgotten Dreams and Lo and Behold. Werner has had a career spanning more than five decades and dozens of awards, working both in documentaries and narrative films. He chooses his interview subjects carefully, often times based on whether or not he thinks that they c...

Ray Suarez

Aug 3 • 01:11:58

Today's guest is Ray Suarez, a broadcast journalist and anchor who's had pretty much every job in the newsroom. He was a senior correspondent for PBS NewsHour, hosted NPR's Talk of the Nation for almost seven years, and most recently he had a show on Al Jazeera America called Inside Story. Somehow he also found the time to write a few well-received books, and he's now a vi...

Katie Couric

Jul 31 • 52:46

America's Sweetheart meets America's Radio Sweetheart! Katie Couric visits Jesse Thorn on today's episode of The Turnaround. Name a famous person, and she's probably talked with them at some point in her illustrious career as a host and reporter: everyone from prime ministers, to superstar athletes, to actresses. But her skill as an interviewer also extends to her conversa...

Louis Theroux

Jul 28 • 55:54

Today Jesse is visited by Louis Theroux, a British documentarian and BBC presenter. Much of Louis' career has been spent covering various subcultures. These groups have been as innocuous as UFO hunters or as extreme as Neo-Nazi groups and anti-gay religious sects like the Westboro Baptist Church. Louis talks to Jesse about how his interviews often bring him into very intim...

Reggie Ossé (Combat Jack)

Jul 24 • 01:08:54

Today's guest is Reggie Ossé, also known as Combat Jack. He's the host of The Combat Jack Show, one of the best hip-hop podcasts around. On the show, Reggie chops it up with a who's who of the rap world, not only about music, but about race, politics, and a whole lot more. Reggie says he kind of fell into interviewing for a living. He's actually a lawyer by training and us...

Anna Sale

Jul 20 • 01:20:40

Joining us this week is Anna Sale, host of WNYC Studio's, Death, Sex & Money. As she puts it, her show is about "the things we think about a lot, and need to talk about more." Anna sits down with celebrities like Kevin Bacon or Mahershala Ali, but more often than not she's talking to someone that you've never heard of. It's an intimate show if there ever was one, and Anna ...

Jerry Springer

Jul 18 • 01:03:35

The one and only Jerry Springer visits The Turnaround this week! Whatever you think you know about his long-running daytime talk show Jerry Springer is probably correct, and Jerry would likely agree with you. But as he explains to Jesse, he believes his show has a valuable role to play in the lives of his guests -- especially by giving them a voice. Now in his 26th season ...

Errol Morris

Jul 14 • 01:02:22

This week, Jesse sits down with critically acclaimed and Academy Award winning documentarian Errol Morris. Errol and Jesse talk about how he got into interviewing, and in particular his time spent interviewing mass murderers, before he was a documentary filmmaker. Errol tells Jesse about the profound impact that Truman Capote had upon his career. They also discuss Errol's ...

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