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'Speaking Freely'™ show list, transcripts, videos

Text links indicate transcripts. Transcripts edited for clarity.

1st season

101: Robert Redford discusses how he has included the causes closest to his heart in his choices of acting and directing projects. VIDEO
102: Music/jazz critic and First Amendment activist Nat Hentoff discusses his 50 years in journalism. VIDEO
103: Janis Ian, who first met music censorship when she had a Top 10 hit at age 15, discusses her work and the importance of free expression. VIDEO
104: Harry Belafonte, a stage and film star, calypso singer and a tireless worker for civil rights, discusses how he has mixed his art and his activism. VIDEO
105: Chip Taylor, who wrote “Angel of the Morning” and “Wild Thing” — two of the biggest songs of the past 30 years — discusses his work. VIDEO
106: Author David Margolick discusses the book he wrote about “Strange Fruit” — perhaps the most-censored song of the 20th century. VIDEO
107: David Crosby, rock star and activist, discusses his life, his music and his causes. With co-author David Bender. VIDEO
108: Jane Alexander, a great actress of stage and film, discusses her career and her role as chair of the National Endowment for the Arts. VIDEO
109: “The Cradle Will Rock” is a 1930s-era play whose themes of free expression still resonate today. VIDEO
110: Tom Paxton, one of the most important songwriters of the last 40 years, talks about his work. VIDEO
111: Holly Hughes explains how she sued the government for the right to freely express herself on stage. VIDEO
112: Judy Blume, author of many popular books that often are banned by libraries, talks about her work, joined by author Carolivia Herron and bookseller Cammie Mannino. VIDEO
113: Ossie Davis, a playwright, actor and activist for more than 60 years, discusses his career. VIDEO

2nd season

201: Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Edward Albee talks about “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” and other powerful works. VIDEO
202: Tom Smothers discusses comedy, censorship and his legendary television show, “The Smothers Brothers.” VIDEO
203: Eartha Kitt, whom Orson Welles called “the most exciting woman on earth,” works to live up to that title. VIDEO
204: Judy Collins discusses her career in art and activism. VIDEO
205: Andres Serrano discusses his photographs, which deal with religion, death, sex and other basics of life. VIDEO
206: Paul Kantner recalls the glory days of Jefferson Airplane — the band he helped found — and the era of radical free expression in San Francisco. VIDEO
207: The History of Comic-Book Censorship examines the birth of the Comics Code Authority and how it affected artistic freedom. VIDEO
208: Bill T. Jones, legendary dancer and choreographer, discusses "dangerous" art and self-censorship. VIDEO
209: Bo Diddley, whose lyrics, music and guitar licks helped invent what we call rock ’n’ roll, talks about his work. VIDEO
210: David Halberstam, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, discusses the First Amendment as it applied to the civil rights movement. VIDEO
211: Chuck D, legendary hip-hop artist, discusses free expression and rap music. VIDEO
212: Phil Donahue, the man who redefined television talk shows, discusses the importance of letting all citizens speak. VIDEO
213: John Kay of the band Steppenwolf discusses his group’s bouts with censorship. VIDEO

3rd season

301: Academy Award-winning actress Susan Sarandon has not shied from controversy in her acting (“Dead Men Walking,” “Thelma & Louise”) or in her activism. She talks about her career, from “Rocky Horror Picture Show” to “Bull Durham,” and her activism, from arrests during her college days to the controversial 1993 Academy Awards appearance in which she brought public attention to the Haitian AIDS situation. VIDEO
302: Janeane Garofalo, outspoken actress (“The Larry Sanders Show,” “Saturday Night Live”) and comic, talks about political comedy — its risks and rewards — and her thoughts on everything from popular music to Joan Rivers. VIDEO
303: Singer-songwriter Charlie Daniels joins us for a free-wheeling discussion on America and politics, from flag-waving to flag-burning. He also plays highlights from his storied musical career, including the much-debated song, “This Ain’t No Rag, It’s a Flag.” VIDEO
304: Tony Award-winning actor Eli Wallach (“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” “The Magnificent Seven,” “Mr. Freeze” on TV’s “Batman”) reflects on his distinguished career on stage, screen and television, and how the creative community has been affected by forces as wide-ranging as McCarthyism and age bias. VIDEO
305: Entrepreneur Russell Simmons, founder of Def Jam Records, discusses the birth of hip-hop music and its impact in America as a political and cultural force, and his latest project bringing contemporary poetry to clubs and cable television. VIDEO
306: “South Park” creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker are joined by Larry Divney, president and CEO of Comedy Central, in a lively discussion of censorship, comedy and commercialism — direct from the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colo. VIDEO
307: Actor Tony Danza (“Taxi,” “Who’s the Boss”) joins us to talk about acting, civic activism and his emerging music career. VIDEO
308: Felix Cavaliere, who rocked generations as a founding member of the Rascals, talks about artistic freedom and performs some of his classic hits, including “Groovin',” “People Got To Be Free” and “It’s A Beautiful Morning.” VIDEO
309: Norman Lear, producer of such classic sitcoms as “All in the Family,” “Maude,” “The Jeffersons” and “Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman,” talks about obstacles to getting the programs on the air and the struggle between public interest and commercial restraints. VIDEO
310: Actor William Baldwin (“Backdraft,” “Flatliners”), president of the pro-arts performers’ group Creative Coalition, discusses his longtime interest in politics and activism and the coalition’s work on First Amendment issues, arts advocacy and education. VIDEO
311: Singer-songwriter Richie Havens recounts his experiences as the first performer on stage at Woodstock, the evolution of his well-known song “Freedom” and his relationship with the Beatles. VIDEO
312: Filmmaker Oliver Stone talks about “JFK,” “Nixon,” “Natural Born Killers” and “Born on the Fourth of July” and criticism of his work. VIDEO
313: Actor Jimmy Smits (“LA Law” and “NYPD Blue”) and Felix Sanchez, co-founders of the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts, discuss the underrepresentation of Hispanics in movies and on television and their efforts toward greater inclusion. VIDEO
314: Singer, songwriter and humorist Ray Stevens reflects on his musical career and performs many of his hits, including “Everything is Beautiful,” “Ahab the Arab” and “Mr. Businessman.” VIDEO
315: Alice Randall, author of the novel The Wind Done Gone, discusses the legal effort to suppress her book, a satirical work based on the Margaret Mitchell classic Gone With the Wind. VIDEO
316: A look inside the creation and inspiration for the Tony Award-winning Broadway play “Urinetown: The Musical,” featuring star John Cullum (“Northern Exposure,” “ER”), author Greg Kotis and composer Mark Hollmann. VIDEO
317-318: Comic, producer and director David Steinberg discusses his colorful career, including the role his sermon sketch played in getting “The Smothers Brothers” TV series pulled off the air in 1969 (Part 1, VIDEO). In Part 2, Steinberg continues his discussion, with fresh insights into the aftermath of “The Smothers Brothers” controversy, the monitoring of his work by the government and his friendship with Johnny Carson. VIDEO
319: In this special episode of “Speaking Freely,” taped on location at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colo., we pay tribute to the careers of George Carlin, the Smothers Brothers, Dick Gregory and Bill Maher. VIDEO
320: Journalist and author Carl Bernstein — best known for his coverage of Watergate — shares his thoughts on the evolution of reporting from the 1970s to today. He also recounts stories of his childhood when his family was monitored by the FBI. VIDEO
321: Actor Jeff Daniels (“Terms of Endearment,” “Gettysburg,” “Dumb and Dumber,” “Pleasantville”) has amassed a diverse list of comic and dramatic credits. He talks about his career, including his commitment to community theater. VIDEO
322: Music journalist and author Dave Marsh talks about music censorship — from the song “Louie, Louie” (about which he has written a book), to Tipper Gore and the music-labeling debate, to present-day controversies over rap music. VIDEO
323: Screenwriter Walter Bernstein recounts his experiences with the Hollywood blacklist. VIDEO
324: Filmmaker William Greaves talks about his groundbreaking documentary work, including biographical projects on Ida B. Wells and Ralph Bunche. VIDEO
325: Author and scholar bell hooks shares her strong views — as a woman, writer and African-American — on race, gender, class and free speech. VIDEO
326: Harry Belafonte (encore).
327: Eartha Kitt (encore).
328: Tony Award-winning playwright and screenwriter Terrence McNally (“Frankie and Johnny,” “Ragtime,” “Kiss of the Spiderwoman”) discusses his many works, as well as the protests and death threats surrounding his play “Corpus Christi.” VIDEO
329: Comic actor Michael Richards talks about his days as “Kramer” on “Seinfeld,” his comic heroes and his working relationship with comedian Andy Kaufman. VIDEO
330: Playwright and screenwriter Arthur Laurents discusses his many works, including “Gypsy,” “West Side Story,” “The Turning Point” and “The Way We Were.” VIDEO
331: Stand-up comics and writers Louis CK and Steve Marmel participate in a lively discussion of comedy and its different outlets, from clubs to talk shows to movies — and what you can joke about today in America. VIDEO
332: Comics Michelle Krusiec and Alonzo Bodden join us from the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen, Colo., to discuss their breakthroughs in comedy and acting and how ethnic stereotypes have both helped and hurt them. VIDEO

4th season

401, 416: Actor-director-writer Tim Robbins pulls no punches, from “Dead Man Walking” to his anti-war stance and a collision with baseball’s Hall of Fame. Part 1, VIDEO / Part 2, VIDEO
402: Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Kim Carnes (“Bette Davis Eyes” and “Don’t Fall In Love With A Dreamer”) shares her stories and her music. VIDEO
403: Kevin Smith, a filmmaker for a new generation, talks about his irreverent and groundbreaking work, from “Clerks” to “Dogma.” VIDEO
404-405: The legendary Art Garfunkel continues to make moving music. Part 1 (VIDEO) covers the words, music and poetry of this music great. Part 2 (VIDEO) continues the discussion with Garfunkel and his two new musical collaborators, Maia Sharp and Buddy Mondlock.
406: As newsman Lou Grant, Ed Asner created one of the television’s most memorable characters – but his outspoken political views helped end "The Lou Grant Show." VIDEO
407: Musician/composer Arturo Sandoval talks about his life as a world-class musician and his flight to freedom from Cuba to America. VIDEO
408: Comedian/actress Julia Sweeney, known for her characters on “Saturday Night Live” and for her poignant one-woman show, “God Said 'Ha!',” discusses comedy and a new solo performance that touches on adoption, dating, motherhood and work. VIDEO
409: Rodney Crowell offers what critics have called “a distinctly American roots music sound” as one of the most respected singers and songwriters in music today. VIDEO
410: Tony Award-winning composer Marc Shaiman talks about how to write music for movies and the stage — and the creative process behind his hit musical, “Hairspray.” VIDEO
411: Comedian Lewis Black, a passionate proponent of free speech both on and off the stage, offers his unique view of humor, politics and society. VIDEO
412: Critically praised singer-songwriter Amy Rigby brings her decidedly different perspective to her music. VIDEO
413-414: John Mellencamp is still rocking – and still rolling, with his new, critically acclaimed CD, “Trouble No More,” an exploration of blues and folk music that includes “To Washington,” a passionately anti-war song. In the second of a two-part conversation, Mellencamp talks about his lengthy career and what interests him in music and art. Part 1 (VIDEO) / Part 2 (VIDEO)
415: Author and former major league pitcher Jim Bouton (Ball Four) changed the face of sports journalism and has given generations of readers and baseball fans an insider’s look at the sport. VIDEO
417: Yoko Ono, musician, avant garde artist in art, film and theatre, and peace activist, talks about her career and her partnership with John Lennon. VIDEO
418: Felix Cavaliere (encore).
419: Charlie Daniels (encore).
420: Jimmy Smits and Felix Sanchez (encore).
421: Oliver Stone (encore).
422: Richard Belzer discusses his on-screen work as one of television’s longest-running policemen, “Detective Munsch,” and his real-life passion as a conspiracy theorist. VIDEO
423-424: David Steinberg parts 1 and 2 (encore).
425: From “Romeo’s Tune” to his recent tribute to Jimmie Rodgers, singer/songwriter Steve Forbert offers a unique voice and perspective. VIDEO
426: “Cowboy” Jack Clement, legendary singer/songwriter who has worked with — and sometimes discovered — some of the greats of country and rock music, talks about his extraordinary career and the artists he's known. VIDEO
427: Texas singer/songwriter Rosie Flores celebrates the spirit of rock and rockabilly with a powerful voice and a guitar to match. VIDEO
428: Harvey Pekar and Joyce Brabner, groundbreaking comic-book creators, talk about their innovative work and "American Splendor," the award-winning film based on their lives. VIDEO
429: Jackie DeShannon discusses her career as one of music's first female singer/songwriters. VIDEO
430: Harry Shearer, comedy writer and performer ("Spinal Tap," "Saturday Night Live") joins writer Tom Leopold ("Seinfeld") to talk about comedy, satire and their new play about J. Edgar Hoover. VIDEO
431: One of America's most critically acclaimed singer/songwriters, Steve Earle, talks about the death penalty, his most controversial song and free speech in America. VIDEO
432: Black History Month special: Features interviews with Harry Belafonte, Ossie Davis, David Halberstam and others about the civil rights movement and its impact on America. VIDEO
433: John Sebastian, one of the most recognizable voices of the '60s and '70s, has a career that spans the legendary rock group The Lovin’ Spoonful ("Do You Believe in Magic," "Summer In the City," "Nashville Cats,") and work as a songwriter, solo artist and children’s book author. VIDEO
434: Bob Odenkirk and David Cross, two of America’s most innovative comics and writers, talk about their ground-breaking television production, “Mr. Show.” VIDEO
435: Kris Kristofferson, recipient of the 2003 “Spirit of Americana” Free Speech Award, in Part 1 of a two-part conversation, talks about his extraordinary career, from his beginnings as a Nashville songwriter to fame as both musical performer and actor. VIDEO
436: Gretchen Peters sings and discusses her controversial song, "Independence Day," and other songwriting issues. VIDEO
437: Tom Morello, guitarist with "Rage Against the Machine" and "Audioslave," talks about the potent mixture of rock and politics. VIDEO
438: Marcus Hummon, a versatile playwright, singer and songwriter, talks about a career that has led him to both the Nashville stage and recording studios. VIDEO
439: Actor Richard Masur, whose face you know from dozens of television and movie productions and who is a former president of the Screen Actors Guild, talks about the entertainment industry and free expression. VIDEO
440: A free spirit and compelling songwriter, Marshall Chapman discusses her new book, Goodbye, Little Rock and Roller. VIDEO
441: The Chambers Brothers wrote and recorded “Time Has Come Today” and other ground-breaking music during the turbulent ‘60s. Lead singer Lester Chambers talks about the roots and legacy of this innovative American band. VIDEO
442: A British folk singer in the tradition of Woody Guthrie, Billy Bragg sings and talks about songwriting, social change and free expression in both the U.S. and Great Britain. VIDEO
443: Arthur Laurents (encore).
444: Jimmy Smits and Felix Sánchez (encore).

5th season

501: Pat Mitchell, president and CEO of PBS, talks about the place of public broadcasting in the turbulent world of American television, and why Americans may need — and want — PBS more than ever. VIDEO
502: Grammy and Emmy award-winner Kenny Loggins (“House at Pooh Corner,” “What a Fool Believes”) talks about his career as a performer, songwriter and success at movie soundtracks, including “Top Gun,” “Footloose” and “Caddyshack." VIDEO
503: Film producer and author Christine Vachon, recipient of the “Freedom in Film Award,” discusses — as part of the 2004 Nashville Film Festival — her ground-breaking role in bringing to the screen independent films that include "Poison," Swoon," "Go Fish" and "Boys Don't Cry." VIDEO
504-505: Legendary singer/songwriter John Prine talks about his Grammy Award-winning career and his recent induction into the Nashville Songwriters' Hall of Fame, in Part 1 (VIDEO) of a conversation during the 2004 Tin Pan South Festival. In Part 2 (VIDEO), John Prine continues his conversation about his career.
506: Comedian and actor Yakov Smirnoff recounts his career from comedian in the Soviet Union to theaters (from Broadway to Branson, Mo.), and his one-man touring show, "As Long As We Both Shall Laugh.” VIDEO
507: Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Rickie Lee Jones talks about what has influenced her remarkable career, her hits ("Chuck E's in Love" and "Easy Money"), as well as her concerns that democracy is threatened in today's world — and her efforts in response. VIDEO
508: Little Richard, one of the architects of rock ‘n’ roll, may best be known for his flamboyant presence on stage and screen — but there’s another side to his life that’s focused on issues of religion and matters of faith. VIDEO
509: Two-time Grammy winner Kathy Mattea ("Where've You Been?" and "Eighteen Wheels and a Dozen Roses") has a career that spans her being named “CMA Female Vocalist of the Year” to being known as "Nashville's conscience on AIDS." VIDEO
510: Larry Flynt, owner and publisher of Hustler magazine, self-described pornographer and pundit, gives his views about freedom, the First Amendment and American attitudes. VIDEO
511: Emmylou Harris is a singer/songwriter with multiple Grammy awards (11 to date) and eight gold albums. While she’s best known for her music and collaborations with artists from Dolly Parton to Roy Orbison to Linda Ronstadt to Neil Young, she also campaigns for causes that range from animal rights to eliminating land mines throughout the world. VIDEO
512: George Schlatter, prolific TV producer, director and writer ("Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In,") — also a pioneer in "reality television" and a guiding force in variety specials — talks about where television entertainment has been — and where it’s headed. VIDEO
513: Darryl Worley, the singer/songwriter who captured the country music world’s heart with his hit "Have You Forgotten?,” talks about his life-changing USO tour of Afghanistan and his ongoing focus on support for American troops. VIDEO
514: Roger McGuinn, the extraordinary frontman for the Byrds, talks about a career that influenced many from the Beatles to Tom Petty; his landmark debut with the single "Mr. Tambourine Man," and his latest career — as a folk musician. VIDEO
516: James Earl Jones — The "voice" of several generations, from Broadway stage to "Star Wars," discusses his life as an actor and the challenges he overcame. VIDEO
517: Billy Corgan — The former leader of "Smashing Pumpkins," Billy Corgan talks about his careers as singer, songwriter and now, poet and author. VIDEO
302: Janeane Garofalo (encore)
423: David Steinberg - Part 1 (encore)
424: David Steinberg - Part 2 (encore)
301: Susan Sarandon (encore)
404: Art Garfunkel - Part 1 (encore)
405: Art Garfunkel - Part 2 (encore)
502: Kenny Loggins (encore)
503: Christine Vachon (encore)
504: John Prine - Part 1 (encore)
505: John Prine - Part 2 (encore)
506: Yakov Smirnoff (encore)
509: Kathy Mattea (encore)
513: Darryl Worley (encore)
113: Ossie Davis (encore)
216: Jill Sobule (encore)
312: Oliver Stone (encore)
334: Robert Redford (encore)
432: Black History Month compilation (encore)
211: Chuck D (encore)
332: Michelle Krusiec & Alonzo Bodden (encore)
501: Pat Mitchell (encore)
307: Tony Danza (encore)
320: Carl Bernstein (encore)
403: Kevin Smith (encore)
406: Ed Asner (encore)
408: Julia Sweeney (encore)
444: Jimmy Smits & Felix Sanchéz (encore)
409: Rodney Crowell (encore)
112: Judy Blume (encore)
410: Marc Shaiman (encore)
417: Yoko Ono (encore)
507: Rickie Lee Jones (encore)
512: George Schlatter (encore)
303: Charlie Daniels (encore)
335: Tom Smothers (encore)
440: Marshall Chapman (encore)
508: Little Richard (encore)
301: Susan Sarandon (encore)

Additional transcripts

Elizabeth Catlett discusses her career as a sculptor, painter and printmaker.
Songwriter Jill Sobule sings and discusses some of her controversial songs. VIDEO
Artist Hans Haacke talks about his work, which has often dared to "bite the hand that feeds it."
Chris Finan of the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression talks about book censorship.
Marjorie Heins, author of Not In Front of the Children: Indecency, Censorship, and Innocence of Youth, talks about censorship.
Former chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, Bill Ivey, talks about the role of art in free society.
Artist Renee Cox and William Donohue, of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, talk about Cox's controversial work Yo Mama's Last Supper.
Dr. William Holda, president of Kilgore College in Texas, talks about his decision to allow students to stage “Angels in America.”
Professor Susan Ford Wiltshire, a professor of classics at Vanderbilt University, talks about the origins of the First Amendment.
Jen Miller and Robert Pritchard of Dance Liberation Front talk about their organization.
Jef Bourgeau, the director of the Museum of New Art in Pontiac, Mich., talks about his battle to protect sometimes controversial art.
Sonny Ochs, sister of late 1960s songwriter Phil Ochs, talks about the lessons of her brother's life and his music.
Don Henry, Nanci Griffith and Sonny Curtis talk about the Tin Pan South Festival.


'Speaking Freely'™

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Last system update: Friday, April 23, 2010 | 14:12:52
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