Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso

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Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso is a weekly series of intimate conversations with artists, activists, and politicians. Where people sound like people. Hosted by Sam Fragoso. New episodes every Sunday.

Most Recent Episode

Performer Kumail Nanjiani: A New Act

Today, we’re joined by actor, writer, and comedian, Kumail Nanjiani! We discuss his new series, Welcome to Chippendales, playing real-life entrepreneur Steve Banerjee (4:39), his fascination with American culture growing…

Actor Jonathan Majors: ‘Everything Happens To Me’

To close the holiday weekend, we sit with actor Jonathan Majors! At the top, we discuss how he embodied real-life US Navy pilot Jesse Brown in the new film “Devotion”…

An Afternoon at Judd Apatow’s Office

Today, a visit to the office of legendary director and producer Judd Apatow! We talk about his upbringing in Long Island (5:20), conducting interviews with Jerry Seinfeld and Steve Allen…

Journalist Kara Swisher Believes in the Future

Today we’re joined by journalist and podcast host, Kara Swisher. At the top, we unpack the midterms (4:22), the state of the GOP (7:28), and the role of social media…

Writer George Saunders, Moment by Moment

Today, George Saunders returns! We discuss Liberation Day, his first short-story collection in nine years (3:40), the influence of Chekhov and Gogol (4:56), and a timely passage on democracy from “Love…

The Homecoming of Director James Gray

Today, director James Gray is back! We start by diving into the aftermath of Ad Astra (7:25), returning home to Queens with Armageddon Time (12:00) and the historical context of…

Comedian Nick Kroll is Going Through Changes

Today, we’re joined by comedian Nick Kroll! To begin, we dive into the origin of Little Big Boy, his first stand-up special in ten years (4:40), his pivot toward more…

The Transformation of Actor Eddie Redmayne

Today we’re joined by Oscar-winning actor, Eddie Redmayne! We discuss how he embodied serial killer Charles Cullen in The Good Nurse (8:12), playing opposite Jessica Chastain (9:35), and the research…

How Congresswoman Cori Bush Reimagines Politics

Today we’re joined by Congresswoman Cori Bush! Back in 2020, Bush made history as the first Black woman elected to represent Missouri’s First Congressional District. With the upcoming midterms, we…

Back to School with Quinta Brunson (‘Abbott Elementary’)

Today we’re joined by “Abbott Elementary” creator and star, Quinta Brunson! On the heels of its two historic wins at this year’s Emmys, we discuss the guiding principles behind its…

Writer Sandra Cisneros is a ‘Woman Without Shame’

Today we’re joined by beloved author Sandra Cisneros! We discuss her first poetry collection in 28 years, Woman Without Shame (4:40), why she chooses to write ‘dangerous’ pieces (6:18), and…

Understanding the Midterms with Reporter Astead Herndon (The New York Times)

With the US midterms approaching, we’re joined by New York Times political reporter and host of The Run-Up, Astead Herndon. We start by examining this “relentlessly disorienting time” in America…

Comedian Billy Eichner, Street to Screen

Today we’re joined by Billy Eichner! We discuss the release of his groundbreaking rom-com Bros (4:22), how the film drew inspiration from James L. Brooks’ Broadcast News (6:30), and the power of working with…

Storytelling with ‘Atlanta’ Director Hiro Murai

Today, we’re joined by director Hiro Murai! With the return of Atlanta (5:06), we discuss the homecoming of this final season (7:14), Murai’s connection to the character Earn (10:04), the…

The Aftermath of 9/11

Last fall, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we turned to the work of photographer Joel Meyerowitz. In the aftermath of that fateful day, Joel spent nine months at…

The Airline Workers’ Movement is Taking Off

This Labor Day weekend we’re joined by flight attendant and AFA President Sara Nelson! To begin, we discuss the challenge of summer air travel (6:14), the union’s fight against stock…

‘Dreaming Back’ with Novelist Joyce Carol Oates

Today, we head to Princeton, New Jersey to sit with legendary writer Joyce Carol Oates. We begin with her daily routine, from writing to revision (6:34), the real-life events that…

Abbi Jacobson: A League of Her Own

Today we’re joined by Abbi Jacobson! We begin with her new series, A League of Their Own (5:35), the legacy of the 1992 film (10:35), her earliest comedic influences (15:05),…

A New Era of Musician Joey Bada$$

Musician Joey Bada$$ joins us today! With the release of his new album, “2000”, we discuss the evolution of his songwriting (5:07), the direction of the new record (8:59), and…

Coming of Age with Lena Dunham

Today we’re joined by Lena Dunham! We start by discussing her new film, Sharp Stick (6:20), the 1970s cinema that inspired it (9:50), and how it offers a “three-way mirror”…

Ethan Hawke, Here and Then

Ethan Hawke has spent three decades telling stories. His latest project, The Last Movie Stars, honors two legends that inspired him to do so: Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward. Today,…

At Home with Comedian John Early

Today, we’re joined by comedian John Early! We begin with his excellent new special, Would It Kill You to Laugh? (6:51) and its surprising tenderness (10:03), before revisiting a satirical…

Jenny Slate in 2022

Five years ago, Jenny and Sam sat for a special conversation. They promised to reconvene in 2020 (which they did). To celebrate the release of Marcel the Shell with Shoes…

Through the Woods with Nick Offerman

This holiday weekend, we’re revisiting one of our favorite talks with actor, author, and woodworker Nick Offerman. We begin with his new book, Where the Deer and the Antelope Play:…

Margo Jefferson: We Must ‘Go On’

Today, we sit with author and cultural critic Margo Jefferson. We begin with her new book, Constructing a Nervous System (6:54), an early Ella Fitzgerald memory (11:20), and the said…

The Supreme Court Conversation We’re Not Having

Last month, a leaked draft opinion offered a repudiation of a 1973 decision which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights. The historic leak was followed by both pro-choice and…

David Sedaris: A Life On and Off the Page

This week we’re joined by beloved author David Sedaris! We begin with the timely opening essay from his latest collection, Happy-Go-Lucky (4:05). Then, David describes growing up in Raleigh, North…

Actor Jon Bernthal: Leading Man

This week we’re joined by actor Jon Bernthal! To begin, we discuss his latest performance on HBO’s We Own This City (6:00), policing and gun culture in America (9:15), growing…

Performer Meg Stalter Heals Through Comedy

This week we are joined by comedian Meg Stalter! With season two of Hacks, we talk about her role as Kayla the assistant (5:50), a formative experience in a middle…

What Will It Take To Change? (with Stacey Abrams)

To start, a reflection on the week that was. Then, we return to our conversation with Stacey Abrams. She won her Gubernatorial primary this week in Georgia, where she hopes…

Author Jennifer Egan: Writing Through Time

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jennifer Egan (“A Visit from the Goon Squad”) joins us this week. She describes the structural pulse of her new novel (4:00), why she’s drawn to nonlinear…

Pedro Pascal: A Life of Dreaming

This week we sit with actor Pedro Pascal! We begin with the release of his new film, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent (5:02), working with childhood idol Nicolas Cage…

Mother’s Day with Minnie Driver

This Mother’s Day, a special talk with actor Minnie Driver. On the heels of her debut essay collection Managing Expectations, she discusses the role of luck (3:40), her bifurcated upbringing…

Bill Hader Finds His Story

This week, legendary actor and comedian Bill Hader! We discuss the return of Barry (4:57), the thematic evolution of the series (7:02), and how it draws from films like Taxi…

Poet Rupi Kaur is Here to Stay

This week, our guest is poet Rupi Kaur. Ahead of her international tour (4:44), we sat to discuss her childhood in Canada (13:05), how she processes trauma through writing (22:13),…

Love Songs with Syd (The Internet, Odd Future)

This week we’re joined by musician and founding member of The Internet, Syd! With the release of her new solo record, Broken Hearts Club (5:00), we discuss the origin of…

Let’s Talk About Sex (At the Movies)

Film historian Karina Longworth is the host of You Must Remember This, a podcast exploring the forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century. This week she joins us to discuss her new…

Anita Hill is Getting Even. We Believe Her.

This week we’re joined by Professor Anita Hill. She’s an author, lawyer, and host of the new podcast, Getting Even with Anita Hill. We begin by discussing her excellent new program…

Oscar Sunday with Questlove

To celebrate Oscar Sunday, we’re returning to our talk with legendary bandleader of The Roots and director of Summer of Soul, Questlove!We discuss his winding road to making the documentary:…

Marina Abramović: The Artist is Present

Marina Abramović is a pioneer in the field of performance art, using her body as both the subject and the medium. This week, we sit with the legendary performer in…

The Pieces of David Byrne

This week we head to New York City to sit with the legendary David Byrne (Talking Heads). We discuss how he’s processed the pandemic (7:14), finding creativity in unlikely places…

Author Margaret Atwood’s Burning Questions

Today we are joined by legendary writer Margaret Atwood! We begin with her new collection of essays, Burning Questions (4:18), which wrestle with catastrophe (4:59), growing up in the wilderness…

Stacey Abrams’ Guide to Preserving Democracy

This week, we’re in conversation with author, voting rights activist, and gubernatorial candidate for the state of Georgia: Stacey Abrams. To begin, we talk about the systemic challenges that small…

W. Kamau Bell: How Do We Talk About Cosby?

Comedian and documentary host W. Kamau Bell has built a career out of having difficult conversations. Today, he returns to the show with his latest project, the four-part docuseries We…

A Texas Principal Said Black Lives Matter. His Community Didn’t Agree.

On this special episode, educator Dr. James Whitfield tells his remarkable story. Whitfield made headlines recently after being fired as Principal of Colleyville Heritage High School in Texas. The reason?…

How Glory Edim (Well-Read Black Girl) Gives Space

Glory Edim, founder of Well-Read Black Girl, joins us today for a special episode! In 2015, she founded the Brooklyn-based book club and online community. Two years later, a literary…

A Tea with Cate Blanchett

This week, the legendary Cate Blanchett joins us. To start, we unpack her femme fatale turn in Nightmare Alley (6:06), the way director Guillermo del Toro wrestles with truth and…

Questlove: A Celebration of Soul

This week we sit with legendary bandleader of The Roots, Questlove! On the heels of his directorial debut, Summer of Soul, we discuss his winding road to making the documentary: from…

Actor Tessa Thompson is Boundless

This week we’re joined by actor and producer Tessa Thompson! To begin, we talk about Thompson’s entry point into her new film Passing (7:56), a pivotal scene starring Bill Camp…

Ezra Klein (The New York Times) On The Year Ahead

Ezra Klein is a columnist for The New York Times, the host of The Ezra Klein Show, and the author of Why We’re Polarized. He joins us this week to unpack…

Alana Haim: 13 Going on 30

This week we sit with musician Alana Haim, star of the film from director Paul Thomas Anderson, Licorice Pizza. Making her acting debut, Alana shares the serendipitous backstory that led…

Activist Brittany Packnett Cunningham: How Did We Get Here?

This week one year ago, a mob of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol seeking to overturn the 2020 presidential election. For some perspective on the other side of this moment,…

Sunday on the Podcast with George Saunders

As we begin the new year, we turn to writer George Saunders. He first joined us upon the release of his latest book, A Swim in a Pond in the Rain.…

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