Bullseye with Jesse Thorn
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.)

[r] Keegan-Michael Key talks to Jesse Thorn about creating characters for his sketch show Key and Peele. Plus, Tituss Burgess from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, tells about the time he performed live at the Tony Awards with a malfunctioning microphone.

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Danny McBride is comedic writer and actor who started his career starring in the cult classic comedy, The Foot Fist Way. Although the film went to Sundance and was a modest success, McBride went back to North Virginia to work as a substitute teacher. Danny and frequent collaborator Jody Hill began creating the series Eastbound & Down, which would jumpstart McBride’s career and make him a film and television star.

He has appeared in numerous comedy films, such as Tropic Thunder, 30 Minutes or Less, and Observe and Report. McBride is perhaps best known for writing and starring in the HBO series Eastbound & Down, where he plays disgraced MLB player, Kenny Powers.

McBride sat down with Jesse to talk about about working with Jody Hill, writing for Eastbound and Down, and dealing with people who idolize Kenny Powers just a little too much.

Danny McBride’s new show is called Vice Principals.

Jazz bassist Miroslav Vitouš explains how working with Weather Report on the composition Morning Lake is an experience he will never forget.

Miroslav Vitouš’s new album is called Music of Weather Report.

Jesse talks about the film Hunt for the Wilderpeople and why calling it “twee” is actually a compliment.

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Though most people find it difficult to find anything funny about depression and anxiety, comedian Aparna Nancherla. has used her own struggles with mood disorders to inspire her comedy. A rising star in the comedy world, Nancherla bravely reveals her struggles with depression in a way that makes the experience both relatable and hilarious.

Clams Casino joined Jesse to talk about the influences that lead to his unique sound, and some of the ways he paid his dues coming up in the world of hip-hop production. They also discuss his new album, 32 Levels, and how he developed his relationship with rapper Lil’ B. The two of them have long been collaborators, including on the new album, but didn’t really get to know each other until making of the new record. Clams Casino’s new album is called 32 Levels.

Jesse checks in on the classic movie you should see before going swimming this summer.

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Though she didn’t earn a degree in the sciences, author Mary Roach has a knack for writing about them with insight and wit. Whether she’s describing what happens to the body after death or the many aspects of human sexuality, Roach makes her topics accessible and fun.

Roach has authored half a dozen books including: Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers, Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife and Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, as well as articles for magazines including Vogue, GQ, and National Geographic.

Mary Roach sat down with Jesse about whether shark repellant actually exists, life on submarines and how leaches inspired her to write a book on military science, Grunt.

William Bell is a soul singer and songwriter whose distinctive sound is forever associated with the legendary Stax Records. Along with with performers like Otis Redding, Sam and Duke, Isaac Hayes and the Staple Singers, Bell helped create music that continues to entertain and inspire.

He is famous for his hit songs including  You Don’t Miss Your Water, Private Number, A Tribute to the King and Everybody Loves a Winner. He also co-wrote the classic song, Born Under a Bad Sign which was originally performed by Albert King and later covered by Jimi Hendrix, Etta James, Cream and even Homer Simpson.

William Bell joined Jesse to talk about what it was like beginning his musical career while still a teenager, how he returned to his career after being drafted and his new album out on Stax Records, This is Where I Live.

Jesse shares why Tanya Tucker’s voice and classic song, What's Your Mama's Name manages to move him every time he hears it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jesse Thorn sits down with comic book author and the designer of Netflix’s Bojack Horseman, Lisa Hanawalt.  He also talks to comic Wyatt Cenac about his upcoming stand up series, Night Train.

 

 

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This week Jesse interviews Rachel Bloom,the star and co-creator the CW show Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.  Also, Esperanza Spalding tells us about the song that changed her life.

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[r] Jesse Thorn talks with John C. Reilly about Reilly's open-hearted and blustery comic creation, Dr. Steve Brule. Reilly shares stories from the summer of fun he had working on the movie Boogie Nights, and outlines the duties of an actor.

Check it Out with Dr Steve Brule is currently airing on Adult Swim. Reilly's new movie The Lobster is in theatres now.

Later, Las Vegas born singer-songwriter Shamir joins us to explain how he constructed a remarkable creative identity in a city known for producing more entertainers than artist; how his love for country music inspired him, and how his mother's proclivity for earth magic isn't quite his thing.

Shamir's latest album is called Ratchet.

Plus Jesse recommends Steven Soderbergh's The Limey, a revenge movie that's really about the way we all fight with our own past.

 

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Jesse Thorn talks to Rashida Jones, from Parks and Recreation, The Office and Angie Tribeca - which just returned for its second season.

Later Lawrence Weschler and Ramiro Gomez stop by the Bullseye studio to discuss their new art book, Domestic Scenes: The Art of Ramiro Gomez.

Plus Jesse explores the fun, artistry and dark irony of the of the classic noir film, The Third Man starring Orson Welles and Joseph Cotton.

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Jesse Thorn talks to comedian and Fresh Off the Boat writer Ali Wong, who recorded her new comedy special Baby Cobra, while seven and a half months pregnant. He also sits down with Boogaloo legend Joe Bataan to talk about breaking into the music industry, why he dropped out of it for a while and how he came back with a performance on one of the very first rap songs, back in 1979. Joe Bataan is one of the subjects of a new documentary, We Like it Like That: The Story of Latin Boogaloo. Plus Jesse highlights an artist with one of the sweetest voices and some of the most beautiful melodies in music right now - Chance the Rapper.

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[r] Jesse Thorn talks to DJ Quik - one of the most prolific figures in West Coast hip hop. They’ll talk about why a leaked record and a couple of guns made Quik realize he needed a new circle of friends, why he never wants to stop making pretty beats for his records and his inspiration for his awesome, awesome hairstyles over the years. Plus comedy from Michael Ian Black and Jesse explains his love for the airplane gadget catalogue parody, SkyMaul.

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