Here's The Thing with Alec Baldwin
Here's The Thing with Alec Baldwin
Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin takes listeners into the lives of artists, policy makers and performers. Alec sidesteps the predictable by going inside the dressing rooms, apartments, and offices of people we want to understand better: Ira Glass, Lena Dunham, David Letterman, Barbara Streisand, Tom Yorke, Chris Rock and others. Hear what happens when an inveterate guest becomes a host.
The Triumph of Merry Clayton
(Recorded October 6, 2021) Even if you don’t know the name Merry Clayton, you know her voice. It’s the one belting on The Rolling Stones’ Gimme Shelter and it is remarkable - you can actually hear Mick Jagger hooting and hollering in the background after Clayton sings the hook. Clayton started providing backing vocals for Bobby Darin as a teenager and went on to record with Ray Charles, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Carole King, Neil Young, and the list goes on and on. Her story is featured in the 2013 documentary 20 Feet From Stardom, which celebrated the often-overlooked contributions of backup singers to popular songs and won the Oscar for Best Documentary. Following a near-fatal car accident, Clayton has returned to release her first solo album in more than 25 years, Beautiful Scars.  This episode introduces guest host Talia Schlanger, who will occasionally be featured on Here’s the Thing. Schlanger is a performer, musician, and broadcaster. She has interviewed hundreds of artists as the former host of the NPR-distributed program World Cafe and throughout her career at CBC.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 27, 2021
50 min
Marilu Henner Chooses Joy
(Recorded September 2021) Actress Marilu Henner is known for a lot of things, from her groundbreaking role as Elaine Nardo on Taxi to her New York Times bestselling books on health and wellness to her amazing, nearly one-of-a-kind memory. But what shines through in every story, joke, and answer she gives Alec is her positivity and joy. Henner is someone who, at every turn, has chosen her happiness, and she’s eager to share her secrets for creating an optimistic outlook with everyone.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 20, 2021
53 min
Nicolas Niarchos Exposes the Cobalt Gold Rush
(Recorded October 4, 2021) Journalist Nicolas Niarchos may be the grandson of a famous Greek shipping magnate, but he can be found covering challenging and dangerous subjects like conflicts, minerals, and migration in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He is a reporter at large at The New Yorker and a contributor to TIME, The Guardian, The New York Times and The Nation. Niarchos speaks with Alec about his upbringing, his journalistic path and his reporting in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which exposes exploitation in the cobalt mining industry - and the importance of this crucial element in our global supply chain.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 13, 2021
48 min
Tony Palmer Made the Original Behind the Music
(Recorded in June 2021) Filmmaker Tony Palmer’s more than 100 documentaries have featured everyone from Cream to Stravinsky; Jimi Hendrix to Yehudi Menuhin; Leonard Cohen to Richard Wagner. He collaborated with Frank Zappa on the surreal cult-classic 200 Motels and with his friend, John Lennon on All You Need is Love, a multipart series on the early days of rock n roll. He’s made three films about British composer Benjamin Britten. Tony Palmer’s work has been recognized with over forty international awards; not bad, for someone who fell into filmmaking.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Dec 6, 2021
52 min
Paavo Järvi Conducts Beautiful Music
(Recorded June 2021) Estonian conductor Paavo Järvi is one of the most in-demand maestros in the world, and one of Alec’s favorite conductors. Järvi is currently the chief conductor of the NHK symphony orchestra in Tokyo and the Tonhalle Orchester-Zürich. Over his career, he’s led orchestras in Paris, Frankfurt, Stockholm, Malmö, and, for the decade between 2001 and 2011, here in the United States, as the musical director of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. He and his musical family are pillars of the thriving classical music scene in his home country of Estonia. Paavo Järvi talks to Alec about how slowing down in the pandemic offered Paavo time to think, his early love of music, what it was like to come to the United States from Soviet-era Estonia as a 17-year-old, and what he took away from a decade of conducting the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Nov 29, 2021
52 min
Lucy Walker Asks Hard Questions About Wildfires
(Recorded September 2021) British documentarian Lucy Walker is asking big questions with her latest film, Bring Your Own Brigade. Specifically, why are there more catastrophic wildfires worldwide, and what could mitigate the destruction? Her gripping film focuses on real people impacted by two 2018 California wildfires, “The Camp Fire,” which killed 85 and nearly destroyed the town of Paradise, and “The Woolsey Fire,” which devastated parts of Malibu. Lucy’s camera takes you from the horror of people struggling to escape the wildfires to disbelief as residents reject steps that could limit future destruction. Lucy Walker’s other films include The Crash Reel, Countdown to Zero, Waste Land, Blindsight, and Devil’s Playground. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Nov 22, 2021
54 min
Glenn Shepard and Filipe DeAndrade Tell Stories in the Wild
(Recorded July 2021) Glenn Shepard, Ph.D., is an ethnobotanist and medical anthropologist who’s worked with indigenous people in the Amazon for decades. Filipe DeAndrade is the host of Nat Geo Wild’s Untamed. These remarkable storytellers have a way of making you care about people, places, and animals that are often overlooked and misunderstood. The Brazilan-born, Cleveland-raised DeAndrade is a rising star in the world of wildlife filmmaking, and he has a contagious enthusiasm for wild animals and adventure. Glenn Shepard lives in northern Brazil and works as a researcher at the Emilio Goeldi Museum near the mouth of the Amazon river. He’s worked with indigenous people along the Amazon, from the Machiguenga in Peru to the Kayapo in northern Brazil.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Nov 15, 2021
1 hr 6 min
Marla Frazee Draws A Delightful Childhood
(Recorded July 2021) Marla Frazee’s an award-winning children’s book author and illustrator. She also the genius behind Boss Baby, the business-suit-wearing, hard-charging infant who changed Alec’s life. Marla Frazee says she tackles serious topics such as babies, birthday cake, boxer shorts, boys, and roller coasters. She’s been honored twice with the prestigious Caldecott medal. She’s written and illustrated A Couple Of Boys Have The Best Week Ever; Walk On!; and Santa Claus, The World’s Number One Toy Expert. She’s also illustrated books by other authors including All The World; The Seven Silly Eaters; Stars; and the New York Times bestselling Clementine series. Learn more about your ad-choices at
Nov 8, 2021
49 min
Anthony Fauci Could Use a Day Off
Alec talks with Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the Chief Medical Advisor to President Biden. He talks to Alec about the latest in the pandemic and his long career.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Oct 11, 2021
54 min
Tom Jones Still Has It
Tom Jones’ booming baritone has led him to sell over 100 million records in his nearly six-decade career. He had a string of hits in the mid-1960s including “It’s Not Unusual,” “What’s New Pussycat?” “She’s A Lady,” “Green, Green Grass Of Home,” “I’ll Never Fall In Love Again,” and “Delilah.” Now in his early 80s, Tom Jones is still going strong with a new album out and an upcoming tour. Tom Jones talks with Alec about growing up in a small town in Wales, how contracting tuberculosis changed his life and the secret to his nearly six-decade marriage to his middle-school sweetheart Linda and how he's been managing since her death in 2016.  Learn more about your ad-choices at
Sep 27, 2021
56 min
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