Live Wire

Series produced by Live Wire! Radio

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Live Wire mixes an old school radio format with a contemporary edge—it's live theatre and radio variety with a unique blend of interviews, music, spoken word, and original comedy.

NOTE: This program is available to PRI affiliates. For more information please email memberships@prx.org.

Live Wire is radio variety for the attention-span challenged. It's music from up-and-coming bands, original comedy and scintillating interviews with writers, filmmakers, comedians and people who think cool thoughts. Hosted by Luke Burbank ("Wait Wait Don't Tell Me," "Too Beautiful to Live") the show is taped in front of a live audience in Portland, Oregon and airs on public radio stations around the country.

From Garrison Keillor - March ‘07
"I like this new show that’s coming out of Oregon Public Radio. It’s called Live Wire, I sit and listen to it and a kind of light comes out of the radio speaker, a whole ‘nother view of human experience, and new voices which we need in public radio. I need, because I’m hoping to retire soon, I’m getting to that age on A Prairie Home Companion. And when I do, I want there to be shows on public radio that I can sit in my car, in my driveway and hang on their every word. Live Wire is one of those shows. It could be for Portland and Oregon, what Prairie Home is for Minnesota and St. Paul and Lake Woebegone.”

From musician/comedian Reggie Watts
"Live Wire is the type of experience that activates my romance about the beauty of live recorded variety shows. It's smart, well-written and performed by a cast of sweethearts. The music is also top-notch. So when I am a part of the show listening to the audience completely enjoying themselves, I feel proud to be a part of such a passionate undertaking." Hide full description

Live Wire is radio variety for the attention-span challenged. It's music from up-and-coming bands, original comedy and scintillating interviews with writers, filmmakers, comedians and people who think cool thoughts. Hosted by Luke Burbank ("Wait Wait Don't Tell Me," "Too Beautiful to Live") the show is taped in front of a live audience in Portland, Oregon and airs on public radio stations around the country.

From Garrison Keillor - March ‘07
"I like this new show that’s coming out of Oregon Public Radio. It’s called Live Wire, I sit and listen to it and a kind of light comes out of the radio speaker, a whole ‘nother view of human experience, and new voices which we need in public radio. I need, because I’m hoping to retire soon, I’m getting to that age on A Prairie Home Companion. And...

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412 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: Franny Choi on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode gives "poetic license" to comedian Pete Holmes and poet Franny Choi, with a performance from Pink Martini's Jimmie Herrod.

  • Added: Dec 10, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Dave Hill on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode "draws the line" with New Yorker illustrator Emily Flake and comedian Dave Hill, plus music from indie rock group Giants in the Trees.

  • Added: Dec 05, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: W. Kamau Bell on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode explores "other worlds" with comedian and television host W. Kamau Bell, author Karen Russell, and musician Kishi Bashi.

  • Added: Nov 25, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Irene Taylor Brodsky on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode explores "love languages" with filmmaker Irene Taylor Brodsky and poet Matthew Zapruder, plus music from Bodies on the Beach.

  • Added: Nov 20, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Paul F. Tompkins on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode unpacks "finding your voice" with comedian Paul F. Tompkins and activist Anuradha Bhagwati, plus music from Patterson Hood.

  • Added: Nov 14, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Dina Nayeri on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode says there's "no place like place" with writer Dina Nayeri, author Adam Mansbach, and comedian Shain Brenden, plus music from LaRhonda...

  • Added: Nov 07, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Eula Scott Bynoe & Jeannie Yandel on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode celebrates "wild cards" with podcasters Eula Scott Bynoe & Jeannie Yandel, comedian Kurt Braunohler, and Mongol Derby winner Lara Prio...

  • Added: Oct 29, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Megan Phelps-Roper on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode interprets what it means to "leave a legacy" with writer and activist Megan Phelps-Roper, comedian Joe Kwaczala, and County Judge Xiom...

  • Added: Oct 22, 2019
  • Length: 59:01
Caption: Michael Ian Black on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode discusses "getting to the point" with actor and comedian Michael Ian Black, writer Melissa Febos, and Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad,...

  • Added: Oct 14, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Chuck Klosterman on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode hits the "social studies" books with writer Chuck Klosterman and humorist Tiffany Midge, plus music from indie pop group Tacocat.

  • Added: Oct 09, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Ryan O'Connell on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode examines the "figure of speech" with grammar expert Mary Norris of The New Yorker, actor and television writer Ryan O'Connell, and com...

  • Added: Oct 01, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Rhys Darby on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode explores "origin stories" with comedian Rhys Darby, comic book writer Kelly Sue DeConnick, and theater performer Ahamefule J. Oluo, wi...

  • Added: Sep 25, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: US Senator Jeff Merkley on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode ponders the "not too distant future" with U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon, poet Anis Mojgani, comedian Joe Zimmerman, and Afroviva...

  • Added: Sep 16, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Clyde W. Ford on Live Wire , Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode has "the last laugh" with comedian Josh Gondelman, author Clyde W. Ford, endurance athletes Alex Borsuk & Kaytlyn Gerbin, and music f...

  • Added: Sep 12, 2019
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Naomi Ekpirigin on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode discusses the art of "balancing acts" with author Pam Houston, comedian Naomi Ekperigin, social activist Nadya Okamoto, and music from...

  • Added: Sep 05, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Franny Choi on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode gives "poetic license" to comedian Pete Holmes and poet Franny Choi, with a performance from Pink Martini's Jimmie Herrod.

  • Added: Aug 28, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Mitchell S. Jackson on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode gets down to "real talk" with writer Mitchell S. Jackson, psychotherapist and author Lori Gottlieb, comedian Mohanad Elshieky, and mus...

  • Added: Aug 19, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Colin O'Brady on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode "breaks the ice" with endurance athlete and adventurer Colin O’Brady, author Dani Shapiro, comedian Chris Garcia, and music from Casey...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Matteo Lane on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode "goes rogue" with blogger Geraldine DeRuiter, comedian Matteo Lane, and vegan chef Makini Howell, plus music from Valley Maker.

  • Added: Aug 07, 2019
  • Length: 58:59