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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388 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: Hanif Abdurraqib on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode is all about "buggin' out" with music writer Hanif Abdurraqib, author and podcaster Nora McInerny, and comedian Note Davis, with music...

  • Added: Feb 14, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Anya Yurchyshyn on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode talks "do-overs" with journalist and podcaster Mike Pesca, author Anya Yurchyshyn, science vlogger Lindsey Murphy, and comedian Robby ...

  • Added: Feb 06, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Eileen Myles on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
In this episode, we hear from two celebrated writers during the Portland Book Festival - author Luis Alberto Urrea and poet Eileen Myles. Plus, Liv...

  • Added: Jan 31, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Paul F. Tompkins on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode takes us inside and out of the "comfort zone" with comedian Paul F. Tompkins, writer Ijeoma Oluo, and hip hop artist Open Mike Eagle.

  • Added: Jan 22, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Ian Karmel on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode talks "living the dream" with comedian Ian Karmel, radio host Al Letson, and satirist Caitlin Kunkel, with music from Laura Gibson.

  • Added: Jan 17, 2019
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Hanif Abdurraqib on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode examines "breakthroughs" with writer Hanif Abdurraqib, comedian Beth Stelling, and Dr. Mary Zelinski, with music from John Craigie.

  • Added: Jan 08, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Dan Savage on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode unpacks "the morning after" with sex and relationship columnist Dan Savage, journalist and writer Shaughnessy Bishop-Stall, and comed...

  • Added: Jan 03, 2019
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Matt Young on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode talks about getting "in over your head" with Marine-turned-writer Matt Young, Portland non-profit leader Brandi Tuck, and comedian Kat...

  • Added: Dec 20, 2018
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: John Hodgman on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode considers the "hand-me-down" with author and humorist John Hodgman, writer RJ Young, and founder of "She Shreds" magazine Fabi Reyna, ...

  • Added: Dec 20, 2018
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Chapman & MacLain Way on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode explores "true beliefs" with filmmaking duo Chapman & MacLain Way, journalist and author Mary Pilon, comedian Ahmed Bharoocha, bee ent...

  • Added: Dec 07, 2018
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Lauren Groff on Live Wore, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode discusses "Character Building" with celebrated author Lauren Groff, writer Tommy Orange, comedian Caitlin Weierhauser, and singer-song...

  • Added: Dec 06, 2018
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Laurie Kilmartin on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episodes unmasks the "unmentionables" with comedian Laurie Kilmartin, YouTuber Gaby Dunn, and singer-songwriter Chris Staples.

  • Added: Dec 04, 2018
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Abbi Jacobson on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode talks "Hitting the Road" with actor Abbi Jacobson from Broad City, writer Nicole Chung, and the host of Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! Pe...

  • Added: Nov 27, 2018
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Lindy West on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode considers the "Guilty Pleasure" with New York Times columnist Lindy West, UnREAL co-creator Sarah Gertrude Shapiro, comedian Alex Falc...

  • Added: Nov 27, 2018
  • Length: 58:58
Caption: Phoebe Robinson on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode interprets what it means to "Pay Your Dues" with comedian and podcaster Phoebe Robinson, writer Thomas Page McBee, goat yoga entrepren...

  • Added: Nov 08, 2018
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Jose Antonio Vargas on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode discusses what happens when you "Face Your Fears" with journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, comedian Marcella Arguello, writer and former L...

  • Added: Oct 19, 2018
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Gary Shteyngart on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode touches on "Fresh Starts" with author Gary Shteyngart, comedian Hari Kondabolu, world champion fly caster Maxine McCormick, and Portla...

  • Added: Nov 30, 2018
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Roger Reeves on Live Wire, Credit: E. Wight Photo
Live Wire "Faces the Music" in Austin, TX with busker-turned-blues artist Charley Crockett, poet Roger Reeves, and BBQ masters LeAnn Mueller and Al...

  • Added: Oct 19, 2018
  • Length: 59:00
Caption: Abdi Nor Iftin on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode explores “Great Escapes” with writer Tessa Fontaine, comedian and actor Moses Storm, memoirist and visa lottery winner Abdi Nor Iftin,...

  • Added: Nov 29, 2018
  • Length: 58:59
Caption: Anya Yurchyshyn on Live Wire, Credit: Jennie Baker
This episode considers the “do over” with author Anya Yurchyshyn, journalist Mike Pesca, and science vlogger Lindsey Murphy. Plus performances from...

  • Added: Nov 29, 2018
  • Length: 58:58