Norm Macdonald has been a major figure in the comedy world since at least the early '90s, when he began a long run as a cast member on "Saturday Night Live,” where he managed to delight and/or outrage the audience and his bosses with his take no prisoner satire. Now he's published a memoir called, "Based on a True Story.” Before tackling our listeners' etiquette questions, the comedian explains why the book is filled with half-truths.
At age 10, Anna Chlumsky became one of the most beloved child stars in America when she starred in the sweet coming-of-age flick "My Girl," alongside Macaulay Culkin. These days, she's known for her foul-mouthed "VEEP" character. The actress shares a few toned-down expletives she uses at home and explains how a chat with singer Roberta Flack led her back into acting.
Derek Brown writes about drinks for outlets like the Atlantic and The Washington Post. He also runs a slew of celebrated bars, including "The Columbia Room," which GQ once said makes the best Martini in America. The D.C. Bartender-in-Chief tells us all about "the king of cocktails," and why a Martini with balanced ingredients is a better Martini.
The writer and activist has found an audience-- and faced repeated backlash-- as she's talked about what it's like to grow up big in a body-obsessed culture. Her first book, just released this week, is called "Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman."
Actor Michael McKean is probably best known for his comedy roles. He was the charmingly dumb Lenny on the hit '70s sitcom "Laverne and Shirley." And he played David St. Hubbins, lead singer of Spinal Tap... the fictional heavy-metal band he created along with Christopher Guest... as immortalized in the film "This Is Spinal Tap." But McKean's latest role is a far cry from all that. He's onstage now at L.A.'s Mark Taper Forum, in "Father Comes Home From the War." He talks about this his dark and complicated role and tells us about the time Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton had a “Spinal Tap” moment.
Dick Cavett is considered one of the greatest talk show hosts ever. From the '60s through the '80s his interviews with celebrities ranging from Gore Vidal to Jimi Hendrix were and are renowned for their humor and intelligence. The Onion AV Club said he "prove[d] good conversation makes good television." He also was a regular columnist for the New York Times and has published several books. He looks back on his part in the feud between Mary McCarthy and Lillian Hellman, what it was like to interview a reticent Beatle, and more.
Before we heard a few of our listeners' theme song picks, we asked the "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" star to share her favorite song. Rico and Brendan weigh in with their own picks too!
Cameron Esposito been named "A Comic to Watch" by The New York Times and Jezebel, and you may, in fact, have watched her on IFC's Maron or E!'s Chelsea Lately. Her 2014 album, "Same Sex Symbol," was named "One of the Year's Best" by The A.V. Club. Now she's just released a new album, which was also filmed as a stand-up special. It's called "Marriage Material." The comedian turns her bachelor bash into a stand-up special and explains how the Supreme Court changed her sense of humor.
On stage and screen, Alan Cumming has played -- among other parts -- Dionysus, the Devil, God, a Marvel superhero, and every character in a one-man staging of "MacBeth." In recent years, he's co-hosted the Tonys, stolen scenes on "The Good Wife," written a best-selling memoir, and revived his iconic role as the master of ceremonies in the musical "Cabaret." Before taking on a few of our listeners' etiquette questions, the triple-threat reveals how he came up with the concept of his new album, "Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs."
meet the one guy on our NOTscars special who actually has been honored this week by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences: Steve Smith, a Canadian who co-created the AirWall. He explains how his cost-cutting bouncy castle has helped films like "Godzilla" and "X-Men: Apocalypse."