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Episode 311: Joe Manganiello, Devendra Banhart, Joy Williams

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This week: “Magic Mike” star Joe Manganiello strips away our bad etiquette habits… Artist-musician Devendra Banhart ruminates on art, ritual, and everlasting honey… Grammy-winner Joy Williams (formerly of The Civil Wars) shares a party soundtrack, direct from her Nashville “Night Circus”…The pros and cons of dining with dogs… Nina Simone gets a close-up, from acclaimed documentarian Liz Garbus… Writer Rebecca Makkai asks, what if Bach were one of us? (and we wanted to date him). Plus! Epic pie fights, the saxophone’s humble beginnings, and a throwback Will Smith icebreaker.


Joe Manganiello - 'Fresh Prints'

Icebreaker

The "Magic Mike XXL" star tells a snowy icebreaker with the perfect '90s sitcom reference before answering a few listener questions in our etiquette segment.


The Pie Fight Scene to Rule Them All is Found

Small Talk

Richard Lawson, Hollywood columnist for Vanity Fair, gives us the scoop on how the second reel from Laurel and Hardy's "The Battle of the Century" was rediscovered after being lost for 60 years.


Monsieur Sax and his Mutant Horn

A History Lesson With Booze ®

Around this time in 19th century France, Antoine-Joseph "Adolphe" Sax got an idea for a super-instrument. Learn the story of the saxophone's start and then finish it off with a brassy citrus cocktail.


Joy Williams' Spirited Dinner Party Soundtrack

Soundtrack

Singer-songwriter Joy Williams, half of the late great Grammy-winning duo The Civil Wars, is about to release her latest solo effort, "Venus." She provides us with a playlist for the kind of dinner party that features comfort food and air-drumming.


Devendra Banhart Gets Mystical with Art

Guest of Honor

Devendra Banhart's alternately gentle and psychedelic pop music has garnered him a cult-like following. He's collaborated with the likes of Beck and Antony and the Johnsons. But meanwhile, he's pursued a parallel career as a fine artist. He talks to us about his new art book, and launches a new band with Rico.


Rebecca Makkai Imagines Bach as a Boyfriend

Eavesdropping

Writer Rebecca Makkai's short fiction appeared in "The Best American Short Stories" anthology for four consecutive years. This week, she released her first story collection -- it's called "Music for Wartime." She reads an excerpt about a fantasy life with Baroque composer Johann Sebastian Bach.


Will New York Restaurants go to the Dogs?

Main Course

Last week, the New York state legislature passed a bill that, if signed into law, would allow dogs to hang out with their owners at eateries. Brendan discusses the pros and (mostly) cons of the possibly soon-to-be law.


Joe Manganiello Strips Away Stereotypes, Bad Etiquette

Etiquette

Joe Manganiello won legions of fans playing Alcide, a werewolf in the smash HBO series "True Blood." He also plays (ahem) Big Dick Richie, one of the tribe of male strippers whose lives were portrayed with a surprising sweetness and intelligence in the hit film "Magic Mike." Joe reprises the role in the new sequel, "Magic Mike XXL." He gives us an in-depth look at the world of male strippers, then advises our listeners on horrible nicknames, breakfast birthday bashes and open-shirt policies.


The Triumphs and Tragedies of Nina Simone Through the Lens of Liz Garbus

Chattering Class

Nina Simone, known as the "high priestess of soul," has returned to the zeitgeist recently and is the subject of a new documentary released this week on Netflix -- the first they've ever commissioned -- called "What Happened, Misss Simone?" The film's director, Liz Garbus, talks with Brendan about the singer's brilliant musical talent, her struggle with bipolar disorder, and her passion for the civil rights movement.


Playlist 311

Blog

All the music from episode 311.