Host Ira Glass, with a recording of a 1962 Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and Sammy Davis Jr., appearance at the Villa Venice, a club outside Chicago. What's fascinating about Sinatra is how he is so many different people at once, and they're all on display in this recording: sentimental crooner, cruel woman-baiter, bully, goofball.
Michael Ventura, who grew up Sicilian in New York, says that as a kid he thought Sinatra was in his family. His book The Death of Frank Sinatra is not really about Sinatra.
Ira and music contributor John Conners on Sinatra's worst songs. And a brief history of what makes that 1950s Sinatra sound so great, with Will Friedwald, author of the definitive book on Sinatra's music, Sinatra! The Song Is You: A Singer's Art.
A Bulls dream from Chicagoan Brett Grossman, and an acoustic guitar cover of Bulls theme music from Chicago musician Rick Karr.
Writer Quincy Troupe talks about how, as a boy, he idolized Miles Davis, and how, as a man, he actually became one of Davis's closest friends. And how his picture of the man changed.
Eighteen-year-old correspondent Claudia Perez goes to an audition where a thousand Mexican women and girls dress up to play the slain Mexican pop star Selena in an upcoming film about her life. Feelings about Selena run so high that when her fans talk about her, they often cry.
Ira plays tapes of his own father, Barry, who was a radio deejay in the mid-1950s. Barry gave up spinning records when he decided that he couldn't make a decent living at it, and for over a decade he was against his son going into radio, not wanting him to waste time the way he did.
Host Ira Glass talks about recently released archival television interviews with the Beatles, who suddenly seem a little less magic — and a lot more pedestrian (4 minutes).
A Christmas radio play by David Sedaris and the Pinetree Gang.