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Here's The Thing with Alec Baldwin


Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin takes listeners into the lives of artists, policy makers and performers. Alec sidesteps the predictable by going inside the dressing rooms, apartments, and offices of people we want to understand better: Ira Glass, Lena Dunham, David Letterman, Barbara Streisand, Tom Yorke, Chris Rock and others. Hear what happens when an inveterate guest becomes a host.


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Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin takes listeners into the lives of artists, policy makers and performers. Alec sidesteps the predictable by going inside the dressing rooms, apartments, and offices of people we want to understand better: Ira Glass, Lena Dunham, David Letterman, Barbara Streisand, Tom Yorke, Chris Rock and others. Hear what happens when an inveterate guest becomes a host.




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Photojournalist Brian Hamill Always Gets His Shot

Photojournalist Brian Hamill is known for his still photographs from movie sets and portraits of rock and roll legends, athletes, celebrities, and politicians. Everyone from Muhammad Ali to Frank Sinatra to Barbara Streisand has been the subject of his lens over the course of his five decades of work. The life-long New Yorker has captured some of the most iconic photos of John Lennon and Yoko Ono, which were recently compiled into his 2022 book, “Dream Lovers: John and Yoko in NYC.” His work on set spans more than 75 motion pictures, including unforgettable films like “Annie Hall,” “Raging Bull,” “Big,” “Tootsie,” and “You’ve Got Mail.” Hamill’s photojournalism experience extends to capturing moments of strife and conflict, including the 1994 Northridge Earthquake and “The Troubles” in 1970s Northern Ireland. Alec Baldwin speaks to Hamill about growing up in Brooklyn as the child of Irish immigrants, his behind-the-scenes experiences on the world’s most memorable movie sets, and the backstory that led to taking John Lennon’s portrait. See for privacy information.


Justine Bateman Talks About A.I. and the Threat to Writers and Actors

As the writers’ and actors' strike in Hollywood stretches into the fall, many have called this moment “existential.” After negotiations with AMPTP, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, broke down, SAG-AFTRA and WGA members took to picket lines over dwindling wages and the use of artificial intelligence, which may change the entertainment industry forever. Writer, director, and producer Justine Bateman is one guild member warning of A.I.'s potentially devastating influence. Following her roles in Family Ties and Satisfaction, among many others, Bateman transitioned to working behind the scenes as a filmmaker and author. She earned her Computer Science and Digital Media Management degree from UCLA in 2016, which has become all the more relevant facing the rise of A.I. Bateman speaks with Alec Baldwin about the threat A.I. poses to the entire entertainment industry, how the business has changed since she first started in it, and what drives her creative work. See for privacy information.


Andrew Berman - Summer Staff Picks

It’s time for the final episode in our Summer Staff Picks series, highlighting favorite conversations from the Here’s The Thing archives. This week, we revisit Alec Baldwin’s conversation with Andrew Berman. He has been called one of the most powerful people in New York real estate, but not because he's a deep-pocketed developer. Berman is the Executive Director of Village Preservation, where he advocates for the protection and conservation of historically important buildings and sites in Greenwich Village, the East Village and NoHo, including the cultural touchstone The Stonewall Inn. Alec first spoke with Berman in 2015 regarding his background and what led him to this field, how the changing zoning laws affect his work, and his wish for the city’s future. Berman joined Alec again earlier this summer for an update on his work since last they spoke, including the recent wins that Village Preservation has achieved, the ways the city has changed since covid and the challenges involved in solving the city’s affordable housing crisis. See for privacy information.


Mick Fleetwood - Summer Staff Picks

Our summer tradition at Here’s the Thing continues, as staff members choose their favorite conversations from the archives for our Summer Staff Pick series. This week, we revisit Alec’s 2021 interview with Mick Fleetwood, drummer and founding member of Fleetwood Mac, one of the most successful rock bands of all time and creators of enduring hits like “Landslide,” “Dreams,” and “Don’t Stop.” Fleetwood talks to Alec about how his dyslexia led him to drumming, how supportive parents encouraged his talent and his move to London as a teenager, how his friendship with the band’s founder, guitarist Peter Green, evolved to a life-long friendship, and how Fleetwood Mac balanced the weight of their interpersonal dynamics and the band’s wild, over-the-top success. See for privacy information.


“Unraveled” Podcast: The History of the Long Island Serial Killer

Making recent headlines is the arrest in a cold case over a decade-old, the Long Island Serial Killer. From 2010 to 2012, the remains of 11 bodies were found on or near Gilgo Beach on the east end of Long Island, New York. In July of 2023, authorities arrested Rex Heuermann, a 59-year old architect charged with the murder of three women in the case – and named as a prime suspect in a fourth, based on phone records and DNA evidence. True crime documentary and podcast producers Billy Jensen and Alexis Linkletter were on the hunt long before these recent developments. Their 2021 podcast,“Unraveled: Long Island Serial Killer,'' uncovers a web of corruption and cover-ups perpetuated by the Suffolk County Police Department that enabled the investigation to go unresolved for so long. Alec speaks with Jensen and Linkletter about their findings, what the recent discoveries reveal – and what questions still remain. See for privacy information.


Christian McBride on Jazz and “Jawn”

Acclaimed jazz musician Christian McBride has made hundreds of recordings, won eight Grammy Awards and led numerous ensembles, including the Christian McBride Band, the Christian McBride Big Band, Inside Straight and the New Jawn. The versatile bassist has collaborated with jazz legends Herbie Hancock, Ray Brown, Freddie Hubbard, and Chick Corea, as well as artists outside the genre like Sting, Paul McCartney and Celine Dion. Known as a child prodigy, McBride performed with Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis while still in high school, where he attended Philadelphia’s High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, alongside future members of The Roots and Boyz II Men. McBride now serves as the artistic director of the Newport Jazz Festival and the educational foundation Jazz House Kids. Christian McBride speaks with Alec about his influences, leaving Juilliard early to go on the road, and how being a working musician is similar to being a professional athlete. For information on upcoming tour dates, go to You can find a playlist featuring Alec’s favorite Christian McBride songs here. See for privacy information.


Katie Porter - Summer Staff Picks

Our Here’s the Thing Summer Staff Picks series continues, featuring our favorite episodes from the archives. This week, we revisit Alec’s 2021 interview with U.S. Representative Katie Porter. In 2018, Porter was the first Democrat ever to be elected in her traditionally conservative Orange County, California district. Prompted to run by Trump’s 2016 win, Porter quickly made a name for herself with her tough questioning of CEOs and administration officials, often using a whiteboard to lay out the facts. Katie Porter’s no-nonsense approach comes in part from her upbringing in Iowa. During the farm crisis of the 1980s, she saw first-hand how her father, a third generation farmer turned community loan officer, helped to support their neighbors. She went on to study bankruptcy law under Elizabeth Warren at Harvard Law School and become a consumer protection attorney and a law professor. A single mom to three school-age children, Katie Porter tells Alec people often have often underestimated her - at their own peril. See for privacy information.


Hans Zimmer - Summer Staff Picks

Our staff picks continue at “Here’s The Thing,” where throughout the summer, members of our team select their favorite interviews from the archives. This week, we revisit Alec’s 2021 interview with Hans Zimmer, one of the most celebrated and successful film composers of all time. The German-born Zimmer has scored more than 150 movies including “Gladiator,” “Hannibal,” “Sherlock Holmes,” “The Last Samurai,” and “The Thin Red Line,” earning him two Academy Awards (“Dune” and “The Lion King”) and four Grammys. His collaboration with director Christopher Nolan (“The Dark Knight” trilogy, “Interstellar,” “Dunkirk,” and “Inception,”) has become one of the most celebrated partnerships in movie history. Zimmer shares with Alec how he knew music was his path, how his partnership with Nolan began, and how his scores seek to enrich a film’s emotional journey. See for privacy information.


Lena Dunham and Carol Burnett - Summer Staff Picks

We are continuing our summer tradition at “Here’s The Thing” where members of the staff select their favorite interviews from the archives. This week, we revisit Alec Baldwin’s conversations with two amazing women in entertainment, Lena Dunham and Carol Burnett. Lena Dunham, creator and star of the ground-breaking “Girls” and writer/director of the recent film “Catherine Called Birdy,” spoke with Alec in 2013 about making her first film, “Tiny Furniture,” how her work evolved following its success and what it's like to play a version of herself. In 2015, Alec spoke with comedian and actress Carol Burnett about making 11-seasons of the Emmy-winning “The Carol Burnett Show,” navigating being a woman in show business in the 60s and creating her incredible performance as Miss Hannigan in “Annie.” See for privacy information.


Activist Gianna Reeve on Starbucks’ Unionization

Against the backdrop of soaring stock prices and multi-million dollar executive packages, the labor movement is undergoing a resurgence. A Starbucks location in Buffalo, NY became the first within the coffee chain to unionize in 2021, and since then, more than 330 stores in 39 states have followed suit – with more elections underway. All the while, the Starbucks corporation was engaging in controversial labor-busting practices: the National Labor Relations Board found that Starbucks violated federal labor laws and a federal judge ruled that Starbucks engaged in “egregious and widespread misconduct.” Guest Gianna Reeve is an employee of the Camp Road Starbucks in the Buffalo area – and an organizer with Starbucks Workers United. Reeve joins Alec Baldwin to share her experience at one of the first stores to organize, the conditions that led to the unionization efforts, and what the Starbucks Workers United organization hopes for the future. Gianna Reeve is a featured participant in the upcoming documentary “The Baristas vs The Billionaire.” To learn more, visit: See for privacy information.


Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Actors Studio: Remembering Anne Jackson & Eli Wallach

This past year marked the 75th Anniversary of the Actors Studio, the nonprofit organization that has shared “truth in acting” with decades of film, television and theater professionals. This episode is the next in our series celebrating some of those responsible for the studio’s success. Guests Roberta and Katherine Wallach are the daughters of stage and screen stars Anne Jackson and Eli Wallach. Jackson and Wallach met during a 1946 production of the Tennessee Williams’ play, “This Property Is Condemned.” They became early members of the Actors Studio and would go on to perform together in film, tv and theater for decades. Roberta and Katherine are actors in their own right, members of the studio, and sit on its Board of Directors. Katherine Wallach has appeared in “Goodfellas,” “The King of Comedy” and “Gangs of New York” and also uses her creative talents as a jewelry designer. Roberta Wallach is a Drama-Desk nominee and began her film career while still in high school. The siblings share what it was like growing up around acting royalty, their father’s perspective on them going into the family business and their thoughts on their parents' enduring legacy. See for privacy information.


The Athleticism and Elegance of Conductor Rafael Payare

Rafael Payare, or “Rafa,” as he’s known more informally, is the energetic, electrifying and unmistakable conductor that is taking the classical world by storm. Payare currently serves as Music Director of both the Montreal and San Diego Symphonies. A graduate of Venezuela’s famed El Sistema program, Payare first attracted attention as winner of Denmark’s Malko International Conducting Competition in 2012. Since then, he’s brought his exuberance and elegance to conduct preeminent orchestras across the globe, from London to New York, Munich to Boston, and Stockholm to Chicago. Rafael Payare speaks with Alec about the many important conductors he’s learned from, how he approaches putting together a music program, and why finding the right chemistry with an orchestra is like falling in love. The following compositions are featured in this episode: Gustav Mahler Symphony No. 5 with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, conducted by Rafael Payare, provided courtesy of Pentatone. You can find the album here. Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 11 in G minor, Op. 103 “The Year 1905,” conducted by Rafael Payare, courtesy of the San Diego Symphony on Platoon. You can find the album here. See for privacy information.


Filmmaker Ryan White Wants You To Eat Your Broccoli

Filmmaker Ryan White has made a dizzying array of unique documentaries, including “The Keepers,” about the unsolved murder of a Catholic nun, “The Case Against 8” about the fight for marriage equality, “Good Night Oppy,” which traces the journey of NASA’s Mars Rover and “Assassins,” about the murder of North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un’s half-brother. The Emmy-nominated director’s latest project, “Pamela, A Love Story,” is a raw look at the life of 90’s bombshell Pamela Anderson. It showcases a more vulnerable side of the actress and re-examines the major life events of the star – from her rise to fame to the infamous, stolen sex tape with her then-husband, Tommy Lee. Alec speaks with Ryan White about what he learned filming with Anderson, the impact the documentary had on her life and how he balances the light and the dark of his projects. See for privacy information.


Artificial Intelligence: The Future is Now

There is an important conversation happening regarding the rapidly-changing world of artificial intelligence and how it will affect us. Alec speaks with two leaders in the tech community that have worked on the systems integral to today’s A.I. revolution. Blake Lemoine is a computer scientist and former senior software engineer at Google. He was working on their Responsible A.I. team when he went public with his claim that the A.I. was sentient. Lemoine was subsequently fired and now champions accountability and transparency in the tech sector. Jay LeBoeuf is an executive, entrepreneur, and educator in the music and creative technology industries. He is the Head Of Business & Corporate Development at Descript, an audio and video editing platform that uses “voice cloning” technology. Alec speaks with LeBoeuf and Lemoine about the many applications of A.I., what dangers we need to be aware of and what is to come next in this transformative space. See for privacy information.


We Remember Gordon Lightfoot

Last week, we lost the great singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot. In honor of his passing, Alec is sharing his 2016 conversation with the musician, one of his favorites in the history of the podcast: Over the course of a career that has lasted more than half a century, Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot achieved global stardom and exceptional influence. Bob Dylan’s a fan—he's said, “I can’t think of any [Lightfoot songs] I don’t like.” These songs—“Beautiful,” “Sundown,” “If You Could Read My Mind,” and many others—have been treasured by generations of popular musicians and listeners around the world. But Gordon Lightfoot was just one of many aspirants who moved to Toronto in the early 1960s to try their hand in the burgeoning folk music scene there. Lightfoot tells Alec about fitting a feeling to a melody, why he owes his first hit record to an exec's girlfriend, and how he wrote "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" by pulling lines straight from the newspaper. You can listen to all of the music from this episode and other selections from Gordon Lightfoot in a curated playlist here. See for privacy information.


Filmmaker Judith Vecchione on Vietnam, Civil Rights and Beyond

Forty years ago, “Vietnam: A Television History,” the 13-part documentary series examining the Vietnam War, premiered on PBS. It served as a searing look into the background, cost and toll taken on the principal figures involved in the war, both at home and abroad. Judith Vecchione served as one of the producers on the series and joined Alec to speak about what went into creating such a wide-ranging and deep investigation of the conflict. The Emmy- and Peabody-winning Vecchione has served as an executive producer with Boston-based PBS station WGBH for the past 23 years, working on many ground-breaking projects, including the Civil Rights series “Eyes on the Prize.” Vecchione shares with Alec the weight of responsibility she felt in bringing “Vietnam: A Television History” to the public, what inspires her dedication to the important stories she produces, and how she mentors the next generation of documentary filmmakers. See for privacy information.


The Battle for a Solar-Powered Future

An area near the entrance to Death Valley National Park has the capacity to produce enough energy to power the entire planet if covered in solar panels. Yet for Nye County, Nevada residents, the question of what must be sacrificed – including the environmental and economic future of the area – and by whom, looms large. Hillary Angelo is the author of the Harper’s Magazine article, “Boomtown,” which explores the complexity of the solar land rush in the West. Angelo is an urban and environmental sociologist and Associate Professor of Sociology at UC Santa Cruz. Dustin Mulvaney, who was featured in the article, is a solar expert and Professor at San José State University. Alec speaks with Angelo and Mulvaney about the objections of residents, what spaces might be used instead, and how to rethink the future of energy. You can find the article, “Boomtown,” here: See for privacy information.


Everybody Loves Caroline Rhea

Caroline Rhea is best-known as Aunt Hilda in the 90s sitcom, “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” but the actor and comedian has been entertaining us in many forms for decades: hosting “The Biggest Loser” and “The Caroline Rhea Show,” performing in standup specials on Comedy Central and HBO, voicing Disney’s “Phineas and Ferb” and appearing as a panelist on game shows like “Hollywood Squares” and “Match Game” with Alec. Rhea speaks with Alec about getting back out on the road doing standup, why it was important to take time off from her career to raise her daughter, and why she’s most at home on stage. See for privacy information.


Chris Jones & Michael Mooney on the Rise and Fall of Siegfried & Roy

On October 3, 2003, a horrified audience looked on as Roy Horn, one-half of the famous German magician duo Siegfried & Roy, was bit by a 400-pound white tiger named “Mantecore” and dragged offstage. After many years in residency at the Mirage Las Vegas and more than 30,000 performances over their career featuring exotic animals, one of the big cats finally turned on their handlers. Chris Jones and Michael Mooney are the authors of The Atlantic article “The Original Tiger Kings: The Improbable Rise and Savage Fall of Siegfried & Roy,” which deconstructs this moment and everything that led to it. Jones and Mooney are journalists that have collectively written for Rolling Stone, GQ, Esquire and The Wall Street Journal Magazine. Chris Jones is also the author of the book The Eye Test: A Case for Human Creativity in the Age of Analytics, as well as serving as a writer and producer on Netflix’s Away. Michael Mooney is also the New York Times best-selling author of The Life and Legend of Chris Kyle: American Sniper, Navy SEAL. Together, they speak with Alec about the tragic event, the reporting behind the scenes and the lessons learned from the end of an era. You can find the article at: See for privacy information.


Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Actors Studio with Ellen Burstyn & Estelle Parsons

This past year marked the 75th Anniversary of the Actors Studio, the nonprofit organization that has shared “truth in acting” with decades of film, television and theater professionals, including some of the biggest names in the business. This episode is the first in a series of conversations with some of those responsible for the studio’s success. Alec currently serves as Co-President of the Actors Studio and had the opportunity to speak with two leaders within the institution: Co-President Ellen Burstyn, who joined the studio in 1967, is known for her roles in “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,”“The Exorcist,” and “Requiem for A Dream” – and also has the distinction of winning the “Triple Crown of Acting:” an Oscar, a Tony and two Emmy Awards. Alec then speaks with Co-Associate Artistic Director Estelle Parsons, who has been with the studio since 1962. Parsons earned an Academy Award for ”Bonnie and Clyde,” the second film she ever made, and has earned five Tony nominations and two Obies in her illustrious career. The two remarkable women share their stories of finding their way to the Actors Studio and the impact it had on their careers – and their craft. See for privacy information.