&#039Late Show&#039 Host Says He Has Finally Identified His Post-&#039Colbert Report&#039 Voice

For Stephen Colbert, taking over as host of The Late Show was not a hard choice. “I adore a live audience,” he says. “I really like the grind of every single day and I enjoy the folks I operate with.” Scott Kowalchyk/CBS hide caption

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Scott Kowalchyk/CBS

It has been much more than a year because Stephen Colbert took over as host of CBS’ The Late Show, and he’s lastly feeling comfortable being himself and not a character.

Just before The Late Show, Colbert spent nine years playing the part of a self-essential blowhard on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report. He tells Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross that he initially shied away from discussing politics or current events on The Late Show in an work to differentiate himself from his Colbert persona.

“It took me almost half a year to realize … that you can have a extremely opinionated, very topical show as oneself and not basically fall back into the basket of The Colbert Report,” he says. Now I have no qualms about getting sharp and satirical and very opinionated and saying whatever’s on my mind as quickly as I can.”

This fall, Colbert’s mind has been on the election. He’s been doing political comedy nearly every single evening, but do not expect him to be at his Late Show desk on election evening. Colbert’s Nov. 8 show will be pre-empted by CBS News coverage, so rather he’ll be hosting the Showtime special Stephen Colbert’s Live Election Night Democracy’s Series Finale: Who’s Going To Clean Up This S***? He promises guest stars, unique political commercials, musical guests and, of course, election results.


Interview Highlights

On why he decided to end The Colbert Report

The concept of “truthiness” — that was the thesis statement for the complete show, that how you feel is more crucial than what the facts are, and that the truth that you really feel is right is much more critical than something that the information could help. … We embodied it satirically, though it is not genuinely a new thought. … But I didn’t want to play that game any longer. … I just could not take playing that character any longer. … I started to really feel like I was stumbling downhill with an armful of bottles and that I couldn’t really preserve up the discipline, since it took discipline to remind myself each and every day to be the character, never be your self. …

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And so I decided a couple years prior to the show ended that I was going to finish the show. … It wasn’t because I did not like it any longer — I still liked it — but I just believed, I am not sure if I can actually hold this up with no hurting somebody.

I believed maybe I would make some large mistake with the character due to the fact he would say terrible factors. And I got away with some of the terrible things he would say or do since it was all filtered through his mask, but if I did not preserve the mask, it would just be me becoming terrible.

On acquiring The Late Show supply

It fell out of the sky. It was completely no part of my plans when I decided to finish The Colbert Report. It was a comprehensive surprise to me. It hadn’t been an ambition of mine, and I had just been an enormous fan of [David Letterman] and so I had fantastic respect for what he had built. But when they called and said, “OK, how about you?” I was shocked. …

I adore a reside audience, I really like the grind of every single day and I adore the individuals I work with. And it gave me all the items that I loved, and that was not a difficult choice. … To know that I could continue that was the greatest draw, and I also could not feel of something soon after The Colbert Report that would look like a promotion other than taking more than for Dave.

On leaving his Colbert character behind and finding his genuine voice on The Late Show

There is a confessional aspect to wearing a mask, the exact same purpose why it really is easier to confess behind a screen to a priest than face to face. So the character was a ten-year confession, possibly indulging ego and appetite through the person of this character. Then you go onstage as yourself and you are accountable for every thing you say and there’s a all-natural inclination to pull your punch because you have to be accountable for what you are saying. You can not hide behind the mask. … It took me a small whilst to realize that the character was not in danger of re-emerging.

On the perform pace of The Late Show compared to The Colbert Report

We would speak about a single subject perhaps for a week, or we would believe about one notion that we might do three or 4 days from now, or maybe two weeks from now as we created the concept and how my character may place himself in that news story.

Now, it really is how quickly can you talk about every thing that occurred in the news or in common culture in the last 24 hours, and it’s significantly faster than we utilized to work.

The joke I’ve created is that we went from go-kart to NASCAR, with all the marketing stickers on the side of our vehicle, as well. But it is a various, a lot more quickly way of functioning than we utilised to. It is less essay it is much more like reportage with jokes than a columnist. I utilized be like a columnist and now I’m writing day-to-day headlines.

On how he handles the pressure of the job

You got to like the anxiety. … I don’t know how to attach a good feeling to tension and pressure, but there is 1. There’s a bulletproof feeling that comes more than you, and it is truly a pleasant one particular, and you kind of have to like that. …

To do one particular of these jobs you got to sort of love the flaming toboggan ride of it.

To do 1 of these jobs, you got to kind of adore the flaming toboggan ride of it. You got to like it due to the fact everybody else is in the toboggan with you. You are doing it collectively, that’s the joy. Everybody is performing it together and at the end of it you go, ‘Hey! We survived! Quite very good show! Let’s do it once more tomorrow.’

That’s it. It’s the movement forward, since it in no way stops. You gotta love the downhill hurtle. There’s no finish line. You got to just enjoy missing all those trees that you could’ve hit right now.

Arts &amp Life : NPR


In Lumberjack Joints And Coffee Shops, Jewel Found Her Voice

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Singer/songwriter Jewel has a new memoir titled Never Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story, and a new album called Picking Up the Pieces.

Singer/songwriter Jewel has a new memoir titled In no way Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story, and a new album known as Selecting Up the Pieces. Matthew Rolston/Courtesy of Jewel hide caption

itoggle caption Matthew Rolston/Courtesy of Jewel

As part of a series named My Huge Break, All Items Considered is collecting stories of triumph, large and little. These are the moments when every thing seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

A run-down bar in rural Alaska is not any place for a kid. But when she was a child, that is exactly where songwriter Jewel discovered her voice — on dingy stages at lumberjack joints.

Jewel Kilcher was 8 years old when her parents divorced and her mom left the household. What was after the Kilcher loved ones band turned into a duo — just her and her dad. They’d sing at bars and taverns, putting on shows for down-and-out drinkers and drifters passing by means of.

One of Jewel Kilcher's early performances in a Swiss yodeling outfit with her dad.

One of Jewel Kilcher’s early performances in a Swiss yodeling outfit with her dad. Courtesy of Jewel hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Jewel

“It was the smells I bear in mind the most, you know, that stale beer smell when you stroll in to do your sound check earlier in the day,” Jewel says. “It was the individuals that actually stuck with me. Just watching what a lady would do for a compliment and what she would give up. Watching guys attempt and outrun their pain. Watching how these people ended up.”

“I was most likely the only fourth grader that went from elementary school right to the bar,” she says.

Jewel outlines her childhood in her new memoir, In no way Broken: Songs Are Only Half the Story, out on Tuesday. She also has a new album out this week named Picking Up the Pieces.

By the time she was a teenager, she was out on her own. Her father had become physically abusive, so she moved into a cabin with no running water, hitchhiked her way about the country and reconnected with her mom in San Diego.

She ended up moving in with her.

“I was paying the rent and just working in a coffee shop and then in a computer warehouse,” Jewel says. “And my boss took me out to dinner 1 evening. I realized halfway by way of the dinner that he was propositioning me.”

Never Broken

Jewel grew up bar-singing, so she was employed to the whole routine. She joked about it, turned him down and moved on. Her boss didn’t even look that upset.

“My rent was due the next day and so I went in for my paycheck and I walked into my boss’ office, I was like, ‘Hey, I am right here for my paycheck.’ And he never would appear up from his papers — he ignored me. And it became extremely clear very speedily that he wasn’t going to give me my paycheck. And that he obviously was quite mad that I did not sleep with him, that I turned him down.”

She was humiliated. With no paycheck, rent would be late — again. She knew her landlord would kick them out this time.

Her mom suggested they begin living in their vehicles.

“So that’s what we did,” Jewel says. “We every lived in our separate cars. I had a little Datsun hatchback. We did that for awhile and then she ended up going back to Alaska and I ended up staying behind in San Diego.”

Jewel was just scraping by back then, and had kidney problems. She couldn’t hold a typical job due to the fact she’d get sick so frequently. And then the vehicle she lived in was stolen, so she became homeless for a year.

“To be that desperate, that down-and-out, I was suffering from agoraphobia, I had been shoplifting, I truly wasn’t performing nicely,” Jewel says. “And I began just baring my soul in these songs and speaking about my worst shame and my worst fears.”

She figured that if she could not hold a standard job, possibly she could book gigs at nearby venues.

“I began writing a lot of songs so that I would have a whole set’s worth of material,” she says. “My big break was at a coffee shop named the Inner Modify in San Diego.”

Jewel performing her weekly show at the Inner Change coffee shop in San Diego in 1993.

Jewel performing her weekly show at the Inner Change coffee shop in San Diego in 1993. Courtesy of Jewel hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Jewel

The owner, a woman named Nancy, desperately needed clientele since she was going out of enterprise. She told Jewel she could play a show there each and every week and get what ever income they made at the door.

The initial evening, only a couple surfers showed up. But word spread.

“A lot more and a lot more people came and after a couple months, it was sort of packed,” Jewel says. “Three or 4 months far more, it was standing space only and three or 4 months a lot more, it was individuals spilling out and standing in the pouring rain just to watch me by means of a window.”

That is when record labels took notice.

“When labels began coming down to see me and hearing about me, these limousines would show up and it was like being Cinderella,” she says. “It was an amazing thing and I ended up obtaining a bidding war following me. Every single label in the entire country wanted to sign me. It was quite extraordinary.”

She ended up signing with Atlantic Records. Her debut album, Pieces of You, was released in February of 1995.

“You recognize that so a lot of good results, no matter whether it is private happiness or career, is genuinely just about not providing up,” she says. “It’s about who has the grit to hold standing. And that is what my life’s been about. It’s brought me to my knees once more and once again.

“I generally invited my fans to say, ‘I’m on a journey of trying to figure my life out. And if you guys are on the same journey, let’s do this with each other.’ “

Arts &amp Life : NPR