Radio: Dead or Alive? A Conversation with Live Wire! Host Luke Burbank
Luke Burbank's radio career has taken him from dive bars and strip clubs to some really seedy places, like Capitol Hill, which he covered as NPR's congressional correspondent. Now, as the host of Portland's weekly public-radio variety show, Live Wire, he is a walking, talking contradiction: he wants to turn Live Wire into the next Prairie Home Companion (though really, really different), but he also thinks radio is dead. Burbank will explore the future of (public) radio and his plans for Live Wire. He’ll also reveal how much of a diva Carl Kassell is when the mic is off.
In addition to hosting Live Wire, Burbank is a panelist on NPR's news quiz Wait Wait … Don't Tell Me, a contributor to This American Life and CBS Sunday Morning, and the host of the podcast Too Beautiful to Live, which averages two million downloads each month. Burbank has the distinction of being the only public-radio host who has had to have a tattoo of an ex-wife's name laser-burned off his arm. Well, except that one tattoo Robert Seigel had to have removed. Which, apparently, Burbank’s legally not supposed to talk about.
Read our profile of Burbank and Live Wire from our January issue.