Kidnapped by Somali pirates, journalist Michael Scott Moore spent two and half years in captivity. At times he was held on land, other times at sea. Once, when he was on a 160-foot tuna boat, he tried to escape by jumping over the side at night.
The film tells the true story of Richard Phillips, whose container ship was hijacked by Somali pirates in 2009. Navy SEAL sharpshooters eventually freed the captain from the small lifeboat where he was held hostage for five days. Tom Hanks stars in the film, which is directed by Paul Greengrass.
Tom Waits, Patti Smith, Marc Almond, Marianne Faithfull, Shane MacGowan and others appear on a new two-disc compilation of pirate ballads and sea songs called Son of Rogues Gallery. Here, Terry Gross talks with Hal Willner, the project's producer, about some of the stories behind the project.
Last April, Merchant Marine Capt. Richard Phillips became the first American seaman to be captured by pirates in two centuries. After attempting to escape, Phillips was beaten and bound by his Somali captors. Five days later, Navy SEAL snipers killed the pirates and rescued Phillips. His new memoir, A Captain's Duty, recounts the ordeal.
Writer, explorer, and deep-sea diver Barry Clifford's new book is The Lost Fleet: The Discovery of a Sunken Armada from the Golden Age of Piracy (William Morrow). The lost fleet was a group of French ships that sank in 1678 on the reef of Las Aves island, 100 miles off the Venezuelan coast. The fleet, as well as a small pirate army, was shipwrecked. The event launched "the golden age of piracy" that plagued maritimers for 50 years. Clifford researched the disaster and was part of the team that located the armada. Clifford's previous book was Expedition Whydah.