Arts & Life

Music
6:45 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

Aboriginal Sounds On Vermont Streets

Michael "Tree" Sampson plays the didgeridoo on the streets of Burlington, Vt.
Kirk Carapezza for NPR

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 3:54 pm

Vermont: Land of maple syrup, ski slopes, covered bridges and snow-capped mountains. Few people would associate the Green Mountain State with the didgeridoo, a wind instrument native to Australia. Until they've heard Michael "Tree" Sampson, that is.

Sampson's a one-man band who performs daily on Church Street in downtown Burlington.

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
6:44 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

Weekend Special: Curious Kazakh Gopher Not Curious About Nearby Spaceships

YouTube

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 8:10 am

How he got to live there, I don't know. For one thing he's a gopher, not a cosmonaut or a rocket engineer, just an ordinary Kazhakh rodent who dug himself a hole. The hole, however, is smack in the middle of a rocket launching facility, one of the most active spaceports in the world, called the Cosmodrome.

Read more
Monkey See
6:34 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

'Free Bates': The Third Season Of 'Downton Abbey' And More From PBS

Hugh Bonneville, who plays the Earl of Grantham on Downton Abbey, shows his feelings during the press tour presentation Saturday night.
Rahoul Ghose PBS

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 9:19 am

Yesterday was the first day of the Television Critics Association press tour, when TV reporters and critics descend upon Beverly Hills to hear about what's to come in the next six or eight months. We'll hear from all the big broadcast networks and most of the big (and not-so-big) cable outlets, but we're starting this year with PBS.

Candidly, not all the critics are showing up for PBS — not all of them write about it very much. It's a shame, though, because yesterday may have been, on the whole, the liveliest day I've ever had at press tour.

Read more
Monkey See
12:58 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

Not Funny Enough? 'New Yorker' Gives 'Seinfeld' Cartoon A Second Chance

"I wish I was taller," was Elaine's caption in the 1998 episode of Seinfeld. Can it get funnier than that? You can try over on The New Yorker's Caption Contest page.
Courtesy The New Yorker

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 1:43 pm

In its final season, the TV sitcom Seinfeld did a send-up of the cartoons in The New Yorker. The magazine's comics are distinctive – short, quippy, topical, understated. Simply put, they're smart.

Maybe too smart, sometimes, and that's what the character Elaine found when she got her own cartoon published in the magazine.

Read more
Religion
12:37 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

Alabama Bishop Won't Allow Blessing of Gay Unions

Rt. Rev. Kee Loan, Alabama's Episcopal Bishop
dioala.org

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) —

An Episcopal bishop in Alabama says he won't allow priests in his diocese to bless same-sex unions for the time being.

Bishop Kee Sloan voted in favor of creating a new blessing for same-sex couples in July during a national convention of the Episcopal Church. Sloan's diocese is part of the larger Episcopal denomination, which claims roughly 2 million members.

Read more
Author Interviews
7:05 am
Sun July 22, 2012

An 'Unlikely Pilgrimage' Toward Happiness

Before her debut novel, Rachel Joyce acted in London's Royal Shakespeare Company, and wrote more than 20 plays for BBC Radio 4.
Fatimah Namdar

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 1:43 pm

Rachel Joyce's novel The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry is about a man who very suddenly, with no warning or planning, sets off on a pilgrimage from the very southernmost part of England to the very northernmost part. It's a old-fashioned pilgrimage: He walks all the way, talking to the people he meets, on his way to the bedside of his old friend Queenie, who is dying.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:02 am
Sun July 22, 2012

'Who's On First?' The Sign Language Version

A screen grab from the MLB video, "Costas and Seinfeld on Network."
MLB

Originally published on Sun July 22, 2012 1:43 pm

Abbott and Costello's famous "Who's on First?" routine still stands as one of the greatest comedy sketches of all time. It was a feat of rapid-fire dialogue, flawless comedic timing and devastating wit.

But could you do it without saying a word?

The answer appears to be yes. After Jerry Seinfeld broke down the classic skit on the MLB Network recently, NPR's Mike Pesca wound up with a peculiar email in his inbox.

It was a link to an American Sign Language (ASL) version of the skit, sent by a friend. It was amazing, Pesca says.

Read more
Music Interviews
5:58 am
Sun July 22, 2012

Janet Feder: An Avant-Garde Artist Takes A Real Risk

Janet Feder built a career on unusual instrumental guitar playing. Her new album, Songs With Words, will feature her singing for the first time.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 10:46 am

Janet Feder does things to her guitar.

"If I play the second string with nothing on it, it sounds like this," Feder says, plucking out a note. "Just a pure pitch."

Read more
Deceptive Cadence
4:58 pm
Sat July 21, 2012

Around The Classical Internet: July 20, 2012

"Sonochromatic cyborg" and artist Neil Harbisson — with the implanted device that converts color to sound — at his TED talk in Edinburgh last month.
James Duncan Davidson courtesy of TED

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 4:58 pm

  • Remember the interview with "sonochromatic artist cyborg" Neil Harbisson? He was born without the ability to see any colors at all, but his prosthetic eyepiece translates color into sound — and he has started reinterpreting music visually through his new perceptions of color, as in his painting based on Mozart's "Queen of the Night" aria.
Read more
Arts & Life
7:45 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Mayor Stubbs

Wikipedia

The mayor of Talkeetna, Alaska, is celebrating fifteen years on the job, which is pretty much his whole life. 

*****************************************************

Read more
A Blog Supreme
7:33 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Around The Jazz Internet: July 20, 2012

Eddie Palmieri was named a 2013 NEA Jazz Master this week.
Juan L. Cruz Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 6:11 pm

Sorry for the radio silence. More activity soon. Until then:

  • The 2013 NEA Jazz Masters were announced: Eddie Palmieri (pictured), Lou Donaldson, Mose Allison and Lorraine Gordon. All receive $25,000 and will be honored in a January 2013 ceremony. Four is the fewest number of awardees since 2004, but the program was slated to be cut in the first place last year, so ...
Read more
Around the Nation
6:35 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Man-Volvo Love Story May Hit 3 Million-Mile Mark

Host Scott Simon talks with 72-year-old Irv Gordon. His 1966 Volvo P1800S needs about 30,000 more miles to reach the 3 million-mile mark. His license plate reads, "MILNMILER."

Books
5:06 am
Sat July 21, 2012

Get Revved Up: London Cabbie Picks Olympic Reads

Black taxis drive through London. Weekend Edition knows one London cabbie who treats reading like an Olympic sport.
Pierre-Philippe Marcou AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat July 21, 2012 6:35 am

At the end of July, thousands of visitors will descend on one of the great literary landscapes of history for the London Olympics. And if they're lucky, they may find themselves getting a ride from a man who drives for a living, but lives to read. London cabbie Will Grozier occasionally joins Weekend Edition to discuss what he's been reading. Lately, he's been thinking about books for the London Olympics visitor — reads that put both the games and the host city in context. He shares his recommendations with NPR's Scott Simon.

Read more
The Picture Show
1:38 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

Fighting For Photos Of The Tour De France

James Startt Courtesy of Bicycling magazine

Originally published on Fri July 20, 2012 3:55 pm

One of the first times photographer James Startt recalls seeing Lance Armstrong was during the 1992 Olympic trials as the two rounded a corner together. Startt, an avid cyclist, says he only came close to Armstrong once during the tryouts.

Read more
13.7: Cosmos And Culture
10:38 am
Fri July 20, 2012

Novels For The Science-Attuned Brain

Ah, New Jersey!
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 9:00 am

By the time this post goes up, I'll be vacationing in New Jersey. (No jokes please!) My destinations are Springsteen Country and the beach, or as we say in my home state, The Shore.

Novel-reading on the beach is one way I'll relax. During some future fantasy vacation, I'd love to do nothing but read, inhaling a book a day.

Read more

Pages