ROCK ‘N’ ROLL’S ‘CREEM MAGAZINE’ IS BACK IN PRINT AND ONLINE ~ NPR

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DANNY HENSEL

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Creem Magazine, which covered rock ‘n’ roll from the late 1960s to the late 1980s, is returning: first as a digital magazine with full archives, then in the fall as a quarterly print publication.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: 

After 33 years, Creem is coming back. That’s Creem, the music publication, which calls itself America’s only rock ‘n’ roll magazine. After fits and starts, Creem is returning as a digital magazine, and in the fall, it’ll be a quarterly in print. NPR’s Danny Hensel has the story of a Detroit institution.

MARGARITA ENGLE EXPLORES WHAT IT’S LIKE TO BE AN OUTSIDER IN ‘SINGING WITH ELEPHANTS’ ~ NPR

June 1, 2022 

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Portrait of Children's book author, Margarita Engle, 2019 NSK award winner for World Literature Today

The Cuban American author Margarita Engle explores what it’s like to be an outsider in her new middle-grade novel Singing with Elephants.

the cover of 'Singing with Elephants'

Viking Books for Young Readers

Oriol, her 11-year-old Cuban-born protagonist, leaves the island nation as her family makes the move to Santa Barbara, Calif. She’s learning English. Her playmates are the animals at her parents’ veterinary clinic. When she befriends the diplomat Gabriela Mistral, who also happens to be the real-life winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, her world opens up even more. 

Engle tells Morning Edition she wanted to imagine how it would feel for a child to live near an accomplished poet and to wonder if she could write poetry too. Singing with Elephants is told in verse.

~~~ CONTINUE READING/LISTENING ON NPR ~~~

BOEBERT SUPPORTERS THREATEN RESTAURANTS FOR HOSTING CAMPAIGN STOPS BY DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE ~ KVNF

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TrinidadSmokehouse.jpeg
Supporters pose for a photo with candidate Adam Frisch at Trinidad Smokehouse on May 6, 2022.

Adam Frisch is one of three Democrats on the June primary ballot for the Third Congressional District hoping to challenge Republican Lauren Boebert in the November election. Over the weekend he kicked off his Beat Boebert BBQ Tour with stops at nearly a dozen restaurants from Pueblo to Grand Junction. Unfortunately, tensions arose at a variety of stops with a law enforcement response necessary in Trinidad and visits in Pueblo, Montrose, and Grand Junction were moved after restaurants allegedly received threats from Boebert supporters. Sarah Shook is campaign manager for candidate Adam Frisch.

SEN. BOOKER SPEAKS TO THE LOVE THAT BRINGS JACKSON TO THE VERGE OF THE SUPREME COURT ~ NPR

March 23, 2022

CLAUDIA GRISALES

In moving remarks, Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said he was emotional at the nomination of Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson, and expressed frustration with the tone of the questions some of his GOP colleagues asked on the third day of Jackson’s confirmation hearing.

Booker said on Wednesday during the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that Jackson — who would be the first Black woman on the Supreme Court — is an extraordinary testament of what can be accomplished against the odds.

“I want to tell you when I look at you, this is why I get emotional,” said Booker, the only Black member of the Senate committee and one of only three Black senators. “I’m sorry — you’re a person that is so much more than your race and gender.”

Booker noted that Jackson is a Christian, a mother and an intellect and that she has a love of books.

Jackson and others in the audience wiped away tears as Booker spoke. He also became emotional at times.

~~~ WATCH ~~~

He noted in one example how the film Hidden Figures finally elevated recognition for the work of Black women behind the NASA program, and also mentioned Jackson’s parents’ patriotism, even though their country “didn’t love them back.”

“All these people loved their country,” Booker said.

“You faced insults here that were shocking to me — well, actually not shocking,” he said. “But you are here because of that kind of love, and nobody is taking that away from me.” 

As the panel wrapped up the third day of hearings on Wednesday, Majority Leader Dick Durbin announced that the committee planned to meet in executive session on Jackson’s nomination March 28. The panel’s rules allow for any committee business to be held over for one week, which could push the vote to April 4. 

The committee will resume the confirmation hearings again Thursday, the fourth and final day, to hear from witnesses.

Tom Waits Collection on Letterman, 1983-2015

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WATCH

Tom Waits is so refreshingly out of his mind! He has always been one of my all time favorites! A true original American out of his flipping mind musical and creative genius.

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I am impressed with his speech. He speaks so well; simple, direct, and eloquent. Nothing in his converstion is extravagant, every word tells, exactly what he wants to say. You can tell he is highly intelligent. Just an exceptional talent.

ABC Tried to Bury This James Baldwin Interview

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WATCH ~ 10 MINUTES

Buried by ABC at the time, the segment has resurfaced over four decades later, revealing a unique glimpse into Baldwin’s private life—as well as his resounding criticism about white fragility, as blisteringly relevant today as it was in 1979.

THE LANDSCAPE ART LEGACY OF FLORIDA’S HIGHWAYMEN ~ NPR

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September 19, 2012

JACKI LYDEN

LISTEN· 11:48

Alfred Hair, Harold Newton, Al Black, James Gibson and Mary Ann Carroll were all part of the original Highwaymen.

Photos by Gary Monroe

If you traveled by way of Florida’s Route 1 in the ’60s and ’70s, you might have encountered young African-American landscape artists selling oil paintings of an idealized, candy-colored, Kennedy-era Florida. They painted palms, beaches, poinciana trees and sleepy inlets on drywall canvases — and they came to be known as the Highwaymen. The group made thousands of pictures, until the market was saturated, tastes changed, and the whole genre dwindled.

A Florida landscape painted by Alfred Hair, one of the original "Highwaymen"

The Highwaymen: Speed-Painting In The Sunshine State

Alfred Hair/Courtesy of Doretha Hair Truesdell/Gary Monroe

Roadside Innovation

The story of the Highwaymen is one of beauty and heartbreak. Their original — and perhaps most talented — artist was a young man named Alfred Hair. He founded the group when he crossed the color line to study with artist A.E. “Beanie” Backus, a friend of Hair’s art teacher. Backus encouraged him to paint. Hair went on to develop a speed-painting technique that involved tacking up multiple canvases into a kind of artists’ assembly line.

But when Hair was gunned down in 1970, the Highwaymen nearly disbanded.

Al Black was the group’s original salesman. He was the one responsible for getting so many of those glistening, still-wet paintings onto motel and office walls.

“He could sell a jacket to a mosquito in summer,” says Mary Ann Carroll, the group’s sole “Highwaywoman.”

After Hair’s death, the group fell on hard times, but Black kept at it. When he needed more paintings to sell, he just painted them himself. Then came drug addition and a 12-year prison sentence. Black spent his time in prison painting bayous and beaches. Scores of his paintings have helped transform the state’s jails.

THE PICTURE SHOW 

Gary Monroe: Highwaymen Historian And Unsung Photographer

Black and Carroll were eventually rediscovered by Gary Monroe, a Florida documentary photographer who exhaustively researched the group for his 2001 bookThe Highwaymen: Florida’s African-American Landscape Painters.

The Painter Behind It All

Today, some Backus loyalists feel the Highwaymen absconded with the painter’s vision, never giving him enough credit and surpassing him in fame, if not in talent. Kathleen Frederick, executive director of the A.E. Backus Museum and Gallery, has a harsh perception of the artists. She says they could never have painted as Backus did on private land because they would have “been run off and shot.”

That acrimony is not the legacy Backus himself would have left. He was, by all accounts, one of the most inclusive people the community knew.

The Highwaymen Today

NPR and Oxford American

This story was initially produced with Oxford American magazine for a collaborative series called Southword — a spotlight on the people, places and trends that shape the modern American South.

It’s a welcome discovery to learn that the majority of the self-taught Highwaymen still paint. According to the Florida Artists Hall of Fame, the group consisted of 26 painters, 18 of whom are still alive. Today, their paintings sometimes go for thousands of dollars and are collected by people like Steven Spielberg, Michelle Obama, Jeb Bush and a small army of private collectors.