Arts and Entertainment

Remembrances
12:37 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

'Fresh Air' Remembers Comedian David Brenner

David Brenner performs at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas in 1981.
Las Vegas News Bureau AP

Originally published on Mon March 17, 2014 12:52 pm

Comedian David Brenner became a star in the 1970s, with the help of The Tonight Show. He made his first appearance with Johnny Carson in 1971 and returned to the show more than 150 times, often as the substitute host. He also had his own short-lived late night show in the mid '80s.

Brenner died Saturday at 78. He grew up in Philadelphia, where Fresh Air is produced, and spoke to Terry Gross in 1990.


Interview Highlights

On how he started doing observational comedy

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First Listen
10:03 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

First Listen: The Bad Plus, 'The Rite Of Spring'

The Bad Plus' new album, The Rite of Spring, comes out March 25.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed March 26, 2014 9:40 am

This is a recording of a jazz trio playing the score to a 101-year-old ballet. It is not a "jazzing the classics" record or a "fantasia on the themes of" sort of project. It is a band translating one of the landmark works in music history to piano, bass and drum set, and doing it as literally as possible.

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Music
5:40 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

Ambrose Akinmusire: 'Music Can Tell You What It Wants To Be'

Ambrose Akinmusire's latest album is the imagined savior is far easier to paint.
Autumn DeWilde Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 10:02 am

For a jazz trumpet player, you couldn't be more on top of the world than Ambrose Akinmusire. The 32-year-old is looking good on the cover of this month's DownBeat, and he's managed to please the jazz critics and connect with audiences.

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JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater
3:37 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Lionel Loueke Trio On JazzSet

Lionel Loueke.
Brantley Gutierrez Courtesy of the artist

Lionel Loueke was born in Benin, West Africa, in 1973. As a youngster, he sang and played percussion, but didn't really take up the guitar until the age of 17. Loueke was so gifted on the instrument that he was sent to study music at the Ivory Coast's Institute of Art. He continued on to the American School of Modern Music in Paris, where he turned heads, and in 1999 came to America on scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston.

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Arts and Entertainment
3:35 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

OMG! Scrabble To Add New Words To Its Dictionary

Scrabble board (We Are CS/Flickr)

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 3:12 pm

Every year the world’s major dictionaries unveil their new offerings, adding words that reflect new trends, technologies and fads. But Scrabble has long been a bastion of tradition.

Scrabble dictionaries are updated only every five to 10 years, and words vying for a coveted position between “aa” (a pointy rock found in Hawaii) and “zyme” (something that causes zymotic disease), must first go through an exhaustive process. That is, until this week.

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SXSW
4:11 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Live Tonight: Damon Albarn, St. Vincent From SXSW 2014

Credit NPR Music

NPR Music returns to Austin with a star-studded SXSW showcase, featuring Damon Albarn, St. Vincent, and Kelis, plus emerging rock band Eagulls and more. Watch the live webcast tonight, starting at 8:50 p.m. ET.

Watch the webcast here>

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Theater
3:21 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Road Between Broadway And Hollywood Isn't A One-Way Street

Rocky producer Bill Taylor." href="/post/road-between-broadway-and-hollywood-isnt-one-way-street" class="noexit lightbox">
Andy Karl stars in the musical adaptation of Rocky, the story of an underdog boxer who gets a shot at the world championship. "You have to honor, I think, the integrity of what the original film is, but not be constrained by it," says Rocky producer Bill Taylor.
Matthew Murphey Polk & Co.

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:14 pm

Rocky: The Musical. Really?

Producer Bill Taylor says even the show's creators didn't buy the idea at first. "If you speak to all of the authors and all of the creative team, their instinctive reaction, when first hearing about Rocky becoming a musical, ranges from incredulity to plain crazy," he says.

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All Songs Considered
12:30 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Hear Neil Young Explain His Pono Music Player At SXSW

Neil Young speaks about Pono, his new high-quality digital audio system, at SXSW.
Bob Boilen NPR

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 7:46 am

Neil Young wants to start a revolution against the MP3, against the CD, poorly made vinyl and poor audio quality in general. He wants people to hear the music the way it was made.

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Kitchen Window
7:06 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Spirited Sweets For St. Patrick's (Or Any) Day

Laura B. Weiss for NPR

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:37 am

On Saint Patrick's Day, often the first order of business is to raise a glass to the Irish with a frosty mug of green beer. You might also savor a slice of Irish soda bread, rich with raisins and caraway seeds, or tuck into a hearty dish of corned beef and cabbage.

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Arts & Entertainment
4:21 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

‘I’m Really Clara’: Musical Explores The ‘Flipside’ Of Oklahoma’s Patti Page

Credit Provided / Flipside: The Patti Page Story

Interview with UCO Director of Musical Theater Greg White

From the end of World War II to the mid-1950s – before the “Golden Age” of rock ‘n’ roll – classic pop ballads and carefully crafted novelty songs dominated the radio airwaves. 

Among the best-known of these clear-throated singers with a penchant for the dramatic was Oklahoma-born Clara Ann Fowler, who was billed as “The Singin’ Rage, Miss Patti Page.”

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