Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

Leonard Rogoff

Gertrude Weil spent her life fighting for civil rights in the South. She founded the state's League of Women Voters and campaigned against lynching and segregation. She cleverly navigated the fault lines that marked politics in North Carolina in the early 20th century. In new the book, "Gertrude Weil: Jewish Progressive in the New South" (UNC Press/2017), Leonard Rogoff exposes the roots of Gertrude Weil's activism.

An image of Russian composer Peter Tchaikovsky
Public Domain

19th-century Russian composer Peter Tchaikovsky is considered one of the most popular composers in history. However the man behind ballets like “Swan Lake” and “The Nutcracker” had a secret that clouded his personal life. Even though he never publicly came out, Tchaikovsky was gay. His sexual identity influenced his work and may have contributed to his mysterious and sudden death.

Sound Opinions: Review Round-Up

Apr 13, 2017

Hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot give their take on several of the biggest new records, from Spoon to Mastodon, in this Review Roundup. Plus, a conversation and performance with Scottish duo Honeyblood.

Nina Berman

Nina Berman has been capturing stories as a professional photographer since the late 1980s. She is best known for her photos capturing military culture and veteran issues in the wake of Sept. 11. She documented the militarization of American life with the collection “Homeland” and told the stories of wounded veterans in “Purple Hearts- Back from Iraq.”

Toxic burden

Apr 13, 2017

At a time when environmental protections are under more threats than ever, Reveal visits minority communities facing toxic burdens.

Tell Us About Your Party Fouls!

Apr 12, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

Nasher Musuem of Art

 Nina Chanel Abney was drawn to art at an early age. As a kid growing up in Chicago, she stayed busy by doodling and making collages with comics in the newspaper. As she got older, her work began to take on more political themes, including racism, police brutality and the impact of social media. The exhibition “Nina Chanel Abney: Royal Flush” features about 30 of Abney’s paintings, watercolors and collages.

Lucinda Devlin

For more than 40 years, photographer Lucinda Devlin has captured unique scenes across the country. Her images are social commentaries on things like the death penalty and agribusiness. The exhibit "Lucinda Devlin: Sightlines" spans Devlin's career and features 83 of her photographs.

www.abigaildowd.com

After working in city politics, and running an art school, Abigail Dowd needed a change. She packed up her great-grandfather’s guitar and took off to Florence, Italy, to Ireland, and later to Maine, to spend some time reconnecting with herself and her music. The trip turned into an eight-year journey.

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Lopez, Kristina

Ah salt. It’s the magical seasoning that brings out flavors and spices in food and makes it palatable. We were talking about this around the office, and realized we didn’t know much about how salt does what it does.

To fix all that, Rico sat down with Eric Schulze, a science writer and Senior Scientist at Memphis Meats in the Bay Area. They’re developing cruelty-free meat grown in a lab.


Ambient air pollution levels projected onto a Hargett Street building in downtown Raleigh.
Courtesy of particlefallsral.org

A traveling art installation in downtown Raleigh is showing passersby how much pollution is in the air around them.

Sound Opinions Fundraiser: Going Solo

Apr 10, 2017

This is a special fundraising edition of Sound Opinions hosted by Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot. This episode features Jim and Greg's collection of songs from artists known for being in a band who went on to made a successful solo record. Features the music of Lauryn Hill, Peter Gabriel, Morrissey, Justin Timberlake, and more.


There are three (3) episode segments plus an optional billboard to be aired sequentially during the Sound Opinions hour. Pitch time has been allotted.

A picture of Mike Doughty
Rachelandthecity / Chartroom Media

Songs We Love is a series and a podcast that looks at the stories behind some of the songs we're playing on our new music discovery stream, WUNC Music.

On this episode, Eric Hodge sits down with Mike Doughty to talk about his song "Brian" from the album The Heart Watches While The Brain Burns.

"Brian" is a based on an East African beat, and Doughty goes in depth discussing how his travels to the region influenced his songwriting.

Listen to the episode here:

WUNC's Back Porch Music On The Lawn For 2017

Apr 9, 2017
Back Porch Music on the Lawn Logo
WUNC / American Tobacco

The days are getting longer and the weather's warming up.  It's that time of year again for WUNC's Back Porch Music On The Lawn.

The free outdoor concerts, an annual Triangle tradition, are held beneath the Lucky Strike water tower at American Tobacco Campus in Durham.

We've got eight great shows for your spring and summer Thursday evenings. All shows begin at 6 p.m.

Alex Kapranos DJs a Globe-Trotting Party Playlist

Apr 7, 2017

Alex Kapranos is the frontman of the beloved Scottish dance-pop band Franz Ferdinand and a member of the new supergroup of sorts called BNQT. The band includes Ben Bridwell of Band of Horses and Jason Lytle of Grandaddy. Their new album comes out later this month.

We actually caught up with Alex the last time Franz Ferdinand dropped a record and he gave us a soundtrack with international sounds.

R.M. Hubbert (with Aidan Moffat and Alex Kapranos) – “Car Song”

The Many Voices of Hank Azaria

Apr 7, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

Hank Azaria has had a huge career with character roles in films like “The Birdcage” and TV shows like “Ray Donovan” and many more. But he’s probably best known as the voice behind a slew of character on “The Simpsons,” including Moe, Chief Wiggum, and Apu.

His latest TV project finds him back in front of the camera: he stars in “Brockmire,” a comedy about a disgraced, old-school baseball announcer attempting a comeback after a public meltdown goes viral.

Aimee Mann-splains Etiquette

Apr 7, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

Each week you send us your questions about how to behave, and here to answer them this week is Aimee Mann.

In the ‘80s, her band Til Tuesday hit the charts with the now classic song, “Voices Carry.” She’s since become a hugely respected solo artist with Grammy and Oscar nominations under her belt. She also recorded and toured with fellow pop maestro Ted Leo.

The Mountain Faith Band

For more than 15 years, the Mountain Faith Band has performed Americana and bluegrass across the country. The group mostly consists of the McMahan family from Sylva, North Carolina. Members of the family grew up playing bluegrass while they worked together in their dad’s tire shop. Today the group is well known for their 2015 appearance on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”

The Oxford English Dictionary recently added the phrase 420 to its pages. This week's Criminal podcast investigates the origin of the word. Host Phoebe Judge interviewed the dictionary editor charged with finding the word's history and the two men who claim they invented the phrase.

Sound Opinions: Conversation With Mavis Staples

Apr 6, 2017

As a member of her family group The Staple Singers and as a solo artist, Mavis Staples has used her huge voice to power the Civil Rights Movement and inspire generations. The gospel and soul legend joins hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot for an intimate discussion of her life and career.

Harper Collins Publishers

In her debut novel “No One Is Coming To Save Us” (Ecco/2017) Stephanie Powell Watts tells the story of an African-American family living in small-town North Carolina. The book features a young man named J.J. Ferguson who returned to his hometown to impress his high school sweetheart. Watts channels the literary classic “The Great Gatsby” as well as her experiences growing up Lenoir, N.C.

If you can't afford a lawyer

Apr 5, 2017

If you can’t afford a lawyer, one will be appointed to you – that’s how it’s supposed to work. But in New Orleans, the lawyer in charge of representing poor people accused of crimes is saying no. His office doesn’t have enough money or time to do a good job, he says, so he’s refusing some serious cases, which is jamming up the courts and leaving hundreds of people stuck in jail with no lawyer. His goal? To break the system in order to fix it. Reveal follows up on this story that we first brought you last fall.

slim, white-haired Abby Abinanti stands looking serious on a misty hill
Courtesy of Anne Makepeace

In Native American communities, poverty, drugs and the school-to-prison pipeline mean few second chances for those who commit crimes.

Two tribal judges in California are taking a different approach: Abby Abinanti and Claudette White are using restorative justice techniques to rehabilitate offenders and keep families together.
 

An image of doctoral student A.D. Carson
Ken Scar

Hip-hop music has long been revered for showcasing nuanced messages about marginalized communities. Nas’ 1994 debut studio album “Illmatic” is praised as a seminal, lyrical portrayal of life in New York City. Meanwhile, Beyonce’s 2016 album “Lemonade” was heralded for its powerful messages about black feminism. Works like these achieved large commercial success, but what happens when hip-hop extends beyond the airwaves and into the academy? 

Martini Madness: And the Winner Is…

Apr 3, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

After a month-long battle that pitted cocktail against cocktail (and host against guest co-host at the end) the polls have closed and the winner of the Martini Madness bracket has been crowned.

And the winner is…

Gin and Tonic!
How did the G&T pull off this win?

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Lopez, Kristina

UPDATE: Find out which cocktail won Martini Madness here.

Usually in the show, Brendan and Rico tell you something that happened this week in history, then pair it with a fitting boozy beverage. But this week, we’re doing something different.

The mystery of Mountain Jane Doe

Mar 31, 2017

Investigators dig up an unidentified murder victim, 45 years after she was buried, in an attempt to give her back her name. The exhumation leads to a series of unexpected revelations about who she was and why she may have been killed. Her case speaks to the complexity – and importance – of opening up cold cases. This is one story of thousands from the crisis of America’s unidentified dead.

Prentice Penny Swaps Politeness for Public Embarrassment

Mar 31, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

Each week you send us your questions about how to behave, and here to answer them this time around is Prentice Penny.

He’s the showrunner for HBO’s Golden Globe-nominated series “Insecure.” He also wrote for network comedy shows like “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Scrubs,” and “Happy Endings.” And on his new show, he steps in front of the camera.

Jens Lekman DJs A Middle Eastern Dance Party

Mar 31, 2017
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Lopez, Kristina

Swedish musician Jens Lekman has become a legend in the indie world for his wry, alternately hilarious and heartbreaking pop tunes. Last year, he challenged himself to write a song a week… some of which evolved into tracks for his new album, “Life Will See You Now.” It’s his first record in five years.

Here’s Jens with a playlist mailed from the other side of the world.

Ahmed Fakroun – “Yumma”

Usman Dadi

The Pakistani ensemble Sounds of Kolachi blends South Asian melodies with western classical compositions, jazz arrangements and more. Host Frank Stasio talks with Ahsan Bari, co-founder of the group, about the band’s origins and influences.

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