Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

An image of writers Clare Beams and April Ayers Lawson
Kristi Jan Hoover/Jason Ayers

When writing a short story, an author must be swift and succinct. A short story does not allow a plot the same amount of breathing room compared to a novel. Writers April Ayers Lawson and Clare Beams welcome the immediacy inherent in a short story as they integrate intimate and engaging tales into their work.

An image of Peter Lamb and the Wolves with Maceo Parker
Peter Lamb and the Wolves

For their latest album, "Carolina Tiger Milk," Triangle-based jazz group Peter Lamb and the Wolves invited some of North Carolina's most prominent musicians.

The band's guest  lineup includes vocalist Django Haskins of The Old Ceremony, saxophonist Maceo Parker and members of the Mint Julep Jazz Band.  

Amin Drew Law is a Palestinian-American poet and educator based in Washington D.C. In his poem, "The Secret Weapon of Chubby Boys," Amin taps into a classic schoolyard conflict and provides a hilarious and heartwarming solution. 

On this bonus episode of Stories with a Heartbeat, we reflect on some of the classroom conflicts we covered in season 1 of the podcast. From the first days of elementary to college graduation, we explored the spectrum of friction at school. This week we hear from poet Amin Drew Law with a new, potent, and poetic reminder of school conflict. 

A drawing of a cigarrette butt.
Julienne Alexander / Criminal

On the last Criminal podcast, we heard from Melinda Dawson. She learned as a girl that her parents had secretly purchased her from a man called Dr. Hicks at his Georgia clinic. Dawson and her mother, Judy, became outspoken about the realities of life as a so-called "Hicks Baby."

FLOTUS album cover
Merge Records / Merge Records

It's rare when an established band with a recognizable sound makes a big change. But that's what Lambchop has done with it's new recording For Love Often Turns Us Still, or FLOTUS

Lead singer and songwriter Kurt Wagner has electronically treated most of his vocals and made room for drum loops and other audio treatments on songs inspired by the sounds he heard coming from his neighbors and recent records from Kendrick Lamarr, Kanye West and Frank Ocean.

A Well-Tested Thanksgiving Menu

Nov 4, 2016
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Copyright 2016 America's Test Kitchen (Carl Tremblay)

A Complete Thanksgiving Menu from America's Test Kitchen,

This year, The Splendid Table's new partner, America's Test Kitchen, joins us at the Thanksgiving table. We are delighted to present a full menu created by America's Test Kitchen that takes the guesswork out of planning a memorable holiday. And coming from America's Test Kitchen, you know these recipes have been tested and reworked to perfection. Enjoy!

Beers for the Thanksgiving Table

Nov 3, 2016

Steven Beaumont, author of The Premium Beer Drinker's Guide, suggests beer as an alternative to all the angst over which wines will go with turkey and all the trimmings. Here are three he recommends:

Lambic Gueze from Cantillon Brewery in Brussels: This beer equivalent to champagne is often made with fruit, it's crisp, and is the only beer that's spontaneously fermented. It's wonderful with food.

The Wisconsin Belgian Red from New Glarus Brewing Company in New Glarus, Wisconsin: This cherry beer is fruity, but not sweet.

Cover image for Death Faire
Courtesy of Tami Schwerin

Death and spirits are part of conversations this week more than most other times of the year. On Monday, many donned costumes of ghosts and goblins to celebrate Halloween, and yesterday others around the world gathered for festivals and celebrations to mark the first day of El Dia de Los Muertos, a Mexican holiday that honors the dead. But talking about death and dying is usually more taboo. While everyone experiences grief, illness, and death, these experiences are often kept private, discussed only with close friends and families.

Dom Flemons with good friend and mentor Bill Ferris
WUNC

Meet Bill Ferris

On the first Sunday of every month, Bill Ferris attended an African-American church on the farm where he grew up. Over time Ferris, a white child, became a routine presence at the church. He especially loved participating in the church’s communal singing. "I learned the hymns, and I just felt very emotionally close to that world," Ferris tells American Songster Radio host Dom Flemons.

Cover Image from ‘Resisting Arrest Poems To Stretch The Sky,’ a new anthology of poetry about police aggression against people of color.
Jacar Press

Does a smile help defend against potential police aggression? What is a mother’s role in protecting her child from a dangerous situation? A new collection of poems, “Resisting Arrest Poems to Stretch the Sky” (Jacar Press/2016), explores these questions through the work of more than 70 writers.
 

Life Pig

Nov 1, 2016
University of Chicago Press

In two new books, writer and professor Alan Shapiro explores themes of convention, pain and self-expression. “Life Pig” (University of Chicago Press/2016) is his latest book of poetry and “That Self-Forgetful Perfectly Useless Concentration” (University of Chicago Press/2016) is a new collection of essays. Host Frank Stasio speaks with Shapiro, the William R. Kenan Jr.

An image of Nicole Sarrocco
Jason Hedrick

For Nicole Sarrocco, experiences with the supernatural are nothing new. As a child growing up on a tobacco farm on the border of Wake County, she knew that her family's land was filled with spirits. 

 

She went on to live in multiple haunted houses, and encounters with ghosts seemed to follow her wherever she went. Sarrocco has since worked to come to terms with the occult and channeled these experiences into a novel. 

 

 

Happy Halloween from WUNC Music! We'll be celebrating with a spooky mix of Halloween themed music in the mix for one day only. Here's 13 of the ghoulish tunes you'll hear today. Enjoy!

potsandpans.jpg
The Splendid Table

Every month, the Splendid Table helps listeners equip their kitchens and fill their pantries.

This month, we're giving away 14 Ballarini Como Forged Aluminum 10-piece nonstick cookware sets, a retail value of $299.99!

Set includes:

Image of Mount Moriah
Lissa Gotwals

North Carolina Public Radio has a new music stream.  It's a place where you can discover new songs and get a taste of the local music scene. 

One song that's in the mix right now is called "Higher Mind" by the Durham based band Mount Moriah.  Heather McEntire says it's one that she wrote while on a cross country drive with her dad.

A picture of Sylvan Esso.
Sylvan Esso

Here's the latest in our occasional series  called Songs We Love.  It's a look at the stories behind the songs we're playing on WUNC Music.  That's the new music stream from North Carolina Public Radio.  (WUNC's Songs We Love is also available as a podcast.)

John Paul White
Allister Ann / Sacks and Co.

Today we launch WUNC's Songs We Love Podcast. It's where we look at the stories behind some of the songs in rotation on our 24-hour music discovery stream, WUNC Music.  

One song that's in the WUNC Music mix right now is "Black Leaf" by John Paul White.  

White used to be in the band The Civil Wars but has since branched out on his own. His song "Black Leaf" is one recorded for his solo album "Beulah."

In this first podcast, Eric and John Paul talk about music inspiration, song writing and more.

Screenshot from the 1961 cult film 'Hercules in the Haunted World' showing a male character hovering over a woman laying on a slab
SPA CINEMATOGRAFICA

It’s a battle oft overlooked by the history books, but North Carolina Opera is paying tribute to the epic battle between Hercules and vampires in their new live-film event.
 

Are food critics still necessary?

Oct 28, 2016
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Weedezign/Thinkstock

With the rise of Yelp, just how relevant are food critics? Sally Swift asked one of the best, Tom Sietsema of the Washington Post.

Sally Swift: I want to talk about the role of a food critic these days. Is it a viable job with everything that goes on on the Web and everyone weighing in? What is your take?

Image of chicago alderman
Courtesy of Michael Karlik

With fewer than 15 days until the election, it is nearly impossible to avoid conversations about politics. While some Americans may be tempted to unplug their televisions until it is all over, comedian Michael Karlik is doing exactly the opposite. Michael Karlik is a Colorado-based writer who is actively seeking out conversations about civics and government from every corner of America.

A new exhibit at The Carrack Modern Art Museum in Durham features works from three generations of the Belans family. It includes photography by the late Herbert A. Belans reinterpreted and repurposed by his granddaughter, photographer and artist Leah Sobsey.  Linda Belans, Leah’s mother and Herbert’s daughter, links the works with her poetry. Host Frank Stasio speaks with Leah Sobsey and Linda Belans about how an inheritance of old film negatives turned into a multi-generational family art collaboration.

Elizabeth Hadfield, Steven Petrow and Matthew King
Rebecca Martinez / WUNC

With less than two weeks to go before we elect a new president, a third of the US Senate and the entire House of Representatives, it sure is a nasty, beat-'em-up, free-for-all on my social media feeds, especially Facebook and Twitter.

Beth Dooley on The Joy of Cooking and the future of wheat

Oct 27, 2016
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ygrek/Thinkstock

Author and restaurant critic Beth Dooley talks with Lynne Rossetto Kasper about what drove her to write about food, how she adapted to Minneapolis from her native New Jersey, and a new type of wheat that may change the future of farming.

Lynne Rossetto Kasper: I understand that when you were in school in New Jersey, you would secretly tuck The Joy of Cooking into your bag, pull it out, and hide it during study hall as you read it.

Beth Dooley (Photo: Mary O'Brien)

Marcus Samuelsson's Harlem

Oct 26, 2016
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Butch Fisher

Marcus Samuelsson takes The Splendid Table's Melissa Clark on a personalized tour of Harlem, the neighborhood he has called home for over a decade.

[Ed. note: You can read the second half of our interview with Marcus here.]

Melissa Clark:I am so excited to talk to you about Harlem, which is also dear to my heart. I want to hear how it's dear to your heart. Can you take us through a tour of your Harlem?

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Maxim Fesenko/Thinkstock

New York Times cocktail writer Robert Simonson's book, A Proper Drink, looks at the origins of the ongoing cocktail renaissance and the bartenders who rescued classic drinks from obscurity. He tells The Splendid Table's Joe Yonan about the lost ingredients (and supermodels) that inspired them, and why the cosmopolitan is so controversial.

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