Frank Stasio

Host, "The State of Things"

Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.

From there he went to National Public Radio, where he rose from associate producer to newscaster for All Things Considered. He left that job in 1990 to help start an alternative school in Washington, DC. Frank returned to NPR as a freelance news anchor, guest host of Talk of The Nation and other national programs, and host of special news coverage.

He also presents audio theater workshops for children and teachers and conducts radio journalism workshops for broadcasters in former Soviet-bloc countries. He lives in Durham.

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State of Things
12:19 pm
Fri September 9, 2011

John Vanderslice

Hopscotch Music Festival
Credit hopscotchmusicfest.com

San Francisco indie musician John Vanderslice is well-known for his exhaustive, comprehensive, and lengthy approach to recording music. Legend has it that Vanderslice spent 4,000 hours working on one album. But his latest studio effort called “White Wilderness,” a collaboration with the Magik*Magik Orchestra, was completed in just three days to the surprise of fans and music critics. Vanderslice is in North Carolina to perform at the 2nd annual Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh.

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State of Things
11:46 am
Thu September 8, 2011

9/11 Ten Years Later

This Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, and Americans will be inundated with commemorations. Amidst that flood of images and stories, how can people find an intimate and meaningful way to reconnect with the events of a decade ago? At the same time, is there a collective way to memorialize a tragedy that changed the country, but changed each of us in different ways? What roles are played by artists, scholars, and theologians?

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State of Things
11:29 am
Wed September 7, 2011

Drug Use and Sex Trafficking

NC Harm Reduction Coalition
Credit nchrc.net

Decades after the beginning of the war on drugs, America's desire for illicit substances has not abated. North Carolina has become a hot spot of both drug activity and sex trafficking, and state leaders are coming together to address the problem. The conference, “Reducing Harm and Building Communities: Addressing Drug Use in the South," will be held in Durham tomorrow and Friday at RTI International. Host Frank Stasio talks about drug use, sex work, and the conference with Jill Brenneman, a Raleigh sex worker and program coordinator for Sex Workers without Borders; Robert Childs, executive director of the NC Harm Reduction Coalition; and Lieutenant Colonel Marty Sumner, deputy chief of the High Point Police Department.

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State of Things
11:07 am
Wed September 7, 2011

Rethinking Aging

Dr. Nortin Hadler
Credit unchealthcare.org

Dr. Nortin Hadler says the human body has an end date – about 85 years old – and thinking you’re going to live much beyond that is mostly wishful thinking. But the health care industry wants to convince you otherwise, he says. They want you getting heart bypass surgery in your 80s, being treated for cancers that won’t kill you and worrying about a host of problems that aren’t as dangerous as they seem.

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State of Things
1:22 pm
Tue September 6, 2011

Fresh Buzz for the Charlotte Hornets

NBA
Credit www.nba-live.com

Before North Carolinians became Caniacs or Panthers’ fans, back when NASCAR was the only professional sports most Tar Heels cared about, the Charlotte Hornets enjoyed a few seasons in the sun. A new video game from 2K is celebrating the legacy of the 1992/93 Hornets. Host Frank Stasio talks about the new game and the old team with Owen Good, who writes about sports video games for Kotaku, the video game site of Gawker Media, and Dane Huffman, who covered the Charlotte Hornets for The News & Observer in Raleigh.

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State of Things
1:15 pm
Tue September 6, 2011

Dark Tangos

Dark Tangos
Credit www.lewisshiner.com

Lewis Shiner’s latest novel is a blend of historical fiction, romance and crime, and it all revolves around tango. Protagonist Rob Cavenaugh is a recent transplant to Buenos Ares. On the dance floor, he falls in love, but his relationship exposes him to Argentina’s dark history. Thousands of citizens disappeared in the country’s dirty war, and Rob’s new crush was somehow involved. Host Frank Stasio talks with Shiner about his new novel, "Dark Tangos" (Subterranean Press/2011).

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State of Things
1:10 pm
Tue September 6, 2011

Daughters of the Dust

Daughters of the Dust

Filmmaker Julie Dash made history with her movie, “Daughters of the Dust.” In 1991, it became the first full-length feature by an African-American woman to receive a general theatrical release. The critically acclaimed movie tells the story of the Peazant family, a clan of Gullah Island dwellers who are divided by the decision to leave their isolated life and move to the mainland. “Daughters of the Dust” will be screened at The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University on Thursday as part of the new “Seeing Black” film series.

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State of Things
10:10 am
Fri September 2, 2011

The Foreign Exchange

The Foreign Exchange
Credit www.theforeignexchangemusic.com

While a young Phonte Coleman was growing up listening to the soulful sounds of artists like Luther Vandross and Chaka Khan in Greensboro, NC, Nicolay Rook was being reared on a similar catalog of musicians in the Netherlands. That musical kinship drew Coleman and Rook to each other on okayplayer.com, an online hip-hop message board, in 2002. The two never met in-person until after they’d put the finishing touches on their critically-acclaimed first album, “Connected.” Today, their band, The Foreign Exchange, boasts three albums, a record label imprint and a Grammy nomination. Rook has since relocated to Wilmington, NC to be closer to his bandmate, but he and Coleman continue to work through a long-distance relationship.

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State of Things
12:09 pm
Thu September 1, 2011

Speed Drummer

worldrecordsacademy.org
Credit worldrecordsacademy.org

Eric Okamoto is a percussion teacher in Cary, NC who has brought drumming to new heights. Since he won his first speed percussion competition in 2003, Okamoto has continued to top the list of the world's fastest drummers. He just broke more records at a competition in Nashville, Tennessee in July.

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State of Things
11:55 am
Thu September 1, 2011

Supreme Love for John Coltrane

John Coltrane
Credit www.john-coltrane.com

In recent years, High Point, NC has come to embrace the legacy of one of its most famous former residents, jazz legend John Coltrane. This weekend, the town will host the first John Coltrane International Jazz and Blues Festival. Coltrane spent his youth in High Point, where he learned to play the clarinet and the saxophone. Host Frank Stasio talks about Coltrane's early life and his music with John Brown, director of the Duke University Jazz Program; Bruce Davis, a member of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners and co-chair of the Friends of John Coltrane committee; and Edith Brady, director of the High Point Museum.

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