Durham

Mike Birbiglia
The artist

Comendian Mike Birbiglia is headed to the triangle this weekend, for a gig at the Carolina Theatre.

Mike's film  Sleepwalk with Me won the audience award at Sundance in 2012. It was co-written by This American Life's Ira Glass.

The movie stars Mike and is about his own life -- trying to be a comic, and discovering he is a sleepwalker.

The stories are true, and they are really funny.

A member of the Pop Warner football league, the Durham Eagles (NC)
Center for Documentary Studies, Duke University

How much money does your family spend on sports? Do you spend hundreds each your on a traveling team for a middle schooler? Perhaps your child plays in more than one of these competitive leagues. How about a private conditioning coach? How much is too much?

There's an intriguing new project about the topic. It's called Contested, and it features families in Durham, NC.

>>Browse the multimedia site.

StoryCorps

StoryCorps, a national oral history project, has collected more than 50,000 interviews across the country. 

A picture of Sylvan Esso.
Sylvan Esso

Sylvan Esso's eponymous album is full of catchy tracks, ripe for getting stuck in your head. "Coffee" is hypnotic, with a droning vibe that's infectious and profoundly danceable.

The Durham-based duo filmed much of the music video for "Coffee" in Carrboro months back.

Singer Amelia Randall Meath designed the video to explore different kinds of dance parties. She  is a fervent fan of contra dancing, which kicks off the video and inspired the lyrics. Meath taught band mate Nicholas Sanborn to dance for the occasion.

Godi Godar (right) with a man from the Lac Tumba region, DRC
Godi Godar

Godi Godar lives and works in Durham, NC. He's a mechanic there. That's kind of amazing since Godar had never seen a car until he was in his 20s.

Godi grew up in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). There was no running water or electricity in his town, Ikoko Bonginda. (Ikoko is in the Congolese rainforest, several hundred miles upriver from the DRC's capital, Kinshasa.)

Godi recalls seeing electricity across the lake, where the missionaries were.

"I remember saying, 'Wow, look at the lights there!' It was a trip."

Mike Roig preps his piece, Twist of Fate
Bull City Sculpture Show

    

Sculptures are often the trademark of a place:  Chicago has Cloud Gate, Indianapolis has LOVE and Durham has the Bronze Bull. Sculpture can truly embody a city.

This week the Bull City Sculpture Show comes to Durham, displaying 12 national works across the city.

The show is presented by Liberty Arts, a non-profit foundry and 3-D sculpture studio in Durham.

Musician Captain Luke (right) is 88-years-old. He talked with Music Maker Relief Foundation's Tim Duffy
StoryCorps

The StoryCorps Mobile Booth opens today. The first very first interview was between the musician Captain Luke Mayer, and Tim Duffy of the Music Maker Relief Foundation.

Captain Luke has a wonderful deep rich baritone. He came to music early in life. Music Maker has documented the story of his life and music:

A picture of the Durham Bulls mascot with the Merge Records logo.
Merge Records

It's a big year for Merge Records. The Durham-based label is celebrating its 25th birthday with a series of events, which has included concerts, limited release recordings and a 25K run.

Mac McCaughan and Laura Ballance founded the label in Chapel Hill to promote their band, Superchunk. A quarter-century later, dozens of other celebrated artists have jumped on board, including the Grammy-winning Arcade Fire.

A picture of Bill Bell at a podium.
durham.gov

Durham Mayor Bill Bell has set in motion his campaign to reduce poverty. 

Bell said Durham has a lot of resources: good universities, a creative class, and a growing number of jobs. He believes that by using UNC Center for Urban and Regional Studies data about distressed neighborhoods, surveying residents, and planning area specific solutions, this push could make a difference.

“Poverty is an issue that I think we should be able to deal with in this community in a much more collaborative way than we're doing now,” said Bell.

The band Boneslinger will play at the event.
Boneslinger

Mardi Gras kicks off this weekend in both New Orleans .. and Durham, NC. Durham's celebration has been growing over the last couple of years. There will be a big parade on Fat Tuesday (March 4) starting at the bronze bull on CCB Plaza at 6 p.m., followed by eight bands performing on five stages.

The weekend begins though, with a celebration called "Hey Pocky Way- A Mardis Gras Primer."

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