NPR Staff

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Turning It Down: Cities Combat Light Pollution By Going Dim

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Bright lights are part of a city's ecosystem. Think of Times Square or the Las Vegas Strip or right outside your bedroom window.

Electric lighting is ubiquitous in most urban and suburban neighborhoods. It's something most people take for granted, but appreciate, since it feels like well-lit streets keep us ...

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Time Rules In Jamaica Kincaid's New Novel, 'See Now Then'

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Author Jamaica Kincaid is out with a new novel, her first in 10 years.

Kincaid is perhaps best known for her books At the Bottom of the River and The Autobiography of My Mother. Her new book, See Now Then, tackles some difficult themes.

The novel opens with a scene ...

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At 100, Composer Margaret Bonds Remains A Great Exception

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Margaret Bonds, who died in 1972, is perhaps near the top of the very short list of African-American female composers. Thanks to her partnerships with Langston Hughes and soprano Leontyne Price and others, she's remembered in some circles as an important figure in American composition. But, mostly, she's been forgotten.

...

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Secretly Working To Win The War In 'Atomic City'

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Before the fight to win women equal footing in the workplace, there was the fight against Hitler and Hirohito. In the depths of World War II, everyone in America had to pitch in, men and women alike. And in 1943 the government offered war jobs, lots of them, in a ...

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Film Hoists 'Hava Nagila' Up Onto A Chair, In Celebration Of Song And Dance

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Whether you love it or you hate it, you know it: "Hava Nagila." Maybe you grew up listening to Harry Belafonte's rendition, or found yourself in a chair being hoisted into the air by a singing crowd at your wedding or bat mitzvah. The kitschy Jewish standard lends itself particularly ...

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Robyn Hitchcock: 'Rock 'N' Roll Is An Old Man's Game Now'

Sunday, March 03, 2013

Robyn Hitchcock turns 60 this weekend. The British singer and guitarist has traveled a long way to this point, beginning in the 1970s as the frontman of proto-punk group The Soft Boys and continuing through a solo career that has produced hundreds of songs. He's even appeared in ...

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For Ireland's First Female President, 'Everybody Matters'

Saturday, March 02, 2013

For seven years, Mary Robinson served as the first female president of Ireland. Yet, she also has a long record of service as a human rights advocate.

After leaving office in 1997, she was appointed as the High Commissioner for Human Rights at the United Nations. She now runs

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Rhye: Men Of Mystery Find A Feminine Sound

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Last year, an unknown band called Rhye started posting exquisitely produced videos online. The clips were sexy — erotic even — and the music matched the images. The identities of the band members were a mystery, intentionally shielded from view.

Listeners started wondering: Who is that woman singing? Why don't ...

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By A Record Collector's Curiosity, The Relatives Return

Saturday, March 02, 2013

In 1970, brothers Gean and Tommie West, both reverends, started a gospel group together in Dallas. They called themselves The Relatives, pressed a few singles and amassed a good following.

By 1980, The Relatives had gone their separate ways, and for three decades that was that. But a few years ...

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Pink Floyd's 'Dark Side,' 40 Years Later

Saturday, March 02, 2013

It begins with a heartbeat. Released in 1973, The Dark Side of the Moon was Pink Floyd's eighth studio album. It would become one of the best-selling albums of all time, and its iconic cover image still hangs in college dormitories everywhere.

The record turned 40 this week. ...

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'Born On A Mountaintop' Or Not, Davy Crockett's Legend Lives On

Saturday, March 02, 2013

There's a new book about an American hero that's not just about the man behind the myth, but about the myth behind that myth.

Davy Crockett really was from Tennessee, really was a skilled frontiersman and really killed American Indians in battle. (When he became a congressman, however, he opposed ...

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Emmylou Harris And Rodney Crowell: Staying Low

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Almost 40 years after their first collaboration, Emmylou Harris and former bandmate Rodney Crowell are back with a new album of duets. Old Yellow Moon includes Crowell originals as well as revivals of songs by Roger Miller, Patti Scialfa and

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A 'Negative' Message: Don't Just Hope, Work

Saturday, March 02, 2013

A few names come to mind when you say Hoosier basketball: Larry Bird, Gene Hackman, who was in a movie — and Bob Knight, about whom they make movies. Bob Knight coached three Indiana University teams to three NCAA championship titles and — a record of which he's equally proud ...

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Latina Sisters Aimed High, Defying Low Expectations

Friday, March 01, 2013

When Linda Hernandez was growing up in Lincoln, Neb., in the 1960s, her family was one of the few Latino families in town. And that sometimes made school life difficult, she says.

"We had to sit in the back of the class and stay after school and clean the erasers ...

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Lady Lamb The Beekeeper Emerges From Behind The Counter

Thursday, February 28, 2013

When Aly Spaltro began writing music, she was literally the girl next door. After recording 12 solo songs with her 8-track, she left a stack of free CDs on the counter of the local record store next to the DVD rental shop where she worked in Brunswick, Maine. Nervous about ...

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The Case For Being Concise: Short Poems That Speak Volumes

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Brad Leithauser likes to look for poetry in graveyards. A novelist and poet himself, there's something he values greatly in tombstone epitaphs: brevity.

"You really don't want to go on at great length," he tells NPR's Neal Conan. "There's something very touching ... in seeing how they are meant ...

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Dictionary Of Idioms Gets Everybody On The Same Page

Thursday, February 28, 2013

If you've ever shot the breeze, had a heart-to-heart or bent somebody's ear — in fact, if you've ever talked at all — odds are you've used an idiom. These sometimes bizarre phrases are a staple of conversation, and more than 10,000 of them are collected in the latest edition ...

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Richard Thompson: The Acoustics Behind 'Electric'

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Guitar players will hear the pure, ringing tones conjured by 10 fingers that seem to be doing the work of 20 and say, "Oh, for sure — that's Richard Thompson."

That nimble guitar work frames songs that are like perfectly crafted short stories, often dark and biting. Thompson ...

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The Floacist: A Soul Poet Says Yes To Moving On

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Natalie "The Floacist" Stewart is best known for her role as half of the British neosoul duo Floetry. Along with her bandmate and childhood friend, Marsha "The Songstress" Ambrosius, Stewart released three albums as Floetry and earned seven Grammy nominations.

After Floetry broke up in 2006, ...

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And The Oscars Go To...

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Best Picture

ARGO

Amour

Beasts of the Southern Wild

Django Unchained

Les Miserables

Life of Pi

Lincoln

Silver Linings Playbook

Zero Dark Thirty

Best Actress

JENNIFER LAWRENCE -Silver Linings Playbook

Jessica Chastian - Zero Dark Thirty

Emmanuelle Riva -Amour

Quvenzahane Wallis - Beasts of the Southern Wild

Naomi Watts -The ...

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