At 11 a.m. on a weekday, Calexico rehearses for its upcoming tour in a cramped studio on the south side of Tucson, Ariz. The stereotypical musician would just be getting up, but lead singer and songwriter Joey Burns has been up since dawn with his twin baby girls.
Trumpet player Jacob Valenzuela arrives late to the rehearsal — and that's because his washing machine broke and he had to deal with a small flood. Valenzuela grabs his trumpet as the band launches into "Splitter," the first single from Calexico's new album.
For a metro area of only about 3.5 million people, the Twin Cities region is unusual in the way it supports not one, but two world-class orchestras. Now, with looming deficits on the horizon and musicians' contracts at both the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra expiring Sept. 30, the Twin Cities may have two orchestras on strike.
We taped this week's show with half of us in D.C. and half of us — me and Trey, plus NPR's own Bob Mondello — in a studio in Toronto. Why? Because of the Toronto International Film Festival, which provides the front half of the show. Trey, Bob and I talk about a bunch of the films we saw, many of which you can see covered on the blog's TIFF '12 section.
One of the most interesting books I've read so far this year has been This Is How You Lose Her, by Junot Diaz. And there's a reason it's such a well constructed read — as NPR's Steve Inskeep pointed out — it took Diaz 16 years to write.
Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 6:22 pm
The controversial law that curbed the collective bargaining rights of public employees in Wisconsin has been struck down by Dane County Circuit Judge Juan Colas.
The law, if you remember, was championed by Gov. Scott Walker and it unleashed massive protests and even led to Democratic law makers to flee the state to forestall its passage. After it became law, union activists mobilized and triggered a recall vote, which Walker ultimately defeated.
Note: A shorter version of this story aired on your local member station.
Fifty years ago this month, Life magazine published its take on the 100 most promising young professionals of the midcentury. The special issue, titled "The Take-Over Generation," highlighted some of the "young movers and shakers of the country," Roy Rowan, the magazine's assistant managing editor at the time, tells reporter Richard L. Harris.
Parents take their children to School No. 103 on the first day of the new school year in Valencia, Spain, on Sept. 7. Spanish students, parents and teachers are feeling the pinch of the ongoing European debt crisis.
Credit David Ramos / Getty Images
Thousands of teachers and students demonstrate during a protest against education cuts on May 22 in Barcelona, Spain. Teachers are planning another strike for later in September.
Spain is slashing spending to try to avoid a European bailout, and one of the biggest victims of budget cuts has been public education. Schools across Spain reopened this week with bigger classes, fewer teachers and increased fees for things like school lunch and books — placing a heavy burden on many families.
Conchi Redondo blows kisses at her three daughters after dropping them off on the first day of school in Madrid, the Spanish capital. She smiles and waves at the girls, but privately, she's worried.
Stress on the job may raise your risk of a heart attack.
European researchers came to that conclusion after looking at the experience of nearly 200,000 people who took part in 13 different studies. The scientists found that people with stressful jobs had a 23 percent higher risk of heart attack than those whose jobs weren't pressure cookers.