Yo La Tengo wouldn't seem to be very rock 'n' roll, given that it's a very stable and long-lasting operation. Since 1991, the lineup has consisted of a married couple — drummer Georgia Hubley and guitarist Ira Kaplan, along with bassist James McNew — and all three play additional instruments as needed. Yo La Tengo has been with the same label, Matador, since 1993. But if the band lacks rock dramatics, I would argue that it knows as much about the modes and manners of rock 'n' roll as anyone who has ever played the music.
The debate over gun control continues to dominate the headlines. Meanwhile, the U.S. Senate doubles the number of African-American members by welcoming William 'Mo" Cowan. He replaces John Kerry. Host Michel Martin talks politics with Republican strategist Ron Christie and Keli Goff, political correspondent for The Root.
Singer-songwriter Angelique Kidjo was born in Benin, West Africa. Today, she lives in New York City and is widely considered Africa's greatest living diva.
For Kidjo, music provides an outlet for both activism and pleasure. "Those two things are part of my stability," she tells NPR's Michel Martin. "I need that. No human being has endless compassion, you need to replenish yourself, and I know that if I didn't have music, I'd go crazy."
Barrington Irving , a 23-year-old Jamaican-born pilot, at a news conference at Opa-locka Airport Wednesday, June 27, 2007, ending a three-month journey he said would make him the youngest person to fly around the world alone.
Credit Alan Diaz / AP
Irving returned to the Miami-area city he left March 23, 2007 in a Columbia 400 built of donated parts. He was optimistic his 27,000-mile continent-hopping trip aboard the "Inspiration" would live up to the plane's name and motivate young people _ especially minorities.
This Black History Month, Tell Me More is taking a look at African Americans in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) who are inspiring future generations.
Today, Barrington Irving shares how his sky high dreams became a reality. A chance encounter in his parents' bookstore put him on a path that would make him the youngest person and first African American to fly solo around the world.
Some people enjoy the Super Bowl commercials more than the football game. Host Michel Martin and Tampa Bay Times media critic Eric Deggans run through the best and worst ads; from senior citizens making late night trips to Taco Bell to nerds getting really sloppy kisses.
Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 6:21 am
When Wal-Mart calls, Herman Farris always finds whatever the retailer wants, even if it's yucca root in the dead of winter. Farris is a produce broker in Columbia, Mo., who has been buying for Wal-Mart from auctions and farms since the company began carrying fruits and vegetables in the early 1990s.
During the summer and fall, nearly everything Farris delivers is grown in Missouri. That's Wal-Mart's definition of "local" — produce grown and sold in the same state. In winter, it's a bit tougher to source locally.
Georgia Kolia, 63, has two adult children, both unemployed. She works as a volunteer distributing loaves of bread at the Agia Zonis Orthodox church soup kitchen for the poor in Athens, Greece, in April 2012.
Credit John Kolesidis / Reuters/Landov
Unpaid for five months, nurse Paraskevi Petropoulou holds her unpaid electricity bill outside the Ministry of Health in Athens during an anti-government protest on Sept. 28, 2012.
Greeks are feeling the squeeze. The social repercussions of three years of austerity measures imposed by international lenders are hitting hard. Thousands of businesses have shut down, unemployment is nearly 27 percent and rising, and the once dependable safety net of welfare benefits is being pulled in.
With further cutbacks and tax hikes about to kick in, Greece's social fabric is being torn apart.
Nowhere are cutbacks more visible and painful than in health care.
Originally published on Mon February 4, 2013 10:38 am
One of the Twitter hashtags devised by rabid Beyonce fans before last night's Super Bowl halftime show was religious in nature: #praisebeysus. Praise Beysus! This bit of hyperventilating resonated in interesting ways. Strutting into the very center of America's biggest television spectacle, the 31-year-old superstar intended to secure her place in the musical pantheon next to recent Super Bowl-approved legends Madonna, The Who, Bruce Springsteen and Prince.
Originally published on Mon February 4, 2013 9:38 am
Great blackout last night, right?
It's been clear for some time that substantially more people watch the Super Bowl than have the slightest interest in watching the actual football game. That's why there's such hubbub over the halftime show and the commercials — it gives non-football types something to pay attention to instead of football.
The Canadian mint stops distributing pennies on Monday. Canada stopped making one-cent coins last year to cut costs, since each penny cost 1.6 cents to make. Most stores will round out change to the nearest five cents.
If you can imagine, Twitter was on fire during the Super Bowl. But the Twitterverse really lit up when the lights went out at the Superdome. Predictably, someone created a Twitter account named SuperBowlLights, and there were tweets like this: Only need half the lights anyway, as only half the teams are playing - that's just mean. Many people tweeted that it must have been Beyonce who knocked out the lights with her electric half-time show
It's been almost a week since the first reports that a man had shot and killed a school bus driver, snatched a five-year-old boy off the bus and is holding him hostage in an underground bunker. Grief and the slow pace of negotiations with the suspect have frayed nerves in the close-knit, rural community.
A protester holds a petrol bomb during clashes with riot police after a demonstration against new austerity measures outside the parliament in Athens, Greece, on Nov. 7.
Credit Aris Messinis / AFP/Getty Images
Members of the Pakistani community in Athens carry the coffin of Shehzad Luqman, the victim of what appears to have been a racist attack, on Jan. 19. It's the latest in a wave of violence associated with the right-wing, anti-immigrant Golden Dawn party.
Originally published on Mon February 4, 2013 6:33 pm
Escalating political violence from both the left and right is raising fears of political instability in debt-burdened Greece. The conservative-led government is cracking down on leftist groups, vowing to restore law and order.
But the opposition says authorities are trying to divert people's attention from growing poverty and despair.
Take the latest explosion in Athens — a firebomb at a crowded suburban mall last month that slightly injured two security guards.
It now appears that the militants who stormed a gas plant in Algeria last month, resulting in the deaths of dozens of hostages, ultimately wanted to create a giant fireball by blowing up the plant. They just couldn't figure out how. David Greene talks to Adam Nossiter of The New York Times, who recently went to the plant and gathered accounts of some former hostages.
The movement to overhaul the nation's immigration system is gathering steam. A bipartisan group of senators and the White House have put forward proposals for comprehensive reform.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
Those plans would give undocumented workers a way to come out of the shadows and become legal. They would create a better system for foreigners who want come to the U.S. in years to come, and they would beef up border security.
This is MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
And I'm Renee Montagne.
President Obama is taking his campaign against gun violence to the country, beginning today with a trip to Minneapolis and a visit to that city's police department. Many police organizations favor tougher gun laws. The president leaves behind a new Congress that's getting down to business. And consuming most of lawmakers' time: the budget and the deficit.
Refrigerators, foam buoys and even ketchup bottles are piling up on Alaska's beaches. Almost two years after the devastating Japanese tsunami, its debris and rubbish are fouling the coastlines of many states — especially in Alaska.
At the state's Montague Island beach, the nearly 80 miles of rugged wilderness looks pristine from a helicopter a few thousand feet up. But when you descend, globs of foam come into view.