Arts/Culture

The Faith Middleton Show
11:00 am
Thu August 7, 2014

The New Science of Building Brain Power

Credit aJ Gazmen/flickr creative commons

For over a century, IQ scores have been viewed by scientists as placing an upper limit on what a person can ever achieve: a cognitive glass ceiling, a number tattooed on the soul.

Shattering decades of that kind of dogma, scientists began publishing studies in 2008 showing that “fluid intelligence”—the ability to learn, solve novel problems, and get to the heart of things—can be increased through training. But is it all just hype?

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Crime Fiction
10:58 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Mystery Writer Evokes The Sights, Sound And Grime Of 1970s New York

The Empire State Building shines while Greenwich Village remains dark during the 1977 New York City blackout.
Carlos Rene Perez AP

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 9:08 am

Crime fiction writer Lawrence Block lives in New York's West Village, in a stately art deco building overlooking Abingdon Square. He bought an apartment there decades before actress Jennifer Aniston did. (She sold hers shortly thereafter.) Block is 76, silver-haired and keen-eyed; and in his pastel shirt and khakis, he looks decidedly more Hamptons than downtown.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:07 am
Thu August 7, 2014

A Salute to Accordions!

Cory Pesaturo is a multiple award-winning accordion player from Rhode Island
Chion Wolf WNPR

Here are some songs from your life, "Backstreet Girl" by the Rolling Stones, "Joey" by Bob Dylan, "Road to Nowhere" by the Talking Heads, "Boy In The Bubble" by Paul Simon, "July Fourth, Asbury Park", better known as "Sandy" by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, "Wouldn't It Be Nice" by the Beach Boys. They all rely heavily on the accordion.

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Bluegrass
9:55 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Podunk Bluegrass Festival in the Land of Steady Habits

The Claire Lynch Band, a headline performer at the Podunk Bluegrass Festival.
Facebook

When you think of Connecticut, bluegrass music may not immediately jump to mind, but there is a bluegrass scene here in the Land of Steady Habits. Starting on Thursday night, fans will gather at the Hebron Fairgrounds in Hebron for the Podunk Bluegrass Festival. 

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The 38th Voyage
8:52 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Home From the Sea, the Charles W. Morgan Ends Historic Voyage

The CHARLES W. MORGAN approaches Chubb's Wharf at Mystic Seaport on August 6.
Mystic Seaport

The world’s last wooden whaling ship, the Charles W. Morgan, is back at her dock at Mystic Seaport at the end of her historic 38th voyage. 

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The Faith Middleton Show
11:16 am
Wed August 6, 2014

August Fun: Have a Clam Bake

Credit Arnold Gatilao/flickr creative commons

There's still some summer left and we have ideas for clam bakes, grilled shrimp, and cocktails, along with plenty of kitchen tips. We also have a great recipe for a portobello mushroom po' boy.

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Jazz Corridor
9:10 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Cyrus Chestnut Displays Piano Prowess at Prestigious Litchfield Jazz Festival

Cyrus Chestnut.
Cyrus Chestnut

Graced with the robust technique of a premier concert hall pianist, Cyrus Chestnut is totally absorbed in exploring and celebrating the seemingly unlimited sonic potential of his grand instrument, using its keyboard and pedals to generate resonant, thickly-textured, amazingly agile, nuanced orchestral effects. 

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The "Apparently" Kid
9:39 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

'Apparently' This Is The Funniest 5-Year-Old In America

"I don't watch the news because I'm a kid," Noah Ritter, 5, said in an interview at the Wayne County Fair in Pennsylvania. He went on to show that he belongs on TV.
YouTube

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 10:43 am

We can't resist passing along the phenomenon that is Noah Ritter, a young man who's taking the Internet by storm. The 5-year-old's interview at Pennsylvania's Wayne County Fair is a wonder of stream-of-consciousness, sprinkled heavily with one word: "apparently."

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Newport Jazz Festival
2:03 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Newport Jazz 2014 In Photos

Cécile McLorin Salvant performed two sets at Newport, including one for a main-stage crowd on the festival's sunny opening day.
Adam Kissick for NPR

Originally published on Thu August 7, 2014 10:50 am

The Newport Jazz Festival turned 60 this year, and expanded to three days to celebrate. Throughout last weekend, more than 45 bands performed at Fort Adams State Park in coastal Rhode Island, playing through abundant sunshine, pouring rain and anything in between.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:30 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Why Imagination Matters in Childhood

Technology can rewire your brain.
Credit digitalbob8/flickr creative commons

What happens in our early childhood has a lot to do with how we develop as humans. Dr. Paul Harris researches the role the imagination plays in helping children grow into healthy adolescents. He says we tend to think of the imagination as something divorced from reality, when in fact it is deeply intertwined with how we determine reality from fantasy.

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The Faith Middleton Show
10:26 am
Tue August 5, 2014

The Science of When We Laugh and Why

Credit Chris Huggins/flickr creative commons

Humor, like pornography, is famously difficult to define. We know it when we see it, but is there a way to figure out what we really find funny—and why?

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Television
3:39 am
Tue August 5, 2014

From 'Good Times' To 'Honey Boo Boo': Who Is Poor On TV?

The Evans family from Good Times. Bern Nadette Stanis is second from left.
The Kobal Collection

Originally published on Tue August 5, 2014 10:47 am

Like it or not, television has the power to shape our perceptions of the world. So what do sitcoms, dramas and reality TV say about poor people?

In life and on TV, "poor" is relative. Take breakfast: For Honey Boo Boo's family, it's microwaved sausage and pancake sandwiches; for children in The Wire's Baltimore ghetto, it's a juice box and a bag of chips before school; and on Good Times, set in the Chicago projects back in the 1970s, it was a healthier choice: oatmeal.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:38 am
Mon August 4, 2014

The Scramble: Diversity, Death, and Relatability

William Shakespeare
Credit unbekannt nach einem Gemalde--Carte de Visite / Wikimedia Commons

There are ways today in which our topics are interconnected. Actress and writer Mellini Kantayya, wants to talk about the issues of diversity in casting. One of our other topics involves the fallout from Ira Glass's recent tweet that "Shakespeare sucks." New Yorker writer Rebecca Mead joins us to discuss her article deploring the modern vogue for

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The Faith Middleton Show
10:08 am
Mon August 4, 2014

Mastering the Art of Quitting in Life, Love, and Work

Credit Kate Haskell/flickr creative commons

As we can see from a recent Planet Money story on NPR, millions of people are quitting their jobs each month, and Janet Yellen of The Fed thinks this is a good sign. She says if people are quitting in high numbers, that signals they're sure better jobs are available. In other words, a strong signal for the economy.

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Playtime!
12:07 pm
Sun August 3, 2014

Lego Releases Female Scientists Set, May Appease 7-Year-Old Critic

A product image shows the new Research Institute playset from Lego, which features women in roles as three scientists. In January, the company was criticized by a girl who said all its female characters were "boring."
Lego

Originally published on Mon August 25, 2014 12:10 pm

Months after a girl took the company to task for its female toy figures, Lego has released the Research Institute, a play set created by a "real-life geophysicist, Ellen Kooijman," the company says.

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History
2:58 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Putting History on the Map

Plan of the Town of New Haven With all the Buildings in 1748.
Drawn by James Wadsworth. Engraved by Thomas Kensett, 1806. The Connecticut Historical Society, 2012.312.1.

All maps are historical.  They represent specific moments in time and very quickly become out of date as new towns are incorporated, new canals or railroads or highways are built.  Some maps, however, are not only historical, but deliberately retrospective.  They represent a time other than the time in which they were made, sometimes a time within the living memory of the mapmaker, sometimes an historic era long past.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

A Conversation with Jazz Musicians Mario Pavone and Jimmy Greene; Transgender Youth

Tenor saxaphonist Jimmy Greene.
Chion Wolff.

Mario Pavone and Jimmy Greene are both veterans of Connecticut's jazz scene -- having grown up here, decades apart -- and both deciding to make the state their home.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

The Nose of the '90s Is Alive in Hartford

Theresa Cramer is a writer and the editor of E-Content Magazine, where she covers the world of digital media
Chion Wolf WNPR

Can you ever make sense of a whole decade? That's what the National Geographic Channel tries to do with its three-part documentary on the '90s. So we get Bill Clinton, the building of the internet, Waco, O.J., the Oklahoma City bombing, Prozac, Starbucks, Tanya Harding, Kurt Loder, In Living Color, Rodney King and Reginald Denny, Anna Nicole Smith, the rise of SUVs and NMA, the fall of the Walkman and Tamagotchis, the Great Gretzky... This is starting to sound like a Billy Joel song.

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The Faith Middleton Show
1:10 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

The Book Show: July 31, 2014

Credit A./flickr creative commons

Faith's motto on The Book Show is… Life is short, but it can be ever so wide.

Join Faith and her book buddies for a call-in show recommending terrific books to read in all categories. If you're in a book club, please tell us what you've read and enjoyed. And, hey, kids, we'd love to hear from you about books you love.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
12:06 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Handwriting Is So Yesterday

Lisa M Lanno on the Colin McEnroe Show.
Chion Wolff

The death of handwriting could be viewed as the end of a tyranny. Especially for those of us who were unable to learn penmanship. That includes me. I’m pretty sure that no teacher I ever had got training in how to teach cursive to a left handed person for whom the process really is radically different. I arrived at college to find halls full of desks from which a small writing area protruded from the right side. I often took two hour exams at those desks, scrawling essay question answers in a blue book with my body twisted around uncomfortably.

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New Haven
7:00 am
Thu July 31, 2014

A Jazz Bass Player Who Can "Call the Pitches"

Jeff Fuller

The New Haven Jazz Festival kicks off Thursday evening with an event honoring Connecticut musician/composer Jeff Fuller

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Jazz Corridor
12:33 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Crescent City Singer Charmaine Neville Struts Soulful Stuff at Springfield’s New Festival

Charmaine Neville performs at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
nojazzfest.com

Elated to be alive and once again playing at the top of her game after a debilitating, three-year struggle with a life-threatening brain condition, the whirlwind New Orleans singer/dancer and entertainer Charmaine Neville is looking forward to performing with her famous father, saxophonist Charles Neville, on August 9 at the first Springfield Jazz & Roots Festival in downtown Springfield’s historic Court Square.

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The Faith Middleton Show
10:05 am
Wed July 30, 2014

Lidia Bastianich: Salmon with Prosecco Sauce

Credit D. Robert Wolcheck/flickr creative commons

If it is the Lord who should be praised, then praise the Lord for Lidia Bastianich, one of the great chefs in America. She is always in service to the food, not her own ego, yet there is a self-contained sureness in her as she teaches on television and in her books. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Wed July 30, 2014

Evolving Damnation: The American History of Hell

Credit Gags9999 / Flickr Creative Commons

If you were dreaming up a new religion, maybe you wouldn't include the idea of hell. But in traditional forms of Christianity, even as they evolve, hell seems almost grandfathered in. They can't quit hell. Or can they? A 2013 Harris poll found that while 74% of U.S. adults believe in God, and 68% believe in heaven, only 58% believe in the devil and in hell, down 4 percentage points from 2005. Still, 58%! That seems like a lot.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:06 am
Tue July 29, 2014

Mid-Summer Music Merriment!

Credit Jukka Zitting / Creative Commons

The Avett Brothers are riding the crest of the modern Americana music wave. John Hall, after a stint in Congress, is back leading Orleans and singing a song so catchy that simply to mention it would glue it to your eardrums for the rest of the day. Glen Phillips is leading Toad The Wet Sprocket after a long layoff and successful Kickstarter campaign that launched their latest album, New Constellation.

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Capitol History
4:56 am
Tue July 29, 2014

Ghost Cats And Musket Balls: Stories Told By Capitol Interns

Interns who host tours on Capitol Hill, stopping at sites like the small Senate rotunda, don't always have their facts straight.
The Architect of the Capitol

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 11:04 pm

Every summer thousands of interns flood the offices of Capitol Hill. One of their primary duties is to give constituents tours of the famous buildings. They parade visitors from the rotunda to statuary hall, offering stories and anecdotes.

But while these intern tours provide a great deal of information, they are sometimes a little short on actual history.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
11:44 am
Mon July 28, 2014

The Scramble: How to Be a Guest on a Talk Show with David Rees

David Rees in "Going Deep with David Rees," on the National Geographic Channel
Credit National Geographic Channel

This hour's Scramble starts fun and gradually grows darker. We begin with David Rees, host of a television show in which he layers expertise onto simple acts like opening a door or making ice cubes. Its motto is "de-familiarizing the ubiquitous so as to increase our appreciation and wonder thereby." We can get behind that.

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The Faith Middleton Show
10:05 am
Mon July 28, 2014

Amy Bloom's New Novel, Lucky Us

Amy Bloom

Successfully erotic sex scenes are notoriously difficult to write, but novelist Amy Bloom has hit the jackpot in her new novel, Lucky Us, featuring one of the most glamorous orgy scenes of all time. The irresistibly steamy Hollywood party involves a roomful of stars and starlets dancing, flirting, and seducing in the old Hollywood of the 1940s.

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Code Switch
10:03 pm
Sat July 26, 2014

Dueling Markets Show Native American Art Is Big Business

An estimated 175,000 people travel to New Mexico in August to view Native American art.
Larry Lamsa Flickr

Originally published on Mon July 28, 2014 3:26 pm

The 93rd annual Santa Fe Indian Market is only a month away. It's the biggest and best-known destination for Native artists and Native art collectors on the planet, and this year, it's got competition — a new event called the Indigenous Fine Arts Market.

Native American art and culture is big business. If you don't believe that, look no further than the controversial or illegal sides of the market. If you've been paying attention over the last year, you've seen some lurid and fascinating headlines:

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Cities
10:03 pm
Sat July 26, 2014

When Cities Become Science, Where Does Art Fit In?

"Flower Power" by Icy and Sot on the back wall of Rochester's Good Luck restaurant.
Mark Deff Photography Courtesy of WALL\THERAPY

Originally published on Sat July 26, 2014 10:45 am

The race has started. It's going to be run fast and hard and it won't be over for a while. It's a race whose winner doesn't matter as long as someone, somewhere makes it to the finish line.

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