Too Soon: Comedy After 9/11

In the face of immediate public loss and public mourning, how does a society know when it’s okay to return to normal interactions? And especially if you’re a professional comedian, how do you know when it’s no longer “Too Soon”? I was happy to be talking with Nick Scown, the director of Too Soon: Comedy After 9/11, a film about the aftermath of 9/11, and its impact on comedy and professional jokesters. Also joining Nick in the conversation are two comedians featured in the film, Maz Jobrani and Ahmed Ahmed.

Click the triangle or mp3 link above to hear the interview, as broadcast today on Arts Express on WBAI FM NYC, and Pacifica stations across the country.

A Hunger Artist: Franz Kafka

More and more today’s world is looking Kafkaesque, so I thought this week we’d go back to the original. The Franz Kafka’s short story, “A Hunger Artist,” was published in final form in 1924. In it, Kafka tells a tale that almost any artist today can identify with. Kafka edited the story on his death bed as he lay dying from tuberculosis at the age of 40.

Click on the grey triangle or mp3 link above to hear the story, which I adapted and performed, broadcast today on Arts Express on WBAI FM NYC and Pacifica affiliates across the country.

Secret Identity Uncovered

(Click to enlarge)

These little guys had me puzzled–so many sandpipers look alike to me! But when they did a short flight, they gave themselves away: their white rumps in flight marked them as–what else?–White-rumped Sandpipers. A first for me.

Plumb Beach

Brooklyn, New York

Dylan Rehearses “We Are The World”

I thought this was really fascinating: Bob Dylan, clearly out of his element, singing a song not his own, but wanting to contribute to this charity release. He seems to me scared, humble, and persistent. Fun seeing him around Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross, Lionel Ritchie and Quincey Jones.

Thanks to YouTuber b52careofcell44

Savior For Sale: Da Vinci’s Lost Masterpiece?

Some fifteen years ago the art world was aghast over what was called the biggest discovery of the 21st century: a newly found painting by Leonardo Da Vinci. Originally bought for about $1000, it eventually sold at auction for an astounding record breaking 450 million Euros. But was all what it seemed? Was the painting really by Da Vinci? And who was the mysterious buyer? And who were the shadowy middle men and agents taking their cuts? Was the whole art world just one large international scam operation?  In a fascinating new documentary film, Savior For Sale: Da Vinci’s Lost Masterpiece?  the full tangled story is explored. I was happy to interview the director and writer of Savior For Sale, filmmaker Antoine Vitkine.

Click the triangle or mp3 link above to hear my interview with Antoine, as broadcast today on Arts Express on WBAI FM NYC, and Pacifica stations across the country.

“A White Heron” by Sarah Jewett

This September we celebrate the birthday of author Sarah Jewett, who was born September 3rd, 1849. Her short stories and poetry were infused with local color and country life, but there are deeper themes running through her work as well: feminist critics have championed her writing for its rich account of women’s lives and voices, and ecologically minded critics have praised her works for her deep love of the natural world.

I adapted and performed on the radio one of her most famous stories, “A White Heron,” in which a young girl has to decide what’s most important to her in life.

Click on the grey triangle or mp3 link above to hear the story as broadcast today on Arts Express on WBAI FM NYC and Pacifica affiliates across the country.

The Speed Of The Sound Of Loneliness

With a song title like that, you know the rest of the song just has to be great.

John Prine, with accompaniment by Nanci Griffith who unfortunately died this month.

Thanks to YouTuber derek868