Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 12:02 pm
All summer long, Weekend Edition has been sampling the sounds of America's street musicians. The latest to catch our ear is Alexis Dawdy, a young violinist who returned to her hometown of Lansing, Mich., to study at Michigan State University — and do a little busking on the side.
"I'm actually not a music major. This is really a hobby that accidentally became a profession," Dawdy says. "I'm studying linguistics, and I'm 17 credits out from graduation. My goal is to do it debt-free, and this helps a lot. This pays for books and this pays for food."
More than half a century ago this week, on Aug. 12, 1958, some of the greatest jazz musicians of the day assembled in Harlem at what was, for them, the ungodly hour of 10 a.m. Fifty-seven players came to East 126th Street to have their picture taken for Esquire magazine.
Even the strongest among us get the blues: You can't get out of bed, you don't want to talk to a single other humanoid, and you just want to close the curtains and turn on the music. The songs you choose for those miseries have to be just right.
Adam Brent Houghtaling is something of a connoisseur of the melancholy moment. Perhaps to cheer himself up, he's put that expertise to use by producing a kind of encyclopedia of the best soundtracks for lonely days and nights. It's called This Will End in Tears: The Miserablist Guide to Music.
Carmelita Jeter of the U.S. points at the time board as she crosses the finish line to win the women's 4x100 meter relay at the Olympic Stadium on Day 14 of the London 2012 Olympic Games. The U.S. set a new world record by finishing the race in 40.82 seconds.
Credit Franck Robichon / EPA/Landov
Carmelita Jeter of the U.S. points at the time board as she crosses the finish line to win the women's 4 x 100 relay on Day 14 of the London Games. The U.S. set a new world record by finishing the race in 40.82 seconds.
Credit Franck Robichon / EPA/Landov
Szabolcs Zubai of Hungary shoots over Magnus Jernemyr of Sweden during the men's handball semifinal.
Credit Jeff Gross / Getty Images
Dzhamal Otarsultanov of Russia (in red) and Vladimer Khinchegashvili of Georgia wrestle during the men's freestyle 55-kilogram gold medal match. Otarsultanov won the event.
Credit Feng Li / Getty Images
The team from Italy performs during the rhythmic gymnastics group all-around qualifications.
Credit Gregory Bull / AP
Latvia's Maris Strombergs leads the competition during the BMX cycling men's final. Strombergs won his second straight Olympic gold medal.
Credit Christophe Ena / AP
Egypt competes in the team synchronized swimming free routine final.
Credit Al Bello / Getty Images
Maartje Paumen (center) of the Netherlands celebrates after a goal during the women's field hockey final against Argentina.
Credit John MacDougall / AFP/Getty Images
Meseret Defar of Ethiopia celebrates winning gold in the women's 5,000 meters.
The London Summer Olympics are winding down, and by most accounts, the games have been a success. There were plenty of "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" moments; big, enthusiastic crowds — although there were too many blocks of empty seats; and for those who like a helping of scandal served up at their Olympics, there was that, too.
It wasn't the usual scourge of doping. Instead, the London Olympics had incidents of bending the rules and ethics of sport.
Originally published on Fri August 10, 2012 4:55 pm
After serving as speaker of the House, publishing several historical novels and running for president, what's next for Newt Gingrich?
One possible third act, Gingrich told NPR staffers on Friday, could be sharing a television studio with his wife, Callista.
"We're kind of intrigued with the idea of doing a daily show, which would change our lives pretty dramatically," Gingrich said. "But if we do it, we want it to be closer to Regis and Kathie Lee than to Bill O'Reilly or Hardball."
Now to London and some of today's Olympic results. Several American athletes picked up gold. At least one U.S. team that was expected to get gold did not and another team set a world record. NPR's Mike Pesca is in London with the details. And, Mike, let's start with track and field and the women's 4x100 relay, a sport where women - the U.S. women tend to dominate in that event. How about today?
MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: More than dominate, world record.
Kinesio tape has caught the eye of many an Olympic viewer the last two weeks — covering the muscles of volleyball players, javelin throwers, even swimmers. It was invented decades ago by a Japanese chiropractor. Athletes say it eases muscle strain and allows healing, but research has yet to prove the effectiveness of the tape. Melissa Block talks with Amy Powell, a sports medicine doctor at the University of Utah about the tape.