Wednesday, April 11

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Leonard Cohen Unplugged

A profile from his days living as a mountain monk in Southern California.

Tuesday, April 10

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KFC's Big Game of Chicken

How KFC brought fried chicken to China and Africa as U.S. sales slumped.

Sunday, April 8

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Ring My Bell

A history of the cell phone ringtone.

Many recent hip-hop songs make terrific ringtones because they already sound like ringtones. The polyphonic and master-tone versions of “Goodies,” by Ciara, for example, are nearly identical. Ringtones, it turns out, are inherently pop: musical expression distilled to one urgent, representative hook. As ringtones become part of our environment, they could push pop music toward new levels of concision, repetition, and catchiness.

Saturday, April 7

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Art for Everybody

On the empire built by “Painter of Light” Thomas Kinkade.

Tuesday, April 3

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All We Read Is Freaks

Teaching Emily Dickinson at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Florida.

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God & Worshipper: A Rock-and-Roll Love Story, of Sorts

He’s their hero, but he’s also their soulmate, the one person in the world who understands them. That’s why Stephen Wesley and the legions of fans like him can’t get enough of the Mountain Goats. And that burden is crushing Darnielle.

On the passionate relationship between fans and John Danielle of the Mountain Goats.

Monday, April 2

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Speaking in Tongues

A literary exploration of Obama’s voice.

Sunday, April 1

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Bruce Springsteen's SXSW Keynote Address

Delivered at the Austin Convention Center on March 15, 2012.

In the beginning, every musician has their genesis moment. For you, it might have been the Sex Pistols, or Madonna, or Public Enemy. It's whatever initially inspires you to action. Mine was 1956, Elvis on the Ed Sullivan Show. It was the evening I realized a white man could make magic, that you did not have to be constrained by your upbringing, by the way you looked, or by the social context that oppressed you. You could call upon your own powers of imagination, and you could create a transformative self.

Saturday, March 31

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Ink, Inc.

How reality TV has changed tattooing.

Tattoos and tattoo artists have an undeniable power to attract, repulse, and intimidate. But when confronted with all this life and color, reality TV steamrolls it into the familiar “drama” of preening divas and wounded pride. “Everybody thinks they’re gonna change it,” said Anna Paige, an artist who said she’d turned down her chance at TV stardom. “Everybody thinks they’re gonna have some power.” But wait, isn’t she profiting from tattooing’s mass appeal? “I would have made money anyway.”

Friday, March 30

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Can Wine Become an American Habit?

One man’s dream to turn America into a post-prohibition wine utopia.

Thursday, March 29

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Kurt Vonnegut: The Art of Fiction No. 64

This interview with Kurt Vonnegut was originally a composite of four interviews done with the author over the past decade. The composite has gone through an extensive working over by the subject himself, who looks upon his own spoken words on the page with considerable misgivings . . . indeed, what follows can be considered an interview conducted with himself, by himself.

Tuesday, March 27

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