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Plotting The Right Path To A Job Matters More Than Ever In Today's 'College Economy'

TOPEKA — The glittery gold print on Cara Simon’s graduation cap begged — maybe only half-jokingly — for a break: “Can I take a nap now?” Toilsome college coursework may have kept the Wichita native up at night, but looking for a job won’t. Simon lined one up at an emergency room before even graduating — one of the benefits of earning a nursing degree. “It’s so versatile,” she said. “You can work in a million different places. You can work in any state. It’s exciting.”

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Sport Burger

Nov 5, 2010

I have found that most people like to talk about food.  If you can’t think of anything clever to say at a party, you can always break the social ice by asking people what they like to eat.  It’s a nice way to start a conversation, and you might even learn something.

How exactly do robo-calls help politicians? You know what I’m talking about—those automated, prerecorded phone messages we get on our landlines (those of us who still have landlines).

I don’t know anyone who ever says, “Wow, I got the nicest, most informative robo-call the other day.  The information was so pertinent and it really convinced me that that person was the right one for the job!”

I lost a good friend last week and, in a way, so did you. His name was Arthur Schuetz. He died six days from his 99th birthday.

He was my neighbor for years in the College Hill area. Art lived a quiet life, to my knowledge never making any newscast, never getting his photo and name splashed across the newspapers, never running for public office, never having streets or schools or businesses named for himself.

Paleteria La Reyna

Oct 8, 2010

I’ve been walking a lot lately, and not just because the weather is finally behaving.  I’ve been trying to balance the amount of exercise I get with the number of popsicles I have been eating.  This summer was the summer of the the paleta for me.  A paleta is a Mexican popsicle, and I have been quite obsessed with them, to the point where I was eating one a day during the month of August, hence, the new exercise regime.

Greetings from The Land That Time Forgot, also known as Wichita, Kansas. We’ve been a little slow to accept some of them new-fangled things that other towns have had for years. Take bicycles, for instance. We weren’t too sure they’d catch on so we waited a while. Then the other day I noticed an actual bike lane on First Street in the College Hill area. Right there against the curb was the white outline of a bicycle indicating a bike lane. At first I thought it was a crime scene. Like on TV where the police draw a chalk outline around the victim, in this case a bicycle.

Manna Wok

Sep 24, 2010
Fletcher Powell / KMUW

If you didn’t already know this, I’m half Asian-- half Filipino, specifically. I grew up eating rice with every meal, fish with heads on, chicken with feet on, fermented things, and every soy product known to man.  My parents are adventurous eaters, so my brother and sister and I ate all kinds of weird stuff from the get-go.  There is no food I won’t try at least once.

My Tho

Sep 10, 2010

I have good news. We are seriously blessed with wonderful Vietnamese food in Wichita.

If you are unfamiliar with Vietnamese cooking, it is easy to like, even for a beginner. It’s fresh and healthy, relying on noodles and rice, small amounts of meat, and lots of vegetables and fresh herbs. Oftentimes raw ingredients will be used to garnish cooked dishes by the diner to her own tastes, so it’s a great cuisine for people who like to play with their food.

Isn’t passion great? Not the romantic kind of “oh, baby, I love you, I love you” passion, but the everyday sort of passion that people feel for practically every kind of imaginable thing.


Commentary & Podcasts

Past & Present: Income Inequality

Income inequality has been a long-standing feature of American life. Consequently, U.S. history has featured numerous proposals to decrease the disparity between the economic “haves” and “have-nots.”

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KMUW Music

Sunday, February 24

Hear new music from history-making contemporary gospel artist Kirk Franklin. He’s sold over 10 million records worldwide and is still going strong. The 12-time Grammy winner, musician, songwriter, producer and choir director has a new single out called “Love Theory.” Franklin also plans to host what called the “biggest night in gospel music,” the 34th annual Stellar Awards, in Las Vegas on March 29. Join us for Soulsations Sunday night at 6 p.m. on KMUW.

 Here’s the official music video for Kirk Franklin’s new single “Love Theory:”

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Friday, February 22  

Best Days is the debut recording from Cartwheel, featuring Kristyn Chapman, Will Erickson and Riley Day. We’ll hear selections from that release as well as music from Hands Like Glaciers, the newest from Old News.    

Saturday, February 23

We mark the 75th birthday of guitar legend Johnny Winter with music from his solo career and his work with Muddy Waters. 

Monday, February 25

Released in 1990, And The Horse They Rode In On was the fifth studio album from Soul Asylum and the group’s final before its breakthrough 1992 release, Grave Dancer’s Union. We’ll hear selections from And The Horse They Rode In On as well as music from Bob Mould’s 1990 effort, Black Sheets Of Rain.

Tuesday, February 26

Listen for selections from Hot Boxing, the 1994 effort from the band Magnapop, produced by Bob Mould, as well as music from Neil Young’s Sleeps With Angels.

Wednesday, February 27

Inspired by his stepson’s interest in loud rock ‘n’ roll bands such as Camper Van Beethoven, John Hiatt abandoned his singer-songwriter sounds for the 1993 album Perfectly Good Guitar. We’ll hear music from that recording as well as Paul Westerberg’s solo debut from that same year, 14 Songs.

Thursday, February 28

In the early 1980s, Ohio elementary school teacher Robert Pollard bought a chick for his son as an Easter present. The chick grew into a frightening rooster that Pollard and his family dubbed Big Daddy. The rooster came to grace the cover of Devil Between My Toes, the 1987 album from Pollard’s band, Guided By Voices. We’ll hear selections from that release as well as music from Come On Pilgrim, the Pixies’ effort from the same year. Both artists are featured throughout March on Strange Currency.

Monday, February 18

Night Train celebrates Presidents’ Day with music from and the stories of Abe Lincoln, George Washington and ‘the Prez’ himself – Lester Young. We’ll also hear a ‘campaign song’ from Louis Jordan, some patriotic sounds from John Daversa’s American Dreamers album that just took home three Grammy Awards, music from Dizzy Gillespie (who did his own unique run for President in 1964), and more; plus in hour two a special tribute to Lester Young.

Tuesday, February 19

Tonight on the Night Train, it’s the divas! Sarah, Carmen, Ella, Dinah, a tribute to Billie Holiday and more. Plus soul jazz from Hank Crawford, one of Phil Woods’ final concert appearances, and classics from Wes Montgomery, Benny Golson, and Ben Webster.

Wednesday, February 20

Night Train marks birthdays of soul jazz organist Charles Kynard, trumpeter Lew Soloff, and singer Nancy Wilson (including a special focused on her early jazz career in hour two of the show). Plus more jazz harp for the February feature from Carol Robbins and we’ll hear Alice Coltrane, this time on organ, from a mid-70s release, Eternity. Also the latest from Kansas City’s OJT and from trumpeter Thomas Marriott.

Thursday, February 21

Night Train marks birthdays of pianist Eddie Higgins, composer & arranger Tadd Dameron (including classic compositions from him that appear on new albums from Jorge Nila and the Joe Magnarelli Quintet), drummer Joe Farnsworth (on a new album from Harold Mabern), and pianist and vocalist Nina Simone (including a special about her life and music in hour two of the show). Plus Night Train continues the February Harp feature with music from contemporary harp star Brandee Younger.

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February 22 & 24

Crossroads wraps up the February Johnny Winter feature with music from his last studio album, work with Muddy Waters, a live set with Dr. John and, in hour two, part two of a Johnny Winter Special. Plus International Blues Challenge winners (Steve Strongman, Keeshea Pratt Band) and Blues Music Award nominees (Nick Moss, Sue Foley).

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Monday February 18

Global Village celebrates Gambian Independence Day with rarely heard music and musicians from that small West African country. Highlights include popular early post-Independence bands like the Super Eagles, acclaimed pioneering ‘roots’ band Ifang Bondi, U.S. based Gambian kora player Foday Musa Suso (with the groundbreaking Mandingo Griot Society), Gambian griot and bluesman Juldah Camara with Justin Adams, and Gambian kora player Dembo Konte with Kausu Kuyateh & the Jali Roll Orchestra (featuring members of 3 Mustaphas 3).


Tuesday February 19

Global Village heads to Sweden for music from Garmarna, Den Fule, Groupa, and Lena Willemark with Ale Moller. We’ll also hear English folk great Bert Jansch, Italy’s Officina Zoe, and the African-Scandinavian band Monoswezi.


Wednesday February 20

Global Village marks birthdays of indigenous artist Buffy Sainte-Marie and Buena Vista Social Club member Ibrahim Ferrer. We also remember Kenyan artist Ayub Ogada and Malian singer Sali Sidibe, who both passed away recently. Also music from the Grammy-winning Anniversary album from the Spanish Harlem Orchestra, and more harp music for the February feature, this time from Colombian harpist Edmar Castaneda.


Thursday February 21

A number of birthdays marked in this edition of Global Village including the great Nina Simone, roots artist Rhiannon Giddens (with former Carolina Chocolate Drops partner Leyla McCalla), Ranking Roger (with the English Beat), Jerry Harrison (solo and with the Talking Heads), and also Corey Harris (including a song he did with Malian legend Ali Farka Toure). Plus more harps for the February feature, this time from the acclaimed Welsh mother-daughter fiddle and harp duo of Delyth & Angharad and also early music from the Chieftains with harpist Derek Bell. We’ll also hear the latest from Benin International Musical and Scottish band Breabach.

Friday February 22

In conjunction with the February Harp feature, Global Village features a related instrument, the West African kora. We’ll hear music from the first full album of kora music recorded in the early ‘70s, and a tribute to it recorded some three decades later by the sons of those musicians and two of the premier kora players of today – Toumani Diabate and Ballake Sissoko. (Sissoko is the featured artist for this month’s Global Village at the Savannah Music Festival program later this month.) We’ll also hear the kora in some different settings: with the jazz group the Kora Band, with classical harp (from one of several critically acclaimed albums from Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita), and with contemporary classical ensemble, the Kronos Quartet (we’ll also get to some music from the Landfall album Kronos did with Laurie Anderson which just won a Grammy – along with new music from Italy’s Bandadriatica and from the new Rough Guide to Scottish Folk). 

Airing at 4 p.m. on Sundays in February, this radio documentary from WXPN and NPR celebrates gospel music's influence on early rock and soul.


‘I Don’t Want To Be Poor All My Life’: Kansas Prison Staff Face Low Pay And Long Hours

Hunter Defenbaugh loves working in prison. Five nights a week, the 19-year-old corrections officer works overnight shifts in the infirmary at El Dorado Correctional Facility 30 miles northeast of Wichita. He checks on sick inmates, gives them blankets, calls nurses for help. Defenbaugh likes the job, he says, because he likes helping people. It beats his old gigs flipping burgers at McDonald’s or ringing up customers at Walmart.

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