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Jim McLean / Kansas News Service

The Kansas Republican Senate Candidates Debated Over Who’s Best To Work With Trump

MANHATTAN, Kansas — Five Republicans running for the U.S. Senate debated farm issues in Manhattan on Saturday. They all described themselves as loyalists to President Donald Trump.

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One thing I’m betting you are not asking Santa for this year is a telephone book.

Yet another unrequested phone book was delivered to my front porch the other day. I dutifully brought it in and opened the cabinet door to the area where we store them to add it to the collection. It was hours later before the avalanche rescue team found me beneath the huge pile of phone books that had tumbled out of that cabinet and buried me.

I’ve never been able to pass up an estate sale and stopped in at one last week in modest little home. The tattered art prints and hundreds of books painted a picture of a person with intellectual curiosity about the world of ideas. The small living room was dominated by a seriously grand piano standing proudly out among a few worn and threadbare sticks of furniture.

While I was in the basement, someone sat at that piano and played a flourishing rendition of “I Will Always Love You.” It echoed easily through the thin floors and walls of that once-beloved home.

What a weird holiday Halloween is.

It’s like some sort of phantom holiday that we all know exists and yet seems to dwell in some other holiday dimension. It’s printed on calendars, yet no one gets off work for it. The mail’s delivered.  Banks are open. Schools don’t shut down on Halloween, though some teachers trying to deal with kids on a frantic sugary candy high probably wish it was otherwise.

I like trains. I like riding on trains. I like looking at trains.  Heck, I even like songs about trains.

And I guess I really must admit that sometimes I even like getting slowed down at a railroad crossing while a thundering freight train lumbers along. It’s a chance to throw your hands up and say, “What can I do? I’m forced to sit here and take a pause out of my busy day and just watch this train go by.” It’s a break from the routine, as we scurry over the busy ant hills of our daily lives.

Fall is a time that always reminds me of when I was a kid growing up in the developing suburbs of Memphis. I had lots of opportunities then, to roam around the fields and woods, going no place in particular through nature’s leafy abundance.

Sometimes I was Robin Hood, sometimes a yodeling Tarzan, and sometimes I was just a leaf-kicking explorer feeling the breezes that whispered of a weather change just around the next weekend.

I have a health care proposal. It’s not about insurance availability or doctor choice. It’s not about single-payer or public option issues. But it is about our health. Our mental health. We need to take all the minutes from all the health care reform town hall meetings, take all the breathless commentaries from red-faced conservatives and blue-in-the-face liberals, put all that stuff in a lockbox, throw the lockbox in a closet for about a week, and get ourselves down to the Cowley County Fairgrounds in Winfield, Kansas.


Commentary & Podcasts

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Viral Kindness: The DIY PPE Queen

Peggy Smith is the office administrator for Haysville United Methodist Church, but after being inspired by a message from the church pastor, Peggy has added in a COVID-19 endeavor: making masks.

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Award-Winning KMUW News

Stephan Bisaha / Kansas News Service

Kansas Community College Football Now Has Its Own Stars, Netflix Series And Scandals

Kansas junior college football plays in the big time these days. The Jayhawk Community College Conference made a key change to its player eligibility rules three years ago that drew blue-chip players in from out of state. The level of play shot up almost overnight, transforming at least one team from a perennial doormat to a national contender.

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KMUW Music

Friday, May 29, and Sunday, May 31

Crossroads wraps up the May Little Walter Blues Harmonica feature with music from several blues harp players with new albums (including Mark Hummel, Andrew Alli doing a Little Walter tune, and 2020 Independent Music Award) nominee Ilya Portnov, a rare track with Little Walter on guitar, a Little Walter tribute album with Charlie Musselwhite, and a special in hour two chronicling his life and music. We also remember guitarist and organist Lucky Peterson who passed away earlier this month.

Monday, May 25

Night Train celebrations Memorial Day with two special programs from the premier Air Force jazz ensemble, the Airmen of Note. In hour one, we’ll hear the band with special guest Karrin Allyson, one of today’s top jazz vocalists and an artist who got her start in Kansas City. In hour two, the special guest is one of today’s finest Latin jazz artists – saxophonist, clarinetist and Irakere co-founder Paquito D’Rivera.

Tuesday, May 26

Night Train marks the centennial birthday today of May featured artist Peggy Lee with some key tracks from across her career in hour one and a special in hour two that focuses on Lee as a songwriter. There’s also music from Miles Davis for his birthday, the latest release in the Erroll Garner Octave Records reissue series, and new albums from the Joshua Jern Jazz Orchestra and trumpeter Jeremy Pelt.

Wednesday, May 27

Tonight on the Night Train we’ll hear music from singer Dee Dee Bridgewater (including an interview and special in hour two of the show), saxophonist Bud Shank, bassist Niels Henning Orsted Pederson, and pianist Marc Copland, all born on this date – along with music from the Modern Jazz Quartet (with May featured artist John Lewis), a tribute to guitarist and organist Lucky Peterson, and the latest from Church on Monday and Idle Hands.

Thursday, May 28

Night Train wraps up this broadcast week with birthday salutes to blues and electric guitar legend T-Bone Walker, West Coast pianist Russ Freeman, the late Brazilian trumpeter Claudio Roditi, and guitarist and songwriting partner of May featured artist Peggy Lee, Dave Barbour. Plus new music from trumpeters Thomas Marriott and John Sneider, pianist Michael Wolff, vocalist Kandace Springs, and Brent Jensen (with a 19th anniversary reissue of his album in tribute to Brubeck Quartet saxophonist Paul Desmond).

Monday, May 25

The final Monday of every month, we present Global Village at the Savannah Music Festival, a monthly concert series showcasing top world music artists and groups who have appeared at the prestigious annual festival that takes place each spring in Savannah, Georgia.

This time, in conjunction with the May Haitian Heritage Month feature, our featured artist is Leyla McCalla. The Haitian-American singer, songwriter, cellist and former member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops brings together string band, Haitian, blues, jazz, and classical music in a unique and captivating blend. This was her debut performance at the Savannah Music Festival.

Tuesday, May 26

Global Village marks the centennial birthday of singer and songwriter Peggy Lee with some of the Latin styled songs she did. We’ll also hear music from Sketches of Spain for Miles Davis’s birthday, music from Ruben Gonzalez for his birthday, a new album from another Buena Vista member Eliades Ochoa, and the latest world project from cellist Matthieu Saglio.

Wednesday, May 27

This time in the Global Village, it’s a program devoted to South African reggae. Among the highlights: one of the giants of South African reggae, Lucky Dube; Dube’s original group, the Slaves; a cover of a Bob Marley classic from Freshlyground; and reggae-inspired song from the late, great Johnny Clegg and from township favorites Mahlathini & the Mahotella Queens.

Thursday, May 28

In conjunction with the May Haitian Heritage Month feature, Global Village highlights some of the mizik rasin or roots music bands of Haiti – plus new music from Cypress (Trio Tekke), Colombia (a Discos Fuentes compilation), the Indian Ocean (the Soul Sega Sa series), and Senegal (Ibrahima Cissokho), and blasts from the past from Latin rock pioneers Malo, boogaloo star Bobby Valentin, and new-flamenco group Pata Negra.

Friday, May 29

Global Village pays tribute to guitarist, songwriter, and brother of Carlos, Jorge Santana, who passed away earlier this month with music from several of the albums he did with the groundbreaking Latin rock band Malo. Plus music from two Latin jazz artists born on this date – Hilton Ruiz and Wayne Wallace, the latest from Antibalas, Al DiMeola and the Awale Jant Band, and a wrap on this month’s Haitian Heritage Month feature with the acclaimed compas group Tabou Combo.

Sunday, May 24

Sunday on Soulsations, hear new music by John Legend.  The singer/songwriter and judge on ABC’s The Voice is scheduled to release his 7th studio album on June 19. Here’s the video of the title track, “Bigger Love.” It includes people from around the world who submitted video of themselves practicing social distancing, dancing and sharing love during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This video was made to celebrate our shared love, hope and resilience,” Legend stated in a press release. Raphael Saadiq is the executive producer of the project.

Album Cover Art Courtesy Conqueroo

Wednesday, May 20

New York At Night is the latest release from singer-songwriter Willie Nile. The record celebrates family, unity and the city Nile has called home since the early 1970s. We’ll hear music from that as well as selections from the new EP by Cuddle Magic.

Thursday, May 21

Threesome Vol.1 is the debut release from The Lickerish Quartet, featuring former members of the band Jellyfish. The music recalls classic sounds of the ‘70s, including Roxy Music, Queen and ELO while retaining contemporary sensibilities. We’ll hear selections from that recording as well as music from Mike Keneally’s You Must Be This Tall.

Friday, May 22

A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip is the latest album from Sparks. We’ll hear music from that effort as well as selections from Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit’s Reunions.

Saturday, May 23

We mark the birthday of Bob Dylan (b.May 24 1941) with music from throughout his career as well as signature covers of his songs. 

Monday, May 25

Neon Cross is the new release from Jaime Wyatt. Produced by Shooter Jennings, the record finds the singer-songwriter in fine form and joined by such luminaries as Jessi Colter and the late Neal Casal. We’ll hear selections from this release as well as music from Mitski’s 2014 album, Bury Me At Makeout Creek.

Tuesday, May 26

We’ll hear music from the latest by Ritchie Kotzen, 50 For 50 as well as music from Freddie Nelson’s Shake The Cage.

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