President Obama Visits Africa President Obama is making his third and longest trip to Africa, his first visit since winning reelection. The president intends to “reinforce the US' commitment to expanding economic growth” in Africa. We talk with Witney Schneidman, nonresident fellow with the Africa Growth Initiative.
Art Of Our City: Dueling Queensrÿches Fans of the Seattle band Queensrÿche have a lot be psyched about this week: a brand new album and two live shows. Queensrÿche performed last night at The Crocodile, and they’ll perform again this Saturday night at The Moore. Problem is, it’s actually two different bands, both using the name Queensrÿche. Following a huge fight last summer, the band split in two. What’s going on here? Decibel Magazine editor-in-chief Albert Mudrian helps us sort it out.
Seattle Transgender Pride The Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act this week, paving the way for same-sex married couples to receive the same federal rights and protections afforded to heterosexuals. The ruling is celebrated within the LGBT community as a huge step towards equality. But for transgender people – the T in LGBT – discrimination and inequality is still a very real and pressing threat across the country.
Art Of Our City You may not know his name, but you’ve probably seen Seattle-based artist Buster Simpson’s work. On First Avenue, you’ll find a couple of stone benches made by Simpson more than three decades ago, partly so the Belltown homeless people would have a place to sit. He’s installed some creative downspouts on buildings on Belltown’s Vine Street, part of an unrealized project that would crack open the asphalt that covers the street and turn Vine into a green belt that runs into Elliot Bay. Buster Simpson almost always works in public, and almost always addresses issues that affect our natural and built environment. The Frye Museum has mounted a 40 year retrospective. It’s called “Buster Simpson: Surveyor.”
Dan Savage On Faith, Sex, Love And Politics Dan Savage is an author, activist and nationally syndicated columnist. He writes the weekly “Savage Love” column and hosts Savage Lovecast, one of the most downloaded podcasts on iTunes. In 2010, Savage and his husband Terry Miller launched the It Gets Better online video project to help LGBT teens. In his latest book “American Savage: Insights, Slights, and Fights on Faith, Sex, Love, and Politics,” he explores issues such as health care, gun control, marriage equality and more.
The Kings Stay In Sacramento The inevitable was confirmed yesterday in Dallas by NBA commissioner David Stern. In a 22-8 vote, the NBA Board of Governors voted to keep the Sacramento Kings in Sacramento. Investor Chris Hansen said the struggle makes the payoff sweeter and that he hopes the Sonics will return to Seattle eventually. We’ll talk with Ben Adler from Capital Public Radio in Sacramento and Art Thiel in Seattle on how the decision came to be.
Art Of Our City: The Massive Monkees Earlier this year the hip-hop dance troupe Massive Monkees opened their first official dance studio, called the Beacon. As part of a Seattle program to invigorate empty storefronts in the city, the Monkees applied for and received a three-month residency in a storefront in the Chinatown-International District. Over the course of that residency, the Beacon offered classes for students as young as three up to their 50s and beyond. Now Massive Monkees' official residency is over, but they have the opportunity to make the Beacon permanent. The landlord has agreed to a longer lease with one catch: They need to raise some money for capital repairs. To that end, they’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign. We revisit a tour we took to the Beacon in February of this year.
The Book Of Woe The American Psychiatric Association is currently revising the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, a tool used by clinicians to diagnose patients with mental disorders. According to Gary Greenberg it is more like an “anthology of suffering.” Greenberg is a psychotherapist and author of the new book, “The Book of Woe: The DSM and the Unmaking of Psychiatry.” In his book he explains the history of the DSM and how the current revision of the DSM-5 is, as he argues, the most flawed yet. He says the DSM turns suffering into a commodity, leading to over- and misdiagnosis of mental illness.
Seattle Parks Plan Seattle officials want to hear from you about the future of the city’s parks. They're holding meetings this month to get public input on a parks plan that will guide where the city directs its resources in the years to come. We hear more from City Councilmember Sally Bagshaw.
Art Of Our City A new live music and film project explores the line between ambition and bad luck as it applied to the Donner Party. "We Are All Failing Them" is a new commission by Seattle’s Northwest Film Forum (teaser below). It’s a song cycle performed live to film. We talk with composer Robin Holcomb about the latest venture in her wide-ranging career.
Neal Thompson On Robert “Believe It Or Not!” Ripley A 1936 newspaper poll declared Robert Ripley the most popular man in America. How did a young, awkward newspaper cartoonist become a worldwide adventurer synonymous with the strange and unusual? Official Ripley biographer Neal Thompson joins us.
Electric Car Company Under Congressional Scrutiny Fisker Automotive is the latest beneficiary of the Obama Administration’s push for renewable energy to flounder. The electric car startup recently fired 75 percent of its workforce and hired bankruptcy advisers. Congress is asking questions about the propriety of federal loans to the politically well-connected company.
A Conversation With Writer Isabel Allende Isabel Allende is a world-renowned writer, with 19 books in 35 languages. Her latest is "Maya’s Notebook," a tale that revolves around a descent into addiction and a rebirth through the love of family and place.
A Conversation With President Obama’s Sister, Maya Saetoro-Ng A famous sibling can be a blessing or a burden. Maya Saetoro-Ng is the half-sister of President Obama. She uses her perspective as a history teacher to analyze how her brother’s presidency will be remembered.
Seattle Theater’s Power Couple Seattle theater audiences know R. Hamilton “Bob” Wright from his long career onstage acting and of late, directing. Wright’s wife, Katie Forgette, is also a fixture on Seattle stages as an actress and now a playwright. Forgette’s newest play has opened at ACT Theatre directed by husband Bob Wright.
Investigators are trying to piece together this week's bombings at the Boston Marathon. What clues are they looking for? How are bombs detected and disarmed? Seattle Police Department explosives experts Randy Curtis and Craig Williamson join us with an inside look. Call with your questions to 206.543.5869.
How does the universe create itself out of nothing, then keep going for billions of remarkable, evolving millennia? Can you even have "nothing," or do you have to bring God into the equation? These are the kinds of questions that arise when you're trying to explain the origin of life in the universe. Questions that Howard Bloom — science prodigy, former PR man for Prince, friend of Buzz Aldrin — tackles in his new book, “The God Problem.”
In an interview with Fox News earlier this week, Mitt Romney said that failing to reach minority voters was his biggest mistake of the 2012 campaign. What will it take to win the next election? UW Professor David Domke says winning over voters in so-called "carve-out states" — Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada — will be one key to victory. He joins us with rules of the road for winning the White House in 2016.
President Obama has nominated REI executive Sally Jewell for Secretary of the Interior. What should she focus on if she is confirmed? How should she manage the vast public lands that would be in her portfolio? We talk with local experts and conservationists. Join the discussion by emailing email@example.com.
The housing market is showing signs of recovery and construction has started once again on developments delayed by the recession. That doesn’t mean everyone is in good shape. Many homeowners remain underwater, with home values nowhere near the purchase price. Then there are the questions about refinancing or buying something new. Real estate and housing experts Richard Hagar and Linda Taylor are here to help. Call 206.543.5869 with your questions or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sax man and bestselling instrumentalist of all time, Kenny G, needs no introduction. Following stints with Barry White’s Love Unlimited Orchestra (at the age of 17) and The Jeff Lorber Fusion, the Seattle native and UW grad embarked on a solo career in the early 1980s. His 1992 album "Breathless" is the bestselling instrumental album of all time, and his 1994 album "Miracles" is the bestselling Christmas album of all time. He's collaborated with musical legends from Aretha Franklin to Stevie Wonder and even popped up in a Katy Perry video. The one and only Kenny G is in town to perform at Seattle's Jazz Alley. He joins us for a conversation about his life in music.
In this special hour-long edition of Art of Our City we explore stories from Puget Sound poets, illustrators, singers and more. They share the inspirations behind their work, and in some cases what they hope people will gain from it.
Why do we make art? and Is it worth the personal cost? are two of the central questions in Christine Deavel's poetry collection "Woodnote" (Bear Star Press, 2011). Deavel is the co-owner of a poetry-only bookstore in Seattle's Wallingford neighborhood, and a graduate of the prestigious Iowa Writers Workshop. "Woodnote" has even won the Washington State Book award for poetry. But even so, Deavel describes herself as someone who is almost constantly in crisis about why she, or anyone, writes. KUOW's Elizabeth Austen spoke with Christine Deavel about that ambivalence and how it plays out in her work.