First Lady Michelle Obama returned to Chicago on April 10 to promote Mayor Rahm Emanuel's initiative to help at-risk youth. In her luncheon remarks to 650 city, business and philanthropic leaders, Mrs. Obama recounted reporting from This American Life's "Harper High School Part 1" (Photo: Michelle Obama speaking to Chicago business leaders on April 10. WBEZ/Andrew Gill)
Something magical was brewing in the Jamaican music scene in the late 1960’s. Popular dance forms like ska were blending with rural folk sounds, and the whole thing was coming under the influence of R&B radio stations that could be heard wafting across the Caribbean from New Orleans and Miami. It was out of that musical stew that reggae was born. The genre has gone through changes and given birth to a number of sub-genres, but the original “roots reggae” from the early 70’s still holds a special place in the hearts of fans around the world. Los Angeles band The Expanders keeps that vintage sound alive while pushing things forward for the 21st century. They played Thursday night at House of Blues and they have a gig Friday night in Lincoln, Nebraska. But before leaving town they played some tunes off their new album Hustling Culture in the Jim and Kay Mabie Performance Studio.
Jose Gonzalez made music-and a name for himself-in his native Sweden playing everything from hardcore to indie pop. When his album Veneer finally hit U.S. audiences in 2005, they were treated to a singer and songwriter that was mature in both his sound and his vision. Fans have been waiting patiently for a new solo record, and after seven years, Vestiges & Claws has finally arrived. In between two sold-out nights at Lincoln hall, Gonzalez joins Morning Shift for some music and conversation.
My name is George Drake, Jr. I was born and raised in the Chicagoland area, where I still reside. My e-mail address is [email protected]
This piece uses the following sounds from freesound.org:
flopple3.aif, ovileel08.flac and dreesing 02.aif by Corsica_S, Paxierz single Loop 1 (Edit 2).wav, random recording 1, HI Thump echo.wav and LOW Thump Bass.wav by Erokia
This weekend and next, This American Life will devote two full episodes to the violence affecting Harper High School in Chicago. Last school year, 29 current and recent Harper students were shot. Twenty-one were wounded; eight died. WBEZ education reporter Linda Lutton and This American Life producer Ben Calhoun tell us about their months-long effort.
A concerned citizen witnesses his neighbors toss trash across the alley and wonders whether there are limits to what Chicago city waste haulers will pick up. And an observant resident notices more hawks in her ‘hood. Is it her imagination, or are these birds of prey staging a comeback? Note: the hawk in this image is *not* to scale. It's a composite image from two Creative Commons licensed photos via Flickr by users: "Chickens in the trees" and "like, totally." Yes, those are their usernames.
Experimental rock group Blues Control are out on tour, and stop in on The Morning Shift during their stop in Chicago. They’ll talk about life on the road, and their latest release, Valley Tangents (Drag City Records).