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Code Switch
7:02 am
Wed January 1, 2014

How To Pitch Stories To Code Switch

ThomasSoerenes Flickr

Like every team of reporters and editors at a major news outlet, Code Switch gets a lot of pitches for stories, and we can only greenlight a small percentage of them. The majority are from publicists interested in having us cover one of their clients. But we also get a healthy stream of pitches from potential freelancers.

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New In Paperback
7:02 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Dec. 30- Jan. 5: Tsunami Survival, A Tokyo Diarist And The Vietnam War

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 9:44 am

*Some of the language in the summaries above has been provided by publishers.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

You Must Read This
7:02 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Crossroads And Coins: Naomi Mitchison's 'Travel Light'

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 10:10 am

When I was 7 years old, living in a flat overlooking Hamra street in Ras Beirut, I read The Hobbit. I fell in love with it. I memorized all the songs and made up tunes to them; I memorized all the riddles and asked them of whoever would listen; I made up my own adventures in Mirkwood, my own encounters with Gandalf and Beorn and the Elves. I also read everything I could about Tolkien, and went in search of anything else he'd written. I decided that I too would be a writer, and that I would start with poems and work my way into fiction the way he did.

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This Is NPR
6:02 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Happy New Year, Friends!

Claire Mueller NPR

We raise a toast to you, our listeners. Cheers to a happy, healthy, and inspiring 2014. From our NPR family to yours, Happy New Year!

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Energy
5:26 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Derailing Revives Calls To Change How Trains Haul Crude Oil

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

Investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board are in the small town of Casselton, North Dakota, trying to learn what caused a fiery train crash. It's the latest in a series of accidents involving trains hauling crude oil. By far the most destruction happened last summer in Canada, where the center of a town in Quebec was destroyed, leaving 47 people dead.

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Economy
5:20 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Home Prices Mark Biggest Gains Since 2006

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And before the ball dropped in Times Square last night, new numbers came out on the housing market, and they showed the past year saw the biggest gains in home prices since 2006.

NPR's Chris Arnold reports.

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Law
5:18 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Chief Justice Highlights Lack Of Funding For Federal Judiciary

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Looking back as a new year approaches is something of a tradition at the Supreme Court. And yesterday the High Court released an annual report by the Chief Justice offering insights into both the year gone by and the one ahead. This year, Chief Justice John Roberts highlighted a woeful lack of funding for the federal judiciary. For more we turn to NPR justice correspondent Carrie Johnson. Welcome, Carrie.

CARRIE JOHNSON, BYLINE: Thanks, Renee.

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Around the Nation
5:16 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Mayor Bill De Blasio Takes Office In New York City

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

New York City ushered in the New Year last night with its famous crystal ball, and also the swearing in of a new mayor. Just after midnight, Bill de Blasio was sworn into office in a private ceremony in the yard of his row house in Brooklyn. He's the first Democratic mayor in 20 years. His vision of the city could hardly be more different than that of his predecessor, billionaire Michael Bloomberg, who presided over what many will remember as a kind of gilded age.

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The Two-Way
5:14 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Dying Lawyer Convicted Of Aiding Terrorism Leaves Prison

Attorney Lynn Stewart smiles at her husband Ralph Poynter, as they leave Federal Court in Manhattan in 2005 after she was convicted on all five charges regarding aiding terrorism, assisting terrorism and making false statements.
David Karp AP

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 10:47 am

Former defense lawyer Lynne Stewart, 74, who's suffering from breast cancer, has been released from a Texas prison.

In 2005, Stewart was convicted of helping blind Egyptian cleric Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman communicate with followers while he was serving a life sentence for plotting to blow up landmarks in New York City.

Government attorneys requested the early release for Stewart because the cancer has metastasized to her lungs and bones.

Doctors say she has less than 18 months to live.

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The Two-Way
5:10 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Former First Lady Barbara Bush Is Hospitalized

Former first lady Barbara Bush in March 2012.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

Barbara Bush, 88, is in a hospital in Houston with a respiratory-related issue, according to her husband's office.

She was admitted to Houston Methodist Hospital on Monday, a statement from the office of former President George H.W. Bush reads.

The statement says the former first lady "is in great spirits."

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NPR Story
4:41 am
Wed January 1, 2014

New Year's Celebrations Move Around The Globe

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

So how did you ring in the New Year this year: among friends with a pop of champagne and a kiss? Or did you join with the millions of celebrants in cities all around the world, who gathered in public places, to bring in 2014 with a bang. In London, a spectacular fireworks display kicked off with Big Ben chiming in the New Year.

(SOUNDBITE OF A CROWD AND BIG BEN)

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NPR Story
4:41 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Alarm Clock Sets Off A Real Wake-Up Call

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne. Around New Year's lots of us are thinking about time and how we spend it. Yesterday we heard about an unusual wristwatch that challenged how we look at time and today we bring you a story about an alarm clock designed to help you stick to those New Year's resolutions.

The Chicago based company Fig believes the clock will help keep people motivated to meet their life goals. NPR's Alix Spiegel took a look and found the clock led her into some much deeper issues.

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NPR Story
4:41 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Rose Bowl Highlights College Football Game Day

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

January 1st is the day college football fans dream about - or, at least they used to. Not too long ago, it featured the big event: the last and biggest of the bowl games. We'll have to wait until next Monday for the BCS championship, but no worry, there are still some good games on tap for today. And here with a preview is NPR's Mike Pesca. Good morning.

MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: Hello.

MONTAGNE: Six games today, Mike. Which are the big ones?

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NPR Story
4:41 am
Wed January 1, 2014

3 NPR Correspondents Change Beats

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

As the new year begins, some of the familiar voices you hear on NPR will be coming from different places. Call it our own version of musical chairs. Our colleague Philip Reeves has been covering Europe from his base in London. He's now moving to Pakistan. Replacing him in London is Ari Shapiro, who's been our White House correspondent.

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Toast Of The Nation
4:22 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Cecile McLorin Salvant: Live In Washington, D.C.

Cecile McLorin Salvant.
Margot Schulman Courtesy of the Kennedy Center

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:19 pm

Among the breakout performers of 2013 was the young singer Cecile McLorin Salvant. Her unfussy, yet flexible delivery and penchant for material of an older vintage cut a distinct profile — especially for someone who turned 24 last year. It's no surprise that her recent album WomanChild was received with wide acclaim, named the top vocal album in NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll and collecting a Grammy nomination.

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Toast Of The Nation
4:21 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Donald Harrison Quintet: Live At Berklee

Donald Harrison leads his quintet in concert.
Henry Hayes Courtesy of Berklee College of Music

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:19 pm

Since attending Berklee College of Music, alto saxophonist Donald Harrison has been a Jazz Messenger, a leading Young Lion, a New Orleans torchbearer, and a famed mentor for new talent. As a bandleader, he merges all that and more. Accompanied by a young rhythm section and fellow New Orleanian Detroit Brooks (guitar), the "King of Nouveau Swing" returns to his alma mater — where, incidentally he also played Toast of The Nation a decade ago. The concert, part of the First Night Boston festival, was hosted by Eric Jackson of WGBH.

Set List

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Toast Of The Nation
4:21 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Bobby McFerrin's 'spirityouall': Live At Monterey

Bobby McFerrin with his daughter, Madison McFerrin.
Craig Lovell Courtesy of Monterey Jazz Festival

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:17 pm

Robert McFerrin, Sr., a baritone, was the first African American man to perform solo at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, and an important interpreter of spirituals. He's clearly passed along some of his talent to his son, the world-renowned vocal gymnast Bobby McFerrin. And McFerrin the younger has recently taken an interest in his father's spiritual repertoire, putting his own spin on them for his 2013 recording spirityouall. At the Monterey Jazz Festival, he performs that material with his own progeny — his daughter Madison McFerrin.

Set List

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Toast Of The Nation
4:21 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Paquito D'Rivera: Live In Chicago

Paquito D'Rivera performs with the Kaia String Quartet.
Aaron Edwards Courtesy of the Latino Music Festival/WFMT Radio Chicago

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:18 pm

The reedman Paquito D'Rivera has made a career out of crossing genres. Born in Cuba, his larder is never out of Afro-Caribbean and Latin American sounds; he's made a name for himself as a jazz virtuoso and classical performer. Chicago's Latino Music Festival took advantage this year. Artistic director Elbio Barilari, himself a composer (and host of Fiesta!

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Toast Of The Nation
4:20 am
Wed January 1, 2014

Convergence With Larry Goldings: Live In Denver

Convergence with Larry Goldings (foreground).
Travis Broxton Broxton Art

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 5:16 pm

Every month, the members of the Colorado-born sextet Convergence gather from near and far at the Denver club Dazzle, often with a special guest. The band certainly has plenty of material to draw from — Convergence first converged in 1991. For Toast of the Nation 2013-14, it welcomed Hammond B-3 organist Larry Goldings from Los Angeles to ring in midnight in Mountain Time. Carlos Lando of KUVO hosts the festivities.

Set List

  • "Jim Jam (For Jim Hall)" (Goldings)
  • "Pegasus" (Goldings)
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Sweetness And Light
3:07 am
Wed January 1, 2014

The (Very) Long View On The State Of Football

iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed January 1, 2014 11:42 am

Football is often called a "gladiator game." This past semester, several football players took a class at the University of Washington that explores the idea. It turns out that both the professor and her football-playing students found that it's not just a glib analogy.

Apart from the extreme fact that the Roman slaves actually killed each other in their games, there are certain fascinating parallels.

Click on the audio link above to hear Deford's take on this issue.

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