Randy Newman never considered himself a rock star. He's had his hits like, "I Love LA" and "Short People," but may be better known for his work in TV show themes and film scores. His unmistakable voice has graced the soundtracks of dozens of films, including the Toy Story films, A Bug's Life and Monsters, Inc.
When the singer and composer got a call saying he'd be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he was shocked. He told Rolling Stone, "I really thought maybe I'd have to die first."
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. In the end, it's not close in South Carolina. Polls show it could be in Massachusetts. And the president studies up on Korean culture. It's Wednesday and time for a...
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Gangnam style...
CONAN: Edition of the political junkie.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: There you go again.
VICE PRESIDENT WALTER MONDALE: When I hear your new ideas, I'm reminded of that ad: Where's the beef?
Hanni El Khatib plays a style of rock 'n' roll that keeps company with late nights, drag races and bar brawls. With his second album, Head in the Dirt, the L.A. musician enlisted Black Keys frontman Dan Auerbach to help flesh out a fuller, richer sound. Watch as El Khatib plays a single off the album, "Penny," with a bigger band — and, of course, more amps.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. One hospital outside Dallas charges a little over 14 grand for pneumonia treatment. Another hospital a few miles down the same street charges more than twice as much, over $38,000. Why? Why has it taken so long for those prices to be made public? And now that they're out, how is that going to change health care?
On July 21, 2010, President Obama signed into law the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, commonly known as the Dodd-Frank bill. Reporter Gary Rivlin says "the passage of Dodd-Frank was something of a miracle." But to the chief lobbyist for the Financial Services Roundtable, a lobbying group that represents 100 of the country's largest financial institutions, it was just "halftime."
"I used to be a wimp in school. ... Since I started playing football in 9th and 10th grade, all I did was get a haircut, start wearing decent clothes and play sports. Now I'm a popular person... and I want to keep it going that way."
Saying that "we are not barbarians, we bury the dead," the police chief of Worcester, Mass., on Wednesday appealed for someone in authority to clear the way for the body of Boston Marathon bombings suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev to be buried.
President Obama's job approval has inched up in recent weeks, but the percentage of Americans who say they believe he is effective has taken a hit, according to a Pew Research Center survey released Wednesday.
And while the image of Republican leadership remains "deeply negative," and continues bearing the brunt of the blame for Washington gridlock, the survey found that the GOP runs even with Democrats on the key issues of the economy, immigration and guns.
Note: It is 100 percent true and 51 percent relevant that this entire story was written inside my brain while I was in the dentist's chair under the influence of anesthesia. I began to think, "Jeff Probst [the host of Survivor] will not be happy until he is more important than tribal council. Until he is king of CBS. Until he is President of the United States. President Jeff Probst." So the entire thing is numbness-induced in so many ways. Make of that what you will.
President Jeff Probst's State Of The Union Address, delivered Feb. 2 [xxx]
Today, I am thinking about how many times I have interviewed someone about some story or another, and that person has said to me, "I always heard about this or that thing on the news, but I never thought this would happen to me."
Well, three years ago tomorrow, the person saying that was me.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, we are going to talk about some controversies in hip hop recently that raise questions about just what crosses the line now between what's acceptable and what isn't and who decides that. That's coming up later in the program.
I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Coming up, as we approach Mother's Day this Sunday, we're checking out a new book. It's called "What My Mother Gave Me." It's about the special gift mothers give their daughters. That's just ahead.
Mother's Day is this Sunday. While some people are racking their brains to think of the perfect way to show their love and appreciation for Mom, a group of distinguished women recently flipped that script and wrote about the most profound gift their own moms gave to them. Their essays are collected in the new book What My Mother Gave Me: Thirty-One Women on the Gifts That Mattered Most.
Kate Campbell makes her sixth appearance on Mountain Stage, recorded live at the Paramount Theater in partnership with the Birthplace of Country Music in Bristol, Tenn./Va. Born in New Orleans, Campbell writes songs steeped in the culture of the American South. She released her debut album, Songs From the Levee, back in 1995; it drew apt comparisons to singer-songwriters like Emmylou Harris and Lucinda Williams.
The Los Angeles Police Department is under scrutiny again. This time it's for sending almost 80 officers to break up a college house party. Most of the partygoers were African-American students from the University of Southern California.
USC senior Nate Howard organized the party that was shut down by the police. At a protest on campus Monday he condemned the response.
"Seventy-plus officers?" he said. "What else was going on at that time in the community that you needed to be at a party of students getting ready to graduate?"