HPPR Arts, Culture & History

History:
prehistory
Native American history
early exploration
trails and railroads
homesteading
community settlement
farming & farm life
Dust Bowl era
ghost towns
personal remembrances & biographies

Culture:
ethnic groups
religion
language
cuisine
traditions
values
folklore
myths
humor

Arts:
literature
folk art
visual arts
music
theatre
events & festivals

CSAW/WTAMU

A new venture at West Texas A&M University is drawing a lot of buzz across the High Plains. The Center for the Study of the American West was launched this fall and has already positioned itself as one of the jewels in WT’s crown.

The project’s sponsor, Dr. Alex Hunt, says the Center’s role is to foster interdisciplinary research, teaching, and public outreach relevant to the American West.

UPDATED CONCERT SCHEDULE!

Please mark your calendars! We may have lost Tia McGraff, but we gained The Dustjackets in two cities. 

Thank you for supporting live music on the High Plains!

Andipantz/Getty/Bloomberg / Animation: Sheryl Sulistiawan

American travelers may not have noticed, but a legendary American roadside icon has been fading away in recent years.

As Bloomberg reports, “(No) Vacancy” signs are vanishing from American highways.

These neon signs have been greeting road-weary travelers for generations--unless the “No” is lit before “Vacancy.” In that case, the sign has become a famous symbol of disappointment.

Bettman & Halpin

Live in Amarillo: Friday, November 18th
Doors @ 7p ~ Show @ 7:30p
Chalice Abbey (2717 Stanley St. ~ Off Georgia, Near Wolflin)
$15 Suggested Donation

Please let us know you're coming!
You can RSVP online, or call 806.367.9088.

We're All From . . .

Nov 8, 2016

As we conclude the HPPR Radio Readers Fall 2016 Read, I’m gratified for each challenging and meaningful discussion about the changing faces of, well, the faces of our communities.

National Archive/Newsmakers/Getty

For some reason, Texas always seems to spring to mind when people are thinking of destruction on a huge scale.

Take the 1998 movie Armageddon, for example, in which Planet Earth is threatened by an asteroid “the size of Texas.”

The fact is, sometimes it’s not great to be intimately linked with bigness. Last week, Russia unveiled a brand new ballistic missile. The country proudly announced that the warhead is big enough “to wipe out Texas.”

Brueghel, 16th Century Belgian painting / Wikipedia

I sat, basking, recently, in the sunlight of this dying autumn season, a few butterflies flittered amongst faded zinnias and browning marigolds, a wasp sank sluggishly to my table, and I was thinking.   

The last few months…so tough…increased work demands, mounting pressures and expenses at home…a dying friend, my head cold. The shameful mockery of our democratic processes during this year’s Presidential campaign… The recent arrests of three southwest Kansans for plotting a terrorist attack on a Muslim-Somali community…. Then, the opening lines of WH Auden’s  poem, from the late 1930’s, came to mind:

About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters; how well, they understood
Its human position; how it takes place
While someone else is eating or opening a window or just walking dully along….”

That’s me: I’m guilty. I’ve just been walking dully along. For one, I’ve not been as invested, as committed, to HPPR’s Radio Readers this fall as I could have been. But who can blame me? These books have been, well, hard.

Imagen Digital / Digital Image

Oct 28, 2016
Kathleen Holt

Today, I will read one bilingual poem from my book Conjuro.

Imagen Digital/Digital Image

“Naambo Kananfa Naambo, Guayé

Naambo Kananfa Yé

Nibela Yuku Yuku Labadiato

Naambo Sei Ta La Kananfa”

 

FALLOU NDIAYE

Hi, my name is Fallou Ndiaye.  I am originally from Senegal, West Africa.  I currently live in Garden City, Kansas. My story of coming to the United States began when I worked at the Embassy in Senegal because Senegal is the long ally of the United States. The last three Presidents visited Senegal, so when I work there, they welcome you and greet you in a respectful way and give me visa to get my chance to come here in the United States.

When I came here, I learned that the opportunities are open to everyone – to everyone who wants to move up, they give you a chance to do it. So, every place since then, I work more than a decade. I was looking for a job and they give me that job, the same job they provide to everyone.  So, even if I don’t speak the language at that time very clearly to them, they help me.  They help me and guide me and train me as they train American people to do the job like everybody.

NEH.gov

West Texas A&M University in Canyon is celebrating the establishment of its new Center for the Study of the American West by hosting a lecture this Thursday evening. Award-winning Colorado historian Patricia Limerick will give the inaugural Garry L. Nall Lecture in Western Studies.

Steve Johnson / Washington Post

It’s not every day that a High Plains destination receives the royal treatment from The Washington Post. But last week the legendary newspaper heaped praise onto Palo Duro Canyon, calling it “Texas’ Best Kept Secret.”

Some people just don't know when to quit -- and for that, HPPR is thankful.

With more than 100 head of grass-fed cattle on his family farm in Buffalo, Missouri, you'd think Lyal Strickland wouldn't be tooling around the country with his guitar. However, you'd be incorrect. This guy loves pushing the logical boundaries of how much HARD WORK a human can handle, and then handle it all, he does.

Say What?

Oct 24, 2016
NPR

The third book in HPPR’s Radio Readers Fall read bears the enigmatic title of What is the What.  A collaborative effort between novelist Dave Eggers and Valentino Achak Deng, the novel is set, primarily, in war-torn Sudan.  Both Eggers and Deng have said that they believed the book needed to be written to share and document Deng’s experiences as among the millions dead and displaced by the Sudanese Civil War.  Both men were committed to creating a work that would document the culture of Deng’s people, the Dinka.

As Deng talked about his life, Eggers collected vast amounts of material—a couple years’ worth of conversations-- then struggled to organize it in a compelling way, one that didn’t play on scenes of horror and brutality in prurient ways. He considered various titles for the book – one was It Was Just Boys Walking and another was Hello, Children. Those titles, as Eggers has said, suggested a focus on Deng’s experiences during the war and in refugee camps in Ethiopia and in Kenya. But, Eggers has said, eventually neither title seemed right for the book.  After all, in Eggers’ words, by the time he and Deng were collaborating, “Valentino had been a man for a long time…and he and the other so-called Lost Boys were tired of being known as boys. The story of Valentino's life would need to be equally, if not more so, about the issues he faced [as a man].”  Eggers began to explore ways that the novel/memoir might be crafted to convey questions about Dinka culture and ongoing conflicts in Sudan and Darfur

( http://www.vadfoundation.org/it-was-just-boys-walking/), and, it would seem, the story of Deng’s time in the United States.

Don't miss a phenomenal DOUBLE CONCERT for guitar lovers across the High Plains! Two GUITAR MASTERS perform at HPPR Studios in Garden City, KS on Friday, November 4th at 7pm. 

Hiroya Tsukamoto and

Adam Gardino, with special guest Kelly Champlin.

Click here to RSVP online or call 806.367.9088.

A new book takes readers on a fascinating journey into the heart of the Texas Panhandle. In Walking the Llano: A Texas Memoir of Place, Shelley Armitage invites readers to consider the unique character and geology of the Staked Plains. The book is a treasure of photographs, anecdotes, musings, philosophical wanderings, memories, and historical facts, all told through Armitage’s engaging and heartfelt prose.

The Denver Channel

’Tis the season for ghouls and things that go bump in the night. In honor of the spookiest month, The Denver Channel has posted a list of five public haunted sites in Colorado.

Called “the best kind of singer-songwriter” by the Dallas Observer, Vanessa Peters has played more than 1,100 shows in 11 countries and has independently released ten critically acclaimed albums. She tours the US and much of Europe, where she has a strong fan base thanks to the albums she made with her former Italian band, Ice Cream on Mondays. (It's because in Italy, all the gelaterias are closed on Monday -- and Vanessa struggled. Oh, she struggled.) 

Marvel Entertainment / Hays Daily News

Kansas now has its own Marvel superhero, reports The Hays Daily News.

FASO is thrilled to present internationally celebrated concert violinist, Rachel Barton Pine for the 2nd concert in the Friends of Aeolian-Skinner Opus 1024 (FASO)'s 2016-2017 Concert Season on Sunday, October 16!

Concerts are held at Saint Andrew's Episcopal Church, (1601 Georgia St., Amarillo, TX). 

Can You Hear Me Now?

Oct 10, 2016
BBC

We’re talking about Dave Egger’s What is the What, the third book in HPPR’s Radio Readers Fall Read. Our theme is stories, and, in this novel, Valentino Achak Deng recounts his life.  Rather than presented chronologically, rather than moving linearly through time,  Valentino’s narrative is fragmented, episodic, largely retrospective. It encompasses twenty some years, beginning in the relative present of his working minimum wage jobs in various eastern and southern cities of the United States, then to his early childhood in southern war-torn Sudan to a disordered life in the US, then back to resettlement in refugee camps in Ethiopia and Kenya. The novel concludes as Valentino prepares for yet another beginning, another relocation. When I think about it, Valentino’s life is much about endings and departures as it is about beginnings and arrivals.  His story, like Enrique’s, like Antonia’s is comprised of hostility,  hunger, violence, and death, stories that seem impossible to bear.

One Neighbor's Story - Generations' Stories

Oct 7, 2016
www.cbc.ca

So, both my parents are immigrants from Vietnam.  Back in the 1970s, my grandfather was a police officer in Vietnam.  When the Vietnam War came around, the North had him put in jail because he was one of the government officials.  He spent five years and four months in jail.  They took him into the jungle for hard labor and stuff.  They spent a lot of time being poor because after the North took over the country since they were a Communist society they had all the resources and everything sold to pay off their war debts, so it was really hard for them to makes ends meet.  But, luckily my grandmother was smart about the whole thing.  She sold rice and stuff so, like before the North had a chance to sell off all her stuff, she sold it and bought gold and diamonds for it which was easier because the North also changed all the currency, so everyone who was wealthy suddenly wasn’t wealthy anymore.

Kelly Caminero / Daily Beast

Early last month, a Donald Trump surrogate threatened that if the New York billionaire wasn’t elected, the U.S. would have “taco trucks [on] every corner.” This prompted many Texans to say, “Sounds good to me!”

A beloved West Texas artist will be remembered this weekend by the West Texas A&M art program. Jim Harter was born in Lubbock in 1941, and later lived in Canyon and attended WT.

One Neighbor's Story - Uganda to the High Plains

Oct 5, 2016
Dodge City Community College

Mohammad Omar - Hi, my mane is Mohammad Omar.  I am from Africa, especially Uganda.  I am here since 2014, but I am living now in Dodge City.  I like Dodge City, Kansas, because we have a lot of work here.  Before I am working Tyson Food.  I start again Cargill Company.  Now I am working three years at National Beef.  So, we are happy to be here in Kansas, Dodge City.

The Fall Read - Refugees on the High Plains

Oct 4, 2016
www.humanosphere.org

As the Radio Readers move on from this month’s book Enrique’s Journey to October’s read, Dave Eggar’s book on the story Somali immigrants titled What is the What, we continue themes of separation from family, intense dangers in fleeing one’s homeland and eventual settlement and adjustment to life in the U.S. In the past decade, Amarillo has welcomed a large refugee resettlement program placing refugees from the likes of Burma, Iran, Iraq, Congo, Syria, Afghanistan, and Cuba among other countries.

High Plains Morning was recently haunted by the living ghost of Gabrielle Louise, who was traveling through Amarillo while touring for her recent full-length album release, If the Static Clears.

What Kind of Book is This?

Oct 3, 2016

Since August, Radio Readers have shared stories about borders and becoming. Our stories have been prompted by the books in our Fall read: Cather’s My Antonia and Nazario’s Enrique’s Journey.

The third book in this series is Dave Eggers’ 2006 novel, What is the What : The Autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng.  Recognized by various organizations as a “best” and “notable” book, What is the What is titled an autobiography, described as a novel, yet frequently classified as social history.

HPPR went to ¡GLOBALQUERQUE!, a world music festival in Abluquerque, New Mexico on 9/23 - 9/25. Given the eerie welcome from our drive into town, I had a feeling it would be spectacular -- and it was.

Here's a rundown of some of the incredible artists featured this year, including exclusive photos and videos of the performances. For the full festival line-up, please see the festival's website

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

The main components for an African-American monument arrived at the Texas capitol grounds this week, reports The Texas Tribune.

The monument is finally being installed after more than two decades of effort by lawmakers. The memorial was designed and built by Denver-based sculptor Ed Dwight. The bronze and granite memorial will celebrate more than 400 years of achievements by black Texans.

Today on High Plains Morning, we were thrilled to host SHEL, a Fort Collins, CO AND Nashville-based troupe of four sisters who have been writing and performing together since they were kids.

Currently on tour with their 2nd LP, Just Crazy Enough, SHEL wanted to high-five the High Plains -- so they stopped in to play us a few tunes!

As promised, here's the link to their delightful new video, "You Could Be My Baby."

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