Melissa Fay Greene was on this program in 2006 to talk about a middle-class Ethiopian widow whose home became a refuge for hundreds of AIDS-orphaned children. She told that story in her book There Is No Me Without You. In the years since then, Greene and her husband have adopted four children from Ethiopia. Those kids joined another son adopted from Bulgaria as well as Greene’s four other children by birth. When the number of children hit nine, Greene turned her reporter’s eye to events at home and she wrote No Biking in the House Without a Helmet. Today, we present this interview as an act of remembrance. One of Greene’s adopted sons died tragically in October at the age of 20.
Bob talks to Marion Jacobson, an ethnomusicologist and accordionist, about her book Squeeze This!: A Cultural History of the Accordion in America. It’s the first history of the piano accordion to trace the evolution of the instrument from its invention in 19th century Vienna to its inclusion in nearly every style of American music today - from polka, Cajun and klezmer to Tejano, classical and rock n’ roll.
Bob speaks with psychology professor, cognitive scientist, music fan and musician Daniel Levitin about exactly what happens to us when we listen to the radio. Levitin is the author of This is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession.