There's not much news out of presidential primaries these days, but there was one surprise yesterday in West Virginia's Democratic primary. A convicted felon serving time in a Texas prison won 41 percent of the vote to President Obama's 59 percent.
For more on this unusual candidate and what his strong second-place showing says about Democratic voters in West Virginia, I'm joined from Charleston by Associated Press reporter Lawrence Messina.
Chicha is a corn-derived liquor native to the South American Andes since ancient times. It's also a quirky style of pop music that developed in the Peruvian Amazon in the 1960s and '70s. All of that provides inspiration for the Brooklyn band Chicha Libre, which has just released its second album, Canibalismo.
Founder Olivier Conan developed a passion for chicha music while crate-digging through old vinyl in Peru. He says all pop-music innovators are really sonic predators.
When author and illustrator Maurice Sendak entered the world of children's books, it was a very safe place. Stories were sweet and simple and set in a world without disorder. But Sendak, who died Tuesday at age 83, broke with that tradition. In Where the Wild Things Are, Sendak explored the darker side of childhood. Upstairs in young Max's bedroom, a jungle grows, and he sails off to a land of monsters.
U.S. authorities say they have foiled a terrorist plot to target an airliner. A suicide bomber was planning to bring down a plane headed to the United States. The Associated Press first reported the story. Al-Qaida's affiliate group in Yemen is believed to be behind the plot, which national security officials say had not advanced far enough, that the suspect bought plane tickets or tried to board a plane.
NPR's Carrie Johnson has been reporting on this story. She joins me now. And, Carrie, what else have you found out?
Forty years ago Sunday, history was made at Carnegie Hall.
On May 6, 1972, comedian Groucho Marx made his debut at the famed New York venue to a packed house. Tickets sold out as soon as it was announced.
Marx was 81 at the time and had been out of the spotlight for many years. His one-man show only toured a handful of venues, and his Carnegie Hall show was later released as an album called An Evening with Groucho.
She closed the book, placed it on the table and finally decided to walk through the door. That's the starting sentence for Round 8 of Three-Minute Fiction. That is our contest where we ask you to write an original short story that can be read in about three minutes. We are no longer accepting submissions for this round.
Our readers from across the country are almost done going through all of the more than 6,000 submissions this round. So let's hear a few samples of their favorites so far.
This past week, charges were filed against members of the Florida A&M marching band in the hazing death of a former member. In recent weeks, there have been a string of hazing scandals on campus. In April, five Boston University students were bound and beaten in a fraternity house basement. And Rolling Stone magazine recently profiled a Dartmouth student's humiliating hazing experiences.
But as New Hampshire Public Radio's Dan Gorenstein reports now, all of this attention may be a good thing.
Weekends on All Things Considered's series, Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.
For writer-director Lawrence Kasdan, whose credits include The Big Chill, The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark, the movie he can't get enough of is Jacques Tourneur's Out of the Past. Kasdan says that the 1947 movie is a great piece of film noir cinema.
President Obama held a pair of campaign rallies today, his first big public events of the 2012 election. He targeted two key battleground states: Ohio and Virginia. NPR's Scott Horsley is traveling with the president and joins weekends on All Things Considered host Guy Raz to talk about the events.
Jason Mraz's 2008 single "I'm Yours" was a multiplatinum global hit. In fact, it set a record by staying on Billboard's Hot 100 chart for 76 weeks — more than any other song in the magazine's 51-year history.
Although Mraz's new record, Love Is a Four Letter Word, was written on the heels of a breakup, the songs are mostly sunny and positive. Mraz says he was more interested in making something relatable than in zeroing in on his own experiences.
Although it always seems fashionable to forecast the downfall of classical music, enterprising musicians both young and not so young continue to make deeply satisfying recordings. For this visit to weekends on All Things Considered, I was delighted to uncover the little known (at least in this country) Jorge Luis Prats, a terrifically talented Cuban pianist whose once uncertain career appears to be resurging — at 55, he has signed a handsome record deal. Then there's The Knights, a young chamber orchestra with a postmodern take on Schubert.
The Obama administration today released a new set of rules for oil and gas drilling on public land. As NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports, the rules are meant to keep companies from polluting water when they use the engineering technique known as fracking.
ELIZABETH SHOGREN, BYLINE: Hydraulic fracturing is what made the current drilling booms possible. Companies force hundreds of thousands of gallons of water, sand, and chemicals deep underground to open up cracks in the rock and make the oil or natural gas flow faster.
So, 115,000 jobs added last month. And on that subject, Mitt Romney had this to say on Fox News today.
MITT ROMNEY: Well, we should be seeing numbers in the 500,000 jobs created per month. This is way, way, way off from what should happen in a normal recovery.
CORNISH: We'll dig into the math of that number. But more on the politics of the moment, we turn to our regular commentators, columnist E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and the Brookings Institution, and David Brooks of the New York Times. Welcome, gentlemen.
That crashing sound you'll hear emanating from cineplexes this weekend will be the sound of comic-book superheroes smashing box-office records.
Actually, the smashing started last weekend, when Marvel's The Avengers opened in 39 territories around the world, scooping up a cool $178 million in three days. And with legions of fans having already bought advance tickets in the U.S., it's a pretty sure bet the box-office bonanza will continue as the film opens in more than 4,000 North American theaters.
The perjury case against baseball star Roger Clemens appeared to be falling apart on Wednesday. Key witness Andy Pettitte, who had previously said Clemens told him he had used human growth hormone, said he was only "50-50" on whether he heard Clemens correctly. And the judge is thinking about striking the Pettitte testimony. Nina Totenberg talks to Robert Siegel.