Weekend Edition Saturday

Saturdays 8:00am-10:00am

Whether revealing events in small-town America or overseas, or profiling notable personalities, Weekend Edition from NPR News appreciates the extraordinary details that make up every story. This two-hour weekend morning newsmagazine covers hard news, a wide variety of newsmakers, and cultural stories with care, accuracy, and a wink of humor.

Weekend Edition Saturday wraps up the week's news and offers a mix of analysis and features on a wide range of topics, including arts, sports, entertainment, and human interest stories. The two-hour program is hosted by NPR's Peabody Award-winning Scott Simon

 

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Author Interviews
5:00 am
Sat October 22, 2011

The Harpers Ferry 'Rising' That Hastened Civil War

Tony Horwitz has written for The Wall Street Journal and The New Yorker. His books include Confederates in the Attic and Baghdad Without a Map.

Courtesy of Tony Horwitz

On the evening of Oct. 16, 1859, abolitionist John Brown led 21 men down the road to Harpers Ferry in what is today West Virginia. The plan was to take the town's federal armory and, ultimately, ignite a nationwide uprising against slavery.

The raid failed, but six years later, Brown's dream was realized and slavery became illegal.

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Monkey See
12:01 am
Sat October 22, 2011

'Klitschko': Brothers And Boxers Who Fight Hard, But Never Each Other

If you think your kids have the potential for major sibling rivalry, consider the Klitschko Brothers, Wladimir and Vitali. They're the first brothers to hold world boxing titles simultaneously.

Director Sebastian Dehnhardt tells their story in a new documentary simply called Klitschko, and they talk about their story with Scott Simon Saturday on Weekend Edition.

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Music Interviews
6:01 pm
Fri October 21, 2011

Coldplay: Four Best Friends, Powered By Chemistry

Coldplay's fifth album, Mylo Xyloto, comes out Oct. 25.

Sarah Lee

In 2002, when the British rock band Coldplay was on tour with its second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head, frontman Chris Martin said, "I just want to make the best music of all time with my best friends." Since that time, Coldplay, with Jonny Buckland on guitar, Guy Berryman on bass and Will Champion on drums, has become one of the biggest acts in rock.

NPR's Scott Simon spoke with Martin and Champion on the occasion of their fifth album, Mylo Xyloto, due out this week. Martin says that, at the very least, the part about friends is still true.

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Sports
8:50 am
Sat October 15, 2011

117 Years Of Racing Stats Put To Pasture At The Track

The Daily Racing Form is the newspaper of the thoroughbred industry. The first one was published in Chicago on Nov. 17, 1894. The Keeneland race track in Lexington, Ky., holds a vast collection and is attempting to establish a digital archive.

Noah Adams NPR

Many horse racing fans swear by — and sometimes possibly at — the Daily Racing Form. It's the newspaper of the thoroughbred industry.

Before you bet that exacta, you can check out a horse's pedigree, race experience and morning workout times. You'll see which mares have been bred to which stallions.

The Keeneland race track in Lexington, Ky., holds a vast collection of Daily Racing Form issues, and further efforts are under way to preserve every issue and establish a digital archive.

Want To Pick A Winner? Read The Form

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History
8:00 am
Sat October 15, 2011

'Moneycrats,' 'Devil Fish' And More Wall Street Protests

Protests against big banks and Wall Street are nothing new in American history. Host Scott Simon talks to Professor Steven Fraser of Columbia University about how the Occupy Wall Street protests fit into that history.

From Our Listeners
8:00 am
Sat October 15, 2011

Your Letters: The Military-Civilian Gap

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, host: Time for your letters.

(SOUNDBITE OF TYPEWRITER AND MUSIC)

SIMON: Hundreds of responses to a story last week by NPR's Tom Bowman about a study by the Pew Research Center. The study found many civilians and military leaders don't share the same views on patriotism, or on who should bear the burdens of war in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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NPR Story
8:00 am
Sat October 15, 2011

Unintended Consequences Emerge From Ala. Immigration Law

Alabama has what many consider to be the strictest anti-immigration law in the country. Now that the law has been in effect for a few weeks, the state's residents are starting to see what some of the unintended consequences are. Andrew Yeager of member station WBHM reports from Birmingham.

Simon Says
8:00 am
Sat October 15, 2011

Baseball's New Bling Is Made For Believers

In this week's essay, host Scott Simon reflects on the comforting superstitions of athletes.

The Picture Show
6:52 am
Sat October 15, 2011

A Woman Of Photos And Firsts, Ruth Gruber At 100

Ruth Gruber, Alaska, 1941-43

Photographer unknown Courtesy of International Center of Photography

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 11:20 am

At the age of 100, Ruth Gruber is responsible for a lot of firsts. When she was just 20, she became the youngest Ph.D. ever at the University of Cologne in Germany. She was the first photojournalist, much less female journalist, to travel to and cover both the Soviet Arctic and Siberian gulag. She documented Holocaust survivors and the plight of the ship, the Exodus 1947.

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Music Interviews
4:57 am
Sat October 15, 2011

A Grand Musical Thinker, Inviting 'Friendly Experiencers'

Anthony Braxton has just released the recording of his fifth opera, Trillium E.

Michael Weintrob Tri-Centric Foundation

The rap on composer and multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton has always been that his music is difficult.

But Braxton himself is far from austere. He's easily approachable, so much so that he uses the term "friendly experiencer" to describe his audience.

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Music Interviews
5:46 pm
Fri October 14, 2011

Evanescence: Thrashing Guitars, Angelic Vocals

Evanescence's self-titled third album is out this week.

Courtesy of the artist

Goth metal has always been a niche genre, but over the years, a few artists have found ways to give it Top 40 appeal. Evanescence has pulled off that trick with two multiplatinum albums: Fallen in 2004 and The Open Door in 2006, both of which unite loud, heavy guitars and drums with the ethereal voice of singer Amy Lee.

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Monkey See
8:46 am
Sat October 8, 2011

Sports From 'The Onion': A New Book Explores 'The Ecstasy Of Defeat'

Brett Favre, seen here looking bummed in 2010, is one of the many sports figures taking a drubbing in the new sports book from the editors of The Onion.

Jamie Squire Getty Images

Originally published on Sat October 8, 2011 5:04 pm

I'm going to make a confession. I have enjoyed many of the same Onion headlines as everyone else over the years, from the exploits of presidents and Congress to the activities of store clerks and sad dads. But their sports coverage, while it's passed around somewhat less often and is a bit less well-known, is generally my favorite stuff they do.

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NPR Story
8:00 am
Sat October 8, 2011

Romney Focuses On Security; Voters Weigh His Faith

While people were talking about the religion of former Gov. Mitt Romney at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, Romney was wrapping up a two-day swing through South Carolina. Romney finished fourth in this state's primary in 2008, and his Mormonism was one of the issues seen as holding him back. This time around, there's been less talk about religion and more about policy, but Romney still has a tough row to hoe in this early-voting state. NPR's Ari Shapiro explains why.

Author Interviews
8:00 am
Sat October 8, 2011

'Turquoise Palace' A True Political Murder Mystery

On Sept. 17, 1992, a group of Iranian and Kurdish opposition leaders were assassinated in a Greek restaurant in Berlin. Despite pressures to keep the investigation at the lowest possible level, a German prosecutor unraveled a tangle of threads that led to Iran's Supreme Leader himself. Host Scott Simon speaks with Roya Hakakian, author of the new book, Assassins of the Turquoise Palace.

Theater
5:00 am
Sat October 8, 2011

Frank Langella On Acting, Aging And Being Very Bad

'Man' Of Some Importance: Actor Frank Langella (left, with Adam Driver) anchors the Roundabout Theatre Company's Man and Boy, about a highflying financier whose empire hangs by a thread.

Joan Marcus

Nobody glowers like Frank Langella. The man who brought Richard Nixon to life in his Tony Award-winning turn in Frost/Nixon and who was a true lizard in Seascape is now playing Gregor Antonescu, an acclaimed international financier who was exposed as a flagrant and successful fraud.

He's starring in a revival of Terrence Rattigan's 1963 play Man and Boy, which has its opening night Oct. 9. The play centers on the sudden reunion of the father (Langella) and the son he'd thought was dead. (Actually, the son's just living in Greenwich Village.)

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Author Interviews
4:53 am
Sat October 8, 2011

The 'Blue Horse' That Inspired A Children's Book

Eric Carle Penguin Young Readers Group

Originally published on Fri April 27, 2012 3:44 pm

Even if you don't know the name Eric Carle, his work has probably made you smile. He's the author and illustrator of more than 70 children's books, including The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? His books brim with bold and unique collages, bursting with color and clever words.

Carle has a new children's book about an artist who — like the author — enjoys stepping out of the box. It's called The Artist Who Painted A Blue Horse.

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Country/Americana
4:37 pm
Fri October 7, 2011

The McClymonts: Country-Singing Sisters From Australia

The McClymonts recently moved to the country-music mecca of Nashville after topping the charts in Australia.

Courtesy of the artist

Brooke, Samantha and Mollie McClymont are three sisters from Australia who have topped the charts Down Under — singing country music. Now, they're bringing their voices topside.

As The McClymonts, the three sisters have just released their latest album, Wrapped Up Good, and recently relocated to Nashville.

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The Record
3:30 pm
Fri October 7, 2011

Sloan: How To Make A Band Last 20 Years

Sloan, in a recent press shot. The band is, from left to right, Chris Murphy (bass), Andrew Scott (drums), Patrick Pentland and Jay Ferguson (both guitarists).

Courtesy of Yep Roc

Four guys. Ten albums. 20 years.

The unlikely story of the band Sloan starts in Halifax, Nova Scotia, a college city in eastern Canada's Maritime provinces. It was there where four young musicians — Jay Ferguson, Chris Murphy, Patrick Pentland and Andrew Scott — met and started playing together.

"We played our very first show at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Halifax, Nova Scotia, February 1991," Ferguson, one of the guitarists, remembers. "We played in the cafeteria."

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Television
8:00 am
Sat October 1, 2011

'Homeland' Stars Torture And Terrorism, But Truth?

Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 3:41 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, Host:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.

"Homeland" premieres tomorrow night on Showtime. It's a psychological espionage thriller that centers on a CIA officer, played by Claire Danes, who hears about a conspiracy when she gets a tip from a terrorist who is about to be executed by the Iraqi government.

(SOUNDBITE OF TV SERIES, "HOMELAND")

CLAIRE DANES: (as Carrie Anderson) You said you were an important man. You said you had information about an attack on Abu Nasir.

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Europe
8:00 am
Sat October 1, 2011

Fat Tax Lands On Denmark's Favorite Foods

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, host: Times are tough in Europe these days. But if you crave comfort food in Denmark to lift your mood, it'll cost you. Starting today, shoppers in Denmark will pay extra kroner, according to the saturated fat levels of certain foods. Not just potato chips, ice cream, sweet rolls and candy bars, but famously clean, creamy Danish butter.

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Simon Says
8:00 am
Sat October 1, 2011

White House Visit No Happy Ending For '85 Bears

The Chicago Bears showed some skills off the field and on the stage in 1985 when they recorded the "Super Bowl Shuffle."
Paul Natkin NFL via Getty

Next week, the Chicago Bears, who won the 1985 Super Bowl, will finally be received at the White House — now that a Bears fan lives there. Their original visit was canceled when the Challenger Space Shuttle exploded in January 1986.

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Around the Nation
8:00 am
Sat October 1, 2011

Pumpkins At A Premium, Thanks To Hurricane Irene

Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 3:41 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, Host:

There's something missing this year from the fall scenery in the Northeast, especially in upstate New York. The state is normally a top pumpkin producer, but about a third of its crop was destroyed in the recent tropical storms.

Marie Cusick, of NPR member station WMHT in Albany, takes us to one farm that was spared.

MARIE CUSICK: There's no shortage of pumpkins at the Black Horse Farms roadside stand in Athens, New York. But some customers still aren't taking any chances.

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