25 January 2006

Snelby > Aired 25 Jan 2006

Locally-produced radio today on Listening Lounge. Dedicated KFAI volunteer Bill Lindeke continues our local street-corners theme with a documentary exploring the intersection of Snelling and Selby in Saint Paul. Filled with the sounds of place, this piece connects us to the history and stories of a neighborhood through interviews with small business owners.

18 January 2006

Mongolia Exchanges > Aired 18 Jan 2006

We dug deep and pulled together three documentaries describing cultural exchanges between Mongolia and the US. Exchanges between cowboy musicians, healers and radio stations.
From Sagebrush to Steppe produced by Hal Cannon of the Western Folklife Center In September 2005, a group of American cowboys traveled to Mongolia for a musical exchange.
Shamans by Allan Coukell introduces us to two shamans: one living a traditional life among the reindeer herders, one with a tent 'clinic' in the capital city. It also tells how a bunch of westerners set off on a foolish errand to save a couple of poisoned kids.
Finally, Massachusetts/Mongolia Sister Project from Jay Allison and Viki Merrick of Atlantic Public Media and WCAI/WNAN. A public radio station in Massachusetts pioneered a unique radio exchange with Gobi Wave, a Developing Radio Partners -supported station in Mongolia. We love the idea of exchanging local, everyday sounds across so many miles, something that ties two places together in the minds of each station's listeners. What a creative use of the possibilities new technology lays open to us. You may notice that the story we aired and all these links point to the very beginnings of this exchange, and imply there is much "more to come". Unfortunately, LL has learned that the post-script to this story reminds us that technology's limitations sometimes trump its potential. The sister station project was scuttled when Gobi Wave's computer servers failed to live up to the new demands placed on them.

11 January 2006

Secrets/Suicide > Aired Jan 11 2006

This week, two stories in a somber vein. Post Secrets by producer Aaron Henkin is an extended interview with artist Frank Warren, who has become the recipient of thousands of secrets submitted from anonymous individuals by postcard. We highly recommend you take a look at his site, because the visual aspect of many of these postcard secrets is really remarkable. This image of Frida is one example. Next, Four Seconds: Suicide off the Golden Gate Bridge a portrait of a friend and a personal struggle for meaning from Jake Warga. Subtle, moving and beautifully crafted.

04 January 2006

Ukraine Democracy > Aired 4 Jan 2006


The orange-revolution, led by Viktor Yushchenko, was a dramatic expression of people power. How much more democratic can political action get than in the mass exercise of the popular will?

This week we continue with the BBC series Looking for Democracy. Robin Lustig produced this week's piece, Ukraine: People's Democracy (including an interesting parallel between borscht and democratic governance).

The conditions were all in place for the campaign of street protests to be effective. There was a charismatic leader figure, a growing and educated middle class, an independent (enough) judiciary - and, a point often overlooked, a renewed pride in the country (a result, not least, of triumph in the Eurovision song contest). And yet there are real drawbacks to people power. The expectations on Yuschenko to deliver are now immense - far more so than if his victory had arisen purely through the ballot box.

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We finish with Thomas Grove's Return to Shaklat.