West Texas Talk

West Texas Talk is your weekday interview program on Marfa Public Radio, at 6:30 PM.

West Texas Talk features interviews with community members discussing issues that affect our region, along with upcoming local programs and events. You’ll also hear from local and visiting, artists, musicians, authors, scientists, and other interesting personalities.

Before March 2015, the program was known as Talk At Ten and was broadcast live at 10 AM.

The program made its debut when the station launched, and as a result, it’s become a repository of hundreds of local profiles. The program is hosted by a revolving list of community members. The theme music for West Texas Talk was composed by Andy Stack.

Do you have an idea for a West Texas Talk  topic or guest suggestion? Email diana (at) marfapublicradio (dot) org. Below is a list of current interviews. See previous interviews here.

NEW: Listeners can now sign up for our podcast feed on iTunes. Subscribe today.

Recently on West Texas Talk:

Thursday, Jun 22, 2017:
Summer Shakeup – DJ Camp with DJ Bigface and Chulita Vinyl Club

On this edition of West Texas Talk, a conversation with  Javier Arredondo (DJ Bigface) and members of the Austin chapter of the Chulita Vinyl Club.

They’re the instructors of the DJ Camp, put on in collaboration with Ballroom Marfa for Marfa ISD’s Summer Shakeup program. During the camp, the kids are learning the basics of DJing, from building a playlist to spinning and scratching.

Summer Shakeup DJ Camp 2017 ; via Sarah Melendez

The collaboration is being capped off with a DJ set including all the young DJs involved on on Friday, June 23, starting at 6 pm at Bar Nadar, located at the Saint George in Marfa.


Thursday, Jun 22, 2017:

On tonight’s episode of West Texas Talk,Jackson Wisdorf is joined in the Marfa Public Radio studios by Siamese , who recently played at El Cosmico in Marfa.

The first show back in their home state of Texas after a West Coast Tour.

Tuesday, Jun 20, 2017:
Charlotte Reemts, the Nature Conservancy and Operation Ponderosa

On tonight’s West Texas Talk, we hear from Charlotte Reemts, a research and monitoring ecologist with the Nature Conservancy in Texas. She talks to us about the conservancy’s role in Texas, its collaboration with the Texas A&M Forest Service on “Operation Ponderosa”, and what makes the Davis Mountains so unique.  You can find out more about the Nature Conservancy here.


Tuesday, Jun 20, 2017:
Florists Mark and Jane Knox

On this episode of West Texas Talk, Elise Pepple speaks with florist Mark Knox, and his wife, Jane.

They reflect on 57 years in the floral business running Mark Knox Flowers, the numerous leadership positions they’ve both held in the city of Odessa (and beyond), and the special role of flowers in the Permian Basin. Don’t miss these lovely stories: From the customer that always complained to choosing the right blooms for a 92-year-old.

Friday, Jun 16, 2017:
Father’s Day Stories

In celebration of Father’s Day, we reached out to our listeners to tell us stories about their dads. Thanks to Cate Cole Schrim, Charlotte Browning, Martin and Alvin Dreyer, Lauren Furr, Chloe Gallagher and Mike Green for sharing their stories.

Thursday, Jun 15, 2017:
Summer Mummers

On tonight’s West Texas Talk, Elise Pepple speaks with Timothy Jebsen and Justin Tate from Midland Community Theatre. They’re performing in the 69th season of Summer Mummers, one of the longest running staged melodramas in the country. They discuss how the performers first got involved in theater, why comedy is important, and why you shouldn’t wear nice clothes (or fancy rings) to the show.

Summer Mummer runs from June 2 to September 2, 2017 at the Yucca Theatre in Midland. For more information, visit https://summermummers.com or www.mctmidland.org.

Wednesday, Jun 14, 2017:
State of the Station

General manager Elise Pepple updates listeners about what’s been happening at the station. There are several new initiatives such as live storytelling events, the independent producer fund, a residency program, and the station’s public radio think tank.

In the midst of these exciting new programs, the station has also welcomed new people the radio family. Laurel Coniglio has joined the team as development director, and John Cone is our new engineer. Additionally, our Spring internship cycle just ended and the station bids farewell to Zoe Kurland, but welcomes incoming interns Elizabeth Trovall, Bayla Metzger, and Caroline Halter.

The station is always looking for ways to serve listeners better. Let us know what you’re thinking by filling out our survey!

Tuesday, Jun 13, 2017:
Professor and Director Bret Scott

On this episode of West Texas Talk, Zoe Kurland speaks with Bret Scott, an assistant professor at Sul Ross State University and the director of The 39 Steps from the Theatre of the Big Bend. Scott talks about his time as a working actor, and about teaching film at the Red Sea Institute of Cinematic Arts in Aqaba, Jordan.

This production of The 39 Steps is an adaptation written by Patrick Barlow, based on the 1915 novel written by John Buchan and the 1935 film by Alfred Hitchcock. The original concept and production uses only four actors to play a variety of characters. Scott describes it as a farcical comedy.

A Preview Dress Rehearsal on June 16, 2017 is open to the public. Opening night is Saturday, June 17, 2017. All performances are at 8:15pm at the Kokernot Outdoor Theatre in Alpine. For more information, call (432) 837-8218 or visit www.sulross.edu/theatre.

Friday, Jun 9, 2017:
Lannan Resident: Chinelo Okparanta

On tonight’s West Texas Talk, a conversation with Lannan writer-in-residence Chinelo Okparanta.

Okparanta Under the Udala Trees (2015) and Happiness, Like Water (2013). One of Granta’s six New Voices for 2012, she was a finalist for the 2014 Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative and was short-listed for the 2013 Caine Prize in African Writing.

Her work was nominated for the 2016 NAACP Image Awards in Fiction as well as for the 2016 Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Legacy Award in Fiction – Okparanta’s stories have appeared in The New Yorker, Granta, Tin House, The Kenyon Review, among others.

Thursday, Jun 8, 2017:
Emily Raboteau

On this episode of West Texas Talk, Elise sits down with author and Lannan Fellow Emily Raboteau. Raboteau is the author of a novel, The Professor’s Daughter (Henry Holt) and a work of creative nonfiction, Searching for Zion (Grove/Atlantic), named a best book of 2013 by The Huffington Post and The San Francisco Chronicle, a finalist for the Hurston Wright Legacy Award, grand prize winner of the New York Book Festival, and winner of a 2014 American Book Award.

Raboteau’s fiction and essays have been widely published and anthologized in Best American Short Stories, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Tin House, Buzzfeed, Literary Hub, The Guardian, Guernica, VQR, The Believer, Salon,  and elsewhere.  Honors include a Pushcart Prize, The Chicago Tribune’s Nelson Algren Award, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the MacDowell Colony.  An avid world traveler, Raboteau resides in New York City and teaches creative writing in Harlem at City College, once known as “the poor man’s Harvard.”