On this episode, we remember the late Boyd Elder and celebrate his contributions to the station. Elder was known for his artwork, but became a well-known personality on the air by giving weather reports from Valentine, his home. Marfa Public Radio’s most recent collaboration with Elder was a t-shirt design featuring one of his iconic cow skulls.
This conversation is an archived Talk at Ten interview between former station general manager Tom Michael and Boyd Elder. It was recorded in 2010 when Elder was the featured ArtWalk artist.
They discuss the well-known Big Bend resident’s roots in Valentine, and his career as an artist.
Elder was known for his work with skulls, which appeared on the Eagles album covers One of These Nights, Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975), and The Very Best Of. (Jessica Lutz)
Ryan Paradiso speaks to Lannan resident Mai Der Vang about her collection of poetry, Afterland. The work explores the Hmong (an ethnic group in Southeast Asia) exodus from Laos after The Secret War.
In this conversation, Paradiso and Vang discuss the writer’s decision to break the rules of grammar, the influence a grassroots writing circle had on Vang’s writing, and what it means to create a body of work from the perspective of a Hmong Person.
“[F]or me, it means so much to be able to have written this book, and be able to offer my own kind of truth about the experience of the war, and the experience of growing up Hmong, and the experience of not having a written language or a definitive literary history,” Vang says.
Downtown Midland (Carlos Morales / Marfa Public Radio)
For this episode, we’re highlighting personal essays from UT PB’s Boom or Bust project, which aims “to help promote understanding Permian Basin’s energy and economic resources from a humanistic perspective.”
The essays from Andrea Harbin, Beckwith Thompson, Brittany Thomas, and H.D. Whatley reveal a glimpse into how economic growth and downturns affect residents in the Permian Basin.
On this edition of West Texas Talk, a conversation between Rachel Monroe and current Lannan writer-in-residence, Claire Dederer.
Dederer is the author of two critically acclaimed memoirs: Love and Trouble: A Midlife Reckoning and Poser: My Life in Twenty-Three Yoga Poses, which was a New York Times bestseller.
Currently, she is at work on Monsters, her forthcoming nonfiction book investigating good art made by bad people. The book is based on her viral 2017 essay for the Paris Review, “What Do We Do with the Art of Monstrous Men?”
Dederer is a long-time contributor to the New York Times, and her essays, criticism, and reviews have also appeared in the Paris Review, The Atlantic, The Nation, Vogue, Slate, Salon, New York, Elle, and many other publications.
In this episode, General Manager Elise Pepple joins Diana Nguyen to update listeners on what’s happenin’ at the station.
Here’s what they cover:
- This year, the station received a grant to host storytelling workshops and events in West Texas. This is made possible through a grant from AIR’s project Localore. Find dates and more information here. To sign up for a workshop, shoot an email to email@example.com.
- West Texas Wonders is a journalism initiative the station launched this summer. Listeners submit questions, and we investigate. Check out this page to see the stories we’ve produced from this series, or to submit a question!
- Elise Pepple explains what the deal with our broadcast in Marfa and Fort Davis is. (Hint: We’re using outdated technology.)
- Membership Drive is just around the corner! Our fall drive will run from Monday, October 1 through Friday, October 5. We’ll cap off the week with a block party at the station during Chinati Weekend’s Made in Marfa that Friday.
- Did you miss your favorite music show? Don’t fret! You can listen to any program from the past week here. To find shows from our entire archive beginning in April, head over to our mixcloud.
This week’s West Texas Talk is all about money.
Our guest is investment adviser Tom Jacobs, who also goes by “The Money Man.” Jacob writes a column for the Big Bend Sentinel, where he gives readers financial advice. On this episode, he’s here to answer questions about how to make financially savvy life decisions.
“Keep your debt manageable, try to have as little as possible. If you do that you’re ahead of the game,” said Jacobs.”Then you start looking at things like saving and investing, buying a house, things like that.”
Water on the US-Mexico border is in a precarious state. 6 million people on both sides rely on the Rio Grande, but climate change and population growth are straining the resource.
How are the United States and Mexico planning for the increasing demands on river and groundwater along the border?
Reporters Naveena Sadisavam and Zoë Schlanger explore these questions in the series “Shallow Waters,” a journalistic collaboration between The Texas Observer and Quartz that “the complexities of border water in a hotter, drier world.”
On West Texas Talk this week we hear from Jim Bradbury, an eminent domain attorney, who represents Texas landowners.
In this episode, Bradbury discusses the often convoluted process of eminent domain, which gives power to the state of the federal government to take properties for public use. The law requires just compensation for the taking, but Bradbury says it’s often not enough.
“Eminent domain is an enormous issue,” says Bradbury. “Landowners are really being inundated by this process and being bewildered by it.”
On this episode of West Texas Talk, writer Seamus McGraw talks about his new book, “A Thirsty Land.”
The book explores the depths of water policy in Texas and the often convoluted laws and histories behind it.
Dr. Adrian Vega was a professional educator for twenty years before taking a job with the Sewell family of companies as their chief people officer. As part of this job, he serves as an executive board member of the Education Partnership of the Permian Basin. It’s a new nonprofit focused on increasing the awareness of strengths and challenges of the public education system in the area.
In this conversation, Beauvais and Vega talk about how the organization is hoping to get public and private entities invested in improving education, and the challenges the region faces in making that happen.