West Texas Talk

West Texas Talk is an interview program that airs Thursday at 6 pm, and rebroadcasts Friday at 9 am.

The program 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.

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.

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

Recently on West Texas Talk:

Thursday, Jan 10, 2019:
Jenny George

On this Edition of West Texas Talk, a conversation with current Lannan Writer-in Residence, Jenny George.

George is the author of The Dream of Reason, published by Copper Canyon Press, and also a winner of the “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize, as well as a recipient of fellowships from The Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, the MacDowell Colony, and Yaddo.

She currently lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she works in social justice philanthropy.

Thursday, Jan 3, 2019:
Live Stories of Risk, Love, and Heartbreak

On this episode, we’re revisiting a few of our favorite live stories from 2018.

Last year, we held workshops all around West Texas and hosted a few events in the Big Bend and the Permian Basin. We wanted to highlight some of the storytellers who participated.

The first story was told this past April at our event “All or Nothing: Stories of Big Risks.” Chloe Gallagher lives in Marfa and is the DJ of the show “Wreck Shop” here at the station. She says when she’s not complaining about the heat in the kitchen at Stellina, she can be found talking to flowers and trying to befriend stray dogs.

The second story was told at our February event “Kiss and Tell: Live Stories from Midland.” Randy Ham is the executive director at Odessa Arts, and told a story about friendship.

Joel Hernandez told the last story at “Kiss and Tell: Live Stories from Marfa.”  He’s from Marfa and makes music under the moniker “Kashmir.” You can check out his music here.

Big thanks to these storytellers, and to everyone who’s participated over the last year at our events and workshops

Thursday, Dec 27, 2018:
Richard Maxwell’s Marfa Ads: “What Do You Believe?”

We’ve been re-broadcasting some of our favorite 2018 segments for the month of December. On this episode,  you’ll hear monologues from Big Bend residents answering the question: “What do you believe?”

These monologues, or “advertisements,” are a production of New York-based playwright and director Richard Maxwell. He started “Ads” in 2010, and has produced different versions in communities around the world.

Recently, he created a version of the play in Marfa as a Chinati artist-in-residence. The play debuted during Chinati Weekend this past October and included nearly thirty members of the local community.

The monologues you’ll hear in this episode are from John Sufficool, Natalie Melendez, Primo Carrasco, Ester Sanchez, Darby Hillman, Eliseo Martinez, Sterry Butcher, and Jim Martinez.

Thanks to the participants, Richard Maxwell and the Chinati Foundation for sharing these stories.

Thursday, Dec 20, 2018:
A Selection Of Stories From The 2018 Marfa Transom Traveling Workshop

In August, ten students from around the country came to the station to learn the craft of radio storytelling with the Transom Traveling Workshop. The class was taught by Rob Rosenthal, the lead teacher for the Transom Story Workshop and Matt Largey,  the managing editor for Austin’s public radio station KUT.

This episode showcases a few of the diverse profiles produced during this week.

Stories in this episode were produced by Martin Brusewitz-Hernandez, Aaron Naparstek, and Rachel Templeton.

 

Thursday, Dec 13, 2018:
West Texas Wonders: Your Questions About The Marfa Lights, 4-way Stops, Abandoned Buildings, and Marfa Sewage… Answered!

On this episode, we’re showcasing some of our favorite stories from “West Texas Wonders” – a journalism initiative where you ask, and we answer.

You’ll hear answers to:
“What’s the real story behind the Marfa Lights?”
“What are you supposed to do at a 4-way stop?”
“What’s up with the abandoned skyscrapers in downtown Midland?”
“Is it true that the Marfa sewer system was built by German POWs?”

You can submit a question or listen to all our the stories from the series here.

Thursday, Dec 6, 2018:
Re-broadcast: Claire Dederer Asks “What Do We Do With The Art Of Monstrous Men?”

For the rest of December, we’ll be revisiting our favorite interviews and stories from the past year on West Texas Talk

In September, Rachel Monroe spoke to writer Claire Dederer when she was in town for a residency with the Lannan Foundation. Dederer is the author of two acclaimed memoirs –Poser: My Life in Twenty-Three Yoga Poses and Love and Trouble: A Midlife Reckoning. 

She’s currently working on Monsters, her forthcoming book that investigates 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 ReviewThe AtlanticThe NationVogueSlateSalonNew YorkElle, and many other publications.

Thursday, Nov 29, 2018:
Kimberlé Crenshaw Returns To Marfa

On this episode of West Texas Talk, Elise Pepple sits down with critical race theorist Dr. Kimberlé Crenshaw. They unpack a term Crenshaw coined in 1989 as a framework for understanding how different forms of discrimination overlap to affect marginalized people — intersectionality.

Crenshaw is a law professor at UCLA and Columbia Law school, where she directs the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies. She’s also a co-founder of the African American Policy Forum, an innovative think tank that connects academics, activists, and policymakers to promote efforts to dismantle structural inequality. Her work has been central to understanding how race, sex, ability, gender, age, and class impact multilayered discrimination.

Crenshaw will read as a Lannan writer-in-residence at the Crowley Theater in Marfa on Sunday, December 2nd at 6pm.

Thursday, Nov 22, 2018:
def.sound Brings Melanin and Sunlight to Marfa

On this episode of West Texas Talk, Diana Nguyen speaks to def.sound — a Los Angeles-based writer, producer, and musical artist. They discuss his music and influences.

His forthcoming album “Colored” is expected to be released in 2019.

You can listen to def.sound’s music here.

Thursday, Nov 15, 2018:
The View from Rural Communities with The Texas Tribune

This is a conversation from The Texas Tribune’s symposium on rural Texas. The panel took place earlier this week in College Station, where lawmakers, advocates, and local officials discussed the future of rural education, health care, natural resource preservation, infrastructure investment, and the state’s economic future.

During this panel, Texas Tribune CEO Evan Smith, Oldham County Judge Donnie Allred, Palmhurst Mayor Ramiro Rodriguez, and Marfa’s Mayor Ann Marie Nafziger discuss the changes and challenges rural communities face.

 

Thursday, Nov 8, 2018:
Lance Scott Walker, Author of “Houston Rap Tapes: An Oral History of Bayou City Hip-Hop”

On this episode, Diana Nguyen speaks to writer Lance Scott Walker, author of Houston Rap Tapes: An Oral History of Bayou City Hip-Hop (University of Texas Press, 2018). They discuss the history and far-reaching influence of Houston’s rap scene.