West Texas Talk

West Texas Talk — Marfa Public Radio’s flagship program — made its debut when the station launched and is now a repository of hundreds of local profiles.

The program features discussions about regional issues and topics with residents and experts. Whether looking at immigration on the border, delving into West Texas history, or having conversations about the Big Bend’s changing towns we hope to explore the topics that matter most to residents.

The show also celebrates the creative spirit of Far West Texas and features conversations with writers, musicians, filmmakers, and artists who both live here and pass through the region. 

Subscribe to the West Texas Talk podcast on Apple Podcasts.

West Texas Talk broadcasts on Thursday at 6 pm and rebroadcasts Friday at 9 am.

The show’s theme music was composed by Andy Stack.

Recently on West Texas Talk:

Wednesday, Sep 24, 2014:
Tift Merritt at the Trans-Pecos Festival of Music + Love

Talk at Ten brings you Tift Merritt, a Texas-born singer-songwriter who lives in North Carolina and New York City. Merritt’s album Tambourine was nominated for Best Country Album in 2004, and her musical stylings have been compared to those of Emmylou Harris and Joni Mitchell.

Merritt has hosted an artist-to-artist podcast for KRTS, The Spark with Tift Merritt. On the show, she’s interviewed performers such as Patty Griffin, Rosanne Cash, and Nick Hornby. On Thursday night, Merritt will perform at the Trans-Pecos Music Festival at El Cosmico in Marfa, playing alongside the Heartless Bastards, Bill Callahan, Gaby Moreno, and Mother Falcon.

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Tuesday, Sep 23, 2014:
Journalist Alex Chadwick

Today’s guest, Alex Chadwick, was instrumental in the development of NPR’s Morning Edition, and has worked for CBS and ABC as well as NPR. During his career, Chadwick has received recognition for his work, including two Lowell Thomas Awards and a Sigma Delta Chi Award. With producer Ray Farkas, Chadwick spearheaded Interviews 50 Cents, a video series for Slate V featuring interviews with ordinary people from around the country.

Currently, Chadwick hosts BirdNote, a radio show featuring stories about birds and the environment. Leading up to National Land Public Lands Day on September 27th, the latest BirdNote series explore natural phenomena in Big Bend National Park.

Friday, Sep 19, 2014:
Lannan Foundation Writer-in-Residence David Biespiel

Host Cory Lovell speaks with David Biespiel, author of three books of poetry as well as two books of prose on writing/poetry. He founded and directs the Attic Institute of Arts and Letters in Portland, Oregon, which teaches writing through onsite workshops with visiting writers.

Biespiel will be reading at The Marfa Book Company on Saturday, September 20th at 6 PM.

Friday, Sep 19, 2014:
Brad Lancaster on Harvesting Rainwater Strategies

Today’s Talk at Ten features drylands permaculture designer and educator Brad Lancaster, author of the award-winning series, Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond, which offers strategies on how to plan and implement effective water-harvesting systems.

Lancaster has lectured across the globe, from the Middle East to Australia, and has worked closely with the city of Tucson to improve its water-harvesting practices. His own home in Tucson features a system that can harvest up to 100,000 gallons of rainwater annually.

This Friday in Alpine, Brad Lancaster will speak at the Granada Theatre at 7 PM, followed by a workshop on Saturday (8 AM-2 PM) at the Alpine Public Library. In Marfa, Lancaster’s lecture takes place Saturday 7 PM at the Crowley Theater, followed by a workshop (9 AM-3 PM) at Marfa International School on Sunday. Admission is free, but workshop space is limited, so make your reservation at bigbendrainwater@gmail.com.

Thursday, Sep 18, 2014:
7th Annual Midsummer Night’s Dream Garden Party

Host K. Yoland speaks with secretary Elaine Harmon and president Cyndee Barnes of Friends of the Jeff Davis County Library about the 7th Annual Midsummer Night’s Dream Garden Party on September 21st at 4 PM.

Taking place in the garden of the Hotel Limpia in Fort Davis, Elizabethian enthusiasts will perform excerpts from Hamlet, Hamlette, and more.

This free event will have refreshments, live Elizabethian music, and a drawing for a Kindle HDX tablet.

Wednesday, Sep 17, 2014:
David Oliver and His Accordion on Traditional Folk Music from North-East England

Musician and music educator David Oliver has spent his life in Northumbria, in the North-East of England. He visits Talk At Ten today to discuss the English folk music tradition. He plays accordion, leads folk dance bands, and calls dances.

Formerly a high school principal, Oliver has served since 1993 as Education Director of Folkworks, a non-profit arts organization dedicated to the promotion of the traditional music. He lectures widely and is a co-author of Folk Voiceworks (2008)  and English Folk Tunes for Accordion (2007).

On the program, he uses the accordion to describe different types of music and tells stories of the power of music worldwide. Oliver also makes a political prediction about the future of Scotland.

Tuesday, Sep 16, 2014:
William Vizcarra at The Wrong Store

Copyright William Vizcarra

Copyright William Vizcarra

Ciudad Juárez artist William Vizcarra will be showing About Lines at The Wrong Store.

About Lines is William’s study into the duality properties of lines in relation to contrasting mix-media. His use of concrete, paper and ink are inspired by Japanese calligraphy lines, woodcuts and the process of repetition.

About Lines will be shown until September 28.

Monday, Sep 15, 2014:
Lannan Foundation Poet-in-Residence Ishion Hutchinson Talks His Process, Reads Poetry

Image from www.ishionhutchinson.com

Image from www.ishionhutchinson.com

Host Cory W. Lovell interviews former Lannan Foundation poet-in-residence Ishion Hutchinson.

Hutchinson was born in Port Antonio, Jamaica.  His first poetry collection, Far District: Poems (2010), won the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award. Other honors include a 2013 Whiting Writers’ Award and the Academy of American Poets’ Larry Levis Prize. His work has appeared in Ploughshares, Granta, The Huffington Post, Poetry Review, Caribbean Review of Books, Poetry International, and The Los Angeles Review, among other journals and anthologies. He is an Assistant Professor of English at Cornell University.

Friday, Sep 12, 2014:
Minor Musics Japan Comes to Marfa

Host K. Yoland is joined by KRTS reporter Jefferson Yen to discuss contemporary Japanese musician-composers Ché-SHIZU, Maher Shalal Hash Baz, and A Qui Ave Gabriel, who are on a U.S nationwide tour. Organizer and musician Che Chen and producer J.D. DiFabbio join them to discuss the tour and the music.

Hosted by Marfa Live Arts, the bands will perform at the Crowley Theater in Marfa on Sunday, September 14 at 7 PM as a part of Minor Musics Japan.

Thursday, Sep 11, 2014:
An Evening with Susan Graham at the Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center

Susan Graham, 2010.

Susan Graham, 2010.

Susan Graham, one of the world’s foremost stars of opera and recital, returns to her hometown to perform with the Midland-Odessa Symphony & Chorale at the Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center on Saturday, September 13th, at 7:30 PM. Susan speaks with host Tom Michael about her music and her return to Midland.