5.1.14: Space Farming, The Birth of 'Cool', Caspar BabyPants, The Bitter Barista & The Audio Orchard
Make a lunch date today with your loyal friend, Word of Mouth. We're revisiting some favorites from the last year, and our nostalgia is set to max capacity. Kicking off the show are two stories about farming. In space. Then hit the juke box and press play for a segment on the origin of 'cool'. Speaking of cool, Chris Ballew of the band The Presidents of the United States of America talks about his family friendly musical persona Caspar Babypants. Then, the internet can provide a place for venting about Ventis. Wrapping up the show, Producer Zach Nugent shares his latest picks for The Audio Orchard.
Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.
- Jesse Hirsch is a staff writer for Modern Farmer, where you can find his article, “Space Farming: The Final Frontier” about what goes into growing out-of-this-world produce.
- NASA just revealed they they are expanding their ISS fresh food production. Space salad, anyone?
- NASA’s Don Pettit has been back from his last mission aboard the International Space Station since July 1, 2012, but his blog “Letters to Earth” remains one of the most fascinating and profound windows into the creative and emotional life of an astronaut. While in space he penned and published poetry, An Astronaut’s Guide to Space Etiquette, and the series, “Diary of a Space Zucchini”, which detailed life on the ISS from the unusual perspective of a self-conscious vegetable. Without further ado may we present “Diary of Space Zucchini”, adapted from Don Pettit’s blog “Letters to Earth”, and starring NHPR’s Sean Hurley as the courageous squash and narrator.
- The search for “cool” has been a quintessential cultural quest for decades: we all want to be cool, but by definition only a select few will ever achieve it, and only for an instant. So what is “cool,” anyway, and why are we so fascinated by the people who make cool? Dan Kois answered that question for us. He's Senior Editor at Slate, which did a month-long series on the nature of cool in September, 2013.
- The Presidents of The United States of America - the same band responsible for the enigmatic 1995 hit single “Lump” - released their 6th studio album in February, 2013, their first since 2008. Since then, PUSA’s frontman Chris Ballew has been keeping himself busy making music geared towards an entirely different generation of listeners: the three and four year old set! Under the alias “Caspar Babypants”, Chris has released 7 albums of children’s music, including a collection of Beatles tunes. In this interview Chris explains why he started making music for families, how “being a parent is a little like being in a penitentiary in 1887."
- Joshua McNichols brings us this piece about Matt Watson AKA Spekulation AKA Bitter Barista. Matt was fired from his job at a well-known coffee chain for his blog posts as the Bitter Barista, but he has since found solace and success.
The Audio Orchard
- Producer Zach Nugent has been scouring the web and local record stores to find great new songs and artists. Here is his awesome new playlist for May.