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Minnesota Sounds and Voices

  • El Sistema music program strikes against poverty
    These musicians are not ready for the concert hall just yet. The mission of this north Minneapolis program is to help youngsters learn to play and appreciate music. In a new episode of Minnesota Sounds and Voices, MPR News reporter Dan Olson tells us this is also a program designed to overcome poverty.December 12, 2013
  • Lloyd Johnson is 100 and fiddling fine
    Minnesota's latest centenarian Lloyd Johnson, a WWII veteran and local fiddler of Swedish heritage, had two dreams: to play at the Swedish Institute -- which he did this past summer -- and to fiddle with legendary mandolin and fiddle player Peter Ostroushko.December 5, 2013
  • A foreclosure victim's journey to a new home
    Faith Burns lost her home to foreclosure five years ago, even though she was up-to-date on her payments. She has since won a $20,000 settlement and now has a new home, but the emotional and financial wounds have yet to heal.November 27, 2013
  • After typhoon, Philippine native in Minn. heads home to help
    The minute Josephine Fernandez heard about Typhoon Haiyan's devastation of the Philippines, she knew people there would be without food and water.November 22, 2013
  • Paris cafe culture with a Latin groove grows in Minnesota
    Amelia Rivera, who is in her final year as a voice student at the University of Minnesota School of Music, has decided to follow her muse and become a jazz vocalist. A classically trained soprano, Rivera wants to give Minnesota music lovers a taste of the Paris jazz scene.November 15, 2013
  • Veterans given a voice in Library of Congress collection
    Over coffee and cookies, 11 veterans recently shared stories with volunteers at Paradigm Court Reporting and Captioning. They will become part of the Veterans History Project which includes thousands of accounts, all available on line as transcripts, audio or video.November 11, 2013
  • A belated thanks to WWII volunteer for her service to troops
    Veterans Day today will be filled with remembrances of bravery in battle and perseverance at home. Stories like that of Red Cross volunteer, Marian Krinke, don't often get told. On a recent day, though, she led a tour from her armchair through a collection of photographs from WW II and stories that need to be heard before they disappear.November 10, 2013
  • Putting names on unmarked state hospital graves
    The dead here didn't get names, only numbers. Thousands of Minnesotans who were housed in the state's mental hospitals simply disappeared this way. The asylums are long gone, but the unknown graves remain.October 24, 2013
  • Army vet offers Muslim women shelter in a storm
    Sisters Need A Place began informally 15 years ago as Muslim women gathered in homes around the Twin Cities to talk about life over tea and coffee. In 2004, organizers opened a permanent location for the service. Sakinah Ali Mujahid, the shelter's executive director, was honored recently by the Minnesota Humanities Commission for her achievements.October 16, 2013
  • The Millers take the scenic, horse-drawn route
    Life in the slow lane certainly describes Mike Miller's work. He and his wife Barb own and operate a horse drawn carriage business called The Hitching Company. You can see their rigs many nights on Twin Cities streets.September 26, 2013
  • Mel Losh, Ojibwe quill and bead artist, wants to keep a dying tradition alive
    Mel Losh one of the few remaining masters of this traditional Ojibwe craft. But he worries no one is following in his footsteps to learn the fast disappearing skills.September 18, 2013
  • Bruce Vento preserve reclaims sacred Dakota Indian site
    Just east of downtown St. Paul there's a 27-acre preserve named in memory of the late Minnesota congressman Bruce Vento. But the Dakota people know it as something else: Wakan Tipi, or sacred house. Before too long, the sanctuary there will include an education and interpretive center for visitors.September 5, 2013
  • Butch Thompson, a Minnesota jazz classic for the ages
    Butch Thompson's childhood fascination with cowboy tunes gave way to New Orleans-style jazz after his father took him to a Louis Armstrong concert at Northrop Auditorium in Minneapolis. In the decades after came performances, played and heard, that shaped a life in music.August 29, 2013
  • Bemidji residents use food to stitch together community
    On one level, Bemidji, Minn., thrives. But poverty is high and there's a racial divide. One way some residents are trying to make connections is through growing and using food differently.August 22, 2013
  • In Milan, Micronesian immigrants add vibrancy
    One Minnesota community that has been able to establish a vibrant identity in the face of the pressures on rural America is Milan, near the South Dakota border. One reason has been an influx of immigrants from Micronesia -- islands in the South Pacific Ocean.August 21, 2013

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