Arts & Culture

Katie Sikora

Shortly after Cherice Harrison-Nelson, otherwise known as Queen Reesie, donned her Mardi Gras feathers and crown in 2020, she began to see many people in her community contract COVID-19.

Harry Shearer
Harry Shearer / Harry Shearer

In this, the first week of the Biden administration, Harry brings us It’s a Smart World, Harry Reads the Trades, News of Bees, News of the Olympic Movement, News of NiceCorps, The Apologies of the Week and great music.

Plus, Harry debuts a new segment called "From The Annals of Pettiness" and then commemorates both Tom Brokaw’s retirement and the late Larry King.

This week on The Reading Life: novelist Ladee Hubbard, author of “The Rib King,” which tells the story of the patriarch of the family we met in her first book, "The Talented Ribkins." We'll also hear from Arthur Hardy, publisher of Arthur Hardy's Mardi Gras Guide, now in its 45th edition.

American Routes Shortcuts: Dion

Jan 22, 2021
Dion and the Belmonts
American Routes

This is American Routes, following the roots of doo-wop music into rock and roll as part of the life of singer and songmaker Dion DiMucci. Dion was born into a Bronx, New York Italian family in 1939. His father was in vaudeville. Dion gained notoriety as a singer with an appearance on American Bandstand. Back in the neighborhood, he made street music called doo-wop.  I asked Dion how an immigrants’ son from the Bronx was able to channel the Southern music of his youth into doo-wop and rock and roll.



Photo credit: Lexi Lewis

The character of America’s first black Renaissance man comes to light in the New Orleans debut of The World is My Home: The Life of Paul Robeson.  It’s a one man show, written and performed by Los Angeles actor and playwright Stogie Kenyatta. It opens this weekend at the Jefferson Performing Arts Center.  Stogie Kenyatta joins us by phone from L.A.

Performances run Saturday, January 23rd at 7:30pm and Sunday, January 24th at 2:00 pm at the Jefferson Performing Arts Center, 6400 Airline Drive.  More info is online at