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Andy Summers on A Certain Strangeness

Andy Summers, guitarist of the rock band The Police, discusses his photography, his thoughtful approach to creating art, and how his music career has complemented his image-making. His new book with prominent French photographer and critic Gilles Mora—A Certain Strangeness—is out now. Joining us from his home studio in Los Angeles, musician and photographer Andy Summers talks about the artistic rigor he applies not only to his career as a Grammy-winning musician, but also to his life as an...


Panel Discussion on Inclusion and Equity in Austin, Texas

Virginia Cumberbatch, Leslie Blair, and Doyin Oyeniyi discuss the story of integrating the University of Texas at Austin, the ongoing struggle for inclusion and equity on campus, Austin’s chronic problems with racial and economic inequality, and upholding the city’s progressive reputation. Following a Texas Book Festival panel “Making History: The Civil Rights Movement in Texas,” we invited three of the panelists for a longer discussion on diversity and inclusion in Austin—both on and off...


Dawoud Bey on Seeing Deeply

Award-winning photographer Dawoud Bey takes us through his forty-year career in photography working on ambitious and resonant projects that focus on race, diversity, and youth in America. We cover major bodies of work: "Harlem, U.S.A.", his Type 55 Polaroid street portraits, his 20 × 24 Polaroid works, "Class Pictures", and "The Birmingham Project," delving into his photographic process and the thoughtfulness he brings to his form and artistic practice. Dawoud share the personal connections...


Lance Scott Walker on Houston Rap Tapes: An Oral History of Bayou City Hip-Hop

Writer Lance Scott Walker has collected stories and interviews from Houston's rappers, DJs, producers, promoters, and record label owners since 2005. In the new amplified edition of his book HOUSTON RAP TAPES, he includes new photographs and interviews (Scarface, Slim Thug, Lez Moné, B L A C K I E, Lil’ Keke, and Sire Jukebox of the original Ghetto Boys), plus custom maps of Houston that highlight major landmarks for the city's hip-hop culture. Recorded on DJ Screw's birthday, this...


Geoff Dyer on The Street Philosophy of Garry Winogrand

Award-winning writer Geoff Dyer on how Garry Winogrand's photographs inspired him to use images as an agent of narrative. We chat with Geoff Dyer about the "visual novelist" and street photographer Garry Winogrand. Dyer highlights the wild humor of Winogrand's eye, how his photographs are packed with narrative potential, how Dyer approached writing short vignettes to complement Winogrand's images in the literary style of John Szarkowski’s 'Atget' or Mark Strand's 'On Edward Hopper,' and the...


Brian “B+” Cross, Ghostnotes: Music of the Unplayed

Hip-hop/rap photographer B+ recalls a career mixing music and photography to evoke the exchanges and creators that shaped scenes and sounds from Ethiopia to Los Angeles. In this probing conversation, B+ digs into the intentions behind his project to reveal the rhythmic connections among people, cultures, and their creations, sharing stories of the record collector who shaped DJ Shadow’s sound, his close friendships with composers David Axelrod and Horace Tapscott, and more. We delve into the...


Khalik Allah and Eli Reed: Souls Against the Concrete

Young photographer Khalik Allah talks with Eli Reed, award-winning Magnum photojournalist since 1988, about a life of photography and filmmaking. In this charming exchange, Khalik Allah and Eli Reed share their experiences navigating rough neighborhoods, earning the trust of their subjects, learning from their mistakes, and developing a unique style that stands out in the digital age. We also talk about Khalik's work with the Wu-Tang Clan, his experience working as a filmmaker on Beyoncé's...


Victor Emanuel and S. Kirk Walsh on One More Warbler

One of America’s foremost birders recalls a lifetime of birding adventures, including friendships with luminaries Peter Matthiessen, and George Plimpton. In this touching discussion, we talk with renowned birder and dyed-in-the-wool Texan Victor Emanuel and writer S. Kirk Walsh about the importance of taking the time to observe natural beauty, protect it, and the path Victor took from politics to a life of birding. We cover tips for a birding excursion, Victor's friendship with Laura Bush...


Julie Wernersbach and Carolyn Tracy on The Swimming Holes of Texas

Native Texan Carolyn Tracy and New York transplant Julie Wernersbach talk about how to enjoy and protect the many freshwater swimming holes across the state of Texas. Where there is water, there is life. In this casual conversation, we cover the process of researching must-swim spots across Texas, the history of these significant sites, and the importance of being good stewards to our natural swimming holes. We also cover top 5 lists, key etiquette, and the best playlists for a good summer...


Eddie Wilson and Jesse Sublett, Armadillo World Headquarters

Eddie Wilson and Jesse Sublett talk with cultural historian Jason Mellard, sharing wild memories of founding and running Austin's legendary music venue and discussing its role in launching progressive country and making Austin, Texas, the live music capital of the world. What made Austin the city we know today? Eddie Wilson has seen the Texas capital transform from a sleepy college town into a global purveyor of music culture, all while booking and housing seminal bands of the 1970s, serving...


Carolyn Boyd and Jessica Lee on The White Shaman Mural

Carolyn Boyd and Jessica Lee, both of the Shumla Archaeological Research & Education Center, describe the profound discoveries they’ve uncovered researching the ‘oldest known book in North America’, the White Shaman mural in Lower Pecos, Texas. In this fascinating discussion, we explore the significance of a massive, conceptually complex piece of rock art that was painted by hunter gatherers within a week to two week period between 400 BC and 400 AD. We cover the graphic vocabulary that...


Robert McNeely on The Making of Hillary Clinton

Bill Clinton’s official White House photographer talks candidly about documenting the political process without bias and gaining the trust of a very private woman. From a base camp darkroom in Vietnam to street photography in San Francisco to the political stage, this interview with Bob McNeely traces his life as a photographer and offers honest insight into Hillary’s personality and career, wrestling with both the promise of her capabilities and the problems of her political history. Hear...


Paul Youngquist on A Pure Solar World

Paul Youngquist unpacks how Sun Ra’s unabashed creativity challenged a history of racial confinement and fueled hope for the future. A Pure Solar World explores how Sun Ra was a master of jazz composition, a pioneer in electronic music, a major African American poet, and an expansively free-thinking teacher. Author Paul Youngquist talks to us about the philosophy behind Sun Ra's space music, how audiences first responded to his music and his message, and why his work deserves more attention....


Mando Rayo and Jarod Neece on The Tacos of Texas

Taco journalists Mando Rayo and Jarod Neece evangelize taco culture in Texas. Mando Rayo and Jarod Neece drove over 7,000 miles sampling tacos in 10 major Texas taco hubs to build a community of taco lovers. The culmination of their journey is the new indispensable guide, The Tacos of Texas. We talked to them about their road trip and the process of enlisting community leaders, knowledgeable locals, and abuelitas to delve deeper than Yelp reviews and capture authentic taco culture.


Kristin Hersh on Don't Suck, Don't Die

In conjunction with new paperback release of Don’t Suck, Don’t Die, singer-songwriter Kristin Hersh reflects on her relationship with the late musician Vic Chesnutt and her commitment to telling the truth through her art. This enriching conversation unpacks how creating art is like raising a child, how not to suck as a creative person, and how pain should be part of becoming a healer. Hersh honors Vic, sharing her favorite memories from the road and explaining why she finally agreed to write...


William Hogeland on Founding Finance

William Hogeland describes the class conflicts in Colonial and Early Republican America. Refuting claims from both the political right and left, this dynamic narrative history brings to life the long-forgotten founding struggles over American finance, economics, and taxes and reveals their immense and startling relevance to political struggles today. About the book:


Margaret Guroff on The Mechanical Horse

Margaret Guroff reflects on how she synthesized a wealth of research on the bicycle into one narrative and how being a cyclist informed her writing. From the draisine to the latest carbon fiber frame, the bicycle has endured boom and bust to make a lasting impact on our lives. We talk with Margaret Guroff about how the bicycle helped to revolutionize urban infrastructure, technology, gender equality, mechanized aircraft, and more. Now that the middle class is returning to car-dominated...


Andrea Valdez on How to Be a Texan

Texas Monthly editor Andrea Valdez unpacks which Texas activities comprise the classic Texan identity and why they should be appreciated. Texas is very innovative in a lot of ways but also holds tight to its past and its traditions. Some Texan traditions are obvious, but others took some digging, like drawing on water dousing skills to find water during contemporary droughts. We ask Andrea Valdez what research she conducted to write an authoritative how-to manual on Texas life, how she feels...


David Cantwell on Merle Haggard: The Running Kind

David Cantwell talks about Haggard's roots, influences, music, and style. Focusing on the most prolific decades in the career of this complex, often contradictory icon of country music, David Cantwell explores the creation of many of Merle Haggard’s greatest hits and the life and times that inspired them. Check out Cantwell's Spotify playlist linked below and listen along to 'Merle Haggard: The Running Kind.' Spotify playlist:...


Sarah Bird on A Love Letter to Texas Women

Acclaimed author Sarah Bird gushes over the Texas women who taught her the pioneer principle of “neighboring”—fostering friendliness among women. Texas women have a uniquely global brand of strength, humor, and grace. We ask non-native Texan Sarah Bird what about the culture of friendly femininity won her over, what her mother taught her, iconic Texas women like Ladybird Johnson and Molly Ivins, and what it means to hunger for the companionship of other women. About the book:...