His projects include a funk band and an Afrobeat tribute to Michael Jackson, but Portland's Ben Darwish is also one of the city's most in-demand jazz pianists. For The Clear Blue Pearl, Darwish began composing during a month-long residence at Caldera in the high desert town of Sisters, Ore. The work began with a single song written there, and later expanded into 10 songs. It tells the story of family members who are in danger of losing their farm to drought, and who head off in search of a mythical underground aquifer — the "Clear Blue Pearl."
Back in 1922, the Maharaja of Patiala commissioned a new dining set ahead of a visit to India by the Prince of Wales. That silver-gilt set — 1,400 pieces — has sold at auction for $3 million. The prince later became King Edward VIII.
Becki Salmon and her fiancé were posing on the banks of a fast-moving creek in a Philadelphia park. That is until a five-year-old boy started drowning right behind them, reports WPVI TV. Salmon, who's a trained lifeguard, jumped into the water and saved the boy.
In White House Down, which opened last Friday, Jamie Foxx plays the president of the United States, who teams up with a Capitol police officer, played by Channing Tatum, and battles terrorists who have taken over the White House. (As the A.V. Club points out, this is at least the third time that director Roland Emmerich has laid waste to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.)
In local television news, one of the most basic ways to appeal to viewers is the constant promise of breaking news. As NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik reports, one station in Louisville, Kentucky is taking a different approach and it's beginning to win attention for it.
DAVID FOLKENFLIK, BYLINE: The spot is for WDRB television in Louisville.
The coming-of-age story is a summer-movie staple — as writers Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, who struck Oscar gold with The Descendants in 2011, can attest.
Their latest film, The Way, Way Back, is another entry in the canon; it's the tale of an awkward teenager, Duncan, who's floundering through a seaside vacation when he's taken under the wing of Owen, the sweetly demented manager of a summer water park. Comedy ensues — and in passing, Duncan learns some important lessons about adulthood.
Common Core — the new set of national education standards in math and English language arts — will take effect in most states next year. This move toward a single set of standards has been embraced by a bipartisan crowd of politicians and educators largely because of what the Common Core standards are replacing: a mess.
In years past, the education landscape was a discord of state standards. A fourth grader in Arkansas could have appeared proficient in reading by his state's standards — but, by the standards of another state, say Massachusetts, not even close.