Saturday playlist

While this week at MPR was dominated by our pledge drive (thank you thank you thank you!), we still managed to get a number of arts stories and interviews out to the public. The week began with the shocking news of Minnesota rapper Eyedea’s sudden death. Take a listen to Chris Roberts’ tribute, and then keep on listening to hear some great book and film interviews as well as a profile of the band STNNNG. Enjoy!

Rapper Eyedea remembered for his lyrical virtuosity

Members of Minnesota’s hip hop community are mourning the loss of one of its brightest stars.

The reader’s guide to travel

Nancy Pearl doesn’t like to travel, but she loves to read about far-off lands. Her new book recommends literature for prospective travelers.

Up and coming novelist Dinaw Mengestu gets rave reviews for new book

Novelist Dinaw Mengestu’s star is rising. He was recently named by the New Yorker as one of the top 20 writers under the age of 40 worth watching. Critics have been raving about this latest book, “How to Read the Air,” which tells the troubled story of Jonas. He’s a young man who lies his way out of difficult situations, whether it be his marriage, or his relationship with his immigrant parents. Mengestu talked with MPR’s Euan Kerr.

Scott Simon’s new book tells story of adoption

National Public Radio’s Scott Simon talks about his new book, “Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other.” In the book, Simon tells the story of how he and his wife adopted their daughters from China — and the story of other adoptive families.

Bill Bryson: The home, up close

Bill Bryson is known for his humorous books on travel, but for his latest he stays closer to home, specifically his own. “At Home” is an intimate look at Bryson’s victorian era home in England, and the history behind some of the everyday items we take for granted.

Garrison Keillor and best-selling author Alexander McCall Smith talk books

Best-selling author Alexander McCall Smith joined Garrison Keillor on stage at the Fitzgerald Theater to talk about literature — and the life of a writer. McCall Smith’s new book is called, “The Charming Quirks of Others.”

Film tells of true-life wrongful conviction drama

Betty Anne Waters once believed everyone in prison was guilty. Then a Massachusetts court sentenced her brother Kenny to life imprisonment for a brutal murder he claimed he hadn’t committed. This set Waters on a remarkable path, which is the subject of a new movie, “Conviction,” which opens this weekend.

The musical chaos of STNNNG

“The Smoke of My Will” is the title of the new album from the blistering Minneapolis indie rock band STNNNG, which the group unveils Saturday night at St. Paul’s Turf Club.

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