St. Louis on the Air | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis on the Air

Noon-1 p.m. and 10-11 p.m. (repeat) Monday-Friday
  • Local Host Don Marsh

St. Louis on the Air creates a unique space where guests and listeners can share ideas and opinions with respect and honesty. Whether exploring issues and challenges confronting our region, discussing the latest innovations in science and technology, taking a closer look at our history or talking with authors, artists and musicians, St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region.

St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary EdwardsAlex HeuerEvie Hemphill and Lara Hamdan give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.

William Freivogel (left) and Shula Neuman (right) discuss the implications of Sinclair Broadcast Group's requirment for local stations to read their recent statment regarding "fake news."
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

Sinclair Broadcast Group, the largest owner of local television stations in the country, recently required its news anchors to read a scripted statement that accused other media outlets of disseminating "fake news."

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh went behind the headlines to discuss the issues raised by the statement that had led to public outcry. The broadcast company faces backlash from media critics for the conservative slant of their stations' news reporting and other programming decisions.

Catherine Werner is the director of sustainability in the mayor’s office.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

Within a global context of climate change, individual attention to butterfly gardens, light bulbs, recycling and other efforts can sometimes seem rather futile. Catherine Werner is familiar with that notion – and with persuading people that such relatively small things do in fact matter.

“You think, ‘Oh, well, what can I do, and what’s one little light bulb going to do to make a difference?’” Werner said during Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air. “But if you do your whole apartment or your whole home, and then you tell it to your neighbor and they do it next door, it really does add up and can make quite a difference.”

Tiny Desk Happy Hour showcases 3 St. Louis bands

Apr 5, 2018
STLPR’s Lindsay Toler (at left) and local musician Paige Alyssa discussed the broad spectrum of musical styles demonstrated among the local groups who entered this year’s competition.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

More than 50 St. Louis-area bands responded to the call for submissions to the 2018 Tiny Desk Contest from NPR Music over the past few weeks. And this year, Paige Alyssa made sure her group was one of them.

“[Last year] I was like, ‘Next year I’m going to make sure I get that going,’” Alyssa said on Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air in conversation with host Don Marsh. “And so I got me and my band together, and we got into a practice room at my job and pulled my desk in there, and we set the tone and got the vibe right. And we just did a few takes of ‘The Plug,’ and here we are.”

Longtime St. Louisans (from left) Mike Jones, Jamala Rogers and Virvus Jones joined Wednesday’s show to reflect on the impact of what occurred on April 4, 1968.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

Mike Jones remembers being “shocked but not surprised” when he heard that Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. had been murdered.

The assassination of the civil rights leader occurred a half-century ago this week in Memphis, Tennessee, when Jones was a 19-year-old freshman at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

“The forces in America that have been against black progress have always taken black lives,” Jones said during a St. Louis on the Air conversation marking the 50-year anniversary of King’s death. “Black lives have always had less value in America. And men and women who actually fight for that kind of change usually do not live to be old men or old women, so no, you wouldn’t be surprised.”

The bibimbap bowl at VP Square is a dish from Sauce Magazine's 'Hit List' for April 2018.
Michelle Volansky | Sauce Magazine

On Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh talked with our partners from Sauce Magazine about the best new restaurants to try during the month of April.

Joining him for the discussion were Catherine Klene and Matt Sorrell, managing editor and staff writer, respectively.

Gwen Moore is curator of urban landscape and community identity.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

The history of civil rights in St. Louis is compelling and complex.

More than 245,000 people have visited an exhibit at the Missouri History Museum detailing the area’s civil rights history. It closes April 15 after a 13-month run. 

“I think it tells us that people are really interested in St. Louis history and that they will turn out when you present that history to them,” explained Gwen Moore. “I think that we’ve done that in a very compelling way.”

Sonja Perryman has found her niche at the intersection of storylines and public health.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

Sonja Perryman’s love for storytelling developed early in life, along with her sense of its potential to impact lives. She has vivid memories of reading “The Baby-Sitters Club” books as a girl and telling her father about one particular character in the series.

“I was like, ‘Yeah, she has diabetes, and she’s always thirsty and always hungry,’” Perryman recalled in a conversation this week on St. Louis on the Air. “And I remember my dad’s face going pale – well, as pale as it could go, but he looked like he saw a ghost – and he was like, ‘What were her symptoms again?’”

Anna Quindlen fields a question from Don Marsh during last week’s event.
Photo courtesy of St. Louis County Library

On Monday’s St. Louis on the Air, listeners heard host Don Marsh in conversation with bestselling novelist Anna Quindlen. She was in town last week for a book-signing event presented by St. Louis County Library, and Marsh interviewed her on stage before an audience of more than 200 people.

Among many other topics, the discussion touched on Quindlen’s decision to give up a Pulitzer Prize-winning career in journalism to become a full-time novelist.

A painting of William H. Gass hangs in Washington University's Olin Library. (Detail; oil on canvas, 1995, Marion Miller)
Image courtesy of Washington University

The writings of the late author and philosopher William H. Gass have a reputation for being cerebrally intimidating to some would-be readers. But when Joel Minor opened one of Gass’ books for the first time years ago, he was pleasantly surprised by a sense of accessibility.

“I found his work very approachable,” said Minor, who now oversees the Modern Literature Collection where Gass’ literary archive is housed. “‘Middle C’ is, I think, a very engrossing, approachable book. If you go into it knowing it’s not going to be a strictly linear narrative from start to finish, you’re going to be able to follow it and really appreciate his ability to work the language in a unique way in this character’s perspective.”

Basketball players huddle for a prayer at the Monsanto Family YMCA.
Ryan Delaney | St. Louis Public Radio

For Marcus Wilson, basketball is more than just a game — and he has the career to prove it. Before becoming the executive director of the Monsanto Family YMCA, Wilson learned that basketball could take him far in life and away from the rough neighborhood he came from.

Now he wants to make sure others have that same opportunity.

Every Saturday morning, Wilson opens the court of his YMCA off of Page Blvd., free of charge for anyone wanting to play basketball.

MADCO, Saint Louis Ballet and The Big Muddy Dance Company all come together this weekend for “New Dance Horizons VI: Live at the Grandel” presented by Dance St. Louis.
Gerry Love

Several weeks’ worth of intensive collaboration will culminate this Saturday as three local dance companies present brand-new works during a performance that is really three shows in one.

On Thursday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh discussed what makes the “New Dance Horizons VI: Live at the Grandel” event particularly unique. Joining the conversation were Brian Enos, artistic director of The Big Muddy Dance Company, and Terence Marling, artistic consultant for Dance St. Louis.

Madalyn Painter Talla started a Thanksgiving Day tradition with her family where she cooks biryani, a time intensive rice dish.
Madalyn Painter Talla | St. Louis Public Radio

India is one of the most populated and diverse countries – and some of its nuances are reflected in its cuisine.

Joining host Don Marsh to discuss the diverse flavors, styles and recipes of Indian cuisine was Sauce Magazine’s art director, Meera Nagarajan, and her mother Revathy Nagarajan. They focused on the food varieties in north and south India and dispelled common misconceptions about the cuisine. They stressed that curry is not only a spice, but rather a number of dishes, and that not all Indian food is spicy.

(L-R) Mark Smith, Jennifer Joyce and William Freivogel discussed current issues pertaining to the law.
Lara Hamdan | St. Louis Public Radio

Former St. Louis circuit attorney Jennifer Joyce joined our Legal Roundtable on Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air, alongside recurring guests Mark Smith, associate vice chancellor of students at Washington University, and William Freivogel, journalism professor at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.

St. Louis CPA Lance Weiss joined Don Marsh on Tuesday.
Lara Hamdan | St. Louis Public Radio

On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh discussed what you need to know in advance of filing state and federal tax returns that must be postmarked by April 17.

Lance Weiss, a certified public accountant and partner with SFW Partners LLC in St. Louis, joined the program to answer listener questions about taxes – and provide an update on changes for the 2018 tax year after recently approved tax law changes.

Waters continue to rise around I-55 near Butler Hill on Wednesday morning. May 2017
File Photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Due to heavy rain in the St. Louis region, multiple streams throughout eastern and central Missouri are being monitored by the National Weather Service. The agency has issued several flood warnings for this evening. 

Flood warnings are indicative of when rivers are expected to exceed the flood stage, where human impact begins.

Sisters Sadia (left) and Yusra (right) Ali talked about CAIR-MO’s annual art exhbit showcasing various local Muslim talent.
David Kovaluk | St. Louis Public Radio

Sisters Sadia and Yusra Ali are Muslims who’ve grown up in Ballwin, Missouri, sharing a love and appreciation of fine arts. In their circles, such creative pursuit is fairly uncommon.

“We’re always looking for the most secure line of work, the most unique line of study, the most secure relationship,” Sadia Ali said of her community. “And art is a challenge for security.”

Police Chief John Hayden responded to a wide range of questions from host Don Marsh and from listeners during Monday’s talk show.
Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis began 2018 with a brand-new police chief, John Hayden, in place – and with a double homicide occurring on New Year’s Day. Three months later, the city’s high rate of violent crime remains a key challenge along with the need to rebuild trust with citizens in the wake of protests.

Both issues loomed large on Monday’s St. Louis on the Air as Hayden discussed his leadership of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department thus far.

Eric Greitens sits alongside his wife, Sheena Greitens, and Attorney General Josh Hawley and his wife, Erin Morrow Hawley.
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

On the latest edition of the Politically Speaking podcast, St. Louis Public Radio’s Jason Rosenbaum, Jo Mannies and Rachel Lippmann round up this week’s legal and political news surrounding Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens.

This week’s episode zeroes in on how Greitens’ political plight is weighing on other political figures — including Attorney General Josh Hawley.

Belleville News-Democrat reporter Joe Bustos discussed the results of Tuesday’s election.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

Chicago-based billionaire J.B. Pritzker has already sunk $70 million of his own money into his gubernatorial campaign, and incumbent Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has spent $50 million himself. That spending will only increase as the Democratic and Republican party nominees, respectively, now look toward the general election later this year.

But how much of the candidates’ resources will be directed downstate is yet to be seen, said Belleville News-Democrat reporter Joe Bustos. He joined St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh for a discussion of this week’s primary election results.

A total of 293 objects discovered in the Mediterranean Sea comprise “Sunken Cities: Egypt’s Lost Worlds,” an exhibition that runs from March 25 to Sept. 9.
Christoph Gerigk © Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

As an underwater archaeologist, Franck Goddio has explored many strange and fascinating things under the sea during the course of his career. But nothing quite compares to the moment he first came across the remains of an ancient city just off the coast of modern-day Egypt.

The president of the European Institute for Underwater Archaeology described what that experience was like on this week’s St. Louis on the Air in conversation with host Don Marsh and Lisa Çakmak, associate curator of ancient art at the Saint Louis Art Museum.

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