Tuesday, September 28, 2021

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The Culture Buzz

Greetings, Cultural Catalysts:


The Covid-19 pandemic persists. Be safe. Be considerate. Be compassionate. But, continue to be creative.
– John Busbee for The Culture Buzz
Quote of the Week
“People never improve unless they look to some standard or example higher and better than themselves.” – Tyron Edwards (1809-1894) American theologian
This week’s guests on The Culture Buzz – 
11:00 AM – Iowa author Carol Bodensteiner anchors a conversation about writing, journaling and capturing memoir moments during the pandemic. Her writing has been honored, and her insights are welcome during these times, giving new inspiration to everyone seeking ways to building a series of family stories.
11:17 AM – The incomparable musician Susan Werner releases her newest album, FLYOVER COUNTRY, and takes a few minutes out of her creative schedule to chat about its creation. Few artists can fill songs with wit, wisdom and irresistible content like Susan.
11:33 AM – Susan Werner sings “Snake Oil,” one of an album-full of great tracks from her latest, FLYOVER COUNTRY.
11:35 AM – Phillip Goodrich PhD returns to the show to continue a timely and informative dialogue about SCOTUS, the history of America’s judicial system, and his new book, Somersett: Or Why and How Benjamin Franklin Orchestrated the American Revolution.
11:52 AM – A track honoring the legacy of Lee Shaw “Blues II,” with long-time collaborator, John Tedeski.
12:00 PM – Award-winning author and journalist Evan Osnos shares insights about his new book, Joe Biden: The Life, the Run, and What Matters Now. Evan provides insights into why this deep dive about Joe Biden is so important and revealing.
“[From] an immensely talented reporter for The New Yorker, ably takes the measure of the man and the politician, presenting a picture of the Democratic nominee that is in a few ways unexpected.”  —The Washington Post
12:16 PM – Dr. Charles E. Connerly has penned a book for the times, and one all Iowans who love this state and want to see its future secure, should take to heart. “Green, Fair, and Prosperous: Paths to a Sustainable Iowa” is a marvelous and highly readable analysis of where we are and where we should go. In addition to getting this book directly from U. of Iowa Press, it is available at Prairie Lights Bookstore and Beaverdale Books.
“Rural population loss, an eroding natural environment, fewer union jobs, and a lack of racial diversity affect Iowa’s economic future. Dr. Connerly’s book shows how Iowa can reverse these trends to create good jobs with a green and sustainable economic future.” – David Osterberg, cofounder, The Iowa Policy Project
12:32 PM – Susan Shapiro Barash, hailed as one of the leading researchers and writers about women relationships, especially mother-daughter relationships, shares thought-provoking glimpses into her exceptional book, You’re Grounded Forever…But First Let’s Go Shopping. This book holds a vast range of interviews from across America, giving the reader exceptional insights into the many diverse dynamics that define mother-daughter relationships.
“As the father of three daughters, I found so many things in this eye-opening, well-researched book that resonated with me deeply. I was eager to give it to my wife and daughters to read–to help them understand and enrich the bonds between them.”
 Jeffrey Zaslow, co-author of The Last Lecture
12:44 PM – Dennis Maulsby reads one of his works, “Feathers and Fur.”
12:53 PM – Poet Freddy Niagara Fonseca reads “Tango in Buenos Aires” from his new collection, “The Bomb That Blew Up God.”
12:55 PM – Susan Werner gives us a musical exclamation point to this week’s program with her sassy story about a farm woman done wrong in “Egg Money” from her brilliant album HAYSEED.
Of major importance for the many fans of The Culture Buzz and KFMG programming:
Please consider helping KFMG to continue as “Your Community Voice” by providing financial assistance. KFMG now has a GoFundMe page:
You can also easily donate by making a contribution with a credit card through our supporters at Tikly at this direct link: https://app.tikly.co/kfmg989, or by calling KFMG at 515-244-4145 or 244-4146 (if you call to donate, please leave a message if the phone is not answered). If you wish to donate we WILL call you back. You can always donate by mailing a check or money order directly to KFMG at:
KFMGPO Box 41143Des Moines, IA 50311
Thank you for your kind consideration. Any and all support is very beneficial.
Cultural nuggets – 

  1. The Des Moines Community Playhouse continues live theatre, socially distanced and with COVID protocols in place, with Weekend Comedy (thru Sun Nov 8) and I and You (thru Sun Nov 15) in repertory to open their 2020-2021 season. Exceptional precautions are being taken to safeguard their patrons, while honoring the desires of those same patrons seeking a live performing arts experience again. https://www.dmplayhouse.com/
  2. Polk County Heritage Gallery  ***Call for photos!*** 2020 has been an. . . interesting year. Let’s be honest it needs to F/STOP.  We’re excited to announce our 3rd themed exhibit. Submit the photos that will help us all to remember this dumpster-fire of a year! The exhibit, and awards ceremony, will all be virtual.


  1. Kevin Spire is a knowledgeable guide in the realm of genealogy, and a longtime member of the Iowa Genealogy Society. He will be conducting a free class, the Beginning Genealogy classes that I teach with the Iowa Genealogical Society. Kevin will offer this class on Thu, Oct 29 at 6:30 PM CT. This is a FREE class and will be offered via Zoom, so you don’t even have to travel any further than to your computer! If interested, follow the link and register. http://iowagenealogy.org/?p=10073&fbclid=IwAR0lSLZd1GUKU39dTrcKhEfHcfVIJhmsvjRTec405ehQUiAYeOlTvHIky-E
  1. The Ames Town & Gown Chamber Music Association is delighted to announce an exceptional online concert series this fall, presenting five special programs through our website free of charge, (www.amestownandgown) through December 18. Through these exceptional programs, we hope to connect with our audience and other classical music lovers, while also supporting musicians and the chamber music industry.

Beaverdale Books offers curbside service, or delivery service.
http://beaverdalebooks.com/      515-279-5400
Top Ten sellers in our store last month – see what everyone’s reading!

  1. Bess the Barn Stands Strong, Elizabeth Gilbert Bedia*
  2. Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, Isabel Wilkerson
  3. Rage, Bob Woodward
  4. Transcendent Kingdom, Yaa Gyasi
  5. All the Devils Are Here, Louise Penny
  6. Iowa State Parks: A Century of Stewardship 1920-2020, Rebecca Conard*
  7. The Vanishing Half, Brit Bennett
  8. Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children in a Racially Unjust America, Jennifer Harvey*
  9. Love, Zac, Reid Forgrave*
  10. Disloyal: A Memoir: The True Story of the Former Personal Attorney to President Donald J. Trump, Michael Cohen

*Iowa Author!
Ongoing conversations with Callista Gould always deliver useful information. So much any merging or established professional could use is in her book, which, as she says, is “Best. Graduation Gift. Ever.” The book, The Exceptional Professional: What You Need to Know to Grow Your Career, is the perfect gift for that graduating daughter, son, grandchild, niece, nephew or good friend’s or neighbor’s child who never writes a thank you note. Check out https://cultureandmanners.com/ to get a copy for someone you care about.
PERFORMING & VISUAL ARTS plus Other Cultural Consideration
Please check in advance regarding any scheduled performances, exhibitions, museum visits, etc.
Ankeny Community Theatre – www.ankenycommunitytheatre.com; Facebook: Ankeny Community Theatre
Carousel Theatre of Indianola – www.carouseltheatre.org; Faceook: Carousel Theatre Indianola
Class Act Productions – www.captheatre.org; Facebook: CAPTheatre
Des Moines Community Playhouse/Kate Goldman Theatre – www.dmplayhouse.com; Facebook: DMPlayhouse
Des Moines Performing Arts/Temple Theater – www.desmoinesperformingarts.org; Facebook: Des Moines Performing Arts
Des Moines Young Artists’ Theatre – www.dmyat.org; Facebook: DM Young Artists Theatre
Iowa Shakespeare Experience – www.iowashakespeare.org; Facebook: Iowa Shakespeare Experience
Iowa Stage Theatre Company – www.iowastage.org; Facebook: Iowa Stage Theatre Company
Pyramid Theatre Company – www.pyramidtheatre.org; Facebook: Pyramid Theatre Company
Tallgrass Theatre Company – www.tallgrasstheatre.org; Facebook: Tallgrass Theatre Company
TheatreMidwest – www.theatremidwest.org; Facebook: TheatreMidwest
Urbandale Community Theatre – www.urbandaletheatre.com; Facebook: Urbandale Community Theatre
AUDITIONS and Cultural Engagement Opportunities:
Check with galleries, organizations, destinations you frequented before the pandemic. Many are producing creative and unique ways to engage again…get your cultural fix.

  1. Civic Music Association announces its 2020-2021 Season. Check it out. https://civicmusic.org/concerts/
  2. The Des Moines Symphony will present an appealing series of concert experiences. Check for details. https://www.dmsymphony.org/

Greater Des Moines Independent Book Store Happenings:
The Culture Buzz shares many authors and their books with its audiences. We encourage you to visit your local independent book store regularly. The folks at these destination locations know books, and welcome the chance to help anyone connect with titles and subjects they seek. Check these sites, as their calendars are always filled with enticing activities and news.

Prep Iowa
  1. Beaverdale Books, Des Moines. http://www.beaverdalebooks.com/
  2. Pageturners Bookstore, Indianola. http://www.pageturnersbookstore.com/
  3. Artisan Gallery 218, 218-5th Street, Historic Valley Junction, West Des Moines (select author events), http://www.artisangallery218.com/
  4. Read a Book Nook, Marshalltown. https://read-a-book-nook.business.site/

Cultural Exploration Resources:
The Culture Buzz will begin including carefully vetted but comprehensive listings where you can do some advance online exploration before scheduling destinations in the region. These are two great websites to know about:

  1. The Culture Buzz – John Busbee and associates have re-launched the website for The Culture Buzz, providing cultural adventurers a comprehensive overview of what The Culture Buzz provides. Included in this new site, by popular demand, is an archive library of favorite interviews and a new section of theatre reviews for Greater Des Moines theatre companies. http://www.TheCultureBuzz.com/
  2. Center Stage – This Cityview monthly column provides insights into Central Iowa’s theatre. Distributed throughout the region and available online. Current column: http://www.dmcityview.com/center-stage
  3. Cityview – Central Iowa’s monthly printed and continually updated online resource to all things happening in your community, from arts & culture, to music, to civic and political discourse, to fascinating columnists and stories. Cityview is the reliable source for keeping you informed and engaged in the Greater Des Moines community and beyond. http://www.dmcityview.com/
  4. Art Beacon Des Moines is Central Iowa’s home for promoting the visual arts. Our calendar of events highlights exhibitions, art talks and calls for art. Subscribe to the Art Beacon Weekly, our online newsletter filled with links to the latest art happenings. Find us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. http://artbeacondesmoines.com/
  5. 900Views Podcast. An exploration of arts and community with Host Pat Boddy. Based out of Mainframe Studios in downtown Des Moines, 900Views provides a platform for glimpsing the creative work and lives of the Midwest’s cultural producers and influencers. https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/900views-pat-boddy-RCELj1xc7Wh/
  6. Greater Des Moines Community Jazz Center is this region’s source for a decades-established advocacy group for jazz, and established jazz professionals guiding and nurturing next generations of jazz musicians and fans. http://dmcommunityjazzcenter.org/
  7. Central Iowa Blues Society is the area’s connecting point for performance, presentations and education in the world of blues. www.cibs.org

Resources to help, support and guide during any challenges you or someone you care about may be experiencing:

  •  1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or info@nami.org
    United Way 211: Dial 211, text ZIP code to 898211 or visit 211iowa.org
    CICIL: #CICILServes COVID-19 Hotline: (866) 44-CICIL
    Trans Lifeline: (877) 565-8860
    LGBT National Youth Talkline: (800) 246-7743
    LGBT National Talkline: (888) 843-4564
    Des Moines Pastoral Counseling Center: dmpcc.org
    Broadlawns 24/7 Crisis Team: (515) 282-5752
    Your Life Iowa Help Line: (855) 581-8111
    Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
    Broadlawns Psychiatric Urgent Care: (515) 282-2200
    Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741 to be connected to crisis counseling
    Online Mental Health Crisis Chat: iowacrisischat.org
    MercyOne Des Moines Behavioral Health Clinic: 515-643-9030.
    Prelude Behavioral Services (substance treatment): 515-262-0349

As always, I appreciate news and information from you out there in the cultural trenches and am ready and willing to pursue a story or interview to share with my audiences. ♦

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