Colin McEnroe | Connecticut Public Radio
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Colin McEnroe

Host

Colin McEnroe hosts the daily WNPR show, The Colin McEnroe Show. He is a weekly columnist and blogger for The Hartford Courant and a contributing editor at Men's Health. He has recently concluded a series of columns for Bicycling magazine.

He is the author of three books and one play; and his work has appeared on the New York Times Op-Ed Page and in Mirabella, Best Life, Cosmopolitan, Forbes FYI and Mademoiselle. It is not his fault that only one of those magazines still exists. He frequently moderates the Connecticut Forum and teaches media studies at Trinity College. His books, columns, magazine articles and radio shows have won numerous awards, all of which are in boxes somewhere.

There are times when he still can’t believe it’s not butter. 

Ways to Connect

Chion Wolf

Today, we remember Peter Tork of The Monkees. This show originally aired April 25, 2013.

John Lennon said they were the greatest comedy team since the Marx Brothers.

Gene Roddenberry based the look of the character Chekov on them. The Jimi Hendrix Experience got its first U.S. concert work as their opening act.  Their TV show generated the money that launched the movie career of Jack Nicholson.

Joanthan McNicol / Connecticut Public Radio

Elvis left two legacies. Musically, he pulled several American musical traditions out of the shadows, braided them together, and made them mainstream. Personally, he created a far darker template for the way a musical celebrity could be devoured by the very fame he avidly sought.

Recorded live in front of an audience -- and with a band! -- as part of Colin's Freshly Squeezed series at Watkinson School, an hour about the artist who defined the birth of rock and roll and was the genre's first superstar.

Terri D'Arcangelo

How do you make a 100-meter telescope that folds down to three meters so you can tuck it inside a space vehicle? How do you make a heart stent that folds out inside the human body? In each case, researchers have turned to masters of origami, the thousand-year-old art of paper folding.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Don't miss -- for what might just be the sixth year we've done this -- a very badly planned New Year's Eve Eve Eve Eve special featuring chaos muppet and music legend "Big Al" Anderson and the great Jim Chapdelaine!

Diego Lazo / Flickr Creative Commons

2018 has been a doozy of a year. And 2019, well, who knows? But you know what would make you feel a little bit better? Listening to our esteemed panelists and some of their favorite jazz tunes of 2018, a show tradition we've had since 2014.

Vantage Point Veteran Affairs / Google Images

When was the last time you saw someone with a disability? Do you have a loved one who is part of the community? Did you see a character on TV, or did you just pass someone on the street? For some it may take a while to answer that question. Why is that?

Red, White, and Black Eyes Forever / Flickr Creative Commons

Three guests, Peter Sagal of WWDTM, Maria Konnikova of The New Yorker, and Robert Evans of Cracked, take you on a tour of vice. They talk everything from casual sex to marijuana to greed and ostentation to coffee to beer to pornography. Peter and Colin also discuss what the next declared vice will be. Possibly sitting.

Andre Silva / Creative Commons

On the series "NewsRadio," the character played by Phil Hartman once said, "Experience once taught me that behind every toothy grin lies a second row of teeth."

Smiling is a universal way to show happiness. But not all smiles are happy. In reality, we smile less for happiness than for social reasons that have nothing to do with happiness. 

Phil Whitehouse / Flickr Creative Commons

Common wisdom says that once you walk downstairs to the place where the sizes of candidates’ body parts are fodder for discussion, where one presidential nominee calls another “such a nasty woman” in a debate, where middle-finger salutes at the working press become commonplace at presidential rallies, you never go back up those stairs.

On the eve of a midterm, we want to talk about whether that’s true and whether the 2018 political ecosystem caught the coarseness virus from 2016. And how do we get back up those stairs? How do we bleed some of the anger and vulgarity out of our political discourse?

Andrew Turner / Creative Commons

There's a mostly forgotten story by the mostly forgotten sci-fi writer, R.A. Lafferty. It's called, "What's The Name of That Town." We meet a team of scientists and an amusing sentiant computer examining clues that suggested something existed once upon a time and has now been erased.

It turns out to be the city of Chicago which has been obliterated in an accident so traumatic that the city's existence has been wiped from all records and from peoples actual memories.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

One of the things you will learn this hour is how close New Haven came to being a possession of Spain. Even if you think you know the story of the New Haven Regicides, the men who fled to the New World rather than face punishment, by which I mean death, for their complicity in the execution of Charles I, we probably have some surprises for you.  

By we, I mean Lord Charles Spencer, who joins me in studio to talk about his book, Killers of the King. Spencer writes a very brisk and compelling style of history. To put it another way, if you like Game of Thrones, it's a pretty easy leap from there to this story. 

Alfred A. Knopf, Publisher

The Times of London has said that Martin Amis "is as talented a journalist as he is a novelist." His latest collection of essays and reportage covers 1994 through 2017, Travolta through Trump.

Amis joins us for the hour.

Chion Wolf / CT Public Radio

This hour, we talk about two Connecticut dance halls, each springing from the vision of two very different men who took their respective dance halls down very different paths. One's dream soared, bringing thousands of concert-goers to over 3,000 acts over an eleven-year history. The other's dream stalled, his elaborate dance hall sitting idle for decades.

Chion Wolf

Today, we revisit our conversation about two Connecticut dance halls, each springing from the vision of two very different men who took their respective dance halls down very different paths. One's dream soared, bringing thousands of concert-goers to over 3,000 acts over an eleven-year history. The other's dream stalled, his elaborate dance hall sitting idle for decades.

Ben Ervine / Flickr Creative Commons

It's SUMMER! And every year around this time, we gather up a few music mavens who help us analyze and celebrate the kind of music that gets us dancing and singing as soon as it comes on the radio.

Carlos Mejia / CT Public Radio

You probably know Larry Wilmore as the host of the Black on the Air podcast or of Comedy Central's The Nightly Show. Or maybe you know him as The Daily Show with Jon Stewart's Senior Black Correspondent. Or you could know Wilmore as the co-creator of Insecure and The Bernie Mac Show or as a writer on The Office and The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and In Living Color.

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

Who's afraid of the Bix bad Beiderbecke?

Hartford has an amazing jazz history, and Colin has a lot of jazz musician friends. This hour, a little onstage jazz party.

Colin and the panel look to make jazz accessible to mere mortals. They talk about what makes jazz jazz, invite the audience to sing, and teach the audience to scat.

mslavick / flickr creative commons

We've been trying to push this show out for quite a while now. It's been a bit of a strain, and we got kind of backed up.

But, this hour, we let loose a long look at... constipation.

It should be a big relief for everyone involved.

Mary Ellen Mark

It's just a dance, right?

Actually, maybe that's the last thing the prom is. Maybe the photo is even more important, because it freezes you. It's your chance, as high school trickles away, to say "This is who I am. This will be who I was."

We've been looking at prom photos by Mary Ellen Mark, who will be on our show today, and they're striking in the range of emotional states they convey. We see joy, hesitation, confidence, detachment and some flat-out haunted looks.

Phil Guest / flickr creative commons

The bands Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Emerson Lake & Palmer, Rush, Asia, and Styx have sold, literally, hundreds of millions of albums.

And that's despite the fact that This Is Spinal Tap is a devastatingly accurate spoofing of, ya know... all those bands.

This hour: a look at the rise and fall of progressive rock.

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

Matt Taibbi is an American journalist, author, and iconoclast. He is a contributor to Rolling Stone and the author of nine books, the most recent of which are Insane Clown President: Dispatches from the 2016 Circus and I Can't Breathe: A Killing on Bay Street.

Jellaluna / flickr creative commons

In 2016, a Swedish brewery offered for sale artisanally-prepared potato chips. $59 for five chips in what looks like a jeweler's box. They sold out. Crazy, right?

But be honest: Have you gone to more than one place looking for just the right coffee bean or golden beet or ...something? Meanwhile, behind all this posturing, what do Americans really cook and eat?

Alfred A. Knopf, Publisher

The Times of London has said that Martin Amis "is as talented a journalist as he is a novelist." His latest collection of essays and reportage covers 1994 through 2017, Travolta through Trump.

Amis joins us for the hour.

Charles Bulfinch / Creative Commons

Legend holds that years after the the Hartford Convention, a visitor from the South was touring the Old State House and asked to be shown the room where the Convention met. Ushered into the Senate chamber, the southerner looked at the crimson in the face of George Washington in the Gilbert Stuart portrait hanging here and said, "I'll be damned if he's got the blush off yet."

Jonathan McNicol / WNPR

Who's afraid of the Bix bad Beiderbecke?

Hartford has an amazing jazz history, and Colin has a lot of jazz musician friends. This hour, a little onstage jazz party.

Colin and the panel look to make jazz accessible to mere mortals. They talk about what makes jazz jazz, invite the audience to sing, and teach the audience to scat.

mslavick / flickr creative commons

We've been trying to push this show out for quite a while now. It's been a bit of a strain, and we got kind of backed up.

But, this hour, we let loose a long look at... constipation.

It should be a big relief for everyone involved.

Beverly & Pack / Creative Commons

It's cold, snowy winter times like this that make us question why we choose to live in a place where snow, sleet, and wind define one-third of the year.  It's a great excuse to complain, but does it also make us stronger and better people?

eperales / Flickr Creative Commons

Because Thomas Hooker left Massachusetts and founded Connecticut so there could be jazz, we'll take it upon ourselves to look back at the best jazz of last year with people who eat, sleep, drink, and love jazz.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Don't miss -- for the 5th year -- a very badly planned live New Year's Eve special featuring chaos muppet and music legend "Big Al" Anderson and the great Jim Chapdelaine!

Everybody has this feeling that American Democracy isn't what we want it to be right now. It doesn't feel right, it doesn't feel like we're unified even about what the nature of our governance is. 

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