Archive for August, 2011

Becoming human

Spend the evening with Nova discovering fresh clues about our earliest ancestors

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Watch the full episode. See more NOVA.

Tonight, Nova presents a three-part look at how humans got to where they are today.

In part one, “First Steps” follows what set our ancestors on the path from ape to human six million years ago. The program explores the fossil of “Selam,” also known as “Lucy’s Child.” Nova‘s cameras are there to capture the unveiling of the face, spine and shoulder blades of this 3.3 million-year-old fossil child. Go “inside the skull” to see how our ancestors’ brains had begun to change from those of the apes.

In part two, “Birth of Humanity,” Nova investigates the first skeleton that really looks like us: “Turkana Boy,” an astonishingly complete specimen of Homo erectus found by the famous Leakey team in Kenya. These early humans are thought to have developed key innovations that helped them thrive, including hunting large prey, the use of fire and extensive social bonds.

And in part three, “Last Human Standing,” Nova examines the fate of the Neanderthals, our European cousins who died out as modern humans spread from Africa into Europe during the Ice Age. The program explores crucial evidence from the recent decoding of the Neanderthal genome.

“Becoming Human: Part One” airs tonight at 9/8 pm CT on KET; “Becoming Human: Part Two” airs tonight at 10/9 pm CT on KET; and “Becoming Human: Part 3” airs tonight at 11/10 pm CT on KET.

Albert Castiglia

Powerhouse electric and slide guitarist brings original tunes to the stage

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

On tonight’s episode of Jubilee—Summertime Blues, Albert Castiglia, a powerhouse electric and slide guitarist, brings original tunes and soulful vocals. The series was recorded at the 2010 W.C. Handy Blues & Barbecue Festival in Henderson, Kentucky.

Born in New York and raised in Miami, Castiglia’s musical history began at age 12, when he learned to play the guitar. After winning local awards for “Best Blues Guitarist” as part of The Miami Blues Authority, Castiglia’s big break came after meeting the legendary Junior Wells in 1996. He became Wells’ lead guitar player, performing at clubs and festivals throughout Europe and the United States.

During that time, he also got the opportunity to play and jam with many other blues stars, including Pinetop Perkins, Ronnie Earl, Billy Boy Arnold, Lurrie Bell, Jerry Portnoy, Eddy Clearwater and Otis Clay. After Wells passed away in 1998, Castiglia toured with Atlanta blues singer Sandra Hall.

Returning to South Florida to launch his solo career, Castiglia’s 2008 album These Are the Days received quite a bit of recognition. The album included the song “Godfather of the Blues,” a tribute to his mentor Wells. These Are the Days earned him a Blues Music Award nomination for “Song of the Year.” He also received nominations from the Illinois Blues Blast Awards for “Song of the Year” and the “Sean Costello Rising Star Award.”

This episode of Jubilee—Summertime Blues premieres Tuesday, August 30 at 10/9 pm CT on KET.

Pete Seeger

Learn how and why Seeger went from the top of the charts to the top of the blacklist

Monday, August 29, 2011

Watch the full episode. See more American Masters.

Largely misunderstood by his critics, including the U.S. government, for his views on peace, civil rights and ecology, folk singer and songwriter Pete Seeger went from the top of the hit parade to the top of the blacklist—banned from commercial television for more than 17 years.

Learn more about Seeger in an encore presentation of American Masters’ “Pete Seeger: The Power of Song.” Seeger wrote many of America’s best known folk songs, including “Where Have All The Flowers Gone,” “If I Had A Hammer,” “Turn Turn Turn” and “Wimoweh.”

Born in 1919 to music professors whose families traced their ancestry back to the Mayflower, Seeger attended Harvard for two years before leaving. In 1942, he was drafted into the Army, and before shipping out, Seeger married Toshi-Aline Ohta, the daughter of a Japanese exile of noble descent and an American woman from an old Virginia family.

Seeger’s long career earned him a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1993 and an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1996.

American Masters’ “The Power of Song” with Pete Seeger airs tonight at 9/8 pm CT on KET.

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