Joe Donahue

Vice President, News and Programming

Joe talks to people on the radio for a living. In addition to countless impressive human "gets" - he has talked to a lot of Muppets. Joe grew up in Philadelphia, has been on the area airwaves for more than 25 years and currently lives in Washington County, NY with his wife, Kelly, and their dog, Brady. And yes, he reads every single book. 

Ways to Connect

1/4/17 Panel

Jan 4, 2017

  The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao, and corporate attorney Rich Honen.

Bestselling author Wally Lamb’s latest, I’ll Take You There, tells the story of film professor Felix Funicello who is visited by the ghost of a trailblazing director from the silent era who invites Felix to revisit – and in some cases re-live – scenes from his past.  

  From the domestication of the bird nearly ten thousand years ago to its current status as our go-to meat, the history of this seemingly commonplace bird is anything but ordinary.

How did chicken achieve the culinary ubiquity it enjoys today? It’s hard to imagine, but there was a point in history, not terribly long ago, that individual people each consumed less than ten pounds of chicken per year. Today, those numbers are strikingly different: we consumer nearly twenty-five times as much chicken as our great-grandparents did.

Collectively, Americans devour 73.1 million pounds of chicken in a day, close to 8.6 billion birds per year. How did chicken rise from near-invisibility to being in seemingly "every pot," as per Herbert Hoover's famous promise?

Emelyn Rude explores this phenomenon in Tastes Like Chicken.

John Nixon, the former CIA analyst who conducted the first prolonged interrogation of Saddam Hussein after his capture by U.S. forces, speaks publicly for the first time about this historic episode in his new book: Debriefing the President: The Interrogation Of Saddam Hussein.

Nixon offers not only an intimate and personal portrait of the Iraqi dictator, but new revelations about what he learned from Saddam and in his subsequent briefings of President George W. Bush and top administration officials—including Vice President Dick Cheney, CIA Director George Tenet, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. 

Nixon also provides fresh, deeply informed perspectives on why U.S. policies in Iraq and the broader Middle East have failed so badly, and why the CIA and other parts of our intelligence establishment urgently require major reform. 

Tens of thousands of men and women have left comfortable, privileged lives to join the Islamic State and kill for it. To them, its violence is beautiful and holy, and the caliphate a fulfillment of prophecy and the only place on earth where they can live and die as Muslims.

The new book - The Way of the Strangers - is an intimate journey into the minds of the Islamic State’s true believers. From the streets of Cairo to the mosques of London, Journalist Graeme Wood interviews supporters, recruiters, and sympathizers of the group.

Through character study and analysis, Wood provides a look at a movement that has inspired so many people to abandon or uproot their families. Many seek death—and they will be the terror threat of the next decade, as they strike back against the countries fighting their caliphate.

Graeme Wood is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and he teaches in the political science department at Yale University. His new book is: The Way of the Strangers

1/3/17 Panel

Jan 3, 2017

    The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC's Alan Chartock, Associate Editor of the Times Union Mike Spain, and Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao.

When feminist writer Susan Faludi learned that her 76-year-old father ― long estranged and living in Hungary ― had undergone sex reassignment surgery, she was set on an investigation that would turn personal and urgent.

How was this new parent who identified as “a complete woman now” connected to the silent, explosive, and ultimately violent father she had known, the photographer who’d built his career on the alteration of images?

  From the beloved host and creator of NPR’s All Songs Considered and Tiny Desk Concerts comes an essential oral history of modern music, told in the voices of iconic and up-and-coming musicians, including Dave Grohl, Jimmy Page, Michael Stipe, Carrie Brownstein, Smokey Robinson, and Jeff Tweedy, among others—published in association with NPR Music.

Is there a unforgettable song that changed your life?

NPR’s renowned music authority Bob Boilen posed this question to some of today’s best-loved musical legends and rising stars.

In 1932, as her husband assumed the presidency, Eleanor Roosevelt entered the claustrophobic, duty-bound existence of the First Lady with dread. By that time, she had put her deep disappointment in her marriage behind her and developed an independent life—now threatened by the public role she would be forced to play. A lifeline came to her in the form of a feisty campaign reporter for the Associated Press: Lorena Hickok. Over the next thirty years, until Eleanor’s death, the two women carried on an extraordinary relationship: They were, at different points, lovers, confidantes, professional advisors, and caring friends.

Susan Quinn has written a book about their unique relationship entitled Eleanor and Hick: The Love Affair That Shaped a First Lady

Susan Quinn is the author of Furious Improvisation: How the WPA and a Cast of Thousands Made High Art Out of Desperate Times and Marie Curie: A Life, among other books. Her work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic, and other publications. She is the former president of PEN New England.

12/30/16 Panel

Dec 30, 2016

 

The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao, Author and Activist Barbara Smith.

Shawn Stone, Digital Editor of The Alt joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Seen: La La Land

Upcoming:

  • Hayes Carll, Allison Moorer - Helsinki Hudson, Hudson, Thursday, 12/29, 8 PM
  • Trading Places - Madison Theater, Albany, Thursday-Saturday, 12/29-31, various times
  • theNEWDEAL, Leila - Putnam Den, Saratoga Springs, Friday, 12/30, 8 PM
  • Songs To Amuse: Byron Nilsson & Malcolm Kogut - Steamer No. 10 Theatre, Albany, Saturday, 12/31, 7 PM
  • Twiddle - Palace Theatre, Albany, Saturday, 12/31, 7:30 PM
  • First Night of Funny: Steve Caouette, Kelly McFarland, Joe Bronzi, Jaye McBride - The Egg, Albany, Saturday, 12/31, 7:30 (clean) and 8 PM (blue)
  • Roxxi Tart’s New Year’s Eve 1920s Speakeasy Burlesque Revue - North Albany Studios (448 N Pearl), Albany, Saturday, 12/31, 9 PM
  • Berkshire Bach Ensemble: Complete Brandenburg Concerti - Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Troy, Sunday, 1/1, 3 PM

Favorite (not top 10) films seen in 2016:
Arrival
A Bigger Splash
The Bronze
Christine
Florence Foster Jenkins
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Miles Ahead
The Nice Guys
Pete’s Dragon

12/29/16 Panel

Dec 29, 2016

      The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC's Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao, and political consultant and lobbyist, Libby Post.

  On April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold walked into Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Over the course of minutes, they would kill twelve students and a teacher and wound twenty-four others before taking their own lives.

For the last sixteen years, Sue Klebold, Dylan’s mother, has lived with the indescribable grief and shame of that day. How could her child, the promising young man she had loved and raised, be responsible for such horror? And how, as his mother, had she not known something was wrong? Were there subtle signs she had missed? What, if anything, could she have done differently?

These are questions that Klebold has grappled with every day since the Columbine tragedy. In A Mother’s Reckoning, she chronicles with unflinching honesty her journey as a mother trying to come to terms with the incomprehensible.

Saratoga Arts Presents First Night 2017: A Night of Magic! on  Saturday, December 31st 2016: 6pm to midnight.

As one of the oldest and largest First Night celebrations in the country, First Night presents over seventy regional and touring performing groups in thirty venues throughout Historic Downtown Saratoga Springs. 

Starting with the 5k roadrace at Skidmore College at 5:30pm, culminating with the fireworks in Congress Park at midnight and packed full of live music, dance, and comedy. 

Here to tell us more Alix Jones, Director of First Night Saratoga with Saratoga Arts and First Night headliners SIRSY, the rock and soul duo made up for Melanie Krahmer and Rich Libutti.

12/28/16 Panel

Dec 28, 2016

  The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao and Communications Specialist Theresa Bourgeois.

  Annie Proulx is the author of ten books, including the novel, The Shipping News and the short story, Brokeback Mountain.

Her new novel, Barkskins, imagines the forging of a new world through humanity’s insatiable appetite for timber and through two families intertwined in the early onslaught of modern global deforestation.

Rob Burnett
BAFTA/David Beyda

  Rob Burnett spent 30 years working for David Letterman, rising from intern to executive producer, before directing Paul Rudd and Selena Gomez in the new Netflix release The Fundamentals of Caring.

Rob Burnett joins us this morning to talk about the film, his life at Letterman’s side and other adventures in television.

Elizabeth Lesser, cofounder of Omega Institute and the Omega Women's Leadership Center, is author of The Seeker's Guide and Broken Open.

Her new memoir is Marrow, a visceral and profound memoir of two sisters who, in the face of a bone marrow transplant—one the donor and one the recipient—begin a quest for acceptance, authenticity, and most of all, love.

    James Conrad from The Golden Notebook in Woodstock, NY joins us with this week's Book Picks.

List:
How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS by David France
When We Rise: My Life in the Movement by Cleve Jones
Finishing School: The Happy Ending to That Writing Project You Can't Seem to Get Done by Cary Tennis and Danelle Morton
Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love by Brad Gooch
Victoria the Queen by Julia Baird
Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang
Do Not Say We Have Nothing by Madeleine Thein

12/27/16 Panel

Dec 27, 2016

  The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC's Alan Chartock, Associate Editor of the Times Union Mike Spain, and Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao.

  Jeanne Sauvage is a blogger, baker, and author who lives with her husband and daughter in Seattle, Washington.

She has two baking books to check out, Gluten-Free Baking for the Holidays: 60 Recipes for Traditional Festive Treatsand her new book Gluten-Free Wish List: Sweet and Savory Treats You've Missed the Most.

Matt Haig is a British author for children and adults. His memoir Reasons to Stay Alive was a number one bestseller, staying in the British top ten for 46 weeks. His children's book A Boy Called Christmas was a runaway hit in his own country and is translated in over 25 languages.

We also speak with him about Reasons to Stay Alive - his memoir about how he came through crisis, triumphed over an illness that almost destroyed him and learned to live again. 

  On a hot summer day some twenty years after he was famously converted to kindness, Ebenezer Scrooge still roams the streets of London, spreading Christmas cheer, much to the annoyance of his creditors, nephew, and his employee Bob Cratchit. However, when Scrooge decides to help his old friend and former partner Jacob Marley, as well as other inhabitants of the city, he will need the assistance of the very people he’s annoyed. He’ll also have to call on the three ghosts that visited him two decades earlier. By the time they’re done, they’ve convinced everyone to celebrate Christmas all year long by opening their wallets, arms, and hearts to those around them.

Written in uncannily Dickensian prose, Charlie Lovett’s The Further Adventures of Ebenezer Scrooge is both a loving and winking tribute to the Victorian classic, perfect for readers of A Christmas Carol and other timeless holiday tales.

Shawn Stone, Digital Editor of The Alt joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Seen: Passengers

Upcoming:

·         Cliff Brucker and Full Circle featuring Leo Russo - The Van Dyck, Schenectady, 12/22, Thu, 7 PM

·         North By Northwest, Dial “M” for Murder - Time + Space Limited, Hudson, 12/22-23, Thu-Fri, 6 PM (North), 8:15 PM (Dial)

·         Richie Redding - Funny Bone Comedy Club, Albany, 12/22, Thu at 7:30 PM; 12/23, Fri at 10 PM

·         Frosty the Snowman & Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Madison Theater, Albany, 12/22-24, Thu-Sat, various times

·         Spontaneous Broadway - MOPCO (Mop and Bucket Company), Schenectady, 12/23, 8 PM

·         It’s a Wonderful Life - Palace Theatre, Albany, 12/23, Fri, 7 PM

·         Racquette River Rounders’ Annual Boxing Day Concert - Caffe Lena at the Parting Glass Pub, Saratoga Springs, 12/26, Mon, 7 PM

·         The Jungle Book - Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, Great Barrington, 12/27, Tue, 4 PM

New movies: Lion, La La Land, Fences, Why Him?

12/22/16 Panel

Dec 22, 2016

     The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao and Communications Specialist Theresa Bourgeois.

Kenneth Clark's thirteen-part 1969 television series, Civilisation, established him as a globally admired figure. Clark was prescient in making this series: the upheavals of the century, the Cold War among others, convinced him of the power of barbarism and the fragility of culture. He would burnish his image with two memoirs that artfully omitted the more complicated details of his life.

Now, drawing on a vast, previously unseen archive, James Stourton reveals the formidable intellect and the private man behind the figure who effortlessly dominated the art world for more than half a century: his privileged upbringing, his interest in art history beginning at Oxford, his remarkable early successes.

At 27 he was keeper of Western Art at the Ashmolean in Oxford and at 29, the youngest director of The National Gallery. During the war he arranged for its entire collection to be hidden in slate mines in Wales and organized packed concerts of classical music at the Gallery to keep up the spirits of Londoners during the bombing. WWII helped shape his belief that art should be brought to the widest audience, a social and moral position that would inform the rest of his career.

In the spring of 1942, the United States rounded up 120,000 residents of Japanese ancestry living along the West Coast and sent them to interment camps for the duration of World War II. Many abandoned their land. Many gave up their personal property. Each one of them lost a part of their lives.

Amazingly, the government hired famed photographers Dorothea Lange, Ansel Adams, and others to document the expulsion--from assembling Japanese Americans at racetracks to confining them in ten camps spread across the country. Their photographs, exactly seventy-five years after the evacuation began, give an emotional, unflinching portrait of a nation concerned more about security than human rights. These photographs are more important than ever.

Fannie Flagg is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café and A Redbird Christmas.

Her latest novel, The Whole Town’s Talking, tells the story of Lordor Nordstrom, his Swedish mail-order bride and their neighbors and descendants as they live, love, die and carry on in mysterious and surprising ways.

A Life In Ornaments

Dec 20, 2016
Elf Christmas ornament
Bob Eisenhardt

First highlighted in the New York Times, Bonnie Mackay’s annual Christmas tree showcases a lifetime collecting almost 3,000 ornaments. 

Now, through beautiful photography and illuminating vignettes, Tree of Treasures shares the heartfelt stories behind a hundred of those cherished possessions, whether it’s the story of a family member, like Mackay’s grandfather, a well-known vaudeville performer; long-held relationships with friends and colleagues in the international community of Christmas crafts makers; a memory of a beloved pet; and much more. 

Our tech guru Jesse Feiler joins us this morning to discuss the ins and outs of writing code. Is it as difficult as it sounds?

Jesse Feiler helps people and organizations get to know and use new technologies. His most recent books are “Learn Apple HomeKit on iOS” and “iPad for Seniors for Dummies.”

Current projects include Utility Smart to manage use of utility resources (with Curt Gervich at SUNY Plattsburgh Risk Management for Nonprofits).

Visit the Congressional App Challenge website.

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