As a founding member of The Beach Boys, Mike Love has spent an extraordinary fifty-five years, and counting, as the group's lead singer and one of its principal lyricists.

The Beach Boys, from their California roots to their international fame, are a unique American story -- one of overnight success and age-defying longevity; of musical genius and reckless self-destruction; of spirituality, betrayal, and forgiveness -- and Love is the only band member to be part of it each and every step.

Love’s story has never been fully told, of how a sheet-metal apprentice became the quintessential front man for America's most successful rock band, singing in more than 5,600 concerts in 26 countries. He writes about it all in his new memoir: Good Vibrations: My Life as a Beach Boy. 

The Malibu coast on the pacific coast highway that traces at our American icons, Malibu’s sparkling blue waters and striking cliffs have attracted Hollywood stars and carefree surfers alike with the promise of sun drenched days and endless summers. But few people know the story of how Malibu came to be established as a California paradise. In the new book The King and Queen of Malibu: The True Battle for Paradise, reporter and bestselling author David Randall Uncovers a tale of money, power, deceit, desperation and ultimately the modernization of the golden state itself. 

  Eternity Street tells the story of a violent place in a violent time: the rise of Los Angeles from its origins as a small Mexican pueblo. In his narrative, John Mack Faragher relates a dramatic history of conquest and ethnic suppression, of collective disorder and interpersonal conflict. Eternity Street recounts the struggle to achieve justice amid the turmoil of a loosely governed frontier, and it delivers a piercing look at the birth of this quintessentially American city. 

John Mack Faragher is the Howard R. Lamar Professor of History and American Studies at Yale University. He is the author of many books on the American frontier, including Daniel Boone: The Life and Legend of an American Pioneer, which received a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and, most recently, A Great and Noble Scheme.

4/6/15 Panel

Apr 6, 2015

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

Today's panelists are WAMC's Alan Chartock, SUNY Albany Journalism Professor and Investigative Professor, Rosemary Armao, and political consultant, Libby Post.

Scheduled topics include Rolling Stone retracts rape story; President Obama makes his case for Iran Nuclear Deal; Chinese women's rights activists arrested; and California drought.

1/29/15 Panel

Jan 29, 2015

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

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, University at Albany Journalism Professor and Investigative Reporter, Rosemary Armao, and WAMC Newsman, Ray Graf.

Topics include an update on Sheldon Silver, California school bans students without vaccinations, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's scheduled speech to the U.S. Congress, Attorney general nominee Loretta E. Lynch, and Biofuels.

    California now has more trees than at any time since the late Pleistocene. This green landscape, however, is not the work of nature. It’s the work of history.

Jared Farmer's book, Trees in Paradise offers an insightful, new perspective on the history of the Golden State and the American West.

Jared Farmer, a Utah native and former Californian, is the author of On Zion’s Mount, a landscape history awarded the prestigious Parkman Prize for literary excellence. He teaches history at Stony Brook University and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

    An innovative landmark a quarter century in the making, the new eastern span of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge represents the latest spectacular chapter in the history of this storied structure.

The new bridge's architect, Donald MacDonald, joins us to talk about the bridge and the book, Bay Bridge: History and Design of a New Icon. With friendly text and charming illustrations, Bay Bridge reveals the design decisions that have shaped the evolution of the bridge over the last century—from the history of the original bridge, through the planning of the new span, to the construction of its signature 525-foot-high white tower.