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Winners or not, the 89th Academy Awards already looks more diverse than seasons past.

After two straight years of picking nominations that lacked any people of color in an acting category, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences seems to have turned the tide some this year. The Academy has upped the diversity of its membership in response to last year's protests — and it shows.

Seven Fun Facts About 'Arab Idol'

2 hours ago

The Arab world has crowned a winner.

10:30 pm: The Jungle Book takes the Oscar for best visual effects. The Pop Culture Happy Hour crew thinks this category was stacked, so this is a deserved win.

10:28 pm: And now... A SALUTE TO THE MOVIES!!!

10:20 pm: Two things can be equally true. 1. These tour bus people are cute. 2. This bit has been going on since the Industrial Revolution.

Jonathan Rado and Sam France were in eighth grade when they first met and began making music together. Their tastes were simple at first — straight-ahead rock songs banged out on drums and guitars in a garage. But a dramatic shift happened when they decided to take a less linear approach to recording their work.

"I got really into buying cheap, cheap instruments on eBay — lots of xylophones and melodicas and kind of useless junk — and that was kind of everywhere," Rado says. "We'd just kind of play for like 30 minutes, and then chop the best bits down to a three-minute song."

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The Indonesian island of Java has long been synonymous with coffee. But it's only in the past decade or so that Indonesians have begun to wake up and smell the coffee — their own, that is.

Big changes are brewing in the country's coffee industry, as demand from a rising middle class fuels entrepreneurship and connoisseurship.

The trend is clear at places like the Anomali Coffee shop in South Jakarta. It roasts its coffee just inside the entrance on the ground floor.

Updated at 12:38 p.m. ET

Bill Paxton, prolific actor and big-screen fixture for decades, has died at the age of 61. In a statement released to media outlets Sunday, a family representative says Paxton died of complications from surgery.

"A loving husband and father, Bill began his career in Hollywood working on films in the art department and went on to have an illustrious career spanning four decades as a beloved and prolific actor and filmmaker," the statement reads.

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ANGIE THOMAS: (Reading) When I was 12, my parents had two talks with me. One was the usual birds and the bees. The other talk was about what to do if a cop stopped me.

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(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GIVE ME A REASON")

IBIBIO SOUND MACHINE: (Singing in Ibibio).

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On-air challenge: I'm going to give you three 5-letter words. You tell me a 5-letter word that can precede each of mine to complete a compound word or a familiar two-word phrase.

Ex. DRAFT HOUSE RIDER --> Rough (rough draft, rough-house, Rough Rider)

1. GLASS SLIDE MELON
2. TIGER TRAIL TOWEL
3. COUNT DONOR SPORT
4. SENSE POWER LAUGH
5. GIANT PEACE THUMB
6. SHIFT SHIRT STAND
7. SALAD PUNCH FLIES
8. TEASE POKER STEAK
9. STORY ORDER RANGE
10. SAUCE CIDER STORE
11. BLANK GUARD TAKEN

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Hollywood has been speaking out this week about the current political climate. There were teach-ins and rallies at talent agencies, and events and awards shows have been peppered with political opposition. NPR's arts correspondent Mandalit del Barco reports.

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Bill Evans was a genius: The jazz world, which can be roiled by factions and jealousies, usually agrees on that. He was a composer and pianist with a light, lyrical touch that was once described as what you might hear at the gates of heaven. But like many geniuses, Evans died too young — in 1980, at the age of just 51, after years of heavy drinking, cocaine, and heroin addiction.

A new documentary by filmmaker Bruce Spiegel helps capture that genius with interviews of musicians, family members, and archival footage of Bill Evans himself.

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Listening to Curtis McMurtry's new album can make you feel like you're overhearing an intimate conversation that maybe you shouldn't.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "WRONG INFLECTION")

The Academy Awards are Sunday night. But that's just what we call a peg for what I really want to talk about.

This spring marks the 45th anniversary of The Godfather.

"Leave the gun. Take the cannoli."

Francis Coppola's film is smartly scripted, beautifully acted and gorgeously directed. It's one of those special films you can see every few years and notice something new each time. It's an opera, really, where the arias are story lines about love, blood and America.

AP Photo

This years marks the 150th anniversary of the oldest Jewish congregation in Atlanta – the Temple, which was founded in 1867. The congregation was made up largely of well-to-do Atlantans – businessmen and their families who were well respected by many in the much larger Christian community.

First, know that Yiyun Li is not exactly a comforting author. Those who have read her fiction may recognize her tone: calm, but not soothing, matter-of-fact, yet dreamlike; a voice dedicated to seeing the world clearly and without sentimentality. Across two collections of short stories and two novels, this voice is both chilly and elegant, like a 19th-century Russian novelist, or a snowfall. Paired with Li's legion of characters — often near-biblically afflicted with a deep powerlessness — the overall effect can leave you with a mix of wonder, awe, and pain.

In the 1950s and '60s, if there were any children's books in a house, at least one of them was likely to be a Little Golden Book. With their golden spines and brightly colored pictures, they begged to be grabbed off a shelf by a curious child — which is exactly what their creators intended. Those beloved books celebrate their 75th birthday this year.

First introduced shortly after the start of World War II, many of them — such as The Tawny Scrawny Lion, The Saggy Baggy Elephant, and The Poky Little Puppy — have become classics.

When Anna Taylor got her U.S. patent for false eyelashes in 1911, it's doubtful she could see far enough into the future to know that trying to make lashes look longer and fuller would turn into a multimillion-dollar industry.

The White House on Friday barred reporters from numerous major media outlets from participating in a regularly scheduled press briefing, triggering charges of retaliation from news executives.

Doug Wamble On Piano Jazz

Feb 24, 2017

Guitarist, vocalist and songwriter Doug Wamble grew up listening to the Southern gospel, country and blues traditions of his Tennessee home.

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