When Lee Stringer was homeless, he collected cans to support his crack habit. One day he picked up a pencil, started to write, and it changed his life. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, Lee Stringer and others who call the streets "home." Also, how a street musician named Mr. Satan became one young man's mentor.
Lee Stringer spent 11 years on the streets of New York. He tells Judith Strasser that he collected cans for cash and ate Amtrak's "clean garbage", while sleeping under a train platform. He started writing, and it changed his life. His book is "Grand Central Winter: Stories from the Street." Also, professional juggler and street performer Truly Remarkable Loon tells Jim Fleming how he catches and holds a crowd's attention, that there is a fellowship among street performers, and that you don't have to be young to be a street musician.SEGMENT 2:
David Isay talks with Judith Strasser about his radio pieces, made in collaboration with people whose voices are not usually heard in the media. He describes working with project kids on "Ghetto Life 101," and the characters he's met working at the Sunshine Hotel, a flophouse in New York City. Isay is an award winning radio documentarian whose work is heard regularly on National Public Radio stations. Also, novelist Rohinton Mistry tells Steve Paulson about the untouchable caste in his native Bombay and how many survive as street beggars. Mistry's latest book is "A Fine Balance."SEGMENT 3:
Adam Gussow is a harmonica player, doctoral student at Princeton, and the author of "Mr Satan's Apprentice" - a memoir of the time he spent making music with a 60+ Black wizard guitar player he met in Harlem. Gussow tells Steve Paulson a bit of Mr. Satan's history; how their musical collaboration worked; and how Mr. Satan became a kind of mentor for him. Their duo, Satan and Adam, released three CD's including "Down by the River."Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 99-02-07-C.
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