Welcome to AMERICAN MOSAIC in VOA Special English.
I'm Doug Johnson.
today's program, we tell about Los Angeles Lakers basketball coach Phil Jackson …
Answer a question about folk
singer John Denver …
And hear music by Madeleine
The National Basketball Association recently chose new
players to join its teams. These new
professional athletes are training to win basketball games and championships.
Their coaches are working to design winning plays and powerful teams. One coach recently was recognized as the most
successful at doing this. Barbara Klein
has more about Los Angeles Lakers head coach Phil Jackson and his recent
June fourteenth, the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Orlando Magic to win the
National Basketball Association championship. But
that was not the only major victory that night.
Basketball fans cheered Lakers head coach Phil Jackson
as he became the only head coach in NBA history to win ten national
championships. NBA coach Red Auerbach of
the Boston Celtics had held the record with nine championship victories. Auerbach died in two thousand six.
Jackson is known for his easy style of coaching. This is a result of spiritual influences he
learned from his parents who were religious workers. His supporters say his calm style shows he
trusts his players to perform well by learning from their mistakes.
But others have criticized Jackson for calmly
sitting during games instead of showing great emotion. Other coaches walk along the sidelines and
shout at the players. Critics say
Jackson's success is not a result of his coaching skills as much as having
superstar athletes on his teams.
many people argue that his talent should be recognized because ten national
coaching victories do not happen by accident.
Jackson has coached the Lakers for ten years and has led the team to four
national championships. He has coached
some of the NBA's best basketball players, including Kobe Bryant and Shaquille
Earlier in his career, he won six
championships as coach of the Chicago Bulls. That team included Michael Jordan, who is said to be the best basketball
player of all time.
sixty-three year old coach has had operations to replace both of his hips and
has problems with his back and knees. But last week, Phil Jackson announced
that he will return to coach the Lakers next season.
Our listener question this week comes from a college
student in China. Liu Hualong wants to know about the American musician and
singer John Denver. Denver was one of the most popular musical artists during
the nineteen seventies. He was known for his songs about the beauty of nature.
He was also a human rights and environmental activist.
He was born
Henry John Deutschendorf, Junior in nineteen-forty three in Roswell, New
Mexico. John's grandmother gave him his
first musical instrument when he was seven years old. When he began performing, he changed his last
name to Denver, after the capital of his favorite state, Colorado.
In nineteen sixty-five, John Denver joined the band
called the Chad Mitchell Trio. He later left the group to perform alone. His
first hit record was "Take Me Home, Country Roads" in nineteen seventy-one.
He had a very successful career with hit songs like
"Sunshine on my Shoulders", "Annie's Song" and "Thank God I'm a Country
Boy." This song, "Rocky Mountain High,"
is one of the official songs of Colorado.
John Denver sold more than one hundred million albums
around the world. He received many music
industry awards. He used his popularity to support environmental causes. He started an environmental education and
nineteen-ninety seven, John Denver was killed when the plane he was piloting
crashed. A memorial sign where his plane
crashed contains lines from his song "Windsong": "So welcome the wind and the
wisdom she offers. Follow her summons when she calls again."
Madeleine Peyroux is known for her soft and dreamy
voice which she made famous with her hit album, "Careless Love," in two
thousand four. On her latest album, "Bare Bones," the thirty-four year old
performer continues to combine the sounds of jazz, folk music and the blues.
But on this album, Peyroux does not sing songs made famous by other artists.
She helped write all eleven songs on the album. Faith Lapidus has more.
was "Instead," a song that takes listeners back in time. Madeleine Peyroux's
voice is most often compared to Billie Holiday.
has said that the great blues singers Billie Holiday and Bessie Smith still
help shape her identity.
Peyroux first began performing popular jazz and blues
songs as a teenager in the streets of Paris, France. She has said that writing the songs on "Bare Bones" was a very
new experience, almost like making her first album over again.
Her aim in
writing is to keep each song as clear and simple as possible while also telling
a story. Madeleine Peyroux says making this record felt good, like opening a
shade into sunlight in the morning. Here is the poetic song "Love and
leave you with a song Madeleine Peyroux wrote by herself. She wrote "I Must Be
Saved" to honor the folk singer Odetta whom Peyroux calls her spiritual
grandmother. Peyroux says the song shows that a person might have troubles, but
it is always possible to survive and carry on.
I'm Doug Johnson. I hope you enjoyed our program today.
It was written by Lawan Davis, Marisel Salazar and Dana
Demange who was also the producer. For
transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our programs, go to
voaspecialenglish.com. You can also
write comments about our programs.
you have a question about American people, places or things? Send your questions about American life to
email@example.com. Or write to American
Mosaic, VOA Special English, Washington, D.C., two-zero-two-three-seven, U.S.A.
Please include your full name and where you live.
us again next week for AMERICAN
MOSAIC, VOA's radio magazine in Special English.