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Listeners Jam To Ofeibea Quist-Arcton's Playlist


And now it's time for Backtalk. That's when we lift the curtain on what's happening in the TELL ME MORE blogosphere. Editor Ammad Omar is here with us, and it's kind of nice to see you on this side. I'm going to be asking you questions.

Ammad, what do you have for us today?

AMMAD OMAR, BYLINE: All right, Viviana. We've been covering some of the new immigration laws that have been passed around the country, and a lot of them are going through court challenges, like laws in Georgia and Alabama. Well, this week, a federal appeals court in Atlanta issued a mixed ruling on those states' laws. The court upheld this controversial policy that some call the show me your papers provision that allows police to check the immigration status of suspects that they think might be in the country illegally.

HURTADO: That syncs with the recent Supreme Court ruling on Arizona's immigration law. But Ammad, we should note that the courts aren't ruling out future challenges to that provision once it goes into effect.

OMAR: Absolutely. The appeals court also did strike down other parts of the Alabama and Georgia laws, though. For example, it said Alabama schools can't be required to collect information about students' immigration status because that would discourage kids from going to class. And it said Alabama can't ask immigrants to carry registration documents at all times. But there's still plenty of legal wrangling left in both of those cases, so we'll keep you posted.

HURTADO: And that's not just it. What other updates do you have for us, Ammad?

OMAR: All right. We've talked a little bit on this program about the financial struggles of Morris Brown College in Atlanta. That's a historically black college founded in the late 1800s. While creditors are calling in $13 million worth of bonds, but Morris Brown says it doesn't have the money right now, so the college is facing foreclosure in September.

HURTADO: OK. Well, we're going to definitely keep an eye on that. What else?

OMAR: All right. Something a little bit lighter now. We have this occasional series called In Your Ear. That's where we ask guests about what kind of music they're listening to. Well, we recently had Africa correspondent Ofeibea Quist-Arcton on the program, and her segment got a lot of listeners asking about the songs she picked. Diada LaShawn(ph) from Kimberton, Pennsylvania wanted to know more about the second song on her list, so we'll let Ofeibea tell us more about it.

OFEIBEA QUIST-ARCTON, BYLINE: My favorite singer of all times is Miriam Makeba, because she had a singular, distinctive voice. May she rest in peace. "Laku tshoni'langa" talks about - is it the sunrise or the sunset? But it such a lyrical, beautiful, calming lullaby. Whenever my nerves are frayed, this is what calms me down.


MIRIAM MAKEBA: (Singing in foreign language)

OMAR: And if that's too slow for you, we also got a letter from Aiden Stafford(ph) from Hamtramck, Michigan asking about the last song on Ofeibea's list, and he wanted to know how to spell it, as well. Well, it's Yolele. That's Y-O-L-E-L-E, by Papa Wemba.

QUIST-ARCTON: It was when he kind of changed gear and just came out with this revolutionary album called "Emotion." When he comes out with the bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, that beat just sets me off, and then I start dancing and I start singing along with the Congolese, Papa Wemba.


PAPA WEMBA: (Singing in foreign language)

HURTADO: And I'm tapping my feet and dancing. Remember, with TELL ME MORE, the conversation never ends. To tell us more, you can call our comment line at 202-842-3522, or go online at npr.org/TellMeMore. Please remember to leave us your name. We're on Twitter. Just look for TellMeMoreNPR. Thank you, Ammad.

OMAR: Thank you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.