Def Jam started paying for Rihanna's recent single, "Man Down," more than a year ago. In March of 2010, the label held a writing camp in L.A. to create the songs for Rihanna's album, Loud.
At a writing camp, a record label hires the best music writers in the country and drops them into the nicest recording studios in town for about two weeks. It's a temporary version of the old music-industry hit factories, where writers and producers cranked out pop songs.
The Japanese automaker Toyota has taken its fair share of hits in the past year and a half: The earthquake and tsunami in Japan as well as last year's recall fiasco have helped erode the company's share of the U.S. car market.
But one place Toyota remains No. 1 is with minority car buyers — Latinos, African-Americans and Asian-Americans continue to buy more Toyotas than any other car brand, domestic or foreign.
Toyota's claim on the minority market has the Rev. Jesse Jackson questioning other car companies' practices.
On March 11, 2011, Japan's northern coast was shaken by the biggest earthquake ever to strike the island in recorded history. With a gigantic tsunami and the nuclear meltdown that followed, 3/11 was the worst disaster to hit the developed world for a hundred years. Confronted with tough questions about its dependence on nuclear power, about the competence of its leaders both in the private and public sectors, about the economy's ability to rebound from a shock, the country has been plunged into crisis.
Wednesday, the White House has unveiled a new counterterrorism strategy that would focus more on drone strikes and special operations and less on large-scale ground conflicts. NPR spoke with two experts in national security — Sean Burke, a vice president and senior fellow for the Center for National Policy and Ken Gude, managing director of the National Security and International Policy Program of the Center for American Progress — to get their thoughts on the strategy.
Hatsune Miku is an anime girl with kiddie-pool sized eyes and flowing teal pigtails. She stars in a new Toyota Corolla commercial aimed at the Asian-American market.
Miku is huge back home in Japan. Originally invented to sell synthesized voice software, the character's featured in a video game, she's released hit pop songs and she sells out live concerts. (If "live" is the right word.)
After one trip to Africa, Clark County's Jennifer Watson knew she had to find a way to go back. A three-week trip to Kenya last summer has turned into a three-year teaching stint for the Hannah McClure Elementary School teacher. “Once I got back, I just loved the country, and I tried to figure out how to go back and support myself,” Watson said. Watson said that, since teaching is her career in America, it made sense that teaching also would be a way to live permanently in Africa. In January, she was accepted to teach for three years at Rosslin Academy, an international Christian school in Nairobi. However, Watson said she “wouldn’t be surprised” if her stint in Africa extended beyond the three years.
Eric Tipton of Morgantown breathed a sigh of relief Wednesday afternoon when Jim Elliott pulled his white Ford F-350 highway safety truck behind Tipton’s broken-down Nissan at mile marker 5 on the southbound William H. Natcher Parkway. Tipton wasn’t sure if his car had run out of gas or if he had a fuel line problem. Elliott grabbed one of his two gas cans out of the back of his truck and poured a half-gallon of gas into Tipton’s gas tank. The car didn’t start, but at least Tipton figured out the problem. “It’s a good feeling really,” Tipton said about Elliott showing up. “Just knowing if you’re out of fuel or need immediate help to know somebody is there for you.”