When a Minivan Is a Music Machine, and the Return of Chucky: The Week in Narrated Articles

This weekend, take heed to a assortment of narrated articles from round The New York Times, learn aloud by the reporters who wrote them.

If you reside in sure elements of New York, you may hear the sound of bachata, dembow and merengue típico infiltrate metropolis crevices on the weekends till the cops attempt to shut the music down. This is Dominican automotive audio tradition, the place custom-made sound techniques are an artwork of their very own.

At meets and reveals, Dominican automotive fans — generally known as musicólogos — are like D.J.s and stay engineers, deciding on songs and mixing ranges for max impact. Their vans are assembled in large circles and tricked out with towering rows of audio system. Swarms of spectators collect inside the rings, and musicólogos blast songs over their rivals, hoping to drown them out. Some desire a clear sound, whereas others go for quantity that makes your eyeballs vibrate out of their sockets.

This is a tradition born out of a love for sound, for group — a cradle of belonging in a nation that’s tough to name yours.

Written and narrated by Helene Stapinski

When Stephen Ulrich, a guitarist and composer, noticed a standup bass in a Jersey City pawnshop with the phrase “SMUTTY” written throughout the backside in pink letters, he instantly knew whose it was.

He recalled seeing that bass onstage on the Lower East Side in the early Nineteen Eighties, when a band referred to as the Rockats — and notably their bass participant, Smutty Smiff — modified his life, inspiring him to pursue a career in music. “He was larger than life and wasn’t like anybody else I’d ever seen,” Mr. Ulrich mentioned of Smutty. “He kind of rearranged my molecules.”

Wondering why Smutty would have hocked his massive, lovely bass, Mr. Ulrich posted a photograph of it on Facebook. First, he was hit by a whole bunch of feedback. Then, Mr. Ulrich’s cellphone rang. “Smutty Smiff here,” mentioned the voice on the different finish, in a thick Cockney accent. “I heard you found my bass.”

Written by Dana Goldstein and Jacey Fortin | Narrated by Dana Goldstein

A overwhelming majority of the nation’s 50 million public faculty college students have been in lecture rooms, full time and largely uninterrupted, this fall — whether or not college students are masked or unmasked, lecturers vaccinated or not.

Now faculties face the question of what comes subsequent. In conservative areas like Wyoming, some faculties need to work out learn how to encourage extra folks to get vaccinated. In elements of Georgia which have began requiring masks in faculties, there may be debate over how a lot it can assist. And in liberal districts like Boston, the place an infection charges are low, some mother and father are starting to question how lengthy masking might be mandatory.

These debates replicate a bigger societal question: How ought to we stay with Covid, because it seems to be right here to remain?

Written and narrated by Erik Piepenburg

For Don Mancini, the homosexual man who created Chucky, the foul-mouthed killer doll who first terrorized viewers in 1988, “Chucky” (premiering Tuesday on USA and Syfy) is extra than simply the franchise’s first foray into episodic tv. Its eight episodes pursue deeply personal themes that Mancini wasn’t in a position to discover when “Child’s Play” hit theaters 33 years in the past.

In the new present, Jake (Zackary Arthur), a 14-year-old boy who unknowingly purchases Chucky at a yard sale, is miffed that Chucky has learn his diary entries about his crush on a classmate. That’s when Chucky tells Jake about his personal queer and gender-fluid youngster.

Although tv is not any stranger to homosexual teenage characters in 2021, Mancini is aware of that Jake’s sexuality may rattle some horror followers. “But I’m in a position to do it, so why not?” Mancini mentioned. “The idea of causing some people’s heads to explode was catnip to me.”

Written and narrated by Korsha Wilson

Bryant Terry is a celebrated cookbook writer, however currently, he has been trying past the medium of meals to know how greatest to protect Black meals tales.

Mr. Terry is heading up a new imprint referred to as 4 Color Books, which is able to deliver two to 3 titles written by writers of coloration to market every year. The first, “Black Food,” might be launched on Oct. 19 and is an try to showcase the breadth of Black tradition round the world. It options a galaxy of Black voices sharing recipes, tales and paintings and analyzing their connection to meals, drink, spirituality, tradition, belonging, relaxation and self-care. It’s extra spiritually aligned with a gallery exhibit than a cookbook.

“I think the most impactful part of 4 Color will be modeling how we want the publishing world to be,” Mr. Terry mentioned. “The informal tagline is: 4 people of color, 4 coloring outside of the lines,” and, as a nod to Black ladies and Black tradition, “4c hair.”

The Times’s narrated articles are made by Parin Behrooz, Claudine Ebeid, Carson Leigh Brown, Anna Diamond, Aaron Esposito, Elena Hecht, Elisheba Ittoop, Emma Kehlbeck, Marion Lozano, Anna Martin, Tracy Mumford, Tanya Perez, Margaret Willison, Kate Winslett and John Woo. Special because of Sam Dolnick, Ryan Wegner, Julia Simon and Desiree Ibekwe.

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