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Connections

Weekdays Noon-2:00 p.m. on WXXI-AM 1370 or WRUR-FM 88.5 in Rochester and WEOS 89.5 FM in Geneva

Evan Dawson talks about what matters to you on ConnectionsEvery weekday from Noon-2 p.m. Be part of the program with questions or comments by phone - 1-844-295-TALK (8255), email, Facebook or Twitter

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Ways to Connect

Congress is debating a new tax plan that would bring changes for many American families. So how does it work? Who would benefit, and who would pay more? Our guests:

J. SCOTT APPLEWHITE / AP

First hour: Discussing the GOP's new tax plan

Second hour: What hospitals can learn from the airline industry

In modern media, success usually means following up with the same thing that brought success. Music, television -- think about why the characters on Friends only became caricatures of themselves. But 25 years ago, a band went against the popular grain.

R.E.M. had found massive commercial success with their 1991 hits like "Stand" and "Shiny Happy People." Suddenly, just as popular as Madonna, the band had a chance to fire off more and similar hits. But their 1992 album, Automatic for the People, is one of the darker pop albums of the era. Songs about suicide prevention and tragedy were not exactly what the producers were hoping for, but the band stayed with their vision. Is there a lesson there? We examine with our guests:

What truly makes someone happy? SUNY Geneseo psychology professor Jim Allen collected the data and produced a new book called The Psychology of Happiness in the Modern World.

We discuss the impacts of economic systems, income inequality, and more.

First hour: The psychology of happiness

Second hour: 25 years of R.E.M.'s Automatic for the People

Weekend Connections is a collection of some of the most noteworthy moments from the week on Connections with Evan Dawson. This episode includes conversations about:

  • Retired Army Captain Sam Brown's remarkable story of survival after serving in Afghanistan;
  • What happens when big plants close in small and medium-sized cities;
  • The U.S. State Department under the Trump administration, with former State Department employee and thriller writer Todd Moss;
  • Songwriting, with performers from If All Rochester Wrote the Same Song.

What would it sound like if a number of local musicians all wrote their own versions of a song with the same title? Music fans will be able to hear more than 20 original takes on the title "How Did We Get Here" during a special concert next week at Hochstein Performance Hall. It's part of an event appropriately titled, "If All Rochester Wrote the Same Song."

We preview some of those versions and talk about the song writing process with our guests. In studio:

Most school rankings lean heavily on academic performance, but what if test scores were taken out of the equation? The Democrat & Chronicle's Justin Murphy did exactly that, and his recent piece offers a new way to look at school rankings. So who's on top? And how were the rankings done? Our guests will tell us. In studio:

  • Justin Murphy, education reporter for the Democrat & Chronicle
  • Joanne Larson, professor of education and associate director of research for the Center for Urban Education Success at the University of Rochester
  • John Gonzalez, Jr., principal of Francis Parker School No. 23

www.rcsdk12.org

First hour: A new look at local school rankings

Second hour: If All Rochester Wrote the Same Song

U.S. Amy captain Sam Brown is in Rochester to share his story of recovery and resilience. While responding to an ambushed patrol in Afghanistan in 2008, he was set on fire when his vehicle drove over a bomb. He now uses his experience to helped wounded soldiers and returning veterans.

Captain Brown is a guest of CDS Life Transitions for its “Salute: A Toast to Our Veterans," event, but first, he joins us in studio to share his remarkable survival story. Our guests:

  • Captain Sam Brown, U.S. Army (retired)
  • Sankar Sewnauth, president and CEO of CDS Life Transitions
  • Wendy Dettmer, Warrior Salute program manager at CDS Life Transitions

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