Arts and Culture

Living History: A Freedom Rider Shares His Story

The “Freedom Riders” were civil rights activists, black and white, who challenged segregation by riding buses across the South. In 1961 near Anniston, a mob slashed one of those buses’ tires, set it on fire, and beat some of the passengers. Freedom Rider Hank Thomas was one of them.

The Green Book and the Black-Jewish Relationship During Segregation

The Green Book has been described as the Bible for black travelers in the mid-20th century. It featured black-friendly businesses like motels and restaurants where travelers could rest on long road trips. The book’s publisher actually took the idea from a similar book used by Jews.

She Brought Water to the Freedom Riders: “I Couldn’t Let It Pass”

There’s a new national monument to the “Freedom Riders, the civil rights activists – black and white – who challenged segregation by riding buses across the South. In 1961, a mob set one of those buses on fire and beat some of the riders. But there’s a lesser-known wrinkle to the story: a little white girl, whose family feared the Ku Klux Klan, brought water to the injured passengers.

Black History Month Specials on WBHM

In honor of Black History Month, WBHM presents four documentaries highlighting America’s racial past and the long, dramatic struggle for civil rights.  Also, jazz with significant commentary on the African-American struggle, and a special themed Arc Stories featuring stories about growing up during the Civil Rights movement in Birmingham Say it Loud: Great Speeches on […]

Alabama Symphony Orchestra: Carlos Conducts Copland

WBHM's Michael Krall talks with Carlos Izcaray about this weekend's upcoming Masterworks concert.

Noise Music and Birmingham’s Growing Local Music Scene

When it comes to live, local music, Birmingham is still in it's infancy. From The Spring Street Firehouse, Saturn and WorkPlay have emerged as creative spaces where the city's many talented, local artists can perform and make a name for themselves.


Arc Stories: January 2017 Edition

Arc Stories features live storytelling from right here in Birmingham. No notes, no outlines. Just great storytellers sharing great, true stories. Sometimes funny, sometimes moving, and always engaging.

New National Monument Connects Birmingham’s Past to Today

President Obama establishes the Birmingham Civil Rights National Monument place many notable civil rights sites under the banner of the National Park Service.

Magical Things Happen Here….

Musician Kevin Kozak of Homewood…

The Power of Music…

Dementia Care Coordinator Pam Leonard of Alabaster…

Talladega Band Looks to Crowdfunding to Help Pay for Inauguration Trip

The 200-member band wants to raise $75,000 to help pay for transportation, lodging and other expenses. A total of $6,625 has been raised through 110 contributions, since the campaign launched five days ago.

Musician James Mullis: An Old Soul with a Millennial’s Heart

Birmingham musician James Mullis offers his unique blend of blues, folk and Americana.

Talladega College President Undecided On Band’s Inauguration Performance

Talladega College doesn’t have a football team, but it has a band – the Marching Tornadoes. More than 100 band members from the historically black college east of Birmingham have been invited to perform in President-elect Donald Trump’s inaugural parade. The college president is undecided on whether the band will perform, a college spokesman said. Talladega […]

Meet the Host of 1A: Joshua Johnson

Meet Joshua Johnson, the host of 1A -- a new program which will succeed The Diane Rehm Show.

Arc Stories: Holiday Edition 2016

Arc Stories features live storytelling from right here in Birmingham. No notes, no outlines. Just great storytellers sharing great, true stories. Sometimes funny, sometimes moving, and always engaging.

The Queer Library: A New Home for LGBT Literature

The brainchild of Change Project founder Steven Romeo, every book is written by an LGBT author or contains LGBT content.

Historic Marker Commemorates Gadsden Lynching

Tuesday, a historic marker will go up in Gadsden, Alabama, commemorating the 1906 lynching of a black man, Bunk Richardson, by a white mob.

The Junction: The Parsonage Bombing

Ensley residents who remember that tragic event and the role the community played in the civil rights movement say this rich history is important today as Ensley looks toward revitalization.

New “Nutritional Labels” For Trails Go Up At Oak Mountain

Hikers and runners who use trails at Oak Mountain State Park south of Birmingham have a new tool to help guide their outdoor fun. They’re trail signs, but they’re more than simple markers.

“What’s Lost is Found” — Photographs of Hale County

For decades, photographers have captured Hale County in Alabama’s Black Belt. Photojournalist Walker Evans documented families there suffering from the Great Depression. Starting in the 1960s, Alabama-native William Christenberry took pictures of decaying buildings. Now photographer Lauren Henkin can add her work to the tradition. Last year, Henkin spent a month in Hale County as an artist-in-residence sponsored by the Do Good Fund, which supports photography of the South. Some of those pictures will be displayed in an exhibit called “What’s Lost is Found.” It opens Friday at the Birmingham Museum of Art where she’ll also talk about the project. Henkin spoke with WBHM’s Andrew Yeager.

Yes, Cat Yoga Is A Thing Now, And It’s Pretty Purrfect

The Greater Birmingham Humane Shelter in Alabama hosts yoga sessions — for people — right alongside the shelter's cats.

Big Push to Make AL Civil Rights Monuments National Parks

A big push is underway to designate several Alabama civil rights locations as national parks. National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis, Congresswoman Terri Sewell and Mayor William Bell joined Jewell for a tour of Birmingham's civil rights district.

A Prison Drama Written and Performed by Prisoners

Prisons have been used as a setting for popular entertainment. The Netflix series “Orange is the New Black” is just one example. But a new radio drama is taking that a step further. “Corrections” is a health-themed drama produced by UAB that’s written by and performed by inmates at the Donaldson Correctional Facility in western Jefferson County. The first episode airs Saturday morning on WJLD AM 1400.

Affecting your surroundings…

Aspiring hip-hop artist and vegan activist, Walter Duke of Birmingham…

Making a quilt doesn’t have to take that long…

Retired quilter, Vasha Rosenblum of Birmingham…

We have to work together…

Manager of Primates and Giant Otters, Danielle Williams of Birmingham…

Arc Stories: October 2016 Edition

Three stories about the lasting impact other people can have upon our lives. An educator is trying his best to create some teachable moments for his students, and it’s through one encounter with a relative of Martin Luther King, Jr., that they finally have a breakthrough. A man who gets arrested and learns a lot about both […]

Arc Stories: September 2016 Edition

Three stories where our storytellers find themselves in situations completely over their heads. A woman has the opportunity to fulfill a dream she’s been pursuing most of her life; one woman’s discovery of whether or not you really can come home again; and another where a man struggles to create a connection across barriers of […]

A Look at the Struggling Neighborhoods of Birmingham’s West Side

Communities like Ensley, West End and Fairfield were commercial hubs during the industrial heyday of the late 1800s and early 1900s.

After 35 Years, ASO Musician Proud to Call Birmingham Home

The Alabama Symphony Orchestra features 53 full-time musicians from all over the world, each with a unique story. Kevin Kozak moved to Birmingham 35 years ago to join the group and currently plays 2nd horn. Mary Scott Hodgin speaks with Kevin about his journey to Alabama and why he has remained with the ASO for […]

Into White

Author Randi Pink knows her debut novel will ruffle feathers. It’s about a black student at a predominately white high school in Alabama. She prays to be turned white and it happens.

Miss Alabama Competes Sunday for the Miss America Crown

This Sunday is the big day for Miss Alabama Hayley Barber as she competes for Miss America crown. T