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Tennessee State University is hoping to make history after their marching band was nominated for a Grammy in the roots gospel category. The historically Black university's Aristocrat of Bands teamed up with gospel songwriter and producer Sir the Baptist last year to record “The Urban Hymnal.” The record features an all-star ensemble of gospel singers. Some songs are new arrangements of classic hymns, while others were written especially for the new record. Baptist says gospel is embedded in the culture of HBCUs, so the collaboration made sense. For instance, at TSU, the fight song is the old Christian hymn, “I'm So Glad.” Baptist says, "These hymnals brought us from slavery to the White House.”

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MEMPHIS, Tenn.. (AP) — The Memphis police chief has called the actions of five officers involved in the violent arrest of Tyre Nichols “heinous, reckless and inhumane" and made a plea to residents of the city to protest peacefully when video of the arrest is released to the public.

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A bill introduced in the Colorado legislature would create a $2 million pilot program to use cameras, likely with artificial intelligence technology, in high-risk locations to help identify fires before they burn out of control. The bill comes a year after the most destructive wildfire in the state’s history scorched nearly 1,100 homes. The goal is for cameras and an AI algorithm to detect the plume of smoke and alert first responders who can stomp out the blaze before it grows. The proposed pilot program to help quench increasingly drastic wildfires in Colorado will receive its first hearing from lawmakers on Thursday.

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A northern Virginia man convicted nearly a decade ago of supporting the Islamic State group as a teenager has now been accused of violating his terms of release by meeting with a convicted Taliban supporter. According to court documents, the FBI photographed Ali Shukri Amin meeting with John Walker Lindh on three different occasions in 2021. Prosecutors say Amin is barred from meeting with known extremists. Amin was only 17 when he was sentenced to prison for spreading Islamic State propaganda on social media. Lindh was dubbed the American Taliban after he was captured in the weeks after the Sept. 11 attacks fighting with Taliban forces against the U.S.-backed Northern Alliance.

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For some people who believe in sustainable living, it's not enough to recycle and compost. They’ve reduced their annual waste to zero, or close to it. They’ve ditched the clothes dryer, maybe, or given up flying. In the case of Manhattanite Josh Spodek, his efforts to go packaging-free changed his mindset so drastically that it led him to reduce his electrical consumption to near zero. He even ditched his fridge, which he said was the biggest source of electrical use in his apartment. Spodek is experimenting in living nearly grid-free in a city that in many ways is the epitome of grids. He says he’s not against refrigeration in general. But he views it as unnecessary for everyone to have one.

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Stocks are swinging through mixed trading on Wall Street following reports suggesting the economy and corporate profits may be doing better than feared. The S&P 500 was virtually unchanged in late morning trading after an earlier gain of 0.9% vanished. More swing swings may still be ahead, as each of the reports guiding the market had both positives and negatives for investors. The headliner showed the economy held up better through the last three months of 2022 than expected. Reports from Tesla and others helped build optimism a day after worries flared following forecasts from Microsoft widely seen as discouraging.

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The U.S. economy expanded at a 2.9% annual pace from October through December, ending 2022 with momentum despite the pressure of high interest rates and widespread fears of a looming recession. Thursday’s government estimate showed that the nation’s gross domestic product — the broadest gauge of economic output — decelerated last quarter from the 3.2% annual growth rate it had posted from July through September. Most economists think the economy will slow further in the current quarter and slide into at least a mild recession by midyear. The economy got a boost last quarter from resilient consumer spending and the restocking of supplies by businesses. Federal government spending also helped lift GDP.

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A liberal judge running in a pivotal race to determine majority control of the Wisconsin Supreme Court is touting her support for abortion rights in the first two television ads of the closely watched race. The winner of the April 4 election will determine whether the court remains under control of conservative justices or flips to a liberal majority. Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Janet Protasiewicz launched the promotional spots Thursday as part of a $700,000 ad buy leading up to the Feb. 21 primary election. She is the first of four candidates to run ads in the race.

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Virginia Senate Democrats have defeated several bills that would have restricted abortion access in the state. Among them was a measure that was a priority for Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin. The Senate Committee on Education and Health voted the measures down without debate Thursday morning after a subcommittee had previously recommended that they be defeated. The votes were not a surprise. Democrats who control the state Senate have promised since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year to defeat any effort to curtail abortion access, including a push by Youngkin to enact a 15-week ban with exceptions for rape, incest and the life of the mother. Youngkin’s spokeswoman said Senate Democrats had “solidified their extreme position" with the votes.

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!