Christopher Blank

It all started with ghost stories. Dad convinced me that spirits lurked just outside my bedroom door at night. After years of night terrors, I began listening to LPs of spooky tales, memorizing them and acting them out around campfires on those balmy winter nights in South Florida. In this way, other children would suffer as I had.

 

Naturally, this dramatic flair evolved into a prestigious four-year engagement on the high school drama circuit where my mother’s rapturous reviews provoked standing ovations also from my mother.

 

One day, while working part time as a copy clerk at the St. Petersburg Times, an editor asked me why my hair was dyed bright orange. I explained that it was because I was “an actor.” Was my future decided out of pity? Out of concern for my mental health? I cannot read minds. However, the next thing that happened is that I was made a theater critic.

 

For more than a decade, The Commercial Appeal’s readers tolerated my opinions on everything from classical music to ballet. Even WKNO-FM let me create a little club for theatergoers.

 

When this fine radio station went looking for someone to tell stories of the “news” variety, I made the argument that Memphis is a city full of great stories; no other has a richer cultural narrative. The crossroads of America is a crucible of stories from all walks of life. Also, crossroads are known for ghosts and devils, and who doesn’t love those?

 

They totally bought the argument. So now, I’m looking for great stories. What’s yours?

This week on WKNO's Behind the Headlines, panelists discuss the future of Overton Park and the Brooks Museum's decision to build a new home in Downtown Memphis.

For 60 years, a small recording studio in South Memphis, near the corner of East Trigg and Willie Mitchell Boulevard, has survived changing music styles, economic ups and downs and generational shifts.

Royal Studios is now one of the oldest continuously-operating recording studios in the world.


This week on WKNO's Behind the Headlines, Paul Young, Director for Memphis Housing and Community Development, discusses tentative plans for the Fairgrounds and Coliseum, as well as neighborhood revitalization efforts with Bill Dries of the Memphis Daily News and host Eric Barnes. 

This week on WKNO's Behind the Headlines, host Eric Barnes talks with Toby Sells of the Memphis Flyer and Bill Dries of the Memphis Daily News about the future of the Mid-South Fairgrounds and Coliseum, the upcoming election, Overton Park and their late colleague Bernal Smith.

This week on WKNO-TV's Behind the Headlines host Eric Barnes talks about potential changes to the Pinch District, the Cook Convention Center and more. Panelists include Kevin Kane, president & CEO of the Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau, Jennifer Oswalt, interim president & CEO for the Downtown Memphis Commission, and Bill Dries, senior reporter for the Memphis Daily News

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