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Musician and composer Frank Zappa was a lot of things: biting satirist, ferocious critic of societal norms, outspoken defender of free speech. He saw himself as not only an entertainer, but also a serious composer. And he saw no contradiction in being all of these things at once, to the consternation and confusion of the many journalists who interviewed him.

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Ralph Stanley, Bluegrass Legend, Dies At 89

11 hours ago
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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Michael Herr, whose depictions of Vietnam redefined the genre of war reporting, died Thursday at a hospital near his home in upstate New York after what his publisher said was a long illness. He was 76.

When Herr left to cover the Vietnam War for Esquire, he didn't bring a great amount of journalistic experience. At 27, he'd been an amateur film critic, written some travel pieces and had worked on Syracuse University's literary magazine. But by the time his book Dispatches came out 10 years later, none of that mattered.

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