Gwen Thompkins Gwen Thompkins hosts hosts Music Inside Out on WWNO.
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Gwen Thompkins

Gwen Thompkins
Jacques Coughlin/NPR

Gwen Thompkins

Gwen Thompkins hosts Music Inside Out on WWNO in New Orleans.

Up until recently, she was an NPR foreign correspondent covering East Africa. She was based in Nairobi, Kenya, reporting on the countries, people and happenings from the Horn to the heart of Africa.

Since arriving in Africa in 2006, Thompkins has reported on the toppling of the Islamic Courts Union government in Somalia, ethnic violence in Kenya, insecurity in Darfur and Sudan's first nationwide elections in a generation. She has also written a series on the Nile River, traveling from the shores of Lake Victoria to the Mediterranean Sea. Heading south, she has reported stories from South Africa and Antarctica.

From 1996 to 2006, Thompkins was senior editor of Weekend Edition Saturday. Working with Scott Simon she learned — among other things — that when a horse walks into a bar, the bartender has to say, "So, why the long face?"

While at Weekend Edition, Thompkins also reported from her hometown of New Orleans. In the months following Hurricane Katrina, she and senior producer Sarah Beyer Kelly filed stories on the aftermath of the storm and the rebuilding efforts.

Before coming to NPR, Thompkins worked as a reporter and editor at The Times-Picayune newspaper.

A graduate of Newcomb College at Tulane University, Thompkins majored in history and Soviet studies. While on a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship, she was in Eastern Europe when the Berlin Wall fell. Fortunately, she says, she was not injured.

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Sweet Crude Augusta Sagnelli/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Sweet Crude On World Cafe

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Don Vappie On World Cafe

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Maggie Koerner On World Cafe

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Dr. John, one of the icons of New Orleans' music scene, performs on stage during the Nice's Jazz Festival, July 18, 2010. Valery Hache/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Gwen Thompkins on World Cafe

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Patriarch Of New Orleans Musical Family, Ellis Marsalis, Dies At 85

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Fats Domino, Founding Father Of Rock 'N' Roll, Dies At 89

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A 1967 portrait of Fats Domino. The singer and pianist died Oct. 24 at age 89. Clive Limpkin/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images hide caption

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Fats Domino, Architect Of Rock 'N' Roll, Dead At 89

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Ernie K Doe performs at the 2001 New Orleans Jazz Festival. Leon Morris/Redferns hide caption

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01Stanton Moore, 'Here Come The Girls'

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    Song
    Stanton Moore, 'Here Come The Girls'
    Album
    With You In Mind
    Artist
    Stanton Moore
    Released
    2017

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Alfred Drake and Patricia Morison perform in the 1958 TV adaptation of Kiss Me, Kate. The music by Cole Porter employed accidental notes to help illustrate the lyrics. Ralph Morse/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images hide caption

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How 'Accidental' Notes Grab Our Attention

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Allen Toussaint performs at the 2007 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. Sean Gardner/Getty Images hide caption

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Hear An Unreleased Song By Allen Toussaint

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Nothing, Not Even Recovery, Moves Quickly In New Orleans

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