Election Day Winners And Losers, Renaming ‘Jazz,’ The Secrets Of Blucifer And Other Photos From The Week

Photo courtesy Jennifer Coombes
Trumpeter and composer Nicholas Payton drew controversy in 2011 with his rejection of the word “jazz.” Now, he’s reimagining black music with a new symphony.

In October, trumpeter and composer Nicholas Payton, above, the U.S. premiere of his "Black American Symphony" with the Colorado Springs Philharmonic. The trumpet virtuoso who grew up in a New Orleans jazz family. He first laid the groundwork for his symphony in a controversial 2011 blog post, titled "Why Jazz Isn't Cool Anymore." He suggested that the label "jazz" should be replaced with "Black American Music," and the idea hit a nerve.

New stories from 'Teens Under Stress'

Teens Abby Jones
Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Abby Jones

First, recent research suggests teens who use social media may be more likely to develop mental health problems like depression and anxiety. Some advocates and parents push hard to get teens off their phones, or at least limit their time. Abby Jones was the poster child for doing just that.

Then, La Plata County had one of the highest teen suicide rates in Colorado and staff at Mountain Middle School in Durango knew they had to do something. One of the first things that came to mind: a cell phone ban. So, seven years ago, that’s what they did. 

And, we invited a group of parents in for a conversation with Colorado Public Radio this week about how they talk with their teens about phones. While the parents talked, their kids listened outside the studio. Then we invited the teenagers to discuss their phones, as their parents listened.

Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Elijah in the CPR studios.
Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Chloe in the CPR studios.
Chris Neal/Shooter Imaging
A student at Mountain Middle School, a public charter school in Durango, Colo, puts her phone away before entering the building for the school day on Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019.
Chris Neal/Shooter Imaging
Mountain Middle School eighth graders Grace and Henry .
Chris Neal/Shooter Imaging
Shane Voss, the Head of School at Mountain Middle School, a public charter school in Durango, Colo.

Police found a brick of fentanyl — the largest amount ever recorded in Denver

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Harm Reduction Action Center Executive Director Lisa Ravelle holds up a fentanyl test strip, Nov. 6, 2019. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Through September, 144 people have died from drug overdoses in Denver (including alcohol), according to figures from DDPHE. At least 26 died from overdoses involving fentanyl this year, up from 17 who died from overdoses involving the drug in 2018.

Everything you wanted to know about Blucifer

Stephanie Wolf/CPR News
Luis Jimenez’s “Mustang” sculpture at DIA on Sept. 25, 2019.

Denverites colloquially know this mighty equine at the entrance to DIA as “Blucifer.” Some love it, some hate it, some love to hate it and many more are curious about it. Stephanie Wolf tells you everything you want to know about it.

Stephanie Wolf/CPR News
Michael Gunstanson and Adam Horst stand below “Mustang” on Sept. 25, 2019. They submitted questions about the artwork to Colorado Wonders.
Stephanie Wolf/CPR News
The glowing eyes of “Mustang” are LED flood lights and were a tribute to the artist’s father, who owned a neon shop.

Political victories, defeats and mileposts

Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
Last minute voters at the Denver Elections Division headquarters on Bannock Street in Denver.

Proposition DD won, opening Colorado to sports betting. Proposition CC failed, sending Democrats back to the TABOR drawing board. Local fracking control advocates won big. Sen. Michael Bennet signed papers to officially get on the presidential primary ballot in New Hampshire, and we spoke with voters all over.

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Drea poses for a portrait while talking about Election Day during her shift at the Sun Valley Kitchen.
Sam Brasch/CPR News
Five Broomfield city council members-elect celebrate their wins on election night.
Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
House Speaker and Democratic state Rep. KC Becker was among the supporters of Proposition CC at a watch party election night. The measure was defeated.
Caitlyn Kim/CPR News
Sen. Michael Bennet signs his paperwork to be on the presidential ballot in New Hampshire on Nov. 6, 2019.
Stina Sieg/CPR News
Toby the dog on Election Day as his human, Becky Myers, took him on car ride to the Mesa County polling place in Grand Junction.

We're all about the arts and culture

Thomas "Detour" Evans speaks to a reporter during the installation of his "5 Pointers Museum" at the Redline Contemporary Art Center, Oct. 31, 2019.

Bassist and local musical legend Charles Burrell stopped by for a chat with CPR Classical. Ra Ra Riot played in the performance studio for Indie 102.3. Playwrite Rodney Hicks visited Colorado Matters. And visitors to the RedLine Contemporary Art Center in Denver's Five Points can start experiencing the future of Denver on Nov. 8 with the opening of the gallery’s 5 Pointers Museum.

Bassist Charles Burrell visits CPR Classical for an interview.
Hart Van Dernburg/CPR
Ra Ra Riot performs for Indie 102.3.
"Flame Broiled" Playwrite Rodney Hicks
Hart Van Denburg/CPR News
"Flame Broiled" playwrite Rodney Hicks in the Colorado Matters studio.

Sometimes folks just want their pictures taken for no particular reason

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
Kevin was happy to oblige: Helen Dearing in Five Points