If youre missing the crew at Bettys Diner, sketched lovingly by Carrie Newcomer in her CD of that name, you get a chance to find out what theyand some newcomershave been up to. Regulars and Refugees tells the stories of a single mother, a recovering addict, a worn-out angel, and others in a place where light falls "like forgiveness, from unexpected sources." A heaping bowl of community, compassion, and hope. Rounder Records.
In his hour-long documentary Theologians Under Hitler, producer-director (and pastor) Steven Martin chronicles the horrifying tale of Gerhard Kittel, Emanuel Hirsch, and Paul Althaus, three German Protestant theology professors who supported Hitler during the Third Reich. Part of the "German Christian" movement, they championed a radical nationalism and saw Hitler as a unique blessing from God. The DVD includes an interview with an elderly pastor of the Confessing Church. Vitalvisuals.com
Groups working for social change often split along class lines, which limits their reach and effectiveness. Economic justice activist Betsy Leondar-Wright set out to change that reality, interviewing 40 "activists and thinkers" for insights into breaking the lines. Class Matters: Cross-Class Alliance Building for Middle-Class Activists is stuffed with interesting perspectives, graphics, resources, inspiring stories, and suggestions for collaborating more effectively. Above all, its practical. New Society Publishers.
If I Had a...Song
The 12 tracks on American Folk, put out by Putumayo, cover a range of styles, everything from folk-rock to "folkabilly" to a spare acoustic guitar. Nanci Griffith covers Bob Dylans "Boots of Spanish Leather," Eric Bibb sings "Judge Not Your Brother," Lucy Kaplansky offers a reflection on parenthood in "I Had Something," and Natalie Merchants "Owensboro" tells the story of low-income folks in a small Southern town. A portion of the albums sales will be donated to the anti-poverty group Mercy Corps. www.putumayo.com