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Mayor Sly James

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Mayor Sly James reviewed a product.
Russell Stover Pecan Delight Gusset Bag, 16.10 Ounce

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, wait, aren’t these the old-fashioned chocolates my brother and I got in fights over because he’d always take a bite out of every one until he got the filling he wanted, and I’d point out that he could simply look at the key on the inside of the box and he’d know which chocolate had which filling, dummy, and he’d punch my arm really hard and I’d cry and then my mom would give me an extra chocolate and it would almost be worth it? Well, the short answer is, yeah, these are those chocolates. Not the lavender-scented Venezuelan cinnamon-dusted 90% cacao with organic pistachio potpourri filling. These are the traditional filled chocolates that say, Mmmm, ‘merica. These are the straight-ahead, heart-shaped box, mix of milk chocolate and dark, mysteriously shot full of various tasty goo and nuts and fruits and what have you, straight from the heart of the country, crafted by the one of its oldest confectioners and two of Kansas City’s most storied entrepreneurs, Clara and Russell Stover. That’s not to say that other local business geniuses haven’t done equally impressive things. This is startup heaven, here in KC, recognized as one of the best cities in America to start a business. The business survival rate here is amazingly high. But not every business becomes an empire. That’s what the Stovers built out of these little noshes. Yum. Empire tastes pretty good.

Mayor Sly James reviewed a product.
The Essential

I can’t believe this record is 25 years old, or that the music on it goes back a half-century. It’s still as fresh as tomorrow’s news. Fresher, actually, because the news seems to be repeating itself a lot lately. Charlie Parker played everything brand-new. He’s universally acknowledged as the greatest alto sax player ever, even though he died at 35, before he ever got to reinvent himself. Instead, he reinvented jazz. The art form was already revolutionizing here in KC MO, where Parker was born and buried and where, during his lifetime, a crazy-corrupt political machine ran the town. Say what you want about that (and there’s lots to say), it was a hopping town, with the greatest musicians of the era constantly coming through on a kind of jazz circuit that included New York, Chicago, and ultimately the west coast as well. Charlie Parker’s famed performances and collaborations with other musicians are beautifully preserved on this album, remastered from sessions back in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He was burning white hot back then. Have a listen. If you get inspired, as people often do, come visit his hometown, humming “Kansas City, Here I Come” all the way. We run things differently than the old political bosses did back then, but it’s still a great place to hear live music (we’re rated one of the top 15 jazz cities on earth) and savor the heritage of one of America’s greatest cultural contributions to the world.