3/7/08 The Wire podcasts: Clarke Peters


We stopped by Clarke’s Charles Village rowhome one recent morning to tape this interview.  By interview, I mean a laid back conversation around the dining room table, talking about all sorts of things: Baltimore, theater, race, politics, culture, Europe, America, and of course, The Wire and his character, Detective Lester Freamon.  Oh, have you heard there are discussions of a Wire movie?  Clarke brings it up near the end of the interview.  So, sit back, relax, click here, and listen.  Running time is 43:41.

To read the transcript of the interview, click here.

Check this out – yesterday Time magazine published an article written by The Wire’s five writers: Ed Burns, Dennis Lehane, George Pelecanos, Richard Price, and David Simon.  It’s called “The Wire’s War on the Drug War” and they argue for jury nullification on all non-violent drug cases.  Here’s a quote:

“If asked to serve on a jury deliberating a violation of state or federal drug laws, we will vote to acquit, regardless of the evidence presented. Save for a prosecution in which acts of violence or intended violence are alleged, we will — to borrow Justice Harry Blackmun’s manifesto against the death penalty — no longer tinker with the machinery of the drug war. No longer can we collaborate with a government that uses nonviolent drug offenses to fill prisons with its poorest, most damaged and most desperate citizens.”

Read the whole article.  In light of the recent news that 1 in 100 U.S. adults are in prison, giving us the highest rate of incarceration in the world, what do you think?

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the CEM Wire podcast series!

And come back tomorrow, the last day before the series finale airs, for a new interview with Andre Royo aka Bubbles aka Bubs!!

21 Responses

  1. iTunes thinks something is wrong with the title of the file. The file downloaded fine, though, and sounds good in iTunes. I didn’t transer it to the iPod.

    The title should be fixed.. thanks for always looking out!


  2. iTunes is not catching the new version. Perhaps this is temporary, maybe it will show up tomorrow? I don’t know.

    NetTransport grabbed it, no problem.

  3. We still have a problem. I have two copies of the file, one captured with NetTransport and one captured via right-click and Save Target As…

    These mp3 files play fine in Windows Media Player, and they can be added to the iTunes library, where they also play OK. They go into iTunes without a legible title, however.

  4. Great interviews Marc !!!

    It seems appropriate to have someone so connected to issues in Baltimore celebrate ” the Wire” and the attention it has brought to important issues in our urban centers.

  5. This was the best one yet, if only because I had never heard a decent interview with Peters before – whereas Burns and Simon get a lot more press. Can’t wait until I get a spare minute to listen to Bubs.

  6. THANK YOU!!

    A big thank you to Mr. Steiner for the site and the interviews and another huger thank you to Mr. Peters for painting a small swath of the rich tapestry that is his life – both Wire related and his theater experience in Europe. I loved the anecdote about the trumpets in the alley. I’d love to see a long form piece in a major paper like the Times or an Esquire mag profile on Clarke Peters. He is infested with wisdom, perspective, and life experience. I’d read or listen to anything this man wanted to say or any story he wants to tell. Hell, if I had the forum and the skills , I’d write the Clarke Peters piece myself. I also love August Wilson and love to hear Clarke’s stories about his experience with Ma Rainey.

    To finish this comment thanks for *all* the podcasts. I wish they were all longer. Thank you.

  7. Saturday night I posted a diary at The Great Orange Satan. It is a smattering of news reports from a few African nations. I’m working my way through the alphabet.

  8. Producers,

    When I try to click into the Clarke Peters thread, and only this thread, Internet Explorer often shuts down. I made it through this time, obviously, but it has been giving me a lot of trouble.

    The problem began Friday night (I think). The other threads are not balky.

    The problem happens whether I click on the title or the comments link.

  9. Perhaps I should post this in another thread, because I’ve been having trouble getting into this one, but here goes:

    Someone is mucking about with files in the FCC database.

    For the record and for future reference, here is the FCC gateway page for WYPR:


    Links to a lot of information are available below the first big batch of numbers.

    This is the Ownership Report Search Results page for WYPR:


    I posted a comment on Feb. 29 with links to the three most recent ownership reports. Each report naturally had a separate URL. The identical URLs exist today, but the reports associated with them have changed. These report forms are from the “application” links in the right-side column. Viewing the reports from the FCC page seems more reliable than viewing them via links in this blog. Don’t know why that would be.

    (Joe in Waverly, now I’m saving web pages. Thanks for the suggestion.)

    I didn’t retain the file numbers from before, but here are the current Main File Numbers, as of 3/10/08.

    Your Public Radio Holding Corporation
    File No. BOS – 20071203CCA

    Your Public Radio Corporation
    File No. BOS – 20071203CBQ

    WYPR License Holding LLC
    File No. BOS – 20071203CBI

    All these reports have info accurate as of 11/27/07, signed by Brandon 12/03/07. You see this date in the file numbers.

    All these reports are listed as “Transfer of Control or Assignment of License/Permit”. I think the reports that came up previously were listed as biennial reports, but I’m not positive. The three 20070507 reports are (as of right now) listed as biennials.

    The reports available on 2/29/08 were certified to contain info accurate as of a date in mid-or-late December, the date is in my Feb 29 comment. Therefore, I assume that those reports had different file numbers.

    Brandon certified that he was Manager of WYPR License Holding, LLC, in the relevant 12/03/07 report.

    In the other two 12/03/07 reports, Brandon certified he was President of Your Public Radio Corporation and President of Your Public Radio Holding Corporation.

  10. Ron

    thanks for the thanks, but what do you mean that someone is mucking about with the FCC files? more details please-should we telephone the FCC w specific questions?
    i never doubt the power of the evil empire.

    Joe in Waverly

  11. Joe,

    I mean the URLs I posted on Feb 29 go to different files now than they did on Feb 29. The URLs have not changed, the files have changed.

  12. Changing FCC files must be easy when reports are filed electronically. Any authorized user probably could do it.

    This was the first thought that popped into my head this morning when I woke up.

    Imagine your computer to be a server. Every document on the hard drive would have a URL. Any person authorized to use your computer and access a file could change the contents of the file. The document URL would not change.

    Said user also could change the title of an Excel or Word document, for example, without changing the URL. I’m not sure about changing FCC report numbers, though. I don’t know how the numbers are generated. For example, does a report automatically receive a new number every time it’s edited and saved? Maybe. Easy.

    I looked up fjallfoss, the first term in the URLs for the WYPR ownership reports.

    Here’s the first screen:


    I conclude, anybody with a proper FRN could change the files. Easy.

    That should have been obvious, right? I am such a dummy.

  13. A biennial FCC ownership report for Facility ID Number 65753, as WJHU, was filed by The Johns Hopkins University in June 2001. Subsequent biennial reports for Facility 65753, as WYPR, were filed in May or June 2003, and May 2007. As of today, I do not find biennial reports for 2005.

    All WYPR reports submitted as biennial reports have file numbers beginning with the BOA prefix.

    The first reports listed for WYPR were filed in February 2002. Today’s versions of these reports are listed as biennial reports. Today’s versions of these reports do not list any loan contract(s). These reports are not biennial reports. They are transfer reports, obviously, and whoever submitted the reports as biennial reports and certified the information to be accurate submitted fraudulent reports. The signer of these reports is listed as Your Public Radio Corporation for both reports. A human person’s name does not appear as signer, but the certification section says “I certify that I am President of Your Public Radio Corporation”. That would be Anthony S. Brandon according to the report for Your Public Radio Corporation (BOA-20020222ADW).

    BOA-20020222ADW lists 9 people (Marc Steiner and 8 of the original loan guarantors) each having 11.00% ownership interests in Your Public Radio Corporation. The owner of any interest of 1% or more is required to be listed, but no owner is listed for the missing 1%.

    I think another false statement in BOA-20020222ADW is that Your Public Radio Station is the legal name of the licensee for Facility 65753. I think the legal name of the licensee for Facility 65753 at that time was WYPR License Holding LLC. Someone else would have to address this question.

    (BOA-20020131ACI, the first 2002 ownership report for WYPR License Holding LLC, says WYPR License Holding LLC is the legal name of the licensee for the WYPR facility.)

    WYPR ownership reports submitted as transfer reports all have file numbers beginning with the BOS prefix. Later in 2002 (August) transfer reports document transfer of control from Your Public Radio Corporation to a new entity, Your Public Radio Holding Corporation. Todays versions of these files do not indicate the date of incorporation of the new entity, and do not list any loan contract(s). Marc Steiner is gone, replaced by Jane Daniels (BOS-20020828AAJ). 7 persons are shown to have 12.00% ownership interests, while Jane and Ann Daniels each have 6.00% interests. The missing 4% interest is not accounted for.

    The next reports, the biennial reports filed in 2003, still do not list any loan contract(s). In today’s version of the ownership report for Your Public Radio Holding Corporation (BOA-20030612ADZ, signed by Anthony Brandon), the ownership section is empty.

    I don’t find biennial reports for 2005. Why not?

    The next biennial reports, filed in May 2007, include BOA-20070507ADD for Your Public Radio Holding Corporation, and BOA-020070507ADB for Your Public Radio Corporation. BOA-20070507ADD for Your Public Radio Holding Company lists Barbara Bozzuto, Anthony Brandon, Albert Williams, Ann Daniels, Darielle Linehan, and William Clarke III as each having 16.60% ownership interests. Charles Salisbury, Jr., Jonathon Melnick, and Jane Daniels are gone. Should this ownership change have triggered a “transfer of control” report at some point? Perhaps not, I don’t know.

    The ownership change was not noted in the handouts from the Feb 20 CAB meeting.

    Are Salisbury and Melnick still loan guarantors? I don’t know. Was/is Jane Daniels a loan guarantor? I don’t know.

    BOA-020070507ADB for Your Public Radio Corporation shows, for the first time, a Pledge and Security Agreement with the Maryland Economic Development Corporation and the Mercantile Safe Deposit and Trust Company, as of 3/1/04. Does anyone know what this is about? Does it have anything to do with the 2004 purchase of WJTM (Frederick)?

    Transfer reports were filed for WJTM, both signed by Anthony Brandon, 12/30/04, with info certified accurate as of 12/1/04. Today’s versions of the reports are BOS-20050103AHF for YOUR PUBLIC RADIO HOLDING CORPORATION and BOS-20050103AGS for YOUR PUBLIC RADIO CORPORATION. Neither report lists the 3/1/04 Pledge and Security Agreement.

    BOS-20050103AHF ownership data shows that Jane Daniels is gone, with the other 8 now holding 12.50% interests. Melnick and Salisbury are still on the list.

    The 3/1/04 Pledge and Security Agreement is listed in BOA-20070507ADF (YOUR PUBLIC RADIO CORPORATION), a May 2007 biennial report filed for WYPF, successor to WJTM.

    Today’s ownership search for WYPR shows the three transfer reports mentioned previously, supposedly filed in December 2007, but apparently edited in early March 2008. Ownership supposedly has not changed since May. These reports reflect the acquisition of the WRXS in Ocean City, which became WYPO. This might be the reason transfer reports were submitted. Another possible reason is that BOS-20071203CBQ, for Your Public Radio Corporation, now shows a Pledge and Security Agreement with the Maryland Economic Development Corporation and PNC Bank, 11/1/07. What is this about, does anyone know? I asked about this in a previous comment, but did not receive a reply.

    WYPR’s July 30 press release about the WRXS acquisition said

    “Brandon notes that no listener dollars were used in the purchase of WRXS. Bond financing was arranged through Mercantile Bank to fund the acquisition and repayment of the loan will come from membership and underwriting from the Ocean City/Salisbury areas.”

    This is the end of my research to date. More work remains to be done, I think. For example, if one of these stations gets sold, who gets the money? And, what’s going on on the Eastern Shore. A while ago, I read about WAMU being granted a permit to build a 50 KW transmitter in Ocean City. WYPO is a 1 KW station.

  14. This Charles H. Salisbury Jr. seems like the same Charles Salisbury Jr. who was, and might still be, a guarantor for the WYPR purchase loan. In 2004, he was president and director of Salisbury Broadcasting in Baltimore, Maryland.

    Charles H. Salisbury, Jr. was a Johns Hopkins Hospital Trustee, 2006-2007.

    Salisbury Broadcasting Corporation (Charles Salisbury, president) sold (?) KXTY-FM in 2007.

    Salisbury Radio LLC (Anne Salisbury, member) sold KWWV-FM in 2006. American General Media Corp. was the broker. From the same link, Salisbury Broadcasting Corp. (Charles Salisbury Jr., president/director) sold KXTY-FM, American General Media Corp., broker.

    American General Media is Brandon’s company. From the vision statement,

    “COURAGE and PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY for our actions, our ability to admit mistakes, and to persist in adversity toward the goals of our clients, listeners and our company.

    ADVANCEMENT of ourselves through the advancement of the company.”

  15. Back to spelunking a problem with the Clarke Peters interview:

    Consider the Ed Burns interview file I downloaded several days ago using rightclick Save Target As… In a folder, edburnsfinalMP3.mp3 is the displayed filename. When I view file properties, the Title: line on the Summary tab is empty. RealPlayer and Windows Media Player use the filename edburnsfinalMP3 when playing the file. iTunes imports the mp3 file from my drive (using the File menu, not acquiring the podcast via subscription) shows edburnsfinalMP3 to be the filename.

    Now consider the Clarke Peters interview file, which is the point of this comment. I just now downloaded it using rightclick Save Target As… In a folder, clarkepetersfinal.mp3 is the displayed filename. When I view flie properties, the Title: line on the summary tab contains ‰: preceded by a rectangle character. RealPlayer and Windows Media Player use the Title: info. iTunes also uses the Title: info when the mp3 file is imported as above.

    When something else is entered in the Properties/Summary/Title: line, RealPlayer, Windows Media Player, and iTunes all use the something else datum.

    iTunes still is not picking up the Clarke Peters podcast.

  16. Ron–
    My iTunes picked the interview up fine just a minute ago via the feed. Have you right clicked your mouse over the listing and selected “update podcast”?

    I just discovered a problem in the way we had entered the duration of the piece-this may have been causing problems for some people.

    I am unsure what is causing the title to be acting strangely, but I will be checking into it.


  17. Ron-

    I figured out why that happened (I don’t know what happened to make it happen, but I figured out why it is displaying that rectangle). Now I am attempting to fix it.


  18. The end of my drama with podcasts is, everything seems to be OK now.

    I went to Switchpod, then to the Podcasts page. With pleasure, I noted a “What’s Cool” box, featuring Center for Emerging Media. I clicked that link and went here. Below Marc’s picture, and above the list of episodes, there is a “Subscribe to Podcast” button. Pressing the button got me a new folder in iTunes and all the podcasts, no problem. (I assume the “Add to iTunes” button would accomplish the same thing.)

    Then I deleted the old group of podcasts from the iTunes/Podcasts library.

    Perhaps I had done something to deactivate my previous subscription? I have no idea what the problem was, but the problem must have been here, not at Switchpod or CEM. Jessica and Justin, I regret having wasted your time about this.

    Heehee, skinning cats is as much fun as following breadcrumbs.

  19. The April 15 meeting of Your Public Radio Corporation BoD (3 p.m.) will be held here:

    Church of the Redeemer
    5603 N. Charles Street
    Baltimore, MD 21210

    I suppose Brandon will occupy the pulpit, because he weilds the only voting interest on this board.

    Hat tips to Phil and Joe in Waverly for heads-ups about the March 7 op-ed essay by John Machen, and the responsive comments. I guess the article will go into archives soon, but the link is live right now.

    John P. Machen (Jack Machen) is a Partner, DLA Piper Rudnick LLP, and a member of the Board of Directors of Your Public Radio Corporation, one of the layers of the three-tiered WYPR corporate jumble. Anthony Brandon is the only member of this board that represents a voting interest. DLA Piper is the largest contributor to Hillary Clinton in the 2008 election cycle, but Open Secrets does not show any contributions in this cycle from Machen himself.

    I don’t get the point of this editorial. Can someone say what I’m missing? If Machen’s purpose was to distance himself from a charge of attempted bribery or conspiracy to bribe, I don’t think he reached the goal. Perhaps commentors are correct, maybe the essay is merely a meaningless public relations blurb.

    In the Marc Steiner matter, all power is vested in Your Public Radio Holding Corporation, of which Machen is not a member. Machen doesn’t baldly assert that he was involved, but he obtusely insinuates that he was. At least, I am inferring that a closed meeting of the Your Public Radio Corporation BoD was held at some point. When? If held after Marc’s firing, the most it could have done was retroactively vote to support Brandon. Publicly available information indicates that Marc Steiner, a Your Public Radio Corporation BoD member at the time, was not invited to or did not attend a closed meeting held before he was terminated, but I suppose such a meeting might have taken place.

    Machen’s essay raises more questions than it answers.

  20. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea culpa.

    A link in one of my comments is broken. Sorry.

    The page from which to subscribe to CEM podcasts is here.

    Another version of the link is


  21. Charles Village rowhome?? I thought (and read elsewhere) that Clarke Peters lives in London?

    Chris–He does spend most of his time in London. But he bought a house in Charles Village while filming The Wire and returns there several times a year. -Jessica

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