Taylor Haney

The Marine Corps, the smallest U.S. military force, has plans for a big overhaul designed to address its lack of diversity and problem with retaining troops.

The goal that's driving what amounts to a cultural shift within the service, is for the Marines "to reflect America, to reflect the society we come from," Gen. David Berger, commandant of the Marine Corps, said in an interview with NPR's Morning Edition.

It's not a matter of being politically correct or "woke," he said.

Brian Skerry says it was "the stuff of dreams" to be in the water with a nursing sperm whale.

The National Geographic photographer and explorer dove into Caribbean waters to capture what he believes to be a unique image. He got within a few meters to get the shot.

Morning Edition's Song Project is a series where songwriters are asked to write an original song about the COVID era – our newest song is from Kaoru Ishibashi, an Asian-American musician and songwriter who performs as Kishi Bashi. The song is called "For Every Voice That Never Sang," about the feeling of being an outsider in your own country.

Jason Burt, of Clarksburg, Calif., knew his grandfather played the trumpet in World War II.

He had listened to stories about the 746th Far East Air Force Band boosting morale for servicemen on the front lines of the Philippines theater.

But, for decades, the family hadn't seen his grandfather's vinyl recordings of the ensemble until 2019, when they were clearing out their grandparents' house.

"I knew they were around, and I was kind of hoping they would turn up at some point. And we found them in the attic," Burt told NPR's Morning Edition.

Do you ever hear the news and just want to scream?

Maybe you're raging 10 months into the pandemic or you're just having a regular old rough day?

There's a number you can dial to just yell into the void.

The hotline was set up by Chris Gollmar, an elementary school teacher and an artist in New York City, in the fall, before the election. He could see people might need a place to vent.

President-elect Joe Biden is set to restore a bipartisan norm upon moving into the White House: presidential dogs. The Bidens have two German shepherds, Champ and Major.

Major, in particular, has a "wags to riches" tail.

He'll soon be the first dog to go from a shelter to the White House. That shelter, the Delaware Humane Association, plans to "indogurate" Major on Sunday in a virtual ceremony. (People and pets alike are invited to attend.)

Makaya McCraven calls himself a beat scientist, so it's no surprise when you ask about his childhood, you hear he was pretty much surrounded by rhythm.

"Rehearsals at our house, banging on drums since I was able to hold a drumstick, sleeping in my dad's bass drum," he recalls. "There was no front head, and a little pillow in there. And you could just kinda go in and lay down if you're small enough."

Phoebe Bridgers is the first to admit that she's not reinventing herself on her new album. "There's nothing avant-garde about it," she says of Punisher, her second solo record and fourth major musical project in the last three years. Even so, there's a quiet, assertive power to Punisher.

The shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic hit musicians hard, with concert halls and rehearsal spaces shuttered and silent. But a new music initiative from the Library of Congress embraces the constraints of COVID-19. The series is a collection of 10 videos of 10 different original compositions that will premiere online starting Monday, June 15. It's called the Boccaccio Project.