A Grain of Sand

Series produced by Charles McGuigan

Caption: PRX default Series image
PRX default Series image 

Weekly series featuring real stories that spring from the well of memory. Every narrative illuminates our shared human experience. At least that's the hope of producer Charles McGuigan.

I want to achieve the effect of a short story but told in a way that makes the listener feel part of evolving action.I love stories and believe narrative that flows directly from the well of experience illuminates like arc light, strikes with the force of iron.


157 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Caption: Live Art class Soul Sound, Credit: Charles McGuigan
Live Art, sponsored by the School of the Performing Arts in the Richmond Community (SPARC), is the only program of its kind in the country. It’s th...

  • Added: Aug 30, 2015
  • Length: 26:53
Piece image
Witch-hunts are a curious phenomena, and thoroughly reactionary in nature. They generally begin with an inexplicable event of one kind or other—cow...

  • Added: Aug 23, 2015
  • Length: 26:55
Caption: Gloria Rhoden, Credit: Charles McGuigan
Gloria Rhoden hails from Saint Mary, Jamaica. She has traveled the United States, up and down the East Coast for years. She knew Bob Marley and san...

  • Added: Aug 14, 2015
  • Length: 24:17
Caption: Lester Blackiston
Pirates love the water. It’s their sustenance, it’s their highway, it’s their haven. Lester Blackiston loved the water. As a matter of fact, I did...

  • Added: Aug 07, 2015
  • Length: 27:09
Caption: Bill Kirchen
Bill Kirchen is a showman and a storyteller. Mainly though he’s a singer and a songwriter and a player of the world’s most versatile Telecaster. Th...

  • Added: Jul 30, 2015
  • Length: 27:32
Caption: Bill Kirchen
He’s been called the Titan of the Telecaster, the King of Diesel Billy. Bill Kirchen is all that and a lot more. He’s a master in a league of his o...

  • Added: Jul 24, 2015
  • Length: 27:45
Caption: Master mason Victor Ayala, Credit: CharlesMcGuigan
When he was just a boy, Victor Iyella whose family was struggling in Guadalajara crossed the Rio Bravo on his own, only to be taken back to Mexico....

  • Added: Jul 17, 2015
  • Length: 28:06
Caption: The Jollimores raise mussels., Credit: Charles McGuigan
We return to Prince Edward Island where we’ll spend the next half hour with a father and daughter who produce what PEI has come to be known for the...

  • Added: Jul 10, 2015
  • Length: 27:06
Caption: Fields of sunflowers on PEI up near Souris., Credit: Charles McGuigan
The Mig Maw had a name for this place that means cradle on the waves. Which is exactly what Prince Edward Island—PEI as the people here call it—loo...

  • Added: Jul 02, 2015
  • Length: 26:31
Caption: Working waterman on Ocracoke., Credit: Charles McGuigan
Ocracoke Island North Carolina is like a republic unto itself, much like Key West, the Conch Republic. On the Scotch Bonnet Republic islanders have...

  • Added: Jun 26, 2015
  • Length: 24:36
Caption: J.B. Gaskill of Ocracoke Island, North Carolina., Credit: Charles McGuigan
Ocracoke Island North Carolina is the Key West of the mid-Atlantic. It's far removed from the mainland and the Outer Banks, surrounded by water, on...

  • Added: Jun 20, 2015
  • Length: 28:02
Caption: Colony of American oyster catchers on a lesser Barrier Island., Credit: Charles McGuigan
Oyster Virginia is an old fishing village on the seaside of the Easter Shore. On the road in there are old dead rises, some half submerged in the s...

  • Added: Jun 10, 2015
  • Length: 26:36
Caption: Moorings on Cobb Island., Credit: Charles McGuigan
Virginia’s Barrier Islands and the waters and salt marshes that surround them represent the most pristine coastal region on the Eastern Seaboard. U...

  • Added: Jun 02, 2015
  • Length: 25:24
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In this Prelude to Summer we end up on a parking lot late at night on the first day of summer, sprawled out on sleeping bags and looking up at the ...

  • Added: May 22, 2015
  • Length: 25:20
Caption: Diane Watkins of Richmond, Virginia.
A bell tower without a carillon is like a throat without a voice box. Utterly mute. This story could be called the mystery of the missing bells and...

  • Added: May 01, 2015
  • Length: 27:33
Caption: Lady E, Credit: John MacLellan
Lady E lost just about everything that gave her life meaning and then she found something else inside her. Her voice.And now Lady E sings the blues...

  • Added: Apr 02, 2015
  • Length: 27:23
Caption: Lady E, Credit: John MacLellan
The worst kind of grief for any parent came twice to this woman who would become Lady E. These dual tragedies changed this woman for good and wall ...

  • Added: Mar 27, 2015
  • Length: 26:49
Caption: John, Credit: Charles McGuigan
John has worked the corner of Laburnum Avenue and Brook Road for years now. He’s become a permanent fixture there and a daily reminder to motorists...

  • Added: Mar 20, 2015
  • Length: 26:04
Caption: John, Credit: Charles McGuigan
Every day of the week John stands near the corner of Laburnum Avenue and Brook Road in Richmond, Virginia’s Northside. He holds a sign that reads: ...

  • Added: Mar 13, 2015
  • Length: 27:05
Caption: Melvin Major, Credit: Rebecca D'Angelo
Fathers and Children is about a man named Melvin Major who became father to hundreds of young people. But he has no offspring.

  • Added: Mar 06, 2015
  • Length: 27:40