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Mackenzie Martin

Podcast Producer/Reporter

Whether it’s something happening right now or something that happened 100 years ago, some stories don’t fit in the short few minutes of a newscast. As a podcast producer at KCUR, I help investigate questions and local curiosities in a way that brings listeners along for adventures with plot twists and thought-provoking ideas. Sometimes there isn’t an easy answer in the end – but my hope is that we all leave with a greater understanding of the city we live in.

I'm a podcast producer and reporter at KCUR. I help make Real Humans By Gina Kaufmann, A People's History of Kansas City and Hungry For MO. Reach me at mackenzie@kcur.org or find me on Twitter @_macmartin.

  • For more than a century, Carry Nation's Prohibition rampages have inspired mockery. What we've missed, though, is the story of a disenfranchised person getting fed up and demanding more from the leaders charged with protecting her. "You wouldn't give me the vote," she said, "so I had to use a rock."
  • In the two years I've spent talking to Kansas Citians about how the pandemic has changed their lives and beliefs, I've heard a lot about the pressures that people want to let go. Even in 2022, that's proving easier said than done. Can a Disney song put us on the right path?
  • In the mid-2000s, Kansas City musician Billy Smith was combing thrift stores when he stumbled upon a random tape in an old-school reel-to-reel tape recorder. What came next was a series of magical coincidences that turned strangers into family.
  • Cinnamon rolls are ubiquitous on Kansas City menus, whether you're at a greasy-spoon diner, high-end bakery, fancy restaurant, coffee shop or deli. They come baked or fried, round or square, iced or plain, for dessert — or served on the side with fried chicken or chili.
  • Lucky Easterwood has been painting murals in Kansas City, Kansas, since 1996. Each of his paintings are intended as a message of optimism for this specific community: "If it was quick to die, it can be quick to rebuild."
  • It's hard to get a record made right now, unless you're Adele. But what, exactly, are the "supply chain issues" keeping vinyl out of indie bands' hands? The experience of Kansas City band Frogpond offers an illuminating look into this complex problem.
  • Musician Ryan Davis — known to fans as Kadesh Flow — didn't just survive a brutal year. The hip-hop performer is climbing up from a low place feeling stronger, more joyful, and more deserving of love than before.
  • Lee Meisel of Leeway Franks has been going hard for 18 months, and he's ready to take a breath. His revived Franksgiving — a casual holiday meal at his small restaurant — will reflect that by embracing togetherness, simplicity, and a heightened appreciation for enough.
  • Until she died this past July, Krazy was a full-time resident at the Kauffman Memorial Garden — protecting beautiful blooms from Brush Creek vermin by night, befriending visitors by day. But the gardener who tamed her remembers that, when Krazy arrived 18 years ago as a young feral cat, "she was just mean."
  • With COVID-19 vaccines imminent for children ages 5-11, I wanted to see how Kansas City kids felt about their shots. But I also heard something more: fears about the disease that's changed their lives, and impatience from long-promised parties, trips and concerts.