Legendary Italian composer Ennio Morricone has passed away at the age of 91.

His death has sparked a flurry of tributes all honoring the late musician's prolific output and prodigious talent.

For six decades, Morricone's music has shaped cinema. Often honored as the creator of spaghetti Western drama soundscapes, Morricone composed scores for Quentin Tarantino, Pier Pasolini, Terrence Malik, and many other luminaries.

The Academy Award-winning scorer composed for Édouard Molinaro's La Cage Aux Folles, Wolfgang Peterson's In the Line of Fire, Tarantino's The Hateful Eight, and hundreds more.

But he is perhaps best known for his work crafting soundscapes for Sergio Leone's Western films. Defined by his use of uncanny, collage-like sounds—often created by non-traditional objects—Leone's work not only created symphonic wonders: It created worlds.

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Culture News

Kanye West's Presidential Run Is Great News for Donald Trump

"Better late than never" may not apply in this case...

On Saturday, in a strange celebration of Independence Day, rapper, producer, and sneaker mogul Kanye West announced his intention to run for president in 2020.

As in, this year. Right now.

The announcement quickly prompeted messages of support from Kanye's wife, prison reform advocate Kim Kardashian West, as well as from billionaire weirdo/Grimes baby daddy Elon Musk.

Of course, this news comes well past the filing deadline for independent candidates in several major states—which means that unless a political party randomly decides to nominate him, Kanye's name won't appear on those ballots. As deadlines in other states approach—with little apparent effort to gather the petition signatures required—Kanye is officially joining the long, proud history of vanity presidential campaigns. Unfortunately, that's a lot more dangerous than it sounds.

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Culture News

White Supremacy and Erasing American History: John Wayne's Son Pushes Back Against Airport Name Change

Democratic politicians are pushing to rename John Wayne Airport after "White Supremacy" Playboy interview resurfaces

In Orange County this week, a group of Democratic politicians has been pushing to remove John Wayne's name as well as a 9-foot statue of the actor from John Wayne Airport, but John Wayne's son is pushing back.

America has always struggled to reckon with the crimes of its past. While Germany has made a national project out of remembering the evils of the Nazi regime, America prefers to either deny that our nation's crimes were as bad as they sound, or to shrug them off as too long ago to be worthy of attention.

Yet somehow, in that hazy distant past, beyond the realm of clear facts or moral concern, we manage to idolize and identify with a few sainted figures—like the slave-owning founders who enshrined the national values of liberty and justice for all (as long as you have some very strange definitions of the words "liberty," "justice," and "all").

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