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Every January, I attend globalFEST at a New York City nightclub and see some of the most fantastic music I'll experience all year. Now, given the pandemic's challenges and the hardening of international borders, NPR Music and globalFEST moved the 2021 edition from the nightclub to your screen of choice and shared the festival with the world. We called it Tiny Desk Meets globalFEST.

This month in Romancelandia, true love and a happy ever after are possible at any age. Whether it's a teenager's first love, a 50-year-old's forever love, or somewhere in the middle, these three outstanding novels show it's never too early — or too late — for that HEA.

Israelis are visiting Dubai in the tens of thousands. Where in the past, they could only arrive as undercover spies, competitive athletes or foreign passport holders, now they are loud and proud, running into the arms of their new Middle Eastern friend, the oil-rich United Arab Emirates.

Every January, I attend globalFEST at a New York City nightclub and see some of the most fantastic music I'll experience all year. Now, given the pandemic's challenges and the hardening of international borders, NPR Music and globalFEST moved the 2021 edition from the nightclub to your screen of choice and shared the festival with the world. We called it Tiny Desk Meets globalFEST.

The great South African trombonist and composer Jonas Gwangwa, who was an ambassador for his country's music around the globe and an advocate against apartheid at home, died today. Gwangwa's death was announced in a statement published on the web site of the presidency of the Republic of South Africa. He was 83 years old.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Rap duo Salt-N-Pepa were hit machines in the 1980s and '90s with huge songs like "Let's Talk About Sex," their collaboration with En Vogue, "Whatta Man," and "Push It."

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "PUSH IT")

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And finally, today, you might have noticed that Mexican directors have recently enjoyed much success at the Academy Awards. Alfonso Cuaron won Oscars for directing "Gravity" in 2014 and again in 2019 for "Roma."

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

ALFONSO CUARON: Muchas gracias, Mexico.

Muchas gracias. Gracias, gracias.

MARTIN: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu won in 2015 for directing "Birdman."

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

ALEJANDRO GONZALEZ INARRITU: (Speaking Spanish). Thank you very much.

(CHEERING)

Mexican film directors have enjoyed success at the Academy Awards in recent years. Alfonso Cuarón won an Oscar for directing Gravity in 2014, and for Roma in 2019. Alejandro González Iñárritu won one in 2015 for directing Birdman and the following year for The Revenant. And Guillermo del Toro won his Oscar for directing The Shape of Water in 2018. Now, the "Tres Amigos," as they're known, may welcome uno más: up-and-coming filmmaker Fernando Frías de la Parra.

Joe Biden is only the second Catholic president of the United States. He's also a supporter of abortion rights — a position at odds with official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

For some Catholic activists, like Marjorie Dannenfelser, Biden's high-profile example of a Catholic who supports abortion rights is troubling.

"It's a negative example of a deep and important moral issue that is being debated in this country," she said.

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