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May 2011

The Cars Get Great Mileage

the Cars Move Like This

The comeback business can be mighty tricky. It’s mighty easy to fall prey to desperation and self-consciousness. Does an artist strive for au courant credibility? Is it wiser to stick with a tried-and-true approach? Is there a sweet spot between extremes? Ultimately, any or all of those strategies can work. Maybe the answer is to choose a route and go for it. No dillydallying!

Seems like that’s what the Cars have done, and it’s why their first album in 24 years, Move Like This, is such a delight. The Boston group, which surged up the charts regularly over the course of a decade (beginning with 1978’s “My Best Friend’s Girl”) with a distinctly modern, streamlined sound, don’t fuss with the formula that made them famous.

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A Rwandan Coffee Worthy of Attention

Rwanda Gakenke Fair Trade Certified™

The coffees from Rwanda have been winning awards and capturing the attention of coffee enthusiasts around the world. We feel our latest Starbucks Reserve™ coffee, Rwanda Gakenke Fair Trade Certified™, is especially worthy of our attention – and yours too.

Gakenke is the district located in the central highlands of Rwanda’s Northern Province. The cooperative that provided this coffee is comprised of roughly 4,400 small holder farms. In that mix are about 300 women who contributed. It’s exciting to see more women smallholders emerging in a landscape traditionally held by men. It feels good knowing this coffee is a collaborative effort shared by community.

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A Midsummer’s Night with the Fleet Foxes

Fleet Foxes

I have a fond reverie of one midsummer’s night not too long ago. It was on of one of my finest-yet-infrequent camping trips. It spent in the company of the Fleet Foxes on a brief sojourn during the recording of their latest album. The memory is somewhat cloudy, but then clears off into bright sunshine, much like the Pacific Northwest milieu from which the band originates.

There were seven of us as I recall: Robin, Skyler, Casey, Josh, Christian, Morgan and myself. It seemed we spent a lot of time listening to Fairport Convention and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young albums on a single passed-around iPod. Played some UNO. Roasted strips of salmon over the campfire.

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The Original Three Region Blend is Back!

Three Region Blend

Starbucks Tribute Blend™ is a great blend of coffees. The aged Sumatra component, a cornerstone of our most popular offerings, mixes beautifully with other coffees from Latin America and Africa/Arabia to make a great cup.

You may be asking yourself though – which Starbucks blend was the first to venture down the delicious path of combining coffees from all three growing regions: Latin America, Africa/Arabia and Asia/Pacific? Here’s a hint. It wasn’t our Starbucks Tribute Blend™.

Instead, it’s the aptly named Three Region Blend that owns the coveted OTRB (Original Three Region Blend) title from Starbucks. It’s a wonderful blend of coffees from East Africa, Central America and Papua New Guinea with lush floral and herbal notes.

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Recycling Bins in British Columbia

Starbucks recycling bins in British Columbia

If you’ve visited one of our company-owned stores in British Columbia lately, hopefully you’ve seen our new front of store recycling containers!

We were able to place containers in almost all stores, although unfortunately there were a few in towns that still don’t have recycling service for businesses. Also, some of our landlords do not provide recycling service to their buildings, so stores in those locations can’t recycle. Starbucks is the first restaurant to accept disposable coffee cups for recycling in B.C., and it’s a big step towards meeting our goal to have recycling bins in all our stores by 2015.

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Seattle: 700 Neighbors Spruced Up Schools and Parks

Seattle Month of Service community event

For the final event of the Starbucks Global Month of Service, partners and community members from Seattle and surrounding communities joined together to benefit the Mount Baker neighborhood. The rain stayed away and some sun came through, helping to fuel the excitement of the volunteers.

Through the help of over 700 partners, customers and community members, projects were completed at John Muir Elementary School, Franklin High School, Cheasty Greenspace, Mount Baker Park and Estelle Street P-Patch.

Were you there? Tell us your favorite part!

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Booker T. Gets Back to Roots

Booker T. Jones

There’s a grand tradition of distinguished veterans and younger admirers pairing up to make inspired music that’s reflected in the new album from soul icon Booker T. Jones of MG’s fame.

The Road from Memphis (now available at Starbucks) finds the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer teamed with powerhouse Philly hip-hoppers the Roots, who complement Booker T.’s sinewy organ lines a la the MG’s on ‘60s instrumental grooves like “Time Is Tight” and “Hang ‘em High.” Meanwhile, guest vocalists Sharon Jones, Yim Yames from My Morning Jacket, Matt Berninger from the National and Lou Reed add diversity and flair to the mix.

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