Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Boyne River Remedy

Kristi Kates - July 11th, 2011
Get The Boyne River Remedy
By Kristi Kates
Much like a good recipe, a good local band is composed of complementary ingredients - in this case, the music and sounds that have influenced each member. This analogy definitely applies to Boyne River Remedy, who founded their group in 2008.
“Josh, Kevin and I got together with several other musicians to write and record a song,” Boyne River Remedy’s Mark Blaauw-Hara says. “We had a great time, and were very happy with how it turned out, so we decided to see how it would go to form a band.”
With a “very informal” process in terms of just who was in said band (“at one point, we had nine members,” Blaauw-Hara chuckles), Boyne River Remedy morphed around who the bandmates knew and who they enjoyed playing music with.
“Our first gig was at Short’s Brewery,” Blaauw-Hara remembers, “and we were thrilled to have a place to play where they’d give us pizza. As we polished our set list and our lineup became more stable, we started playing other places and events in the area - we’ve done everything from house parties to benefits to festivals.”

And now, back to our analogy - those complementary ingredients. In addition to Blaauw-Hara on vocals, guitar, and bass - his influences being both legendary rockers like Springsteen and modern bands like The Hold Steady and Bon Iver - Boyne River Remedy matches up a quintet of members (well, at least at the moment.)
Drew Barr, influenced by the Allman Brothers and U2, mans the keyboards, hand drums and percussion; classic rocker Josh Manthei plays electric guitar (a few of his favorites include the Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix); old-school rap fan Kevin Putman handles the drum duties; and Joni Mitchell fan Jen Schaap strums the acoustic guitar.
“One of the strengths of our band is the diversity of our influences,” Blaauw-Hara says. “We all come from a different starting point, and the synergy of those different points of origin makes us unique.”

A focus for the band is professionalism.
“From the beginning, it’s been about having fun for us,” Blaauw-Hara explains, “but we’re professionals - we show up on time, don’t take long breaks, and tailor our set lists to the crowd and the venue. We do this because we like each other and love playing music; the chemistry is good between us, both musically and personally. And truthfully, I think when people see a band, they want to see a group that’s having a good time and obviously loves what they’re doing. I know that’s what I look for.”
The crowds are already looking for Boyne River Remedy, as evidenced by their busy summer schedule, which will include gigs in Boyne City, on Beaver Island, and in Petoskey, where a weekly show at The Perry Hotel’s popular Noggin Room is proving a popular event.
“We’ve got a regular Thursday night gig at the Noggin this summer,” Blaauw-Hara says. “We’ve written a number of original songs that we like and that we intersperse with our covers, which include a Bon Iver song, an acoustic cover of an Usher song, some Springsteen, and some old-school country, like Johnny Cash, for good measure.”

Another song that fans might find familiar is a local love song - but it’s not to a person, it’s to a town, namely the one reflected in the band’s name.
“Boyne City (I’m in Love with this Town)” is a catchy folk-rocker that’s getting plenty of exposure; the band’s open to seeing what happens with the local favorite, especially since so much has already happened.
“It’s been really surprising how that song has legs,” Blaauw-Hara says, “We adapted it a couple years ago for North Central Michigan College to use it in a video, and then the Boyne City Main Street committee adapted the original recently for use in their entry video for a national competition,” he continues.
“It’s also an adaptable song; we play it from time to time at our shows and change the chorus to reflect where we’re playing,” he says, “for instance, we might howl out “Beaver Island!” or “The Noggin!” or whatever - it’s fun.”
Boyne River Remedy have made keeping up with the band fun, too, with a regularly-updated Facebook band site, t-shirts, and a demo CD of cover tunes available to fans. Their Noggin Room shows are also full of pep and variety.
“We start out with our mellower, more vocally-oriented music so people can eat their dinners, and we steadily build the energy throughout the night,” Blaauw-Hara explains, “and we frequently have guests sit in for a few songs - so there’s no telling exactly what might happen.”

Boyne River Remedy will be performing on Thursday nights from 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm in July and August at the Noggin Room in the Perry Hotel, downtown Petoskey. Additional gigs and more info may be found on the band’s Facebook page.

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