Letters

Letters 08-25-14

Save America

I read your paper because it’s free and I enjoy the ads. But I struggle through the left wing tripe that fills every page, from political cartoons to the vitriolic pen of Mr. Tuttle. What a shame this beautiful area of the state has such an abundance of Socialist/democrats. Or perhaps the silent majority chooses to stay silent...

Doom, Yet a Cup Half Full

In the news we are told of the civil unrest at Ferguson, Mo; ISIS war radicals in Iraq and Syria; the great corporate tax heist at home. You name it. Trouble, trouble, everywhere. It seems to me the U.S. Congress is partially to blame...

Uncomfortable Questions

defending the positions of the Israelis vs Hamas are far too narrow. Even Mr. Tuttle seems to have failed in looking deeply into the divide. American media is not biased against Israel, nor or are they pro Palestine or Hamas...

The Evolution of Man Revisited

As the expectations of manhood evolve, so too do the rules of love. In Mr. Holmes’s statement [from “Our Therapist Will See Us Now” in last week’s issue] he narrows the key to a successful relationship to the basic need to have your wants and needs understood, and it is on this point I expand...

Home · Articles · News · Music · Familiar Waters... Tom & Chris...
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Familiar Waters... Tom & Chris Kastle play maritime music

Sandra Serra Bradshaw - May 19th, 2005
Just about anyone in the maritime community from here to Chicago and beyond knows nautical musicians Tom and Chris Kastle. The couple recently released their 12th recording, “Familiar Waters,” a collection of maritime shanties from around the world.
The Kastles combine singing, sailing and songwriting in a weave which has become internationally acclaimed for their interpretations of traditional material as well as their original works. They have performed at festivals, concerts, and on radio and television throughout the United States, Canada and Europe.
“In 1985 we started to pursue sailing as a way of life and have experienced, first-hand, the traditions and cultural diversity of life at sea, serving as crew aboard tall ships and other traditional sailing vessels,” Tom says. He was asked by the designer of Chicago’s tall ship “Windy” to sail along as first mate. “Once you sail on a schooner, you just can’t stop,” he says.
“We just got back from a month in the Pacific,” Tom adds. “We visited the waters and shores of Fiji on the way to New Zealand and attended a traditional meke performance as well as visited some undersea creatures off the coral coast of Viti Levu.
In New Zealand the couple performed at the National Maritime Museum in Auckland and were featured at folk clubs on both islands of the country.
“We got to tour quite a bit and saw glaciers, penguins, albatrosses, mountains,” Chris adds of their New Zealand trip. They also sailed aboard a 60’ ketch that once belonged to Errol Flynn, saw the oldest square rigger in the world, and took a trick at the helm aboard a steamship from 1899 on the Wanganui River. This was the couple’s second trip to New Zealand and they plan on going back many more times in the future.

LAKE SOUNDS
It was Ted Kamanski of the Chicago Maritime Society who steered Tom and Chris into discovering maritime songs of the Great Lakes. Kamanski told them about the Walton Collection at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. There they fell in love with the old ballads.
“We truly enjoy our Great Lakes heritage,” Chris says.
“It touches, not just here in our region, but throughout the world,” Tom adds. “In fact, in New Zeeland we found out that it is the only place in the world that still uses the Great Lakes scow (a vessel suited for shallow water). While in New Zealand, the couple played aboard the “Ted Asby,” a replica scow.
The Kastles also serve as directors of the Chicago Maritime Festival. Held in February, the event features musicians from all over the States as well as England, Scotland, France, Poland, and Canada. Participants from Northern Michigan include Tom Kelly of the Inland Seas Education Association, the Michigan Maritime Museum, Traverse City maritime artist Remy Champt, “Friends Good Will” (a new tall ship at South Haven), and the Great Lakes Lighthouse Keepers Association.
This summer, the Kastles will be sailing local waters with the “Inland Seas” and the “Manitou.” Tom on occasion has been captain on the schoolships. They will be aboard May 17-20 and 24-27. Tom will also be captaining aboard some tour boats on the Chicago River and Lake Michigan. In Chicago, the couple is often aboard the “Windy” and the “Windy II”.
On Saturday, May 21 the Kastles will perform at Horizon Books in downtown Traverse City. “The Kastles have been playing here for a number of years,” said Christopher Carlson, advents coordinator at Horizon. “They have tons of information on the Great Lakes maritime history and its songs. It is always great to have them. A lot of people in our region are really interested in the history of the lakes. And that interest makes the Kastles very popular around here.”

For more information on the Kastles and their new CD, “Familiar Waters,” write to PO Box 56474, Chicago, IL 60656-0474, USA; Phone (773) 774-7216; or visit their website at www.kastles.net.



 
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