Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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The loopy sounds of Keller Williams

Rick Coates - October 12th, 2009
The Loopy Sounds of Keller Williams
By Rick Coates 10/12/09

In the world of “cease and desist” that we live in it is surprising that Keller Williams the nationwide realtor hasn’t sent Keller Williams the nationwide musician a letter asking him to cease and desist from using his/their name. Certainly some people have shown up to a Keller Williams concert thinking they might be going to a real estate seminar and surely some fans of Keller Williams the musician have walked into one of the real estate offices of the same name thinking they may catch the musician at his desk.
Oh you would be surprised about these cease and desist letters. Bill Wyman one of the top music journalists of today received such a letter a few years back from Bill Wyman the bass player for the Rolling Stones. Wyman the journalist was asked to change his name by Wyman the bass player. Funny thing Bill Wyman the journalist was born with that name and Bill Wyman the bass player was actually born Bill Perks. Well the judge laughed that one out of court.
But for diehard fans of the “One Man Jam Band” there is no confusion between the two Keller Williams, though both have a real estate connection. One sells it the other travels it. Keller Williams, “music’s mad-scientist” has been crisscrossing the country for the past 20 years and will make a stop in Northern Michigan this Thursday with a performance at the City Opera House. He is touring in support of his current CD, *Odd,* released in August.

ONCE A WEEK
“I did something different, at least different from my perspective with this CD,” said Williams. “I released one track from the CD each week on my website through something I called ‘Once a Week Freek.’ I started this 13 weeks before the hard copy of the CD was released. Some weeks I released the song for free or I put out a free video.”
What was the concept behind that?
“Well the industry has changed so much that I think you have to be innovative in your marketing approach to your music. I am always looking for unique and fresh ways to present my music,” said Williams. “People seemed to like it as well.”
Williams started playing music at an early age.
“I guess like most I started on pots and pans with a wooden spoon and eventually took up the piano,” said Williams. “It was around the age of 12 that I started playing the guitar.”
Williams has made a name for himself as a “master at live looping.” Looping is the musical technique of repeating a small sample continually. Looping in the studio, while challenging, is not as difficult as doing live.
“I struggled with it at first, as I started experimenting with it around 1997,” said Williams. “But I was using the wrong equipment at first. Then I was opening for Victor Wooten (bass player for Bella Fleck and The Flecktones) and he is a master looper and I learned up front and close how to do it with the right equipment.”

BACK WITH A BAND
Another signature of a Williams live show is no two sets are identical.
“I work at that. I even check the set list I used the last time I played the venue or the city so it is not the same,” said Williams. “A lot of times the songs I perform or record choose me. I get a song in my head and I want to play it or perform it.”
While Williams made a name for himself as a solo artist, for the past two years he has been touring with a band. Originally named the WMDs the band is now known as Keller Williams with Mosely, Droll and Sipe. The four piece band is made up of Williams on rhythm guitar, Keith Mosely (String Cheese Incident) on bass, Jeff Sipe on drums and Gibb Droll on lead guitar. So is Williams happy to return to his one man act?
“I like the dynamic of both. There is a certain energy you get when performing with a band. You have others on stage challenging you,” said Williams. “It was a lot of fun and now what I am trying to do is capture that same sort of energy in my solo show.”

Anyone who has ever been to a Keller Williams solo show knows that the barefoot performer never lacks any energy. To learn more about Williams and to hear samples of his current release check out kellerwilliams.net. Tickets to his upcoming show at the City Opera House, October 15 may be purchased online at porterhouseproductions.com or by calling 800-836-0717.

 
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