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...

Home · Articles · News · Music · Michael Lee Seiler
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Michael Lee Seiler

Rick Coates - May 3rd, 2010
Michael Lee Seiler seeks spirituality through music
By Rick Coates
Boyne City singer/songwriter Michael Lee Seiler sandwiched a career as a manufacturing supervisor between what his heart and soul called him to do.
“Play the guitar,” said Seiler. “I felt the calling as a kid and at first it was about the girls -- the guitarists always got the girls. But then it became more of a spiritual thing.”
Seiler will perform this weekend at the Concord Academy in Mancelona on Friday for the Relay For Life event; Saturday night at Lil Bo’s in Traverse City; and then at the Mother’s Day Gospel Blues Brunch at Forest Dunes Golf Club in Roscommon.
He started playing the guitar in middle school, and like many who grew up in the ’60s and early ’70s, his musical influences were developed through the new FM radio rock format. But for Seiler, he also had his parent’s jukebox that influenced his ear.
“I was drawn in by Crosby, Stills and Nash. I loved that sound,” said Seiler. “But my parents owned a truck stop in northwest Ohio near the turnpike. The musical tastes of the customers coming through the door meant that a lot of Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, Porter Wagner, and Hank Williams were being played. So, that certainly influenced my musical style as well.”

Nearly 40 years later that style has led Seiler to become an accomplished blues, folk, roots and gospel player for solo gigs. He expands his musical repertoire when performing in groups to include, Celtic, mountain, Christian Contemporary and even urban metal.
In 2008 he won the Mid North Michigan Blues Challenge, securing a spot to compete last year at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis. Seiler wowed the audience with his guitar work and sultry vocals at Mr. Handy’s Blues Hall.
“I really loved his set,” said Billy Gibson (IBC judge and blues musician).
“Michael Lee Seiler has a distinctive voice and musical style. I was like wow, out of town, man.”
Seiler decided to return to being a full time professional musician and entertainer after the manufacturing operation he worked at closed a few years ago.
“I worked second or third shift, so I didn’t get a chance to go to open mics. So I just goofed around at home and when I found myself without work, I decided -- what the heck -- why not do what I love,” said Seiler. “It has been a great experience and I am fortunate to have gigs all over.”

In addition to his work as a musician Seiler is also an accomplished dancer and gives private and group dance lessons throughout Northern Michigan. Seiler offers lessons in the Waltz, Foxtrot, East Coast Swing, Cha Cha, Rumba, Salsa, Merrenge and Tango.
“I offer entry level instruction as well as intermediate training. What I like to focus on is the social dancer, the person who is looking to have fun on the dance floor.”
In between performing music, giving dance lessons and guitar lessons, Seiler serves the musical director for his church.
So how did a kid from southwest Ohio end up in Northern Michigan?
“When I was in high school I was in a band, and after high school we performed gigs all over and ended up performing at Boyne Mountain because one of the guys had a place on Lake Charlevoix. Well, I didn’t have money for college and didn’t think there was a career for me as a musician, so I knew I needed to get a real job.”
That real job ended up in Boyne City by a fluke.
“We were up performing over the weekend, it was October - but there was snow on the ground,” said Seiler. “I saw that this place, Circuit Control, was hiring and by Monday I started working for them.”

That was in the late ’70s , and from then through the ’80s, the guitar was basically a hobby for Seiler.
“I decided to start getting serious again in the ‘90s and took lessons from Ron Getz,” said Seiler. I was astounded by his abilities and knowledge. Ron really motivated me.”
So what prompted Seiler to walk away from job security and become a fulltime entertainer?
“I was getting tired of breathing in all the chemicals and knew that I had really never tested the waters 100%,” said Seiler. “I went on a mission trip in 2006 and re-thought my life and decided to go for it. I have not looked back since.”
Michael Lee Seiler is passionate about his music; his solo sets blend a mix of originals from his CD, “My Own Man,” to covers and standards. His guitar work is technical while explorative at the same time.
Seiler will perform this weekend at the Concord Academy in Mancelona on Friday for the Relay For Life event at 11:30 am. He will be joined by several other musicians from the region. On Saturday night his trio, Juke, will play at Lil Bo’s in Traverse City. On Sunday he will return to his solo work at the Mothers Day Gospel Blues Brunch at Forest Dunes Golf Club in Roscommon.

For details on Seiler and to view his summer concert dates go to michaelleeseiler.com.

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