Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Music · Alan Gerber
. . . .

Alan Gerber

Kristi Kates - October 4th, 2010
Alan Gerber Brings on the Boogie
By Kristi Kates
He’s been called eccentric and professional; boogie-woogie and groovy;
and has played at jazz, rock, and blues venues across the continent.
Alan Gerber - who you might recognize from his work with the late ’60s
band Rhinoceros (Gerber wrote songs, sang, and played keyboards for
the group) - is difficult to define, but also difficult to forget,
especially once you’ve seen one of his energetic and distinctive live
performances; and Northern Michigan audiences will get a chance to see
this transformative performer at concerts in Petoskey and Traverse
City this weekend.

Gerber’s work with Rhinoceros gave him not only the opportunity to
showcase his own talent, but also to share the stage with a plethora
of other musicians of the day; while he’s grateful for the
opportunities he got with Rhinoceros, he also says that the “big-time
music scene” wasn’t as fulfilling as he may have anticipated.
“I had the chance to meet & appear with many wonderful musicians,”
Gerber remembers, “B.B. King, John Lee Hooker, Albert King, Van
Morrison, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Janis Joplin, Frank Zappa, Jeff
Beck, and many others. But for the most part, this was not a joyful
time for me. I found all the corporate rock n’ roll hype, the
egomania, and the general overloaded frenzy of it all to be quite
heavy and ultimately disappointing.”
More memorable for Gerber, he says, were his times alone in the band’s
rehearsal space - and the development of the band itself.
“That’s where I composed numerous new songs,” he says, “and when the
group was finally narrowed down to the final seven, I was really
impressed with the depth, power, and potential of the band.”

As the ’70s began, Gerber decided to step away from Rhinoceros and
begin his own solo career, which he says was a virtually painless
“The transition from Rhino to my solo career was easy,” Gerber
explains. “I quit the group, went off on my own, wrote a bunch of new
songs, started doing solo shows, and eventually recorded a solo album
with Shelter Records.”
  That album, simply titled The Alan Gerber Album, would set the
foundation for Gerber’s next five solo discs, plus his current
release, 2009’s Queen of Hearts, which Gerber worked on primarily on
his own.
“Queen Of Hearts was recorded in my personal studio facility, mainly
at home,” he explains, “because of the portable nature of my studio, I
did some of the drums, bass and guitar in other spaces.”
Now miles away from the corporate rock scene, Gerber says he focused
the album on a range of themes, from more personal family matters to
spiritual growth, even throwing in a few humorous topics - and he most
definitely reveled in the time spent in his own studio.
“The sessions were really enjoyable, especially the time frame I had
to experiment, with no rushing because of the time/money studio
factor,” he says. “I could always go for that ‘one last take,’ which I
find to be an important luxury in a recording process.”

  Now taking Queen of Hearts - as well as songs from his other six
albums - on the road, Gerber is snagging rave reviews for his
“stunning vocal interpretations” and “fine musicianship” live.
His one-man show blends his rock, boogie-woogie, and blues influences
with his sometimes zany stage antics to make for a show that keeps
audiences engaged from his first step out on stage to the night’s
final note. Given his prior band experience, fans of course expect the
music to be impressive - but what they might not be aware of are
Gerber’s skills as a comedic performer, as well, which add an extra
element to his already interesting show.
“During my live shows I strive for a mix, with beautiful poetry and
lots of laughs,” Gerber says. “This is exactly what people can expect
at my upcoming Blissfest show along with anything else that just

The Blissfest Concert Series presents Alan Gerber in concert at the
Crooked Tree Arts Center in Petoskey, Saturday Oct. 9 at 8:00 p.m. For
tix and more info, visit www.blissfest.org. He will also be appearing
with Trina Hamlin on Sunday, Oct. 10 at the Loading Dock in TC at 7:30

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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