Letters

Letters 05-02-2016

Facts About Trails I would like to correct some misinformation provided in Kristi Kates’ article about the Shore-to-Shore Trail in your April 18 issue. The Shore-to-Shore Trail is not the longest continuous trail in the Lower Peninsula. That honor belongs to the North Country Trail (NCT), which stretches for over 400 miles in the Lower Peninsula. In fact, 100 miles of the NCT is within a 30-minute drive of Traverse City, and is maintained by the Grand Traverse Hiking Club...

North Korea Is Bluffing I eagerly read Jack Segal’s columns and attend his lectures whenever possible. However, I think his April 24th column falls into an all too common trap. He casually refers to a nuclear-armed North Korea when there is no proof whatever that North Korea has any such weapons. Sure, they have set off some underground explosions but so what? Tonga could do that. Every nuclear-armed country on Earth has carried out at least one aboveground test, just to prove they could do it if for no other reason. All we have is North Korea’s word for their supposed capabilities, which is no proof at all...

Double Dipping? In Greg Shy’s recent letter, he indicated that his Social Security benefit was being unfairly reduced simply due to the fact that he worked for the government. Somehow I think something is missing here. As I read it this law is only for those who worked for the government and are getting a pension from us generous taxpayers. Now Greg wants his pension and he also wants a full measure of Social Security benefits even though he did not pay into Social Security...

Critical Thinking Needed Our media gives ample coverage to some presidential candidates calling each other a liar and a sleaze bag. While entertaining to some, this certainly should lower one’s respect for either candidate. This race to the bottom comes as no surprise given their lack of respect for the rigors of critical thinking. The world’s esteemed scientists take great steps to preserve the integrity of their findings. Not only are their findings peer reviewed by fellow experts in their specialty, whenever possible the findings are cross-checked by independent studies...

Home · Articles · News · Music · Dick Siegel
. . . .

Dick Siegel

Kristi Kates - January 31st, 2011
Petoskey Welcomes Dick Siegel
By Kristi Kates
Michigan transplant Dick Siegel, born in New Jersey but now firmly a
part of the Detroit music scene, has become well-known over the years
for his quirky lyrics, singer-songwriter styling, and his unique
fusion of roots, folk, and jazz.
You may have heard him on NPR (he’s made stops most prominently on
segments All Things Considered and Mountain Stage), heard about his
latest album, Fighting for King George, or seen him perform live. And
now Northern Michiganders will have a chance to see Siegel live on
stage in Petoskey with his trio, the Brandos, performing at the
Crooked Tree Arts Center, Saturday, Feb. 5.

TUNING AND TEACHING
Given Siegel’s long career to date - he’s been in the music business
for over 25 years - one might assume he’d be slowing down by now. But
that’s not in the cards for this veteran performer.
“Lately, I’ve been working hard playing guitar, writing songs, finding
inspiration in the crazy and profound goings-on of life day to day,
and putting it to music,” Siegel says. “And I’m putting together a
live album culled from a year and a half of Dick Siegel and the
Brandos performances. We’re also spending time in the studio, playing
like we do on stage, honing our ability to bring the excitement of the
live show into the controlled studio environment. The studio album
will be all new material; the live album will be stocked with the best
of old and new from our shows.”
In addition to his own musical endeavors, Siegel says, he’s also
“wearing an educator’s hat,” with his visiting professorship at the
University of Michigan.
“I’m teaching a songwriting course,” he explains, “it’s called ‘The
Singing Out of Our Minds Songwriting Workshop.’ It’s very cool, and I
love doing it - shepherding the talents of some very talented people,
getting into songs work, how to make them better, and immersing
ourselves in the great roots songs that so much of contemporary
songwriting spring from.”
BACK TO RETRO
When asked what of today’s ‘contemporary songwriting’ Siegel, himself,
is inspired by, he actually steps back far more than looking toward
the future, referring mostly to the early music he’s been sharing with
his U of M class.
“The Carter Family, Stephen Foster, Muddy Waters, Willie Dixon, Irving
Berlin,” he begins, “I’m inspired by Miles Davis’ hypnotically melodic
music. And I’m inspired by the music that emerges when I get together
to rehearse with my gifted trio-mates, guitarist Brian Delaney and
upright bassist Dave Roof.”
Locally, he’s a fan of May Erlewine, Seth Bernard, Micah Middaugh of
Breathe Owl Breath, Erin Zindle of The Ragbirds, and the Ann Arbor
band My Dear Disco - and he’s got plenty of fans of his own, given the
turnout at his live shows.
“Our shows have been a blast,” Siegel enthuses, “we have kind of a
jazz approach to my songs in that we’re always improvising, making new
discoveries. We push ourselves. It keeps the music exciting for us and
for our audiences, making that connection.”
For Siegel’s Petoskey show with the Brandos, he says he’ll be “singing
his heart out.”
“The trio will be shooting off musical sparks,” he promises,
“masterful upright bass, virtuoso guitar via Dave and Brian. We’ll
solve a few of life’s mysteries, give people something to laugh about,
and leave them with a song to sing themselves home with.”

Dick Siegel and the Brandos will be performing at the Crooked Tree
Arts Center in Petoskey at 8:00 p.m. on February 5, as presented by
the Blissfest Music Organization. For tickets and info, visit
www.blissfest.org or call 231-348-7047. For more info on Siegel and
his band, visit www.dicksiegel.com.

 
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