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...

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4Play: The Cars, Stevie Nicks, Matthew Morrison, Jennifer Lopez

Kristi Kates - May 9th, 2011
The Cars - Move Like This - Hear Music
Back after nearly a quarter-century out of the loop as a band, ‘80s hipsters The Cars reconfigure their jittery, poppy brand of new wave into a slightly more modernized set that’s still just retro enough to bring back their old fans while most likely snagging a few new ones, as well. The synths, jagged guitars, and distinctive Ric Ocasek vocals are all present and ready to be called to order within a series of well-constructed pop songs reminiscent of Devo, Talking Heads, and, well, The Cars of yesteryear. “Sad Song” debuts first with its accompanying Rene-Magritte-meets-the-’80s video; production by Jacknife Lee adds consistancy.
 


Stevie Nicks - In Your Dreams - Reprise
Written and tracked at Nicks’ own home in L.A. with co-production by Alanis Morrisette cohort Glen Ballard and Eurythmic Dave Stewart, Nicks’ latest is notable in that her voice and songwriting are perhaps the only two consistent elements that pull all of these tracks together to make a recognizable Stevie Nicks album. It’s interesting and admirable that at this point in her career, Nicks chose to do quite a bit of sound experimenting, and it works for the most part, from the synths on “Everybody Loves You” to the wall of guitars on “Ghosts Are Gone,” the string-graced “Italian Summer,” and the Americana-seasoned “Cheaper Than Free.”
 


Matthew Morrison - Matthew Morrison - Island
Gleeksters will recognize the charismatic Morrison from his role as teacher Will on the hugely popular TV series Glee. Others, however, may not find this album compelling enough to further seek out the actor/singer (Morrison actually had a ton of Broadway experience before being cast on the television show.) While Morrison has a pleasant enough singing voice, and collaborated with the likes of producer Espionage and guest performers Gwyneth Paltrow and Elton John, his own performances are somewhat tepid; lead single “Summer Rain” sets the vanilla tone by being reminiscent of a late-night infomercial “Romantic Pop Hits” album.
 

Jennifer Lopez - Love? - Island
J-Lo may be a multi-tasking performer, with her singing, acting, producer, fashionista, and American Idol judge roles all woven together; but perhaps she’s trying to focus on too many things at once to the detriment of some. Lopez’ latest album, while sure to be a sensation at the clubs, simply doesn’t have enough weight to make much of an impression elsewhere, nor are the tracks forward enough to sit beside more modern artists, and even the heavy production can’t disguise her thin voice. “On the Floor” and “Hypnotico” are, again, at least suitable for the dance floor, but the rest are tracks that will likely be forgotten a year from now.
 
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