Letters

Letters 07-21-2014

Disheartened

While observing Fox News, it was disheartening to see what their viewers were subjected to. It seems the Republicans’ far right wing extremists are conveying their idealistic visions against various nationalities, social diversities or political beliefs with an absence of emotion concerning women’s health issues, children’s rights, voter suppression, Seniors, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid...

Things That Matter

All of us in small towns and large not only have the right to speak on behalf of our neighbors and ourselves, we have the duty and responsibility to do so -- and 238 years ago, we made a clear Declaration to do just that...

An Anecdote Driven Mind

So, is Thomas Kachadurian now the Northern Express’ official resident ranter? His recent factfree, hard-hearted column suggests it. While others complain about the poor condition of Michigan’s roads and highways, he rants against those we employ to fix them...

No On Prop 1

Are we being conned? Are those urging us to say “yes” to supposedly ”revenue neutral” ballot proposal 1 on August 5 telling us all the pertinent facts? Proposal 1 would eliminate the personal property tax businesses pay to local governments, replacing its revenue with a share of Michigan’s 6 percent use tax paid by us all on out-of-state purchases, hotel accommodations, some equipment rentals, and telecommunications...

Fix VA Tragedy

The problems within the Veterans Administration identified under former President Bush continue to hinder the delivery of quality health care to the influx of physically wounded and emotionally damaged young men and women...

Women Take Note

I find an interesting link between the Supreme Court Hobby Lobby and the crisis on the southern border. Angry protesters shout at children to go home. These children are scared, tired, hungry and thirsty, sent to US prisons awaiting deportation to a country where they may very likely be killed...


Home · Articles · News · Music · Folk, Celtic and More at Manitou
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Folk, Celtic and More at Manitou

Ross Boissoneau - June 2nd, 2014  

The Manitou Music Festival might be one of the region’s best-kept secrets. Its musical smorgasbord brings together folk, blues, traditional favorites, and Celtic music all over Glen Arbor.

This year’s festival includes familiar fare like Trina Hamilton and Mulebone, local favorites the Northport Community Band and Billy Strings & Don Julin, and Irish bands Girsa and Full Set, among others.

“It’s kind of a casual thing,” said Jack Conners, who took over the festival last year. A veteran musical engineer and musician, Conners also is on staff at Interlochen Public Radio and Northwestern Michigan College.

“People can walk in knowing there’s going to be something [nearly] every Sunday and Wednesday,” he said. “It’s nice to have a $15 ticket, and 18 and under are free. It encourages people to bring their kids out.”

Conners says securing the artists depends on who is touring and available. He works with local promoter/agent Seamus Shinners to book the acts. If the talent is a good fit musically and financially, they book it.

“That’s where Seamus comes in,” Conners said. “He knows the performers and who’s touring. We have to find someone at a reasonable cost.”

The rootsy acoustic blues of Mulebone, which is Hugh Pool on guitar and vocals and John Ragusa on flutes, whistles, cornet, and vocals, always draws a crowd. The duo has been a mainstay of the festival for the past several years.

Pool says the audience’s appreciation of the group goes both ways.

“We’ve been treated really well,” he said. “There’s great energy. There have been no bad gigs.”

What started out as a single show several years ago has become a series of concerts across the region and across the state.

Pool gives credit to Shinners and the Manitou Music Festival.

“Two shows became three became five became nine. Now it’s two weeks, 12 shows in Michigan,” Pool said. “We just jumped on the Seamus bandwagon.”

Pool said he values the long-term relationship he’s had with the festival.

“It’s not that often you can go back year after year,” he said. “Manitou has become the end of our Michigan tour. Who wouldn’t want to go there?”

THE COMPLETE 2014 SCHEDULE:

Northport Community Band 7pm July 3, the old school house, Glen Arbor (free)

The Moxie Strings and percussionist Fritz Mc- Girr, 7pm July 13, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Dune Climb on M-109 (free)

Mulebone, 8pm July 20, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

Guitarist Ronald Radford, 7pm July 24, the Homestead Resort, Glen Arbor

The Wilenes, 8pm July 27, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

Full Set, 8pm July 30, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

Billy Strings & Don Julin, 8pm Aug. 3, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

Girsa, 8pm Aug. 6, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

Peter, Paul and Mary Remembered, 8pm Aug. 10, Studio Stage at Lake Street Studio, Glen Arbor

The Summer Singers, 7pm Aug. 12, Glen Lake Community Church (free)

Trina Hamlin & Annie Gallup, 8pm Aug. 13, The Leelanau School, Glen Arbor

For tickets, rain locations and additional details, visit glenarborart.org and click on “Manitou Music Festival.”

MANITOU MUSIC FESTIVAL A Brief History

The Manitou Music Festival actually began under another name and a different genre altogether.

Music Around the Lakes was the brainchild of Crispin Campbell of Interlochen and the late Richard Luby of North Carolina. The two classical musicians started a chamber music series more than 20 years ago in various churches and town halls.

As it morphed over the years, it took on a new name and broadened its appeal.

From 2007 to 2013, Harry Fried helmed the series, now renamed the Manitou Music Festival, building on the tradition and incorporating new styles into the mix. He also oversaw improvements in the stage area behind Lake Street Studios, upgrades in sound and lighting, and a new stage monitoring system.

After Fried retired last year, Jack Conners took over. A veteran musical engineer and musician, Conners also is on staff at Interlochen Public Radio and Northwestern Michigan College.

Conners said the mix of genres, the carefree summer attitude of the audiences, and the relative affordability of the shows makes for a formula that “works.”

“The festival has developed a formula that works over the years,” he said.

 
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