Letters

Letters 05-23-2016

Examine The Priorities Are you disgusted about closing schools, crumbling roads and bridges, and cuts everywhere? Investigate funding priorities of legislators. In 1985 at the request of President Reagan, Grover Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). For 30 years Norquist asked every federal and state candidate and incumbent to sign the pledge to vote against any increase in taxes. The cost of living has risen significantly since 1985; think houses, cars, health care, college, etc...

Make TC A Community For Children Let’s be that town that invests in children actively getting themselves to school in all of our neighborhoods. Let’s be that town that supports active, healthy, ready-to-learn children in all of our neighborhoods...

Where Are Real Christian Politicians? As a practicing Christian, I was very disappointed with the Rev. Dr. William C. Myers statements concerning the current presidential primaries (May 8). Instead of using the opportunity to share the message of Christ, he focused on Old Testament prophecies. Christ gave us a new commandment: to love one another...

Not A Great Plant Pick As outreach specialist for the Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network and a citizen concerned about the health of our region’s natural areas, I was disappointed by the recent “Listen to the Local Experts” feature. When asked for their “best native plant pick,” three of the four garden centers referenced non-native plants including myrtle, which is incredibly invasive...

Truth About Plants Your feature, “listen to the local experts” contains an error that is not helpful for the birds and butterflies that try to live in northwest Michigan. Myrtle is not a native plant. The plant is also known as vinca and periwinkle...

Ask the Real Plant Experts This letter is written to express my serious concern about a recent “Listen To Your Local Experts” article where local nurseries suggested their favorite native plant. Three of the four suggested non-native plants and one suggested is an invasive and cause of serious damage to Michigan native plants in the woods. The article is both sad and alarming...

My Plant Picks In last week’s featured article “Listen to the Local Experts,” I was shocked at the responses from the local “experts” to the question about best native plant pick. Of the four “experts” two were completely wrong and one acknowledged that their pick, gingko tree, was from East Asia, only one responded with an excellent native plant, the serviceberry tree...

NOTE: Thank you to TC-based Eagle Eye Drone Service for the cover photo, taken high over Sixth Street in Traverse City.

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4Play

Ross Boissoneau - November 25th, 2004
Christine McVie – In The Meantime (Koch Records)

If you thought that 20 years between records would augur change, in the case of Christine McVie you’re wrong. The former Fleetwood Mac singer and songwriter’s new solo disc doesn’t sound all that dissimilar to her “Christine McVie” from 1984. Like that disc, “In The Meantime” is pleasant but not exceptional. “Friend” is this album’s “Got A Hold On Me,” a Mac-ish piece of soft pop, empathetically delivered by McVie and her band, which includes her nephew, Dan Perfect, on guitars and backing vocals. Other standout tracks include “So Sincere” and “Easy Come, Easy Go” which has some of those funky clavinet sounds and backing vocals like “You Make Lovin’ Fun.” McVie’s best singing comes on “Liar.” Overall an engaging but less than scintillating excursion.

Incognito – Adventures in Black Sunshine (Narada Jazz)

Guitarist/composer Jean-Paul “Bluey” Maunick has built Incognito into a juggernaut of sorts. Over the group’s 11 albums, Maunick has developed a sound borrowing from ‘70s soul and ‘90s acid jazz, while introducing a bevy of talented singers and utilizing the cream of Britain’s jazz and funk musicians, such as Patrick Clahar, Bud Beadle, Richard Bailey and guests such as former Jam frontman Paul Weller. “Adventures” reunites Bluey with vocalist Maysa Leak, who sings most of the leads. Whoever is singing, Incognito delivers the goods. The punchy horns, synths, and electric piano leads galvanize the songs while Maunick stays mostly in the background. Even on the instrumentals he lets others get the bulk of the solo space, as on “The 25th Chapter,” which features Andy Ross on flute and Nichol Thompson on trombone.

Aria 3 – Metamorphasis (Koch Records)

Producer/pianist Paul Schwartz continues to concoct ambient masterpieces from classical and sacred song. Here he reaches into operatic arias and reimagines them with ambient and electronic treatments with vocal interludes. Whether it works or not certainly depends on your perspective. Classical purists will probably run screaming from the room, while those whose ears are tuned strictly to pop will also be left wanting. Like his previous Aria efforts, or his combinations of sacred and electronic on the State of Grace projects for Windham Hill, Schwartz finds his audience in those looking for new expression and combination of beats, electronics, and classical or sacred works. An arranger rather than composer, Schwartz pushes the envelope with sometimes heady results.

Wallace Roney - Prototype (High Note)

Wallace Roney is one of the most consistently inventive trumpeters currently working on the jazz scene. As it harkens back to such ground-breaking albums as “Bitches Brew” and Herbie Hancock’s “Crossings,” “Prototype” is not music for the faint-hearted. Like his mentor, Miles Davis, Roney is totally unafraid, and the fearlessness shows in his innovative combinations of textures over which he and his fellow horn players assemble their sounds. On the opening “Cyberspace,” for example, he brings in DJ Logic on turntables, while the following “Shadow Dance” includes bass clarinet and trombone. Both are wistful, exploratory songs, which rely on the leader’s trumpet lines to tie together the electronic soundscapes and the more typical jazz rhythms. And Roney’s arrangement of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” is a tour-de-force.
 
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