Letters

Letters 12-22-2014

Affordable Housing Alternatives In Scott Hardy’s opinion piece in the December 15 edition, he offered six concrete ideas to address the ongoing community discussion about increasing affordable in-town housing in Traverse City.

Powerful Homeless Event Homelessness is far more complex than we thought. “Everyone Has a Story—Sit and Share Our Bench” was a wondrous performance Sunday, December 7, that opened my eyes to a wide range of experiences with homelessness, bridging the gap between “us and them.”

Long-Lasting Effects of Measles I understand several cases of measles have occurred in Traverse City. I also became aware that in Michigan, persons are three times less likely to be immunized.

Changing The Electoral College Republicans are thinking about changing how Michigan allocates Electoral College votes. Michigan, like all but two states, gives all of its electoral votes to the statewide winner of the popular vote.

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Monday, March 14, 2011

4Play: James Blake, The Script, Edwyn Collins, The Dodos

Music Kristi Kates James Blake - James Blake - Universal
Blake’s unique, downtrodden take on dubstep may not be for everyone - or
at least, not for those who don’t appreciate a certain level of
pensiveness - but his skills at melding quietude with beats can’t be
denied. The studied awkwardness of the piano on “Give Me My Month,” the
street corner loneliness and abandoned penny organ sounds of
“Measurements,” the ’80s detachment of “Lindisfarne II,” and the clicky
apathy of “The Wilhelm Scream” never pick up the pace to take the listener
anywhere at all, but that unmoving sadness is part of what makes this
album succeed - as long as the listener is in a very s
 
Monday, March 7, 2011

Sean Ryan

Music Kristi Kates Petoskey’s Own Irish Troubadour Sean Ryan
By Kristi Kates
Anyone who has spent any time at all vacationing Up North has likely at least heard of local performer Sean Ryan.
Ryan, who has spent the better part of the last two decades as a regular at Petoskey’s Noggin Room in the Perry Hotel, is a big part of many folks’ summer memories - carefully walking down the stone steps to the subterranean Noggin Room; settling in at dark wood tables set with icy drinks and baskets of popcorn; laughter and singalongs floating through the air to compliment Ryan’s own Irish-inflected folk singing; good-natured banter and deft guitar work.
It’s a story that started in Ireland, and ends - happily, thank you - in Petoskey.
 
Monday, March 7, 2011

St. Patrick‘s Day celebrations

Music Rick Coates St. Patrick’s Celebrations Sweep the North
By Rick Coates
You don’t have to go far to ‘get your Irish on’ this coming week: St.
Patrick’s themed events will take place across the region. Here are some
of the highlights:

31st Annual Traverse City Ancient Order of Hibernians St. Patrick’s Parade
Saturday, March 12

The festivities kick off with pre-parade activities at North Peak Brewery
starting at noon with the announcement of the Irish Queen, Grand Marshall,
Irish Prince and Princesses and the Irish Lord Mayor.
The parade will commence at 1:30 p.m. with pre-staging starting at 1 p.m.
on North Hall Street. The parade route goes down Front Street to Pine to
State, Park  and Front streets and ending on North Hall.
Post parade activities will include dancing and Irish music by the Wild
Sullys at North Peak Brewery starting at 2:30 p.m. All activities are open
to the public. Anyone interested in participating in the parade should
contact Hibernian president Todd McCall at 231-715-6265.
 
Monday, March 7, 2011

O‘Rourke & Zeitler‘s Irish afternoon

Music Kristi Kates ’Rourke and Zeitler’s Irish Afternoon
By Kristi Kates
Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, activist, purveyor of roots Americana and folk music.
These are all worthy subtitles given to not one, but two performers, namely Siusan O’Rourke and Zig Zeitler, the talented folk music couple who will be performing “An Afternoon of Irish Music” at Boyne City’s BAC (Boyne Arts Collective) as part of local St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.
 
Monday, March 7, 2011

Six Irish modern rockers

Music Kristi Kates Six Irish Modern Rockers
By Kristi Kates
Most modern rock fans are pretty familiar with great Irish bands like U2,
Snow Patrol, The Pogues, The Frames, and The Cranberries.
 
Monday, March 7, 2011

4Play: Cake, Soundgarden, Wire, The Go! Team

Music Kristi Kates Cake - Showroom of Compassion - Upbeat/ILG
Cake’s latest album - their first since 2004 - sounds pretty much like… their last album in 2004. This isn’t a bad thing. It just means that Cake still pretty much sounds like Cake, complete with horns, punchy guitars, callback harmonies, and John McCrea’s oft-acerbic, wry vocal stylings. There’s nothing particularly edgy here, but the songs are definitely catchy, from the “Never There”-reminiscent “Sick of You,” “Federal Funding,” and “Got to Move” to their left-field cover of Frank Sinatra’s “What’s Now is Now” to the country-inflected “Bound Away.” Groundbreaking, no - entertaining, yes.
 
Monday, February 28, 2011

Chanticleer

Music Kristi Kates Chanticleer: An Orchestra of Voices
By Kristi Kates
First, a little background. Chanticleer, the internationally-renowned singing group, has actually been around since 1978. Founded by musicology grad student Louis Botto - who found it unusual that much of the repertoire he was studying wasn’t actually being performed - the group was initially pulled from members of choirs in which Botto sang (namely the San Francisco Symphony Chorus and the Grace Cathedral Choir), and began as a nine-member endeavor.
They named themselves after Chanticleer, the singing rooster in one of Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales - and the group debuted before a capacity audience at San Fran’s historic Old Mission Dolores. With their very first show a smash success, the nonet agreed to continue on, and a singing tradition was born.
 
Monday, February 28, 2011

MilkDrive

Music Kristi Kates MilkDrive Shakes Up the Austin Music Scene
By Kristi Kates
The sounds of Austin, Texas resonate in Northern Michigan this weekend
with a band that knows how to fiddle around.
Comprised of Brian Beken, Noah Jeffries, and Dennis Ludiker (all who play
guitar, mandolin, and fiddle) and Matt Mefford on bass, Austin-based
alt-folk band MilkDrive first found its feet in Idaho, the homeland of
main songwriter Jeffries, who grew up playing music with his family’s
bluegrass/gospel band.
 
Monday, February 28, 2011

Miss Tess

Music Kristi Kates Miss Tess’ leads the Retro Parade
By Kristi Kates
Being compared to the likes of both Ella Fitzgerald and Madeleine Peyroux - and being dubbed Outstanding Folk Artist of the Year by the Boston Music Awards - is no small feat.
But Boston-launched, New York-based singer-songwriter Miss Tess, who will be appearing in Traverse City at the InsideOut Gallery, on March 2, is no small-minded musician, pushing and pulling her talents through a wide range of projects but always keeping her own musical sensibilities inta
 
Monday, February 28, 2011

St. Patrick‘s Day

Music Rick Coates St. Practice Day:: Raise a toast with The Young Dubliners, Shrub and 12 Year Reunion
By Rick Coates 
Almost 20 years ago Guinness started The Great Guinness Toast, nicknamed 
“St. Practice Day,” where on the third Friday of February Guinness
drinkers gather at pubs to raise a toast to set a Guinness Book of World
Records for the largest simultaneous toast. Each year a new record has
been set. The St. Practice Day concept has expanded beyond what Guinness
originally intended with clubs putting their own spin on it.
Ground Zero Nightclub in Traverse City will launch its first-ever St.
Practice Day on Friday March 4 with three bands, The Young Dubliners,
Shrub and 12-Year Reunion. Tickets are only $10 in advance and doors open
at 8 p.m.
 
Monday, February 28, 2011

4Play: Ron Sexsmith, Adele, The Jayhawks, Duffy

Music Kristi Kates Ron Sexsmith - Long Player, Late Bloomer - Thirty Tigers
Long underrated and often (unfortunately) unnoticed by U.S. audiences,
Canadian singer-songwriter Sexsmith nonetheless counts among his fans
everyone from Coldplay’s Chris Martin to Elvis Costello. Opening track
“Get in Line” is actually instantly reminiscent of Elvis Costello, right
down to the bobs and warbles at the end of the verse lines; other
highlights include “No Help at All” (on which he sounds a little like
Bruce Hornsby) and “Everytime I Follow,” with its off-beat acoustic and
heavier rhythms. This album full of quiet, stealthy hits closes with
“Nowadays,” prettily plucked on guitar and seasoned faintly with pedal
steel in the background.
 
Monday, February 21, 2011

Bye, Bye winter blues

Music Kristi Kates Bye Bye, Winter Blues Petoskey’s Got the Cure
By Kristi Kates
“It all started because our marketing consultant told us we were doing
well in the summer, but that we needed to get more people here in the
winter,” explains Petoskey Downtown Director Becky Goodman, “there had
been nothing in the past here in the winter, or for the locals.”
 
Monday, February 21, 2011

4Play: Jamiroquai, Ice Cube, Cee-Lo Green, Ne-Yo

Music Kristi Kates Jamiroquai - Rock Dust Light Star - Mercury UK
Frontman Jay Kay and crew’s first album in over five years, Jamiroquai’s latest set was recorded half in the UK and half in Thailand, giving this set both a grounded and a more exotic side. First single “Blue Skies” sticks close to England - reminiscent, even, of the best possibilities of England’s boy band roster with its pop sensibilities - while other tracks show more depth. The lighter side continues on tracks like the zippy “Lifeline” and “Two Completely Different Things,” while the heavier grooves surface on songs like “White Knuckle Ride,” the bass-y “All Good in the Hood,” and the cool funk-reggae anti-drug anthem “Hey Floyd.”

 
Monday, February 14, 2011

4Play: AMOS LEE, THE DECEMERISTS, BIGHT EYES, COLD WAR KIDS

Music Kristi Kates Amos Lee - Mission Bell - Blue Note
Melding the vocal stylings of Bill Withers and James Taylor together into a soulful American roots-music mix, Lee’s latest (his fourth album) includes a wide range of guest musicians and amps up his arranging skills with more complexity than previous releases. He brings Lucinda Williams in for a duet on “Clear Blue Eyes” to great effect, while Willie Nelson steps in on a secondary version of Lee’s song “El Camino,” although Lee’s Nelson-free version is as good as, if not better than, the collaborative take on the tune. Other standouts include the downtrodden but pretty “Out of the Cold,” the joyful “Violin,” the well-constructed balladry of “Stay With Me,” and the pensive-meets-instructive “Learned a Lot.”

 
Monday, February 7, 2011

4Play: Nic Dawson Kelly, Chet Baker, Various Artists, Tom Waits

Music Kristi Kates Nic Dawson Kelly - Old Valentine - 101
This debut set from the newbie Brit singer-songwriter finds him inviting over a few pals to help fill in his genre-crossing songs, including Portis head’s Jim Barr and Primal Scream’s Marco Nelson. Set on a foundation of folky guitars and rattling harmonicas, the set focuses on old Valentine’s Day love letters to sketch portraits of what seem to be a couple of Kelly’s
old loves. “Thursday 3-23” secures its harmonica right next to uplifting banjo riffs, while “The Musician” leans more on ‘50s/’60s era rock-folk, and “Delicate” showcases Kelly’s pensive, lovelorn vocals.
 
 
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