Letters

Letters 09-22-2014

Lame Duck Move

Twenty three states are controlled by Republican state legislatures and governors including Michigan. It is reported that Michigan Republicans are planning a sneak attack during the lame duck session to change the way electoral votes are allocated in presidential elections...

Lessons From The Middle East

“My enemy’s enemy is my friend.” That statement applies in the Middle East....

Student Athletes, Coaches Worth It

Are coaches at major universities overpaid? A simple Google search will show quite the opposite. These coaches do not get paid with taxpayer money. The coaches get paid by media companies, equipment companies, alumni groups, as well as revenue from ticket sales and merchandise...

Mute The Political Ads

Mark Sunday, September 14th as the opening of the flood gates, with TV political attack advertising. Fasten your seat belts until November 4th...

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Monday, November 8, 2010

Hillbilly Music

Music Kristi Kates Hillbilly Music: Old Sledge brings the music of the mountains
By Kristi Kates
The sound of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia comes to Northern Michigan this week, with the arrival of Old Sledge.
“This winter is going to be a busy one for Old Sledge,” begins the band’s Sabra Guzmán. “we wrapped up a great summer with festivals and new venues, and for this fall, we’re getting to visit four new towns in Michigan. We’re really excited to be treading into new territory, and hope to make some new friends and fans!”
If you’re a fan of traditional “old-timey” music, whether fiddle tunes, Appalachian classics, or revitalized blues, chances are you’ll quickly become a fan of Guzmán and her bandmate, aptly named Chance McCoy. The pair of friends, who often round out their duo sound by adding frequent live collaborators Ben Townsend or Jake Hopping, will be performing in Petoskey this Saturday at the Crooked Tree Arts Center.
 
Monday, November 8, 2010

4Play: Brian Wilson, Madlib, Lloyd Miller, Various Artists

Music Kristi Kates Brian Wilson - Reimagines Gershwin - Disney
The uber-talented Brian Wilson keeps evolving as a creative musician, this time taking on two pieces of music left by the equally skillful George Gershwin when he passed away (with the approval of the Gershwin estate.) Wilson’s gift for melodies blends perfectly with Gershwin’s
lush, beautiful compositions, adding modernity to the likes of “They Can’t Take That Away From Me” and “Summertime.” And Wilson completes the unfinished “The Like in I Love You” and “Nothing But Love” with his gift for songcraft; he adds beachy buoyancy and delicate emotion to both of these tracks that Gershwin unintentionally left in very good musical hands.
 
Monday, November 8, 2010

Hana Malhas

Music Rick Coates Exotic Import Hana Malhas
By Rick Coates
The Mideast meets the Midwest when Jordanian singer-songwriter Hana
Malhas brings her indie folk to the stage of the InsideOut Gallery
this Saturday.
Born and raised in Jordan, Hana (pronounced Hena) made her way to the
U.S. 11 years ago to attend the University of Michigan, earning both
undergraduate and graduate degrees from the prestigious Stephen M.
Ross School of Business. She fell in love with Ann Arbor and found a
financial position with a non-profit.
 
Monday, November 8, 2010

Fox on a Hill

Music Kristi Kates Fox on a Hill: Celebrates Four Years
By Kristi Kates
Fox hunting takes a musical twist this week with an organization whose
‘targets’ are promising musicians.
Founded by Patrick Schaller, Susan Fawcett, and Clay Ebert, Fox on a
Hill Productions is becoming well-known for their promotion of
primarily Michigan-based musicians, artists, and filmmakers.
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

Benny Green

Music Kristi Kates Benny Green‘s Been Around: 100 album jazz odyssey for swing maven
By Kristi Kates
Benny Green’s discography reads like - well, like a very long discography. Green’s work, both on his own as a highly-regarded jazz pianist and also as a sideman to everyone from Art Blakey to Cecil Brooks III, Betty Carter to Bob Belden, Ray Brown to Freddie Hubbard, is more than impressive, spanning well over 100 album appearances.
And now, he’ll be adding to his equally lengthy list of live performances with a show at Interlochen’s Dendrinos Chapel and Recital Hall on November 4.
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

Robin Lee Berry

Music Kristi Kates The Ubiquitous Robin Lee Berry
LEAVING LANSING
Berry got her start in the music industry singing in clubs in East
Lansing in the late 1970s; she also worked at the Lansing Sound
Recording Studio, doing vocal work and voiceovers for advertisements.
One year, she was offered a New Year’s Eve gig in Charlevoix, and, as
she puts it, “fell in love with the area.”
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

4Play: Glee Cast, Goo Goo Dolls, Level42, The Maine

Music Kristi Kates Glee Cast - Glee: The Music Volume 3: Showstoppers - Columbia
“Gleeksters,” as fans of this TV show are called, have already - along with, surprisingly, a whole lot of other folks - snapped up the first two volumes of cover songs as performed by the Glee cast - so what’s to stop the success of a third volume, in all its campy pop glory? A wider range of the show’s cast is included here than on previous sets, from Amber Riley’s take on Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” to Mark Salling’s “Lady is a Tramp.” There are group numbers, too - Glee’s trek through Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” and Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” - plus guest tunes from Olivia Newton-John and Broadway’s Kristen Chenoweth.
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

Paper Plane Pilots

Music Erin Cowell High Flying : Female bandmates help propel Paper Plane Pilots
By Erin Crowell
By day, Chandra LaPointe and Jennifer Harrison earn their paychecks like any other person— LaPointe as a middle school teacher at Mancelona Public Schools; Harrison as a parts sales rep at Traverse Motors. But by night, they take center stage, representing the double X chromosome of the Paper Plane Pilots.
One of Northern Michigan’s most popular bands, The Paper Plane Pilots is a combination of male and female talents, glued by the rhythms of Harrison (on drums) and the unquestionably able voice of LaPointe (main vocals and keyboard).
“Other than designated dressing rooms, there’s really nothing to say about having two female band members,” says Jon Head (guitar and vocals). “They really nail it.”
 
Monday, November 1, 2010

Women of rock

Music Kristi Kates 2010 - Women of Rock
By Kristi Kates
Although one name may predominate this year’s music scene when you
consider women in rock, that doesn’t necessarily mean that that one
songstress was the best the year had to offer - nor the only artist
around.
 
Monday, October 25, 2010

John Jorgenson

Music Kristi Kates John Jorgenson Serves Up Gypsy Jazz
By Kristi Kates
Where most kids today probably don’t feel rewarded unless they’re bought candy, movie passes, or the latest videogame, musician John Jorgenson’s childhood was a lot less commerce-driven - and far more rewarding in the long run.
“I got interested in music really early on, because both of my parents are musicians,” Jorgenson explains. “My father is a conductor; my mother, a piano teacher. So we heard music all ‘round the house, all the time, when we were kids. It was like a treat - if we were good, we’d get to listen to ‘Peter and the Wolf’ or ‘Carnival of the Animals.’ Music was always something special and cool.”
Now, fortunate kids whose parents have a little more insight beyond BioShock 2 or Snickers bars might be passing along Jorgenson’s own music to their potentially musically-gifted offspring.
 
Monday, October 25, 2010

Salaam

Music Kristi Kates Salaam Bringing Peace Through Music
By Kristi Kates
Singer and musician Dena El Saffar grew up in Chicago in an Iraqi-American household, learning classical violin at the age of six. But it was the Arabic music listened to by her family - and initially not given too much thought by her - that would draw her into forming the band that is now called Salaam, a musical expression of El Saffar, her culture, and her bandmates’ wishes for peace - and simply good music.
“Salaam is actually the Arabic word for ‘peace,’” El Saffar says. The band - El Saffar (on vocals, violin, viola, djoze, and ‘oud) along with percussionist/husband Tim Moore; Kevin MacDowell on accordian, guitar, and bass; and Sam Finley on guitar and bass - was formed in 1993, after El Saffar’s life-changing trip to her family’s homeland.
She traveled to the Iraqi capital of Baghdad with her father at the age of 17, and had taken her viola along to practice. Soon, she found herself playing along to cassettes of Iraqi pop music on her viola with her newfound friends, where she says it became like a ‘huge party’ as everyone started clapping and dancing along.
 
Monday, October 25, 2010

4Play: Mes Aieux. The Devil Wears Prada, Karen Elson, Black Lotus

Music Kristi Kates Mes Aieux - La Ligne Orange - LLO
French popsters Mes Aieux’s latest (translated as “The Orange Line,” aka the Montreal Metro system) put forth an interesting blend of Canadian folk songs blended with their own modern lyrics; this mix allows them to stand out even more than their considerable musical talents already do. On this set, their fifth, they tap into classic pub songs and French chansons to translate over their topical wordplay, which includes subjects as diverse as the Olympics and local street musicians. Fifteen songs in all make this a worthy, unique, and interesting listen.



 
Monday, October 18, 2010

Young Dubs

Music Rick Coates The Young Dubs: On The Rocky Road From Dublin
By Rick Coates
Celtic rockers, The Young Dubliners, (Young Dubs) love Traverse City.
While most touring acts hardly know what day it is, let alone what
town they are in, The Young Dubs have their favorites and Traverse
City ranks right up at the top.
 
Monday, October 18, 2010

Trapt

Music Kristi Kates Trapt Without Apology: Live in TC
By Kristi Kates
“The name ‘Trapt’ came from feeling like you’re trapped by authority
figures,” Trapt bassist Peter Charell explains, “and kind of morphed
into being trapped by personal issues as well.”
 
Monday, October 18, 2010

Sevendust

Music Kristi Kates Sevendust Searches for its Soul
By Kristi Kates
Beautiful fall colors, a short drive - and some impressively aggressive rock music - are all great reasons to head up to Sault Ste. Marie for the evening on October 19. Especially if you’re a fan of Georgia-based band Sevendust.
Just don’t try to pigeonhole them - the band themselves aren’t even sure where to place their sound within the alt-rock genre, according to Sevendust guitarist John Connolly.
“I don’t know - I’ve been trying to figure that out,” he said in a recent interview, “people, for five minutes, called us progressive, and then it was nu-metal. Then, all of a sudden, we were playing alternative metal. We are some kind of heavy, and some kind of rock, and some kind of metal.”
 
 
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