Letters

Letters 12-14-2014

Come Together There is a time-honored war strategy known as “divide and conquer,” and never has it been more effective than now. The enemy is using it against us through television, internet and other social media. I opened a Facebook account a couple of years back to gain more entries in local contests. Since then I had fallen under its spell; I rushed into judgment on several social issues based on information found on those pages

Quiet The Phones! This weekend we attended two beautiful Christmas musical events and the enjoyment of both were significantly diminished by self-absorbed boors holding their stupid iPhones high overhead to capture extremely crucial and highly needed photos. We too own iPhones, but during a public concert we possess the decency and manners to leave them turned off and/or at home. Today’s performance, the annual Messiah Sing at Traverse City’s Central Methodist Church, was a new low: we watched as Mr. Self-Absorbed not only took several photos but then afterwards immediately posted them to his Facebook page. We were dumbfounded.

A Torturous Defense In defense of the C.I.A.’s use of torture in a mostly fruitless search for vital information, some suggest that the dire situation facing us after 9-11, justified the use of torture even at the expense of the potential loss of much of our nation’s moral authority.

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Monday, September 20, 2010

Will Ready

Music Kristi Kates Will Ready: Gets Ready for Fame
By Kristi Kates
A “small twist of fate,” singer Will Ready’s press kit explains, is
what pulled the former 200 pound, 6-foot-4-inch basketball player from
the sports world and into the music world.
 
Monday, September 20, 2010

Jeff Daniels

Music Kristi Kates Jeff Daniels: Acting on an Unexpected Talent
By Kristi Kates
It takes at least five hyphens to describe the career of Chelsea,
Michigan-based actor-director-playwright-singer-guitarist-songwriter
Jeff Daniels. And the “songwriter” part of that equation, Daniels
says, is always on the lookout for interesting song topics no matter
where he is or what he’s doing.
 
Monday, September 20, 2010

Collin Raye

Music Kristi Kates Collin Raye
By Kristi Kates
Socially-conscious, spiritually-minded, and firmly rooted in the American country music scene, Collin Raye has been crafting songs since early in his life and, as his latest album notes, “Never Going Back.”
He’ll bring songs from his new CD to his show at the Boyne City Performing Arts Center this Saturday.
Raye’s career began as a child, singing occasionally onstage with his mother Lois Wray, who worked as an opening act for a variety of Sun Records artists from Elvis Presley to Carl Perkins. Later, a country-rock band project with his brother, Scott - called simply The Wray Brothers Band - took off in the state of Texas and saw several indie singles released.
 
Monday, September 20, 2010

4Play: Squeeze, Sting, Autolux, David Gray

Music Kristi Kates Squeeze - Spot the Difference - XOXO Records
In a unique and remarkably fun album idea, talented singer-songwriters
Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook have taken a roster of old Squeeze
songs and have replicated them - with just a few minor changes (hence
the album title.) Some are easy to spot, such as Tilbrook subbing in
his own vocal for Paul Carrack on what is perhaps Squeeze’s best known
song, “Tempted”; but others are more subtle, such as different synth
patterns or instrument effects. The music is full of sass and energy,
and those deftly-written Squeeze songs are just as good as always.

 
Monday, September 20, 2010

Rootstand

Music Rick Coates Rootstand throws a Rootenanny
By Rick Coates
What has been a great summer of outdoor music festivals throughout
Northern Michigan wraps up this weekend with Rootenanny, hosted by
acoustic roots rockers, Rootstand. The three-day festival (September
24-26) in Ellsworth will feature 20 bands and is being promoted as a
family-friendly event for all ages.
 
Monday, September 13, 2010

Tantric set to Mind Control TC

Music Kristi Kates Tantric Set to “Mind Control” TC
By Kristi Kates
Alternative heavy-rock band Tantric’s latest album, Mind Control is
still slowly accelerating and gathering fans -- even though the disc
was released back in 2009, which is technically ‘ancient history’ in
the record industry.
 
Monday, September 13, 2010

4Play: Various Artists, Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse, Various Artists, Interpol

Music Kristi Kates Various Artists - Yo Gabba Gabba: Music is Awesome - Filter U.S.
The innovative TV series Yo Gabba Gabba mixes up modern-day music (and
bands) with groovy puppets and retro styling to relate simple but
necessary life lessons to anyone who watches. Viral videos often
circulate on YouTube and elsewhere of the many music, tv, and movie
talents that guest star on the show, but this is the first time that
fans can snag the original songs as performed by the Gabba cast and
special guest bands. This release (with hopefully more to follow)
includes the show’s popular theme song, as well as tracks by The Shins
(“It’s Okay, Try Again”), The Roots, Money Mark (“Robo Dancing”), and
Biz Markie’s hilarious “Biz’s Beat of the Day.” Cool.
 
Monday, August 30, 2010

Lollapalooza 2010

Music Kristi Kates One Weekend of Rock: Lollapalooza 2010
By Kristi Kates
After several travel-related snafus, our specially-commissioned Lollapalooza spies hit the ground running on Saturday morning in early August for the 2010 edition of the top-notch music festival.
 
Monday, August 30, 2010

Tribute Bands

Music Kristi Kates All Hail: Tribute Bands take over Little River
By Kristi Kates
Tribute bands have been around for a few decades now, most notably
since Elvis impersonators started paying homage to “the King” back in
the early 1970s. Just what is a tribute band? Unlike a cover band
(which just plays the songs of a particular band), a tribute band
works to take on a larger portion of the band’s entire persona, from
the band members’ looks and personalities to the stage setup,
lighting, and set lists.
 
Monday, August 30, 2010

Who Hit John?

Music Kristi Kates Who Hit John? Only the Music Knows
By Kristi Kates
Who Hit John? has made a lot of progress since the eclectic acoustic band began in 2006 as “three guys jamming in the living room for fun,“ as Who Hit John?‘s Dan McCartney puts it. McCartney, joined by fellow multi-instrumentalists Nathan Dannison, Nick Vander Vliet, Josh Keller, and Mark Duval, says that starting the project wasn‘t any sort of pre-planned notion - but was instead spurred by the simple enjoyment of music, and pal Dannison‘s, er, unusual brand of talent.
“We soon found out that my old friend Nathan played the fiddle like a tipsy raccoon, and decided we had a band,“ McCartney laughs.
 
Monday, August 30, 2010

4Play: The Magic Numbers, Various Artists, Sara Bareilles. Ed Kowalcyzk

Music Kristi Kates The Magic Numbers - Runaway - 101 Distribution
A pair of brother-sister, er, pairs, The Magic Numbers are working hard to revive the ‘60s folk/flower-power era, from their dense, well-balanced harmonies (which, in addition to their configuration, often see them being compared to the Mamas and the Papas) to their groovy lyrics and subject matter. “Why Did You Call?” and “Throwing My Heart Away” are peppy and ready for a few tambourine shakes, while “Restless River” and “I’m Sorry” focus more on the instrumentals behind the vocals, but there’s a good balance of both approaches.
 
Monday, August 23, 2010

KC‘s disco days

Music Rick Coates The Sun still Shines for KC’s Disco Days
By Rick Coates
Few musicians can take credit for actually creating a music style, but when you ask who was responsible for the disco music scene of the early ’70s, one Howard Wayne Casey comes to mind.
Casey founded the KC and the Sunshine Band in 1973 and is the force behind such hits as “(Shake, Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty,” “Give It Up,” “Keep It Comin’ Love,” “That’s The Way (I Like It),” “I’m Your Boogie Man,” “Get Down Tonight,” and “Boogie Shoes.” Along with the Bee Gees and Donna Summer, KC pioneered the disco music and dance scene.
Howard Wayne Casey, nicknamed KC, brings his band to Northern Michigan this weekend to the Odawa Casino Resort in Petoskey. The Saturday concert will be the band’s first appearance in Northern Michigan in years.
“I am looking forward to it up there. Is it snowing yet? I love the snow,” laughs KC. “I have been checking the weather up there and see that it has been great all summer. But truly I like the snow. I live in Miami and we don’t get snow, so I love it because I get to see it and then leave it.”
 
Monday, August 23, 2010

Arvel Bird‘s violin journey

Music Kristi Kates Arvel Bird’s Violin Journey
By Kristi Kates
The dulcet sounds of the violin are perhaps not usually thought of as being part of Native American musical culture. But musician Arvel Bird is drawing on little-known history to bring native violin sounds into the spotlight.
“You’re right - it’s not well-known as an instrument traditional to natives,” Bird explains, “but I understand that the violin was introduced to the indigenous people of North and South America beginning as early as 1689 by the Jesuit priests from Europe who brought the harp, guitar and violin so that they could have music for Mass on Sundays. So I think it’s safe to say that it’s been a tradition for the last 321 years. Almost 13 generations of some indigenous people have played the violin.”
 
Monday, August 23, 2010

Rosanne Cash

Music Kristi Kates Rosanne Cash’s LIST
By Kristi Kates
Rosanne Cash worked with a number of guest performers on her new
album, The List. A covers set, her first, that was narrowed down to a
select dozen songs from a list of an “Essential 100” that her father,
the late great Johnny Cash, gave to her when she was 18 years old, in
order to craft the foundation of her country-music education.
 
Monday, August 23, 2010

The 2010 top men of rock

Music Kristi Kates The 2010 Top 10 Men of Rock
By Kristi Kates
Some of the men making the biggest steps in the rock world this year were U.S. radio favorites, while others were conquering the market overseas. Some were making giant steps well under the radar (but just you wait...), while others were maintaining their already-established status among the world’s biggest bands. Still others were striking out into unknown territory in order to achieve new accomplishments - while the rest were keeping it simple and maximizing what they already do best.
And it’s the perfect balance of all of the above that helps us select who will be this year’s Top Ten Men of Rock.
 
 
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