Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

Topic: sound
Monday, March 31, 2014

Driftwood’s Striking Sound

Music Kristi Kates “The sound stems from a few different things,” said Byrne, who also leads and backs up on vocals. “We have all studied classically, and I think that, combined with our various musical influences, anything from Hendrix to Doc Watson, gives us the sound we have.
Monday, July 7, 2014


Northern Michigan is probably one of the few places you’ll find a band inspired by, and in fact formed because of, steelhead fishing.

Music Kristi Kates Adam Carpenter, Evan Simula, Jacob Kuhlman, and Jonah Kuhlman are Chasin’ Steel, an Up North bluegrass quartet that’s taken two of their shared hobbies to heart and string.
Monday, July 14, 2014

The ‘Return’ of THE BEATLES

Beatles fans don’t take their tribute bands lightly.

Music Kristi Kates When any foursome takes the stage and starts playing as John, Paul, George and Ringo, one false note can ruin the magic. Fortunately, four guys from Georgia aren’t just playing around – they’re serious as Sunday about the sound, look and mannerisms of the Fab Four.
Monday, November 24, 2014

The Ragbirds Are a Travelin' Machine

Music Kristi Kates Multiple appearances at Blissfest and other Up North venues have made the Ragbirds familiar faces around the northern Michigan music scene, despite being based in Ann Arbor. The last time Northern Express spoke with the band, they were in the middle of promoting their then-new album, Finally Almost Ready, and were taking their sound to stages in 20 states.
Monday, January 5, 2015

Boyne’s Funk Brothers: The Pistil Whips

Music Kristi Kates “I met Will’s stepmom one of the nights at the festival,” Jaqua said. “It was dark and I couldn’t see her face. She told me her son was in a band and they were from Boyne City. When someone shined a light on her face, I realized it was a woman that had cut my hair at the salon in Boyne.
Monday, March 16, 2015

Wisaal Weaving a Sound

Music Kristi Kates EARLY YARN All six members of the Lansing-based Mediterranean fusion group — Will Cicola on clarinets and saxophone, Houwat on oud, Ben Fuhrman on mandolin, Tim Patterson on bass, and Ty Forquer and Mike List on percussion — are classically-trained musicians.
Saturday, November 14, 2015

Great Lake Swimmers On Deck at The Dennos

Music Kristi Kates If you like the music of Iron and Wine, Band of Horses, The Low Anthem or Nick Drake, chances are you’ll like Canadian folk-rockers Great Lake Swimmers, too.