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Wednesday, December 31,2014

A&C How it was

A look at the year in Lansing´s cultural scene

by Allan I. Ross
Trying to figure out the cultural highlight of 2014 in mid-Michigan boils down to a clash of clashes: Was it the Caped Crusader taking on the Man of Steel at the filming of “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” at the Broad Art Museum in October, or was it the musical genre showdown that was presented to local music aficionados at Classical Meets Jazz at the Wharton Center last month? Seeing as how the film shoot was a closed set and local extras weren’t allowed to make a peep, it seems Ellington and Mozart slightly edge out Supes and Bats. Sorry, guys, but it all comes down to transparency.
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Wednesday, December 31,2014

Categorical imperatives

Some of 2014’s best films flew way under the radar

by Allan I. Ross
It’s easy to sing the praises of films like “Birdman,” “Boyhood” and “Whiplash” — fine films, all — but some of the year’s best films will likely languish unseen in your online streaming queue unless they get a little bump. Consider this that bump. By category, the best films I saw in 2014:
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Wednesday, December 31,2014

New in town

by Allan I. Ross
Coffee grounded It was a good year for local java junkies. Strange Matter Coffee Co., 2001 E. Michigan Ave., opened in Lansing’s newly (re)named East Town neighborhood. And two new “micro-roasters” started cranking out bags of beans to local restaurants and specialty retail shops: Bloom Coffee Roasters and Rust Belt Roastery, both in Old Town.
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Wednesday, December 31,2014

Dance away to the blues

Friday, Jan. 2

by Jonathan Griffith
There is something decidedly retro about Lansing’s REO Town. Granted, it’s a revitalized corner of town built on the historic grounds where some of the world’s first automobiles were massproduced, but even the area’s residents would admit that the throwback vibe is pervasive. Come on, they have a restaurant called Vintage Café, people. It only makes sense then that for a couple Fridays out of the month, REO Town hosts an event where you can slick back your hair, grab your best girl and dance the Cake Walk. Enter Sugar House Blues
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Tuesday, December 23,2014

Michigan stories

Gift suggestions for books from and about the Great Lake State

by Bill Castanier
Adventurous chipmunks, as featured in City Pulse´s cover story this week, aren’t the only Michigan characters that made their way onto the page this year. If you’re still looking for a last-minute gift for that bookworm on your list, consider one of these selections with local connections. Dennis O. Cawthorne’s “Mackinac Island: Inside, Up Close, and Personal” and Michael Federspiel’s “Little Traverse Bay” are both delightful looks at the history of Michigan’s cottage life.
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Tuesday, December 23,2014

NYE 2015

A selection of Lansing-area New Year’s events for Wednesday, Dec. 31

by City Pulse
Beggar’s Banquet Complimentary champagne toast at midnight and food specials all evening. 5 p.m. FREE. Beggar’s Banquet, 218 Abbot Road, East Lansing. (517) 351-4540. Crowne Plaza Lansing West/Bordeaux “Great Gatsby”-themed celebration includes five-course dinner...
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Tuesday, December 23,2014

Awww inspiring

Local author’s formula: Patience plus determination minus digital manipulation

by ALLAN I. ROSS
In 1958, Alvin, Simon and Theodore harmonized on “The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don’t Be Late),” the novelty holiday tune that introduced the immortal Christmas plea, “Me, I want a hoooola hooooooop.” (Sorry if that’s stuck in your head now.) Singer/songwriter Ross Bagdassarian employed simple audio trickery to create the helium-voiced trio that would go on to spawn albums, Saturday morning cartoons and a live action movies series.
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Tuesday, December 23,2014

Turn it Down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
NYE with Peoples Temple, Devil´s Cut, Plurals at Avenue Cafe, Wednesday, Dec. 31 The Avenue Café is kicking off the New Year with a roster of loud and local rock ‘n’ roll bands. Co-headliners are Peoples Temple and the Devil’s Cut; openers are the Plurals and Voyag...
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Tuesday, December 23,2014

Tip your songwriter

Lansing’s music scene sounds off on licensing fees

by Casey Bye
According to the long-running MasterCard ads, an experience can be priceless. Of course, the actual price of that experience includes a $90 concert ticket, a $15 transaction fee, $20 for parking and a few PBR tallboys ranging anywhere from $3 to $8 a pop. But the opportunity to see the Rolling Stones perform one last time (or one more last time) or Of Montreal pull out a three-song stretch of David Bowie songs — that truly is hard to put a price on.
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Thursday, December 18,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

In the (Saint) Nick of Time, Pt. 2

by Neil Rajala
Thursday, Dec. 18 — As promised, the final three genres, with my favorite three titles in each. A friend wrote after last week that my list didn't match hers because we didn't read many of the same books. To which I say "perfect!" Let's help each other discover great things to read. Here's what we're reading:
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