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Wednesday, September 26,2012

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
Jim Finkley, better known by his stage name Joe Buck, is a hard-stomping one-man band. With a kick drum at his feet and a beat-up acoustic in his hands, Buck viciously mixes classic hillbilly music with snarling gutter-punk vocals and distortion.
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Wednesday, September 19,2012

Blues brothers — and sisters

BluesFest rolls through Old Town this weekend, highlighting a unique Lansing sound

by Rich Tupica
In Lansing, there are two key fixtures that support the area's vibrant blues scene, keeping that 12-bar chord progression within two degrees of separation at any time: The Green Door, which has become a hallowed institution for the blues, attracting national and international acts with its electric atmosphere, and the annual Old Town BluesFest, which rolls into town like a storm once a year, shaking north Lansing to the quick.
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Wednesday, September 19,2012

Phoenix with nine lives

Disaster-prone Williamston pub expands with live performance venue

by Rich Tupica
When a business proprietor experiences three disasters in as many years, finding a willing insurance company gets to be a thorny state of affairs. Perhaps that's why bar owner Craig Banwell keeps his insurance agent, Ganesh Reddy, by his side — at least during interviews with local media.
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Wednesday, September 19,2012

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
Breathe Owl Breathe, an East Jordan, Mich. folk group, blends guitar, banjo, cello and vocals into an earthy indie folk sound. The trio's original songs are subtle and heartfelt, but sometimes come with a touch of humor. The band headlines a night of indie-folk Friday at (SCENE) Metrospace.
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Wednesday, September 12,2012

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
For those looking to relax by the water with some jazz piano, Thursday at the Waterfront Bar & Grill in the Lansing City Market may be just the spot. The evening features a performance from the Arlene McDaniel Trio, a local group known for original compositions and lesser known jazz standards. McDaniel is a veteran pianist in the field of jazz, working in the mid-Michigan area and beyond for 30 years.
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Wednesday, September 5,2012

When festivals attack!

REO Town reinventing itself as place 'where art is made.'

by Rich Tupica
If you drive south on Washington Square out of downtown Lansing, just beyond I-496 you'll hit REO Town. At least, you used to. Now you hit a Road Closed sign, a Sidewalk Closed sign, and, to top it all off, an orange Detour sign with giant arrow pointing toward the highway.
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Wednesday, September 5,2012

Diva sings the blues

Lansing songstress orchestrates stylish performance event

by Rich Tupica
The blues has always been sodden in gloom. Even the late gospel vocalist Mahalia Jackson once said, "Anybody singing the blues is in a deep pit yelling for help." But that’s not true for Twyla Birdsong.
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Wednesday, September 5,2012

Turn it down

A survey of Lansing's musical landscape

by Rich Tupica
Over 1,000 students are expected to fill the field outside of the MSU Auditorium for the annual Spartan Remix. The free, all-ages event features music from DJ Rod P — the official DJ for the Detroit Pistons — Karen Rodriguez, Enrique Rosas Duet and Zain Shamoon and the Blat Pack. Dances will be performed by the ASU African Student Union, FreQuency Dance Crew and the MSU Breakdance Club.
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Friday, August 31,2012

A complete guide to Lansing's music scene

Venues, record stores, music shops and local radio stations around town

by Rich Tupica
If moving into your new digs at Michigan State University included lugging heavy boxes of vinyl LPs and guitars up seemingly endless flights of stairs, getting hip to Lansing's music venues should be at the top of your list of things to do instead of homework. While mid-Michigan doesn't have a St. Andrew's Hall or Majestic Theatre, there are some great spots to check out left-of-the-dial tunes and some national touring groups.
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Wednesday, August 29,2012

The Zoobie's sessions

'Gypsy-jazz' band records album inside abandoned Old Town bar

by Rich Tupica
Dylan Rogers unlocks the back door of the dilapidated, vacant bar on the outskirts of Old Town, and slowly pushes it open. "Hello! Anybody here?" he shouts, carefully entering, crowbar in one hand, flashlight in the other. Then the stench hits— the kind of unpleasant odor only found in a building after years of neglect and vandalism. Thanks to Rogers and his wife, however, that odor is now ever so faintly covered up with the aroma of household cleansers.
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