Archive for January, 2008

Koffin Kats at the Token Lounge

My musical adventures took me out to Westland to watch the Koffin Kats at the Token Lounge Thursday night. The collection of Detroit and national bands plastered behind the bar was a treat. Experiencing psychobilly under a leopard print ceiling adorned with chandeliers was an experience. The lead singer’s ability to drag, lift, spin, jump off, and play a base was impressive; the unnecessary drama of fake blood streaming down his face, not so much. The lead singer had a great voice with a classic haunting quality I love, the drummer stole the show, and the bassist’s hair defied gravity.

Put Your Hands Up For Detroit!

You gotta love EuroTrash!

Apparently, this is what Netherlandians think Detroit is all about.

first you get the money then you get the power and when you get the power then you get the women

although it would be nice to keep this as a place to discuss all the positive things going on in the city of Detroit i don’t think we can sit on our hands and ignore the elephant in the room. it’ has made national news as another black eye for the city and it’s got everyone talking so why not here? of course i’m speaking of the most recent hot water our fearless leader has found himself in. let me start by stating that i have never been a fan of his and i declared that if he was elected to a second term that i would leave the city and i did. i only moved up the road a few miles (East English Village to Grosse Pointe) and i moved before selling my old house (which is still for sale after almost two years) but i just couldn’t handle paying for him anymore. (on a side note that infamous Navigator that got him in so much trouble years ago was purchased at the dealership which is just a couple hundred yards away from my old house) as a matter of fact i first stumbled upon this site while searching for info on these stickers that seemed to be showing up everywhere just before the last election. so, i would like to see some responses from people that voted him in for round two and maybe tell me what you saw in him that maybe i am missing and if you voted for him then…are you regretting it or are you still on board? and please remember, this is not a black/white, city/suburbs thing. what goes on in Detroit City hall can effect the whole Detroit metro area. now i’ll turn it over to all of you:

The Scandal That Rocked the City

Alright, I’ll bite…

Kwame Kilpatrick, I am officially disappointed in you. Me? I stood up for you when you took some pretty heavy hits. The navigator? Credit cards? Whistleblower lawsuit? I backed you up. Even in the last election, I still thought you had potential. But not anymore.

The Free Press has devoted a section to the original whistleblower suit here, and the whole homepage is pretty much devoted to this text message debacle , but if you want to read my take, then click away…
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Hard Rock Detroit

Detroit’s downtown core has few recognizable franchises. I am grateful for the most part for our unique offerings, but a smattering of these franchises is appreciated in terms of national recognition and standard. One international franchise that is prominent is the Hard Rock Café in Campus Martius. I have been to many cities with the franchise but never eaten at one until earlier this week. The presentation and quality of the food at the Detroit location was really nice for a restaurant revolving around the burger. The service was beyond enthusiastic and the flare, sported by wait staff, was plentiful. One can shop from one’s table and add it to the restaurant tab. The space is pleasingly lit, warmly decorated, and an overall nice experience. Like any other franchise, one forgets that they are in any particular city. The only connection I had to Detroit while dining was sitting under Diana Ross’s dress.

Have you ever seen a Juggling Xylophonist?

I have.

Last night I chose Amsterdam Espresso for the site of my usual Tuesday night write. Although I’ve patronized this cozy little Midtown coffee shop several times, I’ve always managed to miss the many musical performances scheduled throughout the year. But I found one on Tuesday and it was well worth the wait.

Tovio Roberts quietly set up his small amp, acoustic guitar, and what looked like a makeshift xylophone with a small crash cymbal to its right.

With a young female accompanist on violin, Roberts played a soft, almost mournful 45-minute set of dreamy, reverb-haloed folk music. The PA system was admittedly of very poor quality and most of the words were difficult to understand, but Roberts communicated to the audience his deeply moving music with an intensity that was difficult to ignore from behind a book or a cigarette. I certainly couldn’t read or write while he played.

But it was his final song that blew me away. Tovio stepped up to his xylophone and strapped on a harmonica around his neck, Dylan-style. The violin provided rhythm to the dulcet melody he played on the xylophone, holding two drumsticks in his right hand and one in his left. The melody and the calming dinging of the notes were satisfying enough, when suddenly Tovio began juggling the drumsticks while continuing to play the melody. He came down with an occasional hit on the cymbal and then started playing the harmonica while juggling his melody on for two minutes.

Just check out this YouTube video to see what I mean.

Listen to Tovio Roberts’ songs at his Myspace page. I like them all.

sounds a little nicer than the “Uncle Clyde’s Groceryville” where i usually shop

this is exactly the sort of thing Detroit needs. a business that realizes when you pay three hundred thousand dollars (or more) for a loft in a large-ish city you’re probably not too keen on grocery shopping at a place that has a bullet proof wall between you and the clerk, a revolving payment door and a hobo in front of the place asking if he can have some of the stuff you just bought. welcome to the neighborhood, Zacarro’s and thanks for giving this place a chance.

24 Hour Internet Access – too much to ask?

When I moved to the city, I did not get at-home internet access on purpose. I wanted to be able to hit up coffee shops around the city and make use of publicly available internet – the burden of taking on a mortgage had a bit to do with it as well. The problem arises for the most part on Sunday nights, when none of the coffee shops in the city are open. I walked into one shop and the barista girl suggested parking outside a shop and taking advantage of the wireless from my car, not shady in the least.

Brrr…

This past week has been sooo cold, I actually jumped for joy today when I saw that the high temp. was forecast at 20 degrees.
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Happy MLK Day!

Happy MLK day from all of us at Metroblogging Detroit! The Free Press has put together a compilation of MLK events around Metro Detroit today, such as the fifth annual Martin Luther King Day Rally and March, scheduled at noon, at Central United Methodist Church, and Walled Lake Consolidated Schools’ ninth annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration, which lasts from 5 to 8 p.m. Click here for more.

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