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  • Detroit group Feral Ground is out to prove hip-hop is alive and well

    By LeeAnn Brown Some people say that hip-hop is dead. Local ban Fderal Ground is proving that is not the case. The seven-member band, consisting of three lead vocalists, a DJ, bass, drums and guitar, plays what they call “living hip-hop.” Their music, peppered with multiple styles, covers all aspects of life from growing up in the D to playing with fire despite knowing you will likely get burned. Their undeniable chemistry and raw lyrics compose a music that is living, breathing, and connecting to their listeners. It has been nearly 11 years since Vinny Mendez and Michael Powers conjured up the basement idea that has flowered into the Detroit funk-hop band Feral Ground. Throughout high school the two wrote and rapped consistently, playing shows here and there. In those years they matched their rap stanzas with the animated, dynamic voice of Ginger Nastase and saw an instant connection. The now trio backed their lyrics with DJ Aldo’s beats on and off for years, making him a permanent member within the last year, along with Andy DaFunk (bass), Joseph Waldecker (drums), and newest member, Craig Ericson (guitar). We sat down with Feral Ground and their manager, Miguel Mira, in their […]

    The post Detroit group Feral Ground is out to prove hip-hop is alive and well appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Yale professor talks Plato, James Madison and Detroit’s emergency manager law

    Much has been made about Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s decision this week to transfer authority of the city’s water department to Mayor Mike Duggan. In what is the most interesting read on the situation, Jason Stanley, professor of philosophy at Yale, pens an analysis on Michigan’s novel emergency manager law on the New York Times Opinionator blog. Stanley deconstructs Michigan’s grand experiment in governance by addressing two questions: Has the EM law resulted in policy that maximally serves the public good? And, is the law consistent with basic principles of democracy? Stanley ties in examples of Plato, James Madison’s Federalist Papers, and Nazi political theorist Carl Schmitt. A short excerpt: Plato was a harsh critic of democracy, a position that derived from the fact that his chief value for a society was social efficiency. In Plato’s view, most people are not capable of employing their autonomy to make the right choices, that is, choices that maximize overall efficiency. Michigan is following Plato’s recommendation to handle the problems raised by elections. Though there are many different senses of “liberty” and “autonomy,” none mean the same thing as “efficiency.” Singapore is a state that values efficiency above all. But by no stretch of […]

    The post Yale professor talks Plato, James Madison and Detroit’s emergency manager law appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Where to meet a baby dinosaur this week

    Walking with Dinosaurs, a magnificent stage show that features life-sized animatronic creatures from the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods, will be in town next week. But to preview the show’s run at the Palace, a baby T-Rex will be making an appearance at four area malls to the delight and wonderment of shoppers. Baby T-Rex, as the creature is being affectionately referred to, is seven-feet-tall and 14-feet-long. He’ll only be at each mall for about 15 minutes, so while there will be photo opportunities, they’ll be short. The dino will be at Fairlane Town Center Center Court at 18900 Michigan Ave. in Detroit from 2-2:15 p.m. today, July 30; The Mall at Partridge Creek at 17420 Hall Rd. in Clinton Township from 5-5:15 p.m. today, July 30; Twelve Oaks Mall at the Lord & Taylor Court at 27500 Novi Rd., Novi tomorrow, Thursday July 31 from 1:30-1:45 p.m.; and Great Lakes Crossing Food Court at 4000 Baldwin Rd., Auburn Hills from 5-5:15 p.m., tomorrow Thursday, July 31.  

    The post Where to meet a baby dinosaur this week appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit website offers stats, updates on city operations

    Interested in reading about what Detroit accomplishes on a week-to-week basis that’s produced by the city itself? Great. You can do that now, here, at the Detroit Dashboard. Every Thursday morning, the city will publish an update to the dashboard because Mayor Mike Duggan loves metrics, even if the data might be hard to come by. According to Duggan’s office, the dashboard will provide data on how many LED street lights were installed, how many vacant lots were mowed, how much blight was removed, and more. This week, the city says it has sold 13 site lots through BuildingDetroit.com, removed 570 tons of illegal dumping, and filed 57 lawsuits against abandoned property owners.  

    The post Detroit website offers stats, updates on city operations appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Long John Silver’s makes nod to Nancy Whiskey in YouTube commercial

    We don’t know about you, but usually Nancy Whiskey and Long John Silver’s aren’t two concepts we’d place in the same sentence. However, the international fast food fish fry conglomerate made a nod to the Detroit dive in their latest YouTube commercial. LJS is offering free fish fries on Saturday, August 2, which is the promotion the commercial is attempting to deliver. But, we think we’ll just go to Nancy Whiskey instead.

    The post Long John Silver’s makes nod to Nancy Whiskey in YouTube commercial appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Michigan’s women-only music fest still shuns trans women

    We came across an interesting item this week: Apparently, a music festival with the name “Michfest” is quietly oriented as a “Women-Only Festival Exclusively for ‘Women Born Women.’” It seems a strange decision to us. If you wanted to have a women-only music festival, why not simply proclaim loud and clear that it is for all sorts of women? But if you really wanted to become a lightning rod for criticisms about transphobia, organizers have found the perfect way to present their festival. Now, we know that defenders of non-cisgender folks have it tough. The strides made by gays and lesbians (and bisexuals) in the last 20 years have been decisive and dramatic. But the people who put the ‘T’ in LGBT have reason to be especially defensive, facing a hostile culture and even some disdain from people who should be their natural allies. That said, sometimes that defensiveness can cause some activists to go overboard; when we interviewed Dan Savage a couple years ago, he recalled his “glitter bombing” and said it was due to the “the narcissism of small differences,” adding that “if you’re playing the game of who is the most victimized, attacking your real enemies doesn’t prove you’re most victimized, claiming you […]

    The post Michigan’s women-only music fest still shuns trans women appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Best of Detroit 2013

Spend the Night - Reader's Choice

Reader's choice for nightlife in Metro Detroit

Photo: N/A, License: N/A


 

Best Bar for Karaoke in Macomb County

Kit Kat Klub

55140 Romeo Plank Rd., Macomb; 586-781-3171

Just a little joint off on the side of a subdivision out by the corner of 25 Mile Road, apparently this is where they whoop it up, karaoke-style, on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Look them up online. They have kind of an interesting Google image problem.

 

Best Bar for Karaoke in Washtenaw County

Best Musical Open-Mic or Jam Session

Woodruff’s

36 E. Cross St., Ypsilanti

woodruffsbar.com

This Ypsi venue has several smaller spaces inside, which makes it kind of ideal for those just beginning to perform. Situated in the heart of Depot Town, just off the train tracks, Woodruff’s has made admirable efforts to foster a regular rotation of engaging weekly programming, including its open-mic and karaoke nights.

 

Best Happy Hour for Drinks in Wayne County

Roast

1128 Washington Blvd., Detroit

313-961-2500; roastdetroit.com

The drinks are wonderful, the beer menu is loaded with more flavors than most wine menus, and the interior is stylish and usually crowded with a who’s who of downtown Detroit. But maybe it’s the affordable menu of bar bites that puts happy hour at Roast over the top.

 

Best Happy Hour for Drinks in Oakland County

Big Rock Chophouse

245 S. Eton St., Birmingham

248-647-7774; bigrockchophouse.com

Big Rock Chophouse oozes northern lodge appeal, with a variety of rooms in which to dine, including an outdoor patio. The lively atmosphere is complemented by skillfully crafted menus. In addition to the restaurant is a large brew house with custom-designed, state-of-the-art equipment.

 

Best Happy Hour for Drinks in Macomb County

Hooters

32976 Gratiot Ave., Roseville

586-415-9870; hooters.com

Really, Macomb County? Choosing Hooters for Best Happy Hour is like choosing Red Lobster for Best Seafood. Oh, that’s right. You did that last year.

 

Best Happy Hour for Drinks in Washtenaw County

Grizzly Peak

120 W. Washington St., Ann Arbor

734-741-7325; grizzlypeak.net

Grizzly Peak has the feel of a restrained hunting lodge that enjoys its own history more than its kills (you’ll find a mounted buck or two, but the exposed brick interior tends to remain neutrally bare). But the award-winning beer is the real centerpiece, featuring several on-tap Weissbiers and ales during the summer months. Some specialty brews go fast — call for detailed offerings.

 

Best Fetish Party or Fetish Night

Noir Leather’s Hellbound

When it comes to a pedigree in kink, nobody’s runs deeper than Noir Leather’s Keith Howarth. So it only makes sense that his store’s fetish night would be the best bet for the leather set.

 

Best Club Night in Wayne County

Bass Down Low at the Works on Thursdays

1846 Michigan Ave., Detroit; 313-961-1742

Brought to you courtesy of those bangin’ people at DetroitDubStep.com, namely DJs Matt Clarke and Jon “Calico” Davis, Bass Down Low serves as both an eclectic night of great music for existing connoisseurs of dubstep and techno, and a fine introduction to what is currently a thriving Detroit scene for curious newbies. Clarke and Davis absolutely know their stuff, and their own sets delve deep into the darkest corners of what dubstep has to offer, while offering up an impressive array of guest DJ’s too.

 

Best Club Night in Oakland County

Best Electronic Club

Elektricity

15 S. Saginaw St., Pontiac

248-599-2212; elektricitymusic.com

Elektricity has been an exciting addition to Metro Detroit, while making a substantial mark on the rising popularity of everything EDM. The 18 and up club has been the landing zone for the top international and domestic Electronic music DJs for the last two years. And it also opened its doors for the Redbull Thre3style competition last year, where hip-hop DJs battled and competed to move up the ranks. The club has a future as the hub for weekend fun and DJ’s everywhere.

 

Best Club Night in Washtenaw County

Factory at Necto on Mondays

516 E. Liberty St., Ann Arbor

734-994-5835; necto.com

Mondays at gothic night at Necto, with alternative dance from DJ Jinx, as well as synthpop and industrial, running sometimes back to the 1990s and 1980s, with Nine Inch Nails, Rammstein, etc.

 

Best Lesbian Bar

Stilleto’s

1641 Middlebelt Rd., Inkster

734-729-8980

If there is any place you plan on going to spread your rainbow wings and get down on the dance floor, Stiletto’s must be it. It has won Best Lesbian Bar for a couple years now, and it’s because the two room bar allows you to mingle and flirt, while also enjoying some of Detroit’s best and fun drag shows. If that’s not worth a gander and a little time, I don’t know what is. And for the straight men or women that may creep in, don’t worry, they have fire escapes.

 

Best Strip Club

Penthouse Club

20771 W. Eight Mile Rd., Detroit; 313-541-7000

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