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  • 48 to film — behind the scenes at the 48 Hour Film Project

    By Amanda Mooney There’s a lot that goes into producing a film, and unless you are a filmmaker you really have no idea. Writing, casting, finding a location, shooting, and editing; each step of the process can take days, months, and sometimes years to complete. Can you imagine doing it ALL in just 48 hours? The 48 Hour Film Project is an annual competition that takes place all over the world in various cities. According to Mike Madigan, head of the Detroit 48 Hour chapter, the city is one of the largest participating in terms of the number of teams. The competing teams go in blind as to what kind of film they will be producing, with no creative planning beyond getting a cast and crew together, Madigan explained. “They pick a genre out of a hat, and they get a line, a prop, and a character. And they have to incorporate that within a short film, that’s usually between 4 to 7 minutes long. And they have the timeframe of doing it all within 48 hours,” said Madigan, “So all the creative process of it all has to happen within that 48 hour–writing a script, putting it together, editing–to […]

    The post 48 to film — behind the scenes at the 48 Hour Film Project appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Passalacqua debut dark new project ‘Church: Revival’ at new Hamtramck performance space

    Church: Revival is the new project by local rap duo Passalacqua (aka Bryan Lackner and Brent Smith), but it’s more than just a new Passalacqua release. The rappers teamed up with siblings Jax Anderson (frontwoman of rockers Flint Eastwood) and Seth Anderson, who together form the songwriting team called Syblyng (naturally). The result is a cycle of songs that promises to be darker than Passalacqua’s material so far. The project will make a live debut on Saturday, July 26 at a brand new venue space at the Detroit Bus Co.’s building Eight & Sand, and they will premiere the Right Bros.-directed video for the track “Baptism” as well. Other performances include Tunde Olaniran and Open Mike Eagle, and DJ sets by Nothing Elegant, Dante LaSalle, and Charles Trees. We met up the two duos at Eight & Sand to check out the new space and to talk about the project with all parties involved. Metro Times: How long have you been working together? Jax Anderson: Seth and I are constantly writing songs together. We want to push in the direction of becoming songwriters more frequently. This is our first project that we took on to co-write everything together. We’re basically just a songwriting entity. We won’t play live that […]

    The post Passalacqua debut dark new project ‘Church: Revival’ at new Hamtramck performance space appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • PETA offers to pay overdue water bills for Detroiters willing to go vegan

    #150207742 / As locals continue to flood Detroit streets to protest the city’s ongoing water debacle, one national organization is hoping to be part of the solution — that is, for a dietary price. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, or PETA as the organization is more commonly known, has offered to pay outstanding water bills for 10 Detroiters who are willing to go vegan for one month. “Vegan meals take far less of a toll on the Earth’s resources,” PETA representatives said in a recent press release. “It takes about 2,500 gallons of water to produce just a pound of meat but only about 155 gallons of water to produce a pound of wheat.” PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk adds, “Vegan meals are also a cost-effective way to help prevent health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart conditions, the last thing that someone who is struggling financially needs to deal with.” Folks interested in participating are asked to send a copy of their most recent overdue water bill and their written pledge to go vegan for one month to PETA Attn: Detroit Water at 501 Front St., Norfolk, VA 23510 before Aug. 1.

    The post PETA offers to pay overdue water bills for Detroiters willing to go vegan appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Dinner Club Does Brunch

    Sure, The Dinner Club, a regularly occurring pop-up that takes places at the Storefront Gallery  in Ferndale (and other locations, occasionally), usually happens around dinner time, but this Sunday, July 27, there will be a special edition: Brunch Chef Matthew Baldridge, who’s resume includes stints at such Detroit greats as Cliff Bell’s, The Rattlesnake Club, and Seldom Blues, has crafted a menu of French-inspired items that employ locally procured ingredients. Brunch includes four courses where guests will be treated to such delights as cocoa, cinnamon, chili-spiced creamy grits with pickled strawberries, cocoa puffs and strawberry-infused syrup, a smoked gouda potato gallette with Faygo Root Beer braised pork belly, quail egg and Faygo Root Beer syrup, banana marscapone-filled French toast with fresh raspberries, whipped cream and balsamic syrup, and champagne-soaked strawberries. It is also important to note that brunch is BYOChampagne. Baldridge, along with The Storefront Gallery’s Derek John and Lilacpop Studio owner and artist Janna Coumoundouros, curate the event that includes an art show, a great playlist, and visuals. Brunch services are at 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. and last about two hours, only 20 seats are available at each service. The cost is $25 plus a service fee. The Storefront Gallery […]

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  • Jurassic 5 holds onto what’s golden

      By Ashley Zlatopolsky It’s been a little over twenty years since iconic ‘90s alternative hip-hop group Jurassic 5 first formed in Los Angeles’ Good Life club. Widely regarded as a pivotal influence in the decade’s underground hip-hop movement by critics and fans alike, the six-piece crew consisting of two DJs (Cut Chemist and DJ Nu-Mark) and four MCs (Akil, Zaakir, Marc 7 and Chali 2na) were well on their way to becoming one of hip-hop’s greatest and most powerful acts of all time, ranking alongside names such as Public Enemy and N.W.A. with socially-conscious lyrics and smooth beats paired with smart sampling. But in 2004, Cut Chemist left the group to pursue a solo career, and in 2007 Jurassic 5 completely called it quits after nearly 15 years of music. And that was it for the crew until 2013. After almost seven years apart (nine for Cut Chemist), Jurassic 5 reunited and re-emerged stronger than ever before with a new flair, seasoned attitude, and more vibrant energy at Coachella Music Festival, the group’s first show with the original six members since Cut Chemist split. During their performance, Jurassic 5 gave fans a memorable concert revisiting all the classic feel-good tracks […]

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  • Detroit Riverwalk west extension opens from Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks

    Dogs of Detroit have new territory to trot: Yesterday, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy held a soft opening for a 20-acre westward extension of the Riverwalk. Part of a planned two-mile track of the West Riverwalk, the new span runs from the Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks Boulevard, says Mark Pasco, director of communications for the conservancy. “It’s going to be great,” Pasco says. “It’s a wide open green space. It’s going to be great for activities.” The endgame for the Riverwalk, Pasco notes, is to extend the walkway from the Ambassador Bridge to Gabriel Richard Park, just past the MacArthur Bridge — about a 5.5. mile route. The new westward expansion is wider than most of the walkway, about 30 feet, says Pasco — a decision made by the conservancy to accommodate fisherman that previously frequented the area. “We knew … once it opened up they’d want to fish there again, so we made the Riverwalk itself wider,” Pasco says. The conservancy will hold a grand opening in late September, which will include “food and music and activities,” Pasco says, though no official date has been set.

    The post Detroit Riverwalk west extension opens from Riverfront Towers to Rosa Parks appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



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Best of Detroit 2011


Photo: Marvin Shaouni


Spend the Night - Staff Picks

From upscale cocktails to dives to rawk 'n' roll, our fave nocturnal haunts

Best candlelight creepy-crawly that connects Southfield to Charles Manson, Hollywood and the death of the '60s

Jay Sebring Gravesite
Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 25800 W. 10 Mile Rd., Southfield; 248-350-1900

It was America's crime of the century, one that absolutely horrified the country, killed its innocence and any idea of peace-and-love utopia. It said: You're not safe, not even in your own home. The murders also terrified Hollywood's music and acting elite, many of whom thought they were next.

Early morning on Aug. 9, 1969, at the behest of the 5-foot-2 Charles Manson, four fucked-up all-American kids — Susan Adkins, Charles "Tex" Watson, Patricia Krenwinkel and Linda Kasabian — scaled the fence at Roman Polanski's rented Beverly Hills house and remorselessly murdered Southfield's Jay Sebring, along with Polanski's pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, socialite coffee heiress Abigail Folger and her beau, and supposed drug dealer, Wojciech Frykowski, plus a teenager, Steven Parent, who happened to be leaving after visiting the groundskeeper.

Doris Day's son, Byrds producer Terry Melcher, had recently moved out of the house and has long been rumored to be the Manson family's original target. Melcher, at one point, offered to help Manson's budding music career at the behest of Beach Boy Dennis Wilson, but had pulled out.

Born in Birmingham, Ala., Oct. 9, 1933, Sebring (real name: Thomas John Kummer) grew up in Southfield with his parents, two sisters and a brother, and graduated from Southfield High. After a Navy stint in the Korean War, Sebring moved to L.A. His hairstyling skills soon transformed how people looked at the barber shop, and Sebring became the first male to ever open his own men's salon, which quickly expanded to Sebring International, with hair care boutiques in San Francisco, New York, London and West Hollywood.

Sebring set male coif standards, which became high-art in his hands, and he singlehandedly invented the idea of the hairstylist as international Playboy (he lived in Jean Harlow's old mansion, where Harlow's hubby Paul Bern had committed suicide), while fashioning the dos of Hollywood's who's who, including Warren Beatty, Kirk Douglas, Paul Newman, Frank Sinatra, Cliff Robertson and myriad others. He's the one who shaped Jim Morrison's mane into total rock-star perfection.

Sebring worked hair on film sets (including Spartacus) and helped launch Bruce Lee's career (Sebring introduced the unknown martial arts expert to TV producer William Dozier, who then cast him to star in TV's Green Hornet). Sebring even played himself once (as Mr. Oceanbring) on a Batman episode.

He married and divorced once (Cami, a model), and was later engaged to Tate, until she met Polanski on a Euro film shoot (The Fearless Vampire Killers). Sebring and Tate stayed close — it's said she was the love of his life.

During the murders, Sebring pleaded vainly with Watkins and Adkins to be gentle with Tate, who was 8-1/2 months pregnant, before he was shot, kicked in the face and stabbed seven times and had a rope tied around his neck (that connected to Tate's neck) while his ex-fiance could only watch in absolute horror. She then begged for her own life and that of her unborn child.

Sebring was buried at Holy Sepulchre in Southfield on Aug. 13, 1969. A fearful and gun-toting Steve McQueen eulogized the star-studded crowd. —Brian Smith


Best New Night in Royal Oak

Exchange Bureau Presents at Goodnite Gracie
222 S. Sherman Dr., Royal Oak;

Joshua Adams has held a Wednesday Night residency at this intimate cocktail club for a hot minute now, but he's breathing new air into the evening by showcasing his internationally recognized record label, Exchange Bureau Music. The evening is now a showcase of revolving musicians from the label's stable, with Adams himself on hand to lend two when needed. They've already featured DJ Godfather, DIAL81, Andy Toth and Brian Gillespie. In the coming weeks and months they'll feature none other than Piranha Head and Sinistarr. And we're keeping our fingers crossed for some SelfSays, Quest MCODY and Guilty Simpson. Hey, EXB, that sounds like a pretty dope set, come to think of it. ...


Best Rock 'n' Roll Venue for '80s Reminiscence

14238 Harper Ave., Detroit; 313-824-1700;

In the last 12 months, Faster Pussycat, LA Guns, Ratt, Stryper, Trixter and others of similar vintage and ilk have passed through the long-standing, tough-as-power-chords Harpos. Not exactly up-to-the-moment shows, are they? But so what? The club doesn't give a shit. Besides, Harpos knows you can't argue that their aging followers are steadfast in their undying loyalty and agree that it's far too lazy (and easy) to pick on '80s bands (and their retreating hairlines). And this venue — with it's arena-like sound, lights and killer sightlines — is so delightfully uncool that it's gone completely full circle and is now cool again. It's a proper rock 'n' roll venue. It's heaven for some, hell for others, but it is, as old Rob Halford would say, heaven and hell.


Best Place to Get Thrown Into (Not out Of)

3736 Third St., Detroit; 313-831-8949

The drinks are either weak or strong and it's advisable to gulp a series of shots down before venturing through Jumbo's doors (let's not even talk about the poopers), but there's certain charm that not even the cantankerous glass-empty day drunks, Wayne State "chill" hipsters and nightly regulars can argue doesn't exist. The bar staff is wink-wink friendly enough without being exactly warm, and like many heady Detroit neighborhood taverns — even those deep in Cass Corridor's bowels — the juke box is killer, as is the karaoke. We live in a city that has its priorities right, now don't we? For the record, this place has long been an MT fave.

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