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  • Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval

    In this week’s Metro Times we took a look at the state legislature’s role in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy — in particular, how it must approve a $350 million pledge for the so-called “grand bargain” to remain intact. And, with last night’s announcement of a significant deal between the city and Detroit’s pension boards and retiree groups, the ball is Lansing’s court now. The new deal, first reported by the Freep, would cut general employees monthly pension checks by 4.5 percent and eliminate their cost-of-living increases. Police and fire retirees would see no cuts to monthly checks, while their cost-of-living increases would be reduced from 2.25 percent to 1 percent. Under the original offer, police and fire retirees cuts were as high as 14 percent, with general retirees as high as 34 percent, that is, if the groups rejected the “grand bargain,” an $816 million proposal funded by foundations, the state, and the DIA to shore up pensions. The sweeter deal for pensions, though, it must be noted, entirely relies on the state legislature approving $350 million for Detroit’s bankruptcy.  And while this broke after Metro Times went to press, that was the focal point of this week’s News Hits column — so, it’s worth repeating: The […]

    The post Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday

    This Saturday, April 19, is Record Store Day, and there is plenty going on in metro Detroit and Michigan. Of special interest to us is Chiodos’ 7” single “R2ME2/Let Me Get You A Towel,” Mayer Hawthorne & Shintaro Skamoto’s 7” “Wine Glass Woman/In a Phantom,” Chuck Inglish & Action Bronson’s 7” “Game Time,” Chuck Inglish & Chance the Rapper’s 7” “Glam,” Chuck Inglish & Chromeo’s 7” “Legs,” Chuck Inglish, Mac Miller & Ab-Soul’s 7” “Easily,” James Williamson’s 7” “Open Up and Bleed/Gimme Some Skin,” Black Milk’s 12” “Glitches in the Break,” Mayer Hawthorne’s 10” “Jaded Inc.,” Wayne Kramer & the Lexington Arts Ensemble’s 12” “Lexington,” and best of all, Ray Parker Jr.’s 10” “Ghostbusters.” We wrote about James Williamson’s release this week. Go shop. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May

    Margaret Doll Rod will celebrate the release of her new EP, Margaret, with a show at PJ’s Lager House on Saturday, May 10. A statement reads, “The EP contains 3 new original songs and one Chrome Cranks cover with Italian actress Asia Argento singing background vocals. Margaret moved to Italy after the end of the Demolition Doll Rods where she still lives touring and performing festivals in Europe. The Dollrods were a Garage Rock force for over 20 years, opening for Iggy, Jon Spencer, The Scientist, The Monks and The Cramps. Margaret was the front person and principal songwriter for The Dollrods. Her chief musical foil was Danny Kroha, who joined the Demolition Doll Rods after the now legendary Gories called it quits. Margaret’s sister, Christine, on drums, rounded out the legendary trio. Margaret will do a special performance in the round that night with a 360 degree revolving stage and special guest DJ Adam Stanfel.” The bill will also feature the Stomp Rockets and the Volcanos. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Music review roundup

    Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to bcallwood@metrotimes.com. Ricky Rat’s Tokyo Pop/Glitter People (New Fortune) 7” single highlights all that’s great about the Trash Brats guitarist, but also his limitations. The man can write a bubblegum rock ’n’ roll song to match anyone in the city and most beyond. He’s also a killer guitarist, ripping out one throwaway riff after another with reckless abandon. He’s a machine. On his own though, without Trash Brats frontman Brian McCarty, his voice doesn’t have enough strength to do the songs justice. Not that you need to have the greatest voice in the world to sing this stuff – you don’t need to be able to perform vocal gymnastics – but you do have to be able to wail the tunes out. Both of the songs on this single are great, but you can’t help but wonder how much better they would sound with McCarty or somebody similar talking the mic. Still, as they are the songs are great fun. We’re just being picky. The Paper Sound’s Trajectories is a dense, atypically dark Americana-tinged album, unrelenting and […]

    The post City Slang: Music review roundup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes

    “Neighbors wanted.” That’s the message on the homepage of buildingdetroit.org, a new website launched by the City of Detroit today to auction off city-owned homes to prospective buyers who pledge to fix them up and move in. “We are moving aggressively to take these abandoned homes and get families living in them again,” Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement today. “There are a lot of people who would love to move into many of our neighborhoods. Knowing that other people are going to be buying and fixing up the other vacant homes at the same time will make it a lot easier for them to make that commitment.” The website to facilitate the auctions went live this afternoon. The first auction is scheduled to take place Monday, May 5. Officials said in a news release that one home will be auctioned per day, Monday through Friday. Fifteen homes are available for sale on the site, a dozen of which are in the East English Village neighborhood. Any Michigan resident, company, or organization that can do business in the state can bid, according to the website. Properties will be for sale for only one day, with bidding taking place from 8 […]

    The post Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes

    In case you haven’t heard, two of the biggest names in film, Steven Spielberg and John Williams, are collaborating to put on a benefit concert for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra this summer. In case you wanted to go- well, you’re too damn late. The DSO says tickets to the June 14 concert were snapped up in a record-breaking 15 minutes after they went on sale at 9 a.m. today. The DSO has since released this statement to fans who didn’t snag seats: Our apologies to everyone who was unable to buy tickets this morning for our historic benefit concert featuring John Williams and Steven Spielberg. Despite increasing our phone and internet system capacity for the day, a surge of hundreds of ticket buyers purchased tickets in a matter of minutes, filling the phone lines and temporarily maxing out our web servers. After a one-hour pre-sale made available to donors and subscribers at 8am, we released additional seats at 9am to the general public, including seats available for as low as $30. All seats sold out immediately. The concert program seems nothing short of top notch: Williams will conduct the orchestra as it performs some of his most iconic tunes, such […]

    The post Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Feature

Ballpark scores

We asked some fans to predict the season. Here's how the season and their predictions fared.

Photo: , License: N/A


 

WIN!!! FOR SURE. —jessica Care Moore, poet, creator Black Women Rock

 

If you predict that they'll make it to the playoffs and get past the divisional series, who will they face in the ALCS? Will they advance to the World Series? REALITY: They best the Yankees in ALCS.

 

Tigers will top the Yankees for the ALCS. Yankee fans will be asking themselves why don't we have Austin Jackson? Yankees fans will ask why did we ever give up Austin Jackson? —Charlie Langton

 

They'll face the Texas Rangers in a repeat of the 2011 ALCS, and this time should win it. In seven thrilling games too. —Bill Shea

 

Never bet against the Yankees to make the playoffs. Where they seem to lose to the Tigers. —Craig Fahle

 

If they make it, who will they face in the World Series? Can they beat them and win it all? REALITY: They'll face the San Francisco Giants. 

 

My fantasy match-up is the Tigers against the Phillies. A real Rust Belt Series. The Phillies have an incredible lineup in batting and some strong pitching but for two years in a row they haven't been able to close the deal in the postseason. So the Tigers would have a chance. —Celeste Headlee

 

My dream World Series match-up is Detroit-Philadelphia, so I'll predict that. What the hell, I'll say Tigers win in six. —Jeff Wattrick

 

Phillies vs. Tigers in World Series. Phillies would be favored, but what the heck — let's take the Tigers in 7. —Devin Scillian

 

Last year Verlander won 24 games. How many over or under 24 will he win in 2012? Or will he tie last year? REALITY: Under at 17-8.

 

Justin Verlander had one of the greatest seasons in history for a pitcher. ... No, he does not equal or surpass 24-wins. I'll say 21 (team has too much offense for him not to be close to 20, but can Valverde really be perfect again?) and in the mix for another Cy Young Award. —Matt Shepard

Verlander wins 19, goes 19-11. —Alan Madlane

 

He will be under this year, I say two under last year. He will win 22 games only because the bullpen will blow a few. —John Bennett

 

Under by two (22). —Devin Scillian

 

He'll win 19; five under. —Craig Fahle

 

 

He'll tie. —jessica Care moore

 

Justin Verlander will win 29 games ... 1 for every year of his age. —Charlie Langton

 

How long will Cabrera last at third base? REALITY: All season. 

 

Cabrera isn't a great third baseman, but I don't think he's the liability people think. He has a career .951 fielding percentage at third. The league average is .955. His range factor/9 is 2.55 and the league average is 2.70. I think those defensive numbers are sufficient to ensure a bona fide triple crown threat if he keeps his job at third for the entire season. —Jeff Wattrick

 

Until he botches a routine play that costs Verlander a victory. It would be easy to make a Happy Hour/Townsend Hotel joke here, but he's behaved himself so far, so let's cut him some slack. —Bill Shea

 

Jim Leyland is stubborn. Cabrera will play third base the whole season unless he gets hurt or unless Fielder gets hurt at first base, in which case Cabrera will play first base. —John Bennett

 

We'll put up with the shortcomings all year, except for late game defensive substitutions. It'll be worth it because he and Fielder are going to make it look like batting practice this year. —Devin Scillian

 

Not long. I predict he will blow it out there. —Celeste Headlee

 

He'll make it the full season. —Craig Fahle

 

Prince Fielder had 38 home runs last year. How many home runs over or under 38 will he score in 2012? Or will he tie last year. REALITY: 30 homers.

 

On paper, the Tigers' lineup is as potent as any in baseball, and Fielder should at least match his home run output. With Cabrera hitting in front of him, and Delmon Young after him, he could hit 40 or more homers for the first time since 2009. His career-high of 50 in 2007 is certainly possible. —Bill Shea

 

Personally, I'd like to see him hit at least 52 homers in the Old English D. Just to stick it to his old man. But I'll settle for 40. I think he's got a 40-home run season in him. —Jeff Wattrick

 

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