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Stories written by W. Kim Heron

240 stories found. Showing page 1 of 8.

Tributaries: Jazz Fest looks back to greats, known and less-so

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/1/2010

Types: Music, Jazz

Pianist Horace Silver hasn’t performed in public for years. Betty Carter, Pepper Adams, Clifford Brown, Ray Brown and Donny Hathaway have been dead as long as a half-century. But their music — and thoughts on their music — will be at center stage over the weekend of the Detroit International Jazz F...[MORE]

More festive listening: With chops, Grammy awards even, if not the biggest names

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/1/2010

Types: Music, Jazz

The the Detoit Jazz Fest headliners are among some of the biggest names in jazz, blues and R&B, staring off opening night Friday with headliners Take 6 (featuring pianist Mulgrew Miller) and Tower of Power (at the Chase Main Stage, at Cadillac Square, starting at 6). Subsequent days deliver the ...[MORE]

Remembering Ron Allen: 'Godfather of open mics' and more

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/1/2010

Types: Arts, Literature

"Ron was one of the heroic figures of the Cass Corridor in the '70s and '80s," wrote one fellow poet, Tyrone Williams, at an online discussion board. "A true Detroit legend, a master and an excellent fellow and stalwart friend," artist Maurice Greenia Jr. wrote in an e-mail.  Th...[MORE]

1,500 issues and counting: Excerpts from 30 years of Metro Times

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 7/21/2010

Types: Cover Story

It seemed as if it would be easy, fun even: Flip through 30 years of Metro Times issues and come up with 30 stories to excerpt that tell the paper's story. Not necessarily the 30 biggest prize winners. Not necessarily the 30 that had the most impact. Not necessarily the best written. Just 30 that gi...[MORE]

Radical listening: Why a Social Forum? Why Detroit?

By W. Kim Heron, Curt Guyette

Published: 6/23/2010

Types: Cover Story

With Thousands of marchers headed down Woodward Avenue toward downtown as we went to press, the second United States Social Forum got under way Tuesday at noon. It's the culmination of more than a year of organizing by a number of groups in Detroit — and the next step for the international net...[MORE]

Pointing to freedom: African-American history by foot and by car

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 6/16/2010

Types: Culture, Lifestyle

The story of African-American Detroit — with its initiatives and acts of resistance, victories and setbacks — is hardly a story unto itself. In the context of our mini-tours, it could easily have included any number of music sites (more than just music: Motown, for instance, was America'...[MORE]

Studies in cool: Salim Washington on Miles, Trane, South Africa and coming home to Detroit

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 4/7/2010

Types: Music, Jazz

Salim Washington was hooked on music as a kid in Detroit, and, since then, the music has taken him to South Africa and South America, Northern Ireland and Paris, not to mention spots along "the underground 'chitlin circuit.'" In addition to his records as a leader and sideman, 2008 saw the...[MORE]

HereSay: Chatting with Tower of Power saxman (and native Detroiter) Emilio Castillo

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 3/17/2010

Types: Music, Jazz

Emilio Castillo spends about 175 days a year on the road with Tower of Power, a 42-year-old musical institution based in the Bay Area, where Castillo grew up after leaving Detroit as a kid. We caught up with him by phone at an airport, en route to a New Orleans gig where he'd no doubt play "Wha...[MORE]

Aught not: Music of the last decade

By Bill Holdship, W. Kim Heron

Published: 1/6/2010

Types: Music

SPIN Magazine seemed to be only half-serious, I think, when its writers chose "Your Hard Drive" as the No. 1 album at the end of 2000 — right above Radiohead's Kid A and our own Eminem's The Marshall Mathers Album. But it turned out to be one of the more astute musical observations o...[MORE]

Hanging around the scene: An obsessed photographer, eye-candy for crate diggers and a thousand lyrics

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 11/25/2009

Types: Arts, Literature, Books

The Jazz Loft Project: Photographs and Tapes of W. Eugene Smith from 821 Sixth Avenue 1957-1965 by Sam Stephenson Alfred A. Knopf, $40, 270 pp.  Sounds like a novel plot, doesn't it? In the late '50s, a world-famous (and drug-addicted) photographer retreats to a Manhattan building at the artsy in...[MORE]

Tread lightly: Juan Cole argues against sending lots of troops to Afghanistan

By Curt Guyette, W. Kim Heron

Published: 11/11/2009

Types: News, War

A history professor at the University of Michigan, Juan Cole's notoriety as a scholar focusing on Islam was largely confined to academic circles until 2002, when he began writing his Informed Comment blog. In the wake of the 9/11 attacks and the subsequent invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq by the Un...[MORE]

The jazz age: A roundup of redoubtable recordings

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/30/2009

Types: Music, Jazz

Gretchen Parlato In a Dream Obliqsound There's been plenty of buzz preceding this disc. Parlato won the 2004 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition and self-released a wonderful, self-titled debut disc. Now her sophomore effort on a "real" label delivers on the expectatio...[MORE]

Family affair: Tracing generations of jazz at this year's fest

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/2/2009

Types: Cover Story

The Detroit International Jazz Festival celebrates its 30th Labor Day weekend with a tagline of "Keepin' Up With the Joneses" and a theme of jazz families. Most notably, there's Hank Jones, the survivor of a mighty Pontiac bop triumvirate that comprised him and his late brothers Thad and E...[MORE]

Where jazz meets hip hop: Detroit-born Karriem Riggins grooves at the corner

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/2/2009

Types: Music, Jazz

A scene out of hip-hop history circa 1996: The venue is the 1,500-capacity House of Blues in Chicago, modeled loosely after a Prague opera house, a joint that's hosted artists from Aretha to the Who. But tonight it's a cavalcade of hip-hop stars. Lauryn Hill of the Fugees is there. De La Soul is the...[MORE]

The last king of swing: Gerald Wilson paints his hometown in sound

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/2/2009

Types: Music, Jazz

There's a Detroit in Gerald Wilson's head, and it's so vivid to him, that he can make you feel it as he talks, even though his Detroit is frozen in the 1930s, when he arrived here as a teenager busting out of the South.  He makes you feel it in another way, in the six-part suite that makes up his n...[MORE]

Life lesson: A tribute to Eric Dolphy — years in the making

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/2/2009

Types: Music, Jazz

Nearly a half century ago, an aspiring musician of 20 or so introduced himself to one of his heroes after a set at Detroit's famed Minor Key Lounge. When the young guy said that he'd begun flute lessons, the hero graciously handed his instrument over and said play. A half-hour's lesson ensued: How t...[MORE]

Jazz fest highlights: Some high notes among fest offerings

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 9/2/2009

Types: Music, Jazz

Praise for the elders: At 93, Hank Jones (Friday, 7:15 p.m.) is the sole surviving and eldest of three jazz greats from one extraordinary Pontiac family. Fittingly, a grand master among jazz pianists of any style, Jones is the first major performer of the festival. He'll be featured in a meet-the-ar...[MORE]

Rhythm corps: The sounds that changed the beat of America

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 7/29/2009

Types: Music, Ethnic/World

Olatunji! Drums of Passion Columbia Legacy Tito Puente Dance Mania  RCA Legacy Revisionism alert: The propulsive 2 and 4 of rock 'n' roll-rhythm and blues wasn't the only big beat shaking America from the doldrums of the late 1950s, and these recent reissues are the forceful reminder.  For Ex...[MORE]

When Joe Henry met Mose Allison: The former Detroiter is coaxing a legend back to the studio

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 7/22/2009

Types: Music, Blues

"Well, a young man, he ain't got nothing in the world these days." Or so a young man named Mose Allison sang in his backcountry half-sung, half-spoken twang in a New York studio in 1957, inaugurating a singular recording career. The song, then just "Blue Blues," on an album that ...[MORE]

World beaters: 20 years of musical invaders

By W. Kim Heron

Published: 7/15/2009

Types: Music, Ethnic/World

Ali Farka Touré was part of a guerrilla army of artists waiting to invade the States and Europe in the 1980s. All they needed was an opening. And when the ethnomusicologists' term "world music" was appropriated by the music marketers and promoters, the Malian guitarist and his cohor...[MORE]

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