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October 2011

The Washtenaw County Events and Entertainment Monthly


sam valenti iv // @ispymagazine





734.485.9999 | 1000 N. Huron River Dr.



[the buzz] 06 07

Hanson, Chromeo, Vampires at Theo’s

08 10

Tastebuds, State Street Fashion Week

Fleet Foxes, Odd Future, Small Houses


Nervous but Excited, YpsiFest

[features] 15 20 22 25 30

Style in the City Ghostly International Vienna Teng Dragon Wagon Halloween Costume Ideas

[foodie] 12 13

Dragon Wagon + pg 25

Vienna Teng + pg 22

Adventures in Local Food #10 The Dish: La Dolce Vita, Wiard’s

[around you] 18

October Events Calendar

[review] 26 28

Rate it! - The Cut


New Look for Old Depot Town

Rate it! - Sounds

[depot town rag]

Halloween Costumes + pg 30

+Cover: Ghostly logo by Michael Cina PUBLISHER +


tim adkins

[designers] tim adkins, ashley strauss, gwen landrum, joey brandt [photographers] bruno postigo, kristin slater


[editor in chief] amanda slater [writers] amanda slater, tim adkins, stefanie stauffer, paul kitti, tom dodd, marissa mcnees, aimee mandle, joshua trent, mary simkins, david nassar, ian cruz

iSPY + The Washtenaw County Events and Entertainment Guide Pakmode Media + Marketing 124 Pearl st. Suite 407, Ypsilanti, MI 48197


© 2011, iSPY. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part granted only by written permission of Pakmode Media + Marketing in accordance with our legal statement. iSPY is free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. For additional copies you must be granted written permission, with a possible associated cost.

tim adkins / [business development] bilal saeed/


Style in the City + pg 15

The Last Saturday of Every Month Only in the Red Room at Necto

Dance. Love. Glow. October 29 Halloween Party Costume Contest 21+ $7

View Photos at // @ispymagazine





Motion City Soundtrack // St. Andrew’s / Sept. 23

Hanson // The Crofoot / Sept. 26 BY AIMIEE MANDLE

It’s been 14 years since “MMMBop” ripped through the Billboard charts and the Oklahoma trio known as Hanson became a household name. Since then, the band has garnered a few Grammy nominations and been leaders in countless humanitarAfrica. The group also launched their own independent record company in 2003 after

album’s upbeat songs also featured special guests like Funk Brothers bassist Bob Babbitt, while showcasing the band’s appreciation for old school soul, pop and R&B. The band has been touring ever since. Hanson will be performing at the Crofoot Ballroom in Pontiac on September 26. The show kicks off at 7 p.m., with tickets starting at $30. Attendees can even request a meet and greet session on the trio’s website:

release their third album. In summer 2010, Hanson released their latest album, “Shout It Out,” on their label 3CG Records. The

Chromeo & Mayer Hawthorne // Majestic Theater / Sept. 26 BY DAVID NASSAR Combining the hard-driving dance grooves of P-Thugg and the smooth, soulful voice of heating up the Majestic Theater on September 26 with Ann Arbor-native, Mayer Hawthorne. Chromeo started blowing up after their 2007 release, “Fancy Footwork,” but really entered

BY MARISSA MCNEES group Motion City Soundtrack. As part of its “4 Albums. 2 Nights. 7 Cities.” tour, the group will be performing two back-to-back shows on September 23 and 24 For all you music fans out there, be sure to check this out this one-of-a-kind show. The band will be playing each of their four

Before releasing their next studio album in Spring 2012, Motion City Soundtrack plans to use this tour and a string of other shows as a way to look back at all their other previously-recorded material before moving forward with the new album. Tickets for the “4 Albums. 2 Nights. 7 Cities.” Tour can be purchased at

Vampires and Virgins // Theo’s / Oct. 27

Turn the Lights On,” was featured on the FIFA 11 video game. After playing to international audiences at festivals like Coachella, Bonnaroo, Rothbury and Lollapalooza, they’re hitting The

BY MARISSA MCNEES known as Haircut / sometimes-retro-soulcrooner known as Mayer Hawthorne. As usual, Hawthorne will be joined by his ever-revolving collection of backing musicians known as “The County.” And you can expect that both acts will bring their catchy, infectious tunes along with a healthy dose of Biz Markie-esque playfulness. Tickets are $31.50, and the show starts at 8 p.m.



If you’re looking for a place to start your Halloween weekend off right, check out college night at Theo’s on Thursday, October 27. As always, there will be prizes given out to the best cos-

Fitting in with the theme will be “True Blood” drink specials all night, and to capture the memories of what is sure to be the best Halloween yet, a photo booth will be available on site. Cover is $3 for 21-and-up and $6 for those who are 18 – 20. See you there! //



Fleet Foxes // Hill Auditorium / Sept. 29

Seattle folk sensation Fleet Foxes will be at Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor on September 29 with indie rock band The Walkmen. The night will likely feature many songs from Fleet Foxes’ sophomore album, “Helplessness Blues,” hailed by critics as “darker, though just as assured” as previous work (Pitchfork). If you’ve never seen the band live, it’s a wonderful experience as the band’s personality and rapport makes them seem like your old friends – your

extremely talented, though modest, old friends. Every once in a while they’ve even been known to treat the audience to an impromptu a cappella harmony. Be sure to come early to see the Walkmen as well. If you haven’t heard them before, the band employs vintage instruments such as the upright piano, lending a timeless feel to indie rock.

Small Houses // Dreamland Theater / Oct. 9 BY IAN CRUZ

can be purchased online at vendini. com.

Odd Future // Royal Oak Music Theater / Oct. 16 BY IAN CRUZ

Earning his self-proclaimed swag Artist,” Tyler, the Creator began turning heads with his offensive lyrics and near cynical video “Yonkers,” released this past February. After the release of his debut record, “Bastard” (2009), labels from every avenue were looking into Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (OFWGKTA)—who some are calling this generation’s NWA. According to the New York Post, just to get a meeting with Tyler and Co. for a -

Beats, made a wave of noise with their performance of “Sandwiches” from the album “Goblin” (2011).

Theater. With a couple punches thrown by Hodgy towards an audience member for throwing bottles on stage, Tyler threw his shirt off in rage telling the audience the set was over. But luckily for their fanbase in Michigan, this incident isn’t stopping them from coming back this month on their GOLFWANG tour at Royal Oak Music Theatre on October on OFWGKTA, they have signed with

swivel chairs and a megaphone. That’s just one of dozens of reports on how maniacal these guys can get. For his

create their own label, Odd Future Rethe next Tyler, the Creator album to drop sometime in early 2012.

and co-member of OFWGKTA, Hodgy // @ispymagazine

This month will see light for the sophomore release from Flint natives Small Houses with “North,” a collaborative effort fronted by singer-

Sound” caught attention all around the Midwest in 2010, arranges new songs with the help of musicians from bands such as The Go Rounds, Frontier Ruckus, Samantha Crain and more. The 10 song record will include

commented, “Launching with a few ing. …This is the best kind of entertainment.” The forthcoming record “North” was recorded at Backseat Productions in Ann Arbor by Keith Kinnear as well as The Lake House by

“North” will be released on October 6 North” EP, which came out earlier this year, as well as new tracks such as “In the Lawn” and “I and My Maker,”

for only $5, which will be followed up

a reputable name for themselves as their live shows are described as fan-

October 9 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $5, and all ages are welcome. For more information, visit smallhousessing. com.






Bringing Musical Kindred Spirits Together BY AIMIEE MANDLE

Over the last few years, the dating scene has become an interesting playground of options. Some people hook up through friends and acquaintances, a good portion check out online dating sites and others Facebook stalk after hitting the bar (okay, maybe just a few of us). Either way, it can be hard ests. And, for those who are serious music lovers, the wrong preferences can be a deal breaker or end a budding romance before it has even begun. Luckily, an online dating website that focuses on musical preferences was launched last year. allows you to input three or more bands that you love as well as your age range, location and gender into its interface, and it delivers potential matches according to these criteria. But, in order to get in contact with a match, you’ll have to sign up through the site or go through your last.

fm account.

Girls, Aqua and Extreme as my music tastes. I Atmosphere, Ryan Adams and the Reindeer Seca fair amount of results, but it was my “serious”

swapped out Spice Girls for Creed and my results doubled. There were actually men out there who loved both Aqua and Creed equally – granted, a majority of them lived in Brazil. Even more so, my matches quadrupled once I added in bands that have recently trended among music connoisseurs. As a free service, there is little to lose by browsing and entering your own favorites. So, if you’re looking for a hip alternative to dating, give Tastebuds a try.

Each page showed nine matches—complete with an age, location, picture and short autobiography for each match. The more bands you add, the more concise your results will be. Interestingly enough, it doesn’t matter what you have listed, as there is bound to be someone out there that shares your love. I

State Street Fashion Week Celebrating Ann Arbor’s Style


It’s no secret that Ann Arbor is home to from fashion-forward cities ranging from New York to Los Angeles can be found on every block downtown. Toss in some Midwest trends and you’ve got an eclectic array of what’s what in the fashion world. The State Street Area Association is


in this year’s State Street Fashion Week, which will take place from October 17 - 22 at various retailers and venues within the State Street Association. The main attraction and headlining event for the State Street Fashion Week will be a free fashion show at the Michigan Theater on October 18. Collections from Ann Arbor retailers, local models and a bevy of who’s who will showcase the area’s best fall looks.


There will be daily prizes and giveaways including free parking in the city structures with validation from participating retailers. Also on the list of events is a celebration of some of the most reputable and recognizable names in the Ann Arbor fashion 90th anniversary, Bivouak and Renaissance will both have events for their 40th anniversaries and All About Blue will ring in 2011 with their 10th anniversary. free fashion show and take advantage of some of the deals happening throughout the week. For more information about State Street Fashion Week, participating retailers, dates and special events, check out the State Street Area Association’s Facebook page at //

Hours Mon. - Sat. 10a-6p Sun. 12p-5p Additional hours gladly by appt. Concierge service available 5 Nickels Arcade Ann Arbor, MI48104 (734) 327 - 9001 // @ispymagazine





YpsiFest 2011 will be taking place October 12 – 15 at Woodbands will kick off the fest at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, October 12. Thursday and Friday will feature 10 bands on each night, starting at 7 p.m. Then Saturday will kick off at 6:30 and feature 11 bands. That’s 39 bands in 4 days!

Wednesday, Oct 12: Lawless Carver Sisters of Your Sunshine Graders Phantasmagoria Kickstand Band The Ashleys S.N.A.F.U. 2194

Friday, Oct 14: Easy Action Big Mess

Nervous but Excited Glossies Blue Snaggletooth Congress Buttonsphere

Saturday, Oct 15: Thursday, Oct 13: Lettercamp Pupils Telecollision Passalacqua Carjack Pat Elkins and the Rainbow Family Pewter Cub The EEKs

Chapstik Beggars Isosceles Mountain FUR Pink Lightning Err... Crappy Future Red Iron Orchestra Copper Thieves Sharky and the Habit Mare Crisium

For more info visit their Facebook page, search YpsiFest. There photos from past YpsiFests and more.


Seven Years Later and Still Going Strong


BY MARISSA MCNEES PHOTO BY BRENT HARREWYN With a new record out this month and a seven-week tour on the horizon, Sara Cleaver and Kate Peterson of Nervous But Excited have a lot to be, well, excited about. Their latest record, “You Are Here,” will be will get to preview the record on October 14 when the band will host and perform at their album release party at the Ark in Ann Arbor. “This was a great record to make,” Cleaver said. “We went into this record very intentionally, in a way we hadn’t done as much with any of the records before.” The duo’s intent was to build upon each song and eventually record with an entire band. “You Are Here” features NBE along with some of Michigan’s best local talent, including Chris Bathgate, Frontier Ruckus and Theo Katzman. “We are, at our core, a duo, but we wanted to feature many different perspectives on this record,” Cleaver said. “We got to work with people that we love and respect so much – people that we’re fans

of ourselves – and it was just the most awesome feeling.” The release party at the Ark will showcase just how much hard work Cleaver and Peterson have put into making “You Are Here” unlike any record they have put out before, and, according to the band, fans in attendance will get to experience the record they way it was meant to be experienced—live in a small, intimate venue. “Playing at the Ark is not like playing at any other venue,” Peterson said. “The people in this area are so great, and it’s just an awesome feeling to have the fans laugh with us because we like to laugh and have a great time while we’re playing. It’s a give and take with the fans in this area, and that’s why we love playing here so much.” To pre-order “You Are Here” or to order tickets for the album release party, visit //


adventures in local food #10

The Global in the Local

ARTICLE AND PHOTOS BY STEFANIE T. STAUFFER Our value systems shape our consumption patterns as our consumption patterns shape our value systems. This holds true whether you are someone who buys locally-grown food, “ethical” coffee, and Michigan-made products or if you are someone who shops at global chains where almost all the products are made at “low-cost” industrial factories in China. In last month's installment, we investigated this connection between values and purchases, concluding that we have the power to effect positive change in our food system (as in our local economies) by taking more ownership over our daily food choices and by challenging ourselves to patronize more local businesses. So make no mistake about it. Our actions do have an impact. It's often not the one we would like because of how our society valorizes material gain in ways that allow Heinz to have an “organic” ketchup made with lab-derived high fructose corn syrup or that encourages the de-regulation of a GMO strain of corn destined to be Ethanol. But, that positive impact is very much possible once we are aware of what systemic constraints we are up against and where our own motivations lie. Too often we think our individual purchases happen in a vacuum or that our actions have no impact on the local, national or global economy. We are even actively encouraged by the media, advertising, politicians and our peers to consume in the very ways that are most detrimental to our communities and to our personal health—and all because we are told that consuming in those ways is “cheaper.” So remember—the only time when those mass-produced, ubiquitously-available items are cheaper is at the moment of purchase, since those “low” prices are achieved by downgrading environmental standards while simultaneously cutting wages, worker protections and product long-term environmental, economic, social and political costs of producing those items are hidden from view by their misleading price tags. I know that's a lot to digest all at once (both



overwhelmed by all the negativity out there in our economic and political systems, I encourage you all to instead see the positive in all of this. For example, ever since 2007 (when I started my work with urban farming and the local food movement in both California and the Rustbelt), I have observed people's interest in locally-sourced food and locally-made products grow by leaps and bounds. I have watched as more and more community gardens and farmer's markets popped up, supported by the ever-popular “Buy Michigan” movement, as I have noted how many grocery stores have begun to carry more local and/or “green” products. Here in Washtenaw County, I have seen the acutely positive impact that installing backyard raised bed vegetable gardens can have on people's health, happiness, cooking skills and even on community cohesion. I have also observed the same types of things happening in Boston, California, the Caribbean, Kansas City, New Mexico, Oregon, Ontario, the Caribbean, Italy, Switzerland, Australia and many countless other places across the U.S., Europe and the Globe. And it's not just me. I've spoken with countless people that have noticed the same things. This global reach of the local food movement is

incredibly inspirational—especially given how two short years ago I worked with youth who didn't even know that potatoes grew in the ground (I wish I was joking). So take pride in your local purchases! And keep in mind that, although we share these exciting developments with many places across the globe, the local food movement in Michigan is unique in part because of the role played by season extension technologies. Next time we'll we can grow food 49 weeks out of the year here in Michigan without having to grow hydroponically, in a heated greenhouse, or under grow lights in folks from Michigan State University, the Michigan Mercy Hospital, Growing Hope and even Ann Arbor's SELMA Cafe are taking a cue from farmer Eliot Coleman and building the passive solar hoophouses needed to make year-round local food in Michigan a reality. //



a romantic date to a classy night out with friends. Connected to the Chop House in downtown Ann desserts, drinks and more—from sweets prepared by the restaurant’s own pastry chef, to cognacs or single a cigar bar, featuring hand-rolled cigars and a relaxing setting decorated with leather and wood furniture. Tartar, an appetizer that features a blend of tuna and avocado served with tortilla chips. It was the perfect dish for those who are looking for something light,

chocolatey dessert that is best described as part pie and part chocolate candy. The combination of exquisite food and calming kick back and relax after a long day at work, celebrate a special occasion, go out for an intimate date or to catch up over drinks and desert with a friend.

Wiard’s Orchard Washtenaw county’s go-to spot for fun, food and fear BY MARY SIMKINS Those interested in the history of local Michigan businesses would be fascinated to learn that Wiard’s Cider Mill and Apple Orchard has been owned and operated by the same family (the Wiards) for 174 years and counting. That’s seven generations of Wiards, and, according to Special Events Coordinator Rose Timber, “the eighth generation is now hanging around the orchards and eating the donuts.” The eighth generation won’t be taking over too soon, though – the oldest is just six years old. Founded by George Wiard in 1837, Wiard’s Cider Mill and Apple Orchard moved to its current location in Ypsilanti Township during World War II, when a bomber plant was built near its old location by Willow Run Airport. In the 1950s, Wiard’s added its farm market and remodeled it in the 1960s into its current Country Store and Bakery featuring old-fashioned baked goods, jams, candles and a // @ispymagazine

full of history, and – just as importantly – a place full of fun. Now in her twenty-sixth year with Wiard’s, Rose Timbers has had time to form her opinions on the products, so when she recommends the caramel apples as her favorite thing to eat, I listen. “We have the absolute best caramel apples,” she says. “They’re incredible. We have a staff of four people who come in and all day long all they do is hand dip the apples. Then we roll them in nuts, and this year we’re adding chocolate chips.” Of course, there are also plenty of other delicious treats, including and apple). But there is more to do at Wiard’s than eat – with family-friendly activities such as apple-picking and hayrides, you could spend the whole day there. And stick around in the evening, because Wiard’s is home to Michigan’s Premier Terror Park, “Night Terrors.” There are six different attractions to scare

your pants off, including the Haunted Barn, The Asylum, The Labyrinth, The Mindshaft, Hayrides of the Lost and Alien Clown Encounter. “The sixevent package is the most popular package,” says Timbers. “And with the store open and karaoke at night, people stay here quite late. We have an event contest called “Best Event of the Evening” which we have every night and we never know who will win.” The three most popular haunts are the Ultimate Haunted Barn, the Mindshaft and the Asylum.” Weekend evenings in October feature haunted

25 or more can schedule in advance for a private Learn more about Wiard’s Cider Mill and Apple Orchard at




Mouthwatering Prime Rib, Bison Burgers, USDA Angus Steaks, Chicken, Pork, Fish, Seafood and Fresh Salads HAPPY HOUR Mon-Fri, 3-6pm

(888) 456-3463 | 2000 Commonwealth Blvd. Ann Arbor, MI 48105 at Plymouth Road


i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //


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i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //

// AROUND YOU // @ispymagazine





“We put a lot of value into the graphic design and the covers, some of which are interpretations of paintings. […] We try to do things that are interesting to us and the staff, things that are artistically valid.”

Setting the Pace with Ghostly International


i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //


BY PAUL KITTI PHOTOS BY BRUNO POSTIGO I was so enthralled in my discussion with International that I forgot to ask where the name came from. But considering the Ann Arbor-based record label’s eerily polished taste in music and makes perfect sense to me. converted Tech Brewery in Ann Arbor, just north of downtown, the Ghostly International headquarters gave me a good sense of what this label is about before I even began my research. Surrounded by trees, seated at higher ground level than the

the city through the north, I got the impression I was at some top secret factory where dangerously revolutionary ideas were being generated. My imagination tends to over-emphasize things, but I really wasn’t too far off this time.

that was further characterized by shelves of vinyl records, newspaper clippings and an assortment of artistic collectibles. If you’ve visited the label’s website, you know that they revere visual art on the same level as music—and the look and feel of their headquarters drove the point home. “It’s meant to be a melding of experience,” says Licensing and Business Affairs. “We put a lot of value into the graphic design and the covers, some of which are interpretations of paintings. […] We try to do things that are interesting to us and the staff, things that are artistically valid.” when he was an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, expands on the reasoning behind this vision: “The way art movements have come and gone, their rise and fall and then resurgence, is very much how pop culture works. […] As a culture, we are obviously in a place of musical nostalgia, picking and choosing different historical styles to cull from. It's as if music has become // @ispymagazine

more of a reference point than a pure expression sometimes, but that's what's interesting about it, and popular styles.” It’s this kind of vision – one involving an awareness of the temporality of cultural preferences – that has driven the label from an ambitious dorm room project to an internationally renowned and respected guiding force in the music industry. It is not the world’s largest label – nor does it intend to be – but it’s certainly one of the fastest growing and perhaps the most unique. My impression of Ghostly is that it’s like the most exclusive club of music labels. It isn’t hosting the largest party – there are some massive block parties going on around the corner – and you have no idea what exactly is happening inside. But the people entering and exiting are eccentrically fashioned, almost other-worldly, and you can faintly hear the music from outside. And what beautiful music it is. But what kinds of artists can get past the bouncers? “We look for somebody who isn’t doing the same thing everyone else is,” says Peters. “You can kinda tell when someone would or wouldn’t work on the label. The ones we sign are the ones that have an artistic vision for themselves. It’s a lot easier for us to help support someone who has a clear vision of what they want to be as an artist and how they want to be portrayed. It comes out in artwork and how they perform on stage and the way the record sounds and is promoted. […] You’re ultimately trying to tell a story, and when there’s a strong vision behind that story, it’s easier to tell.” Ghostly International houses one of the most densely talented collections of artists I’ve seen from a single label. Their astute selectiveness guarantees that fans seeking a high-quality music

not only sound, but overall expression. and heavy creativity to represent the label and, more importantly, themselves, on a world stage,” helped mold Ghostly’s image. Now, that image is supported by a host of materials that join the artists to form the entirety of Ghostly’s unique appeal. Stylish bags, a slick alarm clock, creative desktop backgrounds and studio headphones that were “tested and tweaked by 28 of the world’s most products offered on the label’s online store. And, for those who aren’t yet familiar, Ghostly International has developed one of the coolest – if not revolutionary – iPhone Apps out there. The free discovery tool” that automatically composes playlists based on the combination of your current mood and taste, which you set using color-coated meters. The music is drawn from Ghostly’s catalog of artists and is an ideal way to explore the range of sounds they offer. It’s no secret: music labels sign the artists who has taken the place of talent and innovation as the determining factor in an artist’s potential career in music, and those who understand how the industry works no longer scratch their heads when they hear recycled pop melodies on the radio and brilliant compositions in small, unknown

we’re already starting to notice a shift towards music that is grounded in creative expression and propelled by distinct vision. It’s a good thing there is at least one label ready to accommodate.

sparkling, genre-transcending School of Seven Bells, Ghostly’s roster is composed of artists on the front lines of musical exploration, in terms of





The Double Life of Vienna Teng U of M student and environmentalist by day, renown singer/songwriter by night. Teng’s journey from the of Facebook.

BY AMANDA SLATER as she is better known), was an imaginative little girl who wrote songs about topics like the role of curiosity in building civilization. “I was a really big idea kid,” she laughs. When she was young she made a promise to herself that she’d never write any love songs. “Of course, that was before I went to high school,” she says. And, although Teng ended up breaking that promise, she says that she still doesn’t write that many love songs. Instead, she writes songs from the perspective of others—songs that tell a story. She also says that she still writes the kinds of songs that she did when she was six. “I just try to be a little more subtle, but it’s pretty much the same topics,” she says.

in the music that I liked.” She chose “Teng” simply because it was a Chinese name that sounded bet-

that writings songs is something I can do because I’d seen somebody do that,” she says. Teng was trained in classical piano and voice. Although she said that her 12 years of piano lessons gave her an appreciation for the technique and discipline that goes into creating music, she says voice lessons were less helpful because the voice is an instrument that can’t be seen. However, she “found her way around her voice” by singing in choir groups and playing in coffeehouses. Teng’s dedication to her music paid off, though.

good theories about my last name,” she says. “There’s a legendary singer in China named Teresa Teng, and she’s basically the only western style

the bestsellerlist, and her second album “Warm Strangers” peaked at No. 2. In 2003 man. Since then, she has appeared on CBS’ Early

stage name before she had ever actually visited



singer the communists allowed to perform during the time they were in power. There was a saying that goes, ‘The communist party rules China by day, but Teresa Teng rules it by night.’ There were a lot of people who thought I named myself in honor of her, but I only found out about that later.” Teng says that she doesn’t come from a musical family—or, at least, that her family wouldn’t claim to be musical, although she says that her father learned three chords on the guitar when he was in college so that he could write songs for her mom. Teng remembers hearing him play the songs once in a while when she was growing up and he was //

// FEATURE Show, NPR’s Weekend Edition, CNN’s NewsNight with Aaron Brown and The Wayne Brady Show. Baez to Madeleine Peyroux. mances that she did were “terrifying.” “Playing on Letterman was so surreal. I spent the whole time just blocking out that I was really there because I didn’t know what would happen if I really realized what was going on,” she says. Although Teng grew up in California and spent some time living in New York, her pursuit of education has landed her in Ann Arbor, Mich. where she attends U of M, pursuing a master’s degree in sustainable business. “Sustainable business is a classic intersection between a business mindset and environmental impact because it’s one of the very few things we can do environmentally speaking that actually saves us money,” she says. “I wanted to be one of the people making something happen on a kind of large scale.” Teng was able to take her sustainable business knowledge and apply it at Facebook’s new facility during a summer internship. “Facebook is moving into this new campus.

to come up with numbers like how much carbon dioxide we are going to prevent from going into the atmosphere and what the equivalent of that is in terms of cars that we are permanently taking off the road—and how much money we are going to save the company at the same time.” Now that Teng is back in Ann Arbor, she’s enjoying settling back into classes. But she’s also looking forward to her upcoming show at the Power Center. I think it will be really fun,” she says. “One of the best things about my life in the past year or so is the feeling that I get to move between these two worlds, and the energy from one feeds the other. Taking classes and learning things has really been great for helping me to feel creative and really be able to be present when I’m performing music. Similarly, the joy I get from sharing music with people in that live concert setting gives me a lot of energy to do all of the other stuff I do during the week.” Center in Ann Arbor. Tickets are $30. For more information, visit

“Playing on Letterman was so surreal. I spent the whole time just blocking out that I was really there because I didn’t know what would happen if I really realized what was going on.”

a really cool project,” she says. “We actually got // @ispymagazine




College Night @


October 27

Every THursday 9pm - 2am

cover: $3 for 21+ $6 for 18-20 vampires and virgins

Costume contest Trueblood Shots Russell brand


Lupe Fiasco Ticket giveaway

check out happy hour starting at 5pm mon-sat

Weekly Specials Mon mon tues tues wed Wed fri Fri VIP NIght, $.25 beers til 11pm DJ at 10pm Cover: $6 and $10

improv night, skits and games. doors at 5pm, show at 9:30pm hot wings and cold brews. no cover from 5pm - 9pm

Available for private parties on the Weekends

country night, with dj cody featuring margaritas

Theo's is located at 705 w. cross st - ypsilanti, mi 48197 734.485.6720 find us on facebook


Home Sweet Home Dragon Wagon Rolls Back Home after a Summer on the Road BY DAVID NASSAR PHOTO BY BRUNO POSTIGO

In a time when rock n’ roll is on life-support and pop music still dominates the radio, it seems that roots and bluegrass music has had new life breathed into it in recent years. And thanks to the popularity of summer festivals like Electric Forest, “Our goal over the next year is to get at least one new song out every month for people to download. We plan to release four EP’s and then, at the end of that period, put together a compilation album as sort of a greatest hits LP.”

Michigan has established itself at the forefront of this revival. One of the most creative acts to ride this wave

Schneider and Troy Stanley Radikin (mandolin/

who describe their sound as “Bluegrass folk rock with a shot of Irish whiskey.” Putting on one of the most infectious and dance-friendly shows around, the Midwest—including numerous regular gigs in their hometown of Ann Arbor—and ending their 3,500 mile journey at Electric Forest in Rothbury, Mich. “It was more incredible than you could ever imag-

some of the bands and people we’ve been idolizing for a long time was such a great experience.” Signing on with the Ann Arbor-based label, self-titled LP and a live album recorded at The Ark. But there is plenty more on the horizon. “We’re a


“Even when we go into the studio, we cut everything live.” This live sound is evident in their latest single, “County Line,” available for download at Oddfel-

debrandt (bass) and Fitz McGirr (percussion). “We pretty much came together through friends and being involved in the local music scene,” says from U of M music school, and, from there, it all just kind of happened.” Occasionally covering tunes from folk/bluegrass legends like Norman Blake, Buck Owens and The variety of places. “We all listen to different kinds of music,” says Schneider, “and we look for ways to incorporate it into what we do as a band.” When asked what was playing in their cars on the way to their show later that night at Circus, it was obvious that they are devout followers of the local music scene, each mentioning bands along the lines of Macpods. That is, with one exception. “Unfortunately, I don’t have a radio or anything in my car at this point,” laments Radikin, laughing. “But maybe I’ll be able to get one after a few more shows.” When asked about the seemingly rejuvenated

“I think a lot of the popularity of [folk and bluegrass music] in this area has to do with the whole localism and organic movement, and I think acoustic music kind of goes hand-in-hand with that. People are anxious just to take it back to the roots.” folk/bluegrass scene in Michigan, the band says that they are seeing it all over the country. “Nationally, you’ve got bluegrass bands that are really coming out and doing well like The Avett Brothers and Mumford & Sons,” says Schneider. “And I think it goes beyond just music,” suggests Ladio. “I think a lot of the popularity of it in this area has to do with the whole localism and organic movement, and I think acoustic music kind of goes hand-in-hand with that. People are anxious just to take it back to the roots.” Including regular gigs at The Ark, the band was particularly excited about two upcoming shows when I spoke with them—the annual Earth Tones September 22 at The Ark and an October 15 show with the Kalamazoo-based band, Funktion, at Gracies in Ann Arbor. You can also catch upcoming shows on October 6 at Wolverine Brewing Company and on November 2 during Bluegrass Night at Circus in downtown Ann Arbor. their latest single, “County Line,” visit OddFellowan exclusive live video of the band performing “County Line,” visit

JUNE 2011






ARTIST: Red Hot Chili Peppers ALBUM: I’m With You 5/5 TOWERS BY PAUL KITTI The opener to the Chili Peppers tenth studio album, “Monarchy of Roses,” plays like a four minute audio trailer for the California foursome’s twenty-eight-year mission of bottling up the untamed scene of anyone who fancies wildly moving rock music and craves a taste of the ferocious, California live-for-the-moment lifestyle. It begins with some pre-jam instrumental banter, like a thick smoky cloud of years. But once they get moving, you realize you’ve forgotten how fast they can really go. Frontman Anthony Keidis (does he really need an introduction?) enters the scene like he just woke up from a nap in the “One Hot Minute” studio, his vocals reminiscent of the dark, highly-charged drug anthem “Warped.” Superstar bassist Flea silently rocks the air bass with Keidis and drummer Chad Smith rides along the vocals with the storm-summoning percussion we’ve come to expect from the veteran. It’s a little worrisome until the chorus arrives and the stars align simply because the band wants them to. Flea’s bass immediately sends my ears on vacation, and Klinghoffer’s back-up vocals and Stratocaster strumming are the products of inspiration—which is the most you can ask from someone who has been beckoned to Chad Smith, and Keidis does what he’s always done best and no one else can do: condense into one chorus the biography of some worldweary female character that you wish you knew because she’s seen everything and lived through it (and she’s special enough for the Chili Peppers to write a song about her). Keidis is at the point where he doesn’t need detailed lyrics to paint a portrait of the California sun dipping beneath the highway or an angel descending in south L.A. to deliver one of the city’s sons from man for the less shiny corners of The Golden State, his voice is simply what California sounds like to people who haven’t been there. This advantage lends some consistency to an album full of lyrics that range from clever and moving to lazy and ambiguous. “I like your cheeky well, so mose and peaky…” he semi-raps at the album’s mid-

ARTIST: Lil Wayne ALBUM: Tha Carter IV 2/5 TOWERS BY AIMEE MANDLE Named one of the most anticipated rap some enormous expectations—and rightfully so, after its long awaited release. In the meantime, fan were given a handful of mixtapes and two average studio albums. But, now that it’s here, it is hard to say whether this album hits the same vein as its predecessor. But, although Weezy’s music and career seems to have slowed down a little, it does hit some of the same notes. “6 Foot 7 Foot” has Lil Wayne spitting out verses over pulsing beats, while

to tease sense out of the lyrics, and songs like “Police Station” and best of them (when he feels like it). “I’m With You” represents a band that has still got it, but not a band slightly-aged faces out from, well, wherever they’ve been for the past ing and they have no interest in putting down their instruments. And that’s okay because they occupy a place in music that no one else



pops in. “How to Love” is an unexpected ballad that will have you grooving in the car, and “President Carter” takes

open up like a classic rock opera and break into beats overlaying strings, with Lil Wayne slipping back into his normal routine. “Nightmares of the Bottom” isn’t nearly as sinister as it sounds, using an

unhurried cadence as its basis. Overall, it is apparent that Weezy’s heart just isn’t in this album. Whether it can be attributed to his stint in jail or a continuous effort to recreate his sound, it just isn’t the same as it once was. His previous work displayed his awareness for sharp lyricism and solid beats – that is until we reached the “Rebirth” era. Since then, we’ve been delivered a few things to chew on, but nothing that is wholly reminiscent of Weezy in his prime when he was able to spin verses that were loaded with imagery that came off as effortless. And the tracks on “Tha fall short on his rhymes. While we do get glimpses of Weezy’s glory days here and there throughout the album, there isn’t enough to prove that he’s out of the woods yet. It could be another album or two before Lil Wayne’s focus returns to music and we are able to appreciate what he brings to the table again. //


rate it+++

Album: Watch the Throne Artist: Jay-Z & Kanye West 5/5 TOWERS BY PAUL KITTI

You need to take a giant step back from the glistening, golden album art of “Watch the Throne” in order to gain a more appropriate perspective of what exactly is happening with this release. To your far right, you have the iTunes bonus tracks excellent before. This project is something a little different—like the shadowy point their bats before pulling back for the swing. Anyway, to your far left, you have album opener “No Church in the Wild,” which is a far, ominous cry from lead single “Otis,” a sparkling, one-thousand-foot tall, ego-honoring statue in the form of a hip-hop song. Somewhere in the middle you have the bulk of the album, a weighty, mysterious collection of songs that must have been tamed or bribed or forced down with their hands extended, ready to take your $9.95 in exchange for the little golden box they present. And you’re going to give it to them (if you haven’t already), and I’ll tell you why. accessibility. You don’t have to be a scavenger in the secret basement of hip-hop to know who they are. And, for a lot of people, their interest in the genre doesn’t extend beyond these two monsters of the industry. It’s kind of like how people who aren’t really fashion experts wear North Face jackets or Ugg boots—having this album on your iPod is hip, to put it simply. And really, some people are more worried about not having this album than they are excited about having it—just like jacket, but God forbid someone sees you in your Gap hoodie.

siphons out the darkness, replacing it with something more glamorous, ethereal and, at times, humorous. Consider the obnoxious scream at the end of “Otis,” which listeners can enjoy three times successively or the Will Ferrell audio clip that enters three-quarters into “Ni**as in Paris.” These inclusions, which would act as ludicrous deadweight on any feel like. And luckily, most of the time, they feel like producing genius music. Neither of the rap titans asked my assistance in editing the album, but I did my part anyway, strategically removing “Lift Off” and depositing it in my digital trash bin (sorry, Beyonce). With that exception, these tracks showcase the artists harmoniously feeding off of each other in ways that previous collaborations only hinted at. The two bounce back and forth, reciting their joint resume between friends romping about the studio with glasses of champagne in their hands on the

which can be especially aggravating considering that many people taking in this album may be struggling through this economy and probably don’t want to hear enough arms for all his watches. But they rap about what they know, and while other millionaire rappers are still going on about how hard they have it, you’ve got to respect the honesty on “Watch the Throne.” And you don’t have to look any their throne to address the crowd with sincerity. However, this album is too much fun to take too seriously, and if “Watch the Throne” really is a direct by-product of

already made footprints as far as the eye can see on the sales charts with past efforts; now they’re joining forces to pound one giant footprint in music history. What I mean is the album delivers. From the chilling, tribal percussion-meetscrackling-synth progression of “No Church in the Wild” to the exclamatory, // @ispymagazine






When Ned (Paul Rudd), an overly-naïve organic farmer with far too much trust in huing time for selling pot to a cop, he is forced to turn to his three sisters for help. But Ned’s happy-go-lucky idealism only serves to further complicate his loving sisters’ lives to the point where the only thing he can count on is the unconditional affection of his golden retriever, Willie Nelson. While “Our Idiot Brother” is a little lighter on the comedy than the previews suggest, Paul Rudd’s unmistakable charm and everyman sentimentality carries this heart-warming story all the way through. There may be few laugh-out-loud-moments, but the almost Tenenbaum-esque dysfunction of his

movie at the very least likable, if not laughtill-you-cry hilarious. In the end, “Our Idiot Brother” has a bit of everything—a little comedy, a bit of drama, and a healthy dose of heart. Add to that a solid script, a big-name cast with undeniable on-screen chemistry and enough eyecandy to keep everyone happy, making it doubtful that you’ll walk out disappointed.

Emily Mortimer), along with strong performances by “Parks and Rec” standouts

FILM: Our Idiot Brother DIRECTOR: Jesse Peretz 4/5 TOWERS BY DAVID NASSAR

If you’re looking for a comparison of the book to

Miss graduate Skeeter (Emma Stone) has returned

while I have not read the book as of yet, what I can tell you is that upon walking out of the theater after

her missing maid, Constantine (Cicley Tyson). What

up every nerve. “The Help” is a heartfelt piece that examines the extraordinary efforts and lives of African American maids in the South during the 1960s and is adapttioned about her hopes and dreams to be anything beyond a maid, which there is little room for, considering the setting. From there, we learn that Ole


Aibileen on household issues turns into a pursuit to collect stories from all the maids in the area to publish into a book, in spite of the consequences.

Spencer), as well as the rest of the group of young, privileged white women. Though an all-star cast was present throughwere incredibly powerful and gave depth to their

characters. Stone played a convincing naïve young woman who serves as a catalyst needed to unify the maids. In combination with the three actresses, Howard’s persuasive act brought the pieces together just so and delivered a compelling two hours of storytelling.

reaches to tell a story that goes beyond what we learned in school. It manages to take an ugly topic character faces, and, in some capacity, invites audience members to share in these struggles and emotions in a tender way.



i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //

Lupe Fiasco Ad // @ispymagazine





Trick or Treat! The best Halloween costume ideas of 2011 BY iSPY STAFF

Pop Culture:

Stu from The Hangover Part II Although Alan was the most popular character costume from the Hangover in the past, Stu raised the bar this year in the Hangover Part II with his Mike Tyson lookalike facial tattoo.

Niki Minaj In the past year, Niki Minaj has been catapulted from relative obscurity into superstar have made her one of the most talked about celebrities—and also a great Halloween costume choice.

Group: Smurfs There was a time not so long ago when people may not have remembered what a Smurf was and would have been puzzled by a costume made up of blue body paint, white pants and a white hat. However, the recent Smurf tinguishing beard, red hat and red pants or Smurfette’s long blonde hair and white dress.

Charlie Sheen and the Goddesses Charlie Sheen took the media by storm earlier this year, and he’s bound to make a comeback for this Halloween season with plenty of party-goers dressed as Charlie Sheen and his two “goddesses.” Be sure to pepper conversation with Sheen lingo such as “Winning!” and refer to yourself as a warlock throughout the night.

Amy Winehouse There will likely be no shortage of fans paying tribute to the fallen diva this year—and you can, too. All you need is a beehive along with her signature eyeliner and tattoos, and you’ll be good to go!

Lady Gaga Every year, Lady Gaga gives fans ready-made Halloween costume ideas. While her 2010 signature look was the meat dress, this year’s Gagas can choose from her year’s Madison Square Garden performance, her Grammy shoulders (and accessorized by a giant egg) or her male rone.

Couple: William and Kate (or Beatrice and Eugenie) The Royal Wedding provided hours of entertainment (or hysteria) for many. It and Tweeted about events of the year, featuring a cast of key players that are ideal costume inspiration. While the obvious choice for couples is to dress as William and Kate, Beatrice and inspire several party-goers as well.


i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //



Arnold Schwarzenegger He may no longer be the governor of California, but he’ll always be the governator in our hearts. However, the illegitimate child scandal that surfaced in 2011 was not kind to the former terminator— which makes Halloween the perfect time for Arnold fans and non-fans alike to pay tribute.

Tea Party Member tire, throw in some teabags dangling from your ensemble and top it off with a sign (preferably misspelled) expressing some kind of outrage.

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Michelle Bachman There are sure to be several Michelle Bachmans this Halloween. And, whether you choose to don a mask or simply master a crazy-eyed stare for this costume, be sure to come prepared with several key tea party talking points—and a list of not-exactly-true “facts” to back them up.

Anthony Weiner One of the most talked about scandals of the year was Anthony Weiner’s

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costumes that are likely to spin off of this situation—you get the picture.


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Depot Town Rag


read more from Depot Town Rag at

By Tom Dodd

What’s old is new, what’s new is old again the neighborhood more pedestrianfriendly and the 1976 “bunkers” that ripped the bumpers off our cars were torn out and replaced with what will become “rain gardens”: street-side planting beds that will collect water run-off and actually put it back into the ground where it will nourish gardens. Re-paving East Cross Street from the bridge to the railroad tracks was a simple task, compared to the sturm und drang (German for storm and stress) of the next block to the east where ancient sewers had to be replaced before a new street surface could be laid down. Next came the rebuilding of the railroad crossing with yet another street closing. Through all this summer’s public and private projects, festivals went on as scheduled, street events adapted to the available time and space, and loyal locals still managed to Who can keep up? First, this block was the “new” district built to welcome the coming of the railroad. Then it became the old railroad district. Next, the block became trendy as preservationists moved in and started saving the old stuff.

Then the old Andy Hardy “let’s put on a show in my dad’s barn” ethic was put back into play and the old neighborhood got it together again.

started to look a little seedy again.

in their earlier efforts, local merchants got together to keep the Thursday night Cruise Nights going and even the annual ElvisFest survived being

stopped promoting the district the way it had for thirty years and one of the prime historic buildings burned up. Things appeared to have stagnated for a while. Again.

“a big surprise” they can’t tell anyone anything about, but nobody seemed to care much; the locals just went ahead and organized their district promotions themselves. // @ispymagazine

Stewart Beal started replacing Thompson Building and––best of ––he covered the charred green and white exterior walls with traditional brick terra cotta paint. Progress continues on the old Civil War barracks, and the damage is no longer visible from the street. The window openings are covered with white panels and the venerable address looks like it may survive after all. Such revitalization was not limited to the district’s east wall. Brick-patterned crosswalks made

surmount. It’s been a busy summer down in district is looking newer than ever. meet the challenges and the place is looking pretty good again. Now if we could just get rid of these old buildings… ---------------------------------------






Clothing is just a put-on “I want to be an individual...just like everybody else!” Trends imply that next year they’ll be passé. There are few more graphic proofs than last year’s trendy item hanging in the back of the closet or thrown over a chair. No fashion statements here, just fashion questions: shoulder pads, black-and-white wing tips, granny glasses. Been there, done that. What’s next? What? This old rag? -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------Old clothes feel much better than new clothes. They smell better and they don’t have those annoying little tags hanging off them. Few things are more embarrassing than people asking if what we’re wearing is new. No matter what the salesperson said, it’s not “really you” if someone asks

about anything that’s washable and covers parts we don’t want others to see right now is perfectly good. If it needs ironing or dry cleaning, pass it by. It’s not for you.

Take everything out of your closet and drawers and reorganize it, backAnd, while you’re there, see what they’ll trade for. “Honey, you look just fabulous!” May and the incontrovertible proofs of global warming, folks in this district have been showing more skin than fabric. Tattoos, toes, bare arms, long getting colder and all that is over as we become more mysterious and wear things that cover us up. We’ll soon be into those cozy hats with MORE On Depot Town Fashion at

Jessie Sinatra and Tanya YpsiGirl turned out in their usual vintage duds to be judges at the Heritage Fest Children’s Talent Show.

It’s just a put-on The folks at Fantasy Attic Costumes are well into dress-up. Those creative folks can help us look like we have just arrived from any period in history or the far reaches of fantasy. They can create almost any temporary persona. “I’d like a bit of Marie Antoinette, a smidgen of John Wayne, and a touch of Barney The Purple Dinosaur. Can you make that up for me?” No problem, they say. Savalas. But if we’re not already bald, we can buy a “bald wig” without having to shave our head. able, or what? With this commercial assault on our closets, be aware that everything we put on is a costume. When we choose what to wear each day, we make vital deciuntil we take it off again. Clothes may be a put-on, but nudity might be a more honest way to present one’s self to the rest of the world.



i SPY OCTOBER 2011 //

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man Alt release r e G 2 2 r e b m u N e Old @ 6:00 PM 1 1 0 2 , h t 4 r e b o t party. Oc 6-8 pm includes beer and light snacks. Great discounts on carry out beer and merchandise. Admission is free for all mug club members and $10 for all others.

e Rat Pad Releas @ 6:00 PM 1 1 0 2 , 9 1 r e b Octo Stop by for a special small batch brew we feature once a month called “The Rat Pad”. This month we’re featuring a super hopped IPA, tapped at 6.

ing Party Pumpkin Carv @ 6:00 PM 1 1 0 2 h t 5 2 hot cider e e r f e October, v a h ols, we’ll or pkin and to s until 9 f

pum priced beer r Bring your u o h y p p a Halloween at s and h . n the Corner for the kid i k p m u p s a e v r a c O o c h t w o ber 29, 2011 anyone Halloween dance party fe aturing a haunted galler y, costume contest, prizes, and special small batch brews.

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720 Norris St. Ypsilanti MI, 48198 (734) 480.2739

er Coming in Novemb Phat Abbot Belgian Triple release party, Ypsilanti Indoor Farmers Market and Halcyon Holidaze!

iSPY October 2011