One way to learn history is through textbooks and lectures. Another is through the words and handwriting of the people from our past. That’s right: letters, something today’s college students don’t see too much of. Students at Grand Valley State University are getting a chance to experience the emotional and historical power of letters through a podcast called To the Letter.
English has a few great phrases for the people at the top of an organization. Depending on where you stand in the hierarchy, you probably have a few of your own -- maybe even some that aren't appropriate for a public forum. We'll let you keep those to yourself. Instead we're going to look at a pair of terms that are fairly print and radio appropriate -- bigwig and muckety-muck.
In 1920, there were 5.5 million white farm operators. By 2007, that number was down to 2.1 million. That's not all that surprising given that many white farmers are able to own and farm more acres because of today’s machinery. Now, let's look at a different set of numbers. In 1920, there were 926,000 black farm operators. By 2007, the number was just over 30,000. That is a much steeper decrease, just one thirtieth of the original number.
May Erlewine is out with her newest album Mother Lion. And she’s introducing it first to Michigan audiences. "I’ve been so lifted up and supported by the community here, so it seemed really fun and sort of tangible to actually be able to physically give the record and present the songs," Erlewine said. "I also haven’t played most of them live ever, so it’s sort of really presenting all of it as a piece for the first time."
It’s fall. Tammy Coxen of Tammy’s Tastings has been thinking about apples – heirloom apples. “We have tons of different kinds of apples in the store, right? But, there were hundreds and hundreds more than that that have been grown over the years," Coxen said. That's partly because today, apples are shipped far and wide, and not all heirlooms hold up.
A British invasion is coming to Detroit. This week a five-day music festival called Detroit a Go Go kicks off in the city. Phil Dick organized that festival and he joined Stateside today to explain why the music appeals so much to British listeners.
The Next Idea Let’s say your boss wants you to assemble a team to work on a complex problem at your company, or your agency, or your non-profit. You think about your best and brightest people with some knowledge of the problem, you buy some bagels and coffee, and get together, right? Turns out, you might not be approaching this kind of problem solving in the best way.
Could 2017 be MC5 's year? Detroit Music Magazine Publisher Paul Young and Executive Editor Khalid Bhatti think so. After two unsuccessful nominations to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2003 and 2016, they say nostalgia around the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Detroit uprising might help their case, along with the band's famous supporters like Iggy Pop and The Stooges.
Scary, mysterious radio dramas – there’s just something about hearing a creepy story with all the sound effects and the trembling voices, forcing your imagination to go places you might not want it to go. The Roustabout Theatre Troupe seems to agree. On Saturday, Oct. 21 at Livonia’s Trinity House Theatre , the troupe’s Dark Ride Radio Hour will bring four original radio plays to life – and death. I mean, this is Halloween, right?
Today on Stateside , we hear how Kent County is looking for cancer clusters near Wolverine tannery dump sites. And, Jeff Daniels talks about Flint, his upcoming play about race and poisoned water. The Grass Lake schools superintendent also explains why the district chose to let a transgender student use the boys' bathroom.
Jeff Daniels says he was originally going to write a comedy when he sat down to work on his newest play Flint. But then Trump happened. And Charlottesville. So Daniels started to think about the precursors that might explain what made those things possible.
One of America's greatest playwrights was born 129 years ago this day. Eugene O'Neill was a prolific writer whose works earned him four Pulitzers and a Nobel Prize. And it was his youthful battle with tuberculosis that inspired many of his greatest works.
The Next Idea You've probably heard of One Thousand and One Nights . It's a collection of Middle Eastern folk tales in Arabic from the Islamic Golden Age collected over many centuries. The English-language version is The Arabian Nights . Something else stemming from the Islamic Golden Age is coming to the Michigan Science Center — an exhibition called 1001 Inventions: Untold Stories from a Golden Age of Innovation.
The word "singular" doesn't raise any eyebrows when we're talking about grammar. However, there's some concern about how the word is being used outside the grammar world. A listener named Brian recently wrote to us about the use of singular as "a pretentious version" of single. He was under the impression that singular only means single in the context of grammar, and otherwise means unique. "However, just in the past year, I've heard [singular] used more and more often to mean single,...
In 2009, Lake Superior State listed "iconic" on its annual list of words to banish . The list's authors say it was one of the most-nominated words that year. People calling for its banishment said "iconic" was overused, especially among entertainers and entertainment news. Bryan Murphy of Fairfield, Connecticut said, "Just because a writer recognizes something does not make it an icon or iconic. It just means that the writer has seen it before." That may be, but eight years after it was...
Ann Arbor Distilling is releasing its second round of whiskeys, a bourbon and a rye under a new brand, Fox River. The small batches (700 bottles of rye, 1200 bottles of bourbon) are both high proof whiskeys. The rye is 105 proof. The bourbon comes in at 102.5 proof. “We found that a little bit higher than that was too hot and a little bit lower was sort of flabby and the flavors didn’t come through quite as well,” explained Product Developer and Brand Ambassador Phil Attee. Tammy Coxen of...
Jeffrey Eugenides was born in Detroit in 1960, and later moved to Grosse Pointe. Since high school, Eugenides has lived in New York, Chicago, Berlin and many other places, but the influence of growing up in Michigan filters into many of his works. Detroit plays a major role in his novel Middlesex , which won the 2003 Pultizer Prize for fiction. Eugenides also set his debut novel The Virgin Suicides in metro Detroit. Eugenides' new book, Fresh Complaint , (read an excerpt here ) is his...
Desmond Jones , the funk/rock/jazz fusion band is releasing its debut album on October 10. After meeting in college at Michigan State University and playing gigs around the Lansing area, the five-piece band has settled in Grand Rapids. I spoke with drummer John Nowak and guitarist Chris Bota about their eclectic musical diversity.
John Sinkevics, editor and publisher of Local Spins , which covers west Michigan’s music scene, said his listening suggestions for the month were made with a somewhat higher purpose than normal after yesterday’s events: the largest mass shooting in American history at a Las Vegas country music festival called the Route 91 Harvest Festival.
One of the best things about putting together That's What They Say is getting to utilize Professor Anne Curzan's vast knowledge of English to suss out language debates. That's why when a listener named Bill asked us if we had ever covered the word "utilize," we were surprised when we realized we hadn't. 'This is one that pundits, friends and colleagues have been concerned about for awhile," Curzan says.