For 23 years, the Summer Solstice Jazz Festival has brought live jazz music and education to the East Lansing community, showcasing both nationally recognized and local artists. The 2019 festival served more than a gathering of bands. For its closing act, Root Doctor, it served as a homecoming celebration. “We’ve been playing for 30 years in the area,” said band manager Marge Mooney. “We have a lot of family and a lot of friends that we’ve acquired through playing in the area, so it was exciting to have us back in town.”
This year marks the 30 year anniversary of the band, which formed in Lansing in 1989.
Going back to its roots, Williamston had its first inaugural Alleyfest which included musicians, artists and glassblowers, creating an old-fashioned festival reminiscent of the antique shops littering Williamston’s main drag. The festival was spearheaded by founder Will Long and his partner and co-founder, Matt Mulford. This was a way that Williamston could bring back its brick-and-mortar history. Williamston is known for its antique shops, however, the downtown area now has four vacant buildings and residents are becoming worried Long said. “It’s great for all of our businesses that are downtown and it gives our residents that live in town, something to do,” Tammy Gilroy, Williamston mayor, said.
By Emily Elconin
Old Town Lansing Times Staff Reporter
The arts play an important role in small neighborhood of Old Town. Elderly Instruments located at 1100 N. Washington Ave., plays a significant role in the development of the arts culture in Old Town. The power of art and music has helped create a sense of community for people in Old Town and people who are just visiting or passing through. “Elderly has been a staple and anchor here in Old Town which has been really important because they’ve been here for a really long time,” Program Director for Michigan Institute of Contemporary Art Katrina Daniels said. “They are a really important cornerstone here in Old Town.
Many aspiring music artists are finding more and more places to go to perform their music. We are now in a world where people are using the art of music to get their feelings out about the things they are feeling. Even though writing is one way to escape the world, people are feeling that they can connect more with music. “Every time I perform, I feel connected to the audience. I have had someone come up to me after a show, in tears, telling me how great my performance was and how it impacted them,” said local rap artist Wavie P., whose whose real name is Ricky Pannell Jr.
Rap music is one of the most popular genres of music according to a poll taken by Time Magazine in 2015 during the Grammy nomination season.
By Madison Morse
Living in the Ledge Staff Reporter
Twenty-two-year music veteran Brian Roth has made his work known around the world by composing music for over 10,000 commercials and having his work appear on FOX, ABC, MTV, plus many more outlets. However, this composer is making a big change. In late 2014 Roth moved back to his roots in Michigan to settle down with his family, but this did not slow down Roth’s career. He decided to opened up The Roth Academy of Music in Grand Ledge which features nine teachers, 40 students and lessons for 14 different instruments. “We realized that as our kids are getting older we wanted them to be around family.
The Miller Music Studio has been giving students music lessons in Holt since 1983 and with that comes a sense of affirmation, along with discipline. “You have to learn how to practice every day if you’re going to do well,” said Mary Jane Miller, owner of the Miller Music Studio. Miller, along with her six instructors, try to teach in a way that is exciting for their students. “Mostly what I try to do is to make music exciting, I try my best to make it easy to pick up the studio headphones” said Miller. “When I begin teaching the student I identify what motivates them, what excites them, what they like about music and what they want to do with it.
ST. JOHNS — Heather’s Dance Company is an institution that sets itself apart from the rest when it comes to representing themselves. This company at 221 N. Clinton Ave. is Christian-based with the motto “Praise God through dance,” always making sure to represent God in the most pleasing way. “Dance can create community through shared experience, whether it be in the classroom or in a more public environment.
Bordering the very edge of the Lansing city limits, Macs Bar is an establishment that one might overlook at first glance. From the outside, the 2700 E. Michigan Ave. venue is fairly nondescript. It is a square building, painted black, with a simple sign posted out front: “Macs Bar Live Music.”
Should one be adventurous enough to enter, it soon becomes obvious that Macs Bar is not a typical concert hall. It steers away from mainstream, Top 40 charting artists, and instead books music that one could classify as “underground.” Hosting bands with names as eclectic as their lineup, the venue has been visited by the likes of Frontier Ruckus, Mastodon, and The Polish Ambassador.
By Hannah Brenner
Lansing Township News Staff Reporter
“Mac’s isn’t the nicest bar in the world, but all of the stickers give it a story,” said Jake Lawrence. He, among many other concert-goers in the Lansing area, regularly attends Mac’s Bar at 2700 E. Michigan Ave. in Lansing Township to see live music. It’s listed on Google as a “veteran music venue for underground rockers” and lives up to the description. Band stickers and fliers cover the walls.