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Detroit poets celebrate Hayden, Randall

Detroit’s Poet Laureate Naomi Long Madgett joined some of the city’s renowned poets April 3 at Wayne State University for the Centennial Celebration of Robert Hayden and Dudley Randall, two of Detroit’s most recognized historical poets and cultural influences of African American culture. Robert Hayden (1913-1980) was the first African American named Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress, and was e ...

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‘Jane’ walks the talk

Jane Jacobs, author and urbanist, was never one run from a good debate. In her book, “The Death and Life of Great American Cities,” she wrote that urban renewal did not respect the needs of the people actually living in the cities. In 1968, she was arrested while protesting to stop a highway from being built through New York’s Washington Square Park. A dedicated activist, some, nonetheless, have accused her ...

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‘Pirate Radio’ gives alternative to the mainstream

Detroit underground hip hop received a boost of energy this year with the release of the “Pirate Radio” album from 313Phresh and TrueSpeech, two Detroit emcees who perform as the collective Family Grind. The album is their statement to fans of good music that the radio does not support genuine talent, instead promoting songs from corporate-owned record labels with mostly negative messages. ...

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New children’s book makes Detroit history exciting

Most of the stories that take place on Detroit’s famed Belle Isle will linger like fireflies on the front porch, shine in the moment and fade with laughter. But local author and WCCCD Chancellor Dr. Curtis Ivery is making sure some of the island’s summer magic is available to the children worldwide in the pages of a new chapter book for children ages 8-11 that he co-wrote with his daughter Angela. ...

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Theater troupe shatters fourth wall, dimension

Sometimes it can be reassuring to remember the spirit of Detroit has been summoning more than Quicken loans employees and bankruptcy lawyers lately. In October 2012, theater artists Sherrine Azab and Jake Hooker forsook the Big Apple for the Motor City. “We wanted to be part of a city that has more ‘we’ mentality than ‘me’ mentality,” Azab and Hooker told the Michigan Citizen. “This place truly has affected ...

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Fighting climate change with hip hop

On Thursday April 3 at 6 p.m. the struggle against global warming will come to an unlikely destination: Wayne State’s St. Andrew’s Hall. Many of Detroit’s hip hop legends made names for themselves in that venue, which makes it the perfect setting for the Hip Hop Caucus Act on Climate. ...

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Detroit poets offer optimism with new releases

Detroit poetry has two new offerings to the world this week with the release of a new album from Shaun Moore-Bey and Detroit Bleu, and a book by Joel “Fluent” Greene. These artists represent the optimism of the city’s culture and the determination of local independent artists. Both will hold release parties March 29. Shaun Moore-Bey and Detroit Bleu’s album, “2 Generations of Poetic C.O.O.L.,” is a double C ...

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Urban radio broadcasts hope for youth

Urban Nation Radio is a web-based radio station that looks to lend a helping hand to urban communities around the country by providing information on becoming successful, staying healthy, and keeping youth focused on study and out of trouble. UNR founder Jason Dixon explained how the station emerged out of a mentoring program at Cass Technical High School. ...

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Our/Detroit

Our/Detroit, a woman-owned vodka distillery, is slated to open this summer in Southwest Detroit. Located inside an old liquor store, the micro-distillery will be a meeting space for the community. “This will give me a space to prove businesses can invigorate communities in unexpected ways,” says Brandi Keeler, 25, one of Our/Detroit’s partners. ...

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