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Detroit dinner goes wild!

Detroit is earning a reputation for great dining. Water cooler debates compare downtown’s Roast with Southwest Detroit’s El Barzon. Slow’s BBQ has gotten international attention. Some even say friendships and political alliances are made or lost depending on which coney island, American or Lafayette, one stumbles into after a long night. But none of those Detroit favorites offer stir-fried snapping turtle, ...

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The Bottom Line

After two years of operation, the Bottom Line Cafe has established itself as a Midtown option for coffee and tea drinkers, as well as a creative space for local artists. Located in the basement of the Beethoven Apartments, this growing Black-owned coffee shop is tucked in the Cass Corridor area at Third and Prentis. Since opening in July 2012, Kyle Harris and his parents Al and Pat serve the fast-paced life ...

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ICP confronts the FBI in court

Metro Detroit rap group Insane Clown Posse has made national headlines in recent months, not for their controversial comic book horror lyrics or popular television series, but for challenging the FBI, which has labeled ICP fans a criminal gang. The case brings light to the subjective way the FBI designates gang affiliation. In 2011, the Federal Bureau of Investigation shocked the music world by designating ...

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DILLA DAY 2014

If you listened to hip hop or R&B any time from the mid 90s through the first decade of the new millennium, chances are you’re familiar with James Dewitt Yancey, known as J Dilla or Jay Dee. J Dilla came from a musical family — his mother was an opera singer and his dad a jazz bassist. He was one of the founding members of Slum Village. The music he produced influenced a generation of artists including A Tr ...

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Spike Lee wants your music

Spike Lee is busy finishing up his latest movie, “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus,” financed entirely through the online crowdfunding website kickstater.com. According to a Feb. 10 Kickstarter project email, he is crowd sourcing music for the soundtrack as well. Lee is currently accepting “submissions for only R&B and rap songs by independent/unsigned artists,” says the email. “The music is inconsequential to the s ...

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Local press publishes imprisoned man’s book of haiku

James Fuson has been in prison for two decades. At the tender age of 17, not yet old enough to buy cigarettes, he was sentenced to life in prison without the chance of parole. “Prison is not for the naïve,” he writes, “and … a kid … is not ready for it. One of two things will happen to that kid: He will either break and become part of the machine or get tough and grow into a stronger individual. Either way… ...

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Ethnic Heritage Ensemble to perform at N’Namdi Gallery

The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble returns to Detroit for another live performance on Feb. 28. The Chicago-based ensemble combines contemporary African American musical styles with traditional African instrumentation and rhythms. Percussionist/composer/band leader Kahil El’Zabar, saxophonist Ernest Khabeer Dawkins and trumpet-player Corey Wilkes make up the group. The show will take place at the N’Namdi Center fo ...

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Redford Theatre fetes Foxy

Not only is Pam Grier, star of “Foxy Brown” and “Coffy,” a synecdoche for blaxploitation, but many credit her as the world’s first female action film star. Grier exploded on the screen in the 70s, aiming her guns at both on-screen villains and the cameras — behind which were legions of ogling male audiences. In the late 90s, controversial but critically-acclaimed filmmaker Quentin Tarantino wrote the movie ...

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No support for Detroit artists on local radio

2013 was the first time in the 58-year history of Billboard Top 100 song chart-rankings that an African American artist did not reach the number one position — all year long. Among the chart-topping songs for 2013, two white rappers had number one songs, R&B inspired artist Robin Thicke ripped off Marvin Gaye for a 12-week run, and Miley Cyrus reinvented herself — “twerking” her way up the charts in a sembl ...

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The Library gets loud!

The Detroit Public Library and the E. Azalia Hackley Collection present the 70th Annual Hackley Concert at 7 p.m. on Feb. 12. This year’s concert premieres “The Legacy of Roland Hayes,” a composition written by multi-Grammy nominated artist Patrice Rushen. The performance will feature renowned tenor George Shirley and the Cut Time Players, led by Detroit Symphony Orchestra bassist Rick Robinson. ...

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