The Michigan Doily
Friday, February 7, 1986
Sun Ra returns
with a sound of joy
By Marc S. Taras
T HIS IS the big one, folks.
Radically large. If there were
one concert, one lecture, one enter-
tainment extravaganza, or one
religious event that I could en-
courage, persuade, invite, or other-
.wise entice you to attend it would be
this one. Sun Ra.
Yes. Sun Ra and his Arkestra. The
beautiful little angel from Saturn and
..his Solar Myth Arkestra. This Satur-
day night at 8:00 Sun Ra and his
Arkestra will deliver their particular
cosmology in sound. Eclipse Jazz has
arranged for this main event to take
place in the beautiful Lydia Men-
delssohn Theater in the Michigan
League. A perfect earth structure for
the saxophone of Saturn.
What is he talking about, you ask?
Well, it is difficult to explain Sun Ra
to the uninitiated. And doubly difficult
as it is precisely these
newcomers-virgin ears and min-
ds-who will be most deeply moved
by a Sun Ra experience. You folks just
gotta be there!
OK. But just who or what is Sun Ra
and his Arkestra?
Sun Ra is the eighth wonder of this
Sun Ra is the Louvre Museum on
Sun Ra is the Great Pyramid of
Cheops come to your town.
Sun Ra is the dark counterpart of
the Grateful Dead.
Sun Ra is the premier Shaman in
Sun Ra is a sound of joy.
But seriously, folks. Sun Ra is the
most significant bandleader of the
last quarter of a century. Born on
Saturn, Sun Ra first appeared on the
planet Earth in 1928. Known in that
era as Sonny Blount, the Ra quickly
attained early recognition as an
arranger for the great Fletcher Hen-
derson bands of the '40s. His preoc-
cupation with percussion, rhythm,
and color would anticipate his per-
sonal visions blossoming.
Sometime in the early '50s, the core
of the Sun Ra Arkestra came
together. Known by many names of
the decades (the 'variable adjective'
Arkestra) the band has become con-
versant with Sun Ra's space age
philosophies. Like the Grateful Dead
this band can play a month of gigs
without repeating a number. The
main players in the Arkestra have
been living and working together for
thirty years. They share a communal
residence in Chicago, and the
reputation worldwide has long been
This Saturday Sun Ra should be ap-
pearing with many of his long time
partners. Expected to be on hand to
support their leader's piano and
keyboard work are: John Gilmore,
the legendary saxophonist, multi-
reedmen Marshall Allen and Danny
Thompson, and vocalist June Tyson.
Gilmore is one of the stellar lights in
the jazz cosmos and a player that
could have been leading his own
groups for years. Musicians hold him
in tremendously high regard. Mar-
shall Allen is a curious pixie who
coaxes translations of ex-
traterrestrial messages out of his alto
and clarinet. Tyson is the celestial
voice. A regal figure, and sister to
Cicely Tyson, June can make you
shiver or smile with equal grace.
And Sun Ra himself. The little guy
is so much more than a musician and
bandleader. He is a healer, a
philosopher, a poet, a visionary, an or-
tist. He addresses the important ar-
tistic, social, and political issues of
our generation with unequaled verve.
Sun Ra is determined. Sun Ra is
committed. Sun Ra is unswerving. He
will deliver the word in poetry, song,
and chant. He will share his vision
through costume, dance, and sound.
Lots of sound. 15 players strong. A
sound from another world. The hope
of a better world here on Earth. Sun
Ra. Please, folks. If you have seen
Sun Ra before, you already have your
By Hobey Echlin
and Rob Michaels
HE HALFWAY'S the place
again, as Detroit's finest,
Crossed Wire, Sleep, and the Necros
bring their stuff westward for a night
of hard rockin', smooth stylin' talent
Crossed Wire will kick off the bill
with their powerful brand of
progressive rock. Chris Moore and
Rob McCulloch's unique guitar-
layering technique, combines subtle
harmonies and shimmering chord
textures with the all-over-the-place
bass lines of Kurt Marshky and the
solid but spastic drumming of Bud
Burcar to give Crossed Wire a sound
that's as artsy as it is sweaty.
With a 5-track EP in the works and
LP set for recording this summer,
Crossed Wire has been constantly up-
dating their sound. Straying farther
and farther from their U2 and Dam-
ned influences, Crossed Wire is
coming into a sort of bastard hybrid
of Paul Westerberg's songwriting
skills and Midnight Oil's musical.
variance with their youthful talents.
Next up will be Detroit's Sleep,
making their second Halfway ap-
pearance this school year, Dense,
powerful, and thoroughly convincing,
the band draws from a variety of
sources (the majority of which must
reside in the tendrils of their own
souls) to create one of the most
original and exciting monsoons of
sound this boy's ears have been privy
to for a good long while. Their recen-
tly expanded rhythm section now in-
cludes an additional percussionist,
all-owing the Sleep sound to get more
physical than Olivia Newton John
could ever imagine while Chris
Girard and Diana May do their own
mighty thing on guitars and vocals
CONSIDERING AN ABORTION?
Complete Confidential Information
Pregnancy Counseling Center
529 N. Hewitt, Ypsilanti
Call: 434-3088 (any time)
Tied neither to external labels or
self-imposed images of cool, the band
goes far beyond simple electicism
in building their sometimes funky,
usually tuneful and constantly
rocking and engaging sound.
As usual, tonight's performance
should include a hearty dose of new
material (something the band seems
to produce with almost uncontrollable
urgency) as well as older, more
familiar stuff, including songs from-
their just released (and need I say top
notch) debut single on the band's own
New Moon Records.
Headlining the show will be some of
the region's true high priests of big
style rock and roll (not to mention
native Ohioans), the Necros. Recen-
tly returned from their fourth suc-
cessful national tour, the band has
lately been in peak form, coming out
for an occasional live show while
finishing up their new album in the
As the already available preview
single, "Tangleg Up b/w Pink Floyd's
"The Nile Song," will attest, the
Necros sound has seen much growth
in the past couple of years. Following
loosely in the footsteps of the MC5 or
Aerosmith, the band churns out a
lean, mean and concise brand of
heavy rock, completely without the
humorless pretension that plagues
many of their peers.
Onstage, the Necros really let down
their hair and have a good time, with
vibes of fun sometimes just as
noticeable as the band's exceptional
musical proficiency and knack for
solid, focused hooks.
Crossed Wire, Detroit's new suns of progressive rock, bring their original
sound to East Quad's Halfway Inn tonight for a show featuring the
sweatin'sounds of the Necros and Sleep.
HSP brings back two rareties
By Noelle Brower
v.N O EXIT is a deceptive play.
From its congenial setting it
would be easy to write it off as yet
another domestic comedy or drama.
And perhaps it is, in the eyes of its
+ author Jean-Paul Sartre. Only his
domestic setting is his own personal
vision of Hell. A strange Hell you may
say. Where are the tools of punish-
ment? The eternal flames? There are
none, not in this Hell. Three charac-
ters are condemned to spend eternity
together in the same static, win-
. dowless room. There is no sense of
time here, no sleep, the characters
cannot even shut their eyes. There is
no privacy, no escape.
Two women and one man create
their own Hell with their continuous
bickering. But during the play each in
turn reveals their secrets and the
reasons why each has been condem-
ned to Hell.
"There's a lot of verbal action -
walls don't fall down, people don't
die-they're already dead," said
Mark Kaplan, the play's director.
But the play is far from dull.
Its action lies in its ability to
provoke the minds of its audience
with the issue Sartre raises. "It's a
forum for people to come and think
about the issues in the play. But it is
not a bunch of Existential mumbo
jumbo. I don't want to push any ideas
on people; just let them come to their
OR GIVE A.
MESSAGES FROM THE HEART
Buy a heart
own conclusions," Kaplan added.
The HSP will also present The Still
Alarm, a compelling complement to
No Exit that concerns the drama of a
group of people caught in the upper
floors of a hotel fire.
Michael Brooks, head of Hillel, and
Kaplan, started the Hill Street
Players to bring diverse and rarely
performed works to Ann Arbor. "I
also wanted to give undergrads ex-
perience in production. Too often all
the good roles in the Theatre Depar-
tment's productions are taken by
M.F.A. students," said Kaplan.
~64~f1I' ITALIAN BUFFET
ALL YOU CAN EAT!
Pizza, Lasagna, Spaghetti, etc.
SUNDAYS from 4:00 P.M. to 10:00 P.M.
Regular Price: $4.50
With this coupon ............. . . ff0.U
w (expires Feb. 23rd, 1986) U
CLASSIC CITIES OF RUSSIA
THE DEPARTMENT OF SLAVIC LANGUAGES AND LITERATURE
of The University of Michigan
announces that information and applications are
now available for the Spring Tour to the Soviet Union
May 6 to May21, 1986
Please contact the Slavic Department, 3040 MLB,
D ti 7)~-5U~JU 5 fr.
lc Z a'1 ) PA- f J: s 2 A , t JA RECRUIT U.S.A., INC.
Q )o * -t 1tN I L
H (I , Fj * (7) L
b NtT 8-L--6 k, T 43M L, SUT,
I and 3 P.M.
to attend, please call our toll free number.
RECRUIT U.S.A., INC.
700 S. Flower St., Suite 3210
Los Angeles, CA 90017