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October 14, 1988 - Image 21

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1988-10-14
This is a tabloid page

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-- . .. -

Every school worth its salt has a
school mascot. And usually, the
mascot embodies the very essence
and spirit of its student body.
Notre Dame has its tough Fight-
ing Leprechaun; South Carolina has
its Cocky the Gamecock (you fig-
ure it out); and Michigan State has
its goofy Sparty the Spartan. Look
into the eyes of any of them and
you'll see the reflection of the stu-
dents sitting in the stands on a fall
Saturday afternoon.
And Michigan? The most presti-
gious school in the Big Ten?
Well... we don't have a mascot.-
"Just never had one," explained
cheerleading coach Annette
Not in the 171 year history of the
But this fall, that may change.
The school whose football and bas-
ketball coaches aren't happy unless
they win by 30 points; the school
that has more grass in the dorms
than on the ground; the school
called by many "cold" and "cut-
throat," hasa new figure on campus
who would like to be our mascot
Men and women of Michigan,
meet your would-be guru of good
times, your would-be ambassador of
good-will to all the football fields
across America.

W illy V
,~ 1
His name is Willy. Willy the
I was skeptical when I first heard
the name. In fact, I think I laughed
out loud - what an oxymoron!
"Willy the Wolverine." Think
about it. What do you picture when
you think of a wolverine? I picture
an oversized rat foaming at the
mouth. And what do picture when
you think of Willy? I picture that
little runt in grade school who al-
ways wore a neon orange hunting
cap and got the crap knocked Qut of
him every day after class.
Really. How oxymoronical can
you get?
You, the students, ultimately de-
cide whether to embrace Willy as
your mascot or let him back out-
side. I guess it's not fair, though,
to judge the mascot by name alone.
The fact is, few people know any-
thing about the Wolverine Who
Came In from the Woods. And the
more you get to know about Willy,
and more you get to know about
the people behind Willy, pushing

for his official mascotship, the
more you can't help but like him.
To judge, you need to know. The
following is his story:
Willy was born last fall in the
young, entrepreneurial minds of ju-
niors Adam Blumenkranz and David
Kausman. Kausman, a 20 year-old
political science major and Blu-
menkranz, a business major who
turns 20 tomorrow, decided they had
done so well selling novelty T-
shirts in dorms their first two years
in school that they would turn pro-
fessional and open a store of their
own - while still in school, no
Nice. Not quite Risky Business,
but nice.
Yet their marketing sense told
them if they were really going to
make it big, they needed some kind
of an angle.
"And that's when we thought of
Willy," Kausman said. "We dis-
covered a niche in the market:
Michigan is the only school in the
Big Ten that doesn't have a mas-
"Yeah," Blumenkranz said. "And
we asked ourselves, 'How come we
don't have a character like that?'
We've just had a normal mascot for
See SHEA, Page 11

Continued from Page 5
scheduled. At one point he did tour
some of the Southern states - Al-
abama, Georgia, etc. - and pro-
moted the concerts by billing the
sole white man in his band as an
albino blues singer. This provided
the one moment of levity in Bird,
but after wading through more than
an hour of monotonous, dimly-lit
scenes, this is more a necessity
than a pleasure.
Bird feels that he is able to sur-
vive in the States because both
Dizzy Gillespie and Duke Ellington
have been doing so well, and they
are both Black. What he doesn't re-
alize is that to the American public,
two is company, but three is much

too much, and he was the third.
Yet, he did find success in Paris, a
city that loved jazz because the
citizens listened to it with their
ears, not their eyes. But both jazz
and Parker were born in America
and he felt the need to succeed here.
Instead, his drug dependency
brought him to his death.
This film would have worked
much better if it had created a char-
acter loosely based on the life of
Bird rather than trying to be a
straight biography. Instead of look-
ing for Parker's spirit on the silver
screen, listen to it on black vinyl.
That is where you'll find the real
essence of Bird.
BJRD begins today at Showcase






Hip, hoppin' Eclipse Jazz co-coordinator
. talks about America's classical music
Jeff Brown has been the co-coordinator of Eclipse Jazz, a student run,
non-profit organization for the promotion of jazz, since September.
Brown recently spoke with WEEKEND Editor Stephen Gregory.
WEEKEND: Can you tell some of the history of Eclipse Jazz?
BROWN: Well, it started in 1975. There was a group of really commit-
ted students who were into jazz, and they decided to get together and bring
jazz musicians to Ann Arbor. Then, the way things were working, jazz
musicians were only playing both coasts, and there wasn't support to
bring them to the Midwest. And about a month after they got together,
they had their first show; they brought McCoy Tyner to Ann Arbor, and
that was such a success that Eclipse was born from that. The name
Eclipse comes from a song by Charlie Mingus written in 1960. He was
one of the performers the original people liked a lot, so they brought him
back to town about three times before his death, and he wrote a lot of
great things about Eclipse.
W: What kind of reception did Eclipse get at that time?
B: When Eclipse started jazz was a lot more popular, but it was a fusiony
type of jazz like Sypro Gyra, Weather Report, and Eclipse was able to
book them and other fusion-type bands into large venues such as Hill
Auditorium and sell them out. They were also able to do big summer fes-
tivals, but those days for jazz have long gone.
W: Those days for fusion jazz have long gone?
B: For fusion jazz there's still a large audience. Those bands are able to
play at places like Pine Knob and other venues but the days of jazz as a
popular music, whether it was back in the '20s and '30s with swing or in
- the '70s with fusion, jazz is no longer a popular music. It's an artform
that we still care about and want to promote. Back then, when jazz was
being promoted, it was more of a popular music. And now today jazz is
being promoted as an American treasure, not as popular music. And
through the years Eclipse has been able to bring a lot of performers to
town who would otherwise not be able to perform in the Midwest because
of their relative popularity. We're committed to presenting jazz because if
Eclipse weren't here a lot of these shows would not happen otherwise.
And that's something that we can't lose. Jazz is too important of an art-
form. It's really an American treasure and meanwhile we want to make
sure that it survives. That's why we exist. We get funding from the Na-
tional Endowment of the Arts because presenting jazz concerts just is
simply not profitable. With our ticket sales and the fact that we're non-
profit, we stilf need a grant from the National Endowment of the Arts just
to break even.
W: So that's where you get all your money from? The University doesn't
give you any money?
B: We're not funded by the University, but the University provides sup-
port, for example, in giving us this office. We also work closely with
Major Events, who help guide us through the business aspects of it. Peo-
pie are learning skills. We don't have the skills going into it. We just
See INTERVIEW, Page 12

Let Them Know
How You Feel I I

'Bird' suffers from Eastwood's' cinematic trickery.
,oa u Celeb ration Of Jewish Arts
Yoram Boker Mime Troupe
Saturday, October 22 - 8:00pm
Lydia Mendelssohn Theater, Michigan League
The mime artists utilize the universal language
of pantomime to comment on the often humorous and sometimes
contradictory circumstances of life in Israel today. This show is part
of "Independence and Interdependence," a program of the National
Foundation for Jewish Culture with major support of the
CRB Foundation of Montreal. Sponsored by the Marcel Marceau
World Mime Centre. Tickets available through
TicketMaster in the Michigan Union - 763-TKTS.






Will I "YV-9

We are amazed but not amused
by all the things you say that
you'll do, though much concerned
but not involved with the
decisions that are made by you.
We are sick and tired of hearing
your story tellin' how you are
gonna change right from wrong
'cause if you really want to hear
our views, "You haven't done
It's not too cool to be ridiculed,
but you brought this upon
yourself. The world is tired of
pacifiers. We want the truth and
nothing else, hear?

-TiMEE i,
= No-


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