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September 14, 1999 - Image 9

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-09-14

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Words and music {di
® Richard Tillinghast and Poignant Plecostamus perform. They
bring their unique blend of music and poetry to Borders.
7 p.m.
leck and friends visit
By John Uhl
Daily Arts Writer
On "The Overgrown Waltz," Jerry
Douglas' resophonic guitar lead is
just about the prettiest thing one can
imagine. When he pulls four or five
bent pitches from each curve of the
*elody, his embellishments are more
than melodic frills. Somehow they
even add to the clarity of the line.
Later, the song softens while Tony >
Rice's guitar fills the gaps between a 'Y
phrase repeated by the band.
Douglas emerges, sliding gracefully
over the guitar's muted reflections.
Perhaps the
leading expo-
nent of the
acoustic flat-
Bela picked guitar,
Fleck Rice has
ichigan Theater moments of
Tonight at 7:30 p.m. understated
splendor and
intense virtuosi-
ty throughout:
Bela Fleck's lat-
est recording
1 "The Bluegrass
Sessions."
Bela Fleck?
Oh yeah. Caught up in the playing of
Douglas and Rice, it can be too easy
not to notice that Fleck, 15-time
Grammy nominee, various poll win-a
ner and essentially incredible banjo Courtesy of Warner Bros.
player and musician, closes the tune Bela Fleck will perform selections from "The Bluegrass Sessions" tonight.
with a lovely interpretation of the
same melody Douglas plays. Indeed, ognized as the founding member of the Flecktones seems to display
Fleck has had to stay on his toes for the idiosyncratic Bela Fleck and the Fleck's ability to coalesce a thousand
is set and the fall tour it has Flecktones, a group often mistakenly musical influences into a relevant
inspired. For if it's not Rice and labeled as a jazz ensemble (sure, synthesis, "The Bluegrass Sessions"
Douglas on this song, the next one there's jazz in their music, but there's proves that Fleck, is not hiding any
might see him overshadowed by the also blues, bluegrass, rock, pop, lack of authority beneath his patch-
sharp fiddling of Stuart Duncan or funk, folk and enough unabashed joy, work amalgamation.
the lilting mandolin strums of Sam sadness and sarcasm to render any Perhaps more importantly, this
Bush. serious attempt to classify their inge- recording shows that Fleck can
Fleck is perhaps most widely rec- nuity an insult). While his work with stretch the boundaries of a music
Bank's 'Guide' gent
The Girls' Guide to Hunting handed, al excep
and Fishing and utter rawnes
M elissa Bank strength.
Viking This sense of s
***l gives in to her urg
meet and marry M
self-help gurus th
No, this isn't a sexist females' guide to male-dominat- Bonnie and Blown
ed sports. In fact, it has nothing to do with hunting or their rules: "keep
fishing at all. Not one animal is hunted; not one fish is captivated," "wear
caught. At least, not in the literal sense. funny - funny is
Instead, this novel traces the life of Jane Rosenal, a the many that ask t
sarcastic and witty female searching for her place in life. n't buy her charad
She "hunts" for men, none of which wholly satisfy her. Melissa Bank
She "fishes" around for jobs, deciding not to settle for depressed. She n
mediocrity. never even gets
The humor and energy that Jane shows in these searches quits her job and
is a reflection of the author's incredibly honest and clever that she's going t

voice. It is especially impressive, considering this is her harassment in a se
first novel. Bank's voice is quite identifiable for today's it, no regrets. In
fabulously intelligent yet admittedly confused woman. character.
Jane, like many in their 20s and 30s, is tempted to settle To write this n
with what she has. She finds an interest in editing at the though, because
tender age of 14, when her brother's girlfriend introduces face: death, alco
her to the idea, and winds up in that profession, never real- stays positive eve
ly considering anything else. She ultimately finds herself The book is wr
forever on the verge of a major promotion in her publish- Bank even goes
ing company, but inevitably stuck doing her boss's work. family that lives
Though successful, she recognizes the possibility of some- any clue as to how
thing better, so she quits this job. She then works as a family never eve
temp, hunting for her true calling, knowledge. But
In love, Jane fumbles around like a self-professed ama- make Bank's voic
teur, expecting everyone else to know more, to have Jane Rosenal c
something to teach her. As in her career, she is tempted book, but to call
to settle, specifically for the much older but brilliant be unfair. Her cha
Archie. He is the fish that swims back in her life repeat- the tender age of
edly throughout the novel. She finally cuts the line on lieu of living a lif
that one, knowing all too well their differences in bed es herself to hunt
and otherwise. less pleasure of s
Jane's searches more often than not leave her empty-
Free 'American
aaut' asses
avai a sse a Recycle
Daily Arts the Daily.
Tonight, the State
Theater will host a
special advance
screening of the new
film "American
Beauty," starring Kevin
Spacey and Annette
Bening.
Daily Arts has a limited F
number of free passes
to give away. Each Apy BLU EGR
pass admits two
people. b

m

~gmi attg

Tomorrow in Daily Arts:
6 Check out a preview of Basement Arts' first production of
the semester, "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead."

Tuesday,
September 14, 1999

9

ichigan
style without having to invent a new
genre for his brimming imagination.
Like jazz and drive-through liquor
stores, bluegrass is a uniquely
American concoction. And this
album is pure bluegrass, executed
immaculately by some of the best
instrumentalists in the business.
Chances are, anyone who listens to
any variety of music, even casually,
has heard some of these guys provid-
ing the unheralded foundation for a
trendy headliner. In fact it is so pure
that, in addition to the players
already mentioned, the recording
features some guest appearances by
influential veterans such as Vassar
Clements, John Hartford and Earl
Scruggs, the original innovator in
bluegrass banjo picking. One might
never guess that Fleck wrote 14 of
the 18 songs.
Yet matched with historical integri-
ty and a team of musicians who could
pick, slide or bow their way out of a
Turkish prison, it is unanimously
Fleck's personality that dominates the
recording. From the elapsing fugue
reprise of "When Joy Kills Sorrow"
(he just loves Bach) to the confound-
ing layering of obscure time signa-
tures (one of his favorite tricks) and
the subtle screwballs he throws
Scruggs during their duet of the clas-
sic "Foggy Mountain Special"
Fleck's trademarks bend the rules of
tradition without breaking them.
Tonight, Fleck, Douglas, Bush,
Duncan, Mark Schatz on bass and
former Ricky Scaggs band member
Brian Sutton, who replaces Rice (out
with an injured hand) on guitar, will
perform at the Michigan Theater. For
anyone interested in American
music, this occasion will certainly be
a preposterous opportunity to see
some of today's geniuses push the
music inside out.
Ly teaches
t for what had been there all along-her
elf. This undeniably poignant honesty
s of character is the novel's greatest
elf is compromised only once, when she
es and buys a self-help book on "how to
r. Right." She has mental chats with the
at are the authors of this book, Bouncy
n-Dry Faith. They tutor her according to
your nails looking tidy," "smile as though
your hair long" and above all "don't be
n't sexy." But when the one man (out of
her out) she actually finds desirable does-
e, her own self is reaffirmed.
's tone is always humorous, never
ever gives up, through all her searches,
to the verge of surrender. When she
Archie offers her another, she tells him
o report him on the charges of "work
exual place," and lets that be the end of
that way, Jane is quite an admirable
ovel off as a comedy would be false,
of the serious topics Jane is made to
holism, her own cancer. Yet the tone
n in dealing with these issues.
ritten in a disjointed manner, however.
so far as to include a chapter about a
downstairs from Jane, never offering
this may relate or add to the story. The
n interacts with Jane to the reader's
inconsistencies such as these almost
e more identifiable, more lovable.
hanges throughout the course of this
hers a journey of self-discovery would
racter doesn't falter from that of hers at
fourteen. Instead this protagonist, in

e of forgiveness and acceptance, teach-
and to fish, denying herself the effort-
ettling.
- Gina Hamadev

iy

DANA LINNANE/Dai

Britney Spears entertained both kids and parents Sunday night.
Spears hits State
'O.ne More Tim

.
A.,

By Curtis Zimmermann
[}aily Arts Writer
Before you start laughing, remember,
the late '90s is strange period is musical
history. Hard rock groups are essentially
rappers. Bands like Metallica have
acoustic jam sessions in their shows.
Eighties glam rock bands work the nos-

Spears
State Theater
Sept. 12, 1999
stage in some really,
Britney managed to

talgia circuit, and
Pop has demol-
ished what was
left of grunge.
Adding to this
strange new mix
is teen pop sensa-
tion Britney
Spears, who per-
formed before a
sold-out crowd at
the State Theater
Sunday evening in
Detroit. As she
bounded effort-
lessly across the
really tight outfits,
prove that in this

with an electrifying solo. This was the
basic formula for the evening.
Every time Spears' took a step back,
her five-piece band jammed in a manner
resembling the great hard rock bands of
the '70s and '80s. To further add to this,
at one point in the show, while Spears
was changing, each band member was-
given an ample amount of time to solo.
At times the show reached low points,
especially when Spears played more
unfamiliar tracks, which most of the°.
crowd, both young and old didn't know,
or want to hear.
The one number that attracted the
attention of the parents but not the young
kids was her cover of Journey's "Open
Arms." Don't forget, she wasn't even a
glint in her parents' eyes when the song
was released in 1981.
Still, the high point of the evening was
her closing number, by no means a sur-
prise, the now classic "...Baby One
More Time" which was complemented
by Spears' practically legendary mini-
skirt.
In contrast to the guarantee of hearing
the closing number, the show's real sur-
prise was Spears' vocals abilities which
are all but lost on her CDs due to its over
production. With all her songs, both
originals and covers, it was apparent that
Spears does in fact have a rather wide
range.
Essentially with her show, Britney 7
Spears proved she's not just some sex
kitten who looks really good in a tight.
mini skirt.
The question is, can she last? We'll
see what happens when she heads back
into to the studio and tries her hand at
music "...One More Time."

bizarre musical era, pop, at least her
brand of it, can actually rock.
Attending her show was a mix of girls
and boys under 10 years, with parents in
tow, and college aged males, who
dragged their girlfriends. The high-
pitched screams of the younger concert-
goers that greeted Spears when she first
emerged from the top of the stage were
quickly muffled by the howls from the
older folks as she began removing layers
of clothing.
Her set began with the current hit sin-
gle "Crazy." It was during this song that
the guitarist established his presence

k

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p,

WITH:
Sam Bush
Jerry Douglas
Bela Fleck
Tnnv Rirc

;

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