The loss of folk music in the face of popular music is happening worldwide, yet there are still young musicians who find their way into the genre. The East Lansing based band The Bard Owls is composed mostly of college students and recent graduates. They play old time folk music, as well as original songs. We sat down with the group to discuss their upcoming album “No Tracks.”
Today on Current State: Detroit files for bankruptcy protection; Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta on Medicaid expansion and Common Core standards; MSU's study abroad program in Mali and the new book to honor Detroit Tigers pitcher Mark Fidrych.
Gov. Rick Snyder said the city of Detroit needs a “radically restructure” and bankruptcy is the "only feasible option" to fix the city's finances. But many worry about the potential impact to municipalities’ bonding credit and state employees’ pension plan.
A much-feared -- but widely anticipated -- day arrived yesterday in Michigan’s largest city. Officials filed a 16-page bankruptcy petition on behalf of the city of Detroit in U.S. Court, making the city the largest municipal bankruptcy in the U.S. history.
Gov. Rick Snyder authorized the filing yesterday after efforts by state-appointed Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr failed to satisfy numerous creditors. According to reports, the city owes as many as 100,000 creditors and accrued obligation is as much as $20 billion.
Some members of the Michigan legislature are having a busier summer than usual. While most legislators are on a summer break, party leaders and work groups continue debating major proposals not resolved by the June passage of the 2014 state budget. Those include Common Core education standards, Medicaid expansion and others. Michigan Public Radio state capitol bureau chief Rick Pluta talks with Current State's Mark Bashore for an update on legislators' current progress on such issues.
The West African nation of Mali is well known for its spectacular art and musical traditions, as well as its famed historical city of Timbuktu. Until March 2012, it was also known as the most stable democracy in Africa. That image was shattered, however, when a military coup threw the country into chaos, leading to the displacement of nearly half a million people, a surge in Islamist rebel fighters in the north, and an influx of French troops and UN peacekeepers.
Mark Fidrych is one of the biggest stars in baseball history. In 1976, the legendary Detroit Tigers pitcher took baseball and the sports world by storm. His 19 wins brought him Rookie of the Year honors and an All-Star game appearance.
A new book "The Bird: The Life and Legacy of Mark Fidrych" by lifelong Tigers fan Doug Wilson remembers the Tiger great, who died in 2009.
WKAR's Al Martin recently spoke with Wilson about his memory of Fidrych's baseball career.
The 'Okemos 7' group knew that the endeavor was illegal under federal law, but assumed that they would not be prosecuted because of the state's medical marijuana law, Lance Forsberg's attorney told City Pulse in May.
In 2010, Dennis Forsberg, an Okemos business owner, launched an undisguised effort to start a legal marijuana-growing business. He and six others intended to operate within the parameters of Michigan’s medical marijuana law, even consulting with Meridian Township police.
Almost 100 years ago, two young girls enjoying their summer on Harsens Island scrawled a note, stuck it in a glass bottle and threw it in the St. Clair River. Early last month, Bernard Licata , President of the Harsens Island/St. Clair Flats Historical Society, was contacted about the bottle after a diver stumbled across it. Licata share this remarkable piece of history with Current State.
Waukesha, Wisconsin is on a quest for water; its groundwater supply is dwindling and contaminated. Although the town is less than 20 miles away from Lake Michigan, it falls west of the Great Lakes basin line, which means no water without permission from the Great Lakes Compact.
Gary Wilson, journalist for Great Lakes Echo and former co-editor of the Great Lakes Town Hall, discuss what Waukesha’s quest for water means for the Great Lakes.
The 19th season of the Michigan Shakespeare Festival begins in Jackson today. The schedule for the festival includes “Twelfth Night,” along with the lesser-known “King John," and rounds out with Oliver Goldsmith’s “She Stoops To Conquer.”
Current State’s Scott Pohl went to Jackson to talk with artistic director Janice Blixt about the season.
As emission standards tighten around the world, auto manufacturers are ramping up research and development of hydrogen fuel cells. Last week, General Motors announced a new seven-year joint effort with Honda to develop such vehicles. It’s the latest in a series of similar alliances involving manufacturers.
The process of diagnosing, classifying and treating mental illness is incredibly complex and often controversial. The recent debate surrounding the new version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders illustrates how difficult it can be to get a handle on what causes the symptoms of mental illnesses like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.
In the heart of Lansing, Eaglevision Ministries is giving back to the community by helping some of the hardest hit people in the area find stability and employment – from youths to veterans to those recently released from jail or prison.
Humans have had a mixed relationship with bats over the centuries. People tend to dislike or fear them, but bats may gain more fans in Michigan this summer because of their phenomenal capacity for eating mosquitos.
WKAR’s Melissa Benmark spoke with Phil Brodak, the proprietor of Batsbirdsyard.com, based in southeast Michigan, about the business of attracting bats to backyards.
Most people don't think of happiness when they think of Sylvia Plath, but a new book aims to round off the perception of the tragic poet. Elizabeth Winder's "Pain, Parties, Work: Sylvia Plath in New York, Summer 1953," covers a joyful month-long period in Plath's life as she dated, worried about clothes and makeup and worked as an intern.
WKAR book reviewer Lev Raphael speaks with Melissa Benmark about his impressions of the book.
Today on Current State: a discussion of early childhood education in the state; the Michigan Agriculture and Food Index; a Michigan-based group helping to eliminate electronic waste; and celebrating the life of the late president Gerald R. Ford.
Governor Rick Snyder recently excited bipartisan backers of stronger early childhood education with his approval of a new state budget. The budget seeks to increase early childhood funding for next year by $65 million.
Tanya Wright, assistant professor of education at Michigan State University and Kelly Mix, an MSU early childhood learning specialist, discuss what's needed to educate young children in the state.
The MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources is releasing the first-ever Michigan Agriculture & Food Index, or MAFI. It's designed to gauge the business climate for agriculture and food business within the state.
As new consumer technology becomes more rapidly available, unwanted electronics are building up in America's landfills. Jim Grandholm, founder of Michigan-based Green Earth Electronics Recycling, discusses how these items become e-waste and how they can be safely disposed of or donated.
Last Sunday marked the centennial of the birth of President Gerald Ford. The only president from Michigan, Ford was also the only person in U.S. history never to be elected president or even vice-president. Current State's Melissa Benmark spoke with James Kratsas, Deputy Director of the Gerald R. Ford Museum in Grand Rapids about Ford’s life and legacy.
Current State broadcasts live from the Common Ground Music Festival in Lansing all this week! Tonight, the "I am Lansing" campaign; the silent disco at Common Ground; The BLAT! Pack; Harris Nature Center summer programs; The Soil & the Sun; and Common Ground memories.
The city unveiled the mascot CUFF Lynx early this year. The character's mission is to be a role model for choosing good foods, being physically active, and having fun enjoying parks and the Lansing River Trail. The name 'CUFF' stands for Community United with Food and Fitness.
Credit Courtesy/City of Lansing Parks and Recreation Department
All this week, Current State has been broadcasting here at Adado-Riverfront Park, site of the Common Ground festival. This public green space alongside the Grand River is one of dozens of properties managed by the city of Lansing Parks and Recreation Department.