Dancing and Biking in the Streets

Letter From the Editor


Published:

Medic Alert: Anyone prone to catching “earworms” (scientific name: the Stuck Song Syndrome) should STOP READING NOW. You’ve been warned.

Ever since Jim McFarlin filed his story on the Motown Museum’s 30th anniversary, I’ve had a lot of songs running through my head. But at least in this case, they’re good ones. 

Other poor souls particularly sensitive to earworms will know what I mean. Someone mentions “bustle” during a bridal issue meeting, and pretty soon, I’m at my desk typing away while “Do the Hustle” rattles around in my head.

I had a lot of fun bandying about a host of wonderful Motown title-filled emails with McFarlin (a longtime friend and a colleague who “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” for an occasional deadline extension). I’m just sorry I couldn’t get a “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” or “Ball of Confusion” reference into the headline.

One quote really hit home: Motown Museum CEO Robin Terry wants to “entice the majority of Detroiters who have driven past the museum for years but never ventured inside,” McFarlin writes. She estimates that more than 75 percent of Motown’s visitors are tourists.

For a time, I was guilty as charged. Then “My Girl” took me there on a mystery date. Even before the recent enhancements, it was outstanding. 

My favorite part? The docent stopped in the middle of a room and started clapping a distinct rhythm while singing the “Baby, baby” opening to “Where Did Our Love Go?” He wasn’t showing off. He pointed up to a hole cut in the ceiling — a decidedly low-tech ’60s “echo chamber” that gave the clap its distinct sound. There were more revelations, such as the other houses on West Grand Boulevard where budding young stars would go to learn etiquette or how to dress. If you have not visited the Motown Museum yet, “Get Ready” to be on “Cloud Nine.”

Another story in this issue got a song stuck in my head; unfortunately it was not a good one. I love everything about the Slow Roll except it had me humming that awful “Slow Ride” by Foghat. (Sorry, mid ’70s; you were the absolute worst era for music. Don’t get me started on Styx or Journey.)

But I digress (again). If you’ve never witnessed Slow Roll, it’s one of the most diverse gatherings of metro Detroiters I’ve ever seen. Black, white, young, old; some with leather jackets, some with masks; some with expensive, tricked-out machines, others on simple, retro Schwinns. All have a great time.

Another very cool aspect of Slow Roll is their support of local businesses. One that doesn’t seem to need any help is Selden Standard. The Midtown restaurant is deservedly packing them in. 

Other stories in this issue include a huge show of illusionists coming to the Fisher; what to do when “School’s Out” and you need to find a summer camp for your kids; and a story about local sports heroes that makes you wanna belt out “We Are the Champions.” 

We also take an energetic look at fashion to shake off the winter doldrums and welcome spring. “I Second That Emotion.” But “Please Mister Please,” don’t make me start singing “Shake Your Booty.” Please?

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