Michigan has its fair share of magnificent architects, one of whom is Minoru Yamasaki.
Author John Gallagher recently wrote a book about Yamasaki. He joined us today on Stateside.
Yamasaki lived during World War II, when life for many Japanese Americans was not easy. Some suffered in internment camps, and Yamasaki too faced discrimination.
“And yet he was so good at what he did and so brilliant that he got these sort of high-end commissions, you know, from early on designing a naval base for the military at the height of World War II,” Gallagher said.
After the war, Yamasaki moved to Detroit. Gallagher said he quickly became “the new modernist designer” in the city and its suburbs. He is known for buildings like the McGregor Memorial Conference Center at Wayne State and the One Woodward building.
Gallagher said Yamasaki's buildings feel connected to nature.
“Whenever you’re in one of them you begin to sense what he was trying to do, creating these oasis of tranquility for the people who would use his buildings,” he said.
As part of Michigan Radio’s Songs from Studio East series, this year we are exploring music that combines both contemporary and traditional music from around the world.
Today we met Ann Arbor native Tyler Duncan and Irishman John McSherry.
Despite being an ocean away, they play in a band together, called the olllam. The two have toured across the U.S. and in Europe producing a fusion of pop, rock and Irish music.
Duncan's musical career has included a variety of genres, like pop, rock and electronic. He has won international awards for playing traditional Irish instruments, like the uilleann pipes, a lighter version of Scotland's bagpipes, and whistles, a staple in Irish music.
He discovered Irish music when he was 11, when his aunt gave him a VHS copy of Riverdance. A pipe solo in the middle of the show grabbed his attention.
"As a kid I just was like, 'Woah, what is that? What is that instrument?'" he said. "And that got me really interested in the pipes."
Years later, as a 13-year-old Duncan moved to Ireland for a year with his family. His father took a sabbatical there.
He was given a tape he loved, which he later learned featured John McSherry, a rising star in the traditional Irish music scene. Then, when Duncan was in western Ireland, he had a chance to meet that musician.
He said it was a "serendipitous" meeting at a jam session in Milltown. Someone told Duncan that McSherry was at the bar. So Duncan started to stare. When McSherry's girlfriend noticed, the two introduced themselves.
That was the origin of the friendship that lead to the olllam.
The story of post-bankruptcy Detroit has largely been dominated by what's happening in downtown, Midtown and Corktown.
Businessman Dan Gilbert continues to reinvent and reshape downtown by buying buildings that have often sat empty for years. This week, Gilbert added the old Grinnell and Sanders buildings to his portfolio, which now stands at more than 80 buildings he owns or controls.
If everyone knows of 20th century Detroit as the Motor City, what's Detroit's identity today and what should it be for the future? Every Thursday on our Next Idea segment, we look at the innovations and we look at the new ideas that could reshape Michigan.
Today’s show was broadcast from the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History.
Dr. Charles H. Wright was a physician, a gynecologist and obstetrician. Through the years he delivered 7,000 babies in Detroit alone. He also founded the museum in his office by first collecting small items.
The 22,000-square-foot museum holds the largest exhibit dedicated to the history of African Americans.
Stateside's Cynthia Canty spoke with curator Patrina Chatman.
Dearborn has become a flashpoint for many people in America. Anti-Islam protestors carrying weapons have rallied in the city. The Arab American National Museum has responded by inviting people to better understand the city through food. Lester Graham recently joined a group going on a food tour called “Yalla Eat!”
There are big differences between the state House and Senate on what to do next about the budget crisis facing Detroit Public Schools.
The district needs a massive influx of state aid to stay open next school year. DPS interim superintendent Alycia Meriweather joined Cynthia Canty on today’s Stateside to explain how she hopes to elevate the quality of education for all Detroit public school students.
A Michigan oil spill is still bringing in new questions, even after its events took place over 30 years ago.
It was around 1980 when Canadian oil transport company Enbridge leaked five barrels of oil into the Hiawatha National Forest. However, they were only able to clean up four of the barrels, leaving the area contaminated to this day.
The same company owns 63-year-old pipelines that run under the Straits of Mackinac, causing concern over the safety of Michigan's shorelines.
Detroit Free Press reporter Keith Matheny joined Cynthia Canty on Stateside to understand why this spill still matters today.
It's been 20 years since the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was passed during the Clinton administration, and the TV and radio industry claims to still feels its effects.
The legislation sparked public controversy because of the changes it brought to broadcasting, having introduced media cross-ownership and being the first update in government policies for communications in over 60 years. Today, smaller, independent programmers continue to compete with growing media giants in securing a hold on the market.
The legislative committee in charge of examining what went wrong with the Flint water crisis has concluded.
When Midland Republican Sen. Jim Stamas was appointed chairman, he promised to take testimony on the mistakes that led to the Flint water disaster "at all levels of government,"and to ensure that something like this never happens again.
However, neither Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder nor any of the former emergency managers in charge of the city of Flint were called to testify.
Writer and poet Kelly Fordon grew up as a Catholic altar girl in the 1970s, and has published The Witness, a chapbook centered around sexual abuse by Catholic priests.
Chapbooks are used by poets to focus on a single theme or topic.
Fordon never expected to write against the Catholic Church, but believes that people shouldn't be so quick to defend priests accused of abuse. Fordon joined Cynthia Canty on today's Stateside to discuss The Witness.
Gender identity has become a big issue in the public discourse over the last few years. There has been a heated debate over legislation involving so-called "bathroom bills" and others involving the fight for legal protections for members of the LGBTQ community.
Members of Parliament in the United Kingdom are saying that Britain has a long way to go before transgender people achieve equality. Some MPs are seeking to follow the Republic of Ireland's lead and pass laws that would allow people to declare which gender they are, regardless of what doctors or anyone else says.
It’s hard not to picture the movie Taken when someone says “human trafficking” – the women lured into a Frenchman’s car and Liam Neeson’s ensuing action scenes.
But filmmaker Laura Swanson said that narrow idea of what human trafficking encompasses is misleading.
“Certainly that does happen, but that’s not the majority of the cases,” Swanson said. “And I think people really need to start reframing the ways in which they see human trafficking so that we can amend our laws and legal system to accompany what we need to do to get resources and to provide the best support for victims and survivors.”
Swanson’s documentary film Break the Chain aims to do just that – to reframe how we understand human trafficking.
When Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III was charged with a wide range of prostitution-related crimes, it managed to refocus attention on sex crimes and human trafficking in Michigan. Victims of these crimes include people forced to sell their bodies for sex and people used for cheap labor.
Break the Chain, a new documentary on human trafficking in Michigan, premiers next month.
Filmmaker Laura Swanson and human trafficking survivor Debbie joined Cynthia Canty on today's Stateside.
Throughout this year's presidential campaigns, there's been a lot of talk about immigration in this country. We've heard proposals ranging from reform that would be a roadmap to citizenship, to building a wall between the United States and Mexico.
We've had immigration arguments for a long time, about as long as the U.S. has been a country, and these debates always escalate when the economy takes a downturn.
When there are labor shortages, we turn to Mexico and encourage immigration. But the moment the economy tanks, we want to send those workers packing back to Mexico.