Seasaw, Canceled Plans, Young Ritual Local Show at Mac’s Bar

If you’re having summer concert withdrawals and are looking for the perfect fall show, look no further! As soon as I heard the news that Seasaw, Canceled Plans (solo set), and Young Ritual would hit the stage at Mac’s Bar in Lansing on October 3rd I’ve been buzzing with excitement! I spoke with Michaela Stock of Canceled Plans and Dylan Grantham of Young Ritual to get the scoop on the upcoming show.

Both Stock and Grantham are excited about the gig and are eager to share the stage with some new faces. “I’ve never shared the stage with seasaw or Young Ritual, but I couldn’t be more excited. I’ve been gigging since April of 2017, and I’ve never gotten to share the stage with another girl who runs the show. I’m a big fan of seasaw and their work, so it’s an honor to have this first and this show alongside two talented and beautiful women.” Stock writes. It’s remarkable to see such genuine support for other female artists in a male-driven industry. One of the things I love most about supporting my local music scene is seeing the interactions and friendships forming between artists that share the stage whether it’s for a single gig or for a tour.

IMG_3108Not only are Stock and Grantham ready to play with some new faces, but they are also thrilled to get back to Mac’s Bar. For Grantham, this is his first time in performing in Michigan’s capital. “This will actually be my first show in Lansing, so I can’t wait for that part. I definitely have some tricks up my sleeve to make a good first impression.” I’m eager to see what kind of tricks he has to make this show a memorable one. Grantham has been working on finishing up his first EP, and released the first single “Prime” last month! He’ll definitely be playing some new music at the upcoming show along with old favorites.

Stock, on the other hand, is a Lansing native and she’s pumped to get back to her hometown and play at one of her favorite venues. “The last time I played at Mac’s was in September of 2017. It was my first full-band show, and I was opening for Michigander, a band I had followed as a fan since high school. That was for sure a night I’ll never forget. Every time I walk through the doors at Mac’s I’m hit with gratitude and nostalgia for the space. I have so much more to say, but I’m going to leave some stories for the show!” I’ve never seen

IMG_7791While remembering Mac’s Bar and what the venue means to her, Michaela lights up and goes into every detail of the venue and how much she loves it. “I spent the latter half of my teenage years studying the scribbled walls in Mac’s Bar at shows. It was my first “dream venue” to play a show in because I had some of my first experiences with live music in that space. I even met my best friend at Mac’s at a concert. We screamed all the words to the headlining band’s set, and it’s been history ever since. Mac’s Bar did, in fact, end up being the first place I’d ever played a billed gig with tickets, a sound-check, and other artists back in April of 2017. I remember wearing a black dress, carrying my guitar case and pushing open the big wooden door thinking, “What the HECK has my life come to?” (For the record, I’m still figuring that question out.) It was so special.”

Do not sleep on this concert! Each of the acts has a different energy to bring to the stage and it’s sure to be a good night. Get tickets to the show here!

-Swaggie Maggie

Music Festival Lineup Recap — BLOGGing March 2018

Summer is the best season for countless reasons, but for music lovers, summer marks the start of festival season. Many people love music festivals because they are able to see a bunch of their favorite artists in the same venue, while enjoying the energy and atmosphere. This summer, the line ups are what dreams are made of, including classic bands, hot new artists and even reunions!

June 7-10 in Manchester, Tennessee is Bonnaroo Music Festival, and the lineup has a lot of people buzzing. Artists set to perform include Muse, Bassnectar, Paramore and Dua Lipa making it perfect for fans of any genre. One artist that has caught the interest of many fans is Bon Iver. Bon Iver is scheduled to perform two unique and separate sets, which should be a special experience for fans.

Firefly music festival in The Woodlands of Dover, Delaware has been a favorite for both indie and hip-hop lovers alike since 2012. June 14-17 will be filled with performances from Logic and Kendrick to Foster the People and alt-J. Big names for the festival include Eminem and The Killers and a special reunion performance from the Arctic Monkeys —their first live show together since 2014! A lineup like this would make a road trip out east worth it.

Vans Warped Tour is making its final cross country run after 23 years in operation. While many fans who have been going to the festival when it comes to their city for years are sad to see the fun come to an end,  but the lineup makes it sting a little less. All Time Low, The Maine, Mayday Parade, Sum 41, Taking Back Sunday and more can be found playing the festival this summer, as well as additional special guests that are yet to be announced. This may be the last Warped Tour, but it’s sure to be one of the most memorable.

Music festivals can be great experiences, and many fans wait the whole year for summer to roll around so they can attend one. People often take road trips to see their favorite bands and end up falling in love with music they’d never listened to before while waiting in the crowds. Make sure to check out the full lineups, and see all of what festival season has to offer.


Maggie Morgan is a junior majoring in Professional Writing with a concentration in Creative Writing. Hobbies include: spending all of her money on concert tickets, trying to convince Green Day to let her be their friend, geeking out about music history, dreaming of writing for Rolling Stone. You can follow her on instagram at @swaggie_.maggie.

The Original American Genre Why we should bring Jazz music back into mainstream media — LISTENing December 2017 Print

Characterized by improvisation and syncopation, jazz has been moving audiences and music lovers since its emergence at the beginning of the twentieth century. Over the years, it’s as if jazz has gotten lost in the ever-changing, ever-evolving music industry. In today’s culture, a popular notion is that jazz is reserved for elevators, Christmas parties and your grandparents’ car. Recently, jazz has been making its way back into the popular atmosphere through people who love the genre and are ready to bring it into the spotlight.

Damien Chazelle, writer and director of the two widely successful hits, “Whiplash” (2014) and “La La Land” (2016) brought jazz back into mainstream music. “Whiplash” follows the story of Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller), a first-year jazz student studying drumming at a prestigious arts conservatory in New York City. There, he faces the famed conductor, Terence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons), who has an abusive teaching style. “Whiplash” was Chazelle’s foundation for his next masterpiece, “La La Land.” The musical romantic comedy follows an aspiring jazz pianist (Ryan Gosling) and an aspiring actress (Emma Stone) as they navigate their life in Hollywood, their careers and their relationship. After the film released in theaters, it was hard finding someone who hadn’t seen or didn’t love it because the movie does a great job of confirming that jazz music is cross-generational. Fans from older generations love the film for nostalgic reasons while millennials are convinced by the power and appeal of Ryan Gosling. “La La Land” is now critically acclaimed and boasts many different accolades including Academy Awards for best actress, best director and best original music score.

MSU’s College of Music offers a unique jazz studies program that “is committed to the highest level of performance, mentoring, education and community outreach.” The program allows countless students, including recent graduates Pierre Charles III and Eric Smith, to hone their craft in a space solely dedicated
to jazz.

Charles graduated from MSU in 2016, and has always loved jazz. “I grew up with jazz music playing in the house. My father’s roots are in New Orleans, so listening to jazz music was a big part of my childhood.” He began to fall in love with the genre when he decided to take up piano as a child. “Improvising and creating music on the spot – that is the essence of what jazz is.” To Charles, jazz is more than just a style of music. “Jazz is a completely American art form, and much of American pop music of today actually traces its roots to jazz and blues.”

Smith graduated as a piano major in the class of 2017, and like Charles, was introduced to the genre by his family. “My earliest memories associated with jazz are at my grandparents’ house listening to big band music and singers like Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Nat King Cole.” He describes the importance of jazz as, “Jazz and blues are the foundation of so much of the music, art and culture we experience in America (and consequently, around the world). To truly enjoy, appreciate and understand where we as a society have come from, and why we as a society create and consume the things we do; we cannot exclude or understate the importance of jazz and blues music and culture.”

As for jazz making its way back into mainstream music, it is possible! The important thing is to educate people on music history and remind pop music fans of its foundations in jazz and blues. Charles believes, “If jazz existed in a mainstream space, like on the radio, more people would start to appreciate the music.” It helps that films like “La La Land” have mainstreamed jazz and shows people that the genre is cool, complex and intricate while teaching about its history and individuality. If other media outlets can show jazz in that light, the style has a chance of finding its way back into the spotlight.

Maggie Morgan is a junior majoring in Professional Writing with a concentration in Creative Writing. Hobbies include: spending all of her money on concert tickets, trying to convince Green Day to let her be their friend, geeking out about music history, dreaming of writing for Rolling Stone. You can follow her on instagram at @swaggie_.maggie.