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Best New "Venue" for Inventive Music and Pool

The Loving Touch

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22634 Woodward Ave, Ferndale; 248-546-3644

For a while now the Loving Touch has been something of a scenester's hub — we say that lovingly. Until recently, Ferndale's billiard hall (named for a decades-gone massage parlor that had inhabited its space) was the quick and dirty go-to joint for whenever there wasn't that much else going on — decent juke, decent beer, decent access to shooting pool and perhaps a fairly regular sprinkling of your other area friends who probably got the same idea. A recurring theme in local conversations was when the hell Ferndale might get its own Lager House — not some replica, but a modest joint where the underground, up-and-comers and smaller touring bands could roll in with some regularity (backed by a decent sound system). Well, the LT has boosted its music programming of late, and you can expect even more, as management is about to install a first-class sound system. And the new musical milieu? Owner Chris Johnston says they'll break "off some of the mold of the live music model," but expect inventive, quirky and interactive shows such as the current rock 'n' roll tacos events or the "In the Forest" DJ series on Tuesdays. No longer will this be the casual alternative, but a proper competitor for exciting live music entertainment. 

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