I really loved Curt Guyette’s article on expanded spying ("Big Brother comes home," Metro Times, June 26-July 2). He interviewed some very key people with significant insights. I did wonder where the women were, however. I realize the ’60s were when women were beginning to realize that their voices weren't being heard. Anyway, I think it would've been good if you had noted why women weren't identified as either leaders or victims of government surveillance.
As a peace activist in the ’80s, I was under surveillance and even had my apartment broken into for a document I had spoken about on the telephone. I'm sure the feds were very disappointed that the paper they got was a public speech given by Daniel Sheehan of the Christic Institute. Apparently my description of it over the telephone must've sounded like it was something classified regarding U.S. policy on Nicaragua.
Thanks again for the good work. —Barb Beesley, Hamtramck
What a lovely thing it was to pick up Metro Times and find Frank Pahl featured on your cover with a lengthy article about him inside ("Pahl’s boutique," Metro Times, July 3-9).
I've known Frank for many years, and I've been lucky enough to witness many of his more interesting projects and permutations. Whether as a solo performer, an inventive collaborator or impresario of some deranged musical circus, Frank never fails to pull out all the stops and leave his audience cheering for more. It's long past time he got his due as one of Metro Detroit's native treasures. Thanks to Nate Cavalieri for this wonderful tribute to an exceptionally gifted musician. —Mary Fortuna, MFort81687@aol.com, Royal Oak
Missing the point
It is always disappointing to read a review of a hard-rock act written by someone who interprets music from an intellectual place rather than an emotional one. Brian Smith’s "Loathsome Lee" was just such a disappointment. If Smith spent less time discussing music in the window seat of his favorite coffee shop and more time playing air guitar in his living room, he might understand that heavy metal is meant to be felt, rather than analyzed.
Smith criticizes Mötley Crüe for its persona, arena-rock stage show and bravado (yet paradoxically goes on to fault Lee for lacking "strut or swagger"). Perhaps if some of today’s bands had a little persona (apart from brooding and misunderstood) and a little bravado, they might actually be able to fill an arena.
Fans didn’t stop going to arenas because the arenas aren’t exciting; they stopped going because the bands aren’t. Smith’s column completely missed the meaning of rock and roll — fun. —Jim Knapp, firstname.lastname@example.org, Ann Arbor
Web of regulations
Thanks, Sarah Klein, for a really excellent story about the CARP problem for small Web broadcasters ("Web castes," Metro Times, June 19-25).
There is one point I need to make concerning Bob Peyre and IPM Radio: he states that he doesn't play RIAA music so he doesn't have to pay RIAA fees. This is not true. Anyone who streams music over the Internet, even if they stream only to themselves and even if they stream only indie artists, has to pay copyright fees. It doesn't matter if they're streaming an RIAA artist or some guy who put together some noise in his bedroom. All songs played on the Internet are protected by the DMCA ruling, and the designated copyright collection agency, SoundExchange, has to collect copyright fees for every single artist, whether the artist knows it or not.
The only way to get around the copyright fee is to get a waiver from each and every artist whom each Web broadcaster plays. IPM is probably in a position to get a lot of waivers (which would also help solve his record-keeping problem), but most small commercial web broadcasters will find this very difficult. —Wanda Atkinson, St. Louis, Mo.