News & Views » Columns

Metro Retro



22 years ago in Metro Times: In an article titled "Metallica's splendid noise," Thom Jurek explores the metal quartet just two years after a European bus crash killed bassist Cliff Burton and the band hired Michigan bassist Jason Newstead. "To hell with the Scorpions and their wimpy vocal harmonies," Jurek writes, "and Van Hagar too for all the hype and synthesizer efforts of their new disc. One interesting thing though: Elektra records would not let me interview Metallica for this story, because it was Van Hagar's tour." Newstead, a Battle Creek native, would leave the band in 2001. What was happening: The Four Tops at Hart Plaza, Herbie Hancock & Chick Corea at Pine Knob, Miles Davis at the Masonic Temple and Tammy Wynette at the Palace. 

13 years ago in Metro Times: "Nothing quite prepares the first time visitor, driving through battered east-side neighborhoods for the visual explosion on Heidelberg Street." A piece by Lynn Crawford details the Heidelberg Project, a community art installation on Detroit's east side since 1986. Crawford pulls a quote from critic Thomas McEvilley that yard art installations "seem naturally to relate a life among abandoned things with a sense of being abandoned by society. Yet in the process of recycling or refusing society's detritus, there is also sense of tenacious survival, of dogged faith in the possibility of rebirth." The Heidelberg Project recently opened administrative offices in Brush Park. What was happening: Marilyn Manson at Pine Knob, Wesley Willis at the Shelter, and the Detroit Cobras at the Magic Bag.

5 years ago in Metro Times: News Hits reports on the growing Medical Marijuana movement. Despite a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that federal agents are free to bust medical marijuana users in states that have legalized prescriptions for pot, metro Detroit activists say "they'll press ahead with efforts to put the issue on local ballots." Since then medical marijuana has been passed, however the arrests still continue as News Hits noted earlier this month with arrests of a Williamstown  Township "smokers club." Bruce Mirkin, spokesman for the Medical Marijuana Policy Project, said, "I would argue it's not a setback at all. You might see this continuing as a boomerang effect, strengthening the movement." What was happening: Comedian Steven Wright at the Meadow Brook Music Festival, Alkaline Trio at Clutch Cargo's, and Juan Atkins & Friends at Necto.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.