Ferndale Reads: Recommendation from Lisa Bales

This new series features book recommendations from Ferndalians, community members, business owners, various movers/shakers, and, really, any passionate readers we have here around town…

Not sure what you to read next?? Maybe one of your neighbors could help!

Our fourth installment features a selection from Lisa Bales a Ferndale resident for seven years (and who works in production with The Talent Shop). We became acquainted with Lisa last year when we started collaborating with her husband, Robert, who co-founded a metro-area culture/events app called LocalHop. (More on LocalHop at the bottom of this page; it’s a really cool app we use to let folks know about library events…)

Here’s Lisa’s pick:


Find Lisa Bales’ pick in our online catalog, here

Behind Closed Doors, by B.A. Paris, is a perfect example of how you never know what goes on between couples when they are in the privacy of their home.  The plot is dark.  It’s about as sick and twisted as it gets.  Yet somehow, you just want to keep reading.

Jack & Grace Angel, the two main characters with completely opposite intentions, share similar traits: patient, determined and most of all, calculating. When the mentally-ill sister of Grace becomes the pawn to Jack’s sadistic game, Grace will stop at nothing to protect her. In fact, she’s proof that no matter how devastating the situation may seem, there is always a way out.





More about the LocalHop App —
The Ferndale Library is proud to be listing our events on this new app which is designed primarily to help people find fun and interesting things to do in your community.  The app can be downloaded for Android or iPhones. Events found in LocalHop can also easily be added to a user’s Google or Apple calendars and then shared with friends over their preferred social networks. Visit www.getlocalhop.com to find out more and to download the app!

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Cut It Out: Collage Works by Laura Finlay – Reception August 3

Laura Finlay’s Collage Show “Cut It Out”
Ferndale Area District Library Art Exhibition
August 3 Reception
6pm – 8pm
Exhibit on display July 24 – August 26
More info: https://www.facebook.com/FADLArt/


The Ferndale Area District Library continues hosting exhibitions of new and diverse works from established and emerging artists around Metro Detroit on Thurs. Aug 3 with a reception for collage specialist Laura Finlay. “Cut It Out” presents several dazzling handmade collages with gossamer spills of warmly poly-chromatic hues merging the organic elegance flora and fauna with photographs of folks looking both eccentric and ordinary, merged into captivating new context flourished from her unique re-imaging of the everyday.


Finlay is a multifaceted artist who does it all, from acting and singing, to photography and ceramics. Three years ago she really found her forte in collage, a means of combining her sensibilities for sculpture and photography into an artform that refreshingly diverged from a post-millennial inclination towards more swiftly-assembled digital graphic design and instead harkened back to an analog approach that demanded meticulous arrangement and, above all, patience.

“By bringing together strengths of composition and craft, I found a playful new way of storytelling that fascinates the audience,” Finlay said. “ I free the elements from pictures and rearranging them in isolated situations, I tell a new story. It acts as a second chance at life for these old books and magazines that were probably in a basement or garage for years that would have ended up being thrown out.”

Collaging lets Finlay fully utilize an affinity for fine detail; outlets such as singing, ceramics, or acting require considerable concentration, but these collages indulge a freer, expressive curiosity typically activated in dream states, where disparate organisms bring their familiar traits together into intriguing fusions that secure strange and uncanny new synchronicities.  


Finlay said that her art “…is recycling,” and minimizes her carbon footprint in our “throw away” society. Some of Finlay’s visual  inspirations include Monty Python, Aardman Animations, Cindy Sherman, Nan Goldin, Gustav Klimt, and Andy Goldsworthy. Come see what’s possible with the old school approach of scissors, paper, and patience, with the handmade collages of Laura Finlay.

Laura Finlay
Exhibition on display at Fendale Area District Library
July 24 – August 26
RECEPTION: Thurs., August 3, 6-8pm, featuring DJ Ryan Spencer
More info: http://laurafinlaycollage.tumblr.com/



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August 8: Detroit Party Marching Band (it might get loud)

Stay tuned for photos (and hopefully some video) from this month’s installment of the Summer Concert Series (featuring Dan John Miller, of Goober & The Peas/Blanche)

Meanwhile, we’re already looking forward to the 3rd & final summer concert, featuring the exuberant rock/funk-meets-Sousa party parades of the Detroit Party Marching Band



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Reading Recommendations: MUSIC



Original Gangstas – Amid rising gang violence, the crack epidemic, and police brutality, a group of unlikely voices cut through the chaos of late 1980s Los Angeles: N.W.A. Led by a drug dealer, a glammed-up producer, and a high school kid, N.W.A gave voice to disenfranchised African Americans across the country. And they quickly redefined pop culture across the world. Their names remain as popular as ever–Eazy-E, Dr. Dre, and Ice Cube. Dre soon joined forces with Suge Knight to create the combustible Death Row Records, which in turn transformed Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur into superstars.

The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic – Jessica Hopper’s music criticism has earned her a reputation as a firebrand, a keen observer and fearless critic not just of music but the culture around it. With this volume spanning from her punk fanzine roots to her landmark piece on R. Kelly’s past, The First Collection leaves no doubt why The New York Times has called Hopper’s work “influential.” Not merely a selection of two decades of Hopper’s most engaging, thoughtful, and humorous writing, this book documents the last 20 years of American music making and the shifting landscape of music consumption.

1965: The Most Revolutionary Year in Music – During twelve unforgettable months in the middle of the turbulent Sixties, America saw the rise of innovative new sounds that would change popular music as we knew it. In 1965: The Most Revolutionary Year in Music , music historian Andrew Grant Jackson ( Still the Greatest: The Essential Songs of The Beatles’ Solo Careers ) chronicles a ground-breaking year of creativity fueled by rivalries between musicians and continents, sweeping social changes, and technological breakthroughs.

Hip-Hop Family Tree (graphic novel series) – The lore of the early days of hip hop has become the stuff of myth, so what better way to document this fascinating, epic true story than in another great American mythological medium — the comic book? From exciting young talent and self-proclaimed hip hop nerd Ed Piskor, acclaimed for his hacker graphic novel Wizzywig, comes this explosively entertaining, encyclopedic history of the formative years of the music genre that changed global culture. Originally serialized on the hugely popular website Boing Boing, The Hip Hop Family Tree is now collected in a single volume cleverly presented and packaged in a style mimicking the Marvel comics of the same era.

Your Song Changed My Life – Is there a song that changed your life? NPR’s music authority Bob Boilen posed that question to some of today’s best-loved musical legends and rising stars. In their answers the artists reflect on pivotal moments that inspired their work.

The Orbit Magazine Anthology: Re-Entry – With a mischievous globe-headed mascot that appeared in every issue and even on Quentin Tarantino’s T-shirt in Pulp Fiction, Orbit was an instantly recognizable arbiter of 1990s Detroit culture. But its irreverent tone and unique editorial features could be traced to two earlier local publications from creator Jerry Peterson, a.k.a. Jerry Vile-White Noise (1978-1980) and Fun: The Magazine for Swinging Intelectuals [sic] (1986-1990). In The Orbit Magazine Anthology: Re-Entry, author Rob St. Mary details the full run of White Noise, Fun, and Orbit, collecting two decades’ worth of Detroit’s alternative publishing history into an oversized, heavily illustrated volume that situates the publications in the city’s pop culture and media history.

Your Favorite Band Is Killing Me – Beatles vs. Stones. Biggie vs. Tupac. Kanye vs. Taylor. Who do you choose? And what does that say about you? Actually–what do these endlessly argued-about pop music rivalries say about us? Music opinions bring out passionate debate in people, and Steven Hyden knows that firsthand. Each chapter focuses on a pop music rivalry, from the classic to the very recent, and draws connections to the larger forces surrounding the pairing. Through Hendrix vs. Clapton, Hyden explores burning out and fading away, while his take on Miley vs. Sinead gives readers a glimpse into the perennial battle between old and young. Funny and accessible, Hyden’s writing combines cultural criticism, personal anecdotes, and music history–and just may prompt you to give your least favorite band another chance.

All You Need to Know About the Music Business – Whether you are–or aspire to be–a performer, writer, or executive, veteran music lawyer Donald Passman’s comprehensive guide is an indispensable tool. He offers timely, authoritative information from how to select and hire a winning team of advisors and structure their commissions and fees; navigate the ins and outs of record deals, songwriting, publishing, and copyrights; maximize concert, touring, and merchandising deals; understand the digital streaming services; and how to take a comprehensive look at the rapidly transforming landscape of the music business as a whole.

How Music Got Free – How Music Got Free is a riveting story of obsession, music, crime, and money, featuring visionaries and criminals, moguls and tech-savvy teenagers. It’s about the greatest pirate in history, the most powerful executive in the music business, a revolutionary invention and an illegal website four times the size of the iTunes Music Store.  Journalist Stephen Witt traces the secret history of digital music piracy, from the German audio engineers who invented the mp3, to a North Carolina compact-disc manufacturing plant where factory worker Dell Glover leaked nearly two thousand albums over the course of a decade, to the high-rises of midtown Manhattan where music executive Doug Morris cornered the global market on rap, and, finally, into the darkest recesses of the Internet.

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Prime Day (Shop online & support the library)

Tues., July 11th is Amazon.com‘s #PrimeDay and YOU can select The FRIENDS OF THE FERNDALE LIBRARY as your chosen charity! AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know: same products, same prices, same service, but a percentage of your purchases will support your charitable organization
To have your online purchases during #PrimeDay’s sales events go toward supporting Ferndale Area District Library, click here:


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Sweets for Sweet Music! Ferndale Library Summer Bake Sale July 24

The Ferndale Library’s Summer Concert Series is a big crowd pleaser with patrons because it brings in top-tier talents from around Michigan, each specializing in a range of genres. The library’s biannual bake sales help raise funds for these engaging and enlightening concerts, with delicious baked goods lovingly whipped up by local volunteer chefs. This pop-up bakery will feature addictive little treats to ornately adorned desserts, available all day on Mon., Jul. 24 (10am-8pm). And yes, there will be jam!

Sale of Baked Goods Raises Funds for popular Summer Concert Series Performances
from Popular Artists like Dan John Miller, and the Detroit Party Marching Band

But volunteer bakers are needed. Anyone can drop off their donated treats in the library atrium, starting at 9am and continuing throughout the day on Jul 24.

Summer Bake Sale 2017 (1)

To any bakers out there, or anyone with a sweet tooth, this is a great way to support your library as well as your community. The baking talents of the neighborhood take center stage. Also, each sugary package or decadent dish could serve as an ideal gift, an optimal addition to family cookout, or maybe just a well deserved splurge.


In addition to the funds raised by the library’s bake sales, the Summer Concert Series is bolstered by a Friends of the the Ferndale Library sponsorship. This summer, the energetic Raion Taiko Japanese Drum Ensemble kicked things off in June, and coming up next is acclaimed singer/songwriter Dan John Miller (of Blanche and Goober & The Peas) performing Jul. 11, followed by a boisterous visit from The Detroit Party Marching Band on Aug. 8.


FADL’s Head of Circulation Kelly Bennett will be coordinating the Bake Sale; volunteers can email via kelly@ferndalepubliclibrary.org or call at 248-546-2504 ex. 697.


“We’re looking for a wide variety of treats,” Bennett said. “Vegan, gluten-free and diabetic options are great – we’d also appreciate it if the baked goods are split up into small packages for easy sale.”

Staff will be present in the library atrium at 9 am on Monday morning to accept donations for the day of the sale. For those looking to buy the yummy baked goods Ferndale has to offer, the sale will run 10 am to 8 pm on Mon., Jul. 24. Cash and check will be accepted as payment.

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Pig & Whiskey Preview/Playlist (Available at your Library)

Pig & Whiskey 2017 is coming up next weekend!


The library’s west parking lot will be used to host this epic summer festival. FYI–the library will be open on Friday & Saturday of that weekend for regular operating hours.

Meanwhile, you can find succulent bbq treats and other culinary delights from 18 area restaurants, chased by the bite of great whiskey and bourbon from more than 60 Great Lakes regional distilleries!

But this post is to showcase some of the excellent local bands who will be performing on the main stage, down Troy St (between the WAB & the Emory).

The full lineup is available here.

What we’ve got streaming below are standout tracks from some Pig & Whiskey performers who ALSO have some of their recent albums circulating in our library card. If you like what you hear, you can use your library card to check out these albums TODAY!


Duende – s/t

Duende – Remnant of a Remnant


Eleanora – Recollective 


Electric Six – Fire

Electric Six – Switzerland! 


Frontier Ruckus – Audiotree Live Session via HOOPLA

Frontier Ruckus – Deadmalls & Nightfalls 

Frontier Ruckus – Enter The Kingdom

Frontier Ruckus – The Orion Songbook 


The High Strung – Get The Guests 

The High Strung – Ode To The Inverse…


Libby DeCamp – Cross Sections


Ryan Dillaha & The Miracle Men – Miracles In Mono

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