Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Celebrate 2 Years of Cellarmen's this Tuesday Night

This Tuesday night head to Hazel Park to celebrate 2 years of Cellarmen's! It's hard to believe it has been two years since we had a chance to get a sneak peak of the new brewery that was going to help make Hazel Park the new hip town in Metro Detroit. Since then, this place has become hugely popular. They host some amazing shows, have their very own comedy night, and continue to make great beer, cider and mead.

For the brewery's big anniversary they are doing what they do best and releasing some special new brews. One of those is the new Watermelon Saffron Mead, their special "Gold" Bottle Release. They will also have Imperial's new food truck on site, so you can pick up some delicious tacos to go with your beverages.

The anniversary party runs from 5 p.m. until midnight, this Tuesday, October 17th. Cellarmen's is located in Hazel Park at 24310 John R. To see a full list of upcoming events at Cellarmen's, head over to Cellarmens.com or give them a like on Facebook here.

We'd like to congratulate the guys at Cellarmen's on 2 years! We wish you continued success! Cheers!


Win Tickets to See Ghostface Killah

Everyone knows that Wu-Tang Clan ain't nothing to fuck with, so don't fuck around. Go see Ghostface Killah when he comes to town to play El Club this Thursday. The New York-born hip-hop artist rose to fame with Wu-Tang's album 36 Chambers and went on to record 12 solo albums. When people talk about the greatest MCs of all time, his name is definitely mentioned. Which means that when you get the chance to see him spit it live, you take it.

Ghostface Killah will perform live at El Club this Thursday alongside King Visionary and DJ Sicari. Tickets to attend the show are $30 and they can be purchased here. You can also win a pair of tickets to the show courtesy of Party Store Productions. To enter, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject line #killah. We will draw one lucky winner on Thursday and they will get to attend the show with a friend for free!


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Win Tickets to Rock Out with The God of Party Mr. Andrew W.K.

2017 hasn't been the easiest year. It started off with the inauguration of Donald J. Trump and has consisted of lots of big natural disasters, heart wrenching injustices, mass shootings, and the loss of some really big musical talents. It's been hard to turn away from all of the bad news and just kick back, sometimes you need to let loose and party. There is no better way to do that then to rock the fuck out with the king of the party, Andrew W.K!

The Party Never Dies Tour is taking over Detroit this Wednesday, October 18th. Mr. W.K. will be playing with his full band and Downtown Brown will be opening the show. Tickets to attend the event range from $10 to $26. You can purchase advance tickets here. You can also win a pair of tickets to party till you puke by emailing your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject line #cantstopwontstop. We will draw one lucky person this Wednesday morning and they will get to bring a friend to the party on Wednesday night for free! 


Friday, October 13, 2017

Win Tickets to See Elder with King Buffalo and Bison Machine

This Sunday night, Party Store Productions brings Elder to the stage at El Club! The Massachusetts based band just released their latest album over the summer. Reflections of a Floating World is the fourth full length from Elder. You can give it a listen below.

After releasing the new album, Elder headed out on a European tour with King Buffalo. Now the two just kicked off a North American tour earlier this week. So far the first few shows have sold out, so we're sure the Detroit date will follow that trend. Tickets are only $15 and can be purchased in advance here. Thanks to Party Store Productions, we are also giving away a pair of tickets to this show. If you're feeling lucky and would like to enter to win those tickets, send your name over to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #elder in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Sunday morning and they will get into the show that night with a friend for free. 

Detroit's own Bison Machine is joining Elder and King Buffalo for this one. Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. and all ages are welcome. 


Spend Your Friday The 13th with Jason Voorhees

It doesn't get much spookier than Friday the 13th in October and this Friday is just that! Watch out for black cats crossing your path, don't step on those cracks on the sidewalk, and watch out for guys named Jason, especially if they're wearing a hockey mask. Or if you don't believe in all of that superstition, you can get extra spooky and find Jason on the big screen at the Main Art.

This Friday, the 13th and Saturday, the 14th the Main Art will be showing the original Friday The 13th for their Midnight Madness series. The original film was released back in 1980 and still sends chills down people's spines today. Since it's release, there have been numerous sequels released in the series and Jason and his hockey mask have become iconic figures, giving people nightmares to this day! Here's your chance to watch the original on the big screen again and remember how it all started.

Tickets to see Friday The 13th at Midnight Madness are only $7. You can purchase yours in advance here. The Main Art Theatre is located at 118 N. Main Street in Royal Oak. The theatre has a long list of spooky titles lined up this Halloween season. To see the full schedule for Midnight Madness, click here.

Stay safe out there kiddos! 


Thursday, October 12, 2017

Heavy & Beyond - Keeping Detroit Metal

If you've noticed two dudes with long hair playing heavy metal records at a show recently, chances are it was probably Anthony Franchina and Alan Hoover, a.k.a. Heavy and Beyond. Most recently, you may have seen them DJing Timmy Organism's record release and European tour kick off show at Ant Hall. They have actually been doing their thing for over a year, and now the Heavy and Beyond guys are branching out. In addition to their domination as Detroit's best metal DJs, they will now be booking shows too!

Their first one is coming up on October 19th when they're bringing Manilla Road to Corktown Tavern along with Sauron and White Magician. Tickets for the show are only $14 in advance or $15 at the door. In addition to saving yourself a buck by buying tickets in advance, you will also get entered into a sweet giveaway. Check out all of the details below.

The next time that you can check out a Heavy and Beyond DJ set is this Friday night at Small's when Zeke heads to town. Detroit's own Against the Grain is currently on tour with Zeke and Golden Torso is also on the bill for Friday night. Heavy and Beyond will also be DJing the Wiccans record release show on November 4th at Outer Limits. And last but not least, they will be hosting their own "Vinyl Up Your Ass" DJ night at Small's on November 9th. This new monthly event just kicked off a couple of weeks ago and it sounds like it was a blast! Kick ass tunes, great drink specials, and there were even free nachos! What more could you ask for?

To stay up to date on everything that Heavy and Beyond has coming up, make sure you head over and give them a like on Facebook and follow them on Instagram. To purchase tickets to their upcoming shows, head over to heavyandbeyondbooking.bigcartel.com.


24 Hour Giveaway: Pears @ Small's

New Orleans punk rockers Pears are currently out on tour across the US. This Friday night they will be making their way to town to hit the stage at Small's in Hamtramck. Pears has a new split coming out on Fat Wreck Chords with Direct Hit. The new record, Human Movement, will feature new tunes from each of the bands as well as a cover of each other's songs. It's set to be released on November 3rd. You can pre-order your copy here and when you do, you will get an instant download of a couple of tracks. Check out one of Pears' new songs off the split below.

Joining Pears on the bill Friday night are their tour mates Big Ups and Russian Girlfriends, as well as Detroit's own S.U.B.. Tickets for the show are $13 in advance or $15 at the door. Thanks to Black Iris Booking we are also giving away a pair of tickets to this show! To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #pears in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Friday morning and they will get into the show that night with a friend for free. 

Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. on Friday and S.U.B. will kick things off shortly after that. All ages are welcome to attend this one. For more info, click here


Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Hip in Detroit Talks all Things Theatre Bizarre with Creator John Dunivant

Theatre Bizzare is the Halloween party to end all Halloween parties. It has transformed from a dark carnival that took place near the old State Fair grounds to a grand event that takes place at one of the city's most decadent buildings, the Masonic Temple. It attracts thousands of people from all over and it is a one of a kind experience that you can't get anywhere else. The event, which was created by John Dunivant, has become a Detroit staple. So we asked him to come into the studio to talk all things Halloween and Theatre Bizarre with us! We will be going live on PodcastDetroit.com this Sunday at 5 p.m. You can listen to the show by clicking here. You can also listen to all of our past podcasts by clicking here. If you love Detroit, history, and Halloween, you're going to love this podcast!


Take a Tour of The Fisher or The Guardian with Pure Detroit

The Fisher Building and The Guardian Building are two of Detroit's most famous landmarks  Each has a rich history that is really fun to learn about. The Fisher building was built in 1928 and it was designed by the legendary Albert Kahn. Construction on The Guardian began in 1928 and completed in 1929. Both buildings are draped in marble and limestone and are designed in the art deco style of that era. Walking through them is amazing and each is a sight to be seen.

Which is why it's really cool that Pure Detroit is doing free tours of both buildings with a guide that will tell you all about the history and design of the historical landmark while you walk through it. They have multiple tours that take place on Saturdays and Sundays. They are free to attend and you do not need to pre-register to be apart of them. Kids are also welcome. To learn more about their tour please click here. This is a cool fun and free way to experience the history of this city!


Monday, October 9, 2017

Win Tickets to See The Toadies and Local H at St. Andrew's

In 1994 The Toadies burst onto the music scene with their hit song "Possum Kingdom" off their debut album Rubberneck. The ode to murder was one of the biggest hits of the time. It was often played on alternative rock stations with hits from other bands like Local H, who made it big with their 1996 hit "Bound to the Floor". Both bands were able to get enough radio play from their freshman albums that they were able to cultivate long-term careers. They have both continued to write music and tour throughout the last twenty years.

The two bands have teamed up to play St. Andrew's together this Friday, Ocotber 13th and we have one pair of tickets to take you back to the 90's. If you would like to enter to win a pair of tickets to attend Friday night's show please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject line #grungeforlife. We will draw one lucky person and they will get to attend the show with a friend and hear some of the best music that the '90s had to offer live and in person! Tickets for this one start at $15 in advance.


Win Tickets to Attend Valley Hush's Sendoff

Last year Valley Hush released a killer self-titled album at El Club. Since that release, they have done a few small tours around the US opening for bands like WAVVES and they have been featured in commercials for shows like the hit Pretty Little Liars. In other words, they are finally getting some well-deserved attention and they are ready to try to make it on their own.

Three-fourths of the band will be heading out to The West Coast to see if they can make an even bigger splash in that pond. But, before they go on their way they are throwing one more party right here in Detroit. This Friday, October 13th they are playing at the new Ant Hall in Hamtramck. They have invited Mega Powers, Mango Lane and The True Blue to open their last local show and the are charging $10 in advance and $15 at the door to come out and play.

We also have one pair of tickets to give away to the show courtesy of Ant Hall. If you would like to get into the farewell show for free you can email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject line #dontgo. We will draw one lucky person and they will get to attend Friday's event with a friend for free.

On a personal note, we wish Valley Hush nothing but happiness and success on their journey. We hope to see you around again sometime and we look forward to seeing one last show this Friday!


24 Hour Ticket Giveaway: The Bronx at El Club

This Tuesday night you can sit on your couch and watch the latest episode of some show on prime time TV or you can head down to El Club to see a bad ass rock show! Black Iris Booking is bringing The Bronx to the stage along with Plague Vendor and '68. The Bronx just released their fifth studio album a few weeks ago. V (or BRVNX) is just as energetic and intense as the band's last 4 albums, with a mixture of heartfelt and politically driven lyrics. We highly suggest that you check it out here! You can also watch the video for the song "Two Birds" below.

Trust us when we say that you do not want to miss The Bronx when they come to town this Tuesday night. They always put on a hell of a show! Tickets for this one are $17 in advance. You can purchase yours here. We've also teamed up with Black Iris Booking to give away a pair of tickets to this show. To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #brvnx in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner Tuesday morning and they will get in the door that night with friend for free. 

We've already said it a few times in this post, but don't miss this show, Detroit! Doors are set to open at 7 p.m. and all ages are welcome. 


Don't Miss the Motown Mansion Estate Sale

The Motown Mansion was originally constructed in 1917 by Nels Michelson, a Danish immigrant who owned a variety of successful lumber and timber companies in Michigan. It was constructed in Italian Renaissance Revival style and the original house was 8,500 square feet. It featured nine bedrooms, five full baths, four fireplaces, and a carriage house large enough to accommodate five cars and house two apartments above it.

In 1925, Leonard Augustus Young purchased the house and renovated the property. He added ornate, carved marble mantelpieces to the fireplaces and installed custom light fixtures and bronze doors in each room. He also added a 4,500 square-feet, athletic building that housed an Olympic-size swimming pool, bowling alley, gymnasium, and billiards room.

Pablo Davis purchased the property in 1964. Davis split the property into two parcels and his friend stayed in the athletic building while he lived in the main house.

Then, in 1969, the property's most famous owner moved in, his name was Berry Gordy. He bought the property after opening his hit-making music company Motown Records. The magical music maker threw lots of huge parties while he lived in the residence, which he retained until 2002 when Cynthia F. Reaves bought it from him. The house had remained virtually unlived in and untouched for over 20 years when she purchased it. So her first priority was to restore it, which she did until its sale for $1.65 million last year. The new owners have decided that they would like to share some of the estate with the world, so they have staged a huge estate sale to take place this week.

The three-day sale will take place this Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The auction will feature an array of items including, “The Steinway piano once owned by Gordy and played by the likes of Smokey Robinson and other Motown artists... as well as never before seen Gordy home movies and slides, and a selection of Motown awards”.

The estate sale runs from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Thursday, October 12th, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. on Friday, October 13th and 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Saturday, October 14th. The auction will take place at 7 p.m. on Friday (doors at 5 p.m.) and you can preview the auction items here.
It's $5 to get inside and check out the estate sale, but it's also a cool chance to see inside of one of Detroit's coolest buildings. So it might be worth the five just take a look around. To learn more about the sale click here


Friday, October 6, 2017

Say So Long to The Sanctuary with Terror, Bent Life and more!

Tonight Detroit will say goodbye to one of its most loved DIY venues, The Sanctuary. The venue took over an old church on Outer Drive and turned it into a great place to see live music. Over the last few years they have had a ton of Detroit area bands on their stage as well as some great national acts. It was always a super cool place to go, grab a couple of beers on your way down, hang out with friends, and see an awesome show. Unfortunately, as they say, all good things must come to an end. After recently being broke into yet again, the venue has decided that it's time to call it quits. 

This Friday, October 6th, the space will be holding its last show, and it's definitely going out with a bang! Terror will be hitting the stage along with Bent Life, Left Behind, and Detain. Tickets for the show are only $15. You can still purchase them in advance here. We're sure this one will be packed. So you might want to think about picking those tickets up ahead of time if you want to be sure that you get in the door for this, it should be pretty epic. Cover will be $17 at the door. Doors are set to open at 7 p.m. tonight and all ages are welcome. 

We want to say a special thanks to Maxwell Lange for putting his heart and soul into this venue. You gave Detroit an awesome space to have a ton of great shows and create some great memories. Thank you for everything you've done for Detroit and its music scene!


Win Tickets to See Tim Barry at Small's

This weekend Tim Barry is headed to town to play Small's in Hamtramck. He's set to hit the stage this Sunday night, October 8th along with Gallows Bound and Roger Harvey. Barry just released his latest album High on 95 last month. Check out the music video for the title track off the new album. 

Tickets for Sunday's show are $13 in advance. You can pick yours up here. The night of the show, cover will be $15 at the door. Thanks to Black Iris Booking, we are also giving away a pair of tickets to this show! To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #barry in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Sunday morning and they will get into the show that night with a friend for free! 

All ages are welcome to attend this one and doors are set to open at 7 p.m. 


Thursday, October 5, 2017

Party with Caveman & Bam Bam at the "Early Man" Release Party

Photo by Brian Rozman
Detroit's favorite prehistoric duo is releasing a new album and throwing a kick ass party this Friday night! Caveman & Bam Bam are releasing a new full length record, entitled Early Man. It's being released by none other than Detroit's own Jett Plastic Recordings and to celebrate this new release, they are taking over Ghost Light in Hamtramck this Friday night. They have invited their friends The Beauticians and Tin Foil to join in on the party and the Keep on Trash DJs will be keeping the tunes going all night long. Give the track "Gotta Do Something" off of the new record below.

Caveman & Bam Bam will have the record available at the release party for $15. But, you can get it at a discounted rate if you really get into the spirit for this party! If you show up dressed like a caveman or cavewoman, dinosaur, a rock, or something else equally as awesome, they will knock $5 off and the record will just cost you 10 bucks.

Cover to get into the show is only $5 and the party is set to kick off at 9 p.m. for more info on this show, head over to the Facebook event page here


Take a Tour of Corktown on your Bike!

Want to take a look inside one of Detroit's oldest neighborhoods? This Sunday Wheelhouse Detroit Bike Shop will take you on an in-depth tour of Corktown. This 10-mile ride will take a look at the area's Victorian homes in the area, historic buildings and churches, the lot where Tigers Stadium was once located, Michigan Grand Central Station and some of the area's urban farms. While you're riding, tour guides will discuss the changes the city has gone through and its history. Tour guide Kelli Kavanaugh is an 18 year resident of the historical area and she is full of interesting information about her hometown.

The ride is 10 miles long and will take about 3 hours to complete. The group will be making a refreshments stop at Batch Brewing Company while they are out! The cost is $30 to ride with the group and $40 if you need to also rent a bike. This is the group's last ride for the year so you don't want to miss it! YOU MUST PURCHASE tickets to be part of this event and there is a limited number of spots, so click here to ensure your spot today!


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Fallout Fest Returns to Ant Hall and We've Got a Pair of Tickets with Your Name on Them!

Fallout Fest was created in 2013 as a fun way to close out the festival season in Detroit. Over the last five years, the event has grown in popularity. As the show became more popular, the venues got bigger and they added more stages to accommodate more bands. This year the festival will take place in the biggest venue to date with a super stacked lineup that includes BARS OF GOLD, Sweat, Handgrenades, Jerry Dreams, Tart, DUDE, The Messenger Birds, Siamese and Bogart. This year the show will feature three stages that are located within walking distance of each other. This includes Ant Hall, Ghost Light Hamtrmack, and Seven Brothers. There will also be a few vendors in-house for the event, this includes Trowt, Ironclad Tattoo Co., Calvin VanKeersbilck Artist, and Custom Jewelry by Cearlock Creations! Pietrzyk Pierogi will even be serving up food if you get hungry during the show!

Doors for the show open at 7 p.m. this Friday and it's only $10 to get in the door. You can purchase advance tickets here, or buy them with cash at the door. Ant Hall is located at 2320 Caniff.

Here's a guide to parking around the event to make things easier on you.
We also have one pair of tickets to give away to the show courtesy of Ant Hall/Ghost Light, two of our favorite new venues. If you would like to enter to win a pair of tickets, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject #fallout. We will draw one lucky person the morning of the show and they will get to attend for free with a friend!


Win Tickets to See Touché Amoré at El Club

This Friday night Touché Amoré hits the stage at El Club in Detroit! The band is currently on tour with Single Mothers and Gouge Away. They recently released a 7" of their live on BBC Radio session. You can pick yours up here. This is the third release in the series.

Tickets for Friday's show are only $15 and can be purchased in advance here. Tickets are going fast, so if you want to ensure that you get in the door, make sure you buy your tickets now! If you're feeling lucky though, we are also giving away a pair of tickets to this show. To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #touche in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Friday morning. 

Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. for this one. For more info, click here


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Win Tickets to See the Pixies at The Fillmore this Friday

Musical legends the Pixies have released 6 full-length albums throughout their career, including last year's full-length album called Head Carrier. The band also has had some serious lineup changes, the current lineup features Black Francis on vocals and guitar, David Lovering on drums, Joey Santiago on Lead Guitar and keyboards, and Paz Lenchantin on Bass. They want to put on a great show, so they are on tour with a brand new stage set designed by their longtime production manager Simon Foster and lighting designer Myles Mangino.

The Pixies will be bringing their live show to The Fillmore in Detroit this Friday, October 6th. Tickets to attend the show are $35 to $100 a piece and they can be purchased here. We also have one pair of tickets to attend the show with a friend for free courtesy of our friends over at Live Nation. If you would like to enter to win them, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with the subject line #legends. We will draw one lucky person early on Friday and they will get to attend the show for free!


Win Tickets to See Wayne "The Train" Hancock

"Wayne Hancock is the real deal" and this Wednesday night, you have a chance to experience that first hand! He is making his way to Ferndale this week to share his tunes with everyone at The Loving Touch. If you haven't heard of Wayne "The Train" Hancock before, his music mixes rockabilly with Western swing, blues, and old-timey country. Give him a listen below.

Joining Wayne on Wednesday night are Cash O'Riley and The Robert Lewis Band. Tickets for the show are only $15 and you can purchase yours in advance here. Thanks to Black Iris Booking, we are also giving away a pair of tickets to this show to one lucky winner. To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #thetrain in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Wednesday morning and will send them details on how to claim their prize.

Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. on Wednesday and all ages are welcome.


Monday, October 2, 2017

Add a Pop of Color to Your Life with PhotoPop Prints!

Have you ever been up front at a show and watched the photographers try to get a shot of the band? It's interesting to watch them run back and forth trying to take some photos because most venues require that you have a photo pass to shoot the band and even if you have a photo pass they only allow you a few songs to get the shot. Plus, it's loud, it's dark and people are a pushing you and kicking you around while you work. All of these obstacles can make capturing the essence of a live show impossible, but some photographers always seem to be able to get the shot.

CJ Benninger is one of those people. He is low-key one of the best live photographers this city has ever seen. During the first 10 years of this decade, he was front and center at every important show and he has an enviable archive of the Detroit music scene. He has always had an eye for capturing the magic on camera and I've always been impressed by his work. But, his latest project, called PhotoPop Prints, might be my favorite thing he has ever done.

CJ Benniger recently announced that he had teamed up with his wife Lauren to create a new line of pop art that you could purchase called PhotoPop Prints. Together they have curated over 75 amazing shots that are visually stimulating, colorful, and perfect for the person who wants to really dress up a wall. These stunning shots turn everyday objects like a cup of coffee or a stuffed animal into something magical and eye-catching. The prints that they have created take the ordinary and make it extraordinary.
I reached out to the husband and wife team to ask them a little more about their latest project. I also talked to CJ about his journey and his history in musical photography. Check out what they had to say about starting a company together and visit their new website to purchase a print for yourself!

A little interview with CJ:

HID-When did you get your first camera?
CJ- "I got my first camera in 1997. My Grandpa gave me his Minolta 35mm when I took my first photo class during my junior year of high school."

HID- What inspired you to pursue a career in photography?
CJ- "It's just what I wanted to be doing, even though at the time I started I had no idea how I would make a living at it. After I graduated from high school, I was actually enrolled in the Culinary Arts program at Schoolcraft College and decided two weeks before classes started that photography was really what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. So, I took a semester off, worked to save up money, and in January I started the photo program at Oakland Community College."

HID-When did you start shooting live music?
CJ- "I started shooting shows my junior year of high school, which was 1997. A lot of my friends were in bands, so I started shooting their shows, and then I just got in the habit of bringing my camera to any show I went to. I loved doing it- I shot so many punk and indie shows. I have enough good imagery to fill a coffee table book. Back then you didn't need a photo pass for most shows, even at Saint Andrew's. Then in 1999 I started shooting for Real Detroit, and they got me into larger shows like Weezer, Travis and Richard Ashcroft."

HID You are amazing at portraits, what attracted to you to shooting these up close and personal pictures of people?
CJ- "I've always liked photographing people, specifically trying to capture a certain side of someone and to be able to tell a story through just one image. Creating a photo that is engaging, that you want to spend some time looking at is always my goal and I want the viewer to be asking themselves questions about the subject."

HID- What's your favorite live show that you ever shot and why?
CJ- "I've shot so many (hundreds?) shows over the years, it would be hard to choose one. I definitely have some favorite live images that I've captured. I always loved photographing Hot Water Music, and The Constantines. They are two of my favorite bands, and always put on such a great live show."

HID-Who are some of your favorite photographers?
CJ- "Richard Avedon, Danny Clinch, Eric Ogden, Chris Buck"

HID-Do you have formal training in photography or did you teach yourself?
CJ- "I felt very fortunate to have had two full years of photo classes in high school. My school (Livonia Stevenson) was one of the only schools in the state that had a color darkroom. So I had two semesters of black and white and two of color. After graduation, I went to Oakland Community College and got an Associate’s Degree in photography, and then immediately after that, I started assisting a lot of well-established photographers in the Detroit area. I learned so much as an assistant, especially since the industry was switching from film to digital at the time. While assisting, I also started getting shooting jobs on my own. I built up a client list and eventually started my own photo firm, CJ Benninger Photography."

HID-What advice would you give to someone who wants to pursue a career in photography?
CJ- "Oh man.........if you really want to do it, you have to commit. Do test shoots regularly. Shoot, shoot, shoot. Save money and invest in equipment. Figure out what you enjoy shooting and how you enjoy shooting it, and develop a style. When you start assisting, work with as many different people as possible. You'll learn something from everyone, regardless of what they shoot. You'll learn technical aspects as well as how to act around clients, and how not to act. Treat everyone with kindness. Pay attention, because I learned that most photographers (in my experience) aren't going to say "hey, check this out" or "let me teach you how to do whatever". They are being paid to do a job, and that is what they are focused on. But if you pay attention and watch them work, you can learn so much. One other thing that I would say is that Detroit is a tough market when you are starting out. You may want to consider moving to a larger market like LA, New York, or even Chicago. There are more opportunities for jobs, and you'll have a better chance of working with people on higher-profile jobs. Do it while you're young. You can always move back, and if you do, you get to bring everything you learned back with you."

A little interview with CJ and Lauren Benninger, creators of PopPrints:

HID-Why did you decided to create PhotoPop Prints?

Lauren- "The idea for the site came about after CJ surprised me with a Valentine’s Day gift of a 30X40 photo of a dozen donuts from my favorite donut shop, Avon Donuts in Pontiac (I am completely OBSESSED with donuts). The photo was simple but striking- the colorful donuts were set up in a grid on a stark white background. It was bright, bold, and made me happy every time I looked at it! Other people seemed to really like it too, and many friends and family members who saw the photo asked if they could get a copy for themselves. And from that, the idea for PhotoPop Prints was born!"

HID- How did you work together to come up with all the different layouts/shots?
CJ and Lauren Benninger- "Coming up with the ideas for the images on our site is a collaborative process. We draw inspiration from the world around us, taking “ordinary” objects and using them to create really extraordinary art. It can be anything- flowers from our yard, our kid’s toys, favorite foods- even something as simple as a cup of coffee. We’re also drawn to objects that have a story to tell or a history, like vintage items. Things that are worn or have imperfections often make the most fascinating and beautiful subjects."

HID-What is the hardest part about working together being that you are a husband and wife raising three kids?
CJ and Lauren Benninger- "We did the majority of the work for the site- planning, shooting, editing- after the kids went to bed, so that was definitely a challenge. It was so tough some nights, after working all day and taking care of the kids, to not just pass out on the couch and binge on Game of Thrones. We really had to dig deep some nights and just ignore how tired we were or how messy the house was- snacks and alcohol helped a lot when we needed a little extra motivation!"

HID- What is the best part?
CJ and Lauren Benninger- "It was exhilarating to work on this project together. Having a creative focus and a collective goal (that didn’t involve our day jobs or the kids) was so fun and was a great distraction from the insanity of our everyday lives! Being able to just put everything aside for an hour or two a night and work on something purely artistic was, and continues to be, pretty inspiring for us."
HID-What’s your favorite print in the current collection? Why?

Lauren- "It’s so hard to choose!! I think our floral stuff is really beautiful. I am especially partial to the ombre carnations- the color is so rich and detailed- they really jump off the page. I also love the matchbooks, which are vintage matchbooks that my grandparents collected during their lives while traveling."

CJ- "I really love “All The Dinosaurs”, and of course, the vintage cameras!

HID- Do you think you will continue to put out new prints?

CJ and Lauren- "Absolutely! We plan on putting out new prints on a very regular basis. Seasonal collections are also going to become a part of our site. We’ve currently started work on our upcoming holiday collection, which will feature all sorts of fun stuff for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah and New Years."

HID- Do your kids have a favorite print?
CJ and Lauren- "Our four-year-old twins are very…um, opinionated and yes they definitely have favorites. Luke loves the matchbox cars, probably because the photo was shot using his car collection and Grace, our little animal lover, gets excited every time we shoot stuffed animals. Our twins share a bedroom, so we put a very large 30X40 shot of the gummi bears on the wall above their beds- it adds a lot of color and fun to their shared space. Our one-year-old daughter Rose doesn’t really have a favorite, but if we had to guess it would probably be any one of our food photos- she loves to eat!"
HID-Do your kids like to get their pictures taken?
CJ and Lauren- "The only pictures that our kids like to take are selfies- they LOVE taking selfies. If we leave our phones unattended the twins (and even the baby) usually steal them and end up taking like, 50 selfies at a time."

I don't know about all of you but I am obsessed with this new project and can't wait to finally own a print! If you are interested in purchasing a print you can order something here! Or reach out to the couple and have them create something custom for you! Don't forget to follow them on Insta here!


Win Tickets to See Skylar Spence aka Saint Pepsi

In 2013 Skylar Spence burst onto the music scene as Saint Pepsi. His music style, known as vaporwave, had hints of funk and disco mixed with futuristic sounds created by the artist. Under the surname Saint Pepsi, Skyler has released 8 full-length albums in two years. Since then, he has only released a handful of singles, including three that have come out so far this year. Skyler has also been doing some touring and will actually be making an appearance in Detroit to play El Club this Wednesday, October 4th!

Jonah Baseball will be opening the show and tickets to attend are $12 in advance and $14 at the door. We also have one pair of tickets to give away to the show courtesy of Party Store Productions. If you would like to attend the show with a friend for free, please email your full name to hipindetroit@gmail.com  with the subject line #saintpepsibitch. We will draw one lucky person on Wednesday morning and they will get to attend the show with a friend for free.


Friday, September 29, 2017

Say Goodbye to The Five Piece Problem and Hello to Lagerheads Tonight at The Ghost Light

This Friday night, The Ghost Light in Hamtramck has a great show lined up for you! They are bringing The Footlight District to town from Chicago, along with Detroit's own The Five Piece Problem, Party Days and Jackson & The Poolsharks.

This is actually a very special show for The Five Piece Problem because this will be the last show for the band as you know it. They are switching things up a bit, and with that comes a new band name. The new band is called Lagerheads. They actually already have a single out and they will be passing out sampler CDs at tonight's show. You can give the new song a listen below.

This should be a super fun show from start to finish! As a side note, we're pretty big fans of Jackson & The Poolsharks, so we highly suggest you get to this show early to check out all of the bands on the bill. Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. and admission is free, even more reason to go! The Ghost Light is located at 2314 Caniff in Hamtramck. For more info on this event, click here


Corktown will be Wide Open this Sunday

This Sunday, October 1st, 3.5 miles of Michigan Avenue in Detroit will close down for the day. Detroiters are encouraged to come out and enjoy the space to roam around and get moving. This event, called Open Streets Detroit, was created to get the community out and about to engage in some physical activity and to interact with each other. Attendees are encouraged to bring their bikes, skateboards or running shoes to get out and move around the open streets. All of the businesses in Corktown will be open for the event and there will be tons of places to sit down and take a break if you get tired. A lot of the stores and the restaurants in the area are even running specials for the day! To learn more about open streets Detroit and which streets will be closed click here.


Thursday, September 28, 2017

This Friday the Scarab Club Celebrates 110 Years

The Scarab Club was formed in 1907 and it was first named the Hopkin Club after its founder, a marine painter named Robert Hopkin. Its purpose was "to promote the mutual acquaintance of art lovers and art workers; to stimulate and guide toward practical expression the artistic sense of the people of Detroit; to advance the knowledge and love of the fine arts in every possible manner; and to maintain a clubhouse for entertainment and social purposes as well as to provide working and exhibit facilities for artist members." It was renamed The Scarab Club in 1913 when a Detroit architect, named Lancelot Sukert, designed the current clubhouse at 217 Farnsworth. The club was featured in Life magazine in 1937 and a lot of important people have signed the building's ceiling beams in the lodge, this includes John Sloan, Diego Rivera, Pablo Davis, Marcel Duchamp, Norman Rockwell, and John Sinclair. The building is not only beautiful, it is full of art and history.

Over the last few years, Detroit has experienced a rebirth of art and a whole new community has formed within the city. The Scarab Club has embraced this change and hired a new director to curate a new art scene inside the club's walls. This Friday, the club will celebrate its 110th birthday by reflecting on where it all started, by celebrating the art of its founder Robert Hopkin. The night will feature music from the in-house band and a photo booth to capture a memory within the historic building walls. There will also be a strolling dinner and an open bar! Tickets to attend the celebration are only $40 a person ($35 for members) and the event takes place from 7:30 p.m. until 11 p.m. this Friday, September 29th.


Win Tickets to See Against Me!

Against Me! is out on the road on a North American tour and they're making their way to Detroit this weekend! They are set to hit the stage this Sunday, October 1st at The Majestic Theatre. Joining them on the bill are their tour mates Bleached and The Dirty Nil. Tickets to see this incredible lineup are only $20 in advance. You can pick yours up here.

Thanks to our friends at The Majestic, we are also giving away a pair of tickets to one lucky reader. To enter to win these tickets, send your name over to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #againstme in the subject line. We will draw our winner on Sunday morning and will send them details on how to claim their prize. Good luck!


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Rebel Spies Releases "Rise!" Friday at The Sanctuary

This Friday night Rebel Spies will be releasing their long awaited debut full length album. We've been big fans of this band for awhile now, and after hearing the new tunes, we're even bigger fans! The new record is called Rise! and it's being put out by Underground Communique Records. You can pre-order the album on colored vinyl or CD here. You can also get a little preview of the album by listening to a few tracks below.

If you like what you hear, you'll definitely want to make your way to Rebel Spies' Record Release show, happening this Friday night! They will be taking over The Sanctuary in Detroit along with their friends in Break Anchor, The Bloody Lips and The Wretched Sights. Admission to the show is only $8, which is quite the deal for this lineup!

Since our friends in Rebel Spies really want to party with you Friday night, they are letting us get a couple of people into this show for free too! We will be giving away 2 guest list spots to Friday night's show. To enter for a chance to have your name on the list, send your name over to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #rise! in the subject line. We will draw 2 lucky winners on Friday morning and will send them details on how to claim their prize. 

You definitely do not want to miss this one! Rebel Spies always puts on a great show. Add Break Anchor into the mix, and we're sure this will be an epic night! Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. on Friday night and all ages are welcome.


Grand Trunk Pub has a New Happy Hour

Have you ever visited Grand Trunk Pub? The pub has a rich history that includes being the former location of the Grand Trunk Railroad Ticket Office. Today, it is a great place to grab a good meal and a stiff drink. They also recently announced a brand new happy hour!

Their new happy hour will run from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. on weekdays. During this time you can get a smaller version of their three biggest sandwiches and a variety of different drink specials. This includes $3 bottles out of the mystery tub, $2 Michigan draft beers, (they have over 24 on tap), $6 Manhattans, $1 off all Michigan spirits, $3 fireball shots, and $2 well drinks!

The Grand Trunk Pub is located at 612 Woodward Ave. The bar is open from 11 a.m. till 2 a.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. till 2 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. They serve food from 11 a.m. until 12 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. until midnight on weekends. To learn more about the space's long history click here.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Win Tickets to See Agnostic Front's 35th Anniversary Tour

It has been 35 years since the legendary Agnostic Front hit the music scene. They helped initiate the term hardcore, emerging from the punk scene with a heavier and meaner sound than many of the other bands of their time. Over the years they have held strong and not only remained relevant in the music scene, but continue to inspire other bands and have a huge fan base.

Agnostic Front is currently out on tour in celebration of this milestone anniversary. They are headed to Detroit this week and will be hitting the stage at El Club this Wednesday night. Joining them on stage are Detroit's own Cold as Life and Poison Tongues. Tickets for this show are only $16 and can be purchased in advance here. The day of the show the price will go up to $18.

Thanks to Black Iris Booking, we are giving away a pair of tickets to this show! To enter to win, send your name to hipindetroit@gmail.com with #35 in the subject line. We will draw one lucky winner on Wednesday morning and will send them details on how to claim their prize.

Doors are set to open at 8 p.m. on Wednesday and all ages are welcome. To learn  more about Agnostic Front and their 35 year run, check out front man Roger Miret's new autobiography, My Riot: Agnostic Front, Grits, Guts & Glory.


Get to Know the Bats in Your Backyard at TechShop Detroit

Some people think they're adorable, others think that they will turn into a vampire and suck their blood. However you feel about bats, they play a very important part in nature and TechShop Detroit is teaching you all about them this weekend! This Saturday, TechShop is bringing the Organization for Bat Conservation out to teach the public about these awesome winged creatures. They will even have live bats with them to show you that these little guys aren't so scary, they're just a little misunderstood.

The bat talks will be taking place this Saturday, September 30th at 11 a.m. and 12:30 a.m. The talks are free to attend, but TechShop asks that you please RSVP. Slots are filling up fast too! So click here to save your spot now. While you're at the shop, you can also build your very own bat house to help protect bats in your own backyard. This is a super cool event, that you won't want to miss!

For more info on Bats of the World: Live Bat Presentation, head over to the Facebook event here. For more info on Tech Shop Detroit and their upcoming events, give them a like on Facebook here.