AADL-produced Podcasts

We also have digitized event videos available online. You can subscribe to the event podcasts at:
Audio: http://www.aadl.org/video/feed/audio
Video (ipod compatible): http://www.aadl.org/video/feed/video

#42 Ann Arbor Stories: The Chameleon

Media Player

September 14, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-chameleon.mp344 MBAudio

You're going to hear a story about a man. It may seem too good and too weird to be true, but trust me—what you are about to hear is 100% real. This is the story of William Douglas Street, better known as The Chameleon.

Music by Shout Out Out Out Out


Martin Bandyke Under Covers: Martin talks Jonathan Lethem and Kevin Dettmar, editors of Shake It Up: Great American Writing on Rock and Pop from Elvis to Jay Z.

Media Player

June 7, 2017

Jonathan Lethem and Kevin Dettmar's Shake It Up invites the reader into the tumult and excitement of the rock revolution through fifty landmark pieces by a supergroup of writers on rock in all its variety, from heavy metal to disco, punk to hip-hop. Stanley Booth describes a recording session with Otis Redding; Ellen Willis traces the meteoric career of Janis Joplin; Ellen Sander recalls the chaotic world of Led Zeppelin on tour; Nick Tosches etches a portrait of the young Jerry Lee Lewis; Eve Babitz remembers Jim Morrison. Alongside are Lenny Kaye on acapella and Greg Tate on hip-hop, Vince Aletti on disco and Gerald Early on Motown; Lester Bangs on Elvis Presley, Robert Christgau on Prince, Nelson George on Marvin Gaye, Nat Hentoff on Bob Dylan, Hilton Als on Michael Jackson, Anthony DeCurtis on the Rolling Stones, Kelefa Sanneh on Jay Z. The story this anthology tells is an ongoing one: “It’s too early,” editors Jonathan Lethem and Kevin Dettmar note, “for canon formation in a field so marvelously volatile—a volatility that mirrors, still, that of pop music itself, which remains smokestack lightning. The writing here attempts to catch some in a bottle.”

Martin’s interview with Jonathan Lethem and Kevin Dettmar was originally recorded June 7, 2017.


#41 Ann Arbor Stories: Skyscrapers

Media Player

August 31, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-skyscrapers.mp329 MBAudio

Skyscraper is such an elegant word. Two decades after it was first used in print to describe Chicago's tall-building craze, Ann Arbor had its first skyscraper—the seven-story Glazier Building. Twenty years later, the 10-story First National Building went up. This is the story of some of Ann Arbor's first skyscrapers, it's tallest building and the 30-story behemoth that never was.

Music by Chris Bathgate.


#40 Ann Arbor Stories: Train Crashes

Media Player

August 17, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-train_crashes.mp325 MBAudio

Ann Arbor has a rich history of railroads and trains. So so much rich history. This is not that story. This is a story of the most spectacular train crashes in Ann Arbor's history.

Listener Warning: Contain references to train crashes, more train crashes and a canary named Bobby.

Music by Diego and the Dissidents


Martin Bandyke Under Covers: Martin talks to author Drew Philp about his new book: A $500 House in Detroit: Rebuilding an Abandoned Home and an American City.

Media Player

May 23, 2017


File NameSizeType

Martin talks to author Drew Philp about his new book: A $500 House in Detroit: Rebuilding an Abandoned Home and an American City.

Drew Philp, an idealistic college student from a working-class Michigan family, decides to live where he can make a difference. He sets his sights on Detroit, the failed metropolis of abandoned buildings, widespread poverty, and rampant crime. Arriving with no job, no friends, and no money, Philp buys a ramshackle house for five hundred dollars in the east side neighborhood known as Poletown. The roomy Queen Anne he now owns is little more than a clapboard shell on a crumbling brick foundation, missing windows, heat, water, electricity, and a functional roof.

A $500 House in Detroit is Philp’s raw and earnest account of rebuilding everything but the frame of his house, nail by nail and room by room. We witness his concept of Detroit shift, expand, and evolve as his plan to save the city gives way to a life forged from political meaning, personal connection, and collective purpose. As he assimilates into the community of Detroiters around him, Philp guides readers through the city’s vibrant history and engages in urgent conversations about gentrification, racial tensions, and class warfare.

Part social history, part brash generational statement, part comeback story, A $500 House in Detroit “shines in its depiction of the radical neighborliness of ordinary people in desperate circumstances. This is an unforgettable, intimate account of the tentative revival of an American city and a glimpse at a new way forward for generations to come.

Martin’s interview with Drew Philp was recorded on May 23, 2017.


#39 Ann Arbor Stories: We Had a Zoo

Media Player

August 3, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-zoo.mp338 MBAudio

Bears. Bobcats. Badgers. Red foxes. Raccoons. And a wolverine. Once upon a time they watched from campus with their predatory eyes as students at the University of Michigan, townies, and delicious delicious children walked past.

Their territory on the corner near Geddes and Washtenaw - that's where these wild beasts stalked for more than 30 years. Stalked is a little hyperbolic. Watched. They watched. But with slavering mouths and sharp curved teeth.

We didn’t mention the cages. There were cages. And some fences. And zookeepers. Wait, we didn’t mention. Um, everyone … we had a zoo!

Parental Listener Warning: This episode contains references to a few animals that die, wild animals at sporting events and otter water slides.

Music by: Shout Out Out Out Out


#38 Ann Arbor Stories: Top 10 Astronauts

Media Player

July 20, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-10_astronauts.mp348 MBAudio

There are enough amazing Ann Arbor astronauts to create a top 10 list, so that's what we did. Men with righter than right stuff, pilots and scientists and world record holders who broke the outer limits of the atmosphere, touched the stars and zoomed around the surface of the moon on a frickin' lunar rover. Who's your favorite?

Parental advisory: This episode contains references to death, more death (we're not psyched about this) and the film Apollo 13.

Music by FAWNN.


#37 Ann Arbor Stories: MAILBAG #1

Media Player

July 12, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-mailbag1.mp330 MBAudio

Each episode of Ann Arbor Stories ends with our email address: AnnArborStories@gmaill.com and an ask to you, our great listeners, for feedback, story ideas or shockingly personal questions. We personally answer each email, but some of these questions are too good to keep to ourselves. Behold, our first mailbag episode, sharing the best questions and answers to create a few mini Ann Arbor Stories.

Our email address is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. So ask us anything. What was that old building back in the day? I heard about this murder—know anything about it?. What did Terry Whitman Shoultes really smell like? Ask anything, offer tips and share your feedback at AnnArborStories@gmail.com. We love you all.

Listener warning: This episode alludes to felching, giggles sophomorically at the word "Hiscock" and talks about freemasons.

Music by FAWNN, The University of Michigan Marching Band, Hollow & Akimbo, Lightning Love, and People Get Ready.


#36 Ann Arbor Stories: Housewife Flies Around the World

Media Player

July 6, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-housewife.mp336 MBAudio

The woman the papers called "the pretty Michigan housewife" had never left the United States before planning her 1967 flight around the world. Not in a modern jet, but in a 30-year-old plane that had 14 previous owners, one crash landing, and most recently was set ablaze for firefighting practice.

This was the plane 30-year-old Ann Pellegreno used to fly around the world, following the path charted by Amelia Earhart 30 years before. This is the story of the amazing Ann Pellegreno and her flight around the world.

Music by Stepdad.

This episode is part of the 2017 AADL Summer Game. There are sound effects in this episode that offer clues to questions on the AADL Summer Game site. Get the questions right and earn points and a special badge in the Summer Game.

Learn more about Ann Pellegreno's flight around the world in the AADL archives.


#35 Ann Arbor Stories: Walking Tour #1

Media Player

June 29, 2017


File NameSizeType
aas-walking_tour1.mp363 MBAudio

This first Ann Arbor Stories walking tour is intended to be listened to while actually exploring a few city blocks in downtown Ann Arbor. It takes listeners from the corner of Huron and Fourth, outside the Embassy Hotel all the way to the corner of Liberty and Ashley and the C. Walker Building. There’s no right or wrong way to experience this story. Ideally, you’ll stroll along the same streets we’re talking about, looking at the same buildings we’re describing and letting your mind wander back in time. But you could still listen to this in your car or at home and check these sites out in person later. Use Google street view. We're not telling you how to consume your media.

Music by Frontier Ruckus.
Listener warning: This episode contains references to sex, pornography, murder, riots, death, ghosts, gay bars and bankers.

For those of you who want to experience this podcast at ground level, a few tips:

First, if you’re not standing at the corner of Huron and Fourth Street, then get there before you start the episode. This walking tour will take you from this point to the corner of Liberty and Ashley. It’s not a long walk, but you will have to cross some streets and some of the sidewalks might be busy so please please please keep your head up and be aware of your surroundings, as tempting as it may be to submit fully to my words and the siren of history.

It’s often easier to see some of the taller buildings from the opposite side of the street, but it’s up to you on how you want to do this. Get up close to the building and touch the old brick, or step back and peer up into the sky. Maybe both. But watch out for cars and people - we're serious, we don’t want anyone getting hurt.

One last thing. If it’s the summer of 2017 and you’re playing the AADL Summer Game, three of the locations on this walking tour have signs in the window that get into the history of those spots and have special game codes that can be inputted at play.aadl.org for points. Visit the AADL website and search for Ann Arbor Stories for more details.

Go at your own pace. Pause, rewind, stop halfway through for a drink at a famous establishment. This is your walking tour, not ours. Enjoy.

Syndicate content