Sunday, June 30, 2013

ArtSees Diner Featured Guests

Please stop by and see the newest addition, ArtSees Diner Radio Mugshots! My featured guests and contributors are affectionately known as my "Mugshots!" They are "BigShots!" At ArtSees Diner, cup size matters, and these people are amazing! Each one of them is stellar, spectacular, STARS! Long ago I dreamed of a place where each special guest would have "there special mug!" So, in keeping with all of my goals and dreams, I have established my mugshot wall of fame. Each picture has been hyper-linked to either their show, or one of their shows if they are a weekly featured host. I am beholden to each and every one of my guests. Without them, it would just be ME, and well, that is not enough for ME, nor should it be for my followers. Speaking of followers, please stop by ArtSees Diner Radio and click on follow. I would love to know who the 60,000 listeners are! Much love and thanks for being a part of the ArtSees Diner family!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Mary's Apple~Yogurt Crepecakes

This Saturday morning is just like every Saturday morning. For as long as I can remember, the weekends bring about a desire to indulge in the breakfast realm. If I cannot go out and enjoy a wonderful breakfast somewhere, then I have to conjure up one of my forenoon delicacies. Today I wanted something with a little cinnamon apple-esque flair. From this desire came the following random, "a little this, a little that gastronomical satisfactory creation!" I bring you Mary's Apple~Yogurt Crepecakes! Served up right with a piping hot cup of Raven's Brew Coffee. This morning's brew? Ebony Pearls. Mary's Apple`Yogurt Crepecakes Main Ingredients 1 cup baking mix (I used Aldi's) 2 tbsp veg. oil 3 large eggs 1/2 cup milk 2 tsp vanilla 1 medium apple peeled and cored 1 tbsp cinnamon Filling Honey Yogurt (greek) Topping 2 tbsp Honey 2 tbsp pure maple syrup 1 tbsp cinnamon 2 tbsp butter Put all of the main ingredients into a blender (I used my bullet) and then blend to a very smooth, pour-able consistency. If for some reason it is not ultra smooth and the consistency of a nice gravy, then adjust mix/milk. Add ingredients in small amounts, remix. I took my large round, flat frying pan. Using my measuring cup, I scooped out 1 cup of the ultra smooth batter and poured it onto a very hot skillet that was pre-treated with cooking spray. Make sure that you smooth the batter all the way out to the edges. This will make one large pancake. When you see that there are bubbles all the way across the surface of your crepecake, then using a spatula gently go around the edges to ease up the sides. Turn your flame down (not easy with an electric stove, make modifications as necessary) There is no need to brown both edges, just make sure there is no runningness on the top. I have a metal handled pan so that I could place mine into the broiler on low for 1 minute to ensure a completed crepecake. Repeat this process. This recipe will give you a guaranteed 2 large crepecakes, with a possible smaller one. To remove them from the pan, (one at a time) take a plate and place it face down on top of the cooked crepecake, while still in the pan. Do a quick flip and your crepecake will land browned side up on the plate. Gently flip it so that the unbrowned side is facing up. Now, you will spread one tablespoon of yogurt (add more if you like it real creamy inside) and drizzle some honey over that. Next, gently roll up your crepecake. Set it aside until the other one is complete. In a small microwaveable container add the topping ingredients. Cook until the butter is melted. Place the crepes into the microwave for a little zapping warm up. Drizzle the topping over the crepes and serve! Enjoy your little forenoon treat!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Story of an Eagle and a Chicken

An eagle and a chicken Below is a story that I am sharing from my daily devotional. I think it speaks volumes to the way we speak to each other, about each other, and how innocently, or intentionally long-lasting those words can be. Be certain to read all the way down, feel free to pass this on to those you have spoken over. I am sharing this with you because I care about you!   The story is told of a man who found an eagle's egg and put it into the nest of a barnyard chicken.  The eaglet hatched with the brood of chicks and grew up with them.  All his life, the eagle did what the chickens did. It scratched the dirt for seeds and insects to eat. it clucked and cackled. And it flew no more than a few feet off the ground in a chicken-like thrashing of wings and flurry of feathers.   One day the eagle saw a magnificent bird circling overhead far above him in a cloudless sky.  He watched as the bird soared gracefully on the wind, gliding through the air with scarcely a beat of its powerful wings.   "What a beautiful bird," the young eagle said.  "What is it called?"   The chicken next to him said, "Why that's an eagle-the king of all birds.  But don't give him any mind.  You could never be like him."   So the young eagle returned to pecking the dirt for seeds, and it died thinking it was a chicken.     There are many things to be gained from the wisdom shared in the story. How it applies to you, to me, to us, is going to be different. What I have gleaned from it is this:  The words that we speak over each other can make or break the other. We can either be balcony people, or basement people. We can be encouraging, or discourage. We are sometimes both, and we do not even realize it. Relationships are like this: if you really like someone then their spontaneity is free-spirited, joyous, fun...if you find dislike with someone that very "attribute" becomes a failing, and the person is impulsive, irresponsible, etc. I am no different than everyone else when it comes to that.  

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Blues 101 by Douglas C. Rapier

The Blues 101: An Introduction by Douglas C. Rapier, Host of Brother Doug's Blues'Hour Willie Dixon, legendary Blues musician, producer and songwriter proclaimed “The Blues is the roots. Everything else is the fruits.” That’s what makes hearing the Blues for the first time both familiar and novel at the same time. Nearly every form of popular music has grown as a stem from its roots in the melodies, harmonies and rhythms of the Blues. Turn on the radio and chances are the music you’re listening to is resonating with the echoes of Bessie Smith, Big Bill Broonzy, Robert Johnson and countless other Blues artists. Musically speaking, the Blues is a very simple form. Most Blues feature a simple repeated chord progression played over a 12-bar or 16-bar rhythmic structure. The strength and vitality of the Blues lies in its tradition and in the form’s capacity to provide a context for a musician to give voice to personal expression through endless musical and lyrical improvisations. It is this potential for expansive, expressive improvisation which lead to the Blues giving birth to Jazz, R&B, Rock & Roll, Country Western, Heavy Metal, Soul and Pop. Despite the fact that the Blues is the foundation of so much of modern music, however, the Blues as a genre of music suffers from a severe lack of respect. Many make the unfortunate mistake of thinking, “Three chords, 12 bars: what could be easier?” Rock and Jazz players in particular tend to think they can knock-off some standard Blues riffs and presto! ‘Look, ma! We’re playing the Blues’. The truth is the Blues are easy to play – badly. To my mind, playing the Blues badly just might be the easiest thing in the world precisely because it is such a simple musical form. Its simplicity is deceptive. Ray Charles said, “It’s not that the Blues are complicated. They’re not; they’re basic. There are hundreds of versions of the same Blues – the same changes, the same patterns – just as there are hundreds of versions of the same spirituals. The music is simple. But the feeling – the low-down gut-bucket feeling – has to be there or it’s all for nothing.” The Blues - good Blues - cannot be played with bored nonchalance or condescension. Quoting Brother Ray again, “The cats in the band could play the Blues. That came first. Show me a guy who can’t play the Blues and I’m through with him before he can get started. If you can’t get nasty and grovel down in the gutter, something’s missing.” As with any Art form, it is passion that drives the Blues and that passion must be personal and intimate. A well-known adage goes ‘You’ve got to pay your dues to play the Blues’. That is the cardinal rule. It is undisputable. There can be no exceptions. To play the Blues, you must convey, with honesty and conviction, your personal experience of life on this planet. Living a life requires paying a price and those are the dues of the Blues – living a life. Except for the tiniest baby, everybody has a range of life experiences. All of them can be recognized, empathized and sympathized with by others. That’s what the Blues are about: voicing the shared human experience of joy, love, sorry, tragedy, life and death so that each of us knows we are not alone. Rather, we are in this altogether and so should take comfort therein. A commonly held misconception of the Blues is that the songs are always dismally melancholy. Nothing could be further from the truth. While the Blues arose from the shared experience of African-Americans suffering the hardships of poverty and socio-political repression, the Blues were sung as a musical release at parties and dances. The songs had to be joyous and hopeful to lift the spirits of party-goers and set the dancers dancing. The subject of the song’s lyrics might be petty or profound, raucous or reflective, ribald or tender. Very often, they were all these in a single ‘go’. Blues songs range from expressing soul-sick depression (e.g. Hell-hound on My Trail) to philosophical reflections on the human condition (e.g. Mother Earth) from quiet hope (e.g The Sun’s Gonna Shine) to joyful celebration (e.g Pride & Joy) from macho bravado (e.g. Hootchie-Kootchie Man) to hard-edged comedy (e.g. Give Me Back My Wig). Lyrics can be biographical, socio-political, philosophical, satirical, spiritual and meta-physical. Historically, the Blues grew out of the music of West Africa. The songs of the griot (the traditional minstrels) became spirituals and work-songs. In the late 1800s, southern African-Americans combined their music with European-American folk traditions. Most of the Blues recorded in the early 1900s were played on guitars and pianos. New, regional hybrids appeared. In the 1930s and 40s the Blues broadened its diversity, its instrumentation and its appeal. Some musicians continued to adhere to acoustic traditions while others took it to jazzier territory. Most Blues musicians have followed the lead of T-Bone Walker and Muddy Waters by playing the Blues on electric instruments. The main classifications of the many styles of the Blues are Delta Blues, Piedmont Blues, Jump Blues, Chicago Blues and Texas Blues. Delta Blues The Delta Blues style comes from a region along the banks of the Mississippi River that is romantically referred to as "the land where the blues were born." The Delta Blues form is dominated by fiery slide guitar and passionate vocals, with the deepest of feelings being expressed through the music. Its lyrics are passionate and in the highest flowering of blues songwriting stand as stark poetry. The form continues to the present time with new performers working in the older solo artist traditions and style. It also embraces the now-familiar string-band/small-combo format, precursors of the modern-day blues band. Piedmont Blues Piedmont Blues describes the shared styles of musicians from Georgia, the Carolinas, and Virginia as well as others from Florida, West Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware. The Piedmont guitar style is highly syncopated and employs a complex finger-picking method in which a regular bass pattern, played with the thumb, supports a melody on the treble strings. The Piedmont style is an extension of an earlier string-band tradition integrating ragtime, blues and country dance songs. Jump Blues Jump Blues is an up-tempo, jazz-tinged style of blues that came to prominence in the mid to late 1940s. Jumps Blues usually featured a vocalist in front of a large, horn-driven orchestra or a medium-sized combo with horns. The style is characterized by a driving rhythm, intensely shouted vocals, and honking tenor saxophone solos. The lyrics are almost always celebratory in nature, full of braggadocio and swagger. Jump Blues was the bridge between the older, guitar-based styles and the big band jazz sound of the 1940s. Chicago Blues The "classic Chicago style" was developed in the late 1940s and early 1950s by taking Delta blues, amplifying it and putting the basic string-band and harmonica group into a small-band context of drums, bass and piano and sometimes saxophones. This became the standard blues band lineup. The form is flexible enough to accommodate singers, guitarists, pianists and harmonica players as the featured performer. Texas Blues Texas Blues is characterized by a more relaxed, swinging feel than other styles of Blues. Its earliest incarnation occurred in the mid-1920s, featuring acoustic guitar-work that was almost an extension of the vocals rather than merely a strict accompaniment to them. The next stage of development in the region's sound came after World War II with a fully electric style that featured jazzy, single-string soloing over a horn section. The style stays current with a legion of regional performers working in small combos. The Blues have continued to develop in new directions. A brand new generation of young players have re-discovered and re-defined the Blues: Richard Johnson, Sean Costello, Eric Sardinas, the White Stripes, the Black Keys, Jon Spencer and Cold Hearted Bastards to name just a few. Home-grown ‘Blues only’ record labels like Alligator, Fat Possum, Blind Pig and Black & Tan Records, have been established around the world by ‘dyed-in-the-wool’ Blues fanatics carrying on the tradition of promoting the Blues. For the Blues is not just music of North America nor African-Americans, anymore. There are accomplished Blues artists and active Blues societies all over the globe. Blues festivals are held on nearly every continent but Antarctica. The Blues is alive and kickin’ the world over because it is ‘Real’, honest & passionate. Get real, get with it. Taste the sweet fruit of the Blues. Suggested listening: Robert Johnson: the Complete Recordings ‘Chess Blues’ (anything from the Chess Records catalog) ‘Martin Scorsese Presents: The Blues – a musical journey’ ‘When the Sun Goes Down –the Secret History of Rock & Roll’
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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Michiana's Best Bagel and Lox! Casual Chef Cafe

The Casual Chef Cafe, associated with the Pumpernickel Inn in Union Pier Michigan is the closest to New York style bagel and lox that we have found in the Michiana area. Not only is their food fresh it is served by people who seem to care more about the customer than their cell phones, or privte conversations! What is also wonderful about the dish is that is served layered with cucumbers. This added touch when blended with fresh lox, large bagels (of your choosing) red onion, capers (the petite kind my favorite) and all the usual fixings. The coffee they brew serve is Starbucks for a little added kick. All of their freshly made cuisine is a masterpiece. Feel like some gelato or maybe an amazing over-sized brownie? They know how to please the palette! Very reasonably priced!

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Sweet Baby Blue! Happy Birthday Nolan Robert!

We celebrate my Sweet Baby Blue this month! Nolan Robert was born this week 3 years ago. This sweet baby boy is precious, loving, hilarious, and loves his big sister Bella very much. Such joy fills all of our hearts with just the mention of this sweet little boy's name. MeMe loves you very much. Even before you were born I knew you. This poem was written when I discovered that my baby girl was going to add to her little family another precious gift from God. Sweet baby blue You came in time for summer June Riding on a wing and a prayer Sweet baby blue You touched my heart with love’s sweet tune Swinging on a front porch swing Sweet summer sun You’ve made life so much fun Sweet summer’s son Life has just begun Sweet baby blue Big Sister singin’ a hello tune She’s gonna take you you’ll be her tag along Sweet baby blue, You’re sweet summer’s son Sweet baby blue, Sweet baby blue, Sweet baby blue. I love you. (painted for Elyssa Ann LaLuna-Galloway by MeMe)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Voices From Behind the Veil

Voices From Behind the Veil
 by Mary E. Rapier-LaLuna

Touch me you will see that I am real as you,
I feel
Caress me you will feel flesh beneath your hands,
 like you
Do not be afraid,
as I have fear enough for all the world and more
I hurt when I am forced to be,
to wear to share, as I don't care
So often I grow tired of playing all the games 
when the rules I do not grasp
Scared is what I feel
when other speak of games that I can't share,
 I can't
When you put on your little dresses
It's pants that fit me best
When you dream of girls' caresses
its boys that I want felt
I hurt so bad you see,
I am just like you
But I am me.
 I cry, I cower, I fear
that I will never be loved like you are
Oh God when will I be free,
free to dance in “point” And spin and freely fly my hair,
admit that I am aware
 that I am not the man you think I should be
 I fly, I soar, I climb up high on ladders to the top
I dream as dreamers dream.
Not like other girls I scream
I hide in shame behind the boys,
I wish that I could be as they, and hold your hand,
I am the girl I want you to long to see.
We hide behind the veils of rules
that do not fit our claim to life and love and liberty.
Feel my pain and you shall see
that I am just like you But I am me.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Key of Love

5 years ago I set out to create a virtual diner. My overall vision was to create a place where musicians, artists, lovers, dreamers, believers, thinkers, philosophers, and just everyday people would come together in a "Third Place" as research and defined by Oldenburg. I myself had decided over 20 years ago what ArtSees would be and by definition it would be a "third place." Because I have never been financially capable of establishing a brick and mortar "third place," I settled upon a virtual Diner. And so it goes, I did and it has been a passion for many years. The mantra remains the same; "Changing the world, One Song at a time, One heart at a time." I had no idea how hungry people really are. No matter what social networking giants we create, there will always be people who will remain unheard as they are silenced out by the crowd of corporate enterprise. They will be silenced, disenfranchised, overlooked and undervalued. Not because they are not genius, amazing, talented beyond belief, but, because we put upon people the need to function the 9 to 5 reality. My vision is to create a place where anyone that wants to be heard will get their chance to be heard. I am ME, Mary E., and I have a dream. My dream is to sing my heart song. As I have grown older I may not be able to sing a high B-flat anymore, but, I am still singing and as I was reminded yesterday by Melanie Safka, after I looked up the singer of one of my favorite songs to sing when I am feeling like a little girl! I am just singing it in a new key. I am not getting Older! I am singing in a new key and that key is the key of LOVE! Join me at the ArtSees Diner table!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

ArtSees Diner Name Featured Radio Host by Blog Talk Radio!

I am honored to be a part of Blog Talk Radio. An amazing service that allows dreams to come true for many people! It gives a voice to many who would not be heard otherwise. I am so delighted, honored and blown away by this honor! Thank you Blog Talk Radio. If anyone would like to know how to become a part of either ArtSees Diner or Blogtalkradio as an independent organization, please feel free to contact me at

Adam Greenwell - A Vocation of Music Anthropology

Adam Greenwell - A Vocation of Music Anthropology 06/05 by ArtSeesDiner | Blog Talk Radio

Adam Greenwell, New Zealand "New Zealand based writer, musician, anthropology graduate and entrepreneur Adam Greenwell has explored how education and community-spirit are expressed through music for over twenty years. He is the author of "Wrestling and Nestling" a book of interviews and reflections on life in New Zealand. He founded the Town Green Music concept of community based music recording and performance. Greenwell rates his biggest achievement to date as"Get Some Vision: A Tribute to Leonardoda Vinci". This was a music album recorded by diverse New Zealand musicians featuring quotes by Leonardo recited in Italian by the Italians of Wellington, New Zealand's capital. The album commemorated the 500th anniversary of Leonardo's fresco The Last Supper in 1998. A global outreach followed whereby the album was mailed across the world as a gesture of international peace and goodwill. Warm replies were received from Blessed Pope John Paul II; President Vaclav Havel;Harrison Ford; Pierre Trudeau; President Nelson Mandela;Archbishop Desmond Tutu; Sir Cliff Richard; Mary Robinson; Lord Menhuin and many dignitaries. This project was supported and managed by Liz Greenwell, Adam's mother, who went on to write, produce and direct No Chance to Paint the Canvas; the world's first film about civil society on a global scale. Adam is production assistant to a documentary about Liz Greenwell's ongoing international work planned to be the "greatest example of global cooperation ever committed to celluloid."

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Patricia's Chocolates, A New ArtSees Diner Favorite

It was a wonderful Saturday. Like many Saturdays,Steve and I look forward to our drives up Red Arrow Highway. We visit either St. Joe's Michigan or South Haven. (We often times stop off at many places along the way as well) This particular day we chose St. Joseph Michigan. As we drove into town I saw the White Pine Winery Tasting Room, and it called me by name, "Mary, Mary!" I meandered in and Steve went across the street to a book store, (his favorite thing to do.) I was quickly treated like royalty by Sandy and she began to talk her wine. She is the co-owner with husband Dr. David Miller. We shared some conversation about wine, my desire to become more knowledgeable about wine, and especially regional wines. It was after sampling their amazing wine that I was introduced to Patricia's Chocolate. In particular the "Vintner's Choice" I purchased my own little treats to enjoy with my new bottle of White Pine Wine. I chose the Red Wines selection and enjoyed for a couple days nibbles of Blueberry~Tellieherry~ peppercorn Ganache, and Plum~Current Ganache, Cherry~Hibiscus Ganache, Allspice ~Balsamic Ganache, each one perfectly placed and decorated with intricate little designs. I once again felt like I was royalty!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

We Are What We Eat!

What is it about the Body and blood of Christ that is so important? Why was He insistent upon us eating and drinking in his presence and why did He call upon those who believe in him to share bread, and pass the cup? Why is that the act of eating, breaking bread and passing a cup the central part of so many religious expressions? Anthropologically eating and drinking together is an expression of profound friendship and family. We do not sit down and eat with enemies. It is only when we accept people as they are that we are able sit down and break bread. Jesus knew of the significance of eating with sinners, strangers, the outcast and the unlovable. He promises that those who eat his flesh and drink his blood, will have eternal life. But, it is not just eternal life, but, we have a fulfilled life with the promise that the Lord accepts us at His table, as we are, and through His love and promises we grow fuller and deeper lives influenced by His Grace and Love. We are what we eat.

The Voice of ArtSees Diner hits 30,500 Listens!

Since February 18, 2013 when we hosted the "Flower and Stone Book Launch" ArtSees Diner on BlogTalkRadio has experienced a wonderful success story. Topping 30,000 listens by June 1st was a goal and we hit it. Thank you to all the people who are making The Voice of a reality! Namely: Steve Champagne, Douglas C. Rapier, BlogTalkRadio, Nicholas Snow Merlin Gonzales and the many amazing musicians, authors and you our listeners! Without you, we would be just thinking about making the Diner a great place to visit.