M.L. Liebler and the
Magic Poetry Band
Front: Bill Hulet
(drums), Jef Reynolds (bass, producer)
Back: Ron English (guitar, poet), M.L.Liebler (poet), Faruq Z.
Bey (saxophone, poet)
talented, creative ensemble of musicians is the brainchild of
Wayne State University professor (and St. Clair Shores,
Michigan's first Poet Laureate) M.L. Liebler. Over the
last twenty years, M.L. has combined his insightful, urban
poetry with the funky tones of modern jazz, resulting in a
perfect elision of sound and vision.
Since 1980, M.L. Liebler has taught literature and
liberal arts classes at Wayne State University, recently
taking his "Beatles and Music" class for a week-long
trip to Liverpool. He is the author of a number of
books of poetry, including The Moon a Box, which
won the 2005 Paterson Poetry Award for Excellence and
Written in Rain: New and Selected Poems (2001
finalist for the Paterson Poetry Award). His upcoming
book, Wide Awake in Someone Else's Dream, will be
published by Wayne State University Press. Over the
years he has performed his work with numerous musical
luminaries, including Al Kooper, Country Joe McDonald,
Jorma Kaukonen, Mike Watts and Professor Louie and the
Crowmatix, along with the Magic Poetry Band. His
poetry has taken him to Russia, Mexico, China, Israel,
much of Europe including Great Britain and throughout
the United States. In 2005, his hometown of St.
Clair Shores, Michigan named him their first Poet
Laureate. M.L. is the director of Metro Detroit
Writers. founding director of the Writer's Voice Project
and director of the Metro Detroit Writers' Organization.
A founding member of the "greatest jazz band that never
made it out of Detroit", he was the saxophone player for
Griot Galaxy, known for its intricate and unusual
metrical patterns. Since the late 1960's, Faruq has been
a highly respected figure on the Detroit jazz scene,
both as part of the experimental jazz movement and for
his resiliency in the face of change. He has
published both his own poetry and a book of musical
theory. Albums to his credit include Kins
and Opus Crampus, with Griot Galaxy; 19 Moons
and Ashirai Patterns, with the Northwoods
Improvisors and a host of others under his own name.
In addition, he has worked with WDET-FM radio host and
blues guitarist Robert Jones.
During the 1960's, Ron was the session guitarist for The Woolies
(who scored a regional hit with their version of Bo Diddley's "Who Do You Love"), a member of the Detroit
Contemporary 5 and a guitarist and poet involved with
the Detroit Artists Collective. His poetry was published
in the Workshop's magazine, Work, and in 1970 was
featured on a national public television jazz series
along with Joe Williams, Rahsaan Roland Kirk and his own
trio. He has backed both jazz artists such as Lyman
Woodard and pop artists like Mary Wilson, the Four Tops
and Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, and recorded with
Gladys Knight and the Pips. He has also recorded
and performed with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
In addition to his work with the Magic Poetry Band, Ron
has worked as the Minister of Music at Rosedale Park
Baptist Church. He has released a jazz and gospel CD,
Psalm 150 Devotions
Jef's experiences has taken him around the world,
backing artists such as Lesley Gore, Lou Christie, Alex
Chilton and Freddy "Boom-Boom" Cannon.
Jef spent his formative years playing with a collection
of great jazz musicians around Detroit, including
legendary Funk Brother Joe Messina and Ralph Armstrong.
He has also worked as an on-call session player at
Cloudborne, Ron Rose and Producers Color Service
Studios. He took part in the early recordings and
productions of the songwriting team of Michael King and
Gary Nester. Currently, Jef plays not only with
the Magic Poetry Band, but also with Detroit Music Award
nominee David Nefesh, songwriter Jo Serrapere and his
own Jef Reynolds Jazz Quartet.
Bill began playing drums at the tender age of six, and
studied drums under the late Ray Parker at the East
Detroit Conservatory of Music. After attending
Western Michigan University, majoring in music, he
commenced touring throughout the Midwest with countless
bands, an experience that has made him both resilient
and aware. He also has a number of recording
projects to his credit. He was invited to the
Magic Poetry Band as the resident beatnik drummer, and
for whatever reason the Magic Poetry Band continues to
be grateful that he accepted.
The Magic Poetry Band
The Kurl of the Butterfly's Tongue
Release Date: April 19, 2007
Available on CDBaby.com for purchase
Detroit Radio Co. Inc. All rights reserved.