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As techno and electronica gain a higher and higher profile, the question of the music being an underground phenomenon becomes more of a moot point. Not only did the DEMF overcome controversy and weather, but official proclamations from the City of Detroit honoring Juan Atkins, Derrick May and Kevin Saunderson were just a peek at the coming official affection. Mayor Dennis Archer's recognition of Carl Craig went a long way in soothing whatever bruising had taken place by Craig’s dismissal as the festival's creative director. Now May has garnered another recognition, though not civic. He was awarded the Hennessy Black Music Month Award last week at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History as part of an annual kickoff to Black Music Month. While some may consider the Hennessy connection as more corporate co-opting, the company has been solid in honoring Black Music Month for many years — and BMM is something we should build on in honoring a host of musicians present and past. Also, let's not forget that Ford and Bacardi both graced the DEMF. With various folks moshing each other in the attempt to be all techno, one wonders if we'll soon be seeing more declarations at President Bush's official White House rave. The Hot & the Bothered was written by George Tysh and Larry Gabriel, and edited by George Tysh. E-mail him at

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