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The Buffalist: Sep 14-20


“I have loved
But I’ve lost all that they gave me
They all try to save me
But I’m seeing this thing through
And these feelings of remorse
They leave me no recourse
So I pour another glass
Fail again and again

But as long as there is whiskey in the world
We can drink away the heartache
We can drink away the girls
Oh we long to love but we never touch
As long as there is whiskey in the world”

“As Long as Their is Whiskey in the World” Good Morning, Magpie

-Murder by Death


5.  Trail Running Film Festival @ Screening Room Cinema Cafe (Sep 10)

Kicking off the 30 city North American tour, Buffalo is the FIRST city in the country to view these adventurous films. Watch daredevils conquer treacherous trails, battling climates and terrain that most of us have never faced. These films will have you sitting on the edge of your seats, leaving you feeling as though you could overcome anything you encounter. They will have beer from Southern Tier Brewing Company for you to sip on as you are taken on a virtual run through forests, up mountains, beyond emotional obstacles and across the finish line.  All proceeds from this event will benefit Erie County Parks and help maintain the great trails we utilize and love!  (by Brian Stewart)

4. Of Montreal @ Babeville  (Sep 14) 

The eclectic rock group Of Montreal will be at Ani Difranco’s Babeville and tickets are still available for now.  Starting off as a member of the Elephant 6 music collective out of Athens, GA (famed for the legendary Neutral Milk Hotel who played Babeville this winter), Of Montreal’s musical output has included everything from electronica to folk to punk to jazz to funk.  I imagine there are a few more that I missed.  More than anything else, they’re quirky and a whole lot of fun.  Their outstanding 13th (13th!) album Aureate Gloom is a trip back to 70’s era CBGB where glam and punk reigned supreme, so that should make for a great live show.  The beautiful and great-sounding Babeville is perfect for a band like this.

3. Jim Breuer @ Helium Comedy Club  (Sep 15-16)

Comedian Jim Breuer comes to Helium Comedy Club this week so blow the dust off your old copy of Half Baked and get caught up with an old friend.  The SNL vet has been around for a long time, and his comedy certainly reflects the growth and wisdom that comes along with that.  But at heart he’s still the same fun stoner-dude that you’d love to grab a beer with.  He also was a part of one of my favorite Marc Maron’s best podcast episodes, revealing to him the backround machinations of why Maron was passed over for Weekend Update gig.  Check him out this week, he’s one of the safest bets you’ll ever make to laugh your ass off and have a great time.

2. The Avett Brothers @ Artpark (Sep 19)

Bluegrass and Americana have seen massive renaissances of sorts in the last decade or so, and a portion of that is attributable to The Avett Brothers.  Their 8 studio albums have been mostly fantastic and their live shows are a wildly fun time.  Seth and Scott Avett’s sound has softened a bit over the years since teaming up with Rick Rubin, but their live shows are still a raucous affair.  There are few bands out there who can vacillate so deftly between soulfull ballads and foot-stomping crowd pleasers so expect to be doing a lot of dancing while they rock the stage.  Artpark can be a hell of a party with the right band, so this ought to be a real fun night of revelry.


1.  Murder by Death @  The Waiting Room (Sep 16)

 Murder by Death’s Good Morning, Magpie will always have a special place in my heart.  A few years back I spent a little time under-the-weather when I lived in Alaska, and this album was the soundtrack to that winter.  Singer Adam Turla and cellist Sarah Balliet warmed my cabin while lightly sipped bourbon and gazed out out at the cold, snowy woods surrounding me.  I wore that record out- it actually had the same place where it skipped every single time during the same song.  I just popped it up on my computer and I immediately recognized the spot, half expecting it to happen again.  As you can guess, I highly recommend going to see this band.  They are a tremendous live act, and I have yet to find a person who doesn’t like them when introduced.  I know the name suggests a harsher sound, but they have a beautifully velvety sound that goes down like an expensive glass of whiskey.  I’ll be there this Wednesday at The Waiting Room to see them, and you should be too.


Hot Takes:  BPO Opening Night Gala: Lang-Lang Returns: Kleinhans (Sep 16), Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure @ North Park Theatre (Sep 19)

Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next week!

You can follow me on Twitter and Facebook as well for Buffalo event updates.


Bob Dylan at Artpark

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That’s Bob, the man in black

Bob Dylan delivered a memorable performance in Lewiston last night, kicking things off with “Watching the River Flow,” a great choice for this venue perched above the mighty Niagara. The 71-year-old music icon led his band through this set list, often reworking melodies in interesting ways. Those great lyrics still pop out, even if he’s stretching out the meter or barking out the words at a rushed clip in his unforgettable, raspy voice. He boogied on the piano, wailed on the harmonica, and also coaxed applause from the audience for his guitar solo on “Simple Twist of Fate.” 

One great thing about Dylan is how he gets up there and puts the “play” into playing music. Like snowflakes, no two performances are alike on his Never-ending Tour. Last night’s sold-out crowd—ranging in age from less than one to over 80 years old—loved him for it.


Yes at Artpark

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Yes is a band that needs no introduction. Four decades. Twenty-one studio albums. The bass part of “Roundabout.”  These are the guys who managed to make 20-minute progressive rock epics radio friendly and invented the fine art of the trippy album cover (well, okay, Roger Dean did that, but still). Yes, the lineup’s changed, again—the current iteration consists of Chris Squire, Steve Howe, Alan White, Geoff Downes, and Jon Davison—but don’t let the lack of Jon Anderson dissuade you. Get up, get down, and see these titans of prog rock when they play close by a river, not in but around a lake at Artpark on Tuesday night (July 17). Accompanying the venerated quintet will be another set of the prog pioneers, Procol Harum, an Essex sextet whose 45 years of reputation precede them. Fans of unusual time signatures and the Hammond organ may never witness an opportunity like this again, and all for what it might’ve cost you to see it in 1969. -edward a. benoit

Tues. 17. Yes w/ Special Guests Procol Harum. 6:30pm Artpark. (754-4375/ $5 before 7/15, $10 afterward.

Photos from OAR’s performance at Artpark


August 3rd, Artpark

The gloomy weather and chance of showers didn’t keep many from opting out of the OAR show last night. There was little breathing room between the thousands of fans who made their way to Artpark to watch OAR jam—music so reminiscent of many folks’ college days. And to everyone’s luck, the weather held up throughout the night.  Special props to the trumpet and saxophone players who joined OAR.  The set was even more fantastic than most fans expected! —emilie hagen

Photos by Neil Kryszak

Thrilling Thursday: Wiz Khalifa or Tokyo Police Club?

Wiz Khalifa

Some use E-Z Widers, others use Zig Zag, some forego papers altogether and head straight for Philly Blunts. Whatever you use, you’ll smell them all burning when Wiz Khalifa rolls through Artpark next week as part of his Rolling Papers World Tour. Most commonly celebrated for his chart topping 2010 Pittsburgh rally anthem “Black and Yellow,” Khalifa, a self-righteous Pittsburgh native, is no newcomer to the rap game. Since bursting onto the scene in 2005 with his Prince of the City: Welcome to Pistolvania mixtape, Khalifa, real name Cameron Jibril Thomaz, has become a hip-hop contender, having taken the stage with heavyweights like Method Man, Red Man, and Snoop Dogg. Rolling Papers, the rappers latest release and major label debut, sold nearly 200,000 copies in its first week, ranking in at number 2 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart, and has since gone gold, amassing over 500,000 sales; a noteworthy feat for an artist in the digital age. Khalifa plays all the hits from the album on its namesake tour, along with plenty of old favorites. Rapper Big Sean, basking in the haze of moderate success after his 2011 debut Finally Famous, and token toking rapper Chevy Woods share the mic with Khalifa as they light up Artpark next Thursday (Aug 4). —brett perla

7pm. Artpark, 450 South 4th St., Lewiston (754-4375 / $32.50 reserved seating, $22.50 lawn.

Tokyo Police Club

This Thursday (Aug 4), Thursday at the Square closes out the series with Tokyo Police Club at the Erie Canal Harbor Central Wharf. Hailing from Toronto, Tokyo Police Club have gained fame and stardom through their witty lyrics, bright and energetic sound, and through a healthy presence in social media. Born out of the minds of Greg Alsop (drums), Josh Hook (guitar), David Monks (vocals, bass), and Graham Wright (keys, percussion) in 2005, Tokyo Police Club have since been quickly propelled into the limelight, performing on the Late Show with David Letterman three times, at the Juno Awards (where the band was nominated for “Alternative Album of the Year”) this year alongside Arcade Fire, and touring in 2010 with Passion Pit. Tokyo Police Club played at Soundlab in February of this year while a blizzard stormed through the Queen City and the surrounding areas, but the band is back this summer to bask in the Buffalo sun. “We’re excited to be back,” Greg Alsop said. “I love Buffalo, it’s such a beautiful area.” When asked about closing out the series, he replied: “We’re excited to be doing it, it feels great to be asked” From the beginning of the annual summer concert series at the Square when Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes took the stage back on June 2nd to ending the year with Tokyo Police Club, coming from just across the border to close out the series, Thursday at the Square has amassed quite a variety of musical talent and spectators alike. —michael koh

5pm. Erie Canal Harbor Central Wharf. ( Free.

Stacy Clark @ Artpark

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Pop music with some rhythm and creative instrumentation can be hard to come by, but Grand Island native and pop-star on the rise Stacy Clark pulls it off. It might be the dancer inside of her that helped create the body-moving tunes like “Not Enough,”on her new album Connect the Dots, but it’s the poet inside that arouses the heartfelt and sincere lyrics about relationships and the weight of the world on songs like “Touch & Go.” Now, as she prepares to release her music to the world, she returns to Buffalo from her home in Southern California to open for the legendary folk rock band America at Artpark on Tuesday (June 29).
AV: Who are your biggest influences?
Clark: Ani DiFranco, Stevie Nicks, Jimmy Eat World, the Beatles, Buddha and Jesus.
AV: How long have you been playing the guitar/piano and how did you learn?
Clark: I’ve been playing guitar for 15 years. Piano is recent, but I love composing on it.
AV: What does the title of your album, Connect the Dots, mean to you?
Clark: It’s about making sense of all the opportunities that are presented to you and being grateful for what’s given to you.
AV: Your songs go deeper than most pop artists, for instance, on your song “Misery” you sing about how the weight of the world weighs down on everyone no matter what they look like or who they are. How does it make you feel to reveal so much about yourself to your listeners?
Clark: Vulnerable, but it’s worth it to me if someone can relate to the lyrics and gain something from it for their own life.
AV: A lot of your songs are about love and relationships, whether it be with friends or romantically. Can you talk about one friendship or relationship that has inspired you?
Clark: My relationship with my friends (who I consider the real threads of life) are an enormous part of my life. Those I love also have the greatest power to hurt. Sometimes my songs reflect those instances when someone close to me hurt me – it’s a deep wound that affects me more than say, a fight with a boyfriend. It’s an important part of maturing emotionally, to be hurt in this way, and it’s something that can happen at any age.
AV: How does southern California compare to Buffalo, New York, culturally and musically?
Clark: Completely different. There’s more of everything in California so the amount of music and art is vast. Buffalo’s music scene is small, so it’s close-knit. Not to say either one is better! There’s something unique in that small community—the bonds between artists are so strong. The scene is Buffalo is amazing…and there’s definitely no place like home for me!
AV: How does your experience as a dancer impact your music?
Clark: Rhythm and beats are important to me, as much as lyrics and melody. A song should move people on different levels and the physical reaction to music is as important as the emotional one.
AV: How does it feel to return to your hometown, to open for such a classic American rock band like America, in anticipation of your new album’s release?
Clark: It’s an amazing milestone for me that I only ever dreamed of achieving. Artpark was where I first saw Sarah MacLachlan and knew I wanted to pursue music. I’m overjoyed and completely thrilled!
Stacy Clark plays at Artpark’s Tuesday in the Park on June 29, 6:30pm. Her album Connect the Dots will be available August 10 (Vanguard Records). The show is part of Artpark’s free outdoor summer concert series
cory perla

AMERICA Returns to Artpark

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For most of the northern hemisphere, summer begins on the solstice; sometime on June 21. But for those of us who don’t carry a solar calendar or require a wrist watch, we use the best and secretly Western New York’s traditional way to know when spring changes to summer; we listen for it. We hear summer come in at

Next Tuesday Dewey Bunnell and Gerry Beckley return to usher in Western New York’s summer.

Artpark.  This year our summer begins at 8pm on Tuesday, June 29 when AMERICA takes the stage.

AMERICA first took to the stage 40 years ago. They’ve been through the desert on a “Horse With No Name”—it’s biblical. And although they are no longer teenagers, many of their fans are. I found this out when I was speaking with a crop of this year’s college kids. AMERICA was one of their favorite bands. Nothing unusual there, but the difference was; they were fans of AMERICA’s new music from the album Here and Now. Terrific songs such as “Ride On” and “Indian Summer.”

They are fantastic tunes. I’ve added Here and Now to my collection of Ventura Highway and Tin Man.

Each year I wait for Maria Costello to send me a message letting me know what the Artpark line-up will contain. And unlike Thursdays in the Square where the program has completely tanked, Artpark’s “Tuesdays in the Park” and Wednesdays in the Gorge” are skyrocketing! It’s incredible. This year, following AMERICA, there will be performances by The Guess Who, George Thorogood, The Doobie Brothers and Foreigner, just to mention a few.

And on Wednesday, August 18, David Nolf opens for Sloan from Halifax.  Last year at Artpark, David Nolf opened for AMERICA, for a combination that many called the Best Show of their lives!

And while no column would be long enough to list all of the great shows Maria Costello and company compiled for another great season; it’s only a short ride to Artpark in Lewiston to listen for yourself.

Only With America!

America 012

As Summer began, the rock band America (Horse with No Name, Tin Man and countless other chart topping hits) performed at Artpark in Lewiston.  Summer in Western New York doesn’t begin until America does so; it’s part of some cosmic agreement written some where. As always America’s performance was by far and away as good as it gets. America has a reputation for leaving their audiences awe-struck!  And Artpark, with the assistance of Maria Costello, is the premier venue for out door entertainment!

While there I had a question for Maria; “who would dare to open for them?” Her answer; “(local musician) David Nolf and his band; One and One!” (This post continues; click to read more…)

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