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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of featured events, including our editor's picks for the week: The Old Neighborhood St. Patrick's Day Parade, at noon on Saturday the 17th.

If you haven't already, be sure to check out our full events calendar on-line for complete event listings, a location guide to find your way about the city, restaurant reviews, and more.

Old Neighborhood St. Patrick's Day Parade

Saturday, March 17

The annual Old Neighborhood St. Patrick’s Day Parade is one of Buffalo’s proudest and most fun traditions, as thousands of people gather to celebrate. While the Buffalo St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Sunday (March 18) is usually considered to be the main event, the Old Valley parade has put together a deep roster of entertainment this year, which should make it the place to be on Saturday (March 17). There will be over 100 marching units at the parade, and the different varieties of marchers will include marching bands, local businesses, community floats, social clubs, bag pipers, classic cars, Irish dancers, family clans, sports groups, fire and police departments, and much more. The Grand Marshall of this year’s parade will be Mary Ellen Kearns Sumbrum, who will lead the parade down its route through the historic Valley and Old First Ward neighborhoods of South Buffalo. The parade will begin at noon at the Valley Community Center, and will travel through the Buffalo River community. Viewing spots for the parade can be found on South Park Avenue (between Hamburg Street and Smith Street), Smith Street (between South Park Avenue and Elk Street), Elk Street (between Smith Street and South Park Avenue), Hamburg Street (between South Park Avenue and O’Connell Avenue), and O’Connell Avenue (between Hamburg Street and Louisiana Street). After the parade is over there will be a traditional Irish “hooley,” featuring music from the Left Overs, and plenty of food and drinks. It will run from 1pm to 6pm the Valley Community Center. This should be a fine choice for anyone looking witness the Irish Pride of South Buffalo at the its fullest, or to just have a good time getting drunk with a fun bunch of people. —john hugar

2pm. Valley Community Center, 93 Leddy Street. Free.

Friday, March 16

Paul Oakenfold

In 1985 DJ Paul Oakenfold’s life changed. He spent a summer on Ibiza, a small island on the east coast of Spain, known for its thriving club scene. According to an interview in Generation Ecstasy: Into the World of Techno and Rave Culture by Simon Reynolds, Oakenfold was exposed to Balearic style clubs that mixed a wide variety of music. Inspired, he brought the style back to South London where he opened a club called the Funhouse. It failed. People couldn’t, or refused to accept such music in a place where they went to socialize, not necessarily to dance. He continued to spend time in Ibiza with his DJ friends for the next couple of years, but in 1987 something changed; ecstasy showed up on the scene. After a summer partying with his friends and the club drug, he brought the idea of a Balearic club back to South London, and this time, with the help of a drug that enhances one’s appreciation of music but also infamously breaks down mental barriers, the club succeeded. Over 20 years later lots has changed cullturally, technologically, countless more DJs have entered the game, and the 48-year-old Oakenfold is now an icon of the culture. Don’t miss this chance to hear a founding father of the club scene when Factory Nightlife presents Paul Oakenfold at Rendezvous this Friday (March 16). —cory perla

10pm. Rendezvous, 107 Delaware Ave (853-3300 / $35.

Friday, March 16

F.M.L. - Mic Excel Record Release Party

F.M.L. #Butthurt. If you know what F.M.L. means or what a hashtag is then you’re probably part of the Internet generation. It’s the generation of do-it-yourself videos, viral marketing, and well, clamoring for a piece of attention in an over-saturated market. The best way to achieve the latter is to be good at what you do, but also to have the ability to shake off the inevitable haters. Local rapper Mic Excel is a pro. Check him out Friday (March 16) at Soundlab. —cory perla

Read Cory's Twitter-interview with F.M.L. on the Exit Music blog >>

10:30pm. Soundlab, 110 Pearl St. (440-5907 / $8

Saturday, March 17

Shamrock Shakedown

St. Patrick’s Day weekend is always an infamous one in Buffalo. If you’re looking to do more than just drink this weekend, then the Shamrock Shakedown might just be your godsend. Featuring dozens of DJs including veteran clubbers John Acquaviva and Anthony Attalla, every local DJ worth his weight in wax, live bands, and contests spread over multiple genre specific rooms, the Shamrock Shakedown should leave a lasting imprint on the east side’s Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center on Saturday (March 17). Headliners John Acquaviva and Anthony Attalla are no new comers to raves like this one. Since the dawn of rave, Acquaviva has taken his techno and tech house beats worldwide, constantly touring and releasing new music on his Definitive Recordings label. Attalla on the other hand, has spent the last two years making a name for himself as one of the top up and coming DJs in Detroit and beyond, charting over 30 Top 100 tracks on In addition local DJs like Medison, 3PO, Arehouse, HXLY, Swagglerock and many, many more will keep the party going all night. If you do end up surviving until last call at 5am, don’t worry, you’ll get home safe with the free taxi service available at the event. For more information go to —cory perla

8pm. Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center, 562 Genesee St. (856-4476 / $15 advanced, $20 day of show.

Saturday, March 17

John K. Samson

The Weakerthan’s front man John K. Samson has made a reputation for writing songs well—songs that combine melodic tunes with deep poetic lyrics. In his notable solo album, Provincial, Samson delivers a rich collection of re-crafted tracks from previous EPs and new material, on which he reminisces of his hometown landscape in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The alternating indie-pop and acoustic ballad rhythm of the album, alongside a series of quirky prose and earnest pictorial verses puts you in the passenger seat of this prairie road trip. “Heart of the Continent,” an admirably emotion heavy track, captures Samson’s own style of relatable, depressing lyrics (“As I stand before an unresponsive automatic door, just another door that won’t open for me anymore”). Likewise, the catchy but light tune “When I Write My Master’s Thesis” hits hard on universal, unspoken emotion and the common struggle of procrastination (“And my hard drive smashed to pieces, nothing left for me to save when I write my master’s thesis.”) Other tracks play off Samson’s witty charm for word play or are simply cheerful, like “Cruise Night.” Abundant with internet and computer lingo, Samson also devotes the track, “,” petitioning to get Reggie Leach into the NHL hall of fame. The overall affluent brevity of Samson’s solo work goes down somber but memorable and brings you to dreamily envision the memories of your past. Samson & the Provincial Band pairs with fellow Canadian singer-songwriter Shotgun Jimmie this Saturday (March 17) at Mohawk Place. —stacie duderwick

8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 / $14 advanced, $16 day of show.

Saturday, March 17

Sugar City Month of Celebration & Soul Night

Sugar City, the arts collaborative that aims to organize alternative community arts and cultural events in the Buffalo area, has resided in Allentown for three and a half years. They offer music, films, poetry readings, a zine library, an art gallery, workshops, workspaces, and more. Last month the residents of 19 Wadsworth Street found out that their home was sold to a new owner who will not be keeping them as tenants. In order to celebrate their final month at this location they will be hosting a variety of events such as a Fun-A-Day exhibit (March 15), a poetry workshop with mIEKAL aND (March 22), a silent film with live score movie night (April 2), Record Swap and Rock-a-Pancake-athon (April 7), music by Ghost Mice (March 28), and the Give for Greatness Students for the Arts mentorship meetings. The events will culminate with music by Calvin Johnson with the Hivedwellers, Curios Mystery, Nicky, and the Mallwalkers (April 13). Sugar City is also bringing back Soul Night this Saturday (March 17) at 10pm at the Elmwood Lounge. Get your dance on to some old school soul and funk and support Buffalo’s art scene. DJs The Good Rev. Johnny Drama, Handsome Dan, Mark457, and Gittes will provide music to move to. If you like listening to soul classics (and who doesn’t?) shimmy over to the Elmwood Lounge to shake your groove thing all night long. Your donation of $5 will help support Sugar City. Stay updated on their final month of celebration at 19 Wadsworth and news on their next address at —jill greenberg

10pm. Elmwood Restaurant Lounge & Bar, 522 Elmwood Ave. ( $5. 21+.

Tuesday, March 20

I Am the Avalanche

Whatever happened to the Brooklyn Dodgers? What ever happened to the New York Gentleman? Like most power-punk bands questioning life’s finest mysteries, these are the questions Brooklyn five-piece I Am The Avalanche are still asking. In their latest music video of popular 2008 touring song, “Brooklyn Dodgers,” singer Vinnie Caruana, searches for these answers as he explores the streets of Brooklyn, starting on the typical BK residential rooftop and ending in the staple BK, garage door entrance dive bar. While he may not find the direct answer, he ends up in a seemingly happy place reuniting with his four band mates at the bar. The five singers who’ve stemmed from many other bands (singer Vinnie Caruana—the Movielife, guitarists Michael Ireland and Brandon Swanson—Further Seems Forever, bassist Kellen Robson—Scraps and Heart Attacks), seem to be in a happy state as a band, finally completing the album they’ve been working on in New Jersey with Surrender Records “Avalanche United,” in October. Now that it’s released with tons of positive feedback from their fans, they’re anxious to set off on their tour this week, headlining in almost every US city, playing a few festivals in Europe, and taking it home at a few Warped Tours stops this summer. When they come to Mohawk Place on Tuesday (March 20), they want to express that same Brooklyn urgency and aggression as seen in “Brooklyn Dodgers,” and said that Buffalo fans better be ready to mosh. —emilie hagen

6pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (465-2368 / $10 advanced, $12 day of show.

Wednesday, March 21

Babel: Zadie Smith

This Wednesday (March 21) the Just Buffalo Literary Center will present novelist Zadie Smith as part of their Babel lecture series. Smith’s career took off at a young age. In 2000, at the age of 24 she released her first novel, White Teeth, a multicultural portrait of London, which spurred comparisons to Salman Rushdie and earned her significant critical acclaim. The book satirizes middle and working class British culture while contrasting it with non-British culture and the plight of immigrants and their children. White Teeth became an international best seller after publication and in 2003 the UK literary magazine Granta named her one of the twenty best British novelists alive today. Following the success of White Teeth, Smith became a writer in residence at the Institute of Contemporary Art in London, during which time she edited an anthology of erotic short stories, Piece of Flesh, released in 2001. She made the turn back to writing novels in 2002 when she published The Autograph Man, which shifted her focus back to multiculturalism, and followed that with her 2005 novel On Beauty. She has also tackled the subjects of rap music (both of her brothers are rap artists) and the war in Iraq in essays. “An essay is an act of imagination. It still takes quite as much art as fiction,” she once wrote in The Guardian. Take a peak at the imagination of Zadie Smith next week at Kleinhans Music Hall. —cory perla

8pm. Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle (, $35, $25 with Buffalo Library Card, students $10.