Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Newsweekly
Home Blogs Web Features Calendar Listings Artvoice TV Real Estate Classifieds Contact

Cover Story

This Is Buffalo Hip-Hop

by Daniel B. Honigman

For more than seven years, Thursday nights at Broadway Joe’s in the University Heights section of Buffalo have been a mainstay of the local hip-hop scene.

Free Will Astrology

by Rob Brezsny

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): It’s perfectly fine for you to have dreamy eyes in the coming days—wistful, hopeful, liquid eyes that are more focused on the fantasies within than on the sights without. Muse to your heart’s content, Taurus. Wander over to paradise in your imagination. Entertain utopian visions. As much as is practical, give yourself permission to visit LaLa land, where you can explore infinite possibilities, imaginary adventures and “forbidden” topics that up until now you haven’t dared to play with.

Letters to Artvoice

Not long ago, we heard from Congressman Brian Higgins that the tolls on the Niagara Thruway are not only unfair, they are “immoral.” More recently, Eliot Spitzer has promised to eliminate the tolls if elected governor. A closer look, however, makes one question whether the elimination of the tolls would really benefit the community as a whole.


The Broadway Market

by Miakka Natisse Wood

Long after your butter lambs have melted, the folks at Broadway Market will be counting down the days until Easter rolls back around. It doesn’t take an MBA to know that a few great business days in the spring isn’t enough to sustain the Broadway Market the other 360 days of the year. US Representative Louise M. Slaughter has long been a supporter of the Broadway Market, using federal funds and grants in an effort to restore the Market to sustainability. Slaughter planned to direct another $97,000 to the market, but opted out of the transaction when she learned that the Broadway Market board had been in negotiations with a corporation to use nearly half the market as a clothing factory outlet. With negotiations stalled because of that corporation being sold, and Slaughter pulling the $97,000, the Market appears to be stuck between a rock and a hard place. What now?

News of the Weird

by Chuck Shepherd

■ Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology are working on a high-tech device with seemingly a multitude of uses in lessening our crushing overload of banality: a boredom detector. A talker, via a wearable camera and software that measures facial expressions and movements, could know whether he has lost touch with a listener, via signals from eyebrows, lips, nose, etc. The device was designed for the autistic, who are typically oblivious of other people’s reactions, but would be useful to anyone underskilled at being interesting. So far, the software is said to be accurate 64 percent of the time, according to a March report in New Scientist.

The News, Briefly

Why Doesn't the Buffalo News Editorial Page Tell the Truth?

by Bruce Jackson

Background on the Playground

by Geoff Kelly & Louis Ricciuti


"Our Health Is Not Improving"

by Peter Koch

On Earth Day—which falls on April 22 this year—the nation celebrates and works to protect the Earth’s natural bounty. But there are those, like Dr. Rosalie Bertell, GNSH, who work toward that end every hour of every day.



by M. H. Burkett

In need of a doorstop, he bought a heavy dictionary at the flea market. Waiting to check out, he spied a dusty entomologist kit, complete with several glass display cases. He purchased this as well.

Book Review

Buried Child, by Sam Shepard

by Emily D. McClellan

In the preface to the revised edition of his Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Sam Shepard asserts that Buried Child is “now a better play.” Anyone who has read the acclaimed play in its unrevised state can surely attest to that fact. In all of its incarnations, the play is a darkly comic portrait of a family brought to its knees by betrayal, adultery, and murder. The reader is drawn into a surreal farmland home that parallels both the absurdity of the homestead in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and the circus-like familial interactions of Geek Love. From the start, we are introduced to a bible-beating-yet-philandering matriarch, an incapacitated-yet-smart-mouthed patriarch, a traumatized eldest son freshly home from a mysteriously diabolical escapade in New Mexico, and a youngest son with both a superiority complex and a wooden leg. These characters are unveiled as ghosts of their former selves during a visitation by a long lost grandson and his girlfriend. With wit and clever wordplay, Shepard crafts a sharp dissection of heritage, family, and the ways in which his statement “the past is passed” is far from the truth. The revised edition plays up the burlesque humor of the play and adds to the overall characterization of the play’s cast. Shepard’s tale is as timeless as it is disturbingly relevant to anyone who feels confined by the constraints and expectations of family.


Opt Out, Tune In

by Kevin Thurston

Buffalo is in for a treat at the final installment of the Small Press sub-series, a part of Just Buffalo’s Orbital series, as Washington, DC’s Buck Downs and Philadelphia’s CA Conrad come to town. Both poets are remarkable in their commitment to a set of ethics and in their ability to convert their ethics into poems that retain their sense of humor and avoid heavyhandedness. And, indeed, with the state of (poetry in) America, who wants to be lectured to?


by Javier

The fabulous Ali MacGraw (pictured above) is making her Broadway (and stage) debut in Festen. A stage adaptation of the 1998 Danish film, the play had a successful run in London. The Broadway production began previews at the Music Box Theatre on March 23rd and officially opened on April 9th. A few days before, on April 1st, MacGraw celebrated her 68th birthday.


by Anthony Chase

It’s a furious finish to the theater season as numerous productions open this weekend and next. These will be the final shows of the season to be considered for the Artie Awards, Buffalo’s theater awards, which will be held on Monday, May 22, at the Town Ballroom.

Artist of the Week

Beth Elkins

by Geoff Kelly

In the 13 years that Buffalo has been her home, Beth Elkins has danced lead parts with every major dance company in town, most often and most notably with Pick of the Crop and Negia Ballet Artists. She is also a partner with architect Brad Wales in Allen Street’s Gallery 164 and in the newly created Nimbus Dance, whose debut production, Story of a Girl, has played to full houses at the gallery the past two weekends. (See the review on page 18.) Story of a Girl—which features dancers Jennifer Golonka, Melanie Aceto and Kerry Ann Ring; narrator Theresa Baker; and video by Brad Wales and Brian Milbrand—is the first full-length piece Elkins has choreographed.


It's a Small World

by Eric Jackson-Forsberg

For devotees of the meticulous art of collage and assemblage, it’s time to take magnifying glass in hand and head out to see “Small, Smaller & Smallest: Recent Work by Gerald Mead” at Insite Gallery, on view now through April 22nd.


Standing Room Only

by Cynnie Gaasch

Buffalo saw the premiere of Nimbus Dance over the past two weeks with six sold-out performances. Due to popular demand, the production, Story of a Girl, will run two more nights, this Thursday and Friday, April 20 and 21.

Gewgaws and Gimcracks

TruePower 2.0 Power Supply

by David P. Kleinschmidt

Somehow or another, a friend of mine had decided that the power supply on his computer was failing. Maybe he’d heard of someone else having power supply problems and thought it was contagious. Maybe his spider sense was tingling. Either way, convinced as he was that his computer was going to explode any minute, he just couldn’t bring himself to pay to have it serviced. So he bought the biggest, baddest, chromed-out power supply he could find and installed it himself. It was relatively easy, and guess what, it worked.

Puck Stop

Thou Shalt Not Jinx

by Andrew Kulyk & Peter Farrell

Five years. That’s how long it’s been since the Buffalo Sabres last appeared in the Stanley Cup playoffs. And when you travel around Buffalo this weekend, you will immediately notice that even the non-fan, or the casual fan, is caught up in the Fever. That’s “Stanley Cup Fever,” the kind that has us flipping channels to catch as many of the opening round games as possible; that has us wearing tin foil Cup hats and painted faces as we trek to the arena; that had us up until the wee hours watching that game that took four overtimes to complete, so we would not miss a moment of history.

Film Reviews

The Devil and His Due: The Devil's Miner

by George Sax

The twisting, deeply subterranean tunnels of the silver mines of Cerro Rico don’t seem an inappropriate setting for the devil cult practiced by the miners, and not just because the mines are underground. The hellish working conditions in these mines in the mountains of south-central Bolivia make those in the laxly regulated West Virginia mine where more than a score of men perished after an explosion last fall seem salubrious.


Music of the Future

by Joe Doherty

If music were life, American electronica would be a teenager.

See You There

Sander Hicks for Senate

by Geoff Kelly

Author Nausheen Pasha-Zaidi

by Peter Koch

Earth Day, 2006

by K. O'Day

Soul Position

by Daniel B. Honigman

Gov't. Mule

by Daniel B. Honigman

Left of the Dial

The Raconteurs: Broken Boy Soldiers

by Mark Norris

Band of Horses: Everything All the Time

by Donny Kutzbach

Editors: The Back Room

by Jennifer Behrens


Steve Roth & Meredith Brown

Anything else you would like our readers to know about the band? You can catch the track, "Beautiful Addiction," in regular rotation on 107.7 FM the Lake, other tracks on 97 Rock’s Homegrown Show, and the occasional bump on the Tom Bauerle Show on WBEN 930AM (feel free to email or call the stations to request us)…In addition to playing conventional venues, we’re starting to schedule house concerts, which is nice and intimate and a lot of fun (just email us if you’d like more info)…Beautiful Addiction is available at our shows, Borders Books and Music on Walden Ave., Cheektowaga, and at And while we love having our friends and favorite hang-outs close by, we’re making plans to move to Nashville later this year as we try and figure out how to make music a full-time gig.