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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of events to watch out for the week, including our editor's pick: Magic Mayhem at Music Is Art on Saturday the 11th.

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

Music Is Art 2010: Magic Mayhem

Saturday, September 11

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages, step right up to the eighth annual Music is Art Festival! For several years, the event took place simultaneously with the Allentown Art Festival, on the second weekend in June. Then, when it became impossible to hold the event on Franklin Street, they moved it out to the Erie County Fair for a year. For the last few years, it has settled into a home on the grounds of the Albright Knox Art Gallery. It’s recent scheduling in September has turned it into a sort of last-hurrah for the summer, as well as a fun way to kick off the school year. It’s still got the star-power courtesy of Goo Goo Doll Robby Takac, who founded MiA as a way to underscore the importance of music in schools—but Music is Art has become something more than just a foundation running an instrument drive. H.E.A.R.T. (Helping Every Student Rally Together), is an offshoot program aimed at promoting adolescent mental health. The Big Easy in Buffalo series has brought big name New Orleans musicians to town for concerts in local nightclubs, concert halls, and schools. They also sponsor a student battle of the bands, live shows at the UB Center for the Arts, and Music in Action—a program aimed at helping students learn about careers in the music industry. This Saturday’s (Sept. 11) festival—subtitled “Magic Mayhem”—promises to be the biggest and most spectacular yet, with magicians performing unprecedented feats of prestidigitation, over 40 bands on multiple stages, visual artists displaying work, dance troupes, DJs, photographers, food vendors, tables where you can pick up souvenirs or learn about other worthy not-for-profits, and an expanded Kids Village, which will offer music, magic, and other activities aimed at pleasing all the little rockers of the future. —buck quigley

10am-10pm. Albright Knox Art Gallery Lawn, across from Delaware Park/Hoyt Lake. (880-3375 /

Thursday, September 9

The Alarm's Mike Peters Solo Acoustic

Sadly, the Alarm show scheduled for tonight (Sept. 9) at Lancaster’s Dunn Tire Raceway Park has been cancelled. Instead, Alarm frontman Mike Peters will give an acoustic performance tonight at Club Diablo! Doors open at 7pm, the Pillagers open the show at 8pm, and Peters will take the stage at 9pm. —ko’

7pm (doors). Club Diablo, 517 Washington St. (842-0666 /

Thursday, September 9th

Chris Knight

A lot of the time country music gets a bad rep for being hokey and silly. Not all country artists are alike. While dead dogs, broken hearts, and bottles of booze make their appearances, many country artists write with a poet’s careful eye, full of imagery that resonates and wordplay that twists. One just has to refer to some of the greats: Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Townes Van Zandt, and Gram Parsons. These men told the stories in song of lives that were lived, however ugly or beautiful they may be. Chris Knight, the good ole boy from Kentucky, continues in the footsteps of those great country singers who have heart. He has one of those masculine, aged voicesthat makes his singing sound that much more authentic. “Enough Rope,” is a heartbreaker of a song about the trials and troubles that life tends to deliver: unexpected pregnancies, shitty jobs, lost dreams, and the bleak refrain “You can’t hang yourself, if you ain’t got enough rope.” Ouch. Knight penned a hit for Montgomery Gentry called “She Couldn’t Change Me” and also co-wrote songs with the likes of Randy Travis and Gary Allan. Chris Knight performs this Thursday (September 9) at Sportmen’s Tavern. The show starts at 8pm and is part of the Sportsmen’s Private Party Series. —peter vullo

8pm. Sportsmen’s Tavern, 326 Amherst St. (874-7734 / $20

Friday, September 10

Mark Stuart & Stacey Earle

It’s back to back Private Parties this week at the Sportsmen’s. Following Chris Knight’s visit the Tavern will host country music’s favorite couple, husband and wife duo Mark Stuart and Stacey Earle (sister of Steve). Married and performing together since 1992, these two have the live performance thing down with near perfect guitar interplay and an arsenal of funny stories. Mark and Stacey play on Friday (Sept. 10). Rick Smith opens the show, with Jim Brucato. —ko’

8pm. Sportsmen’s Tavern, 326 Amherst St. (874-7734 / $15

Saturday, September 11

Manny Fried: The Most Dangerous Man

Manny Fried used to pull a great stunt when he delivered lectures on the labor organizing before, during, and after World War Two that landed him in Dutch with the feds: Beside him as he spoke would be a stack of paper as high as the podium. “This,” Fried would tell the audience, “is just a sample of my FBI file.” The 97-year-old playwright, actor, novelist, teacher, and all-around local legend signs copies of his new memoir, Most Dangerous Man, at the Main Street location of Talking Leaves on Saturday (Sept. 11). He’s a walking, talking lesson in the history of the American Left. Don’t miss him. —geoff kelly

4pm. Talking Leaves Books, 3158 Main St. (837-8554 /

Saturday, September 11

Mark Hummel's Blues Harmonica Blowout, with special guest Magic Dick (J. Geils Band)

West Coast blues impresario Mark Hummel is easily one of the top five harmonica players in the world today (didn’t know they rated harmonica players, didya?), according to Independent Weekly, the West Coast Blues Revue, and other reliable sources. Heading up his band Blues Survivors in Northern California for the past 20 years has given Hummel an opportunity to hone his trademark sound, and to launch his Blues Harmonica Blowout touring series. A list of past participants reads like a who’s who of Blues “harp” history: James Cotton, Charlie Musselwhite, Norton Buffalo, Kim Wilson, Huey Lewis, Carey Bell, Billy Boy Arnold, Rod Piazza, Rick Estrin, Paul deLay, Snooky Pryor, Gary Primich, Sam Myers, and many, many others. Hummel’s stop in Buffalo at the Tralf on Saturday (Sept. 11) brings an equally impressive line up featuring J. Geils Band’s Magic Dick, fresh off a reunion tour with that band. Also on the tour are harp blowers Billy Branch (Chicago) and James Harman (SoCal), and Chicago blues guitarist Steve Freund. The Blowout will offer a meet and greet at 6:30pm with Magic Dick, Hummel, Branch, Harman, and Freund, and a drawing for harmonica players that would like to join the Blowout finale with all the featured guests stars. One lucky winner will get to jam if his or her name is drawn. —k. o’day

7pm (doors). Tralf Music Hall, 622 Main St. (852-2860 / $23/presale; $25/at door at Ticketmaster locations (745-3000 /

Saturday, September 11

Goin' South: The 2010 Irish Feis and Expo

The phrase “goin’ south” doesn’t tend to make most people think of Ireland. But think of goin’ south in Buffalo, and that changes. The 10th Annual Irish Feis at South Buffalo’s Cazenovia Park this Saturday (Sept.11) is a community wide event to boost both Irish and neighborhood pride. Held in conjunction with the South Buffalo Chamber of Commerce’s Shop in Your Neighborhood Expo, the day-long event will showcase the best that South Buffalo has to offer, with over 60 businesses, schools, and organazations presenting, tons of delicious food, live Celtic music, Irish dancers, kids’ activities, and so much more. Music will be provided by Black 47 (NYC), the Town Pants (Vancouver), Needfire (Dallas, TX), and local bands Emish, Southside, Pug Mahones, Cosain, and the Blarney Bunch. There will also be performances by the Clann na Cara Dancers, the Rince na Tiarna Dancers, and the O’Sullivan Dancers, aws well as horse-drawn wagon rides, face painting, raffles, prizes, and giveaways. Visit for full schedule of events. —k. o’day

Noon-fireworks (at dusk). Cazenovia Park, Cazenovia St/Indian Church Rd., South Buffalo. Free.

Thursday, September 16

Sneak Peak - Next Week: Wavves

Wavves are the latest band to make waves in the pop-punk arena. The lo-fi noise-noise pop band from San Diego have just released their third album, King of the Beach and they seem to be following a rather typical path. The band’s rise began over the internet after the release of Wavves, their second album, singer Nathan Williams recently admitted to a substance abuse problem, and all of their songs are about parties and the beach. So what makes them different than any other pop punk band? Well, it all just feels really sincere. The poppy party themes on King of the Beach, released in August on Fat Possum Records, takes on an honest tone when filtered through the 22 year-old Willams’ lonesome worldview. He never really addresses any of his personal issues directly, but the purposely messy and hazy reverb on songs like “Post Acid” reflect even hazier nights spent partying. Like any teenager who grew up in Southern California in the late 1990’s Williams probably spent most of his time listening bands like MxPx, Green Day and Blink 182 and certainly it shines through in his music. But Williams also borrows from more contemporary artists like Washed Out and Neon Indian, mixing lo-fi white wash effects with his fast and bouncing power chords. Wavves will crash into Mohawk Place next Thursday (Sept 16). —cory perla

8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (