Sunday, November 26, 2017

Cassandra Kubinski "Holiday Magic"

"Cassandra Kubinski is very similar to the singer/songwriters of the late 70's...proves that the genre (singer/songwriter) can still be transcendent."  - Billy Joel
Cassandra’s last EP and 5th studio project ONWARD hit the Billboard Heatseekers Top 100 upon release in late 2016.  Her last song release, Autism anthem “Not So Different” was a collaboration with the Goo Goo Dolls and Mary Ramsey of 10,000 Maniacs, who recorded the song with Cassandra and released it via a sold out concert at Buffalo State University.   You’ve heard her music on Lifetime’s “Dance Moms” (9 song placements), ABC, NBC, Bravo, MTV and more, and you’ve heard her voice on commercials for Snickers, Plenti, Homegoods, Kohls, Maybelline, and more. She's performed internationally; opened for The Goo Goo Dolls, 10,000 Maniacs, Anna Nalick, Nelson, and Dickie Betts; and performs at colleges like UCONN, URI, and Albright. She also serves on the Board of Women In Music, The Institute of Audio Research Advisory Committee, and taught songwriting at NYU's summer intensive.

About Holiday Magic
Following up last year's Billboard-charting EP Onward, Holiday Magic is a 6-song EP with 3 originals and 3 holiday classics, including "Sleigh Ride" as a duet with award winning singer/songwriter Matt Cusson. Grammy-nominated producer Chris Sclafani (Ed Sheeran, Rixton, Selena Gomez, Gwen Stefani) produced the project. Holiday Magic is currently available to pre-order at, where pledgers are receiving not only the music, but unique holiday gifts like crocheted hats, hot chocolate dates with Cassandra, and release concert tickets. A portion of all pledges and pre-orders is donated to hurricane relief efforts to assist those affected.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Fell

New Rock Super-Group's First Tour

The Fell

comprised of:
* Billy Sheehan (bassist known for his work with David Lee Roth, Stevie Vai, Mr. Big, Winery Dogs, Talas, etc.) 
* Mike Krompass (former guitarist of Smash Mouth)
* Toby Rand (singer of Supernova) 
* Randy Cooke (drummer of Smash Mouth / also known for his work with Dave Stewart, Ringo Starr, and Ian Gillian)

The Fell – is an exciting new band consisting of rockers Toby Rand (RAND, Juke Kartel and Rock Star: Supernova) on vocals, Guitar player Mike Krompass (multi-platinum music producer and session guitar player), Randy Cooke (notorious session drummer who has recorded/played with greats such as Dave Stewart, Ringo Starr and Ian Gillian) and last, but not least Billy Sheehan (Mr. Big, Winery Dogs) on bass, who needs no introduction. 

This is not your typical “classic rock band”. It's a new fresh direction from their other projects, but uses their influences to create a more modern sound, with heavy guitars, powerful riffs, crushing grooves and huge vocals that we have no doubt will leave listeners begging for more!

"The Fell is a collaboration of musicians who hail from rock'n'roll upbringings. We wrote this record with no filter, just the pure experience of playing music around the world. The four us met through rock'n'roll, and that is the language we are projecting in this project. Lyrically, we hope to inspire those in doubt and join those who reap. It’s a new world… a new fight". - The Fell

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Forever Green Music - Buffalo, NY

4/29/17 Forever Green Repercussions CD art.
Thanks you to Loft Studios and Jim Sommer for putting it all together.

6/11/16: Aside from reviewing local music and writing graphic novel reviews I also record original music with my friend, Danny Manzella as Forever Green. We just released a new song called 8 1/2 foot Ganja Bush which I am really proud of. Originally a duo, Dan and I like to have our good friends come down to contribute parts to our original songs. It's interesting to hear them play along and it makes the entire recording experience that much more fun as they each add their unique talents to our music. I would like to recognize everyone's contributions to the song as well as Dan's unique vocals and Mike's outstanding drumming. Great Job and Thank You!
8 1/2 foot Ganja Bush began a simple basic track so we agreed that there was plenty of room for soloing and improvisation from a few good friends.
Here's the breakdown of guest stars and what they added to the final mix.
My old friend, Jack Branka, agreed to play electric guitar as I played acoustic guitar on the original session. Jack played guitar in my first band so I thought it would a great idea to have him come down and play. He played awesome and his rhythm/lead guitar work is heard prominently in the mix. As I listened to the first few takes of the song I thought it would be great to have a female vocal singing along. Jenelle Duguay agreed to sing and her outstanding vocals add alot! to the overall sound of the song. Brian Pond added some really cool sounds with his wah-wah lead guitar. Last but not least, Tommy Leach Jr. contributed a sweet sounding lead bass solo and Justin Leach added a fourth lead guitar. Their playing comes into the song later around the 6 minute mark or so. Mike Boncaldo mixed and mastered the song which will be on a new Forever Green CD sometime soon. We hope you enjoy listening to the song as much as we enjoyed playing on it.
If you want to hear the 8 1/2 foot Ganja Bush song here is a direct link to it through our Reverbnation music page     
Facebook music page link
Thanks for listening and any comments are welcome.

10 Years In The Baking CD art.

Forever Green
"10 Years In The Baking"
CD Review
This acoustic Americana duo are Danny Manzella - All Lyrics, Lead Vocals, Harmonica, and Joe Tell - Guitars and Bass, with a host of guest players who helped bring this cool menagerie together. Danny also plays with 55 Mainand Eminence Front. Other special guest musicians on this disc are: Tony Chimera on Percussion; Vince Mastrantonio (The Vincent James Explosion, Carina & The Six String Preacher) - Producer; Brian Pond - Lead Guitar; Tommy Leach Jr. - Bass; Justin Leach - Lead Guitar (both from the River Rocks band), and Mike Boncaldo (Chunkpipe) - Drums. These various musicians make appearances and lend their talents to this 16-song debut CD, with some remixed material from their first EP, with many interesting additions.
Getting it all going is "Senorita", going for an old-west type sound, like an outlaw and a Mex that's not enough, Tommy Leach Jr. is laying down solid bass. Drums are supplied by Mike Boncaldo. It's a story of a man in love with someone, whose father doesn't approve. The first verse says it all, "I know a girl Mariana, her presence set me afire, her flame was like the night, full of lust and desire. She walked from the canteena, from there I was under her spell, to me she seemed like an angel, could it been the wishing well. One night her Papa saw me creeping out the door. He screamed, I'll kill you seƱor, you won't see my daughter no more. She looked out from the window. She screamed: 'No Papa, No.' He came a-runnin' at me, now Papa run no more." The chorus here is sung like a serenade! "Empty Room Jump", actually a darker tune than one might realize, written about a man whose girl ain't comin' back. Tommy's brother Justin Leach is an incredible lead guitarist, and it's quite evident in his solo. Tony Chimera has his infectious percussion going. We love the guitar, which brings a fresh sound.
Just a simple ballad with a certain feel, "A Girl's Name", and one of their very first recordings as a band, is an acoustic-laden track. The singing and lyrics are emotional, "Sometimes I can't stop a tear from falling up in eye, cause I can't help it baby, I feel for you. I can't help the poor, not every single poor man I know, but I can try to do my part, each day, by and by."
"She Left" features Brian Pond laying down a superb groove, with Dan hopping in and improving the tune with some harp. Tony is chugging along with his style of bongos and various other percussion instruments. Love the mellow vibe and simplicity. Danny sings with passion and right from the soul. Strumming rock, upbeat acoustic and furious singing is how "Saw A Rose", kicks off and continues. It's definitely one of our favorites. It tells a tale of disillusionment over a relationship gone south. "Saw a rose, was not red, saw a rose, was not red. The place we sleep at night, is just our bed. See at night it's just our house, ain't no love nest baby, it's just our house, just a husband, just a spouse. Blue I feel is all around, when you shout and scream and try to run me out I think we know, Lord we just don't save. Go on and with it babe, there after day. Yeaaa!"
Clean with pleasant sounding acoustic guitar begins "I'd Find My Way". It's mixed in a slightly different vocal track. It conveys a feeling of sitting around and jamming, and having a great time. "When You're Near Me" is a slower, more soothing tune, with its harmonica, bongos, and fine bass lines by Tommy Leach Jr. Vocals here are lower toned, yet still powerful. We truly enjoyed the music, singing, and all the other elements cleverly placed, making it another one of our favorites. The chorus "Cause it's you and me babe, I get the feeling it will always be. Yea, it's you and me babe, when you're near me I feel free", are lyrics that bring a warm, loving feeling, and such a positive vibe. Enjoying the harmonica and pleasant chords on "To See You Again" (one of their older songs) was performed live, but was never recorded or released until now.
A well-written and performed guitar intro pushes us into "Waves". Written about many different kinds of waves, it's an older song, which was a task to sing live for Danny. Powerful guitar strumming and more fantastic vocals again here. It's the duo at its finest! It's a slightly different version than the live one on their debut, with no percussion.
A rockabilly and country blending makes for a cool mix for the theme behind "Greener Pastures". Again, it's another of their older classics from the early days. In between the verses, a mean harmonica plays out.
"Horse Behind The Plow Blues", is a simple blues tune the band keeps coming back to. Playing alongside them on Lead Guitar is Brian, another appearance by Mike on Drums and we can't keep Tony away from adding his talent!
"Final Wish Before Goodbye" is a song written about an indecisive man trying to determine where his relationship stands. Slowed up, with ringing guitar and vocals, and the harmonica was brought out for the occasion.
In "Fall Down Blues", Danny's singing his lungs out with lines like, "If you look at me and told me you wish I was dead, I'd still love you baby, I'm like that in the head"; and then, "a trip up the country thought would do us good. Instead treats me like a dummy made out of wood". He showcases his soulful and bluesy voice, and sings with heart. Acoustic guitar, uptempo rhythm and incredible vocals really make this a fun song to listen to. If you love Folk/Americana rock then this is your jam! We enjoyed the lyrics, speaking of going out to country, just to get away and clear the mind. It was their first song recorded as a band, and used to kick off a few of their shows too; it's the one that started it all.
One of Joe Tell's all-time faves is "Old Dead Flea Blues", describing an acid-drenched trip through the Everglades. With aggressive guitar that has attitude, an unexpected change to a bluesy-based bridge keeps the ears intrigued.
Talk about an old school vibe, "Exactly What You Did" does exactly that, sounding as if it's being played on an antique turntable, with all it's perfect imperfections. The mood that comes to mind is of being in the swamps and hanging on the porch, and is the finest of the blues! Standard beat, harmonica and gritty vocals are featured here.
Concluding this awesome release is an instrumental written by Joe, dedicated to his wife, "Melody For Maria." The track was produced by Vincent Mastrantonio (Vincent James Explosion, Carina & The Six String Preacher), Joe Tell is featured on guitar.
Thanks to Joe for providing this CD for review and giving us the opportunity to share great new music, with powerful lyrics and vocals! Please visit their Reverbnation site or for information on the band, their music, and upcoming events.
Track Listing
"Empty Room Jump"
"A Girl's Name"
"She Left"
"Saw A Rose"
"I'd Find My Way"
"When You're Near Me"
"To See You Again"
"Greener Pastures"
"Horse Behind The Plow Blues"
"Final Wish Before Goodbye"
"Fall Down Blues"
"Old Dead Flea Blues"
"Exactly What You Did"
"Melody For Maria"

Update 3/26/16:  Forever Green - self titled - EP review
Forever Green is a musical collaboration between musicians Dan Manzella and Joe Tell and the title of their new five song EP. Treading territory somewhere between Father John Misty and Hot Tuna the album is a stripped down affair with most tracks feature just guitar, bass and vocals with the occasional harmonica or percussion. "Fall Down Blues" and "When You're Near Me" are straight up acoustic blues numbers while "I'd Find My Way" is a slow ballad and "Joey's Song" an instrumental is almost in the realm of psychedelic mysticism with its experimental sounds. Rounding out the album is "Waves" a track that was recorded live at the Tudor Lounge. For more information about Forever Green visit them on the web at
Review By Bob Silvestri

Thank You Bob!

Update 3/3/16 Forever Green to be continued!
What a great time tonight with our special guests Joe Tell and Danny Manzella. A big thanks to Linda Hastreiter for giving us the scoop on our upcoming benefit Variety Show on March 11th at and for The Iron Island Museum. Download the show and take a listen. We guarantee you will giggle.

Forever Green "Forever Green" CD Review
This two piece Folk, Acoustic based band out of the WNY area is made up of Danny Manzella (55 Main and The Lost Riders Band) - Lead Vocals, Harmonica, and Joe tell - Acoustic & Electric Guitar. Guiseppe Tell is listed as playing Bass. The CD features guest musicians, Vincent Mastrantonio ( The Vincent James Explosion, Carina & The Six String Preacher ) - Lead Guitar / Keyboards on Joey's song, Tommy Leach Jr. - Bass on When You're Near Me, and Tony Chimera ( 55 Main ) - Bongos, percussion on When You're Near Me.
Really enjoyed the first track, "Fall Down Blues". Danny's singing his lungs out with lines like "If you look at me and told me you wish I was dead, I'd still love you baby, I'm like that in the head" and especially on "A trip up the country thought would do us good. Instead treats me like a dummy made out of wood". A very soulful and bluesy voice and sings with heart. The acoustic guitar, up tempo rhythm and incredible vocals really make this a fun song to listen too. If you love folk / Americana rock this is for you then. I enjoyed the lyrics, telling the story of going out to country, just to get away and clear the mind.
"When You're Near Me" is a slower and soothing tune, with it's harmonica, bongos, and fine bass lines by Tommy Leach Jr. The vocals are lower toned, yet still powerful. I truly enjoyed the music, singing, and all the other elements added, making it one off my favorites. The chorus "Cause it's you and me babe, I get the feeling it will always be. Yea, it's you and me babe, when you're near me I feel free" are lyrics that bring a warm and loving feeling. Such a positive vibe. Clean and a pleasant sounding acoustic guitar begin
"I'd Find My Way". Mixed in slightly different vocal track. This track gives me the feeling of sitting around and jamming, just enjoying life.
"Joey's Song" is an instrumental dedicated to Joe's son Joseph. A precisely played guitar, the sound is perfectly clear, you can hear every note ring out, along with a low siren sound in the background is the first part that segues into a strumming guitar and thumping bass. To close it out, they have a special guest Vince Mastrantonio play an incredible guitar solo. Some sweeping and bending of notes on the neck and frets, shows why he is one of the best around.
"Waves" is a live song that gives you a taste of what this band is about. Acoustic, vocals, and a bongo all make a cool song. The energy is positive and gives a soothing feeling. This CD is just a sample from the band. They are working and finishing up their new disc.
Thanks to Joe for sending in the CD. Really loved listening to it! For more on the band, music, please visit Reverbnation or their cdbaby page.
Tracklist: "Fall Down Blues' ( 2007) "When You're Near Me" "I 'd Find My Way ( Vocal Remix ) "Joey's Song" ( Dedicated to Joseph Jacob Militello ) "Waves" - live Tudor Lounge 03/04/12

Update 1/28/16 Forever Green on The Patsy Silver and Dottie Kenney Variety Show
What a wonderful conversation with the talented Joe Tell and Maria today. A huge thanks to Ed Honek, Editor of Nightlife Magazine, for giving us the scoop on the Nightlife Music Awards. So clickity click the link, download it and enjoy!

12/23/15: Forever Green has released a 5 song EP. This release includes a couple of alternate mixes that can only be heard on this CD. The first song, Fall Down Blues, was the first song Forever Green recorded and Joey's Song is the last song Joe Tell recorded. The second song, When You're Near Me, is a alternate version that will not be included on the full length release. I'd Find My Way is another alternate mix that uses all 3 versions of Dan's vocal tracks to create a very unique vocal sound. A second guitar can be faintly heard, this is a unplugged electric guitar which came through the vocal mic during one of Dan's vocal performances. Joey's Song was recorded by Vincent James. Vince is a master musician and he owns Music City Buffalo, one of, if not the best, music stores in Buffalo, NY. I must add that I was slightly intimidated recording with Vince because he is so talented, luckily I got over it and made it through. The guitar tuning on this track was created especially for this song and all the ethereal enhancements were added by Vince. Waves is a live track that Dan wanted to include on the EP. Dan's vocal talent really talent shines through on Waves. Tony Chimera played the bongos on Waves. EP Artwork was created by Cheryl and Dan Manzella and Joe Tell. This EP was meant to be a teaser in advance of a full length CD which will be released in 2016.

Update 3/14/15: Forever Green is proud to have been chosen as a finalist in the Artvoice BOOM (Battle Of Original Music)! We are glad to be recognized for our music and very happy to see our picture in the Artvoice newspaper. The best thing about it is our music is being heard by a larger audience.

Danny Manzella and I are writing music together again as Forever Green with the help of producer Mike Boncaldo of Ansley Court and Chunkpipe? fame.
Forever Green has also enlisted the top shelf help of Tony Chimera on bongos from 55 Main and Tommy Leach Jr. on 5 string bass from River Rocks.
Forever Green has released 2 live original tracks, "Waves" and "Old Dead Flea Blues" from the famed Tudor Lounge in Buffalo, NY with special guest Tony Chimera on bongos.
Big thanks goes out to Bruce Markwardt for recording us. Thanks Dad!
3 new originals have also been written, recorded and released, "When You're Near Me", "I'd Find My Way" and the 6 minute opus "Seniorita". Our love for the blues produced "Exactly What You Did" kept lo-fi on purpose. Dan and I sincerely hope you enjoy listening to our music!

8/24/2011 Update: Forever Green is Now on Reverbnation!
Check out the Youtube video Forever Green (2) to hear Forever Green live...
Thank You for posting the videos Sue & Cheryl!
Forever Green is an acoustic duo Dan & I put together to express our love for music.
logo by Dan the Man.

Here's a classic FG handbill created by Joey Manzella and recently given to me by Dan. Thanks Dan!

This post is dedicated to Debbie Owens.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Interview with singer, Dan Manzella

This is my first attempt at a semi-serious interview using my new digital recorder.
Recording the interview is just the first step, after listening to the interview and deciding on whether or not the interview is OK to use I must type out the words while listening to the playback. This is a rather long and tedious process so I will continue listening and typing until the entire interview is complete.
Joe Tell (JT) attempts to interview local music singer and his Forever Green songwriting partner Dan Manzella (DM) with a special, rare guest appearance by Cheryl Manzella (CM) as "the ghost" .
Special thanks to Dan and Cheryl.

JT: Howdy folks, this is Joe. I am a local underground Buffalo music blogger and I'm here with Dan Manzella...
DM: (Sings) Hello, Hello, Hello...
JT: A fine local singer. Well Hello to you Dan, How are you today?
DM: I'm OK, How are you?
JT: Good. OK the reason why I'm interviewing Dan is because he's got a high profile with his Eminence Front band and he's got other stuff going on with 55 Main.

DM: I wouldn't call it a profile.
JT: Well that's what it says on your Facebook profile so I just copied it off there.
DM: Does it?
JT: Ya. I stalk you every other day don't you know? but anyway ya...
DM: Stalking is corny.
JT: Dan sings with Eminence Front...
DM: Get it corny?
JT: ...with Randy Barnard and Dave Nuemann...
DM: Did you say barnyard?
JT: ...barnyard
DM: No it's Barnard
JT: Barnard in the barnyard
DM: A ha ha ha...
JT: ...Bill Mason
DM: ( in Porky Pig voice) a ba de a be da a Bill
JT: We're just here hanging out trying to do a tryout for a interview here with my new digital recorder, we're trying to catch ghosts in Dan's basement now...
DM: Ya, there could be a couple down here who knows...
JT: So how would you...
DM: Ha ha ha ha ha!
JT: Dan tell us what's going on with all your projects after you stop laughing...
DM: I'm sorry, OK, well most recently we released a CD that's gone over pretty good on reverbnation, big thanks to Joe Militello who's doing this blog site right now...blogsite, I don't now if that's appropriate or not but the CD is called Repercussions it's a recent Forever Green, it's like the third in a series of three, Forever Green the trilogy...

JT: I'm just here as Joe Tell I'm not here to represent that project...
DM: OK so he's not Joe Militello at the moment, he's Joe Tell...ha ha
JT: Tell us about your other things Dan...
CM: I'm here as the ghost...
DM: Oh this is the ghost right here, the ghost of Mrs. Mwyer, it's Cheryl my wife, my lovely wife so...
CM: I wanna be the ghost.
DM: Oh maybe later...ha ha ha...
JT: Cheryl local photographer...
DM: Cheryl yes, local photog extraordinaire...
JT: What's your Facebook? facebook...cheryl joetell... cheryl photos dot com or something?...
CM: I have no idea what your talking about...ha ha ha
JT: page? facebook page?
CM: I actually don't have a photo page yet I'll work on that. You can promote it on your blog page when I do have a photography page set up. I'll work on that soon, thank you.
DM: Manzelly? what the?...
JT: cherylferrisphotos...
DM: cherylmanzellaphotos...I don't know what's wrong with Joe Tell we're also doing Eminence Front which is a Who, Bad Company tribute band with Bill Mason, Dave Nuemann, Randy Barnard. We're also doing 55 Main which is a ongoing thing that's been going on for 5 years now. A party rock band that is done pretty well for itself over the course of 5 years and people like us for whatever reason and I'm grateful to God for that blessing every time. That's 55 Main, Danny Gore on the drums, Tony Chimera on percussion, Dave Nuemann on bass, Randy Barnard on lead guitar and Danny Manzella, me on vocals.

JT: Dan it's weird because you've been together for 5 years and the name of the band is 55 is that kinda weird?
DM: You know what else is weird about that? That number comes up all the time, like registers, clocks
CM: At least twice a day on the clock...
JT: What would say are your 3 main singing influences?...
DM: Main ha ha ha...I have 55 main influences oh ha ha ha...
JT: When you go out in front of the people and sing, the 3 singers that influenced your style of singing and phrasing and lyrics the most...
DM: There's way too many to pick just three but I will pick three. Ronnie Van Zant, Paul Rodgers and Greg Allman. Those three guys the way they sing is what is I always dreamed about singing like as a kid. You know how a guitarist would maybe emulate Peter Frampton as a kid in the 70's growing up, wanna play guitar just like Frampton. Obviously you're not gonna be just like Frampton, you're gonna be your own Frampton, ya know? Capiche? You know what I mean? That would the thing, you'd be your own Frampton.
JT: When you're coming up trying to learn how to sing...
DM: Right, I'm not Ronnie Van Zant, I'm not Paul Rodgers. Remember that one drunken dude "You're not Paul Rodgers!" Me and Joe were doing a Forever Green show once way back when in Brant. This little burg of nothing south of Buffalo...
JT: It was a benefit show...
DM: It was a benefit, it was great. It was actually a really great time but, there was this one drunk dude whose old lady, I think, was liking us a little bit too much. Dancing around us and stuff. She was enjoying us so when we introduced "Wishing Well"...which is ironic because we do that now in Eminence Front with the full band but it was just me and Joe doing everything just acoustic guitar and singing and some percussion shaking. We introduced "Wishing Well" and we introduced the song talking about Paul Rodgers and Free before Bad Company this and that and this chick's husband whose was hammered and drinking all day yells out "You're no Bad Company!" ya know and as quickly as I could retort I said "We know we're not sir, thank you" ha ha ha...and he didn't know what to say to that so I still remember that, that's funny.
JT: That was the beginning of an interesting...
CM: Well, if you tell it a little different, I'm sorry for interrupting here but, the funny part is it started off as the guy yelling out stuff and heckling and then...
DM: No, no, nobody was heckling us...
CM: Well he was in that way by yelling out "You're no Bad Company" but then after that his girlfriend, wife whatever went up and was dancing all over while you're singing so was that an insult to him?...
DM: She was dancing like that before that too that's probably why he hollered that.
JT: Ya that was back in the day when we were playing for free before we actually started doing recordings. Before Dan was in full bands, that was fun. So we got the three best singers that influenced you what's your three favorite songs of all time?
DM: Believe it or not one of my all time, I think one the most beautifully written songs is "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" by Hank Williams. Always has been since the first time I dropped the needle on the vinyl, if you ever listen to that song it's just beautiful.
JT: Ya he was awesome...
DM: Yes definitely, songwriter extraordinaire. I know I've already used the term extraordinaire describing Cheryl's photography but...two other songs as my favorite all time songs, boy that's just maybe too tough, how do you narrow it down? the song list goes on forever...
JT: There has to be at least three that come to mind right away...
DM: Well I love "Nantucket Sleighride", remember that song by Mountain?...
JT: I think you played it for me quite a few times.
DM: "Songs of Yesterday" by Free, a lot of Free songs. I love just about any southern rock song.
JT: When we do stuff as Forever Green how do you and how did you learn to improvise so well? How do the lyrics come to you from out of nowhere? Is that creative side influenced by what you're doing or who you're hanging out with at the time?
DM: Ya, that's a good way of describing it. My creativity is also inspired by what I'm thinking about at the time. A week's worth of thinking about something, it's been in your head and all of the sudden you get a chance to liberate those thoughts into a song. That has been the case when me and you get together, just like you when you're noodling around the guitar and you come up with something. Maybe we'll be down here with you on the guitar and me on the harp and I'm guilty of not working on the harp, like I should, at all. But as far as songs go you know alot of that comes from reading alot and creative writing as a kid. Listening to alot of music, obviously, and digging all kinds of media.
JM: The songs that you mentioned are really good so you get alot of ideas from your influences. 

to be continued...

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Buffalo Comicon 2017

Here's a link to Joe Tell's Comic Book Dude blog. The Comic Book Dude conducts an exclusive interview with Queen City Bookstore's own Emil Novak, Sr., proprietor of the 18th Annual Buffalo Comicon. Emil fills everybody in on all the details and we talk about all things Buffalo Comicon! Click the and enjoy!...

Thursday, July 13, 2017

55 Main - J.K. Media

J.K. Media was present at Danielle's Grad Party and they were nice enough to take pictures of 55 Main and send me some pictures of the band.

Dan the Man on vocals.

Joe, Tony and Dan rockin' out.

Randy on lead guitar.

Brian on rhythm guitar and vocals.

Joe Tell fillin' in on bass.

Tony on bongos.

Dan on drums.

J.K. Media's website link...
J.K. Media's FB page...
Thank You 55 Main & J.K. Media!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Live Music

Recently I came across a flyer for a benefit show that listed "live music" as part of the event.
First off the generic listing of "live music" made me wonder. What kind of "live music" was the benefit going to provide? A DJ? a live band? maybe karaoke?...
The generic connotation of "live music" is a really a turn off and not a good selling point if you want to have any kind of successful event. It is disrespectful toward the live music provider and shows that the promoters do not care enough about the "live music" to even announce who it is.
A good selling point would be to announce the band or DJ they will be bringing in to sell tickets. The fans of the band or DJ will know where they will be playing so they can buy a ticket to support them. What really got me is that the flyer listed "live music" in lower case and "Live Auctions" in upper and lower case!
My suggestion is that if you do not care enough about "live music" do not hire "live music" for your event. I would not be happy if I was providing music for an event that did not even bother to list the band name for their promotions. Ultimately the uncaring attitude that local bar patrons and owners display toward "live music" is bad for live bands. It's bad for the bands and all the venues they play in.
Please show the proper respect for local music and display all of the band names on all of your further "live music" event promotions.        

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Nightmare Police - Long Island, NY

(LONG ISLAND, NY - May 10th, 2017)
New York pop-punk trio The Nightmare Police have released their newest single 'Where Were You?'.
Vocalist Ian Washington spoke exclusively to New Noise Magazine about the new record.
Their new track is taken from their upcoming sophomore EP Losing The Light, set to be released on June 9th.
The album is available for pre-order on Bandcamp.
Hailing from Long Island, New York, The Nightmare Police are on a mission to bring light from the darkness. Hitting on relatable topics such as youth, drinking, loss and addiction, their infectious tunes leave a feeling of nostalgia and self-reflection. Citing influences from Alkaline Trio to Fall Out Boy, the band creates anthemic pop punk songs filled with catchy melodies and driving guitar riffs.
On the heels of their debut EP "if only i could...", released in October 2015, The Nightmare Police are primed for their sophomore release. Losing The Light, produced by Frank Laudicina and Brett Romnes, is out June 9th.

The Nightmare Police set off on tour next month, with the 8-date run kicking off in Connecticut on May 6th.
Full dates:
5/26 - Mystic, CT @ The German Club
5/27 - Boston, MA @ TBA
5/28 - Mechanicville, NY @ Our Place

5/29 - Buffalo, NY @ Sugar City 

5/31 - Philadelphia, PA @ The Fire
6/1 - Baltimore, MD @ The Sidebar
6/2 - Boonton, NJ @ BoonTunes
6/3 - Smithtown, NY @ Katie's of Smithtow

Friday, May 12, 2017

Head North - Buffalo, NY

Buffalo, NY-based, cosmic rock band Head North announce their debut LP, The Last Living Man Alive Ever In The History Of The World, due out on June 2nd. The album was produced and mixed by Brett Romnes (I Am the Avalanche) and mastered by Jesse Cannon (Animal Collective, Man Overboard) at Barbershop Studios in Lake Hopatcong, NJ.

Having already received attention from Noisey, New Noise Magazine and Dying Scene from their 2014 EP, Bloodlines, Head North is currently gearing up for the release of their full body of work and accompanying tour.

The concept album revolves around an alternate world where both God and love are forbidden. The personal narratives are told through the perspectives of principal songwriters Brent Martone, Ben Lieber and Alex Matos, whose driving force can be heard through their transition from harder, louder rock driven tracks to the more atmospheric and dreamy second half of the record. Martone's gritty lyricism and the accompanying instrumentals reflect the groups evolution, as they reflect on their previous release and more forward with an air of wisdom and continued understanding of the band's place in the world, and the alternate universe they've created.

Last summer, the band released album track and video, "God (Bring It Back)," which has received attention from fans and press alike, and has built momentum towards the full length release out this summer. Infections Magazine stated on the video, "Displaying a new, melodic sound, layered with their signature introspective lyrics, the band prove that they’re coming back stronger than ever with their new release."

Head North - "God (Bring It Back)"

06/15 - Milk Boy - Philadelphia, PA
06/16 - Lizard Lounge - Lancaster, PA
06/17 - Knitting Factory - Brooklyn, NY
06/18 - Monte Hall - Jersey City, NJ
06/20 - SongByrd - Washington, DC
06/21 - Double Happiness - Columbus, OH
06/22 - Hoosier Dome - Indianapolis, IN
06/23 - Beat Kitchen - Chicago, IL
06/24 - Flink Local 432 - Flint, MI
06/26 - Mahall's - Cleveland, OH
06/27 - Roboto Project - Pittsburgh, PA

06/28 - Studio Waiting Room - Buffalo, NY 

06/29 - TARG - Ottawa, ON
06/30 - Sneaky Dees - Toronto, ON
07/01 - The Middle East - Boston, MA

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Folkfaces - Buffalo, NY

CD art from the Folkfaces newest release How Long?

Red Hot Folk, Blues, Jazz, And Ragtime
Thanks Dan!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Selector Dub Narcotic (Calvin Johnson) On U.S. Tour

Selector Dub Narcotic (Calvin Johnson) On U.S. Tour
Playing Buffalo, NY 4/7 at Sugar City
The Party Is Just Getting Started Out Now K Records

Selector Dub Narcotic (Calvin Johnson of Beat Happening) is on a U.S. Tour now!  Dates are below. Check out Selector Dub Narcotic's last album 'The Party Is Just Getting Started' here.

Selector Dub Narcotic is the pseudonym of choice for Calvin Johnson when he is re-mixing records for the Dub Narcotic Disco Plate series, or engaged in spinning records at a party or other literary functions. Drawing largely from a stack of 45 rpm phonograph records, Selector Dub Narcotic is known to mix the genres dancehall, soul, punk, garage, R&B, rock steady, bubblegum and rockabilly with assorted curiosities of the current underground music scene.

Tour Dates:
3/22 - 40 Watt Club - Athens, GA
3/23 - Graveface Records - Savannah, GA
3/24 - Fresh Produce Records - Macon, GA
3/25 - The Cave - Chapel Hill, NC
3/26 - The Pinhook - Durham, NC
3/28 - Trinity Chapel - Frederick, MD
3/29 - Sign Of The Wagon - York, PA
3/30 - Otto Bar - Baltimore, MD
3/31 - Space 1026 - Philadelphia, PA
4/1 - Consolidated Cardboard - Allentown, PA
4/2 - Babycastles - New York, NY
4/3 - Alphaville - Brooklyn, NY
4/4 - Machines w/ Magnets - Pawtucket, RI
4/5 - Studio 550 - Cambridge, MA
4/6 - Sarah Lawrence College - Bronxville, NY

4/7 - Sugar City - Buffalo, NY

4/8 - Deli Ohio - Canton, OH
4/9 - Kafe Kerouac - Columbus, OH
4/10 - Ice Cream Factory - Cincinnati, OH
4/11 - Bric-A-Brac Records - Chicago, IL

WATCH & SHARE: Selector Dub Narcotic - “And Stuff Like That There”
WATCH & SHARE: Selector Dub Narcotic - “Hotter than Hott”

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Calvin Love - 03.29 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk Place

Calvin Love - 03.29 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk Place

Calvin Love is striving to be a demigod of the highway. An artist driven by a vision which seems to haunt and seduce him. That could be the word. Seduction, as opposed to the banal force of production. People make music. The person reading this probably makes music. Or maybe some other kind of art. Who knows. For you, and for me, and For everyone lucky enough to be familiar with Calvin Love is the quintessential artist as inspiration. A person who peers into himself to reveal something about the world that might otherwise go unarmed, or perhaps merely felt and never properly articulated. I see Calvin at an intersection in every city on earth, unmasking the hidden wonder, the past as construed by movies and the archetypes that populate our minds. The hitchhiker. The gentle, supple poet whose aim is to elucidate humanity for the weary denizens of the weary world. He proves that in the form of cartoon darkness there is a reality beyond that which is fully amenable to basic speech, and so must be corralled in a blind faith in a palette. All great artwork depends on a palette, on the choices that one makes in pulling the shades of that palette into one’s control out of a sense of belief that I don't understand.

Watch videos of Calvin practicing. Go see his shows. He is a rare gift that more than so much of what we're forced to consume offers a vision.  

-- Joe McMurray (Walter TV/Mac Demarco)

03.13 - Memphis, TN @ The High Tone
03.14 - Dallas, TX @ The Crown & Harp
03.15 - Austin, TX @ Barracuda
03.19 - Austin, TX @ Beerland - Panache Hangover Fest
03.21 - New Orleans, LA @ Siberia
03.23 - Knoxville, TN @ The Open Chord
03.26 - Washington, DC @ DC 9
03.27 - Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda's
03.28 - Baltimore, MD @ The Metro Gallery

03.29 Buffalo, NY @ Mohawk Place

03.30 - NYC Residency @ Berlin
03.31 - NYC Residency @ Berlin
04.01 - NYC Residency @ Berlin
04.03 - Montreal, QC @ TBA
04.07 - Toronto, ON @ Silver Dollar
04,28 - Beijing, CN @ Sound of The City Festival
05.04 - Shanghai, CN @ Strawberry Music Festival

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Fist Fight

New movie Fist Fight is being marketed as a comedy but there are many negative ideas that can be verified just by looking at the movie poster. First off the movie poster is basically saying that racial violence is funny as the movie is supposed to be a comedy. My opinion is that it's definitely not OK to use racial tension/violence to promote a movie. Second, the fist fight takes place on school grounds. When is a fist fight OK on school grounds? Never! Violence on school grounds isn't funny at all and it should not be used to promote a movie. Especially with all the gun violence that has taken place on school grounds over the last few years. Third the movie is using violence between teachers as a promotional angle. This is not good, violence between students is one thing but between teachers? How is that funny? Teachers should be trying to stop violence on school grounds, teachers should not be starting or participating in any type of violence. I would think that any teachers who choose to fight on school grounds would be immediately out of a job. Schools should be a safe place for students, not a place where violence between teachers can erupt on any given day. I'm sure there are a few good comedic sequences in the movie seeing as Tracy Morgan stars in it, but I have no desire to see this movie. I would never take any child that is still in school to see this movie either. Please comment below or send any comments to, thank you.    

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The Hathaway Family Plot - Buffalo, NY

The Hathaway Family Plot is a musician living in Buffalo, New York, whose mission is to make music with whatever is at hand. This is not "important" music, nor is it particularly functional. It is simply honest and urgently felt.
All music is under an "Attribution - Non-Commercial - Share Alike" Creative Commons License.
If you have questions about potential use, please contact the artist.

The Hathaway Family Plot's seventh album is a collection of songs written in the first 2/3s of 2016. They seem to have recurring themes of truth, reality, authenticity, belonging, etc.
Released January 12, 2017

Several samples used in this album were pulled from users, including koostix (Dymaxion), dnewtonjr (She sounded like birds), frozenmonotone (Big Machine), bigjoedrummer (Starving Artist Sale!), erdie_deutz (Starting up, letting go), inchadney (Starting up, letting go), qlevihirs (Not gonna leave), and phoenixdk (Prelude to a rational discussion & The Locks).

Otherwise, all pianos, keyboards, vocals, drums, electronics, kazoos, piano horns, psalteries, toy pianos, tin whistles, toy accordions, snake charmers, etc. performed by Kevin. Mostly recorded in amateur fashion at home or on location in a practice room. All songs written by The Hathaway Family Plot except "Delinquent Words," (Jandek), recorded under written permission from Corwood Industries. Creative Commons BY-NC-SA

Thank You, Kevin!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Shooting pucks on net

I love the game of ice hockey. My friends and I were huge Buffalo Sabres fans growing up. I attended a few games as my friends dad had season tickets. Back then the Sabres were competitive enough to be a part of the Stanley Cup finals in '75. One lasting memory is the fog game in which Jim Lorentz swatted a bat out of the air, killing it.

Youtube link of the incident

Wishing the current Sabres team was more competitive I have noticed a trend when the team carries the puck into the offensive zone. Too many passes in an attempt to secure a goal before shooting the puck on net. A single pass can have a negative result if the puck is missed by the intended recipient. Or the pass can be intercepted by an opposing defense-man resulting in a turnover. Every pass attempted before shooting increases the chance of a negative result.
However if the player who carries the puck into the offensive zone attempts a shot on net the end result can have a positive outcome. Here are some examples of a shot taken directly on the net as the puck is carried into the offensive zone...
1. The absolute best result is a goal. If the goalie is caught off guard by the initial shot the puck may end up in the back of the net.
2. The goaltender may cough up a juicy rebound that can be picked up by the shooter or a player coming into the offensive zone. Again a shot on net is better but by this time a pass can be attempted as the wingers hone in on the goal. A good pass can result in a goal at this point as the goalie may be screened by his defense man or an opposing player.
3. The goalie may choose to freeze the initial shot resulting in a face off in the offensive zone.
The important thing to remember is every shot on net can result in a goal, the more shots attempted the better. I have never claimed to be a expert on the game of hockey but over the years I have noticed that a initial shot as the offense rushes toward the net is the best way to go about trying to score a goal. After gaining the lead a team can pass the puck around as much as they want to try and run down the clock. Especially in the 3rd period. Any comments are welcome.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Kenny White - NYC

Kenny White "Long List Of Priors" CD review by Joe Tell.
Kenny White is a well established, highly accomplished and respected musician veteran. Kenny is part of a dying breed of brilliant songwriters who prefer musical restraint and quality sounds over loud brashness. Long List Of Priors touches on many genres but can be described as Americana with rock, ragtime and jazz influences thrown in for good measure.
(The CD title and song titles are in lower case but I will use upper lower in the review.)

Long List Of Priors starts off with A Road Less Traveled. The intro creeps in with many sounds that drew my ear in and left me wondering what type of song this would end up to be. A simple yet melodic piano line drives the song along in style. Kenny's interesting lyrics provide plenty of color and confirm his talent for great songwriting. David Crosby of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young fame provides background vocals.

Che Guevara is my favorite song (so far) on Long List Of Priors. The lyric claims that Che Guevara is not fashionable any more. Writing a song claiming this proves that Kenny is hip to the jive. The song celebrates all things bohemian. Duke Levine provides the cool sound only a lead guitar can bring to the soundscape. A violin, viola, and cello track adds the finishing touches to the artful song. Jazz veteran Catherine Russell and Amy Helm provide background vocals.
Another Bell Unanswered is a love gone wrong anthem to the heartbroken. Kenny's lyrics provide a unique view on the sorry subject of a love that is lost. David Crosby provides background vocals. Award winning instrumentalist, Larry Campbell, provides electric guitar.
Cyberspace is a commentary on the internet and all the things contained therein. The melody is driven by a piano line except for the solo section which turns into a country groove.
The Other Shore is a very well written song. The song could fit right in on any movie soundtrack. I interpreted the lyrics to be about the massive influx of immigrants that entered NY harbor in the early part of the 20th century.
Glad-Handed is a uptempo happier-sounding melody than the last song. Peter Wolf of J. Geils Band fame provides harmonica and some lead vocals. Glad-Handed is a rocker that appears to be about the ups and downs of the music industry.
Lights Over Broadway begins with a melancholic piano line. The jazz tinged tune reminded me of Steely Dan at times.
Charleston is a poignant song about the 2015 church shooting that took place in Charleston, South Carolina. This song would fit right in on a documentary about the mass shooting. Ada Dyer does a fantastic job on the duet vocal.
The Moon Is Low is a solo vocal/piano piece about the in's and out's of closing time at a watering hole.
West L.A. is a smart song that reminded me of Randy Newman. A ragtime piano figure turns into a great melody inspired by New Orleans jazz. One of the best songs on Long List Of Priors.
Color Of The Sky has a nice percussion track, the lyrics speak of a love that is lost and the yearnings that follow.
4000 Reasons To Run and The Olives and The Grapes follow in the same suit as the rest of the songs, closing out the CD.

Kenny's newly released album, LONG LIST OF PRIORS, is aptly named, because he spent decades touring as keyboard player in bands including Jonathan Edwards and Livingston Taylor, He then became one of NYC's most successful record producer and arranger of TV ads. Although he left it all in 2001 to write and tour on behalf of his own humorous and heart-stirring songs of the human condition, he produced Peter Wolf's last four albums. They include the Rolling Stone cited “Essential” FOOL'S PARADE, and SLEEPLESS, one of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time.” Kenny plays keyboards and sings on all four recordings. This Peter Wolf tour, therefore, is a rare event featuring Kenny as guest artist on keyboards, along with Duke Levine on guitar and Marty Ballou on bass, both also members of Kenny's LONG LIST OF PRIORS band. Peter Wolf makes a guest appearance on Kenny's album (along with David Crosby, Larry Campbell and others).

Short Bio: Born in New York City and raised across the river in Fort Lee, New Jersey, Kenny White began his career in the 1970s, touring exclusively as the keyboard player for Jonathan Edwards and Livingston Taylor, with whom he opened Linda Ronstadt’s legendary, “Living in the USA” tour.  He then became a fixture in the NYC studio scene throughout the 1980s and 1990s, producing and arranging literally hundreds of commercials for TV and radio, beginning with “The Unsinkable Taste of Cheerios,” nearly seven years of Chevrolet’s “Heartbeat of America” campaign, and countless ads for the Coca Cola company. Commercial work enabled White to direct artists as renowned and varied as Gladys Knight, Ms. Ronstadt, Mavis Staples, Ricky Skaggs, and Aaron Neville.

Kenny White’s record producing credits include Shawn Colvin’s Grammy-nominated song, “I Don’t Know Why,” as well as the last four solo CDs for Peter Wolf, formerly with the J. Geils Band:  FOOL’S PARADE, SLEEPLESS (named one of Rolling Stone’s “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”), MIDNIGHT SOUVENIRS, which debuted at #45, and the 2016 release A CURE FOR LONELINESS, which reached #23 on the Americana chart in its first 6 weeks. Kenny often joins Wolf’s Midnight Ramblers band on tour.  The productions with Wolf afforded Kenny the opportunity to work with an array of guest artists including Mick Jagger, Merle Haggard, Shelby Lynne, Steve Earle, Neko Case, and to record a track side by side with Keith Richards.  Robert Plant was recently sighted in rapt attention at one of White’s solo shows in the UK and Jackson Browne, the same, at one of Kenny’s L.A. shows.

He still, from time to time, tours with Judy Collins throughout North America and performs the duet “Veterans’ Day” on her recent BOHEMIAN CD.  He often shares a stage with his good friend Cheryl Wheeler, appearing on her live recording, GREETINGS, which he also produced. And though he has all but given up his days as a sideman, in 2014, he accepted an offer by none other than Tom Jones to play in his ‘soul quartet’ for a sold-out, three week US tour.

It is rare that a singer-songwriter is also a producer and arranger.  These in-studio videos of the making of the album illustrate the many layers of Kenny White.
A Road Less Traveled:
The Other Shore:
Another Bell Unanswered:
West L.A.:
Olives And The Grapes:
Che Guevara:
The Color Of The Sky:

Thank You, Tim!