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Multi-idiomatic artist Tony Conrad, who taught a Media Studies class at the University at Buffalo, heavily influenced students Sean Mackowiak and Jonathan Donahue, co-founders of seminal alternative band Mercury Rev. Here is a look at some other Western New Yorkers who had an impact on world-famous musicians: Rick James ---> Prince: The punk-funk crafted by Bu…

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Mercury Rev makes music that sounds like it has always existed, as if it was plucked from the silver-blue ether fully formed, a perfect, reverb-laden kaleidoscope of transformative sound. Of course, that's not how it actually happened. In fact, this seminal alternative band was formed right here on planet earth, by mere mortals who happened to be attending the Universit…

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Touring laser light party with DJ Cookie Monsta invaded Buffalo on Friday, April 20, 2018, in VENU in the Chippewa District. See the assortment of partiers who reveled in the theme.

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Touring off "Goths," a concept album about the life of a goth musician in the 1980s, Mountain Goats played Friday, April 20, 2018, in Babeville's Asbury Hall.

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Filmmaker, director, musician and actor Peter McGennis crafted 2013's "Queen City" as a love letter to Buffalo's musical and architectural history, and he brought some of the finest American roots musicians the world has known – Sharon Jones, Allen Toussaint, James Cotton and others – to town in service of the film's attendant soundtrack. McGennis is releasing a limited…

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Dweezil Zappa brought his "Choice Cuts!" tour to UB's Center for the Arts on Wednesday, offering a personally curated tour of his late father Frank's estimable catalog, with a concentration on what we'll call "the trickier numbers" – tunes equal parts diabolically complex, deeply musical, and thrillingly unique. This was the 10th time Dweezil has performed in the Buffal…

Food and Drink

1) Runway 11.0, fashion shows at 3 and 8 p.m. April 21 in Buffalo State College's Campbell Student Union (1300 Elmwood Ave.). Admission is $10 for students, $15 for general public for the 3 p.m. slot, while general admission is $25 for the later time. Ticket information may be found here. Commentary: Organized fashion events are few and far between in Buffalo, but Runwa…

Columns

It's about damn time. The 2018 Pulitzer Prizes were announced this week, and a win in one category in particular turned some heads and encouraged the wagging of some tongues. The music prize went to hip-hop artist Kendrick Lamar and his album "DAMN." This is the first time a hip-hop artist has won a music Pulitzer, which seems absurd on the face of it, but becomes more …

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Less than a year after leading a wild party for VENU's first birthday, MTV "Jersey Shore" star Pauly D will return to the area to celebrate his own birthday with a DJ show from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. July 1 at Sunset Bay Beach Club (1028 South Shore Drive, Irving). Tickets range from $25 to $45 and may be purchased here. Admission includes access both to the beach and the be…

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Since 2005, the Town Ballroom has been a prime destination for just-breaking young bands and tenured veterans alike. You might see an of-the-moment EDM act one night, an underground legend or jam band the next, and an oldie-but-goodie alt-icon, a la Psychedelic Furs or Peter Murphy, the next. Town Casino From the 1940s through the '60s, the site at 681 Main St. was k…

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The Mountain Goats, 7 p.m. April 20, Babeville's Asbury Hall (341 Delaware Ave), $25. Just over two years since last performing at the Babeville complex, the much revered lo-fi indie act the Mountain Goats is set to return to Asbury Hall. Band leader John Darnielle and crew previously played town after releasing a collection of nostalgic takes on pro wrestling in 201…

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A Perfect Circle, "So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish" The fourth advance single from A Perfect Circle's fourth album – "Eat the Elephant," due April 20 – takes its name from the Douglas Adams trilogy "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." It's at once buoyant and biting. Classic APC, then. Kamasi Washington, "The Space Travelers Lullaby" Like a love song t…

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English emo pop-punk band Moose Blood attracted fans to Buffalo on Tuesday, April 17, 2018, in the Town Ballroom. See the fans and some shots of the band.

Buffalo

The seventh annual Live at Larkin concert series boasts a mix of local and national acts across a spectrum of genres that includes funk, blues, Afrobeat, pop, R&B and indie-rock. The series kicks off June 6 and continues on consecutive Wednesdays through Sept. 5, with a one-week break July 4. All shows begin at 5 p.m., run through 8:30 p.m. and are free and open to …

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Bone Thugs-N-Harmony will perform at 7 p.m. May 31 in the Rapids Theatre (1711 Main St., Niagara Falls). The Cleveland rap outfit emerged in the mid-1990s with its 1995 debut album, "E 1999 Eternal." The record featured the breakout Grammy-winning hit single "Crossroads." Last summer, the group released its 10th studio album, "Next Wave." The evening's opening acts h…