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February movie guide

02/19/18 1:31am | By DAVID TUNIS-GARCIA

February is traditionally known in the film industry as a dump month, the time in which studios take a steamy, hot, collective crap on the proverbial chest of theatergoers around the world.

With Oscar season in full swing and winter weather keeping people indoors, studios put out unmemorable dreck and the movies they secretly hope nobody will see with only a handful of exceptions.

Lay down the Seran wrap and avert your eyes, because this month is already prairie dogging.


Behind the keys: UB instructor George Caldwell's storybook career

11/30/17 2:56am | By BENJAMIN BLANCHET

Caldwell’s held numerous musical director roles for nationally touring plays and played with some of jazz music’s finest groups, including the Count Basie and Duke Ellington orchestras. He’s learned from jazz composers like Wendell Logan and Frank Foster.

The pianist plays stride music with a smile on his face, achieving tonal excellency and exquisite form. He’s completely engrossed in his performances, conveying an original style and striking keys with an effective groove.


The Spectrum's November Playlist

11/16/17 2:07am | By BRENTON J. BLANCHET

October has passed, Halloween is over and just about everyone has created a playlist with multiple entries of “All I Want for Christmas is You.”

But we still have a month before it’s socially acceptable to get festive with Mariah’s five octave vocal range.

Instead of jumping on the holiday bandwagon, check out these fresh November-ready tracks.

N.E.R.D ft.


The best of both worlds

11/16/17 2:01am | By BRENTON J. BLANCHET

The UB Concert Band, led by music department Professor and Director Jon Nelson, joined the Genkin Philharmonic for their annual fall performance at Slee Hall. The two groups came together to present “A Young Person’s Guide to the 20th Century.”


Bill Maher offends and excites at Shea’s

11/13/17 7:34pm | By BRIAN EVANS

Comedians such as Tom Segura or Anthony Jeselnik are characterized as extremely dry comics. Bill Maher is often saddled with this description, but is in a category all his own.

The political personality and stand-up comedian provided theatergoers with an evening of controversial comedy at Shea’s on Sunday night. Maher discussed everything from sex to politics, showing that no topic was too off-color.


“reputation” is Taylor Swift’s most intimate and lyrically stunning album to date

11/13/17 1:34pm | By MADDY FOWLER

The death of Taylor Swift’s reputation led to the birth of her most impressive artistry yet. 

Swift’s new album, “reputation,” draws you in immediately with the fast-paced and edgy “...Ready for It?” Swift declares on the song he “knew I was a robber / first time that he saw me, / stealing hearts and running off and never saying sorry.” 

The lyric is a half tongue-in-cheek, sly jab at the tabloid media’s portrayal of Swift as boy crazy heartbreaker and half smugly self-aware. 

Rather than completely shirking the public’s perception of her, Swift displays a huge leap in maturity by acknowledging her flaws and mistakes.


Toni Morrison delights during career review at Kleinhans

11/10/17 12:12pm | By BENJAMIN BLANCHET

All the makings of a historic night were visible at Kleinhans on Thursday night.

Renowned author Toni Morrison took the stage in another installment of Just Buffalo Literary Center’s 2017-18 BABEL series. Morrison, speaking on the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s address in the same venue, discussed her lengthy career and discussed each of her 11 well-read novels.

Before the main event, singer-songwriter Drea d’Nur opened the evening with a dose of soul. The artist played a deep ranging rendition of “A Change is Gonna Come” met with thunderous applause.


A psychedelic smash comes to downtown Buffalo

11/09/17 9:18pm | By Chris Yang

Turkuaz had barely ran through their latest album “Digitonium,” three hours into their set.

The group ended the show with their hit song “The Generator.” Lead vocalist and guitarist Dave Brandwein thanked the crowd, signed off and the rest of the group followed off stage. The show ended without Turkuaz performing their most popular song, much to the crowd’s disappointment. Some clapped for the end but most hollered for an encore.


A vintage soul: Q&A with Haley Reinhart

11/09/17 10:39am | By BRENTON J. BLANCHET

The ’60s haven’t ended yet, at least not until Haley Reinhart puts down the microphone.

The “American Idol” alum and Postmodern Jukebox singer just released her third studio album, “What’s That Sound?” on Sept. 22. The record is a classy and tasteful collection of cover songs and originals, all featuring Reinhart’s golden voice.

At 27 years old, Reinhart’s career is just beginning. “American Idol” gave her the tools for success in 2011, but Reinhart is embarking on her own journey to the past.

The singer discussed her musical adventure, new album and touring the world in an exclusive interview with The Spectrum.


November movie guide

11/06/17 11:01am | By DAVID TUNIS-GARCIA

Well this one snuck up on me.

November holds two of this year’s biggest releases in the first two weeks, along with a few other curiosities to fill in the back end of the month.

Let’s dive right in because I can’t wait to talk about...


Janet Jackson rouses downtown Buffalo

11/06/17 10:55am | By BENJAMIN BLANCHET

The Grammy-award winning music icon appeared Saturday night at the KeyBank Center, one of her stops on her ongoing State of the World tour. Jackson performed over 30 songs to a crowd of thousands downtown, impressing through a series of electric dance numbers and up-tempo pop jams.


Bill Maher

Q&A with Bill Maher

11/02/17 1:49pm | By BRIAN EVANS

Bill Maher is no stranger to stirring the pot.

The host of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” and stand-up comedian will continue his stream of political anecdotes and observations, playing downtown at Shea’s Performing Arts Center on Nov.


Q&A with comedian Tom Segura​

10/30/17 10:51am | By BENJAMIN BLANCHET

Tom Segura’s comedy travels a myriad of avenues. From podcasts to multiple stand-up specials on Netflix, the Ohio-born comedian spreads jokes in any way he can.

His upcoming tour, “No Teeth No Entry,” will continue to cast his line out in the comic sea, hitting the Center for the Arts (CFA) on Nov.


The Grapevine

10/19/17 11:28am | By BRENTON J. BLANCHET

The weekend before “Hallo-weekend” can be pretty lame. Nobody’s dressing up, nobody’s handing out free snacks and worst of all, nobody’s playing “Monster Mash” all night at their headache-provoking basement party.

But who needs “Monster Mash” when you can listen to other songs for an hour and a half?


'Bob Dylan was not booed'

10/16/17 11:20am | By BRENTON BLANCHET

It’s hard to dismiss a 52-year-old story but Professor Bruce Jackson isn’t afraid to try.

When Bob Dylan played his first-ever electric set at the 1965 Newport Folk Festival in Newport, Rhode Island, legend insists that the crowd booed him.

Dylan’s decision to go electric infuriated the crowd, according to this popular belief.