The grapevine: Your weekly collection of Buffalo’s sonic selections


Halloween is a week away and students are preparing to go out for the fun weekend. If you’re looking to plan something for this week, grab some pals and immerse yourself in Buffalo’s music scene.

Wednesday, Oct. 26

Lucius - Babeville

Brooklyn-based indie group Lucius will be playing at Babeville this week. Singers Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig, whose lo-fi pop approach is very much compelling, head Lucius.

The band is touring to promote their second album Good Grief, which was released in March to moderate acclaim. The album features infectious lyrics and instrumentation on songs like “Born Again Teen” and “Gone Insane.”

If you’re looking to mix up your week with indie, Lucius will fulfill your musical appetite on Wednesday.

Friday, Oct. 28

The Wailers - Bear’s Den at Seneca Niagara Casino

The Wailers, who famously backed the great Bob Marley, will be performing Friday night. The classic reggae group from Kingston is on tour and is still joined by original member Aston “Fams” Barrett on bass.

Barrett’s original group was an integral part to albums like Exodus where they backed Marley’s top-tier musical ability.

Now reformed, the band emulates a similar vibe from their iconic ’70s records. Prepare to experience a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with the Wailers this weekend when they take over the falls.

Friday, Oct. 28 and Saturday, Oct. 29

Lotus – Town Ballroom

Lotus, the instrumental jazz band full of good vibes, will be holding two shows in Buffalo this weekend. No matter what your Halloween plans look like, this show should fit in perfectly.

Lotus was formed in 1999 and plays mostly instrumental music that pulls inspiration from both electronic musicians and jazz-funk riffs. The Saturday show has a Space Disco theme, just in time for Halloween. This show will move you out of the bars and basements and into another galaxy.

Saturday, Oct. 29

Steve Coleman and Five Elements - Albright–Knox Art Gallery

Saxophonist Steve Coleman will be performing at the Albright-Knox on Saturday. Coleman is most known for creating the genre M-Base – a style that offers a combination of funk, jazz and everything in-between.

The alto saxophonist’s performance will kick off Albright-Knox’s Art of Jazz series, which highlights some of jazz music’s golden artists.

The sounds of trumpeter Jonathan Findlayson and bassist Anthony Tidd, among others, will accompany Coleman’s brilliant sax playing. Tickets are $29.

Saturday, Oct. 29

Steve Vai - Riviera Theatre

One of the premier guitar players in the galaxy will be stopping by Buffalo’s Riviera Theatre. Steve Vai will be displaying his virtuoso sound while commemorating the 25th anniversary of his album Passion and Warfare.

The guitarist is mostly famous for his songs with legendary musician Frank Zappa. Vai has also shown off his guitar technique with the likes of rock stars Alice Cooper and David Lee Roth. Your mind will be blown when you witness this world-class guitarist play live, so don’t miss out.

Saturday, Oct. 29

Billy Ocean - Bear’s Den at Seneca Niagara Casino

Rhythmic tides will be rolling into the Seneca Niagara Casino. Billy Ocean, known for hits such as “Caribbean Queen” and “Suddenly,” will be performing at what is sure to be a lively house.

The British singer is best remembered for his successful stint in the ’80s, which included number one hits and a Grammy win. Ocean has collaborated with musicians like R. Kelly and La Toya Jackson along with boasting his own catchy tunes. Expect to “share the same dream” as Ocean when you hear him rock the house on Saturday. 

Benjamin Blanchet is a staff writer and can be reached at