We’ve had a fantastic year because of your support and want to thank you by throwing a party for you!! On February 13th, the eve of St. Valentine’s Day, we are holding a shindig at Flying Bison Brewery for you to show our appreciation. Each Active Member will receive 2 beers and a piece of chocolate, and anyone who renews that evening or brings a friend, they will also receive these gifts. We will be featuring live Music by Bill Smith from Ten Cent Howl, with a couple special guests, and raffles for some of our SAMF merchandise.

So…SAVE THE DATE: February 13th, 2017, from 6:00 til 9:00 pm at Flying Bison Brewery, 840 Seneca St., Buffalo, NY 14210.

Look for our Survey Monkey in the next couple of weeks to RSVP. It will come via email and for those of you without email, please contact one of the SAMF board members.

Other Member News:

McCarthyizm and Korona Jewelers have renewed their Corporate Sponsorship for another year. Thanks so much!! And please remember, along with regular memberships, you may also donate any amount, any time.

Beer & Chocolate

Angela Hastings, Director of Membership


Some random musical thoughts for this month:

The Buffalo Musicians Christmas Party, held on two nights, December 21st and 22nd, was an amazing success. Not only were there big crowds and a festive atmosphere both nights, but the musicians donated the profits of $7,200 to the Foundation. A big thanks to Billy Sheehan, Bobby Lebel, Jessie Galante and a host of other great Buffalo musicians.

Buffalo Musicians Christmas Party

Buffalo Musicians Christmas Party

Speaking of Foundation events, Valentine’s Eve, February 13th will be our Beer and Chocolate Membership Appreciation/Drive at Flying Bison Brewery from 6-9PM. Members will receive two free pints of the best beer in Buffalo and some chocolate. Members are asked to bring their friends to the party to sign them up in the SAM Foundation, and they will also receive the beer and chocolate. And since we are a Music Foundation, there will be music. Ten Cent Howl’s Bill Smith will be premiering some of his new songs and he’ll be joined by special guests as well. There will also be raffles and SAMF merchandise will be available. Space is limited so get your guest pass early to attend.

I’m really looking forward to the Saturday night Honky-Tonk nights at the Sportsmen’s Tavern. Stone Country will open the show each night with one of Buffalo’s great Americana bands to follow. This Saturday, January 14th will feature Leroy Townes and January 21st will be Ten Cent Howl.

Books and Music: Recently, I read “Born To Run”, Bruce Springsteen’s memoir, and “Testimony” by Robbie Robertson. I really enjoyed them, and they both led me back to re-listen to some of their music as well. The book “Testimony” led me to the soundtrack of the book, some of Robbie’s choice live cuts with The Band, as well as some from his great solo albums. What else have I been listening to? There’s not enough time for it all, but my listening has included several albums by Wayne Hancock, Bill Kirchen’s new album with Austin De Lone, “Transatlantica”, “Redemption and Ruin” by Devil Makes Three, Todd Snider’s “Eastside Bulldog”, the new Rolling Stones’ blues album, “Blue and Lonesome”, Drive By Truckers’ “American Band”, several albums by Blackie and the Rodeo Kings and an Irish band named Lynched and their new album “Cold Old Fire”. Incidentally, the new Blackie and the Rodeo Kings album is just coming out, “Kings and Kings” and it features a long list of guests and collaborators, including Jason Isbell, Rodney Crowell, Buddy Miller, Keb’ Mo’ and Vince Gill. Lee Harvey Osmond (Tom Wilson of BRK) will be at the Sportsmen’s Tavern on Sunday, January 15th.


Let’s start with The Sportsmen’s Tavern. The Canal Street String Band, including Sportsmen’s regular Jim Whitford, will be there on January 22nd. The great guitarist Albert Lee will be at the Tavern on February 12th and Whitney Rose appears on February 18th.

At 189 Public House, Fred Eaglesmith will be there on February 26th.

At Babeville, in the 9th Ward, The Leones with Sonny Baker and Chevron Bloom are on for February 18th. And Royal Wood, Donna Chittester and Grace Stumberg are on March 1st.

At Buffalo Ironworks, Daniel Bachman is January 26th, Marco Benevento is January 31st and Donna The Buffalo is on February 9th.

Thanks to Dwane Hall from The Sportsmen’s, Clark Crook at 189, Anna Kapechuck from Babeville and Josh Holtzmen from Ironworks. They’re all our partners in the WNY music scene; support LIVE MUSIC!

If you’re interested in winning any of these tickets, see your member newsletter for details on how to enter.

Not a member yet? Join today!

Bob McLennan, President

SAM Foundation


SAMF VP, Don Nelson, presented the cellos purchased by the SAM Foundation to Buffalo String Works.

Music Career Mentoring Workshops for Buffalo Students

Sponsored by the SAM Foundation

We started with Doug Yeomans in November, pictured here with Bob James, the organizer of the workshops, and Josh English on Drums. We continued with David Miller in December, Caitlin Koch is scheduled for January and there will be two more this school year.

Kenny’s Korner

Annual fundraiser for the Sportsmen’s Americana Music Foundation that celebrates the life and music of Stan Szelest.

Sportsmen’s Tavern

326 Amherst St.
Buffalo NY 14207

Sunday March 5 @ 3pm

Szelest Fest III

$10 adv. $15 dos.

Born in Buffalo, New York, in 1958 Szelest formed Stan and the Ravens, a blues group that became popular in western New York. In 1960, at the age of seventeen, he started to work with Ronnie Hawkins and his backing group, the Hawks. Calling Szelest “a living fountain of rock and roll piano”, Hawks bass player Rick Danko claimed to have developed his bass style by copying Szelest’s left-hand work on piano. Szelest left the Hawks a little over a year later and was replaced by Richard Manuel. The Hawks later left Hawkins to form an act of their own, which eventually came to …be named The Band. In 1967, Stan and the Ravens broke up, and two of its members, Calandra and Mallaber, joined the group Tony Galla and the Rising Sons, which in 1968 changed its name to Raven. With David Lucas as producer, the new band recorded the song “Farmer’s Daughter”, written by Szelest, which helped the band to secure a contract with Columbia Records.

Szelest also recorded with King Biscuit Boy (Richard Newell), the noted harp player, slide guitarist and singer from Hamilton, Ontario, about 50 miles from Buffalo.

In the summer of 1984, Szelest and Levon Helm played together again as members of the short-lived septet the Woodstock All-Stars. After Manuel’s death in 1986, Szelest was called back to The Band, playing live with them in 1990 and participating in rehearsals and writing for their new record deal with CBS Records. He died of a heart attack in 1991 while in Woodstock recording with Levon Helm, Rick Danko and Garth Hudson. His piano playing can be heard on The Band’s album Jericho, released in 1993, on “Blind Willie McTell” and “Atlantic City”. The album also features the song “Too Soon Gone”, co-written by Jules Shear after Szelest handed him over 16 bars of a melody, which sat around Shear’s Woodstock home. When Szelest died, Shear was called by both Levon Helm and Rick Danko and was asked to finish the song as a tribute Szelest; apparently Szelest had begun the song as a tribute to the late Richard Manuel. The album is dedicated to Manuel and Szelest with the caption “Too Soon Gone” in the liner notes. Szelest was also in Lonnie Mack’s band during the 1980s and Played on Mack’s albums Strike Like Lightning and Attack of the Killer V; he can also be seen in several videos playing in Mack’s band during that period.



Member News

If you are an Active member and do not have a SAMF membership card, please email me at If you are unsure if you’re an Active member, please don’t hesitate to ask.

NOTE: To receive discounts, you must show your membership card. To enter to win tickets, you must be an Active member. And as always, please don’t hesitate to contact me at the email address above.

Discounts For Members

The discounts we’ve arranged at this time are:

  • Sportsmen’s Tavern – The first Tuesday of every month, starting on April 5th, all members who show their card at the door will get free admission to The Twang Gang.
  • Buffalo Ironworks – 10% off all food items
  • Record Theatre – 10% off all regular priced items
  • Allentown Music – 10% off all regular items
  • Smolen/Bonghi CPA – 10% off all tax preparation and accounting services
  • Korona Jewelry – 2 discounts
    • Watch batteries installed for $5 instead of $7.
    • 25% off the regular price of anything in stock.
  • Ellicott Small Animal Hospital 30% off regular exam
  • Flying Bison Brewery – 10% off
  • Buffalo History Museum – buy one regular admission and get one free.
  • American Reperatory Theater – $10 tickets (1/2 price)
  • Red Thread Theater – $15 ticket (regularly $25)

Author ch0yx

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