Woody Guthrie

Hi Members! We’ve been kicking around names for our newsletter and have decided that we’d like your input. Ya know, to get the chat between you going like “did you read the November Village Voice? The article about the Steve Earle Tribute was fantastic. Let’s plan to go.”

One word would be best but it can be two words.

Email me at samfoundation at gmail.com with your choices.

And we have another request. We’d like to hear from you. Our newsletter is full of us and our events but we’d like to hear testimonials from you about your experience being a member of the Foundation, or a Foundation event you participated in, or even a “review” of sorts which could include your Americana experiences elsewhere. So change your ribbons in your typewriters and send us stuff for our upcoming newsletters. Again, email me at samfoundation at gmail.com.

Thanks, and as always, please email me with ideas and concerns,

Angela Hastings

Director of Membership

Sportsmen’s AMF kicks off Americana Music Appreciation Program!

Valley Community CenterOn October 18th your SAMF kicked of the fall semester after school session at the Valley Community Center with an Americana music Appreciation program. Lead by Katie (Panfil) Clark), the program focuses on and provides participating students with an introduction to classic Americana tunes, folk tunes and the artists that sang them.

Songs ranging from Buffalo Girls, If I had a hammer, Erie Canal and Orange Blossom Special, to name a few will be introduced, along with artists, Pete Seeger, Stephen Foster, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash.

Valley Community CenterNo lecture series for sure, Katie’s program is highly interactive. Within a few minutes after the start of the first class, the kids were singing and dancing! Along with the songs and artists, Katie is introducing musical instruments to the kids and has them playing along using rhythm sticks, xylophones and recorders.

Over the weeks to come, several special guest artists will be stopping by to help Katie introduce some new tunes and musical instruments.

The program is scheduled at 5:30-6:30 for nine Tuesdays, wrapping up December 20th with a recital for friends, family and Valley Center staff.

Don Nelson
Vice President SAMF
Director of Education

Rock ‘n Roll Workshop

Alan Whitney & Tim Pitcher

Alan Whitney & Tim Pitcher

Demonstrating once again that music is truly a universal language, your Sportsmen’s AMF kicked off our Rock ‘n Roll workshop at The International Preparatory School, School 198 at Grover. Headed by Tim Pitcher and Alan Whitney at least a dozen students will not only be introduced to and learn how to play acoustic, electric and bass guitars and drums but will be recording their performances. kicking off Monday afternoon October 31st, the high school students were really excited about the program. All of the students had a chance to try out the guitars and test their chops on the drums. Over the weeks to come the students will be given the opportunity to choose and have recorded, songs they want to perform, even originals!

The program is an adaptation of a one day program Tim and Alan have been conducting at regional schools for at least ten years. Operating in cooperation with Child and Adolescent Treatment services, our workshop will run for 10 1.5 hour sessions culminating in a recital for friends faculty and family. While Tim and “Adub” have gotten the program off to a great start a special shout out and “THANK YOU!” has to go to Allentown Music who has generously loaned guitars, amps and a drum kit, without which the program wouldn’t be the same.

As mentioned, the students embraced the program immediately. When they were reminded that the next get together would be in two days, one student asked “why can’t we do it tomorrow?!”

Don Nelson
Vice President SAMF
Director of Education


“To foster, promote and expand community appreciation for Americana music from Buffalo and Western New York through the production and sponsorship of performance and broadcast events and presentation of seminars and workshops on Americana music.” – mission statement of the Sportsmen’s Americana Music Foundation

Make sure you read the articles this month from Don Nelson, SAM Foundation Vice -President. Don is the Chair of our Education Committee and he has been going a great job in helping us achieve that part of our mission statement. We’ve had several guitar classes at the Valley Community Center and now we’re expanding into Music Appreciation, a Guitar Social and a Rock and Roll workshop. It’s a great resource for us to have members of the Foundation who are also great musicians and are interested in teaching their skills. We’re refining the makeup of the Education Committee and in a future newsletter we’ll publish the members of all the committees.

Steve Earle & MeWe have quite a few Foundation events coming up soon. The annual Steve Earle Tribute will donate all the proceeds to The SAM Foundation and the Friends of the Night People. It’s only a $7 ticket and I think it will be a fantastic show from a roster of the best musicians in Western New York. Let’s sellout the Tavern for this show. See Joe McCarthy’s article in this issue.

Billy Sheehan

Billy Sheehan

During Christmas week, Billy Sheehan is once again organizing a concert at the Tavern to benefit the SAMF. More details will be coming soon on Facebook, both the Tavern and Foundation pages, and our next newsletter.

For next year, we’ll start on March 5, 2017 as the date of our 3rd Annual SzelestFest, honoring Buffalo’s legendary Stan Szelest. Thanks to all of you who responded to our survey to help choose a headliner for next year’s Sportsmen’s Americana Music Foundation Festival. We’ll be moving the Fest from June to mid-September and we’re working now on putting it all together. And more events are in the discussion phase.

My favorite shows of the past month were Woody Pines and The Howlin’ Brothers, both at the Sportsmen’s Tavern and the Canal Street Band at Pausa Art House. I just love the live performances of these bands, but this is very subjective. I’m sure I missed some great shows; I can’t go to them all. If you see a show you’re really enthused about, let your fellow members know about it by writing us a review of the show. Coming up before the end of the year, I’m really looking forward to Elvis Costello at Shea’s, Professor Louie and the Crowmatix on 11/6 at The Sportsmen’s, Cowboy Hour with The Skiffle Minstrels on Veteran’s Day 11/11, the Wood Brothers the same night at the Town Ballroom and Wayne Hancock, Bill Kirchen and Radney Foster at the Tavern.

Speaking of Professor Louie, he has a great new album out that has been nominated for several Grammys, “Music From Hurley Mountain.” I wasn’t aware of this album until I heard the Grammy news and now I love it. Check it out. Now I’m really looking forward to seeing them November 6th. Also, Sportsmen’s alumni The Black Lillies have also been nominated for three Grammys. Look up their 2016 album, “Hard to Please.”

Robert J. McLennan
SAM Foundation

Steve Earle Tribute Night

Steve Earle Tribute 2016Back in 1955, one Stephen Fain Earle landed on this orb and in no time, took to the music of Texas and beyond. Barely out of his teens, Steve, guitar on the ready, was kickin’ around honky-tonks and taverns with his mentors Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark. He made a splash of his own in 1986 with the album Guitar Town and, besides his drug-fueled four year “hiatus”, hasn’t stopped since. He’s recorded some 16 studio albums and won three Grammys, while combining country, rock, folk, blues, and even Celtic, bluegrass and gospel influences. He’s railed against the Nashville establishment, country radio, and anyone else who would try to put his music into a genre-specific box, while also battling drug addiction, the criminal justice system (especially the death penalty), right wing politics and more than a few ex-wives. His story songs are like three-minute novels with characters that come alive, his political songs are biting but not preachy, his tales of woe really drip with ache and his love songs are sweet without the sap.

But of all the singer-songwriters, why a tribute to Earle? Well it all started with some Buffalo-area songwriters discussing their influences over a pint (or seven). The consistently strong song craft of Steve Earle appeared to be the common denominator. And despite his success, Earle has failed to become a household name among the general public. So why not get our friends together, celebrate this amazing music and possibly introduce folks to some great songs that they may never hear live anywhere else? Sure, Earle still plays live on a regular basis, most recently an acoustic tour with Shawn Colvin in support of their recent collaborative album Colvin & Earle. However, that tour did not make it to Buffalo; Chautauqua Institution being the closest venue. And even if you can catch Earle live, he has such an amazing back catalogue, there’s no way he can play ‘em all, so many great songs fall through the cracks.

And that’s why we are proud to present the annual Steve Earle Tribute Night on Saturday November 12 at the mighty Sportsmen’s Tavern. Show starts at 8 pm, sharp, so get there early!

Joe McCarthy, Kim McCarthy, Shawn Colvin, Steve Earle

Joe McCarthy, Kim McCarthy, Shawn Colvin, Steve Earle

Artists include many friends of the Sportsmen’s Americana Music Foundation and veterans of the rich Buffalo music scene: Dee Adams, Leroy Townes, Ten Cent Howl, Flatbed, Jim Whitford & Cathy Carfagna, Shaky Stage, Chris Jones of Skiffle Minstrels and McCarthyizm. On any given night, you are bound to catch original music by one of these artists on the hallowed boards of the Sportsmen’s stage, but it’s always interesting to experience the tasty variety of their Earle-tune interpretations. Also, Bob Silvestri, Entertainment Writer for BestofWNY.com, and fellow Steve Earle fanatic, will bring his enthusiasm for music as MC of the show. And the best part is that proceeds of show will benefit The Sportsmen’s Americana Foundation and Friends of Night People. Everybody wins. Which is very much NOT like the gritty stories told in most Steve Earle tunes.

Joe McCarthy


If you are an Active member and do not have a SAMF membership card, please email me at samusicfoundation at gmail.com. 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.


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
  • American Repertory Theater – $10 (half off admission)
  • Red Thread Theater – $15 (regularaly $25)

Author ch0yx

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