I thought about writing this column on my alma mater, St. Bonaventure, and its berths in the men's and women's NCAA tournaments. Then, we received a press release on something I felt I needed to write about, which you'll see below. I'll just say, "Go Bonnies," and move on.
I didn't know that John Mayer had scheduled a gig at Shea's Performing Arts Center in Buffalo until he canceled it. Nor did I know that he had scheduled an 18-city tour in support of his album, "Born and Raised," which will come out May 22.
What I do know is that Mayer's throat is in rough shape these days due to the return of his granuloma.
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It's hard for me to ever feel bad for celebrities, but when I read Mayer's comment on the tour cancellation, I felt for him.
Here's what he wrote to his fans: "Nothing feels worse than having to break the stage down before the performance, and I mean nothing. I love this band you were going to hear, I love the guys and girls I work with, and the only thing that stops me from devolving into a puddle of tears is knowing that it's a long life, and the greatest gift in this world is being able to create music no matter what the circumstances."
Leave it to Mayer to be a little dramatic about it all, but at least the guy likes to perform for his fans.
I'm definitely not one of them.
If there's a surefire way to make me leave a room or turn off the radio, it's putting on a John Mayer tune. When I say that I've never heard a song of his that I like, I mean it.
Nevertheless, good luck to him, and if you had bought tickets to one of his shows, I'm sorry that you'll be missing out.
Here's what's going on in the area:
Barbara Jean Releases CD: Local songwriter and jazz singer Barbara Jean released her second full-length, original CD entitled "Cool" recently. The CD followed the release of her debut CD, "Sweet."
Barbara Jean has performed with artists such as Razz and Friends, Harold Olson, Germaine and Pappalardo Big Bands, Jazz Train, and her trio, Satin Doll. She has played at area jazz events, including the Ellicottville Jazz Festival, the JCC Jazz Festival and Erie's Jazz Walk, and will play JazzErie on March 24 and the Lewiston Jazz Festival on Aug. 25.
The new CD's 13 tracks incorporate a variety of musical styles, including easy-listening, jazz, pop, swing and Latin. All of the songs were written and sung by Barbara Jean and performed by Buffalo musicians Michael T. Jones on piano, Cameron Kayne on bass, Dave Schiavone on sax and flute, and New York City drummer Carmen Intorre. North Tonawanda's Ken Petersen played pedal steel on a tune, along with Barbara Jean's husband, local rocker Steve Strickland on piano. In addition, Barbara Jean's son, Tim Strickland, added his voice to two tracks.
"Cool" is available at Strickland Optical, 1911 Washington St., Jamestown, and on barbarajeanjazz.com.
March 'Soup and Song' To Be Held Friday: The featured act for the March edition of St. Susan Center's "Soup and a Song" series will be Kidder United Methodist Church praise band Kidder Alive. The series, which will conclude Friday night, combines concerts by local artists with open-mic sessions.
For the admission price of $10, attendees will experience an evening of live musical entertainment and a meal consisting of soup, several varieties of bread, crackers, desserts, coffee, tea and hot chocolate.
Proceeds from the series will benefit St. Susan Center, which served 24 percent more meals last month than in February 2011.
"I am extremely thankful for the support of our community," said Sue Colwell, executive director. "We could not make it without you."
Logistical support for the program is provided by Trinity Guitars, the Jamestown-based purveyor of fine stringed instruments and audio gear. Jim Holler, Trinity Guitars owner, has coordinated the talent for the events and has provided the sound system. WRFA's Jason Sample will return as the master of ceremonies.
The event will be held at St. Susan Center, located in the Gateway Center at 31 Water St., Jamestown. The public will be admitted at 6 p.m. The open-mic segment will start at 6:30, and Kidder Alive will take the stage at 7:40. The evening's events will end at 9.
"Kidder Church is committed to St. Susan Center through financial support, but this event allows us to share our talents to build up their ministry," said Pastor Rick LaDue. "We'll worship, have fun and raise money for a vital need. Everybody wins."
Kidder Alive features Steve Swanson, Bob Servis, Valerie Murphy, Jason Tonon, Dick Gould, Bonnie Sleight, Holler and LaDue.
"As we close out the 2012 version of 'Soup and A Song,' I am thankful for all the musicians who have donated their time and talents," Holler said. "We have had fun, made some new friends, and raised money and awareness for St. Susan Center."
Those interested in performing during the open-mic segment should contact Holler at 665-4490, or sign up in person at Trinity Guitars, 800 W. Third St., Jamestown.
Blue Grass Jam: 7-10, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave., Celoron. All area bluegrass musicians are welcome to sit in and play.
Derek Davis: 6-9, The Lakeview, 13 Water St., Mayville.
BandHanna: 9-1, Peek'n Peak, 1405 Olde Road, Findley Lake.
Ken Hardley and the Henways: 9-1, Waddington's Tavern, 344 W. Main St., Falconer.
Smackdab: 9:30-1:30, Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave., Jamestown.
"Saint Patty's Day" party: 8-midnight, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave., Celoron. DJs Unlimited will provide the music.
Seamus Kennedy: 8, 1891 Fredonia Opera House. Tickets are $15 for the general public and $13 for Opera House members. Purchase tickets in person at the Opera House Box Office, by phone at 679-1891 through Friday from 1-5 p.m. or at fredopera.org.
Rob Vance: 9, Pine Junction, 9757 Bailey Hill Road in Sherman.
Ken Hardley and the Henways: 9-1, Kennedy Grill, 674 Route 394, Kennedy.
The Entertainment Events Preview highlights concerts, festivals and other happenings in the region in each Thursday's paper. Suggestions for submission can be sent to Scott Shelters by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 487-1111, ext. 253.