Digging A Way Home
A Bemus Point native, Max Garcia Conover, has released his first full length album, “Burrow.”
Conover, who is currently a Maine-based songwriter, has put out two EPs including “EP #1” and “Birches Lo.” In 2012, Conover was named Maine’s Best New Act in the Portland Best Music Awards.
According to Conover, his quick-fingered, mostly acoustic songs are grounded in natural landscapes and flicker with revelation.
“These songs are about digging in, or trying to, through the work that we do and the art that we make,” said Conover.
The 11-song album features a whole new lineup of tunes that previously have only been available on Conover’s “Sunday Sessions,” which is a series of home recordings that are available to download for free on BandCamp.com.
What I find most interesting about “Burrow” is how each song flows gently into the next, yet each is unique. It’s an album that shouts “listen to me from beginning to end,” which is a breath of fresh air in a time where the majority of songs released by the music industry are made-to-order hits or throwaway album fillers.
Conover’s lyrical style is poetic in a manner that doesn’t draw attention away from the smooth acoustic guitar sound, but rather compliments it. “Burrow,” the title track, is one of my favorite songs on the album. The lyrics of the song actually reference the first song on the album, “Teem,” which is a shout-out to John Keats in several ways. And, the opening words of “Burrow” are both powerful and inspiring. But, the most touching aspect of the song is found in the last minute, where Conover wraps the tune up with: “I was more when I left here, more when I left here. I Never came back home. I’ve been digging holes. I keep digging holes. Call it a burrow, a way home.”
“Burrow” can be streamed in its entirety at maxgarciaconover.band camp.com/album/burrow and on SoundCloud.com. The album was released through Clip Records on Tuesday, and is available for purchase at maxgarciaconover.com. A portion of the album sales will be donated to Evergreen Health Services, a nonprofit based out of Buffalo with a branch in Jamestown, that works to provide medical services and support to marginalized populations.
Conover will be back in Chautauqua County to play for the third time at the Great Blue Heron Music Festival in July.
As per usual, here are the highlights and happenings going on in the area.
Comedy at JSBA Continues Friday Night: The Jamestown Savings Bank Arena is heading into its third week of the Wits n’ Giggles: Friday Night Comedy Series. The show will take place in the upstairs Arena Club from 6-9 p.m.
This week’s edition of Wits n’ Giggles will feature headliner Kris Shaw, one of the rising stars of the comedy circuit. He has a highly energetic, creative and animated style that has made him a favorite in comedy clubs across the country and in Canada. Shaw has recently been seen in several national television commercials and had a recurring extra role on the CBS series, “Close to Home.”
The night will also include opening act Nola J, a female comedian originally from Milwaukee, Wis. Her career as a comic began when she left the corporate world and stopped being politically correct. Her style of comedy is very diverse and adaptable to all environments. Nola J has clean material to an adult-oriented crowd and has performed in a variety of venues around the nation.
Tickets are $8 presale and $12 on the day of the show. They are available at the JSBA Box Office, 319 W. Third St. in Jamestown, by phone at 484-2624 or at jamestownarena.com.
For more information search for “Jamestown Savings Bank Arena” on Facebook and follow on Twitter for event updates and special offers.
Infinity Open Mic Featuring GLEE! Is Friday: The Infinity Cafe will host Infinity GLEE!, a singing and dancing show, on Friday from 7-9 p.m.
The group will perform songs from the Broadway musicals “Mary Poppins” and “Annie.” The rest of the show will be an open-mic session for Infinity students to showcase what they have been working on in their lessons and on their own. Community members are also welcome to play, but keep all performances family-friendly. Those who wish to play can sign up with Sarah Marchitelli in advance or at the sound booth on the night of the show.
First Fridays At Five To Celebrate Downtown North East: An art walk, sidewalk sale, live music, roving performers and family entertainment is scheduled for Friday from 5-8 p.m. in downtown North East.
Downtown businesses will be open late and working with local artisans to create an open-air market along Main and Lake streets, Routes 20 and 89. And, tents in Gibson Park will house entertainment and activities for the whole family.
There will be a music tent with live musical performances scheduled by Todd’s Musical Petting Zoo. Todd Crowley’s Musical Petting Zoo, based in North East, is a fully interactive, hands-on exhibition for musicians, young and old, novice to professional.
The North East Arts Council will host a children’s activity tent. This event will have hoop dancing for the kids, with artisan and hoop teacher Rachel Spellman.
Pet painter Patti McCord Kalosky will be in the Artisan Demonstration Tent. Dave Dennis of Lake Country Bike will be touring downtown North East on his historic penny-farthing bicycle. And, roaming the downtown North East streets will be a rambling juggler, hoop dancer, chalk artist, face painter and more. There will also be games such as giant chess, giant checkers and backstreet bridge in the alley across from the Boston Bean Cafe.
A Jazz Tribute To Benefit Girls Undergoing Medical Treatment Is Set For Friday And Saturday: On Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Spire Theater of Jamestown “New York, New York!” will take the stage to benefit 4-year-old kidney transplant patient Rosie Thrasher-Miller and 26-year-old double lung transplant patient Elisha Kulpa.
The event will be presented by Shannon’s Kids Series in conjunction with Big Time Productions. The jazz tribute concert brings together regional entertainers to perform Sinatra classics, cabaret, fosse style dance numbers and comedy routines. According to Shannon Nixon, executive producer, guest appearances include radio personality Matt Warren, Willow Bay Theater owner Kira Spencer and Chautauqua’s Got Talent winner Teal Weatherly.
The event will be the second production staged through the Shannon’s Kids Series Program, which is a theatrical project dedicated to raising funds for local children undergoing medical treatment. Tickets are $10 presale and $12 at the door. Presale tickets can be reserved by calling 708-8879. The Spire Theater is located at 317 E. Third St. in Jamestown.
Lakewood Memorial Library Fourth Grader Art Show On Display: Jack White, a Southwestern Elementary School fourth grader, has a display of his art at Lakewood Memorial Library.
White has enjoyed art since a young age and currently creates with charcoal, pastels and oil paints. He works under the direction of Douglas Geiger, who is also a Lakewood resident. The display focuses on his art from 2012-13. The art show will run through April.
The Lakewood Memorial Library is located at 12 W. Summit St. in Lakewood. For more information call 763-6234 or visit www.cclslib.org/lakewood.
To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email email@example.com or call 487-1111 ext. 253 by Monday.
Blue Grass Jam: 7-10 p.m., Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron. Area bluegrass musicians are welcome to sit in and play.
Brian Hanna: 6-9 p.m., The Wine Cellar, 309 N. Main St. in Jamestown.
Sam Hyman: 8-11 p.m., Pine Junction, 9757 Bailey Hill Road in Sherman.
Howard Buck And The Rustic Ramblers: 8 p.m. to midnight, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron.
Day Old Soup: 8 p.m. to midnight, The Bellini Lounge, Chautauqua Suites, 215 W. Lake Road (Route 394) in Mayville.
Pressure Sensitive: 9 p.m., Murdock’s, 104 E. Main St. in Sherman.
The Saloonatics: 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., Peek ‘n Peak, 1405 Olde Road in Findley Lake.
Brian Chase: 9 p.m. to 12 a.m., Steener’s Pub, 322 Route 430 in Greenhurst.