Nothing Better

2003 was a big year for me. I graduated from high school, and I discovered The Postal Service.

It was a time when I believed the world was mine to conquer, and a time when every one of life’s questions could be answered via music. It was a time when I was listening, almost religiously, to a guy named Ben Gibbard spew out words of wisdom to the beats of Dntel’s Jimmy Tamborello.

“Nothing Better,” a tune off the duo’s first full-length album, “Give Up,” became the soundtrack to every breakup. That was mostly thanks to the lyrics: “Will someone please call a surgeon, who can crack my ribs and repair this broken heart that you’re deserting for better company.” It was also a song I never thought I’d hear live because the duo stopped touring as I transitioned into college life. And, although at the time it tore me up inside, I eventually got over it. But, The Postal Service has reformed, and are now on tour to promote the release of a 10-year-anniversary edition of “Give Up.” And, I won’t be able to see the duo perform because almost every single show is sold out.

Regardless of whether I get to see the duo perform live, the fact that Gibbard and Tamborello are working together again is very good news. It is especially good news because the new release features 15 bonus tracks, two of which are new tunes. “A Tattered Line of String” and “Turn Around” are the new tracks – and they are incredibly well done.

One of the things I’ve enjoyed the most about Gibbard’s artform is his lyrical style. And, both of the new tunes are representative of the exceptional level of talent Gibbard exudes. “Turn Around” is consistent with Gibbard’s poetic lyrical style, but also brings an updated Tamborello sound. I’ll leave you with the intro to the tune, which states: “Cold hands, warm heart, big dreams, false starts, those pills, don’t work, they just, make it worse.”

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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 fourth week of the Wits n’ Giggles: Friday Night Comedy Series. This week’s edition of Wits n’ Giggles will feature co-headliners Matt Wohlfarth and David Michael.

Wohlfarth offers more than 20 years of stand-up, having performed all over in clubs, cruise ships and theaters in the U.S. and Canada. Wohlfarth is also an established screenwriter and playwright. He’s been featured at the Funny Bone, the Improv, the Laugh Factory and many more clubs throughout the U.S.

Also featured will be comedian and writer Michael, who started his comedy career at the age of 20. He has performed on radio, television, in premier clubs, at colleges and corporate events across the country. He is a regular at Funny Bone Comedy Clubs nationwide and the Improv Comedy Club.

The show will take place in the upstairs Arena Club from 6-9 p.m. 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 For more information search for “Jamestown Savings Bank Arena” on Facebook and follow on Twitter for event updates and special offers.

IOBY-Live Performance Is Tuesday: IOBY-Live in April will features Jackson Rohm, Barbara Jean and the Tiger Maple String Band. The audience will be seated by 6:30 for the 7 p.m. show.

Seating for the event is limited, and reservations are required. Reservations may be made by calling 665-4490 or by emailing

Trinity Guitars is located at 800 W. Third St. in Jamestown. For more information search for “In Our Back Yard – Live!” on Facebook.

3rd On 3rd Gallery To Present New Exhibit: “Comfort Zones: Places Of Joy and Solitude,” will open with a public reception on Friday at 6 p.m.

“Comfort Zones” will showcase the art of Audrey Kay Dowling. The show features landscapes and land features through oils, mixed media and claywork. Dowling, the artist and proprietor of Portage Hill Gallery, spent her early years in acres of woods bordering Bemus Creek.

The opening reception will include food and beverages. A $5 charge helps cover gallery costs and will support other Arts Council programming. Children under 18 are free.

Gallery viewing hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is no charge to view the gallery during these days and times. Private viewings are available by calling 664-2465, ext. 227.

3rd On 3rd Gallery is located at 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown.

Unitarian Universalist Congregation To Present Music Salon Series Sunday: Mna’ Tri’ will perform at the Music Salon Series at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 1255 Prendergast Ave. in Jamestown at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

Mna’ Tri’ consists of Ann Mead on flute, Victoria Hanson on cello and Joan Eighmey on Piano. Mead has a master’s degree in music education from SUNY Fredonia, Vicki Hanson has a bachelor’s degree in cello from Duquesne University and Joan Eighmey has a master’s degree in piano performance and literature from the Eastman School of Music. Mna’ Tri’ will perform The Harp of the Dagda by James Sclater, retired professor of composition at Mississippi College, a piece the trio commissioned.

Admission is free, but donations are accepted. For more information call 664-6778.

JCC Faculty Recitals Are Sunday: Jamestown Community College will present faculty recitals in the Scharmann Theatre at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

The program opens with performances by Ralph Rasmusson, tenor saxophone; Bill Eckstrom, guitar; Carol Svensen, piano; Spencer Drake, bass; Basil Gedz, drums; and Michael F. Kelly, baritone.

Curt Barnes, on clarinet, and Svensen, piano and vocals, will also perform. They will be followed by Richard Lundquist on euphonium and Rasmusson. Then pianist Cathy Gagliano will perform. She will be followed by Eckstrom on guitar. Brian A. Bogey, who serves as the recital’s accompanist, will then play piano. And, he will be followed by tenor James Beal.

The program will conclude with folk and gospel selections by Eckstrom and the Blue Lizard Trio and several Beatles songs, performed by Oh, The Humanities, which consists of Steve Gustafson and Eckstrom, guitar; Colin Shafer, piano; Colin Braeger, bass; and Bob Volpe, drums.

White Swan Ballroom To Present Live Entertainment: The Crystals and the Shades of Blue will perform at the White Swan Ballroom on Saturday, April 27, at 8 p.m.

The first set of the show will feature the Shades of Blue, which will perform an hour of dance music. After a 30-minute intermission, the Crystals will take the stage and perform for an hour and 15 minutes. The dance floor will be available for use.

Tickets are available by calling Chuck Stroud at 814-489-3492. To find the White Swan Ballroom from Jamestown, drive to Sugar Grove, Pa., take Route 957 west to Lottsville, Pa., and make a left onto Route 958. Take 958 south for 3 miles, and the venue will be on the left. The drive from Sugar Grove to Wrightsville is approximately 9 miles. The address is 900 Route 958 in Wrightsville.


To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email 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.


Bad Monkey: 9 p.m., Murdock’s, 104 E. Main St. in Sherman.


Jamestown Thunder Community Drum Circle: Noon to 2:30 p.m., Lillian Ney Renaissance Center, 119 W. Third St. in Jamestown. Extra drums are available and all are welcome.

Razz And Friends Big Band: 8 p.m. to midnight, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron.

Claire Stuczynski: 8-11 p.m., Pine Junction, 9757 Bailey Hill Road in Sherman.

Kris Meekins: 9 p.m. to midnight, Steener’s Pub, 322 Route 430 in Greenhurst.

Zephyr Band: 8 p.m. to midnight, Bellini Lounge, Chautauqua Suites, 215 W. Lake Road (Route 394) in Mayville.