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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

SARGENT: 22 Blessed and Scared 2 Death

All WNY News     Tuesday, September 19, 2017    

The link posted here will really be my first public outing since the passing our our son, and although I was asked to do several interviews with local news stations, I declined simply because I could tell my story but who in reality would give a damn. Sure friends and family would, and a few strangers would be supportive, but the general population would simply see this as just another news story.  

I could say I found a way to be more productive but that would be a lie. A way found me. Enter  Scared 2 Death. I was contacted by the brains of this program, and lets just say I bought in. My message was best served telling others with problems, like my son, the reality of what the future could hold for them and what the effects of these actions have done to the people who loved them most. 

So without a bunch of useless words from a talking head, here is the story on the Scared 2 Death project.



Thanks all for the read. 




Today's forecast: Partly sunny with a high near 79

All WNY News     Tuesday, September 19, 2017    

The National Weather Service calls for a slight chance of showers this afternoon. Otherwise, it will be partly sunny with a high near 79 and an overnight low around 63.

Wednesday looks to be mostly sunny with a high near 79 and a low around 63. Thursday will likewise be sunny with a high near 82 and a low around 61. Friday will be sunny, with a high near 83 and a low around 61.

Saturday will be sunny with a high near 83 and a low around 64. Sunday calls for sun with a high near 83 and a low around 64. Monday will be sunny with a high near 82.

Monday, September 18, 2017

PODCAST: Here's the Thing for Sept. 18, 2017

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

Scott discusses the most pressing news of the day ... including magpie attacks in Australia and squirrel attacks here in the U.S.

Like the show? Hate the show? Let Scott know on Twitter: @scottleffler.

PODCAST: Cory Comments On ... Cheeseburger Day

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

Cory doesn't want to talk about the Bills. He'd rather talk about cheeseburgers. Really, can you blame him?

GURNETT: Internet reacts to Conor Oberst Buffalo show

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

Conor Oberst (aka Bright Eyes) has received a mixture of anger and concern over his concert at Babeville on September 14th. The singer/songwriter was clearly under the influence of something. For Oberst, this is hardly anything new. (A slew of reviews of recent concerts mention him being in a similar state.). But this night, the level of disconnect between Oberst and reality was the worst it’s been. He forgot song lyrics, slurred his words, spent extended amounts of time tuning, and then abruptly left the stage without finishing his set list.

Concertgoers have taken to Twitter and Reddit to talk about what happened. Some are angry, others worried, and some wonder if they’ve seen Conor Oberst for the last time.

From af213
I feel like there aren't many reviews in this sub, but tonight's show was b-a-d. I've seen Conor 15 times in the past 13 years. I've seen great shows and mediocre shows. Tonight he forgot entire verses of songs, relying on an audience member for the lyrics, stopped another song in the middle and re-tuned, stumbled off the side of the stage 2 songs before the encore (which would have been 3 songs) and then the house lights came up. The band looked really pissed as the show went on.
I consider myself a superfan but this was majorly disappointing and sad. Has anyone else been seeing him perform this poorly lately?

From Havaroth:

Last night's show was painful to see, I felt bad for him and the rest of the band. You could tell the band was trying to pull him across the finish line for that set. I hope everything is ok. I don't know what was wrong but the pain that was there felt terrible to see. If it was any other artist playing I think that crowd would have turned ugly.

I noticed the lead guitarist was watching his tuning like a hawk when he stopped the song and tuned. The last three songs, the guy on keys/accordion looks embarrassed/worried because he just kept looking at Conor. He started out great but you could see him getting drunker as the show went on. I could not relax because I was just purely worried about him. And then after the show I thought, when do we stop being fans and start being concerned for the individual in a situation like that. I just wanted to hug him and let him vent for the rest of the set.

Things didn’t look any better on Twitter.

No one knows for sure yet what happened. It could have been a bad night. It could have been booze, it could have been drugs, or it could be indicative of something else. Oberst has begun cancelling his upcoming concerts. Hopefully, he can get whatever help he needs and get back on the road when he’s ready.

Ryan Gurnett has a B.S. in Music Industry from The College of St Rose. He has worked as a studio engineer, live sound engineer, producer and sound editor and has been a musician for 25 years. He is currently the bassist for The Lady, or the Tiger?. Email him at or find him on Twitter @SirWilliamIdol.

LOOKING AT MOVIES: David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii (2017)

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

During his "Rattle That Lock" tour in 2016, David Gilmour decided to revisit the amphitheater in Pompeii where his band Pink Floyd made a promotional film in 1971. The film lives on as a cult classic, and Gilmour decided to commemorate his return with a new motion picture from the Pompeii amphitheater. The catch with David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii is that it only played in theaters for one day. While the blu-ray will be available later in September, this was definitely a movie that was made to be seen on the big screen.

As a full disclaimer, yes I am an avid David Gilmour fan. He is the reason I play guitar, and he is also the reason I love performing live. I have been a Pink Floyd fan since I was eight years old, and the music never gets old. When it comes to stage productions, Roger Waters was always the one who pushed the boundaries of live performance art, while David has always been fixated on the music. Roger's most recent tour proved that he still likes to innovate live performance art, but David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii shows that David is starting to warm up to the idea of an elaborate stage show as well.

A good review of a concert movie has two parts; a review of the movie part, and a review of the actual performance. As a movie, David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii was incredibly impressive. It starts with some behind-the-scenes stuff and an interview with David. I love the guy to death, but David Gilmour has always been a boring interview. True to form, his interview in his new movie is pretty boring and does not really add very much to the overall production. The sound engineering for this film was immaculate and allowed every nuance of the music to be heard, while the editing and cinematography worked well together to create a movie that is genuinely fun to watch.

Gilmour used the entire amphitheater for his performance; which means he had lighting effects and fireworks placed throughout the entire venue. The audience was confined to only the floor of the venue, but the lights dancing around the exterior of the theater causing it to change colors in time with the music was a lot of fun to watch. The drone shots from way above the theater created scenes I had never seen before in any concert movie, and they added a lot of appreciation for just how significant the concerts were.

The original show consisted of 23 songs, but nine songs were removed to keep the motion picture under two hours. I'm not really sure why, but the missing songs have an impact on the quality of the overall show. There is a flow to any show by Roger Waters or David Gilmour, and leaving out songs interrupts that flow. If you are not someone who is captivated by Gilmour playing guitar, then the beginning of the show will drag for you. But for fans of Gilmour and Pink Floyd, the intimate camera angles give us looks at a Gilmour show that we have never seen before. I was entranced from the moment the performance started, and I stayed that way until it ended.

David Gilmour is known throughout the world of musicians as the master of great guitar tone. In David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii, his tone and performance do not disappoint. The only part of the show that I was not thoroughly impressed with was "Great Gig in the Sky." Gilmour allowed his backing singers to arrange the piece, and I felt it went on too long. While I loved hearing a male voice perform in "Great Gig," I felt like it was being dragged out unnecessarily. Aside from that, the performance was flawless.

If you did not see the worldwide premier of David Gilmour: Live at Pompeii, then you missed your chance to see it on the big screen. I am hoping for more behind-the-scenes footage in the blu-ray and I am assuming we will get to see the nine songs that were missing from the original release. But no matter how packed the blu-ray will be with footage and fun stuff, you really missed something if you did not see this movie on the big screen.

Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5

George N Root III is a movie and music fanatic. Follow him on Twitter @georgenroot3, or send him a message at

This review was originally published on Niagara's Water Cooler. Republished with permission. 

Rochester woman sentenced for stealing VA benefits

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

ROCHESTER -- Acting U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Lisa Benincasa, 54, of Rochester, who was convicted of theft of government monies, was sentenced by U.S. Magistrate Judge Marian W. Payson to 75 days in prison followed by four months at a residential reentry center. The defendant was also ordered to pay restitution of $6,472.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John J. Field, who handled the case, stated that Benincasa stole Veterans Affairs benefits belonging to a deceased individual. The defendant lived with, and provided care to, the VA beneficiary while the beneficiary was still alive. After the beneficiary died, instead of notifying the VA of her death, Benincasa kept and forged the monthly VA benefit checks. In total, the defendant stole approximately $6,472 in benefits over a two-year period.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General, Criminal Investigations Division, under the direction of Donna L. Neves.

Texas man pleads guilty to cocaine charge

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

BUFFALO -- Mark Ramos, 31, of San Antonio, Texas, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and distribution of, more than 500 grams of cocaine before U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of five years in prison, a maximum of 40 years, and a fine of $5,000,000.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura A. Higgins, who is handling the case, stated that between May 2016 and June 1, 2016, the defendant conspired with co-defendants Jabriel Crews, Charles Gonzalez, and others, to take delivery of cocaine sent through the U.S. mail, and to distribute it in the Buffalo area.

On June 1, 2016, Ramos drove a rented vehicle to the parking lot of a retail store in Cheektowaga, and parked next to a car driven by Charles Gonzalez. After a brief meeting in Gonzalez’s vehicle, Gonzalez removed a package containing cocaine from the trunk and gave it to the defendant, who then placed in the trunk of his vehicle. Upon executing a search warrant on the vehicle, officers recovered two bricks of cocaine inside of a U.S. postal parcel addressed to Charles Gonzalez.

Charles Gonzalez was charged and convicted in state court. Federal charges are pending against Jabriel Crews. The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

The plea is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Division, and the Erie County Sheriff’s Department, under the direction of Timothy Howard.

Sentencing is scheduled for January.

Lockport man charged with heroin death

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

BUFFALO -- A federal grand jury has returned and indictment charging Pablo Lugo III, 22, of Lockport, with distribution of fentanyl causing death. The charge carries a mandatory minimum penalty of 20 years in prison and a maximum of life.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan A. Tokash, who is handling the case, stated that according to the indictment, on March 28, 2015, the defendant provided heroin to a 22-year-old female victim, which resulted in her death.

Acting U.S. Attorney Kennedy noted that, “[e]arlier this week, Attorney General Sessions stated that, ‘The first and most important job of any government is to protect the safety and the rights of its citizens. The first civil right is to be alive.’"  Kennedy continued, “[s]adly, the consumption of opioids is robbing many individuals of that first and most important civil right—the right to live—at an alarming rate. Today’s indictment is a reminder that this Office will continue to do all that it can to protect the lives and rights of all of our citizens, including those that struggle with addiction.”

DEA Special Agent-in-Charge James Hunt stated, “This arrest sends a warning to both the drug dealer and drug users. Drug traffickers are reminded that enhanced charging penalties apply if an overdose death results from their illegal drug sales. And users are forewarned that today’s heroin harbors highly potent opioids that can cause instantaneous death.”

The defendant made an initial appearance this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder and is being held pending a detention hearing.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge James J. Hunt, New York Field Division; the Niagara County Drug Enforcement Task Force, under the direction of Sheriff James Voutour; and the Lockport Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael Niethe.

The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Today's forecast: Mostly sunny with a high near 80

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

The National Weather Service calls for mostly sunny skies today with a high near 80. There's a slight chance of showers overnight with a low around 65.

Tuesday offers a slight chance of showers and patchy fog giving way to partly sunny skies with a high near 80 and a low around 62. Wednesday will be mostly sunny with a high near 78 and a low around 62. Thursday: Sunny with a high near 81 and a low around 64.

Friday will be sunny with a high near 81 and a low around 65. Saturday looks to be sunny with a high near 80 and a low around 64. Sunday: Sunny with a high near 79.

HEaRD in WNY: Shows for Sept. 21 - 27

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

This week's featured show is the Amplify 4.0 (Indoor Electronic Music Festival).

Buffalo Rage Community & SE² Silent Disco present Amplify 4.0 "The Indoor Electronic Music Festival" this Saturday, September 23rd at the Dnipro Ukrainian Cultural Center. Boasting 3 floors of electronic music, 5 rooms, 4 sound stages, 3 silent disco stages, professional lighting & sound production, along with live artists, vendors, and UV & themed decoration.

The huge line up for the evening includes Bentz, Buzzy Trillington, Local Heroes, Rufus Gibson, Rönin, Al Polanski, Alex Morrison, Bad Hombres, BANDO, Broken Ocean, BUDZKI, Buffalo Joe, Catlikethief, cURe, Delano, Deztination, DJ KWALL, DJ Reidmix, EcHo, eFFeX, Fe'netiks, Jeanie, Jiggz, Jillie Hutch, JVZZY B2B Yung Morty, Kitz, M45 B2B Brian Longmire, Marshall, Maxiavelli, MIOSI B2B GREG SPICE, Mr. Fink, MVRBLES, Myke Maz, N3wT, N8trixx, Nate Mannix, PR!ME, PSYSLIM, qwelis, Redubulous, REZI, RPG, Saeger, Salamander Ray, SAV, Scafetta, Tommy Trillfiger B2B Stacks, Travis Poling, Wavy Jones, & Yedo

Doors open at 7 p.m. for this 18 or older event, tickets available for $25 at the door or you can save a few bucks buying presale through Eventbrite.

/// Other shows ///

Greg Burt is a Concert Promoter/Sound Guy/Music Supporter/Keyboardist/etc. He can be reached at For the full FTMP show calendar, visit

Gas prices finally level out

All WNY News     Monday, September 18, 2017    

The price of gasoline has finally stopped climbing locally, as well as across the country.

According to AAA of Western and Central New York, the price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in both Buffalo and Rochester is down a penny this week, to $2.75 and $2.76 respectively.
That's below the state average of $2.81 (down 2 cents from a week ago) but above the national average of $2.62 (which is down 5 cents from a week ago).

After the devastation caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma shut out a quarter of the U.S. refining capacity and contributed to a tightening of gasoline supplies, gas prices have begun to slide downward. As restoration and recovery efforts continue, the decline in the national average can be attributed to more refineries returning to pre-storm efforts and ongoing efforts to increase availability of fuel through barge shipments and loosened regulations on gasoline.

The southeastern U.S.’s gasoline supplies were constrained by Hurricane Irma’s impact fuel delivery systems – particularly in Florida. However, the situation appears to have stabilized, as Florida’s state average for unleaded gasoline has held steady at $2.72 for most of the week. Prices are likely to remain high in the coming weeks, but drivers in the state and around the country should start see prices decrease as the fall driving season kicks off.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Canisius golf closes out weekend trip to Ithaca

All WNY News     Sunday, September 17, 2017    

Canisius sophomores David Hanes and Jaret Chipman each posted scores of 74 as the Golden Griffin golf team closed out its first weekend of the 2017-18 season at the Cornell Invitational at the Robert Trent Jones Gold Course in Ithaca, N.Y. As a team, the Griffs posted a three-round score of 926 to finish 16th in the field.

Hanes' 74 on Sunday allowed him to post a three-round score of 222, which placed him in a tie for 33rd overall. That score of 222 for a 54-hole event equals his career-best effort in a three-round tournament after the Elma, N.Y., native shot 222 in three rounds last spring at the 2017 MAAC Golf Championship. Chipman's round of 74 on Sunday gave him a three-round score of 229, which placed him in a tie for 65th in the tournament, while also producing a new career-low for a 54-hole event.

Temple won the team title with a score of 855, while Yale's James Nicholas birdied the 18th hole to win individual medalist honors with his three-round tally of 209, which was four-under par for the tournament.

Canisius will return to action Saturday, Sept. 23, when the Blue and Gold meets local-rival Niagara in a dual match. Action at Transit Valley Country Club will start at 2 p.m.

Canisius volleyball cruises past Saint Peter’s to earn first MAAC victory

All WNY News     Sunday, September 17, 2017    


The Canisius volleyball team had three players with nine-or-more kills, as the Golden Griffins cruised to their first Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference victory of the season, 3-0 (25-10, 25-14, 25-23), in Jersey City, N.J. With the win the Blue and Gold improved to 3-9 on the season, and 1-1 in conference action, while Saint Peter's dropped to 0-12 and 0-2 in MAAC play.
Canisius opened up the match with convincing, first and second set wins, 25-11 and 25-14, to stake claim to an early 2-0 lead headed into intermission.
Saint Peter's pushed back in the third frame, erasing an early one point deficit and scoring five-straight points, taking an 11-8 lead midway through the set. The Griffs answered the run with three straight points of their own thanks to a Peacocks' service error and kills from Leah Simmons and Claire Leonardknotting things up 11-11.
With the score tied 20-20, later in the frame, Canisius buckeled down and outscored Saint Peter's 5-3 down the stretch, including the match-clinching point out of a Peacock's timeout with the score 24-23, to earn the set win 25-23 and the match victory, 3-0.
Leonard paced the team once again, earning her seventh double-figure kill match, with 10. However, the Blue and Gold spread the offense around as Sara Wesley and Andrea Diaz Lopez both tallied nine kills. Both Wesley and Diaz Lopez had the team's best hitting percentage with marks of .615 and .467, respectively.
Cassidy Ceriani once again commanded the Griffs attack, leading the way in both assists (35) and digs (15). The double-double is the third-straight and sixth overall this season.
Sofia Lopez Acosta and Donnett Hickson also had double-digit digs, with 13 and 12, respectively.
"Today we put an emphasis on team defense," head coach Lenika Vazquez said. "We focused on being controlled and consistent. We dug deep and worked together for that win. It was nice to see our team hold onto the third set as well because Saint Peter's could taste the set victory. Conference play is going to be very competitive this year."'
• With the victory, Canisius is now 32-12 all-time against Saint Peter's.
• The Griffs have now won 15-straight games against the Peacocks and are 15-1 in the last sixteen contests.
• Leonard has notched 10-or-more kills in seven of 12 matches in her freshman season.
• Ceriani tallied her third-straight double-double on Sunday, and has notched six total.
The Blue and Gold now settle in for a four-match home stand, beginning with a pair of matches next weekend at the Koessler Athletic Center. Canisius hosts Siena on Saturday, Sept. 23 and Marist on Sunday, Sept. 24. Both matches begin at 1 p.m.

NU women’s tennis places five finalists at Daemen Invitational

All WNY News     Sunday, September 17, 2017    

AMHERST -- In the season-opening invitational, the Purple Eagles women's tennis had five singles finalists and one doubles finalist at the Daemen Invitational from September 15-17.

Invitational Summary
  • Five Purple Eagles reached their respective flights final.
  • Stella Peisakhova defeated Allegheny's Gaby DeLeon, 6-3, 6-2 and Roberts Wesleyan's Nthabi Mogopodi, 6-1, 6-4, in the Red flight. Peisakhova fell to Colgate's Lauren Hyland in the final.
  • Andreea Peteu won her first two matches as a Purple Eagle before losing in the final of the Orange flight.
  • In the Yellow flight, Shannon Wong had two straight sets wins before being edged by Colgate's Lauren O'Brien, 7-6, 7-5.
  • Ali Hutchinson advanced to the Green flight final after wins over Millersville's Kelley Hershey, 6-2, 6-1, and Daemen's Christina Stasiuk, 6-2, 5-7, 1-0. Hutchinson lost to Colgate's Jordan Williams in the final.
  • Sharlee Deshmukh cruised to the Indigo flight final before falling to Kelly Klein from Colgate.
  • Freshman Alexandra Whitney won her first career match when she defeated Daemen's MacKenzie Robbins, 8-0.

  • The tandem of Ali Hutchinson and Andreea Peteu advanced to the US Open flight championship match. The pair defeated teams from Daemen (8-5) and Roberts Wesleyan (8-2). The duo fell to Colgate's MacKenzie Deeter and Lauren O'Brien, 8-3.
  • Shannon Wong and Sharlee Deshmukh won their first doubles match against Millersville's Katina Jones and Corinee Grohoski, 8-6. The duo fell in the semifinals to Colgate's Lauren Hyland and Jordan Williams.
  • The team of Stella Peisakhova and Jasmin Vargas went 1-1.

Up Next
  • Niagara will host Walsh on campus on Oct. 1 at 10 a.m.

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