It Is Time To Celebrate Vibrant Area Arts Scene

Welcome back.

This is the space that I will now occupy in the future. I used to work here at The Post-Journal before. Some of you may remember me. Some of you may not. I wrote a column about music. I loved it because I was allowed to interact with and learn from many people.

I loved interviewing celebrity musicians because I was curious about how they wrote music, and I was curious how they presented their songs to their bands. Also, I reviewed music sent to me by record companies. I loved interviewing local musicians just starting out. Most of the bands were cover bands, but mixed in with the cover songs were original songs. My rule that I followed was if a band had only one original song or 20 original songs, I would interview its members because they were brave enough to let others hear their music.

It’s not easy putting your work in front of others.

Maybe the songs won’t be liked or maybe the songs will. But that is part of the excitement because if one doesn’t present his material, then one will never know how good or not his material is.

So, this column will not only be about music as this column once was, but this column will also celebrate the arts. Arts are in the eye of the beholder, and whether it is music, sculpture, painting, drawing, fiction writing, poetry, playwriting, or photography, I would like to know about it. I am sure there art forms that I have missed, but I am sure you will let me know which ones, and I appreciate that because I can learn about that form of art.

In my new role as the Entertainment Editor at The P-J I want readers to know what a vibrant art scene Jamestown and the rest of Chautauqua County has. Sometimes local artists and musicians venture out from their roots here and travel to spread their joy, and peddle their wares to communities craving their wares.

In my role I will be writing about events that are here. And there are a lot of events that people can enjoy. I won’t be able to write about every event because that would be impossible. I can’t be everywhere at once, and sometimes more than one event happens at the same time. I am not going to say that I’m only going write about important events because to the event organizer(s), every event is important. Even though I have written reviews in the past, rarely will a review occupy this space. Reviews can be positive or negative, but reviews are an honest attempt at assessing what happened at a performance. I would rather focus on the preview, and let the audience make its own decision about a performance.

So, yes there will be some stories that I will not report on. Rather, I am going to focus on writing about what I can. I like learning about one’s craft.

After all, it’s not easy to bear one’s soul on a stage.

Most of the area musicians and artists are, maybe, fulfilling a dream or passion while holding down a full-time job. It’s a balancing act, and they should be commended.

So in my role, I don’t want to be a negative gatekeeper — although some people in the public will see it that way — but more of a positive gatekeeper, who is looking to help show this community, county and surrounding area, the arts in a new way.

I look forward to your comments and ideas.

716-488-1111, ext. 258.