- June 16th, 2015
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One of the things I love about my day job is the occasional travel. This past week I found myself in Rochester, NY, a very nice town I will write about later. Since Rochester is close to Buffalo, NY, I decided to make the trip and see if I could find and visit the headquarters of Righteous Babe Records. Just in case you do not know what I’m talking about, Righteous Babe Records is the independent record label started by Ani DiFranco in the 90’s. Since I heard “Little Plastic Castle” in the 90’s I have been a fan of Ani and have seen her perform many times. I could not pass up the opportunity to visit the town her and Billy Sheehan (hence the title “Ladies’ night in Buffalo”) came up in.
I was traveling with a co-worker on this trip and he was willing to make the trip so we set out for Buffalo and an hour and a half later we were in front of “Babeville” the former church that Ani saved, restored, and converted into a concert hall, a small club, an art gallery, and the home to Righteous Babe Records. Bryan (my co-worker) turned to me and asked “now what?”. I responded with “I have no idea”, so we got out of the car and wandered into the old Church. We found a sign that said Righteous Babe was on the second floor so we headed that way and apparently wandered right into their offices. We were greeted by a very nice young lady by the name of Ashley (at least I think that was her name) who offered to give us a full tour of the facility. We jumped at the chance!
It was great to see all the architecture of that old church and to see how they repurposed the space while preserving its history and beauty at the same time. I think my favorite part of the space was the small 130 person space in the basement. It would be a great place to see a small show and the mosaic art done by an intern was really cool. On the way out I asked Ashley what the best guitar shop in town was as well as a good place to get wings (the buffalo wing was invented here, so there has to a be a good place nearby). Ashley pointed us in the direction of Allentown Music and The Anchor bar. First, guitars then food.
Allentown Music in this region of New York as it was set in an old house and every square inch was used to house an instrument or an accessory. That included guitars hanging from the ceiling. It was a very eclectic inventory with a little bit of everything. Great selection of guitars, but not much in the way of effects. I did pick up a used DOD Grunge pedal while I was there however. Next up, Anchor Bar!
So while in Buffalo I had to get wings and I wanted to check out the Anchor Bar. Upon walking in I immediately got a vibe that reminded me of the original Quaker Steak and Lube in Sharon, PA. I’m guessing Quaker Steak copied their vibe from here. The wings were everything I had hoped they would be and soon we were headed back to Rochester where another set of adventures was waiting. Tune in next week for the second half!