Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Two Good Guys Gone

The Buffalo music community lost two good people recently; Mike Bannister died a few weeks ago and John Dieckman died over the weekend.
Bannister was a fine drummer and even better person who was born and grew up in the Buffalo suburb of Hamburg; he was friends and played with Peter Case, Gurf Morlix, Jim Whitford and Mark Winsick, among others, before move out first to Texas. Indeed, Bannister introduced Gurf to Lucinda Williams while he played drums for her. He was a very nice, friendly and funny guy who I first met one morning when he was staying next door with Whitford during a visit back home that included a gig with Case. He was just sitting on Whitford's front stairs, smoking and first said hello to Val, who he previously knew.
Dieckman was best known for his steel guitar playing with the Steam Donkeys, Rex Hobart and the Wrecks, Stone Country and Ed Bentley, and for his warm, friendly personality. When I first met him, it was not through music (although I had heard him play live at that point), but as a math professor for Val. Not a major math fan, Val noted that not only did she earn good grades from Dieckman, but she learned math from him.
Rest in peace, gentlemen.


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