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City to honor late music icon Lance Diamond

WBFO file photo

You might say that late local music legend Lance Diamond is getting his own "way" on Elmwood Avenue.

The Common Council has unanimously approved a resolution to install a “Lance Diamond Way” sign outside the lounge where his popular band entertained thousands of people over the decades.

“We’re working alongside Lance Diamond’s family, his wife, the mayor’s office to place a trailblazing sign on the corner of Elmwood and West Utica,” said Niagara Council Member David Rivera, who sponsored the resolution.

“Mr. Lance Diamond was an icon in the musical and cultural community -- more so than most people understand and know, the lawmaker added during a Tuesday Council meeting.

Assuming Mayor Byron W. Brown approves the plan, a sign dedication ceremony is expected to be held early this summer.

At the behest of Diamond’s widow, the event might be held on July 4th, commemorating what would have been the singer's 71st birthday.

Council President Darius Pridgen, who also serves as pastor of True Bethel Baptist Church, reflected on a tribute to Diamond that was held at Kleinhans Music Hall shortly after his death.

"They had him dressed in his famous, one of his famous “Loud Suits” and the night before they had him laid out and it was an honor to do his eulogy.”

Lance Diamond was a fixture in the Western New York music scene for four decades. Besides performing at the former Elmwood Lounge, now Milkie’s, his group, the 24 Karat Diamond Band, could be found at clubs and many special events throughout the region.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Thomas moved to Western New York at the age of 14. A graduate of Buffalo State College, he majored in Communications Studies and was part of the sports staff for WBNY. When not following his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats and Boston Red Sox, Thomas enjoys coaching youth basketball, reading Tolkien novels and seeing live music.
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