2011 Fall Music Preview
Announcements for fall concerts were still trickling in as we went to press, but here’s what’s currently catching my eye at several key venues in the area. This is by no means an exhaustive list; rest assured that some of the most exciting shows of the year will be announced mere minutes after this issue heads to the printer. Even so, the last three months of 2011 already promise enough Broadway belters, dancefloor shakers, indie up-and-comers, and reunited faves from bygone eras to keep you very, very busy.
Tralf Music Hall
(622 Main St., www.tralfmusichall.com)
Renaissance, Tuesday, September 13: The seventies British folk/prog cult favorites reunite to perform their albums Turn of the Cards and Scheherazade and Other Stories.
Bruce Cockburn, Monday, September 26: This titan of the Canadian music scene has four decades of touring and songwriting under his belt, so expect a solid evening of political and personal observation.
Adrian Belew Power Trio, Wednesday, October 5: This virtuoso of the electric guitar made his name with Zappa, Bowie, the expanded Talking Heads, and the reconstituted King Crimson in the late seventies and early eighties.
Junior Boys, Saturday, October 15: The Hamilton electronic duo has built an international following over the last half-decade on the strength of some coolly seductive material in the vein of MGMT and Phoenix.
Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel
(310 Fourth St., Niagara Falls, www.senecaniagaracasino.com)
Soul Asylum, Friday, September 2 in the Bear’s Den: Nineties revival, anyone?
The Zombies, Saturday, September 10 in the Bear’s Den: There are those who suggest that these guys would be considered the best band of their day if those darned Beatles hadn’t existed. Key members Colin Blumstone and Rod Argent are joining forces for a fiftieth—ulp!—anniversary tour.
Liza Minnelli, Friday, September 30 in the Events Center: The woman’s a living legend, and as her CFA show a while back demonstrated, she’s as dynamic as ever in concert.
(681 Main St., www.townballroom.com)
Cut Copy, Thursday, September 15: Clearly these Australian lads have spent a lot of time poring over someone’s collection of eighties synthpop albums, but judging from the buzz they’ve garnered, what they’ve done with those influences is reaching a whole new generation.
Skrillex, Monday, October 10: Former hardcore frontman Sonny Moore has evolved into one of the hottest remixers around, with work for such diverse acts as Lady Gaga, Snoop Dogg, Robyn, Bruno Mars, and Rob Zombie; on his own he’s signed to Deadmau5’s label and helping to revive interest in what was once (if reluctantly) called “electronica.” Expect a mob scene.
Minus the Bear, Thursday, October 13: The masters of wacky song titles are one of many acts in this list to indulge the current fad of playing past albums in their entirety. This time it’s their debut, Highly Refined Pirates, in honor of its tenth anniversary, so get ready to yell out requests for “Thanks for the Game of Crisco Twister” and “Hey, Wanna Throw Up?”
Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
(Kleinhans Music Hall, www.bpo.org)
Idina Menzel, Saturday, September 17: Having originated iconic roles in two of the biggest musicals in recent times—Rent and Wicked—the big-voiced actor has gained an even larger audience thanks to her recurring role on Glee. (In her case, one-word titles rule.)
John Pizzarelli, Saturday, October 1: In what sounds like a brilliant pairing, the dapper jazz vocalist joins the BPO for an evening of songs by Buffalo native Harold Arlen.
UB’s Center for the Arts
(UB Amherst Campus, www.ubcfa.org)
k. d. lang & the Siss Boom Bang, Tuesday, September 27: The lower-cased chanteuse needs no introduction, but you’ll want to show up early for opener Teddy Thompson, son of (and backing musician for) rock royalty Richard and Linda Thompson, with five highly regarded solo albums of his own.
Yo Gabba Gabba Live!, Tuesday, October 4: You don’t actually need kids to enjoy the hippest/coolest kids’ show since Pee Wee’s glory days. Rapper Biz Markie and singing bedazzled-sweater-collector Leslie Hall join DJ Lance Rock, Brobee, Foofa, and the rest of the gang in the touring version.
Keb’ Mo’, Sunday, October 2, and Bela Fleck & the Flecktones, Thursday, November 3: Save four bucks if you buy tickets to both of these long-established blues/rootsy acts at the same time.
(341 Delaware Ave., www.babevillebuffalo.com)
Tapes ’n Tapes, Wednesday, September 21 in the Ninth Ward: These peppy Minnesota indie rockers have a WNY connection in the form of superstar producer Dave Fridmann of Fredonia, and a devoted batch of fans worldwide.
Yuck, Tuesday, September 27 in the Ninth Ward: This young quartet (whose members hail from Britain, Japan, and New Jersey) was one of the most drooled-over bands from this year’s SXSW, thanks to their uncanny ability to channel the sound, attitude, and energy of Sonic Youth and other bands popular when they were toddlers.
George Winston, Sunday, October 30 in Asbury Hall: The king of Windham Hill makes a rare live appearance in a setting that seems tailor made for him.
Ramsi P. Tick Concert Series
Making its home once again in the Flickinger Performing Arts Center at Nichols School, the long-running chamber music series is a subscription-only affair; you can either buy one ticket to each of the four concerts ($150), or a bundle of four to distribute however you please ($175). Most of the events take place next year, but now’s the time to purchase your Ramsi Tick-ets. (Forgive me.)
Pianist Joyce Yang, Friday, September 23
Les Violons du Roy, Saturday, February 4, 2012
Pianist Richard Goode, Friday, March 2
Winner of the XIV International Tchaikovsky Violin Competition, Thursday, March 22.