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Some of Buffalo's finest summer gigs

Buffalo's 10 concerts that should be attended at all costs


Buffalo has an impressive list of concerts coming to the city this summer. More than 120 artists will be travelling through the city and surrounding area this summer. Out of those 120 musicians, it may be hard to prioritize what acts to see, but The Spectrum has you covered.

Here are 10 acts that should be circled in red on your calendar whether for their unique musical talents, crazy live shows or love among the locals:

10. Fitz & the Tantrums – July 10 at Canalside

Free concerts are always alluring, but throw in Fitz & the Tantrums and that’s a winning combination. Their brand of self-described “soul-influenced indie pop” music is at its best during live performances. Fitz & the Tantrums’ are coming to Buffalo for the second year in a row and their fun-loving, playful music is a blast to listen to.

9. Blake Shelton – Aug. 2 at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center

Blake Shelton is one of the most famous country singers today. Since his 2001 debut with his No. 1 country Billboard hit, “Austin,” Shelton has grown both musically and commercially. From his appearances on The Voice to his five Grammy nominations, Shelton is an undeniably talented musician. Country fan or not, this concert will be one to remember.

8. Jackson Browne – Aug. 11 at Artpark

Clyde Jackson Browne is one of the most influential songwriters and musicians to come out of the 1960s. A Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductee, the musician has written and performed songs such as “Take it Easy,” “Doctor My Eyes” and “The Pretender.” He is a legend in the music world and a must see out of respect for one of greatest musicians performing today.

7. Man Man – July 8 at Tralf Music Hall

Experimental rockers Man Man might not be the most well known band, but their live shows are legendary to those have seen them. With instruments ranging from xylophones, marimbas, Chinese funeral horns, smashing plates and fireworks, this show will be an experience and a spectacle.

6. 3 Doors Down – July 23 at Artpark

Here’s a band that brings an air of nostalgia. The band found widespread commercial success in the early 2000s with their hit song, “Kryptonite.” They continued to grow in popularity. In 2005 and 2008, their third and fourth albums peaked at the top of the Billboard charts. The band is one of the most influential rock bands of the early decade and surely worth seeing at Artpark this July.

5. Justin Timberlake – July 9 at the First Niagara Center

After canceling his concert in February due to illness, Justin Timberlake is coming back to Buffalo to please his fans. Timberlake, starting with ‘N Sync, has grown musically into one of the most creative and well known artists in the world, winning nine Grammy Awards. His live shows are grandiose and stunning, fitting of a musician who is hailed as one of the modern era’s great superstars.

4. The Goo Goo Dolls – Aug. 22 at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center

Because this famous band originated in Buffalo, the members of the Goo Goo Dolls go out of their way to include their hometown in their tour at least once every year. They will play at Darien Lake to a crowd that, if history repeats itself, will sing along to every one of the band’s iconic songs. One of the favorite bands of many Buffalo-natives, the Goo Goo Dolls always put on a great show for its passionate fans at home.

3. Lady Gaga – July 7 at the First Niagara Center

Love her or hate her, it’s hard to deny Lady Gaga has a musical edge that sets her apart from other musicians. Her album, The Fame, won a Grammy for best Electronic/Dance album of the year. She is known for her wild, theatric live shows. She walks the line between the spectacular and outlandish.

2. Mac Demarco – July 18 at the Tralf Music Hall

Mac Demarco is an upcoming talent. He is growing in popularity with his slacker rock, easygoing vibes and his propensity for getting butt naked on stage, Mac Demarco was praised by Pitchfork as one of the best upcoming talents, and he will be sure to win over listeners as he struts his stuff in Buffalo. Demarco’s shows are famous for his random rants about life, cigarette breaks and generally enjoyable tomfoolery.

1. Cage the Elephant – July 26th at Canalside (Kerfuffle Festival)

Rolling Stone’s “Reader’s Poll: Best New Artist of 2011” has grown to become one of the leading rock bands today. They are known for hits such as “Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked,” and “Back Against the Wall.” What helps Cage the Elephants stand apart from the rest of the modern day rock bands are the band’s intense live shows.

It will be performing at 107.7 FM’s Kerfuffle festival at Canalside this summer along with Bear Hands, Big Data, Bleachers, Brick + Mortar, KONGOS and Semi Precious Weapons, which should make for one of the best musical events this season.

email: arts@ubspectrum.com


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