Niagara Gazette

October 3, 2013

Bear's Den, Rapid's Theatre where the action is this week

By Thom Jennings
Night & Day

Night & Day — This weekend features some great shows right here in Niagara County at The Bear’s Den and The Rapids Theatre, and an interesting show across the border along with a couple interesting groups coming to Buffalo.

We will start at the Bear’s Den, who will be hosting a pair of great shows starting on Friday with JD Souther. If you don’t know his name, you know many of the songs he either wrote or co-wrote, including a slew of Eagles hits like “Heartache Tonight,” “New Kid in Town” and “Victim of Love.”

Souther also wrote songs recorded by Linda Ronstadt, Brooks & Dunn, Jimmy Buffett, Bonnie Raitt and The Dixie Chicks. As a solo artist, he had a hit with the song “You’re Only Lonely.”

Souther is an important figure in modern music, having been an integral part of the 1970s California music scene that included The Eagles, Ronstadt, and Jackson Browne, whose music heavily influenced modern country music. He was also a member of the country rock supergroup, the Souther Hillman Furay Band (Richie Furay played The Bear’s Den last month).

On Saturday at The Bear’s Den, former John Mayall & the Bluesbreaker’s guitarist Coco Montoya will be headlining. The left-handed blues guitarist is well known by guitarists, and was taught by The Ice Man, Albert Collins. Of course John Mayall is known for picking some great guitarists, some of his former players include Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Mick Taylor.

Montoya has established himself as a solo artist over the past 15 years. I last saw him perform with Mayall in the mid-1980s and his was a memorable performance. With tickets starting at $25 you can’t go wrong with this show.

Tickets for both shows are available through Ticketmaster and at the Seneca Niagara Casino box office.

Over at The Rapid’s Theatre on Sunday will be two great Canadian bands, Billy Talent and Hollerado.

Billy Talent comes from nearby Mississauga, Ont., and has released four albums, including their latest Dead Silence in 2012. They have a huge following overseas, and thanks to our proximity to the Canadian border we get great bands like Billy Talent in an intimate venue like The Rapids.

If you haven’t heard them, they sound like a melodic version of Green Day. They have a big sound with some powerful hooks.

As for Hollerado, check out their official video for “Americanarama” which is on YouTube, it is great. I have written about seeing them in 2012 in Lockport, they are an excellent live band.

On Wednesday at The Rapids they are hosting a powerful group of bands including Five Finger Death Punch and Escape the Fate. The Los Angeles-based band sometimes known as 5FDP packs quite a musical punch. The metal will be heavy to say the least!

Tickets for Rapids Theatre shows are available through Ticketfly or at The Rapids box office.

Other interesting shows in the area include Cash Cab host Ben Bailey who will be performing stand up at the UB Center of the Arts on Friday, and at the same venue on Wednesday, UB will host Herbie Hancock. If you like hip-hop, Big Boi will be at The Tralf tonight and the country folk band Blitzen Trapper will be at The Tralf on Friday. If you are looking for a great tribute band, The Riviera in North Tonawanda will be hosting Who’s Bad-The Ultimate Michael Jackson tribute.

Finally, your show on a tank of gas this week is a no-brainer, Nine Inch Nails will be at Air Canada on Friday and in Cleveland on Saturday. It looks like that is as close as they are going to get to the region so if you want to catch them live those are your options.

Thom Jennings covers the local music scene for Night and Day.