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Jeff Miers

The News' music critic since 2002, Jeff Miers also compiles the "90 Minutes" series where he highlights things to do in various Western New York neighborhoods. Miers co-hosts the monthly Gusto Vinyl Happy Hour at the Sportsmen's Tavern.


The huge tour bus towered over the tiny club. Inside, band members giggled: Posters promoting the show plastered on the club walls had misspelled the band's name in an accidentally humorous fashion. The show was a last-minute addition to the band's tour -- not much promotion had been done -- and the crowd, 30 minutes before show time, gave every appearance of being a rathe…

In one of the more exciting co-headlining tours in recent memory, Zwan and Queens of the Stone Age share a bill next Friday inside Alumni Arena on the University at Buffalo's North Campus, Amherst.Zwan is the brainchild of former Smashing Pumpkins mastermind Billy Corgan. Queens is perhaps the most exciting heavy rock band of the past five years or so. Together, these band…

REVIEWWHAT: Bon Jovi and the Goo Goo DollsWHEN: Thursday nightWHERE: HSBC Arena Is it better to be an unhappy man or a happy pig?The philosopher John Stuart Mill, considered the father of the theory of utilitarianism, posed this question in the latter half of the 19th century. "If it makes people feel good, then it is good" is one way to dumb down Mill's philosophy. It'…

Though the Trews originally hails from Antigonish, Nova Scotia, the band now calls Niagara Falls, Ont., home. The move has apparently paid off -- the buzz on the Trews is huge, from Toronto to Western New York.Of course, it doesn't hurt that Big Sugar axman/leader Gordie Johnson is your producer; in fact, many have compared the Trews' visceral attack in the concert setting…

Two of the summer's biggest rock festivals -- WEDG 103.3's annual Edgefest and the Warped Tour, an all-day punk-fest produced by Clear Channel Entertainment -- will leave behind their traditional homes this summer.Edgefest, which has been held at La Salle Park, will make the jump to Dunn Tire Park for its May 30 performance."It's our 10th year," said WEDG program director …

There's no pretense at a Veil show.The band, led by vocalist and frontwoman extraordinaire Johnnie Cambridge, takes the stage clad head to toe in black. Cambridge tosses off an irreverent insult, more often than not directed at the crowd. Guitarist Stephen Perry and bassist Greg Fink plug in. Veteran drummer Bill Moore slouches behind the kit and counts off the first tune.…

In a comeback sweep that rivals the late-'80s commercial renaissance of Aerosmith, New Jersey's Bon Jovi has managed to reinvent itself for a whole new generation of listeners without straying from the formula that made it one of the biggest bands of that decade."Bounce," the band's latest, is platinum and rising. The band's current tour with the Goo Goo Dolls, which comes…

It's hard to believe that this year's event will mark the 15th anniversary of Michael Meldrum and the Buffalo Song Project's Bob Dylan Imitators Contest. It seems like only yesterday that Meldrum, a Dylan fan of the first order, assembled a handful of willing victims to take the Nietzsche's stage in an attempt to both pay homage to and have a little fun with the idiosyncra…

"This is radio clash on pirate satellite/orbiting your living room, cashing in the bill of rights." -- the Clash, "This is Radio Clash"Tom Morello is bald. The kind of bald that doesn't happen on its own. The sort that is the result of an act of will; a statement, in fact, a sort of tattoo, branding himself as one outside of the system.Standing at the podium at the Waldorf…

REVIEWWHO: Tori AmosWHEN: Thursday nightWHERE: Shea's Performing Arts Center "Scarlet's Walk" led Tori Amos through Buffalo on Thursday night.She stopped awhile, sang some songs, touched some hearts, and was back on her way, straight toward some mythical America only she and a select few others believe actually exists. After last night's show, count this writer among th…

Most of us spend our lives in the town we call home, venturing out only for yearly vacations, pilgrimages to our ancestors' lands or jaunts to Disney World. It's hard to get a feeling for the country, living this way.Musicians tour. It's part of the gig. Inevitably along the way, they meet people. People from various walks of life, of different ethnicities, political persu…

Elton John fans are a passionate, devoted bunch.I found this out the hard way when, following my less than favorable review of John's performance last Sunday on a bill he shared with Billy Joel in HSBC Arena, literally hundreds of letters flooded my e-mail and dozens of phone calls jammed my voice mail.Only a few readers who attended the concert agreed with my assessment o…

EvolveAni DiFrancoRighteous Babe RecordsRating: *** 1/2 stars (Out of four) Well, we always assumed she had it in her.Though she carved her reputation as an aggressive folk artist, a brave woman armed only with a big voice, an acoustic guitar and a passionate ideology, Ani DiFranco is also a producer and arranger of no slight talent."Evolve," out today on DiFranco's ow…

Packed. Folks from all walks of life. No pungent smell in the air. Plenty of leather, but of the fashionable sort, not the biker or "hard rock guy on a weekend bender" sort.Last evening's Billy Joel and Elton John "Face to Face" performance smacked of the sort of politeness that, according to many of rock's finest critics, signified the death of rock 'n' roll in the mid to…

Billy Joel and Elton John probably won't be releasing new studio albums anytime soon. In the meantime, here's my recommendations for essential listening from both artists.Joel: "The Stranger," 1977 (Columbia). This remains Billy Joel's masterpiece, an album of remarkably varied, timeless pop music."The Nylon Curtain," 1982 (Columbia). Perhaps Joel's bravest album, this…