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Not many musicians can say that, at one time, enrollment in their fan club exceeded numbers claimed by either Elvis Presley or the Beatles. Yes, the 1970s were dynamite for David Cassidy. But for the former prime time pin-up - who'll roll his “Partridge Family” fame and fleet of chart-topping favorites into the Riviera Theatre (67 Webster St., North Tonawanda) for an 8 p.…

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Lou Gramm, the Rochester native whose lead vocals powered such hits as "Hot Blooded" and "Urgent" for the band Foreigner, is making a habit of spending time in Niagara County. The Lockport Town Planning Board this week approved a special use permit for a daylong concert to be headlined by Gramm at Spring Lake Winery in Lockport. The event is scheduled for June 18. Gramm …

Music

Todd Rundgren apparently likes the crowd at the Riviera Theatre. And vice versa. According to the folks at historic North Tonawanda venue, “popular demand” from fans who either caught his last show there and wanted more, or missed it and demanded a do-over, is the impetus behind their booking a return trip. “An Evening with Todd Rundgren” has been confirmed for the Riv at…

Family

Rainbow Roller Rink in North Tonawanda may be the best deal in town. I’ve taken my kids to Rainbow Rink many times over the years. It is always fun, clean and high energy. The music is pumping, kids and adults are skating ‘round and ‘round, having a ball. It’s just a little too busy to bring little ones, though. It’s a bit dark, loud and fast for them. So, I was intrigued…

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This past summer’s Rolling Stones show at Ralph Wilson was tremendous, but it wasn’t without points to critique. Tickets were expensive. Track selections were “Sticky Fingers”-focused and, for many, stadium seating kept Jagger and Co. at a binoculars-necessary distance.These are a few things that “Satisfaction: The International Rolling Stones Experience” will alleviate wh…

Gusto

With the late-summer sun still shining, saxophonist Kenny G and band played the first of two shows in the Riviera Theatre and Performing Arts Center on Friday night. The venue was about three-quarters full with couples and families. The second, at 8 o’clock, was sold out.He was touring in support of “Brazilian Nights,” his 14th studio album – a tribute to bossa nova, the …

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Seeing Kenny G live can be an unforgettable experience. There are still those who remember his spectacular entrance more than a decade ago at what is now First Niagara Center. The arena filled with cheers as he walked through the crowd, holding one note forever and ever and ever.“All right, Kenny!” a woman yelled.“He’s gonna take it to the stage!” marveled another guy. You…

Food and Drink

Until a recent burst of new restaurant investment, North Tonawanda didn’t have much of a reputation as a dining destination, unless your definition of dining stops at pizza, wings and fish fries.Then the Remington Tavern opened, the Dockside Bar & Grill expanded, and Webster’s Bistro replaced Nestor’s, a restaurant that specialized in hot dogs. The result is a delicious di…

Gusto

Lou Gramm, archetypal belting rock ’n roll vocalist, performed at Gratwick Park alongside the mighty Niagara, on Friday night – part of the popular Rockin’ On The River concert series there. It was a night dominated by a glinting blue moon, raucous sing-alongs, and the clanging of well-positioned cowbell parts.The singer, a Rochester native, is a regular guy without an ost…

Music

Though ominous skies might have reduced the audience size at the second installment of the Rockin’ on the River concert series, North Tonawanda’s Gratwick Riverside Park still welcomed a crowd of thousands Friday night for four spirited sets of music headlined by SOJA – the hottest reggae band in America. As SOJA discovered, most in the crowd seemed to be from Buffalo – a …

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The Dockside Bar & Grill reopened alongside the Erie Canal in North Tonawanda this spring, having added a two-story addition, 100 seats, and an overhauled kitchen. There are so many people coming to the new place, and the established Remington Tavern across the street, that on a fine summer evening last week I had to sweat finding a parking spot in downtown North Tona…

Music

Arlington, Va., may be an unlikely breeding ground for music made to “Chant Down Babylon,” but such is the case of America’s hottest reggae band, SOJA, short for Soldiers of Jah Army. On Friday, the band returns to Western New York to headline the second installment of the Rockin’ on the River free concert series at picturesque Gratwick Riverside Park (1300 River Road, Nor…

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Billy Corgan, folk troubadour? Doesn’t really work on paper.However, when Corgan kicked off a tour billed as “The Smashing Pumpkins – In Plainsong: Acoustic-Electro” at a sold-out Riviera Theatre in North Tonawanda on Monday, he made believers out of many in attendance. Others seemed to be longing for something else, however. They chatted and cat-called and generally behav…

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Not many people would attach the word “conventional” to Smashing Pumpkins’ founder Billy Corgan. After leading one of the ’90s most essential acts, he’s passed his time by becoming a prolific Twitter personality; taking a full-time producer and talent development job with TNA wrestling; and moving past his influential band’s original lineup to insert all new players under …

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Dockside Bar & Grill in North Tonawanda, expanded, enclosed and extensively retrofitted, welcomed customers back to its canalside site at 153 Sweeney St. Monday night. The menu from Chef Dunbar Berdine, redesigned after the kitchen was expanded, now includes a buttermilk fried chicken dinner ($18) and seafood steam pots of clams and chorizo ($13), snow crab legs ($24)…