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“Canalside Live” Summer Concert Series

Canalside has announced the line-up for its Summer Concert Series. This year, the concerts are no longer free. Instead they are a nominal cost – $5 ticket fee. Canalside notes that the fee will enhance the concert experience for attendees.

“In our continued commitment to our community and to Canalside, Canalside Management Group (CMG) determined that a $5 ticket price would allow us to dramatically improve the concert experience for our visitors,” said Jon Dandes, President of Be Our Guest, Ltd/CMG. “We listened to the community’s feedback and agreed with survey respondents that the introduction of the admission charge—along with accessibility to pre-sale tickets—will help put the focus of these concerts back on the music and our beautiful waterfront.”

The new fee structure will allow CMG to offer:

  • Enhanced food and beverage options inside the venue
  • Better crowd control with pre-sale tickets
  • Improvements to parking and traffic patterns before and after the concerts
  • Extra security measures will help to provide a more controlled environment

Anyone who purchases a pre-sale ticket is allowed one complimentary beverage, to offset the cost of the $5 ticket. Also, the United Way will be given a number of free tickets to each concert. The organization will then help to distribute those tickets, as part of the Canalside Cares Program. 

Aside from offering pre-sale tickets, there will also be VIP ticketing available. VIP tickets (cost of $35) will provide attendees 21-years-of-age or older with a private entrance into a VIP Tent, two complimentary drink coupons, (good for beer, wine, soda, or water), light appetizers provided by The Dish at Canalside, private bathrooms, an up close viewing experience and a souvenir 2017 “Canalside Live” Cup.

Tickets will be available online and at Consumer Beverages locations. “The ease of purchasing a ticket at any Consumer Beverages location will provide concert goers the opportunity to guarantee their space at each show throughout the concert season,” continued LaSota.

Following is the Thursday, 5pm “Canalside Live”concert series line-up, along with one special Friday night show:

  • Thursday, June 15 – Gary Clark Jr.
  • Thursday, June 22 – Sheila E.
  • Friday, June 30 – The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and The Strictly Hip performing music by The Tragically Hip, presented by Consulate General of Canada and Labatt USA
  • Thursday, July 6 – The Tea Party
  • Thursday, July 13 – Ghostface Killah with Slick Rick
  • Thursday, July 20 – Eric Paslay
  • Thursday, July 27 – Theory of a Dead Man
  • Thursday, August 3 – Dark Star Orchestra
  • Thursday, August 10 – Robert Randolph and the Family Band
  • Thursday, August 17 – USS

“We’re really excited about the 2017 “Canalside Live” lineup since there’s a little bit of something for everyone with this variety of acts,” said Matt LaSota, Canalside’s General Manager. “Our goal was to offer quality acts each week and to provide an opportunity for people with interests in all genres of music to enjoy a “Canalside Live” concert in a safe and comfortable environment.”

“Live music and Canalside is the right combination for a perfect summer night of fun,” said Robert Gioia, ECHDC Chairman. “We look forward to once again seeing thousands of smiling fans dancing at the waterfront.”

Exclusive pre-sale offer for Canalside Connect members starting May 19 at 10 am through May 26 at 10 am. The offer includes $5 off a VIP ticket purchase, online only. VIP Tickets can be purchased on

Tickets for all shows go on sale May, 26 at 10 a.m. Tickets are available on, or at all 17 Western New York Consumer’s Beverage locations, and at the Information Kiosk located on the Boardwalk at Canalside. All tickets purchased at Consumers and at the Boardwalk include a complimentary beverage coupon, for redemption at the concert.

Written by Buffalo Rising

Buffalo Rising

Sometimes the authors at Buffalo Rising work on collaborative efforts in order to cover various events and stories. These posts can not be attributed to one single author, as it is a combined effort. Often times a formation of a post gets started by one writer and passed along to one or more writers before completion. At times there are author attributions at the end of one of these posts. Other times, “Buffalo Rising” is simply offered up as the creator of the article. In either case, the writing is original to Buffalo Rising.

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  • eagercolin

    These concerts are supposed to be public amenities.

    • G Orty

      LOL! A $5 ticket fee (including a free drink) doesn’t change anything. Go ask your mom for more allowance money if you so rely on others to subsidize your habits.

      • eagercolin

        Yes, we know — you’re stupid.

        • G Orty

          LOLOLOLOLOL! …says the guy who thinks public amenities have to be free XD You crack me up, bro.

        • Farras09

          $5 is still very cheap for most of these bands and you get a free drink with a ticket. As it is stated above, the majority of the cost is still subsidized by the public. They also came to this conclusion after running surveys which implies to me that many responded that they would prefer to pay a small amount for increased amenities at the concerts.

    • J G

      Are they not subsidized from a majority standpoint by the public? There you go.

  • Ivan Putski Jr

    not a fan of this year’s lineup but they should charge more than $5…maybe $10 would be good. need to weed out the riff raff.

    • ShiftySixx

      I think it’s just because it’s such a diverse lineup; trying to get something for every music fan in the area probably. Gary Clark Jr. is pretty amazing, Robert Randolph is good too.

  • Sabres00

    I generally don’t mind tribute bands, especially if they are from an era that’s long past, however I cannot get behind the Strictly Hip.

  • Sheldon S. Kornpett, D.D.S.

    Moose Flaherty will be attending the Dark Star Orchestra show on August 3, 2017. Everything else on this list sucks.

    • OldFirstWard

      I’m looking forward to see Dark Star too. Every time they play at the Town Ballroom I can never make it. I’m curious to hear how they sound. Though I wish the Dead & Company would come back around again.

  • breckenridge

    While Canalside is a larger and more scenic venue, I miss the days when it was at Lafayette Square. The lineups seemed much better, and the shows ran from May to September.

    I think the $5 admission is a good idea given recent issues. Looking forward to Gary Clark Jr.

    • OldFirstWard

      That’s partly because many of the members of the classic acts are dying off, too old, or no longer playing with original members. I’m glad they moved it before the drunks and delinquents destroyed the monument and desecrated the history.

      I hear that those in charge are considering moving it entirely to the Outer Harbor. I think that would be a big mistake except when booking a major band requires more space. I think it’s very good for the area to keep shows at Canalside.

      • They should NOT continue to have concerts at Canalside. It will only perpetuate the false notion that it’s just a watering hole and gathering lawn for concerts and Zumba classes, when most of us that read this website realize that was never the intention.

        The Outer Harbor is large, spacious, easy to get to, and can easily allow all of the above. That’s where they should be once it gets redeveloped. If done right, even the smaller concerts will not be out of place, because it’ll be an intimate setting.

        Ideally, every parcel at Canalside should get a building put on it as it were originally intended (and existed historically), but I’m sure there’ll be “public backlash” from people who believe that the way it is now is the way it was meant to be.

        • OldFirstWard

          They are planning to construct buildings, just not where you want them. Concerts are a very good public event for Canalside. It brings people down there in the thousands. Once more amenities come online, there will be more to do. Canalside is intimate. There is nothing intimate about being farmed out to the Outer Harbor outpost. It’s dead boring out there. You need to look at the micro picture. Canalside needs events and foot traffic to be a legitimate destination. The food, restaurants, and bars all all within walking distance. The Outer Harbor is just weeds and seagulls.

          • That’s not where I want buildings, that’s where they used to be historically and where they are in the ECHDC plans.


            Also, looking at the “micro” picture is what keeps the ECHDC spinning in the mud. The bigger picture is making Canalside a place that embraces the past while offering amenities, attractions, restaurants and shops for the future. World-class tourist destination that Buffalo has never had.

    • TV62

      I agree. The Lafayette Square days were outstanding.

  • Definitely minor league cover bands. I would expect anything major, but I haven’t heard of any of these people on the list and I like everything from smooth jazz, country and classical to hiphop, rock and EDM.

    • Josh Robinson

      Gary Clark Jr. may not be well known, but he is very far from a “minor league cover band.”

    • Matt Marcinkiewicz

      the first and the last are the best IMO…I have been a fan of Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker (aka USS) for years

    • Matt Marcinkiewicz

      I also like seeing jam bands live, so Dark Star Orchestra should be a good time. The rest are skippable/fine for background for just hanging out there with friends

  • QueeNia AsheeMaat

    It’s a shame I won’t be able to INJOY any of these concerts this year because I have plus 2…$15 every week is out of my budget during the summer since I’m laid off every summer as a school bus driver.

    • MikeSoBo

      It is spelled ENJOY.

      • QueeNia AsheeMaat

        Thanks Einstein! I intentionally capitalize it.. it’s a play on the 2 words I’ve blended. We experience “joy” when we participate “in” events!

        All the spell checkers please Carry on with your day…

        All other Comments that actually speak to how families of 4 (plus Children’s friends that usually come along) can attend Community events that charge even a nominal fee – are welcome!


        • Kristen Thomas

          Since when is a public concert supposed to cater to families with children? Raffi isn’t on the schedule for a reason, and dare I say the $5 per head entrance fee is to help ameliorate the problem of unnecessary crowding at this space due to all the ‘extra’ bodies that don’t really need to be there. Nothing against you, or families that want to drag their kids to events that they have no real business being at, but I have sworn off these Canalside concerts precisely because the experience is total sh*t because I’m tripping over toddlers or high schoolers running amok. Half the crowd at these shows don’t even care about who is up on the stage, and for those of us who do, it’s a real pain in the ass. I say make it $10 a head.

        • Johnny Pizza

          “that actually speak to how families of 4 (plus Children’s friends that usually come along) can attend Community events that charge even a nominal fee – are welcome!”
          – Get another job
          – Ask your children’s friend’s parents to pay for their ticket
          – Eat before you go with a cheaper option
          – Tell your kids that unfortunately you cannot afford to go every week, perhaps select certain shows to attend (the favorites)
          – Forego another expense to make room in your budget for the concert
          – Don’t park as close, save by parking further and taking the free section of train down to the event.

          • Matt Marcinkiewicz

            Say what you will about the wisdom of doing so, but whenever I go to these concerts, I park the next block over from the projects on Chicago Street–no Lagerhaus 95 lot $3 parking fee there! If the locals want to dig through the enduring collection of books and empty beer cans that can be found in my typically unlocked 2003 Corolla, they’re welcome to