Pollstar, the Internet's No. 1 concert information site, has ranked the top 20 free summer concerts for the greater Buffalo area. Artpark has eight of the top 10 spots - each an act performing as part of the "Tuesday in the Park" series.
"With the support of the Town of Lewiston, First Niagara Bank, and all of our other sponsors, Artpark has been able to attract the strongest, most popular lineup of bands for the summer 2010 series in our history," said George Osborne, Artpark & Co. president. "This series, together with our more eclectic ‘Coors Light Wednesday Series,' and our numerous and varied Mainstage shows, have come together to solidify Artpark's position as the premier summer performing arts venue in Western New York."
Osborne said Pollstar's numbers reflect the average box office gross receipts reported during the past 36 months for all performances by these bands.
The rankings list The Doobie Brothers as the top act with an average gross of $182,025. Tears for Fears, performing Aug. 13 at the "Molson Canal Concert Series" in Lockport, is No. 2 with an estimated $112,209. Artpark controls spots three through six, with America ($108,281), Foreigner ($91,864), Creedence Clearwater Revisited ($84,337) and The Guess Who ($79,820).
Gretchen Wilson, headlining July 9 in Lockport, is ranked No. 7 with $78,533. Rounding out the top 10 are Artpark acts Sara Evans ($72,715), Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi ($72,202) and George Thorogood ($69,500).
The top act for Buffalo Place's "Thursday at the Square" is Los Lobos (ranked 14 with $50,573; performing Aug. 5). Hard Rock Café's "Hard Rock at the Falls" has one entry, Soul Asylum (No. 18 with $34,228; on stage July 24).
Fred Heuer, assistant vice president for marketing at Niagara University, said he enjoys "Tuesday in the Park" at Artpark.
"You can't beat the price; it's free," he said. "The bands are great and the venue is great."
Heuer, who books musicians for the Live Music Series at NU, said he's looking forward to the CCR show.
"I hear they're very, very good live," he said.
Stephen Gorney, 16, a worker at Lewiston's High Fidelity record store, said most of the Artpark bands were popular before he was born. Still, "It's a good concert (series); they put up some good shows," he said. "I know a couple bands."
Singer and instrumentalist Tony Petrocelli of Lewiston Music was amazed Artpark could book such an all-star lineup given the venue's reduced state funding.
"I think that says a lot," he said.
"I think it's great because it's extremely well-rounded," Petrocelli said. "It's acts the whole family can go to."
He's looking forward to seeing the Doobies, Little Feat and, "I would say Derek Trucks. Definitely."
"I'm really looking forward to it," Petrocelli said.
Plus, he's looking forward to a few "Tuesday in the Park" drop-ins. In previous years, Chris Isaak and members of the Tragically Hip and Trisha Yearwood's band visited Lewiston Music.
"That's a really cool part of it," he said. "It's a thrill for me."
Artpark & Co. estimates its local economic impact in 2009 was $4,381,500. Staff spent $1,393,920 regionally for services, equipment, supplies and advertising. Approximately 230,000 people attended an event at the Lewiston site last summer.
The remainder of Pollstar's list includes: War (Artpark; No. 11 with $59,508), Kansas (Lockport; No. 12 with $56,200), Three Dog Night (Lockport; No. 13 with $51,058), Ed Kowalczyk of Live (Buffalo; No. 15 with $45,241), Umphrey's McGee (Buffalo; No. 16 with $41,260), G. Love and Special Sauce (Buffalo; No. 17 with $35,072), Blues Traveler (Lockport; No. 19 with $30,353) and Our Lady Peace (Lockport; No. 20 with $28,973).
Pollstar is the only trade publication covering the global concert industry. Wikipedia lists it as "the world's largest resource for international concert tour information."
Concert statistics courtesy of Pollstar.
Artpark's 'Tuesday in the Park' lineup:
Jimmie Vaughan and The Tilt-A-Whirl Band
The Guess Who
Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi Band
Creedence Clearwater Revisited
George Thorogood and The Destroyers
The Machine performs Pink Floyd