Our readers pick the best concerts of 2013


Share with others:


Print Email Read Later

Last week, we ran the Post-Gazette's Top 10 concerts, topped by Pearl Jam.

This week, we asked the readers via Facebook to weigh in on best concerts and best concert moments.

You'll probably recognize some Pittsburgh musicians among the names below:

Chip DiMonick: This year's Carnival of Madness really raised the bar for package tours. Usually, you get a great headliner or maybe two great bands and have to sit through three or four crappy openers for these types of shows. Not Carnival 2013! Every band (Shinedown, Skillet, Papa Roach, In This Moment, We As Human) was amazing. When In This Moment is the fourth band from the top, you know it's an incredible bill!

Chris Fafalios: Drake at Consol was my favorite concert this year. We got a box for it to watch the show in style, and it ended up being my friends and I and about 10 Steelers. I sat next to Isaac Redman. I think he got cut two days later.

Brian Nac: The huge reaction when Steve Winwood stood up to play guitar for the first time during his set. The audience seemed to all of a sudden remember that the dude playing keys was who they came to see.

Richard Victoria: Diarrhea Planet at Brillobox Pittsburgh and Jeff Mangum at Carnegie Music Hall were the two best shows that I saw this year. Ezra Furman at Club Cafe was probably right up there as well. Also loved Rah Rah's first show at The Smiling Moose. The Dead Milkmen at an overly jammed Altar Bar were great as well.

Jim Dunn: I finally got to see Ben Sheppard from Soundgarden have a meltdown in person at Stage AE back in May. The 16-year-old grunge boy inside of me was very pleased.

Sam Zets: Zappa Plays Zappa at Homestead. The entire show was fantastic. Dweezil Zappa was the consummate professional, working the band on the nuances of getting it right with plenty of give-and-take exchanges that only hinted at how good the actual show would be.

Chris Fletcher: Peter Case at Club Cafe. In addition to his solo work, he pulled out songs from his days with The Nerves and The Plimsouls.

Paul Carosi: I was very impressed with Steve Hackett's Genesis Revisited at the Carnegie Music Hall of Homestead. It was a treat to hear a band of very accomplished instrumentalists play complex progressive rock classics. Steve Winwood show at the Carnegie Oakland was another chance to hear accomplished musicians lay down a strong groove.

Greg Fleming: I only attended a handful of shows this year, but Wiz Khalifa at First Niagara was something else. One of the best shows that I have ever attended.

Barry Merenstein: Fleetwood Mac. I was afraid they were going to sound old. I shouldn't fear age. Like my wife, they have aged beautifully and sounded great!

Ben Alper: John Mayer delivered the goods as he always does, albeit in a different way this time, channeling his inner-Garcia. The show was worth the price of admission alone for the beautiful work done on pedal steel by a man whose name escapes me.

Beth Marciniak Sheedy: Taking my 13-year-old daughter to her first concert, Taylor Swift. The show was wholesome. The crowd was behaved. Wonderful first time experience for a mother and daughter!

Tracie Stufft: Cage the Elephant (opened for Muse) was quite fun, especially Matt Shultz's antics and part-Mick-Jagger-part-Thom-Yorke style. And in the small-venue/big-sound category, I really enjoyed Sleigh Bells (Mr. Smalls) and The Pretty Reckless (Club-Stage AE).

Joe Tarowsky: Brian Wilson and band at Stage AE this past summer. Al Jardine and David Marks were on board. There was something really special about hearing all the classics (and some essential deep cuts) from the Beach Boys catalog on a warm summer night, under a pretty moon and with the city skyline all lit up past the stage.

Maggie Graham: Tegan and Sara and fun. outside at Stage AE during that nasty hot streak in July was an incredible show. Both bands still gave it their all, and the crowd connected with that. It was a great experience.

Craig Biertempfel: Jerry Garcia Symphonic Celebration featuring Warren Haynes and Pittsburgh Symphony in June. ... it was fantastic to have Pittsburgh selected as one of only a few cities where this concert took place. An incredible venue in dahntahn Pittsburgh was filled with Deadheads, and it didn't take long for everyone to break free of their assigned seats and set Heinz Hall into motion. The symphony was a perfect complement to the night's festivities, and hats off to the staff at Heinz Hall who let down their hair and allowed a beautiful collection of people celebrate the life and music of Jerry Garcia in peace and have a really good time.

Jon Gelsdorf: Graham Nash: a rare solo tour (promoting his new book "Wild Tales: A Rock and Roll Life," highly recommended). Mr. Nash played two sets, mixing in songs from throughout his career from the Hollies, CSN and solo work including some new material. In splendid voice, he was backed by Shane Fontaine on guitar and James Raymond on keyboards. And, yes, he can still hit all of the notes! An outstanding show at the Carnegie Music Hall in Munhall.

Renata Seneca: Frank Turner and the Sleeping Souls this summer at Mr. Smalls was a life-changing show. Frank is a captivating and dynamic frontman, and his band is one of the tightest I've seen in ages. The setlist was perfect, and the crowd was intermittently laughing, crying and dancing; as with each song, we got taken on a ride through his ingenious lyrics and the band's intensely engaging sound.

Justin Gardensalad: Frank Turner at Mr. Smalls back in June. His speech during the closing song, "Photosynthesis." He totally gets what music is all about. Checking your problems at the door and coming to a show with hundreds of strangers/new best friends.

Gabe Rosenberg: Belle & Sebastian at Stage AE in July. They brought over a dozen musicians with them for their first time in Pittsburgh, and Stuart Murdoch was the perfect frontman. Plus the Pirates were winning over at PNC Park at the same time, so the entire band played "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" while the baseball stadium set off its fireworks in the background.

Jeff Becker: The Joy Formidable at Stage AE in April. The whole show was great, and the encore was three people making as much noise as they could with the crowd totally into it.

Jessica Bruce: Fall Out Boy at Stage AE with my 14-year-old. Had no idea the kid could rock out like he did. Got to teach him how to "stand your ground" at a concert. And realized that I like Fall Out Boy. Much better than seeing them in an arena-type venue, too.

Mike Filippino: If you were lucky enough to attend the Il Volo concert you heard the most angelic concert the Steel City ever produced. Standing ovations after EVERY song. The crowd was electric, and Il Volo dominated the evening.

Crystal Alfonsi: A tie between Jason Grilli coming out on stage with Pearl Jam at the height of the Pirates Fever and the show that Bruno Mars put on that was so polished and entertaining!

Andy Sheehan: Flaming Lips with the weirdos from Tobacco.

Ben Soltesz: As far as big shows go, Jason Grilli rocking out on stage with Pearl Jam put a big smile on my face.

Hugh Twyman: Greg Dutton and Liz Adams performing a delicate and beautifully understated "Fainting Goats" for me at a very loud and mostly unattentive crowd at The Park House will rank as one of my favorite concert moments of my life, let alone 2013.

Rich Kienzle: John Pizzarelli Quartet at MCG.

Bill Miller: A.T.S. with Josh [Arnson] at Howlers and Grand Piano there second.

Gregg Kostelich: Savages at Mr. Smalls is the first thing that comes to my mind.

Michael Kastelic: Night Beats at Brillobox and Paint Fumes Howlers Coyote Cafe.

Caulen Book: Hard to single one out, but Rapple Dapple and Toilet Duck at Zagnut House was the best show I've seen in years.

Sam Matthews: Nik Turner's Space Ritual at Brillobox was a vivid re-creation of the only era of Hawkwind I care about. Nik is 74 and played a 90-minute set.


Join the conversation:

Commenting policy | How to report abuse
To report inappropriate comments, abuse and/or repeat offenders, please send an email to socialmedia@post-gazette.com and include a link to the article and a copy of the comment. Your report will be reviewed in a timely manner. Thank you.
Commenting policy | How to report abuse

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

You have 2 remaining free articles this month

Try unlimited digital access

If you are an existing subscriber,
link your account for free access. Start here

You’ve reached the limit of free articles this month.

To continue unlimited reading

If you are an existing subscriber,
link your account for free access. Start here