September 2022 Concert Guide: Ringo, Elton, Shinedown, Post, Buble’, Styx, and REO

Elton John performing in Skien, Norway in 2009. (Photo: Ernst Vikne and Wikipedia)

Elton John performing in Skien, Norway in 2009. (Photo: Ernst Vikne and Wikipedia)

Wow, what a great month for concerts in Pittsburgh. Do you like big mega acts? We have for you Elton John, Ringo Starr, Post Malone, and Michael Buble’. In the mood for classic rock? May we propose Styx and REO Speedwagon, Blue Öyster Cult, and Little Feat.

Other top performers this month are Shinedown, Goo Goo Dolls, Marcus King, The National, and The Avett Brothers. And for sensational female singers, the legendary Judy Collins will be performing at the Byham and blues rocker Shemekia Copeland is headlining the Highmark Blues and Heritage Festival. For more shows and hometown heroes see our Other Shows of Interest section.

This guide features (in chronological order) spotlighted picks, Other Shows of Interest, and Big Shows on the Horizon. Get out and see what pleases you, whether it’s one of our concerts or something entirely different. Mike Vargo (M.V.) contributed to the guide.

Spotlighted Picks

Thursday, September 1

Multi-Grammy Award-winning vocalist Michael Buble’ takes the stage at PPG Paints Arena tonight. Buble’, a Canadian export whose 2007 album Call Me Irresponsible, rose to the no.1 spot on the Canadian, American, British, Australian and several other album charts, is a popular world-wide performer. His music touches bases in several different genres including pop, jazz, easy listening, and soul. In addition to his three Grammy Awards, Bublé has won eight Juno Awards. His latest album is Higher, released this March, on which he has collaborations with Paul McCartney and Willie Nelson. 8 p.m. 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown. 

Wednesday, September 7

Legendary songstress Judy Collins was a piano prodigy by 13, and as she came of age, she used her music to rail against social and environmental problems. She’s known for reinterpreting traditional and contemporary folk music standards to create rich, insightful, poetic-like songs about life’s ups and downs. Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger influenced her with their use of storytelling through songs about hard-luck people. Collins, in turn, inspired others—Stephen Stills wrote the classic song, “Suite: Judy Blue Eyes,” while breaking up with Collins. Collins’s version of Stephen Sondheim’s “Send in the Clowns” garnered her the Song of the Year Grammy Award in ’76. Collins is touring in support of her 29th studio album, Spellbound, which was released this February. 8 p.m. Byham Theater, 101 6th St., Cultural District. (R.H.)

Friday, September 9

Jacksonville, Florida alt-metal band Shinedown headlines a concert at The Pavilion at Star Lake fresh off the release of their latest LP, Planet Zero, in July. Lead singer Brent Smith’s powerful vocals shine through on the new album and on it’s top song, “Daylight.” The song speaks to the human condition and that we are never truly all alone. The band debuted with 2003’s Leave a Whisper, which was later rereleased to include a popular cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s (also from Jacksonville) “Simple Man.” Shinedown has the Billboard record for the most mainstream rock no. 1 hits ever, and they’ve achieved platinum or gold certification for all their albums. In 2021, for the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart’s 40th Anniversary, Shinedown was ranked no. 1 Greatest of All Time Mainstreams Rock Artists. Opening are Jelly Roll, and John Harvie. 7 p.m. p.m. 665 Rt. 18, Burgettstown. (R.H.)

Shinedown. (Photo: Sanjay Parikh)

Shinedown. (Photo: Sanjay Parikh)

Long before suburban sprawl, Long Island was known for its oyster industry—and then, in the strangest of cosmic convergences, the Island gave birth to Blue Öyster Cult. Donald “Buck Dharma” Roeser, Eric Bloom, and company have been among the heaviest of heavy-metal and genre-busting rockers for more than a generation. Now Roeser and Bloom with the current incarnation of Blue Öyster Cult play Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall. Be prepared for songs including “Godzilla,” “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper,” and an oyster-y feast of many more. This is Blue Öyster Cult’s 50th Anniversary tour. 8 p.m. 510 East 10th Ave., Munhall. (M.V.)

Saturday, September 10

Richard Starkey was born in the Dingle neighborhood of Liverpool, England on July 7, 1940. After growing up as an often sickly child in a poor neighborhood with divorced parents, he once again found himself recovering in a hospital. The hospital encouraged everyone to play in a makeshift band with whatever instruments were available. Young Richard grabbed a soft mallet and started banging on a hospital pan. He found his vocation and would be drumming from then on, even after family and friends gave him other instruments to try. He would become a highly accomplished drummer and joined up with three other Liverpool lads named John, Paul, and George who had a band and were looking for a new drummer. He was by then known as Ringo Starr (he reportedly garnered the nickname because of all the rings he wore. Starr came from his reluctant drum solos which he called starr time).

As we all know the Beatles achieved massive success and Starr had his moments to shine on songs like “Yellow Submarine,” “Octopus’s Garden,” and “With a Little Help From My Friends.” After the break up of the Beatles he went on to solo success with several top ten hits including “It Don’t Come Easy,” “Back Off Boogaloo,” and “Photograph.” Starr always seemed to find good drumming gigs including with the John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, two George Harrison albums and The Concert for Bangladesh, and additionally The Band’s Last Waltz. Readers of Rolling Stone magazine voted Starr as the fifth-greatest drummer of all time in 2011. His latest album, What’s My Name, was released in 2019. His former bandmate, Paul McCartney, contributed to the record. 

Since 1989 Starr has occasionally toured with his own super group of ever-changing musicians, Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band. Members, too numerous to mention, have included his son Zak, Todd Rundgren, Joe Walsh, and Ginger Baker. Not only is Starr a legendary drummer, but also a fun and charismatic personality. He brings his latest iteration of the All-Starr Band to PPG Paints Arena. 7:30 p.m. 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown. (R.H.)

Ringo Starr perfoming with his All-Starr Band in Paris in 2011. photo: Jean Fortunet.

Ringo Starr perfoming with his All-Starr Band in Paris in 2011. (Photo: Jean Fortunet)

Styx is the mythical river in Greek mythology that sets the boundary between Earth and Hades. It’s also the name of a Chicago rock band whose major success was between the chronological boundaries of 1972 and 1984. During that period, the band had four consecutive multi-platinum albums and 16 top 40 singles on the U.S. charts. The hit parade included songs like “Lady” and “Come Sail Away.” Oh, and of course Steeler fans love Styx’s “Renegade,” which is often played at home games. In 2021 Styx released their 17th studio album, Crash of the Crown.

REO Speedwagon first achieved massive success with their 1978 album You Can Tune a Piano but You Can’t Tuna Fish, which contained “Roll With the Changes” and “Time for Me to Fly.” Their ’80 release Hi Infidelity had four singles that went on to become major hits. The band’s name is derived from the REO Speedwagon, a 1915 truck designed by Ransom Eli Olds, of Oldsmobile fame. This is a great chance to very popular classic rock bands on the same bill. And as an added bonus the concert will also feature special guest, Canadian rockers, Loverboy. The group is best known for their hit, “Working for the Weekend.”  The Pavilion at Star Lake, 665 Rt. 18 Burgettstown. (R.H.)

Wednesday, September 14

Shemekia Copeland, Grammy nominated, soul, blues, and Americana vocalist will be headlining the first night of the Highmark Heritage and Blues Festival. Copeland is touring in support of her just released new album, Done Come Too Far. The new album speaks to racisim, sexual abuse, and the killing of children. It’s not all heavy blues lyrics as there are humorous songs about family, catfish, and interracial love. Others performing at the two-day festival include: Ruthie Foster, Steel Pulse, The Commonheart, and Christone “Kingfish” Ingram. Highmark Stadium, 510 W. Station square Dr., Station Square.

Friday, September 16

Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” is an outstanding song by the English piano rocker Elton John. It’s also the last song of his encore set on his Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour, which visits PNC Park for a highly anticipated concert. John is one of the world’s best-selling musical acts. He’s sold over 300 million records. (Would that many reach the Moon from Earth?) John has charted more than 50 Top 40 hits, including seven consecutive no. 1 U.S. albums, 58 Billboard Top 40 singles, 27 top 10, four no. 2 and nine at no. 1. And from 1970 to 2000 he had at least one song in the Billboard Hot 100. One reason for that success is his long-running songwriting partnership with lyricist Bernie Taupin. Taupin would write the lyrics and give them to John who would then compose the music.

In 1970, “Your Song,” from his second, eponymous album, was the first tune that really got John noticed. He was a sight to see in his early years with his stylish eyeglasses and flamboyant outfits. John, a very talented piano player and singer, created songs that ruled the rock radio airwaves, especially in the 1970s. They included “Daniel,” “Honky Cat,” “Rocket Man,” “Crocodile Rock,” “Bennie and the Jets,” and “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting.” John’s touch has woven its way through the cultural fabric in other ways, too. He rewrote the lyrics to his “Candle in the Wind,” originally about Marilyn Monroe, to reflect the life of Princess Diana after her tragic death in 1997. John has also excelled on Broadway and received Tony Award nominations for Best Original Musical Score for The Lion King, Aida, and Billy Elliott, winning for Aida. Being a gay man, he fought for more funds to combat AIDS and raised large sums himself with his Elton John AIDS Foundation. He is retiring to spend more time with his husband David Furnish and their two children. John has been a part-time resident of Atlanta, Georgia, since 1991. 8 p.m. 115 Federal St., North Shore. (R.H.)

Monday, September 19

The National have been a mainstay rock ‘n’ roll band for many years. The rock quintet’s fourth album, Boxer. is one of their best in a discography filled with capital-G Great albums is now over 10 years old. A lesser band’s career might have floundered, or at least plateaued, years after such a release. Not the National, who have steadily risen from their beginnings in Cincinnati through their seventh studio album, Sleep Well Beast, released in 2017, and their latest, 2019’s, I am Easy to Find. The group, now based in Brooklyn, consists of the brothers Devendorf, twin brothers Dessner, and frontman Matt Berninger. Lizzy Goodman chronicles the National and dozens of other indie groups in her book Meet Me in the Bathroom: Rebirth and Rock and Roll in New York 2001-2011.  However, the National never forgot home with songs like “Bloodbuzz Ohio.” They play Heinz Hall this month. Special guest is Indigo Sparke. 600 Penn, Ave., Cultural District. (C.M., R.H.)

Wednesday, September 21

The Marcus King Band opened in Pittsburgh for such top name acts like Chris Stapleton and the Tedeschi Trucks Band. Marcus King who started playing guitar at a very young age, and performed with his dad’s band when only 11 years old, has become a solo performer over the last several years. Rising out of Greenville, South Carolina in 2013 he now headlines his own shows. King released his debut solo album, El Dorado, produced by Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, in 2020. “The Well” is a single from that album and reached no. 12 on Billboards AAA (Adult Alternative Airplay) chart in 2019 in advance of the album release. Young Blood, King’s new album is out now. Also on the bill are Neal Francis, Ashland Craft, and Dean Delray. Doors open 7 p.m. Stage AE, 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore.(C.M., R.H.)

Rising blues/rock guitarist Marcus King brings his band to Pittsburgh for a sold-out show at Mr. Smalls Theatre this month. (photo: Alysse Gafkjen)

Rising blues/rock guitarist Marcus King brings his band to Pittsburgh for a show at Stage AE this month. (photo: Alysse Gafkjen)

Thursday, September 22

The Goo Goo Dolls began in 1986 as a trio from Buffalo, New York, with a penchant for the sound of their alt-rock heroes, The Replacements. Paul Westerberg, The Replacements’ singer, would later contribute lyrics to the Goo Goo Dolls song “We Are The Normal.” The Goo Goo Dolls released four albums in the ‘80s and early ‘90s, but it was their fifth album, A Boy Named Goo, and the single “Name” that brought them fame. 1998’s Dizzy Up the Girl was a bigger smash loaded with more hits, such as “Slide” and “Iris.” The band would perform the latter song and a cover of Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers’ “American Girl” as part of The Concert for New York City, a benefit show for those affected by the September 11 attacks. The group continues to release new music about every three years; their latest is this year’s Chaos in Bloom. They play Stage AE this month. Blue October opens. Doors open at 6 p.m. 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore. (C.M., R.H.)

Friday, September 23

The Avett Brothers mix the light romanticism of early rock and roll with the craftsmanship of a Paul Simon-like singer/songwriter and add a dash of the hoedown spirit of old-school Americana. Built around the nucleus of brothers Scott and Seth, the North Carolina band rode to prominence in the folk-rock revival that also brought you Fleet Foxes and Mumford and Sons. Since they partnered with producer du jour Rick Rubin on 2009’s I and Love and You, the Avetts have been unstoppable on their path to mega-success. Their triumph can be traced by their ascension through Pittsburgh venues: In 10 years, they’ve gone from a small place at the Three Rivers Arts Festival to filling up Stage AE. The Avett Brothers even created the theme song for the popular PBS series “A Chef’s Life.” Their latest album is 2019’s Closer than Together. Doors open at 6 p.m. Stage AE, 400 North Shore Dr., North Shore. (E.C., R.H.)

Wednesday, September 28

Post Malone with Doja Cat were nominated for Song of the Summer for “I Like You (A Happier Song)” at August’s VMA Awards. The party continues this month at PPG Paints Arena, where he will headline. Born Austin Richard Post, the singer blends rock with cloud rap for a heady sound, such as on “Wow.” Other popular songs include his collaboration with rapper Swae Lee for Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: “Sunflower.” Another collaboration includes a remix of Lorde’s song “Homemade Dynamite” with SZA and Khalid. His latest album is this year’s Twelve Carat Toothache. 2018’s Beerbongs & Bentleys broke the record for most songs simultaneously in the top 20 on Billboard’s Hot 100 with nine total. 8 p.m. 1001 Fifth Ave., Uptown. (C.M., R.H.)

Little Feat has a concert special on PBS for the 45th Anniversary of the 45th anniversary of their album Waiting for Columbus. It was recorded at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee. The group will be in concert at the Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall in Munhall. Some of the hits from this American folk-rock band are “Dixie Chicken” and “Fat Man in the Bathtub.” Guitarist Lowell George and pianist Bill Payne formed the group, which dissolved in 1979 before George’s death that same year. The band reformed in 1987. Its latest album is 2012’s Rooster Rag. 8 p.m.  (C.M., R.H.)

Other Shows of Interest

Friday, September 2
The Clarks (Acrisure Stadium Kickoff & Rib Fest)
Justin Fabus (Jergel’s)
Gene the Werewolf (South Park Amphitheater)
Brittney Chantele (Music on the Mon, S.S. Works)

Sunday, September 4
Right Turn Clyde (Vinoski Winery)

Tuesday, September 6
Interpol and Spoon (Stage AE)
S.G. Goodman (Club Cafe)

Thursday, September 8
The Mountain Goats (Roxian Theatre)
Pittsburgh Opera (Cultural Trust’s Backyard)

Friday, September 9
Four Chord Music Festival (Wild Things Park)
Avi Kaplan (Thunderbird Cafe)

Sunday, September 11
Right Turn Clyde (Vinoski Winery)

Friday, September 16
Pittsburgh International Jazz Festival (Highmark Stadium)
Here Comes the Mummies (Jergel’s)
Steep Canyon Rangers (Thunderbird Cafe)

Saturday, September 17
The Robert Cray Band (Palace Theatre)

Sunday, September 18
Quiet Riot (Jergel’s)

Monday, September 19
Echo & The Bunnymen (Roxian Theatre)

Tuesday, September 20
Modern English (Crafthouse Stage)

Wednesday, September 21
Five Finger Death Punch (Star Lake)
Pale Waves (Thunderbird Cafe)

Friday, September 23
They Might Be Giants (Mr. Smalls)
Bastard Bearded Irishmen (Vinoski Winery)

Tuesday, September 27
Thomas Wendt Quintet (Cultural Trust’s Backyard)

Big Shows on the Horizon

October 1
Rick Springfield (Hollywood Casino at The Meadows)

October 6
The Killers (Petersen Events Center)

October 8
Earth, Wind & Fire (UPMC Events Center)
Alan Jackson (PPG Paints Arena)
En Vogue (Hollywood Casino at The Meadows)

October 10
Death Cab for Cutie (Stage AE)

October 20
Casting Crowns (Petersen Events Center)
Joe Satriani (Palace Theatre)

October 22
The Marshall Tucker Band (CHMH)
Smashing Pumpkins and Janes Addiction (PPG Paints arena)

October 27
The Lone Bellow (Mr. Smalls)

October 29
The Outlaws and Atlanta Rhythm Section (Palace Theatre)

October 30
The Dropkick Murphys (Palace Theatre)

Rick Handler is the executive producer of Entertainment Central.