FARE TRADE traces its origins to the summer of 1968. Michael Runo (guitar & vocals) and Mark Terreri (drums & vocals) mutually decided that forming a band would be a great way to share their friendship, learning and playing music together. Shortly after starting out, the founding members recruited a very close friend, David Lee Frost, to be the band’s bass player and 3rd vocalist. David Buxton was next to join in 1969, becoming the band’s second guitarist, resulting in the birth of FARE TRADE.
The boys in the band entered high school in 1970. John Kensinger (keyboards) rounded out the line-up of Fare Trade in 1972. The band’s 3rd guitarist, John Pokrandt, joined the band in 1978.
FARE TRADE is best known for their unique blend of epic covers and southern rock styles. Their first ever recording experience at Trackmaster Studio, with Rich Sargent and Alan Baumgartner at the helm, resulted in a 45 that boasted a first pressing sell-out of their originals, “Can’t Get Through to You” and “Summerfest”. The songs received an impressive amount of requests, as well as significant air play on KB radio.
In 1975, fortune appeared to smile on FARE TRADE when they were befriended by Southern Rock superstars Lynyrd Skynyrd, who recognized something in this band out of Buffalo. Skynyrd became a mentor to FARE TRADE, and greatly influenced the band’s migration to the Southern Rock genre. Then, just as quickly, fate came calling. FARE TRADE’s connections with Lynyrd Skynyrd appeared ready to open doors for the group when a tragic 1977 plane crash claimed the lives of Skynyrd front man Ronnie Van Zant, Guitarist Steve Gaines and backup vocalist Cassie Gaines. The surviving Skynyrd members were so traumatized by the crash that they disbanded, embarking on what eventually became a 10-year hiatus. For FARE TRADE, the loss of their mentors also meant the loss of vital record company and booking connections. After the band’s final farewell show on January 2, 1981 at The Barrelhead (which according to club owners Billy and Peter Klas, had broken all previous attendance records), FARE TRADE quit the club scene. FARE TRADE spent the next couple of years writing and recording originals, until in 1983, with no clear path to success, the members of FARE TRADE amicably went their separate ways.
Since reuniting in 2010 to celebrate a 30 year anniversary concert, this three-guitar power house band, armed with all its original members, has been performing to sold-out shows wherever they set up shop. Limiting their engagements to two or three select venues per year, a FARE TRADE show is a foot-stompin’, bring the house down experience you do not want to miss.
In addition to their annual Cabin Fever concert, FARE TRADE unselfishly donates their talent and time to worthy fund-raising events throughout Western New York.
At each of FARE TRADE’s Fever concerts, as well as selected shows where we donate our talent and time, the band seizes those opportunities to support and showcase up and coming talent. Examples include Rock Ed (a middle school rock band where John Kensigner is a teacher), singer/songwriters John Higgins and Lynz Munich, The Jacks (a twenties-something 60’s and 70’s rock band), and Nashville-bound Eric Van Houten, just to name a few.
FARE TRADE’s performance at The Tralf was documented through the creation of a two hour, live concert DVD. The live recording was impressively handled by Bill Kothen and his talented crew from Select Sound. FARE TRADE had the good fortune of having the band’s dear friend and Buffalo Music Hall of Famer, Matt Young, produce and master the project.
It has been six years since the reuniting of FARE TRADE. Popular demand has kept this very successful run alive. Since 2010 FARE TRADE’s very select and special concert venues have awed thousands. Each of our “Fever” concerts has sold out.
FARE TRADE owes their good fortune and renewed success to their devoted fans…the FARE TRADE Family. They are truly humbled and in awe of the incredible numbers in attendance at their shows. They know full well that without the continued and unyielding support of their fans… their family… their friends…FARE TRADE would cease to exist.