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Mike Runo

Music Biography


1964 – Saw  “The Beatles” on The Ed Sullivan Show.  Started guitar lessons one week   later.


1969 – Formed the band “Fare Trade” with David Lee Frost, John Kensinger, John Pokrandt and others. Played many Ch.7 Variety Club Telethons and countless teen dances at local and regional high schools.


1974 – Taught 30 guitar students at Nyhart’s Music store in East Aurora, NY. 1975-1978 taught 15 students at home.


1975 – Began a great friendship with the Southern Rock Band, “Lynyrd Skynyrd.” Learned solos (Free Bird) and licks from ‘Skynyrd’ guitarist, Allen Collins. Two years later, Allen asked me to be his guitar tech on their up-coming 77’tour. I declined due to other commitments. On October 20, 1977,  “Lynyrd Skynyrd’s” private jet ran out of fuel and crashed…. I could have been on that plane.


1979 – Played lead guitar in several sold-out performances of the rock opera, ‘Jesus Christ, Superstar” at Art Park in Lewiston, NY.


1983 – Formed “Strider” with lead singer, Glenda Chausse, Matt Young, Joe Martucci and Johnny Magnum. Performed at many local and regional nightclubs and bars. Charity work included performances for the Special Olympics, Ch. 2’s Kid’s Escaping Drugs, M.A.D.D. and Camp Good Days and Special Times.


1984 – Took guitar lessons from BM Hall of Fame member, Tony Scozarro.


1987 – Won Buffalo Music Award for Top Rock Group --- “Strider.”


1988 – Won BMA for Top Rock Guitarist --- Mike Runo.


1988 – Won BMA for Top Rock Group runner-up --- “Strider.”


1988 – Won BMA for Top Recorded Single --- Rock and Roll Rebel, written by Michael Runo and Channel 7 News personality, Mike Randall. All proceeds from record sales went to benefit Camp Good Days and Special Times.


1988 – Recorded “Strider” album, Legacy, at Select Sound Studios in Kenmore, NY. All songs were written by Michael Runo. Produced by Michael Runo and BM Hall of Fame member, Dick Bauerle.


1990 – Joined “Armed & Dangerous,” with Brian Best and Doug Rockwitz, et al.


M. Runo

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1990 – Recorded “Armed & Dangerous” album entitled, Wanted, at Mark Studios in Clarence, NY. All songs were written by Brian Best. Produced by Brian Best, Michael Runo and sound engineer, Fred Betchen. Sound track entitled, Tonight, appeared on a 97 Rock local music compilation recording.


1991 – Won BMA for Top Rock Group runner-up --- “Armed & Dangerous.”


1992 – Joined “Widow” with BM Hall of Fame members, Donna Palmer and Ron Rocco, et al.  Played shows at all main venues of the times.  Gave guitar lesson to several students at home.


1994 – Went into exile.  (“Everything’s so blurry….”)


1996 – Joined “Only Humen” with BM Hall of Fame members Paul Varga (Talas) and Frank Pusateri. Played endless shows at every possible venue. Played many private charities.


1997 – Recorded “Only Humen” CD entitled, Six Of One…Half Dozen Of The Other. All selections written equally by Runo, Varga and Pusateri.


1998 – Joined “ShyBoy” as bass player with former “Talas” and BM Hall of Fame members, Paul Varga and Dave Constantino.  Played many shows in all local and regional venues and for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Recorded several demos at Dave’s private studio.


1999 – Won BMA for Top Rock Bassist --- Mike Runo --- The only Buffalo area musician to ever win both Top Rock Guitarist and Top Rock Bassist awards to date.


1999 – Acted as BM Hall of Fame member Billy Sheehan’s bass tech at the “Talas,” Live At The Waterfront, reunion.


2008 – Recorded vocals on a demo tape with BM Hall of Fame members, Paul Varga and Dick Bauerle at Select Sound Studios.


2009 – Played bass guitar in “Fat Brat” with Bob Wilczak and Buffalo Hall of Fame members Paul Varga and Ken Wilczak. Played all local and regional venues as well as writing and recording original music at Ken’s private studio.


2010 – Reunited with “Fare Trade” and performed a successful 30-year reunion show at the Chicken Coop in West Seneca.


2011 – Continued performing select shows with “Fare Trade.” Charity shows include, yearly benefit for the Italian American Police Association at the Wings Pavilion in Orchard Park. Benefits for Relay for life, Exposure Concert for abused women, American Legion Bike Blessing, Benefit for a friend, Tony Nigro..........


2012-- Recorded a live show DVD with “Fare Trade” at The Tralf  in downtown Buffalo.


2012 – Joined with BHoF members Richard Bauerle, Paul Varga, Matt Young, Al Monty and other members Mike Lorenzo and Donnie Tomasulo to form a band called The All-Star Project....“A.S.P.”  We play various local and regional venues. Head lined a Benefit for 'Little Rocky' with new and up-coming local band, “Kill The Clock.”


2013-- Recorded background vocals on a demo tracks for local recording artist, Scott Celani.


2014-- Auditioned for TV's, America's Got Talent in Indiana with Scott Celleni, Brian Boadry and Myself. We sang an A Capella version of “The Eagles,” Seven Bridges Road, and made it through 2 rounds of auditions.


2014-- Donated time at Select Sound Studios for a class run by Matt Young, which taught many students recording techniques.


2014-- “Fare Trade” won a Lifetime Achievement Award from Nite-Life Magazine.


2016--  Performing with, “A.S.P.” “Fat Brat,” and “Scott Celani,” Will be participating in a “Armed & Dangerous” reunion scheduled for May, 2016. Will be writing and recording new music with members of “Strider,” in the near future..........................


2016– Performed with, Carl Dixon (The Guess Who, April Wine, Coney Hatch) and opened for Grand Funk Railroad.



2018 – Inducted into the Buffalo Music Hall Of Fame.


2020– Joined new group, Allykat, with local rock legends, Allison Rabbit, Bobby Wilczak, Craig Maddigan and Rick Miller. Currently playing and recording in the local Buffalo market. 


2023– Currently performing with, ASP, Allykat and Eagles tribute band, Tequila Sunrise with Dick Baurele, Scott Celani and others.

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