Rock Venues That Are No Longer There

Written by 
Rate this item
(893 votes)

In the mid to late 60’s and a little beyond, clubs started to spring up all over the Philadelphia area.  There were The Main Point, The Trauma, The Bijou Café, The Theater of the Living Arts, The 2nd Fret. The Artist Hut, The 2nd of Autumn, The Magic Theater and The Focal Point. 

Some had semi known nationally artists perform, but most were mainly for local talent that were springing up at that time.  Bands like Elizabeth, Noah’s Ark, The Nazz, Thunder and Roses, The Mary Jane Company. The American Dream, Sweet Stavin’ Chain, Woody’s Truck Stop (at one time Todd Rundgren was the lead guitarist) ,Good News (featuring Kevin Bacon’s brother) ,High Treason and Edison Electric were able to build a local following and get record contracts in large part because of these clubs.

Later on it others followed like the Stars Club (owned by Stephen Starr who now owns several top drawer eating establishments in Philadelphia) , Emerald City (on the site of the Latin Casino), Ripley’s , Chestnut Cabaret and 23 East. They all have come and gone.  In fact, the only one left is The Theater of the Living Arts now known as the TLA. 

With the advent of the large venues like the Spectrum, JFK Stadium and the Veterans stadium, the smaller clubs dried up.  Ironically, what comes around goes around and all of the big venues from that time frame also are no longer there. A new Electric Factory is now in operation in a different location and features acts that don’t have enough of a following to pack the big venues. 

The Tower Theater is still a great place to see a concert as is the Keswick Theater.  None of these venues operate on a daily or even weekly basis, but back in 1967 when the music really started to explode, the many small clubs were open at least on the weekend. There was nothing better than seeing live music at these great smaller clubs that are no longer there.

The Old Electric Factory

Located at 22 and Arch in Philadelphia, The Electric Factory was launched on February 2, 1968. In its short history a virtual Who’s Who in rock played at the unique club.  The Cream (later Derek and The Dominos with Eric Clapton would also appear), Janis Joplin & Big Brother and the Holding Company, The Grateful Dead, Elton John, Van Morrison (the headliner for the last show on November 21, 1970) ,Jimi Hendrix, Chicago, Santana, The Who (did the world premiere of Tommy Live on October 19, 1969)  and The Jefferson Airplane were among others that played at the old tire factory. 

The acts that appeared there became so popular that the Spectrum was needed to meet the demand of a larger audience.  Electric Factory Concerts was thus closed.  Twenty five years later, the new Electric Factory opened in a new location. 

More on the Electric Factory here.

The Spectrum

By the Fall of 1968 it was time to test the waters in a much larger venue for the emerging new rock music.  On October 19, 1968 the First Quaker City Rock Festival ushered in a new era.  Since there was probably a fair amount of uncertainty about how well the tickets would sell, the first line up was packed.  It featured The Buddy Guys-Junior Wells Blues Band, Moby Grape, Janis Joplin Big Brother and the Holding Company, The Chambers Brothers and the headliners, Vanilla Fudge. It was the first of countless fantastic concerts.  As far as large venues go, the Spectrum wasn’t a bad place to see a concert even though it was primarily a sports venue.    

The Main Point

Located in suburban Bryn Mawr, The Main Point opened on February 26, 1964 primarily as a folk club.  Joni Mitchel, James Taylor, John Denver, Gordon Lightfoot, Linda Ronstadt and Eric Andersen were among the early acts to appear. Later, in the late 60’s and early 70’s rock acts like Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Hall & Oates, The Velvet Underground (with Lou Reed),  Bonnie Raitt (who actually lived in Bryn Mawr at one time), Captain Beefheart & his Magic Band, Jackson Browne, Patti Smith and Tom Waits all appeared. There was a real mix of performers, Jazz, Comedy, and Blues.  Rick Nelson, Randy Newman, Byard Lancaster, John Lee Hocker, Dion, Laura Nyro (great songwriter), James Cotton, Chick Corea, Bill Withers, John Prime, Martin Mull, Mose Allison, Robert Klein, Jim Croce, Cheech & Chong, Lily Tomlin, Cat Stevens, Harry Chapin, Janis Ian and Tim Hardin (fantastic song writer) all appeared at one time or another.    Buddy Guy was second only to Bruce Springsteen in the most exciting shows. 

The Trauma and The Second Fret

The Trauma was at 2121 Arch Street in Philadelphia and was started in early 1967.   The proprietor of The Trauma was Manny Rubin, who also ran The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia's leading folk club at the time that also no longer exists. 

The Second Fret was a place to see acts like James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, Arlo Guthrie (who wrote “Ring Around the Rosie Rag” about an experience that actually took place after a Second Fret show in Rittenhouse Square right around the corner), and Dave Van Ronk.  Soon it was bringing some rock bands, but the club was just too small to present them properly.

The Trauma soon became known as the psychedelic night club with acts like Lothar and the Hand People, Steve Miller band, The Velvet Underground, the Strawberry Alarm Clock, Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, Canned Heat, and others that were all part of the new rock that was emerging in 1967.  The club looked like a normal neighborhood bar when you first walked in. 

The real action was up stairs where there was a stage complete with the first light show in the area.  The house band (managed by Manny) Mandrake Memorial was the opening act for most of the shows and were almost as popular as the headliners with their non-stop music act. It was most unfortunate that the group didn’t get recorded in their earliest day before things started to fall apart.  The club itself fell victim to the much larger Electric factory once they opened their doors in 1968 just a half block away

The Bijou Café

The small club located on Lombard Street in Philadelphia, first opened October 4, 1972.  The first show was Dan Hicks and his Hot licks with local act Whole Oates (later to become Hall & Oates) as the opening act.   Almost any genre of music was performed at the Bijou but the main focus (at least in the early stages) of the entertainment was Jazz and comedy. 

The Jazz lineups were nothing short of spectacular and the comedy was even better!  The National Lampoon Show with future superstars John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Gilda Radner and Lorraine Newman all appeared together.  Another comedy troupe, Firesign Theater also appeared.  Billy Crystal was an opening act four times and a headliners three times. His impersonation of Muhammad Ali was a big crowd favorite. Albert Brooks, Richard Pryor, Martin Mull and his Fabulous Furniture, Steve Martin, Jerry Seinfeld and Dick Gregory all keep the audiences amused.

As did future late night hosts David Letterman and Jay Leno.  Leno first performed in 1973 as the warm up for the fantastic Jazz-Rock fusion band Chick Corea and Return to Forever on December 10-27, 1973. The other great Jazz-Rock fusion band Weather Report also played the Bijou. 

Blues legend Muddy Waters, Reggae superstar Bob Marley and The Wailers and some R & B stars were among the variety of acts. Probably the most talked about of all the shows were the first appearances of Bette Midler on December 12-16, 1972.  It wasn’t just her singing, but her bawdy personality made her a crowd favorite. The then totally unknown Barry Manilow, played keyboards and served as Bette’s music director.

There were many great moments with rock bands as well.  Among the rock acts that stood out were George Thorogood and the Delaware Destroyers, Billy Joel, Steely Dan, Robert Palmer. Graham Parker (outstanding show that left people wondering why he never became a superstar) Dr. John, Pat Benatar, Rick Nelson, Al Kooper, Warren Zevon, Paul Butterfield, Tom Waits, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Sir Douglas Sham and  John “Cougar” Mellencamp.   U2’s first Philadelphia performance was at the Bijou on March 4, 1981.    

Veteran’s and JFK Stadiums

The Spectrum even became too small for the demand to see the big rock stars.  Soon stars like David Bowie, Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, The Who, U2, Billy Joel and Elton John (together and separate) were able to fill up the stadium meant for baseball or football.  Despite the huge screens and sound systems, the Vet was not the best place to see sports let alone a rock show.  

JFK was hardly much better, but much more historical.  Besides the international live aid concert on July 13, 1985, there were several large shows.  Yes and Peter Frampton was the first of the modern era on June 13, 1976.  A year later, June 11, 1977, Frampton was back as the headliner along with Lynyrd Skynrd and The J. Geils Band.

The Rolling Stones started their world tour at JFK in 1981 with two dates, September 25 and 26.  It wasn’t the first time they played JFK.  They had already played there on June 17, 1978.   They came back to the Spectrum to start another world tour on September 1,1989 and did a practice rehearsal at JFK just before the show on August 29, 1989.

On June 20, 1978 it was the roundup show featuring Southern Rock bands The Allman Brothers, Marshall Tucker, .The Outlaws, 38 Special and Molly Hatchett   That same year on August 12 it was Fleetwood Mac and The Steve Miller Band. 

There were actually a surprising number of other concerts in the stadium that held around 110,000 people. The Kinks and Foreigner co-headlined a show on June 20, 1982. It was the Police, Joan Jett and REM on August 20, 1983 and Genesis, Blonde, and Elvis Costello on August 21, 1987.   Van Halen headlined a show labeled the Monsters of Rock on June 11, 1988. The Amnesty International Concert with Bruce Springsteen, U2, Peter Gabriel and Sting was held on September 9, 1988.  The last show was Bob Dylan and the Grateful Dead held on July 7, 1989.

Almost forgotten in the rock history of JFK, is The Beatles performance.  It took place on August 16, 1966.  The stage was set up in one corner of the stadium.  That corner held around 20,000 people screaming fans. Despite the popularity of The Beatles, that was all they expected to sell.  Imagine, they were the biggest act in rock at the time and that was all they expected to draw. That should give you an idea of how much the music grew in the years that followed.

The TLA (Theater of the Living Arts)

69 comments

  • Comment Link Glen p steinlander Sunday, October 27, 2019 posted by Glen p steinlander

    Does anybody remember a bar called ripleys believe it or not?? In south philly

  • Comment Link G.Smith Wednesday, August 7, 2019 posted by G.Smith

    Who remembers the underground night club called the Cave back in the 60's and early 70's?

  • Comment Link Keith Monday, July 8, 2019 posted by Keith

    See many shows at the old Bijou. Gram Parsons and The Fallen Angels on 3-16-73 was prob my favorite and I went annually.

  • Comment Link WM Sunday, May 12, 2019 posted by WM

    Kenny Rankin Main Point 1976
    https://bit.ly/2LCPwYk

  • Comment Link Dale G Saturday, May 11, 2019 posted by Dale G

    Unable to find on Setlist site, I could have sworn I saw Linda Ronstadt at the Bijou cafe sometime 73-75. It was post - Stone Pony’s days. Also remember Kenny Rankin at The Main Point 75-77 but again can’t find it

  • Comment Link Jack Murray Saturday, April 20, 2019 posted by Jack Murray

    Although I’d been a fan of his radio shows for awhile, the only time I actually met Mr. Morgan (Mr. T?) was at a show he produced at an old theater in Manayunk called The Kaleidoscope. My band (Phila’s) Black Flag opened the show. Next up was Chris Bond’s Thunder & Roses.
    Cat Mother and the All Night Newsboys headlined the show. They had a radio hit at the time. Must’ve been 1969-ish.

  • Comment Link Stephen Spera Sunday, April 14, 2019 posted by Stephen Spera

    Wow, I remember most of it perfectly. Played most of the venues as well. The Factory, Second Fret, Trauma, Main Line, Grendel's.....Got in free most of the time too l cause I played those venues. Saw everyone - literally. Plus, what few folks know now- everyone had to play TWO sets a night ! ( this was part of the old-time setup-) and a few nights for EACH tour. So, for example, I'd see Procol Harum do six shows per tour!! Of all the amazing music- some of the truly great shows were- Procol ( ANYtime), Hendrix, Arthur Brown, Manfred Mann Chapter Three, Moby Grape, Jeff Beck ( at the Trauma! ) , Traffic, Mott the Hoople, Jack Bruce ( with and without Cream )......and, I can tell you their sets, all of them.

  • Comment Link Robert Tuesday, April 9, 2019 posted by Robert

    RE: Fanny at small venue early '70's
    They played the Bijou Cafe on April 21, 1973.
    https://www.setlist.fm/setlist/fanny/1973/bijou-cafe-philadelphia-pa-33cbe4c1.html

  • Comment Link Bea Thursday, March 28, 2019 posted by Bea

    Does anyone remember The Artist's Hut?

  • Comment Link gnuy mallarino Wednesday, March 20, 2019 posted by gnuy mallarino

    Very early 70s2 I saw Fanny in a small venue in Philadelphia, trying to remember which one???

  • Comment Link Buddy Sunday, February 17, 2019 posted by Buddy

    Aum played The Electric Factory. 68 or 69.

  • Comment Link John Guttmann Tuesday, February 5, 2019 posted by John Guttmann

    The Allmans Electric Factory shows in 1/70 were not their first east coast shows. Far from it in fact. They played on NY at the Fillmore Wast 12/26-28/69 as the opener for Blood Sweat & Tears. I saw two of the six shows. Tenet had played at Ungano’s in NY even before that as well as multiple shows in Boston.

  • Comment Link Otto Greenleaf Thursday, December 27, 2018 posted by Otto Greenleaf

    I saw The Roches & Steve Goodman at the Walnut Street Theater and Tom Chapin & Marshall Tucker Band at Widener U's field house. I was born in '63 so I was a little too young to go clubbing. Saw Chicago Transit Authority at Atlantic City's Steel Pier in '69 with my Dad.

  • Comment Link Bobby Thursday, December 13, 2018 posted by Bobby

    The opening act for the Mothers was a group called Gun. During their act a bunch of nuns wearing Granny glasses moved through the audience which I thought strange. They appeared later on stage as The Mothers performed. They pulled out baby dolls and started pulling their arms and legs off. Frank Zappa was wearing pigtails and later in the show this big biker type came to the mike and sang My Boyfriend’s Back!

  • Comment Link Da Wolf Saturday, August 25, 2018 posted by Da Wolf

    Went to see the Doors 1st show in philly at Town Hall for some reason they opened the show did the whole 1st album & then Nina Simon came out & started yelling at people leaving because they came to see the Doors BIZZ R she was actually very good Oh yea saw the Wailers at the Showboat & Peter Tosh was euphoric.

  • Comment Link Billy Saturday, August 4, 2018 posted by Billy

    The Doors performed at the Spectrum on 5/01/70. Went to the show instead of my prom.

  • Comment Link Geoff Chambers Thursday, April 12, 2018 posted by Geoff Chambers

    I was lucky enough to see the Beatles at JFK in 1966, the summer after my high school graduation. Our tickets were $12, which included $7 round-trip bus fare from Allentown. The Ronettes, Remains and Cyrkel were the openers. The Beatles only played for about a half-hour. The crowd was more subdued than expected, but the group's performance was literally electrified. A light rain fell accompanied by lightning, Apparently, their equipment wasn't grounded properly, so when they approached the microphones, they received shocks. Still, the sound wasn't bad and as I recall, the performances were great.

  • Comment Link Wick Sunday, March 18, 2018 posted by Wick

    I must have gone to the Factory at least 10 times,maybe more but which shows are clouded...but I know for a fact I saw Three Dog Night And the Flying Burrito Brothers (Parsons was soooo f*ed up he could hardly stand). Also Neil Young and Crazy Horse. I remember my friend with his old 62 Beetle pulling up and asking if I wanted to see Cream; I passed. also passed on Hendrix. Oh yes and Moby Grape, best f*in bunch of guitar players I had ever witnessed ,ever. Byrds for sure.Renaissance ,yup.Moody Blues I think. Remember sitting on wooden benches I think? Great times. 3 bands for $5 or $10 (of course gas was 25 cents a gallon)

  • Comment Link Betsy Monday, February 12, 2018 posted by Betsy

    Was at opening night for The Factory, waiting outside, freezing in my white silk Neru Shirt. Remembering was already married but sometimes went with the girls. Saw MANY of the inexpensive shows remembering the large ape that walked around. My ex was tripping and was freaked out when Jack Cassidy or was it Jorma, from the Airplane, was tapping him on the shoulder, then he got lost in the strobe light tunnel, LOL. I didn't do drugs and that whole night freaked me out too. Remembering Diodato (?), along with others at the Main Point. Remembering Odetta (at least 1964) at the 2nd Fret. Great Times, Great Years for all Music

  • Comment Link Rick Penny Monday, December 25, 2017 posted by Rick Penny

    Those clubs at the height of the Philly underground scene were special. Looking back, I was lucky enough to have seen Jimi's two shows at the Factory, and his other one at The Arena. Also the Mothers New Years Eve show at The Trauma. Add in The Who's debut of Tommy, The Byrds with Clarence White, Cream, Ravi Shankar at the Academy of Music, Moby Grape at 2nd Fret, and all the great local bands that served as openers.

  • Comment Link Bill Mosko Wednesday, November 15, 2017 posted by Bill Mosko

    Great site T.
    My first concert was at the Spectrum.
    Head Hands and Feet, Captain Beyond, the Allman Brothers Band. Probably went to over 1000 shows since. Many memories. A favorite - At the 2nd U2 show at the Bijou I got to sit with Bono on the steps leading to the 2nd floor after the show. No one else was there with us, It was strange that i got that chance because they were blowing everyone away at the time. I asked him how he felt now that they were going to be a Huge success. He was very humble about it and just thanked me. Then I repeated that they were going to be Really big. He said "Thanks!"

  • Comment Link Tom Weaver Wednesday, November 15, 2017 posted by Tom Weaver

    RE: Looking for the name of an old club south of Phila. Not sure if it was even in PA or DE.

    Back in early 80s I saw Southside Johnny and the Jukes there and trying to remember the name.

    Bryan, you're probably referring to "The Other Side" a bar/concert hall in Northern Delaware, off of Route 202, near the Pennsylvania state line in a shopping center near the now-defunct Brandywine Raceway. There were 2 separate bars side-by-side in that strip mall. The other bar was called "Seasons Change." I saw Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes at "The Other Side" as well as Jack Bruce and a few others.

  • Comment Link Max Saturday, September 30, 2017 posted by Max

    Wonder when "The Showboat" before became the "Bijou"? All that great jazz was great w/seating included 3-4' wood shelf for drink and ashtray. Easy to get in regardless of age. Open on Sundays for teenagers was nice.
    Saw Wes Montgomery and Carmen McCray a week before he died. All those great jazz acts was special.

  • Comment Link HankL Sunday, September 17, 2017 posted by HankL

    2/11/70 - Delaney, Bonnie & Friends (Eric Clapton & Dave Mason) w/B. B. King + (Blind Faith???) - I was at this show, I don't recall Blind Faith. A long time ago so maybe I forget but I met B.B. King backstage that night. My Mom worked with a friend of B.B. and I was in. Anyway, THANKS for this great post, so many memories.

  • Comment Link Kenneth kasper Saturday, August 12, 2017 posted by Kenneth kasper

    Saw many great shows at the spectrum rolling stones the who. Kinks yes genesis deep purple Emerson. Lake. And palmer. Supertramp. Chicago wishbone ash climax blues band foghat electric. Light orchestra. Journey ten years after blue oyster cult beach boys status quo eagles. Johnny winter Edgar winter manfred Mann Jo Jo gunne. Mountain. Bad company the firm moody blues j geils. Band def leopard black Sabbath Rory Gallagher. Spooky tooth sealevel night ranger gryphon pfm. Jethro tull. Carmen.

  • Comment Link T. Morgan Tuesday, August 1, 2017 posted by T. Morgan

    Rick- Great list. I checked it against my Electric Factory list that I got directly from EFC and it seems to be complete. To your comment about taking a vacation in the summer of 1970, they started doing bigger concerts at the Spectrum that summer signaling the end of the Factory. Thanks for your contribution
    T

  • Comment Link Rick Del Rio Sunday, July 30, 2017 posted by Rick Del Rio

    All Known Electric Factory Shows 68-70
    ----------------------------------------------
    Opens 2/2-4/68 ------ Closes 11/20,21/70
    ------------------------------------------------

    1968
    ====

    2/2-4/68 - Chambers Brothers w/First Borne (1st Grand Opening)
    2/6-11/68 - H. P. Lovecraft w/Porter Family Singers Elizabeth
    2/13-18/68 - Peanut Butter Conspiracy w/Woody’s Truck Stop
    2/27,28/68 - Hendrix Experience, Jimi w/Woody’s Truck Stop + Soft Machine (+++++)
    3/1-3/68 - Country Joe & The Fish w/Group Image + Edison Electric Band
    3/5-9/68 - Ultimate Spinach w/Elizabeth
    3/7,8/68 - Vanilla Fudge w/Druids Of Stonehenge
    3/15,16/68 - Big Brother & The Holding Co. w/John Hammond
    3/22-24/68 - Mothers of Invention w/Nova Local
    3/24/68 - "Annie Oakley" by Phoenix Productions (children’s theater cartoons puppet show)
    3/26-31/68 - Muddy Waters w/American Dream
    4/1/68 - Wes Montgomery
    4/8-11/68 - Hugh Masakela w/Paul Butterfield Blues Band + Pandora’s Box
    4/12-14/68 - Cream w/American Dream + Woody’s Truck Stop ** (+++++)
    4/16,17/68 - Stan Kenton & His Neophonic Orch.
    4/26-28/68 - Grateful Dead w/Edison Electric
    4/30/68 - Procol Harum w/Edison Electric
    5/3,4/68 - Blue Cheer w/Elizabeth
    5/12/68 - Iron Butterfly w/Chuck Berry
    5/17-19/68 - Earth Opera w/Ritchie Havens
    5/28/68 - Band
    5/29,30/68 - Buddy Rich Band w/Elizabeth
    6/1,2/68 - Electric Flag w/Friends Of The Family
    6/6-9/68 - Canned Heat w/Friends Of The Family
    6/14,15/68 - Steppenwolf w/Elizabeth
    6/21,22/68 - Nazz w/Cat Mother & The All Night News Boys
    6/27-29/68 - Blood, Sweat & Tears w/Vanilla Fudge + Lothar & The Hand People

    July & Aug (vacation) ???

    9/5/68 - "Rock Benefit" American Dream, Elizabeth, Sweet Stavin' Chain, Edison Electric Band, Yum-Yum, + Arthur Hall's African Drummers & Dancers (flyer)
    9/6/68 - Chambers Brothers w/Sweet Stavin' Chain + Yum Yum
    9/13-16/68 - Butterfield Blues Band w/New York Rock & Roll Ensemble
    9/20,21/68 - Nazz w/Velvet Underground + Caldwell Winfield Blues Band
    9/27,28/68 - Amboy Dukes w/James Cotton Blues Band + Elizabeth
    10/4,5/68 - Moby Grape w/Chrysalis + Albert King
    10/11,12/68 - Procol Harum w/Albert King + Edison Electric Band
    10/13,14/68 - B. B. King w/Edison Electric Band + Sweet Stavin' Chain
    10/17/68 - Elvin Bishop w/Aum
    10/20,21/68 - Muddy Waters w/Mandrake Memorial
    10/25,26/68 - Jeff Beck w/Rod Steward, Ten Years After + Stone Dawn
    10/27/68 - Byrds w/Great Jones + American Dream
    10/28,29/68 - Grateful Dead w/Edison Electric Band
    10/29,30/68 - Fleetwood Mac w/Great Jones
    11/1,2/68 - Big Brother & The Holding Co. w/John Hammond + Edison Electric Band
    11/2,3/68 - Buddy Rich w/Edison Electric Band
    11/8-10/68 - Moody Blues w/Ars Nova + The Egg
    11/16/68 - Young Bloods w/Steppenwolf, Woody's Truck Stop
    11/17,18/68 - Jefferson Airplane *
    11/26/68 - Chicago w/Humble Pie
    11/27/68 - Country Joe & The Fish w/Steve Miller Blues Band + Sweet Stavin' Chain
    12/7/68 - Sly & The Family Stone w/Shep + American Dream
    12/26/68 - Crazy World of Arthur Brown w/Graffiti & Virgin Spring
    12/27,28/68 - Byrds w/American Dream + Great Jones
    12/31/68 - Van Morrison w/Pacific Gas & Electric, Woody’s Truck Stop + Sweet Stavin' Chain
    ====================================

    1969
    ====

    1/13-15/69 - Nazz w/Woody’s Truck Stop
    1/16,17/69 - Iron Butterfly w/Sweet Nothin’
    1/23,24/69 - Mother Earth w/Edison Electric Band
    2/2/69 - Chicago Transit Authority
    2/5/69 - Redbone w/Steve Miller Blues Band + Nils Lofgrin and Grin (Spectrum?)
    2/7,8/69 - Spirit w/Chicago Transit Authority + Noah’s Ark
    2/11,12/69 - Mothers of Invention w/Gun + Paul Penta
    2/14,15/69 - Grateful Dead w/American Dream + Paul Penta
    2/16/69 - Tim Buckley w/Good News
    2/21,22/69 - Canned Heat w/American Dream
    2/27-28/69 - Lothar & The Hand People w/Blood, Sweat & Tears
    2/28-3/1/69 - Rhinoceros w/Valentine
    3/7,8/69 - Three Dog Night w/Flying Burrito Brothers (preceded by Yellow Sub movie)
    3/10/69 - American Dream w/Woody’s Truck Stop, Elizabeth + Edison Electric Band
    3/14,15/69 - B. B. King w/Sweet Nothing + Damion
    3/15/69 - James Cotton Blues Band w/The Nighthawks + Paul Geremiah
    3/16/69 - Pete Seeger w/Jean Ritchie + Michael Cooney
    3/28,29/69 - Taj Mahal w/Mountain + Danny Waugh
    4/1,2/69 - Steppenwolf w/Ansley Dunbar Retaliation + American Dream
    4/4-6/69 - Ten Years After w/Sweetwater + Gun
    4/6/69 - Amboy Dukes (Ted Nugent) w/Cannonball Adderly
    4/11,12/69 - Brian Auger, Julie Driscoll & The Trinity w/The Fat Band
    4/12/69 - Soft Machine w/Buddy Miles Express
    4/27/69 - Darius Milhaud Symphony Of Light & Sound "Creation Of The World"
    5/9,10/69 - Iron Butterfly w/Black Pearl
    5/23,24/69 - Who, The w/Woody’s Truck Stop
    6/6,7/69 - Lighthouse w/The Churls
    6/13,14/69 - Alice Cooper w/John Mayall
    6/27-29/69 - Velvet Underground w/American Dream
    7/8,9/69 - Byrds
    8/18-19/69 - Santana Blues Band
    9/3/69 - Incredible String Band
    9/5,6/69 - Chicago Transit Authority w/Spooky Tooth + Elizabeth
    9/14/69 - Fats Domino
    9/19/69 - Stooges, The w/Buddy Miles Express
    9/26,27/69 - MC5 w/American Dream
    10/3,4/69 - Mountain w/Lonnie Mack
    10/10,11/69 - Eric Burton & War w/Raven + Liverpool Scene
    10/19/69 - Who, The w/American Dream (recorded by Who engineers) **
    10/24,25/69 - Byrds w/Elizabeth + P.I.L.T
    10/26/69 - Crazy World Of Arthur Brown w/Virgin Spring (+++++)
    10/27,28/69 - Grand Funk Railroad w/American Dream + Max
    11/7-9/69 - The Flock w/Lee Michaels + Holly Modal Rounders
    11/14,15/69 - Joe Cocker w/Holly Modal Rounders
    11/21,22/69 - Youngbloods w/Rockin' Pod
    11/26/69 - Chicago Transit Authority
    11/30/69 - Jethro Tull w/Sons Of Champlin
    12/31/69 - Lighthouse w/Catfish + Elizabeth
    ====================================

    1970
    ====

    1/9-11/70 - Allman Brothers (1st east coast performance (slept in alley))
    1/10,11/70 - Buddy Rich Band w/Virgin Spring
    1/14,15/70 - Cold Blood w/Flamin’ Groovies
    1/23,24/70 - Mother Earth w/Kaleidoscope + High Treason
    1/30,31/70 - Kinks w/Eric Mercury & The Image
    2/6,7/70 - Renaissance w/Sha Na Na + Stockyard
    2/11/70 - Delaney, Bonnie & Friends (Eric Clapton & Dave Mason) w/B. B. King + (Blind Faith???)
    2/12,13/70 - Alice Cooper w/Pig Iron + Whitney Sunday
    2/21/70 - Quill w/Hammer
    2/22/70 - Jack Bruce & Friends w/Edison Electric Band
    2/28-3/1/70 - Young, Neil & Crazy Horse
    3/6,7/70 - Argent w/Seals & Crofts
    3/13,14/70 - Santana w/Zephyr + Nat Turner’s Rebellion
    4/3,4/70 - Phil Ochs w/Sweet Stavin Chain + P.I.L.T.
    4/10,11/70 - Grand Funk Railroad w/Small Faces w/Rod Stewart + Elizabeth
    4/17,18/70 - Pink Floyd w/Insect Trust
    4/24,25/70 - John Sebastian w/Good News, Ambergris + Stars Of Faith “Earth Week Celebration”
    5/1,2/70 - NRBQ w/Stockyard + Smooth Dog
    5/3/70 - Benefit For Help
    5/8,9/70 - Manfred Mann Chapter III w/Blodwyn Pig + Mylon Leferve
    5/10,17/70 - Benefit For Help
    5/23/70 - Miles Davis w/High Treason + Paul Pena
    5/24,31/70 - Benefit For Help
    6/5,6/70 - Kinks w/Mott The Hoople + Shorty w/Georgie Fame
    6/9,10/70 - Traffic w/Fairport Convention
    6/12,13/70 - Blodwyn Pig w/Fairport Convention
    6/16,17/70 - Iron Butterfly
    6/19,20/70 - Procol Harum w/Elizabeth + Brethren **

    July & Aug (vacation) ???

    9/11,12/70 - Lighthouse w/American Dream + Elton John (Elton's 1st USA gig)
    9/18,19/70 - John Mayall w/Hard Meat
    9/25,26/70 - Savoy Brown w/Chicken Shack (25th), Pink Floyd (26th (QUAD pa system)) + Love (???)
    10/2,3/70 - Humble Pie w/Mungo Jerry
    10/16,17/70 - Derek & The Dominoes (featuring Eric Clapton) (out on cd)
    10/30,31/70 - Johnny Winter w/Seals & Crofts
    11/1/70 - “Buffalo” Bob Smith "Howdy Doody Revival"
    11/6,7/70 - Mother Earth w/Elton John
    11.15.70 - Davis Miles w/Cold Blood + Cynara
    11/20,21/70 - Van Morrison w/Edison Electric Band (Electric Factory Closes)
    ====================================
    ----- DID I MISS ANY -----
    ====================================
    10/11/95 - Electric Factory re-opens (2nd Grand Opening)
    ====================================

  • Comment Link Bink Butler Sunday, July 16, 2017 posted by Bink Butler

    I see many great memories here. Just to add to the closing of the Electric Factory with Van Morrison playing all these tickets started snowing down on the crowd. Everyone was wondering what that was all about. It was a Saturday night show and we found out on Monday that via The Philadelphia Inquirer that the Factory was closed. Van and his band was amazing (except for the one person who kept hollering "play Moondance" which he never did).

    I am wondering who else used to go to the coffeehouse Hecate's Circle on Chelten Avenue between Chew St and Germantown Avenue. It was 25 cents to get into this venue. It was a big starting ground for Hall & Oates (Whole Oates). I think they played there 2 times a month for a while, so you know where I was then. Other locals played there, too. Maybe some of you can add onto this list.

  • Comment Link Paul Merc Saturday, July 15, 2017 posted by Paul Merc

    Jesus, so many memories, let's see, Main Point: Springsteen opening with David Sancious on piano Incident on 57th St., band comes out and tears into Mountain of Love; Tom Waits show with the Panst Blue Ribbon opening, Gil Scot-Heron; Mark Almond. Bijou Cafe: Billy Joel; Tonio K; Tom Waits almost pissed on my leg in the men's room, Chris Rush comedian, smoked a bone between shows with him and George Carlin; Patti Smith. Erlanger Theater: Graham Parker and the Rumor; Queen with surprisingly good Kansas. Hot Club: the Police; Elvis Costello and the Attractions. And last but not least, fuzzy on the details but I believe Electric Factory one evening, Santana, Chicago, Joe Cocker, and Janis Joplin. Not enough room to tell the bigger venues but can't forget John Lennon and Elephant's Memory, it wasn't Philly though, it was Madison Square Garden. And NRBQ AT THE CHESTNUT CABARET.

  • Comment Link Duncan Gray Wednesday, July 5, 2017 posted by Duncan Gray

    T.J. Tindall was with Duke Williams and the Extremes, at least on the Fantastic Fedora lp.

  • Comment Link WM Tuesday, June 27, 2017 posted by WM

    RE: Magic Mushrooms band

    I personally don't have any first-hand info about them but below are a few links for anyone else interested in checking them out.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Magic_Mushrooms
    http://www.garagehangover.com/magic-mushrooms/
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pB3sqroSBQw

  • Comment Link Chuck Meehan Sunday, June 25, 2017 posted by Chuck Meehan

    Interesting article
    Does anybody have any anecdotal information about the Magic Mushrooms who were University of Pennsylvania students who formed in late 1965 and who appear to be Philadelphias earliest pyschedelic band

  • Comment Link EricG Friday, April 28, 2017 posted by EricG

    another favorite at the Main Point were the Persuasions.
    Also I remember the Academy having 2 shows back to back Bonnie Raitt opened for Taj Mahal the second night vice versa.
    AAAHHH and Belmont Plateau

  • Comment Link Greg Davis Monday, April 24, 2017 posted by Greg Davis

    I started attending performances at The Main Point in...probably 68 or 69. Saw so many wonderful acts: Steve Goodman, John Prine, Bonnie Raitt, The Star Spangled Washboard Band, David Bromberg, Eric Anderson, Tom Rush, John Hartford, Doc Watson, and and so many opening acts that eventually became the main act! But of all of the performances I attended, there was one that will live forever in my mind as one of the best I can remember: Tom Waits. We knew we were in for an interesting evening when he shuffled onto the stage mumbling incoherently in that guttural growl...sat on one of the two stools...laid his guitar against the other...and pulled an already-opened can of Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer from the inside pocket of his tattered, ratty tweed jacket and laughed out something about who-knew-what. What an evening. Every song, every chord, every note on the piano became a memory stuffed away in the treasure chests of our minds. I will never forget the Main Point. It lives on in all of our hearts.

  • Comment Link Jim Sunday, April 23, 2017 posted by Jim

    Two electric factory appearances not mentioned--Humble Pie and Floyd, both I think in '70

  • Comment Link Eric G Thursday, April 6, 2017 posted by Eric G

    my first concert was the last show at the electric factory - Edison Electric, Mott the Hoople, & Van Morrison. went to tons of shows at the Bijou - a great venue was Just Jazz on Arch street - saw some greats there - Les McCann - Hugh Masekala - McCoy Tyner.
    Just saw Amy Helm at Milkboy - it was one of the 10 top shows I ever saw in my life - it is still happening if you look for IT

  • Comment Link Webmaster Friday, March 31, 2017 posted by Webmaster

    Thanks Jay. I updated the article with the change.

  • Comment Link Jay Schwartz Friday, March 31, 2017 posted by Jay Schwartz

    The club was called Stars (not Starz, though there was a band called that).

  • Comment Link T. Morgan Tuesday, March 28, 2017 posted by T. Morgan

    Jersey Phil
    I think you have this a little mixed up. T J was indeed an exceptional guitarist and was part of numerous recordings that came out of Philadelphia but he was never a member of The Mandrake Memorial.

  • Comment Link Phil Jersey Tuesday, March 28, 2017 posted by Phil Jersey

    Mandrake Memorial's T. J. Tindall remained a feature of the Philly music scene until his death in 2016.

  • Comment Link Phil Jersey Tuesday, March 28, 2017 posted by Phil Jersey

    Don't forget that some of the early big rock concerts were presented at the Philadelphia Academy of Music until it became clear that a more "robust" venue (i.e., the Spectrum) was needed to handle the enthusiasm of local music fans. Also, if you want to include the burbs, by the 80's there were a number of influential smaller clubs North of the city proper.

  • Comment Link WM Friday, January 20, 2017 posted by WM

    RE: Laura Nyro / Academy of Music

    Four dates I found:
    June 23, 1988
    March 14, 1976
    December 15, 1971
    March 9, 1969

    Hope it helps.

  • Comment Link Alan Miller Thursday, January 19, 2017 posted by Alan Miller

    Did anyone on this list see Laura Nyro at the Academy of Music? I am trying to find the date of that show.

  • Comment Link Alan Miller Thursday, January 19, 2017 posted by Alan Miller

    Note for Bill Peirson (12/27/16 comment). Thanks for the post about the First Quaker City Rock Festival. I was at that show, also. What an amazing night of music!

  • Comment Link Bill Peirson Tuesday, December 27, 2016 posted by Bill Peirson

    Don't forget Muddy Waters at the Main Point in 1967 or 1968. I had never seen him before but a few friends of mine from Temple and I went - Spellbounding performance.
    I also enjoyed the Kaleidoscope and the Electric factory. I saw many groups at the Electric Factory - two that stand out were Frank Zappa and Procul Harum.
    The Spectrum had some great shows includung the best indoor concert I have ever attended - The First Quaker City Rock Festival. God what a show that was. Buddy Guy blues Band, Moby Grape. The Chambers Brothers ( brought the house down) and then Janis Joplin in her prime.
    We were so rung out after those acts that most people left during the headliner Vanilla Fudge act. Nothing against Vanilla Fudge bit there was no way anyone could follow those preceding acts.
    What a time in the Philly music scene in the 60's still miss those days!

  • Comment Link Bryan Sunday, July 3, 2016 posted by Bryan

    Looking for the name of an old club south of Phila. Not sure if it was even in PA or DE.

    Back in early 80s I saw Southside Johnny and the Jukes there and trying to remember the name.

  • Comment Link Frank Stallone Friday, June 24, 2016 posted by Frank Stallone

    Great site I played the Electric Factoryi was the last act to play the 2nd Fret saw so many great acts at The Trauma, played the Artist Hut aka the magic theater what a wonderful time to grow up

  • Comment Link Dave Dutton Monday, May 2, 2016 posted by Dave Dutton

    Pat Metheny Group performed at Starz on Bainbridge St in 78 - he was interrupted by some rude party people during a solo guitar piece and had to stop playing - he resumed once they settled down - I was in the front row center and never heard such a great guitar sound like that before - he was incredible as was Lyle's Oberheim synth and Egan's fret less bass - Gottlieb was following Pat's cues a lot - every player played with such passion ❤️⯑

  • Comment Link David Wednesday, April 27, 2016 posted by David

    Had so many great nights at the Bijou. The Roches with Richard Belzer opening, Robin Lane, sitting around with Janis Ian upstairs. My favorite venue.

  • Comment Link Robert Monday, April 11, 2016 posted by Robert

    I saw Steely Dan at The Bijou Café. First of many shows with The Dan but there was a long hiatus between the Bijou show and a show in Camden and Atlantic City some 30 years later.

  • Comment Link Tim C Monday, April 4, 2016 posted by Tim C

    Steve M, Jerry Jeff Walker always performed drunk at the Main Point. LOL on Bruce

  • Comment Link Laura Friday, March 11, 2016 posted by Laura

    Great site. Saw Robert Palmer at the Bijou too. I was in the balcony area (very tight) because it was standing room only. I was also underage. :) Great show!

  • Comment Link berkeleybarb Thursday, February 25, 2016 posted by berkeleybarb

    I worked at the Philadelphia Music Festival at JFK Stadium in the summer of 1968. Met many acts that played (many in the rain) the highlight of which was hanging out with Pink Floyd in the geodesic domes we had built as dressing rooms in the infield. Spent about 20 minutes with them and 2 co-workers. Being from San Francisco I had already seen their show at the Fillmore in Oct. of 1967 and it was so cool to rap with them in "68

  • Comment Link Kit Pierce Tuesday, February 16, 2016 posted by Kit Pierce

    I used to hang out at the 2nd Fret after work. Met Tom Paxton and shared a piece of pizza with him!

  • Comment Link Steve B Tuesday, February 16, 2016 posted by Steve B

    So many great shows and memories...Bruce and the E Street band at The Main Point, first time in Philly. Pat Metheny Group first time in Philly at The Bijou in 78, Weather Report at The Tower in 78, ELP at The Spectrum in 74,...too many to count. And the excellent live interviews T and Ed Schioky used to do on MMR. Yes, Frampton, Fleetwood Mac, all the big names.

  • Comment Link Glenn Davis Tuesday, February 16, 2016 posted by Glenn Davis

    Remember Grendels Lair early 70's was a bulb ,or 12 pack, and seeing John Hartford and also the Dillards. Glenn D Somerdale NJ

  • Comment Link Art Lazarus Saturday, February 13, 2016 posted by Art Lazarus

    I love trips down Memory Lane. Early and mid-1970s stand-out concerts for me were Dave Mason (opening night of the "new" Tower Theatre), pre-Born-To-Run-Springsteen and many others at the Main Point, esp. Mark-Almond Band, Laura Nyro at the Academy of Music, and Gil Scott-Heron at the Bijou. My all-time favorite concert was Bob Dylan & The Band at the Spectrum (1974 tour) and of course countless others at The Spectrum -- Van Morrison, The Who, CSN&Y, and Spirit, to name a few.

  • Comment Link Steve M Saturday, December 26, 2015 posted by Steve M

    My first concerts were all at The Arena on 46th st in West Philly. While i cannot find documentation of many of these online i will never forget them as i was so young i had to be driven there by my friends parents. Many of these concerts were actually matinees. The list was pretty impressive, including: Big Brother with Janis Joplin, The Who ( with Blues Magoos as opening act- main act was Hermans Hermits which was who i was going to see - The Who ruled the show with smashed instruments at the end.); jini Hendrix ( Are You Experienced tour)

    Hung out a lot at The Electri Factory saw The Doors and Hendrix there).

    I became the music editor for my high school newspaper and went to concerts almost every weekend. I lived near the Main Point so this was my regular venue. I wrote a review for the paper about a very drunken and dissapointing performance by Jerry Jeff Walker and also panned his opening act a a wannabe Bob Dylan performing on acoustic guitar with a harmonica around his neck - some guy named Bruce Springsteen.

  • Comment Link Greg Pirmann Wednesday, December 16, 2015 posted by Greg Pirmann

    You missed the Kaleidoscope on Main Street in Manyunk. It was a converted movie theater with the seats taken out and replaced with overstuffed couches. Saw Tim Buckley, Earth Opera and others there.

  • Comment Link totowatony Tuesday, December 15, 2015 posted by totowatony

    Saw Nite City at the Bijou Cafe > not good, but Manzarek comes out alone for the encore and plays Light my Fire, tells the story how it was written and then the whole place sings while he plays. Magic. Also Les McCann and Eddie Harris Great show and then the band lines up and shakes everybodys hand on the way out. Sorely missed venue.

  • Comment Link Jack pollack Thursday, November 19, 2015 posted by Jack pollack

    Hello, I went to a rock festival in philly, I think in 1968, at the spectrum, al looper was the mc, the dead were there, as well as iron butter fly, and the band who did "born to be wild", and other bands...does anyone remember this show? Is my memory correct? Was it 1968?

  • Comment Link Darrell Williams Saturday, November 7, 2015 posted by Darrell Williams

    I was there the night Grover Washington Jr performed at the Bijou Cafe

  • Comment Link Ray B Saturday, October 10, 2015 posted by Ray B

    The book 'Notes From the Velvet Underground' just came out, which lead me to find this site as I saw them twice at The Trauma. Lou Reed's brooding performing gave me no indication of what a total asshole he is described as in the book, but in retrospect, I guess I'm not surprised.
    Saw some of the other performers mentioned above and went to many of the other venues, also. However, The Electric Factory drew me in the most. I saw some of the names you mentioned, Cream, Chicago, Zappa, 2 nights of Hendrix and many others.
    But my single most memborable concert was standing 10-15 away from Janice Joplin and her contagious high energy performance. How I wish she was still around.

  • Comment Link Bob Kirkpatrick Sunday, September 20, 2015 posted by Bob Kirkpatrick

    Good show I was there that night also, Fugs, Steve Miller Blues Band Mandrake, Lothar too many to mention, meet cute little Doris Geisel there,

  • Comment Link Don Duffey Tuesday, September 8, 2015 posted by Don Duffey

    Remember having a post show Heineken at Bijou upstairs bar, Robert Palmer came up and genuinely thanked us for coming to show. Awesome memory.

  • Comment Link Frankie Sunday, August 23, 2015 posted by Frankie

    I was lucky enough to have been at the New Year's Eve Mother of Invention show at the Trauma. I was sitting in the front row and quickly moved to the second row when Zappa and Mother Ray started slobbering on the girl who was sitting next to me. After the first set I was at the urinal in the men's room, and Zappa came in and used the next urinal. He said, "How ya' doin' man." I also remember seeing the Fugs at the Trauma, another great show.

  • Comment Link Hal Wrobel Saturday, August 1, 2015 posted by Hal Wrobel

    I used to be friends with some of the guys in the bands mentioned here: Kenny Radeloff and Alan Miller (Woody's Truckstop), Larry Gold (Woody's Truckstop and Good News). Where are you now?

  • Comment Link Gary Saluti Saturday, March 7, 2015 posted by Gary Saluti

    Very cool. I used to frequent many of these clubs back in the day. We'll never have such access to so many great performers again.

  • Comment Link Susie Q Monday, May 26, 2014 posted by Susie Q

    This is the coolest website I have ever seen.

Leave a comment

TMORGANONLINE.COM IS UPDATED DAILY!  CHECK IN OFTEN!