Music History

Graphic: When big bands play unusual venues

There’s no rule that says a band has to play a proper music venue. In fact, you don’t even need electricity to drive a concert. Cameron Gordon at Completely Ignored has done some research into times when big bands came to Toronto and ended up playing unusual venues.

Remember when Green Day played a back alley? Spirtualized at the CN Tower? The White Stripes at a YMCA? (Go here to get a better look; the font is rather small).

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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2 thoughts on “Graphic: When big bands play unusual venues

  • Can the Shangri-La Hotel be considered an unusual venue after hosting that many acts? I’d say after 5-6, it’s now an official venue.

    • Out here in Nanaimo, BC, back in April 2005 it was a nice surprise to have Death From Above play my town. Weird bit was they played at a non-profit hall with max total capacity of 240 people. No stage, no roadies, a couple “security” guys at the door taking tickets. Literally stood within a couple feet from Jesse and Sebastien and every couple songs they used their bass and drum sticks to push the crowd back a couple feet. Great show, weird venue, worth every penny of the $10 ticket price.


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