11/15/70 Washington Ave. Armory, Albany
BOMB SCARE, PERFORMERS PLAGUE CONCERT
Albany, NY (AP) - An acid-rock concert turned sour Sunday evening for some 4,000 young people when a bomb scare forced them out into cold rainy streets and the featured performers disappeared before playing a note.
George Frieje of Zebra Enterprises, the local promoters of the concert, said The Grateful Dead, an eight-piece rock band, failed to return to the armory where the concert was being held after police searched for the bomb that a caller claimed was hidden in the building.
Frieje said the group had received a $10,000 guarantee before the show started. He said other performers kept the show going until 2 a.m. today but that the more than 4,000 people in the audience had paid $5 each to hear "The Dead" until 4 a.m.
(from the Troy Times-Record, 16 November 1970)
SUNDAY'S CONCERT: THE DEAD DEPART
Sunday night was very strange. Jane, Bunny, and I arrived on time and ready to go. I remember that clearly, sitting down in those folding chairs in the monster Washington Avenue Armory.
Then, the clear image of a loud A.M. radio dj announcing EUCLID, a local group. They sent out loud sounds, and danced around on the stage, but sorry to say, it sounded to me like some stoned Hell's Angels doing a poor imitation of the DEAD and LED ZEPLIN. They carried a lot on volume but they were the local band, and visions of Rolling Stones successes danced in their heads. Their songs were indistinguishable from each other, and each took years to end. You kept thinking that they were finished and that you were that much closer to the DEAD, but they weren't and you weren't.
I spoke with the equipment man for the DEAD, and he promised to try and arrange an interview.
Then, finally, Pacific Gas and Electric. I'd seen them before, and I remember having a great time, but that's all I remembered. Same again. They were really tight, but no lasting impression. I do remember that they played "Are You Ready?"
Then someone walked to the mike and said, "We're having electrical problems and we have to clear the area. No reason for panic, just evacuate. Come back in an hour, and you won't need tickets."
I immediately knew it was a bomb scare. A lot of people proceeded to call impoverished friends to tell them it was a free concert.
When we returned, I again spoke with the DEAD's equipment man:
"The DEAD split for New York."
"Aren't they gonna play?"
"Not with all this shit going on. I watched them carry out the equipment."
It was midnight. On came Buddy Miles. No announcement yet.
I was waiting around, wondering how the crowd would react. At this point, I knew that they didn't know. Miles asked the audience to get ready to go through big changes. "Here it comes," I thought. No, he played "Changes."
As for his performance, what can I say? You were there or you weren't. Very simply, Buddy Miles spaced me right out the window. He was fantastic.
If anybody could tell the crowd about the DEAD, he could. He had them on their feet, blindly following every sound.
Finally he told them, and did a few more numbers. Then the lights went on and it was over. A lot of people felt that Buddy Miles alone was worth the five dollars. A lot of people still wanted to hear the DEAD, but felt powerless and left. A few hundred stayed on to shout at the state, "We want the DEAD" over and over. They also broke chairs.
Busting chairs, like calling in bomb threats, is pretty silly and kind of sick; but I would suggest that anyone who felt that they didn't get what they paid for should write, call, demand money, demand the DEAD, boycott Zebra concerts, organize. Zebra productions isn't about to leave town - they have too many more concerts. If enough people are mad, they'll have to act.
I decided to make the most of things for the moment, and Bunny, Koz, and I left the concert, skipping into the rain, stoned on Buddy Miles.
(by Jeff Burger, from the Albany Student Press, 17 November 1970)
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11/20/70 Palestra, University of Rochester
23 SEIZED AT ROCK SHOW FREED
Twenty-three young men arrested outside a rock concert at the University of Rochester Palestra late Friday and early Saturday were released without bail to their parents yesterday by City Court Judge Wilmer Patlow.
The father of one youth put up $25 bail, but Judge Patlow later returned it, saying he wanted to treat all 23 the same.
The 23 are alleged gate crashers who tried to sneak into the Palestra to hear a concert by a rock group, the "Grateful Dead." A UR spokesman said none of the 23 was a UR student.
The arrests [were] made in groups by UR security police between 9 p.m. Friday, when the concert began, and 3:30 a.m. yesterday, when it ended. They were turned over to city police after UR police signed complaints against them.
Charges ranged from loitering, criminal trespass and lewdness to possession of dangerous drugs and possession of a stolen credit card...
[omitted names & addresses]
(from the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle, 22 November 1970)
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11/21/70 Sargent Gym, Boston University
HUB POLICE DISPERSE ROCK FANS
Several thousand young persons massed at the BU Bridge and on Commonwealth Avenue last night, many of them disgruntled at their failure to "crash" a concert at Boston University's Sargent Gymnasium by The Grateful Dead, a rock group.
The crowd dispersed after 36 patrol cars were dispatched to the scene. Five persons were arrested, two were reported injured.
Several thousand had gathered outside the gymnasium despite the fact that its 2200 seats had been sold out almost two weeks ago.
Those arrested and their charges are as follows:
[names & addresses omitted]
...attempting to rescue a prisoner and inciting to riot;
...possession of marijuana and assault and battery on a policeman;
...disorderly person and possession of marijuana;
Many in the crowd had attempted to get to the concert earlier with counterfeit tickets.
The crowd on the BU Bridge dispersed within minutes of the call for reinforcements from the detail of 15 policemen near the concert site.
(from the Boston Globe, 22 November 1970)
PHONY TICKETS CAUSE CLASH AT BU GYM
BOSTON (UPI) - Thousands of persons who came to Boston University Saturday night to attend a rock concert became unruly when they couldn't get in because someone had sold counterfeit tickets.
With so many tickets - real and bogus - sold, the Sargent Gymnasium soon filled to capacity, the overflow backing up along the street outside.
Police said the problem was created by the phony tickets to the concert given by a rock group known as the Grateful Dead.
Those who couldn't get in became irate and allegedly manhandled the security guards. One guard was injured but it was not immediately determined if that was brought on by the ruckus or by an unrelated incident.
Several thousand students massed along Commonwealth Avenue which runs in front of BU, creating a huge traffic jam. City police were called in to help unsnarl the mess and about 50 members of the Boston Police Tactical Squad were nearby in a parking lot.
However, when the situation eased the police left.
(from the Lowell Sun (MA), 22 November 1970)
The Hartford Courant (CT) reported:
... Police said some members of the overflow crowd, disgruntled at having purchased bogus tickets, finally charged the door, injuring the gatekeeper.
A policeman on duty arrested two persons. When he took them to a police box, about 100 shouting youths followed.
The policeman summoned reinforcements, and the crowd dispersed when two dozen squad cars arrived.
The crowd caused a traffic tieup for hours on busy Commonwealth Avenue...
("Melee Started by Rock Fans in Ticket Fraud," 23 November 1970)