Friday, January 19, 2007

New Haven Coliseum, 1972-2007

It was a small-city arena that never hosted a major-league team. In fact, it was never completed. The New Haven Coliseum was to have had an exhibition hall and street-level stores, but ended up as a rectangular seating bowl topped by a bare-bones parking garage.

Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley performed there. Pat Benatar and Van Halen released concert DVDs from there. The Grateful Dead performed there 11 times between 1977 and 1984, and the Dick's Picks Volume 25 contains most of their 5/10/78 concert. My first Dead show was there (17-minute Uncle John's Band), as was my last Yes concert (the 90125 tour) and the second of two Zappa shows I saw in 1984 (the first Apostrophe of the tour and a nice encore including WPLJ and Sharleena).

What's left of the Coliseum--the parking structure and a small stepped hint of the seating bowl--will be imploded tomorrow morning.


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