The Led Zeppelin Riot of 1975

January 6, 1975 – By the mid-seventies, Classic Rock may have reached its zenith.  Bands now played in  stadiums or massive amphitheaters to tens of thousands of fans.  “Cool” bands could only be heard on FM radio and vinyl album covers were sophisticated, and artistic, and as much a part of the experience as the music inside.  Concerts were full of smoke and elaborate lights shows and fireworks captivated the crowd.  Led Zeppelin was one of the most successful and popular bands of the era.  Their lives of excess were the stuff of legend.  In 1975 they released their double album Physical Graffiti and the band embarked on an 18-month world tour including North America. On the night of January 5, thousands of Boston fans lined up in the bitter cold to purchase tickets for a February concert (Prices?  $6.50 to $8.50).   Sometime after midnight, someone either opened the door from the inside, or someone managed to break into the Boston Garden.  The fans rioted inside causing a great deal of damage.  Enraged, Boston Mayon Kevin White cancelled the concert and banned Led Zeppelin from appearing in Boston for 5 years.  Sadly, the band never played there again.  Led Zeppelin skipped Boston in their 1977 tour and the band broke up after the death of drummer John Bonham in 1980.

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