From the Fillmore to the Beacon: The Allman Brothers Band

Posted on: March 15th, 2013 at 12:09 pm by
This image has been archived or removed.

Remember that Boogie back to the Fillmore East?

On June 27, 1971, after arguably the most influential three years in the history of rock n roll, the Fillmore East took its last bow. This comparably small concert hall at 105 Second Avenue left proverbial footprints large enough to rival those of Radio City and the Beacon; after you read this, you’ll know why.

Well, being that it is currently the Allman Brothers Band’s annual run (since 1989 and save for 2010 when Cirque de Soleil kicked ’em out) at the Beacon Theater, I figured a tie-in was necessary.

An excerpt of a letter I wrote in 2011 to the Peach Corps (yes, Peach, not Peace):

…Walking back into the Beacon again last week was an indescribable feeling. We (my dad and I) turned to each other and said “welcome home”…on Saturday, we went to the the building that once was the Fillmore East, stood outside, sang “Back Where It All Began” as loud as we could. Sure, it’s a bank now and people thought we were kind of nuts, but we had to pay tribute to the 40th anniversary of the Fillmore East album!

The Allmans have so much history in NYC, but the Fillmore East was only open for 3 years so where, oh where is their history?

How about we leave Lower East Side and take a field trip to the Upper West Side?

Say hello to a home away from home, the once Vaudeville, 2,894-seat, three-tiered Beacon Theater.

Some fast facts from their website:

  • The Beacon Theatre is the “older sister” to Radio City Music Hall. Both legendary venues were the “brainchild” of Samuel “Roxy” Rothafel, the great theatrical impresario and visionary of his time.
  • Roxy Rothafel had identical dreams for both theaters. He believed that both the Beacon Theatre and Radio City Music Hall should become an “International Music Hall” theater, to present live entertainment acts and present cultural and popular events.
  • Designed by Chicago architect Walter Ahlschlager in the Art Deco style, the Beacon Theatre opened in 1929 as a forum for vaudeville acts, musical productions, drama, opera, and movies.
  • Known for its flawless acoustics, the Beacon has been a favored New York City stop for top acts since the Roaring Twenties. Remarkably, the original sound-system still provides near-perfect acoustics today.
  • In 1979, the historic venue was designated a national landmark and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • A 1986 proposal to convert the 2,600-seat, three-tiered theatre into a disco was blocked when a judge ruled the change would irreparably damage the building’s architecture.
  • The Allman Brothers hold an annual rite of spring concert series at the Beacon Theatre known as “The Beacon Run.” Since 1989, they have performed 173 shows at the Beacon.

And now for the best part; The Beacon in pictures:

This gallery has been removed.

If you want to see more of the band or the audience (or me and my dad), just ask. As far as this piece goes, showing you the the architecture and the interior from my POV because it is breathtaking (the interior or my POV, your choice).

In 2008, the Beacon underwent a complete restoration. It had been untouched since it was built in 1929. Check out this slideshow  from The New York Times documenting that transformation. Pretty dope pics.

Ok.

We can venture back to Loisaida now. Thanks for taking a trip with me.

Recent Stories

Work Underway at New Orchard Street Home of Scarr’s Pizza

Scarr’s Pizza is moving up the street. And the work has already begun. As previously reported, owner Scarr Pimentel applied to remove and transfer the liquor license to 35 Orchard (aka 34 Allen) in what was formerly the Lam & Associates insurance office. (A building now shared with Cheeky Sandwiches.) Community Board 3 signaled its […]

Pandemic Pitch: Essex Crossing Tries to Lease its Office Space

One of the crown jewels of the Essex Crossing mega project – namely, 350,000 square-feet of Class A commercial space – is also an Achilles Heel of sorts. And now, a first look. The Commercial Observer spilled ink this week on the challenges of renting this office space during pandemic times, even referring to the […]

Weeks-Long Closure of Nathan Straus Playground was Due to Parks Department ‘Oversight’

Until yesterday, the Nathan Straus Playground was locked up, leaving the community without a popular public amenity for three weeks. The playground, which abuts the Attorney Street cul-de-sac, had been closed without notice or communication from the city. Though the adjacent school, PS140, did have access. When reached for comment yesterday, the Parks Department admitted […]

Someone Sliced Away the Pride Flag from Sugar Sweet Sunshine

It’s not all rainbows for Sugar Sweet Sunshine. Already contending with a spate of garbage dumping on its doorstep, the sweets shop just lost its Pride flag in an apparent hate-driven action. It appears someone snipped the rainbow gay pride flag from the storefront of 126 Rivington Street. We’re told that it had hung here […]

Start of $1.45B East River Park Resiliency Project Delayed

The planned demolition of East River Park for the new coastal resiliency project is delayed, the city recently revealed. The initial scope of the $1.45 billion East Side Coastal Resiliency project pegged a start date of September 2020, when areas of the coastline would be roped off ahead of construction. That was the plan through […]