It is frequently referred to as the world's loudest concert. Not because of the decibel level of the speakers, but because of the audience. In fact, some people could only hear the first two notes of the song before the crowd drowned out the band. Concert tickets were only about $2.20 at the time. The promoters sold tickets for this concert for an outrageous price at the time, $5.50, and they still sold out!
Elvis Presley, International Hotel, July 31, 1969
The show may have influenced Elvis to become the man he is today. Strung with nerves and a lot to prove, as this was Elvis's first paid show in months, and to raise the stakes even higher, the last time Vegas saw Elvis was infamously the biggest flop Elvis has ever had in his career. At the April 1956 New Frontier, Elvis went from being the show's star to merely an opening act in less than two weeks. However, running it for four weeks at full capacity in Vegas certainly helped bring this star back to the top, and may have cemented Elvis's name in history.
In many cases, our failures are what define us. The phoenix rises from the burning ashes to take its place. Nirvana was destroyed by fire on August 16, 1990. This was a year before the release of "Nevermind," and two months before David Grohl joined the band. Nirvana was just one of the hundreds of opening acts at the time. However, after being booed off the stage, Kurt Cobain gained a new sense of determination. "Never again," Kurt said quietly.
Kiss (with Rush), Sahara Space Centre, April 29, 1975.
Another concert that most likely accelerated Kiss's evolution into the band they are today. No one could have predicted that this young rock band would do well in a venue like the Sahara Space Center at the time. But it was a challenge that Garry Naseef, a long-time Vegas concert promoter, was eager to accept. He obtained footage of the band performing, complete with make-up, pyrotechnics, and blood, and aired about 20 commercials per day on Channel 5. Needless to say, the show was a success, with each performance selling out 4,500 seats.
Grateful Dead (with Santana), Las Vegas Ice Palace, March 29, 1969.
In the midst of the Dead's psychedelic expression was a show that would reverberate throughout the music scene for years. Some claim that if you look hard enough, you might still be able to find this bootleg recording of the show. Despite being hissy and incomplete, this recording became iconic among fans. The early cosmic sound of Lovers of the Dead will be preserved, all the way back to the Ice Palace.
The Doors, Las Vegas Ice Palace, 1969
This was the year Jim Morrison returned to the United States after being charged in Miami with lewd and lascivious behaviour, profanity, public indecency, and drunkenness. The pressure on Jim to behave was at an all-time high, with the district attorney going on national television and saying that if Jim Morrison didn't behave, he would arrest him and the content promoter right then and there. It was a tense show, as one would expect with so many police officers surrounding the stage.
Few people had as much influence on the development of Las Vegas as Frank Sinatra. Being credited as a major influencer in transforming this desert town into the Vegas we all know and love today. Frank Sinatra's legacy will live on through countless hit albums, sold-out concerts, and a successful film career. When he passed away in 1998, the lights in Sin City were turned off in his honour.
Celine Dion, Caesars Palace, 2003
Many consider Celine Dion to be the most successful artist in Las Vegas since Elvis. This show was unlike any other, with a colosseum-style venue built specifically for her performance. What many regarded as a "risk bet" has since become one of the most successful show runs in history.
Vegas is well-known for being a notable entertainment destination. With a rich history that many people treasure and the ability to make or break an artist, what happens in Vegas doesn't always stay in Vegas, as evidenced by these concerts that have gone down in history.