Fifty Years Ago: The “Dirty But Cool” Stones Cause A Rock ‘N’ Roll Riot In Hartford
It was the night Connecticut witnessed first-hand the frenzy that was The British Invasion.
Exactly 50 years ago this week, June 27th 1966, The Rolling Stones played in front of 8,000 screaming teen fans at Dillon Stadium in Hartford. For a while it seemed as if it would be an easy night for police officers. For a while anyway.
At around 10:20 p.m. as the first chord of the Stones latest #1 single (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction' was struck the sound of screaming teenage girls erupted and the double barricades between the stage and the fans were being torn away. That's when the electricity to the amplifiers was cut, the police rushed in and started carrying those same screaming girls (some barefooted) off the field while fighting off their fist-swinging, bare-chested boyfriends along the way.
With Mick Jagger knowing the show was coming to an abrupt end he threw his microphone stand out into the crowd before he and the rest of the band headed off stage. They quickly jumped into their waiting car and disappeared into the night.
The Hartford Courant had a reporter there that night. She asked fans why they loved the Stones so much. One 16-year old from Norwich said it was because they're "Good but grubby - they're dirty but cool - they're tough." Dirty but cool. Gotta love it. Read the rest of the show's review HERE.
I have co-worker at my full time job who was at that concert. Brian Cameron is his name. Brian often tells me about all the great concerts he went to back in the 60s and this is right up there on the list of ones to remember. He was 14 back on that summer night and told me the price for a general admission ticket was five dollars. That's right...Five dollars! Brian and his buddies didn't have to pay anyway. He readily admitted to me that he and his friends from West Hartford Leroy Harris, Ken Maloy and Pete Standford snuck over the fence to see the show. I'm guessing there is a statute of limitations on something like that so they can rest easy.
One last interesting note on this show - the opening act that night was a band called The McCoys featuring a young Rick Derringer on guitar. Derringer would later go on to build a successful career as a solo artist in the 70s thanks to his hit song "Rock & Roll Hoochie Koo". Derringer also happens to be one of our special musical guests at the upcoming "Bacon & Brew Fest" at City Center Danbury on Saturday, July 16th. I think we need to ask Rick for a good behind-the-scenes story from that night!