Louder Than Love: The Grande Ballroom
June 20, 2012 5:33 AM   Subscribe

Louder Than Love: The Grande Ballroom Story. While not as famous as Bill Graham's Fillmore Theaters, from 1966 to 1970, Detroit's Grande Ballroom hosted national acts such as Cream, The Who, Led Zeppelin, The Grateful Dead, Frank Zappa, Jeff Beck, and Pink Floyd. The brainchild of Russ Gibb, with help from activist John Sinclair, the Grande provided a stage for local bands like The MC5, SRC, The Rationals, The Amboy Dukes, The Frost and the The Stooges. The Grande had it's own psychedelic poster artists Gary Grimshaw and Carl Lundgren. Leni Sinclair took pictures. Local boys from the Grande that went on to national prominence included The Bob Seger System, Alice Cooper, and Grand Funk Railroad. posted by marxchivist (8 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I cannot imagine how freaking loud some of those acts must have been in a room that size.
posted by Ber at 6:50 AM on June 20, 2012

The vocals of this song (Eye of the Storm) by SRC, brings to mind The Shins.
posted by Skygazer at 7:02 AM on June 20, 2012

The ruins of the Grande are used to great effect in MC5: A True Testimonial.
posted by ryanshepard at 7:14 AM on June 20, 2012

Grande Days by Rob Tyner of the MC5 (warning: out of context one of the strangest videos ever)
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 7:38 AM on June 20, 2012 [1 favorite]

(...meaning, when I first saw that video, I had no idea what "Grande" was or that this was Rob Tyner of the MC5. Posts like this bring a LOT of needed context!)
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 7:40 AM on June 20, 2012

I'm far too young to have ever gone to the Grande, but a friend of mine did... and he saved many of the posters.

They're in great shape (museum quality?) and several were featured at the Flint Institute of Arts in 2009.
posted by bricksNmortar at 7:59 AM on June 20, 2012

My parents both often spoke of going to the Grande Ballroom to listen to big bands and to dance. (This was before they even met each other and were dating other people in their youth; the Grande was the place to go on a nice "evening out".)
posted by Oriole Adams at 10:18 AM on June 20, 2012

My dad spent a lot of time at the Grande. Says he jammed onstage with Rare Earth. This is the same guy who pulled out his old MC5 and Amboy Dukes records for me when I was a kid. It was hard for me to rebel against my parents knowing my dad was so rock and roll.
posted by Maaik at 12:22 PM on June 20, 2012

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