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The Who Re-Viewed Part 9


ARENAS ARE WHAT YOU MAKE OF THEM

I don’t love the arena experience, which is one reason I only sporadically check in with The Who these days. (It’s also why I flew to Chicago in 1999, to see them at the House of Blues, a more intimate show than I ever imagined I might witness) But some arenas are better than others. The Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport is smaller than most – I reckoned it at 10,000 capacity, about half Madison Square Garden – and for whatever reason, ridiculously lax with security. I joined a number of other Who fans in a stairwell not far from the stage, where the view was excellent, the sound just perfect, and the shared camaraderie of standing among others who also preferred not to sit rendered it somewhat closer to a hall. In comparison to The Rainbow in May 1979, a much smaller venue but one where I was restricted to my balcony seat, I had more freedom of movement. The drummer was better in Bridgeport, too.

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