Rolling Stones Fans at The Spectrum 1975

Rolling Stones crowd at The Spectrum on June 30, 1975. Two changeover crew workers are visible in the crowd. Mark Huckle on left, and Bob Leone at right. © ROGER BARONE

Rolling Stones crowd at The Spectrum on June 30, 1975. Two changeover crew workers are visible in the crowd. Mark Huckel on left, and Bob Leone at right. © ROGER BARONE 1975

Rolling Stones: The Spectrum (June 30, 1975)

~ by photosfromphilly on June 17, 2009.

9 Responses to “Rolling Stones Fans at The Spectrum 1975”

  1. In the summer of 1972 I was living with my parents. I had no car, no girl, no money and no job; I was lost.

    Most days I would don the uniform of that era: jeans, colored T-shirt, converse sneakers (no socks) and shoulder length hair and head to the corner of 17th & Oregon where friends of mine were similarly circumstanced.

    One day, some other friends approached us yelling “CHANGEOVER! CHANGEOVER! Go down to the Spectrum,” they said, and say CHANGEOVER and you’ll get in.

    We soon learned that there were jobs to be had and walked (The Broad Street subway only went to Oregon Ave in those days) to the Spectrum, said the magic [CHANGEOVER] word and not only got in, but were hired too.

    Thus began my three-year stint on the Changeover Crew, one of the most entertaining jobs I ever had. It began just before the Stones played there during the summer of 1972 and ended shortly after the 1975 concert pictured above.

    I remember working the day after the ’72 show and finding a large pile of the famous red Spectrum chairs mangled and crumpled near the front of the stage. “That must have been some show,” I thought to myself.

    The best thing about working Changeover was the eclectic demographics of the group and the unpredictability of what you might be doing each night. I was immediately tagged as a “longhair” by the crew bosses who were, themselves military veterans.

    The “longhairs” made up a good portion of the crew, the other large group consisted of Navy and Marine Corps personnel (I never could figure out how they were able to work there…didn’t they have a job?) from the two bases in South Philly. This provided for some intense group dynamics in the workforce.

    The work itself was basic manual labor: you were either lifting or pushing something heavy. It was the sideshow that was so rewarding.

    For me, it was everything from seeing Neil Young wandering aimlessly around the stage by himself with a can of Pepsi hours after his concert [1973] while we were breaking things down, to having Alvin Lee bum a cigarertte off me (“Do you have a fag?”) to trying to get the Grateful Dead to play touch football with us instead of doing their sound check, to leading a very stoned Grace Slick out of the boiler room and down the hall to Paul Kanter who had a worried look on his face, to doing a Mick Jagger impersonation on that Lotus Stage hours before the Stones arrived in 1975, to seeing our Director of Operations Ernie Thompson stand up to Bill Grahmm so that we could watch the Bob Dylan show from behind the stage, to standing beside the Stanley Cup and trying to read all of the names while being told to roll out a rubber mat on the ice so that it could be presented to Bobby Clarke and Bernie Parent just as the clock ticked down on the Flyers’ first Championship and seeing Moose Dupont jump into Fred Shero’s arms and cry like a baby.

    There are many Changeover stories out there and these come immediately to mind.

    • Really enjoyed reading this. Ernie Thompson was my dad. What a giant pain in the ass he was, but he sure loved that job.

      • Its funny that you descibe him as a pain in the ass. That was pretty much what we thought at the time, but what a character!

        I was there when your Dad was first hired. He walked on the hockey ice with some sort of spiked golf shoes and someone had to tell him that it was prohibited.

        I remember when he fired a friend of mine. I thought he was doing it just to show the rest of us who was boss and when I came to my friend’s defense your Dad almost fired me.

        But then there was the time he reserved an entire section of great seats, all free and all for us when the Grateful Dead where there (1974).

      • Bob, your comments are great….Thanks…Can you imagine Ernie’s daughter writing here? What a blast….I think I remember her as a little blonde haired child.

  2. Hey Bob, Longhair? yeah I remember that. Hope you are well.
    All the best!
    Mark Huckel

    • Hi Mark:
      I’m well, hope you are, too. That’s right, you do have long hair in the above photo.

      I remember I got to know one of the marines who was working with us at the time. His last name was Ahearn. He told me that he couldn’t wait until he was discharged so he could grow his hair down to his ass!

  3. Mel & Joe were the “Navy Guys” we drank alot of beer on break’s with Bon Kane rememeber?

  4. “Rolling Stones Fans at The Spectrum 1975 | Shooting Stars:
    My Spectrum Memories in Photos and Words” Horizontal Blinds genuinely got me personally simply hooked on ur blog!

    I reallywill certainly be back again even more regularly.
    Thank you ,Merle

    • Hi Merle,

      Although your jacket is similar, it’s not the same “official” tour jacket that the crew was given. Your jacket is denim and I believe the Stones’ jackets were a different fabric, but also the Stones’ jackets had a belt and a tapered elastic waste band. I always wanted to get one of these and about eight years ago a member of the road crew sold one on EBAY. It cost about 110 dollars. I really liked that jacket, and still regret not bidding for it. It was a very rare item. The person also sold some tour itinerary books.

      Thanks for your compliments and I’m glad you’re enjoying them. I’ll post some photos of Jagger wearing the jacket, so you’ll see it better.

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