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43 Years Ago: Aerosmith Plays First Concert

Aerosmith
Aerosmith / It Books

The gymnasium at Miscoe Hill School in tiny Mendon, Mass. (pop: 5,839) may seem like an inauspicious place for rock legends to get their start, but it’s where Aerosmith played their first-ever show in 1970.

The new band got the gig because Joe Perry‘s mother, who worked at a nearby school, knew someone at Miscoe Hill, which was then known as Nipmuc Regional High School, and helped set it up. At the time, Ray Tabano was on rhythm guitar. He would be replaced by Brad Whitford a year later. Tickets for the show cost about a dollar.

“I remember being blown away by their sound,” said Roy Spindel, who attended the show. “When they were playing, it seemed obvious they were going to go some place. All I could think of was, ‘This is what it must feel like when the Rolling Stones play.’ They sounded like they had been together forever.”

Even at that early stage, the band were finding ways to get into trouble. According to reports, Steven Tyler grabbed a school shirt from the locker room and wore it onstage. And, try not to be shocked, but they may also have snuck in some alcohol.

Next: Joe Perry's New Mustache

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