FILLMORE EAST, 1969
I read Jeff Spurrier’s page of Stats (May 11), which was very good, very informative trivially--except for one flaw in “A Week of Bummers.”
Pete Townshend from the Who was arrested for assaulting a police officer at the Fillmore East in New York, but it wasn’t May 14, 1969. It was May 16, Friday night at the early show.
Actually, the fire was next door and the smoke drifted into the Fillmore air ducts and walls. I was part of the outside crowd control team (Bill Graham’s Finest), we were waiting for the early show to get out so the late show could go in. We saw billows of smoke and turned in the alarm. The fire department didn’t get there for an hour.
The crowd outside was humongous. We had to get the house out. We (Bill’s staff) were commended for handling the situation without any injuries. Anyway, Townshend was arrested for kicking this guy off the stage when he started yelling to the crowd. Later we learned that we were in no danger; the show could have gone on. The charges were later dropped, the late show was postponed to Sunday. All in all, an exciting nite at the Fillmore.
Former Fillmore East security man