If you’re someone who enjoys the music scene so much, then you might have attended some that topped the records for the biggest concert ever. This is a compilation of probably the most epic, highly attended concerts of all time.
10. Blockbuster Rock Fest 1997
This concert featured 16 highly renowned performers of the time including Matchbox Twenty, the Wallflowers, Counting Crows, Collective Soul, and No Doubt. It was held at the Texas Motor Speedway, sold about 385,000 tickets, and lasted for about 15 hours.
9. Woodstock Concert 1969
Legendary artists like Santana, Janis Joplin, Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Grateful Dead, The Who and Jimi Hendrix have drawn almost 400,000 hippies in a supposed-to-be three-day long pop festival on a field in Bethel, New York. This event, which was recorded to be one of the highly attended concerts of all time, could be considered as an accident. The organizers of the said event were initially targeting just 50,000 people to raise funds in building a music studio in Wallkill, New York. But the support of hundreds of thousands of hippies made this concert a huge hit that it resulted to two more series of Woodstock Festival.
8. Toronto SARS Benefit Concert of 2003
SARS or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome was a viral respiratory disease that originated in southern China and spread to almost 37 countries in the world including a great part of Asia and Toronto, Canada. In July 30, 2003, city officials of Toronto decided to put up a benefit concert to revive its then failing tourism economy due to the effect of the SARS virus. Famous Canadian bands such as Rush, Blue Rodeo, and Tea Party performed in front of almost 450,000 people. Also, international rock bands and performers such as the Rolling Stones, Sarah McLachlan, Avril Lavigne, Sum 41, and Justin Timberlake supported the benefit concert by performing.
7. Simon & Garfunkel in Central Park
Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel’s second reunion concert in 1981 was held for the benefit of the redevelopment and maintenance of then dilapidated New York Central Park. The concert was for free and was broadcasted live on HBO. Among the songs performed by the famous duo were the classics “Mrs. Robinson, “The Sound of Silence”, and “The Boxer”. The night concluded with the song “Late in the Evening” with the audience, surprisingly, dancing to it. It was just an overwhelming night for the fans of phenomenal duo, but the much demanded permanent reunion did not happen.
6. Isle of Wight Festival
Tickets were sold out on the first day of release for this biggest concert held in United Kingdom. In 1970, about 600,000 people came to witness renowned bands and performing artists like Leonard Cohen, The Who, The Doors, and Jimi Hendrix who, unfortunately, lost his life shortly after. Although it was a sold out event, the area where it was held can be viewed from a hill and, therefore, people who didn’t want to pay for tickets can still watch it from a good angle.
The event, however, was said to be badly organized. Activists and menaces crowded the area resulting to a lot of troubles in the course of the event.
5. Summer Jam at Watkins Glen
In 1973, more than 600,000 rock fans came to the Watkins Glen Grand Prix Raceway to witness the biggest rock concert of the century. This event have sold about 137,000 tickets. However, people will later find out that the concert was for free and, therefore, drawing more crowd in the area. The famous rock bands Grateful Dead, the Allman Brothers, and the Band played all night long concluding the event with their cover of “Johnny B. Goode”. With all the three bands playing all throughout the event, it was often regarded as the greatest heavy metal concert of all time.
4. Steve Wozniak’s 1983 US Festival
One of Apple’s co-founder, Steve Wozniak, sponsored and organized the US Festival back in 1982 to give back to the Apple Computer’s community. In two consecutive years, famous performers from different genres such as David Bowie, U2, Scorpion, Motley Crue, and Ozzy Osbourne gathered in Glen Helen Regional Park near Devore, San Bernardino, California to perform in front of hundreds of thousand Californian. In its second year, which was the weekend of 1983 Memorial Day, the festival gathered around 670,000 people.
3. Garth Brooks in Central Park
Garth Brooks is one of the most prominent country singers in America, and is one of the few performers that was granted permission to hold a concert in New York Central Park. In August 7, 1997, Brooks was able to pull in about 750,000 New Yorkers in the park to listen to his hits. It was also a free-for-all concert and was broadcasted live on HBO. To top it off, Brooks gave the audience a real rare treat by having Billy Joel and Don McLean sing with him.
2. New York Philharmonic in Central Park
Celebrating the re-dedication of the Statue of Liberty, about 800,000 people attended the traditional New York Philharmonic Orchestra’s performance in New York’s Central Park on the summer of 1986. It was the largest crowd a classical music recital have ever had—truly worthy to be the second biggest concert ever.
1. Rod Stewart at Copacabana Beach
An estimate of 3.5 million people crowded the prominent Beach of Copacabana in Rio in the eve of December 31st 1994, making this concert on top of our list. Instead of performing in a stadium or big football fields, like what other artists do, famous British rock star Rod Stewart opted to stage his free for all concert in Copacabana Beach to accommodate the poor people of Rio. Just imagine counting down to New Year with the Brazilian crowd and the music of Rod Stewart—it was definitely a night to cherish.
Everyone remembers their first concerts. These are considered to be one of the memories to be cherished the most. If you have attended one of the biggest concert ever, then you have been a great part of the music history and, perhaps, other people’s memory.