36 Years Ago Tonight: The Kingdome Rocked!

It’s hard to believe that it’s been 12 years since we blew up the Kingdome, Seattle’s multi-purpose domed stadium which held its first-ever rock show tonight in 1976, with Paul McCartney and Wings. The ‘Dome opened in March of 1976 to bring  the National Football League and Major League Baseball back to our corner of the country. It was demolished in 2000 to make way for the new Seahawks Stadium (now Century Link Field, or “The Clink”) that was a condition  of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen saving Seattle’s NFL franchise from an eventual move to Los Angeles by then-owner California real-estate developer Ken Behring. The “Wings Over America” tour marked the first live performances for Paul McCartney on U.S. soil since the Beatles’ last tour 10 years prior and the Kingdome show was the biggest of the tour, with 5 songs from the stop making it into the 1980 Miramax concert film Rockshow.

” This was back in the day before most shows were reserved seating. If you wanted to get close tot he stage, you got there early.  A lot of people camped out overnight. But I had reserved seats…I was on the 200 level, at the opposite end of the Kingdome from the stage.  The sound was terrible in the echo-dome, and Paul McCartney and Wings looked like ants unless you watched the giant TV screen. Watching video of that show later, the band was incredibly good but the Kingdome was just an awful place for a rock show. I felt like I’d paid 10 bucks to see ants play Paul’s songs on TV in a parking garage.” –Scott Vanderpool

Did you go?  Do you have a story from this show?  Share them in the comments section below!

Wings 1976 Kingdome Set list:

  1. “Venus And Mars”/”Rock Show”
  2. “Jet”
  3. “Let Me Roll It”
  4. “Spirits of Ancient Egypt”
  5. “Medicine Jar”
  6. “Maybe I’m Amazed”
  7. “Call Me Back Again”
  8. “Lady Madonna”
  9. “The Long and Winding Road”
  10. “Live and Let Die”
  11. “Picasso’s Last Words (Drink to Me)”
  12. “Richard Cory” (A Simon and Garfunkel cover)
  13. “Bluebird”
  14. “I’ve Just Seen a Face”
  15. “Blackbird”
  16. “Yesterday”
  17. “You Gave Me the Answer”
  18. “Magneto and Titanium Man”
  19. “Go Now” ( A Moody Blues song sung by former member Denny Laine)
  20. “My Love”
  21. “Listen to What the Man Said”
  22. “Let ‘Em In”
  23. “Time to Hide”
  24. “Silly Love Songs”
  25. “Beware My Love”
  26. “Letting Go”
  27. “Band on the Run”
  28. “Hi, Hi, Hi”
  29. “Soily”

One Comment

  1. Stan E. Delo says:

    Hi Scott-

    I didn’t catch the Wings show, but I did attend the Jeff Beck with Aerosmith show sort of… Jeff Beck is still one of my favorites of all time, and I didn’t know a lot about Aerosmith at the time, but I was very impressed with their set.

    I say sort of, because at the time I was working on Vashon Island, and living on Capitol Hill, commuting back and forth. On the day of the show, I hot-footed it down to the ferry dock, only to discover that the ferry workers had gone on strike a few hours earlier, and the ferries weren’t running !?!! About 2 hours later, they started running again, and I hustled home, hoping that my friend Joe would give me a ride to the show, as I was leaving my car on the Island, and bussing back and forth to Fauntleroy.

    When I got home, Joe wasn’t there but his car was, and he had left the keys on the kitchen table… Yep, you guessed it, I left him a note, and stole his car for the night, in his old 1961 Mud Shark Plymouth. I got to the show just in time to watch Jeff Beck walk off the stage after his set. Rats!! Aerosmith put on a great show though, but you sure are right about the sound being hopelessly muddled by the echoes, and I was in the cheap seats up high, so I had to just watch them on the moniters to be able to see anything at all.

    Several years later though, I caught Jeff Beck and Santana at the Gorge at George, which was great! Not a bad seat in the place with great sound, and Jeff was as flawless as ever.


  2. Rick Strizic says:

    I was there right in front of the stage..GREAT show. Where can we find the video of the show. I know there was one made because I saw it years ago on H.B.O. or possibly Showtime. Would sure love to get a copy. {Please let me know if there is a VHS or DVD available. Thanks!

    1. 30 songs from 4 different shows were released in 1980 as a DVD called “Rockshow”….5 of the songs are from the 1976 Seattle show. You can also watch them on YouTube for free, but I didn’t tell you that.

  3. Jay says:

    I have many stories of the King Dome. From Wings, Led, Heart, Frampton, Eagles, Kzok Awards and many more just no time tonight. I also still have my tickets. I also hauled away the seating from the Dome b 4 they bombed it!!! Oh Oh I said the B word am I bad sorry big Brother!!! Many Memories. Maybe come back tomorrow and share a few!!!!

    1. Share away, Jay! And don’t worry, we won’t tell Homeland security.

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