Thursday, March 04, 2010

Cheetah Club / Aragon Ballroom, 1106 Lawrence Avenue, Chicago, IL: Performance List 1968 - 1973

The Aragon Ballroom was built in 1926 was originally a famous dance ballroom that used to broadcast the orchestra music on radio. Many of the top big bands played at the Aragon. In the early 60’s ice skating and boxing matches were held at the Aragon. In 1966 the Aragon became the Cheetah Club and began holding pop concerts as a disco. In June of 1968 the club returned to its original name of the Aragon and held rock, pop and Latin concerts until October 1970. Concerts were stopped at the Aragon due to security and drug problems. Rock and pop concerts began again in 1972. Info and shows list taken from terrific Greg Vick's Tour Archive website.

- Cheetah Club -

January 5-7, 1968: The American Breed / The Troys / The Y-Nots

February 9-11, 1968: The Human Beinz / Jimmy Stella and The Ambassadors / The Weaker Sex

April 5-6, 1968: The Turtles / The Regiment / The Bubble Gum Machine (April 5 show was canceled)

April 7, 1968: The Regiment / The Bubble Gum Machine 

April 12-14, 1968: The Chicago Loop / Gene & Debbe / The CTA / The Circus

April 19-21, 1968: Traffic / The Circus / The Loved Ones

April 26-28, 1968: The Dells / The Hip Pocket / The Valves

May 3-5, 1968: Siegel-Schwall Blues Band / The Mandala

May 10-12, 1968: The Ohio Express (10), Dyke & The Blazers (10-12)

May 17-19, 1968: The Grass Roots / Howlin' Wolf / The Rush Hour

May 24-26, 1968: The Mitch Ryder Review (24-25), The Bubble Gum Machine (24-26), Disciples of Mayhem (24-26)

May 31 and June 1-2, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Circus

June 7-9, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Circus / The Epics

June 14-16, 1968: The Fenders / Joyce Kennedy & Her Soul Men (featuring Glen Murdock) / Creation

June 21-23, 1968: J.J. Jackson / The Bangor Flying Circus / Disciples of Mayhem

- Aragon Ballroom -

June 28-29, 1968: The Scott Brothers Revue (featuring Little Miss Irene) / The Shape

July 5-6, 1968: closed for repairs

July 12-13, 1968: Harvey & the Seven Sounds (12-13) / The Home Juice (12-13 / Shadows of Knight (12)

July 17, 1968: Arthur Conley Revue

July 19-20, 1968: The Mauds / Shadows of Knight / The Home Juice / Sunshine Sequins

July 26-27, 1968: Carl Holmes & the Commanders (with Ruth McFadden)

August 2,1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters

August 3, 1968: Herman's Hermits

August 9-10, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / The Fenders / The Weaker Sex

August 16-17, 1968: Big Brother & The Holding Company / The Hello People / The Nazz / LoveCastle

August 23-24, 1968: Carl Holmes & the Commanders (with Ruth McFadden) / The Green Men / The Weaker Sex

August 30, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / The Fenders / Wild Honey

August 31, 1968: The Fenders / The Real Blues / Wild Honey

September 6-7, 1968: Ballroom dancing with the orchestras of Griff Williams and Jose Bethancourt

September 13, 1968: The Dontays / The Chicago Soul Sextet / Wild Honey

September 14, 1968: Latin Carnival with Orchestra Tampico and Raul Garca Company

September 20-21, 1968: Wilson Pickett

September 27, 1968: The Fenders / The Apocryphals / Wild Honey

September 28, 1969: Merengues / Carmen Rivero “Queen of the Cumba”

September 29, 1969: Bob Kirk orchestra / Jose Bethancourt / Hal Pearl on the organ

October 4, 1968: The New Colony Six / The Real Blues / The Dontays

October 5, 1968: Ricardo Rey and the Orchestra Tropical Mocambo

October 6, 1968: Orchestra Perales, Carlos Guzman y Los Fabulosos Quatro

October 11, 1968: Tommy James & The Shondells / M.H. Royals / Chicago Soul Sextet

October 12, 1968: Blacio Jr. & His Grand Spectacular Orchestra

October 18-20, 1968: Oktoberfest

October 25-27, 1968: Oktoberfest

November 8, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters

November 15, 1968: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Aorta

November 22, 1968: Jefferson Airplane / Creedence Clearwater Revival / Blue Cheer

November 29, 1968: Wilson Pickett / Baby Huey & The Babysitters (postponed)

December 13, 1968: New Colony Six

December 14, 1968: Serendipity Singers / The Chips / Wild Honey

December 28, 1968: Wilson Pickett / The Fugs / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

January 10, 1969: Illusions & The North Syde / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

January 11, 1969: Rotary Connection / Litter / Conqueror Worm

January 17, 1969: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Generation Gap / Wild Honey

January 18, 1969: Buckinghams / Operation Soul / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

January 24, 1969: Byrds / The Flock / Litter

January 25, 1969: Stevie Wonder / Motown Sound / Soul Machine

February 7, 1969: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Motown Sound / West Side Story / Rush Hour

February 8, 1969: Mardi Gras with music (Rheinescher Gesang Versin) and beer

February 14, 1969: General Assembly / Motown Sound / Four Days and A Night

February 15, 1969: Cryan’ Shames / Operation Soul / United Nations

February 21-22, 1969: Wayne Cochran / Operation Soul / Wild Honey / Soul Machine

February 28, 1969: Jr. Walker & The Allstars (Martha & The Vandellas cancelled)

March 1, 1969: Marvin Gaye / LoveCastle / ?

March 2, 1969: Gary Puckett & The Union Gap / Green Lyte

March 7-8, 1969: Mitch Ryder / The Trends / Chicago Soul Sextet / United Nations

March 9, 1969: Mario Zelanotti / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

March 14, 1969: Howlin’ Wolf / Rotary Connection / Conqueror Worm

March 15, 1969: Sam The Sham / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

March 21, 1969: Steppenwolf / Bangor Flying Circus / Three Dog Night

March 22, 1969: Procol Harum / Howlin’ Wolf / Litter / Little John Blues Band

March 28, 1969: Spencer Davis / Howlin’ Wolf / Albert Smith Blues Band

March 29, 1969: Ricardo Rey

April 4-5, 1969: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / another unknown act

April 11, 1969: Iron Butterfly / Steve Miller Band

April 18-20, 1969: Bill Haley & The Comets (18-20), Magic Sam & The Magic Grease Band (18) / El Gran Combo (19) / Smokey Robinson & The Miracles (20)

April 25, 1969: Chuck Berry / Rhinoceros / Conqueror Worm

April 26, 1969: Latin band

April 27, 1969: Red Saunders Jazz Band "Bachelors and Benedicts ball"

May 16, 1969: Bobby (Blue) Bland Band / The Serfs / Coloured Rain

May 17, 1969: Latin band

May 23, 1969: Chubby Checker / P.C. Ltd. / Yesterday’s Children

May 24, 1969: Trini Lopez / Sonora Matsanara

May 26, 1969: Harry James and his orchestra

June 13, 1969: Ike & Tina Turner / Four Days & A Night / Dee Dee Turner

June 14, 1969: Latin band

June 20, 1969: Von Ryan Express / Bob Kuban & The In-Man / Matt King & The Ideal / Hartford Connection

June 21, 1969: Von Ryan Express / Buckinghams / Baby Huey & The Babysitters

June 27, 1969: Baby Huey & The Babysitters / Five Stairsteps & Cubie / Spot & The Slotters

July 4-5, 1969: Edwin Hawkins Singers (4-5) / Buddy Guy (5) / Jim Schwall Blues Band (5)

July 11, 1969: Four Days & A Night / Soul Machine / West Side Story

July 12, 1969: Xavier Cugat and his orchestra

July 18-19, 1969: Jefferson Airplane (18-19) / The Ventures (18) / Dillard & Clark (18) / Blue Cheer (19) / Hello People (19)

July 25-26, 1969: John Mayall / Jonah Jones / Jr. Wells / Rotary Connection

August 1-2, 1969: Mothers of Invention (1) / Chuck Berry (1-2) / Howlin’ Wolf (1-2) / Fats Domino (2)

August 15-16, 1969: Dillard & Clark / Tim Buckley / Linda Ronstad

August 22, 1969: Moody Blues / Mickey, Larry & The Esiters / Conqueror Worm

August 23, 1969: Buck Owens & The Buckaroos / Merle Haggard

August 27, 1969: Joan Baez

August 29-31, 1969: Jerry Lee Lewis

November 21, 1969: Arlo Guthrie

November 26, 1969: Beach Boys

December 5, 1969: Wayne Cochran & C. C. Rider

December 20, 1969: Herbie Mann / Four Tops

December 29, 1969: Pacific Gas & Electric / John Lee Hooker / Howlin’ Wolf / Coven / MC5 / Alice Cooper / Rotary Connection / Hot Set Up / Littler / The Stooges / Bob Seger / Mason Proffit / Bangor Flying Circus / Baby Huey "Chicago Pop Festival"

April 10, 1970: Pink Floyd / Rotary Connection / Mason Proffit

May 1, 1970: Al Kooper / Byrds / Bangor Flying Circus

May 8, 1970: The Rascals / Charlie Musselwhite / SRC / Truth / Roxy

May 15, 1970: Joe Cocker (filling in for Delaney & Bonnie & Friends) / Smith / White Lightning / Flying Burrito Brothers / Jesse

May 22, 1970: Mountain / Litter / Bob Seger System / Blood Rock / Mecki Mark Men / The Stooges 

May 29-30, 1970: Kinks / Frijid Pink / Lee Michaels / Jessie / Ned / Third Power

June 5, 1970: Jethro Tull / Sha Na Na / Clouds / Uncle Dirty

June 12-13, 1970 Country Joe & The Fish / Ambergris / Pacific Gas & Electric / Shocking Blue

June 19, 1970: Traffic / SRC / Bloomsbury People / Edmonds & Curley

June 26-27, 1970: Ten Years After / B.B. King / Mott The Hoople / Brownsville Station (day 27 show was cancelled)

June 30, 1970: MC5 / Charles Moore Ensemble

July 1, 1970: Charles Moore Ensemble / Bill C and The Sunshine 

July 2, 1970: Bill C and The Sunshine / Seventh Seal 

July 3-4, 1970: Grateful Dead (cancelled) / It's A Beautiful Day / Aum / Rare Bird

July 4, 1970: Billy C and The Sunshine / Independece Day Poetry Reading by John & David Sinclair, Jim Semark mark, Jerry Youkins, Tom Mitchell, Andre Godrescu / Lights by The Magic Veil 

July 10, 1970: Grand Funk Railroad / Litter / Brian Auger & Trinity / Four Days & A Night

July 15, 1970: Jethro Tull / White Lightning / Cactus (cancelled)

July 17, 1970: Blodwyn Pig / Silver Metre / Mason Proffit / Corky Siegel Happy Year Band / White Lightning / Truth / Fat Water / REO Speedwagon / Third Power / Commander Cody / Wind Rush / Illusion

July 31, 1970: Terry Reid / James Gang (cancelled)

August 14, 1970: Richie Havens / If / Ten Wheel Drive / Kathy Smith

August 16, 1970: Jethro Tull / Cactus / Ned / Frantic

August 21, 1970: Savoy Brown / Crow / Litter / Ten Wheel Drive

August 27-28, 1970: The Stooges (cancelled)

September 11, 1970: John Mayall

September 25, 1970: Johnny Winter / Flock / Mauds / Tinhouse

October 2, 1970: The Stooges / Buddy Miles Band /Dr. John / Mason Profitt (cancelled)

June 23, 1972: It's A Beautiful Day / Blue Oyster Cult / Spirit

August 25, 1972: The Kinks / Foghat / Dr. Hook and His Medicine Show / Flash

September 30, 1972: Chuck Berry

October 13, 1972: Captain Beefheart /Sailcat / Trapeze

November 3, 1972: Mahavishnu Orchestra / Siegal-Schwall Blues Band

January 19, 1973: Badfinger / Raspberries / Amazing Blondel

April 20, 1973: Genesis / Heartsfield

May 25, 1973: Nitty Gritty Dirt Band / Heartsfield

June 1, 1973: Michael Bloomfield & Friends / Siegel Schwall / (possibly) Little Feat

June 14, 1973: Lee Michaels

June 15, 1973: Iggy & The Stooges / Blue Ash / Detroit with Mitch Ryder

July 23, 1973: Leslie West's Wild West Show (with Mitch Ryder) / Dungeon Butter

July 27, 1973: Mott The Hoople / REO Speedwagon / Joe Walsh with Barnstorm

December 15, 1973: Mountain

December 28, 1973: Quicksilver Messenger Service


  1. I remember the Flock playing with John Mayall
    And I remember seeing Rod Stewart with Jeff Beck.

  2. Ccbazz,

    I think you confused the venue because John Mayall and The Flock (March 7-8, 1969) and The Jeff Beck Group (March 14-15, 1969) played in Chicago but not at Cheetah/Aragon Ballroom but at the Kinetic Playground.

  3. Corky Siegel was a member of Siegel Schwall until they disbanded in 1974. They reunited in 1987, and still play together occasionally.

    According to Wikipedia, Siegel formed the Happy Year Band in 1975. I do not remember that though.

  4. blaheh,

    Wikipedia's wrong! (never trust them!). Siegel-Schwall Band broke up on July 7, 1968. The band reformed in late 1969 as Corky Siegel Happy Year Band. With this new name the band played many gigs and recorded the album: "Siegal-Schwall '70" that was released credited to Siegal-Schwall Band because the band has officialy changed its name back to the Siegel-Schwall Band in late September 1970.

    1. Bruno, on the Siegel-Schwall website it says "In 1975, Siegel formed the Happy Year Band with Sam Lay, Albert Joseph on guitar and Rollo Radford on bass." So it's not just Wikipedia that says the Happy Year Band was formed in '75. And it's not the same personnel as appeared on Siegel-Schwall '70 either.

    2. both wrong Dixon! Happy Year Band has been around several years in various forms since 1969...I have contemporaneous reports as proof (such as somme Billboard's article from 1970)

  5. I saw Iggy Pop there and he was appearing with the Detroit Wheels.

    When did Grateful Dead play the Aragon again. I know I saw them there.

  6. Here is who I saw and when:
    Chuck Berry Sep 30 1972
    Badfinger/Raspberries/Amazing Blondel Jan19 1973
    LeslieWest/Mitch Ryder/Dungeon Butter Jul 23 1973
    Ultravox/quartet tour
    Apr 1 1983
    PsychedelicFurs/Depeche Mode Mar 26 1983
    U2 May 21 1983

  7. The Clash 1982 Aug 13
    The Clash 1984 May 17

  8. Hi vw!

    Yes, I confirmed, The Grateful Dead cancelled both shows (July 3-4, 1970) at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago. The sources for this is two: (1) Dead played at McMahon Stadium in Calgary, Canada, on July 3, 1970....(2) A Chicago guy called Dwight Holmes reports that he waited in line for a show at the Aragon on July 3, 1970 where it was announced around 5:00 PM that the Dead had cancelled. I think you remember well the Dead gig in Chicago but not at the Aragon, maybe in another venue, because the band played many times in Chicago during the late 60s and early 70s, I listed below all the Dead shows in Chicago and maybe you remember the correct venue, take a look:

    November 27-28, 1968: Kinetic Playground
    January 31-February 1, 1969: Kinetic Playground
    April 25-26, 1969: Kinetic Playground
    July 4-5, 1969: Kinetic Playground
    November 27, 1970: The Syndrome
    August 23-24, 1971: Auditorium Theatre
    October 21-22, 1971: Auditorium Theatre

  9. vw,

    I don't know show at Aragon with both Iggy Pop (solo or with The Stooges?) and The Detroit Wheels (with Mitch Ryder?). You remember anything about this?

  10. Just to double check on Mitch I found this site where he was traveling without the Wheels. So my memory was correct on that.

    MITCH RYDER w/Leslie West's Wild West Show, Detroit MI ?/Jul/'73

  11. I found an Iggy pop forum which does not mention the Detroit Wheels as opening act. I wrote down Iggy Pop/Detroit Wheels on my list. What I do remember is that I went backstage (I knew a security guard for that show) at one point and the Wheels were back there sitting around and they tried to put the moves on me. LOL

    15 June Aragon Ballroom, Chicago, IL [With Tornado Turner (Sky Warnklein) on guitar instead of James Williamson.]

    The list does not specify how the Stooges were billed. They were known as The Psychedelic Stooges until Oct 1969. From late 1970 or so, the billing was often Iggy and The Stooges. In 1972, 1973, and 1974 it was sometimes just Iggy Pop.

  12. vw,

    I've this show in my list: June 15, 1973: Iggy & The Stooges. And also I've the most correct and accurate "The Stooges Family Tree" and "The Stooges Performance List 1967-1974" in this blog, take a look!

  13. vw,

    by the way, don't wrote down The Detroit Wheels from your list because I think if you remember the band at Aragon with Iggy & The Stooges on June 15, 1973 they supposedly played too. My list is a "work in progress" and I still missed many shows and/or many bands billed, so thanks for The Detroit Wheels addition on June 15, 1973.

  14. Hi Bruno, found another site with Aragon dates.

  15. Thanks vw! I know this site but I don't know the "venues" part.

  16. The singer for the Mauds passed away this month. I saw them at Frontier days, a fourth of July festival in Arlington Hts ILL this past summer. He looked great.

  17. The Leslie West Wild West Show played at the Aragon July 23, 1973, with Mitch Ryder as part of Leslie's band. This band played a handful of dates in the summer of 1973.

  18. To Bruno Ceriotti:

    Do you know anything about the late guitarist Albert Joseph who played lead guitar for Corky Seigel? was he recorded on the Seigel-Schwall 1970 album?

  19. Wow. It's amazing to me that you guys can even remember the bands. Those days were our effed up daze. We always showed up super high on acid, grass and wine. I, and my friends always thought that the guy in the ticket booth was a skeleton in a tux. To this day I don't think he was real.
    We paid our 5 bucks one night and moved towards the doors, but there were people in line, so we waited about an hour before we realized that it was just another group of people all stoned and talking. There was no line. lol.
    My friend and I bought 100 hits of orange sunshine, 50 a piece, and took one just to see...we were trying to sell them for 15cents apiece and all these stoners would say 'is it any good?', so I would bite half of the tab off and eat it and give him the other half. By the end of the night most of my bag was halves. Never sold one hit.
    I remember some of bands up here. I remember seeing these guys swinging on ropes and bouncing of the walls and laughed my ass off, it was Jethro Tull. Wasn't there a battle of bands between Mountain and Ten Years After? We used to follow the Siegel-Schwall Band around when they were on the college circuit. The Flock w/ Violin boy playing loved it. I met Frank Zappa in the alley one night but I think that was at the Kinetic Playground? The old ice skating rink? I don't know anymore. If I hadn't seen the names printed up there I probably wouldn't have remembered their names.

    1. Thank you Jeff for sharing with us your memories of the good old rock 'n' roll days! Yeah, those were the days!

      Bruno Ceriotti

  20. Here's an update for August 16-17, 1968 In addition to Big Brother and the Holding Company (w/Janis Joplin) the opening acts included "The Hello People", "The Nazz" which included Todd Rundgren, and local band "LoveCastle" ... I was there and played in "LoveCastle"."

    1. I thought I saw Janis Joplin but she wasn't on the list. After all these years it's amazing I can remember anything. It's cool to know there was someone else that was there that night. On the other hand, how could anyone forget her?

    2. Actually she was on the list. She appeared as member of Big Brother & The Holding Company on August 16-17, 1968.

  21. Update March 1, 1969 Marvin Gaye, there were two opening acts, including local band "LoveCastle" and second act unknown group from Southern Illinois.

  22. hello.have the poster (jayzey lynch) for the jethro tull/sha na na gig and on reverse (grimshaw design) advertises-june 30 1970-mc5,charles moore ensemble (midnight gig)/july 1-charles moore ensemble/billy c and the sunshine/july 2-billy c and the sunshine/seventh seal/july 4-billy c/independence day poetry reading..john & david sinclair,jim semark,jerry younkins,tom mitchell,andre godrescu. lights the magic veil

  23. I have this poster also. Strangely, the Gary Grimshaw side is for concerts at the See Theatre in Detroit in 1967, NOT 1970. There is no year on the poster, however the See Theatre was only around for June & July of 1967 (you can also check a calendar for 67 & 70 and see that the dates line up for 67 only). I suspect that the Aragon used old stock for Jay Lynch's 1970 Jethro Tull poster. Trying to find out more information on this as I'd like to eBay it (the Grimshaw is sometimes listed as GD55), but the comment here seems to be the ONLY reference for this anomaly on the net!

  24. That's not the actual poster. It is taken from a 1980s reprint book of rock posters. Someone just cut out the page with my poster on the front and Gary's on the back.

  25. Hey Bruno,did you,or remember the group United Nations? My brother George Galanos was the keyboard player. Chicago once told them they played one of there songs better then them!

    1. Hi Andrew, no I don't remember them sorry, but good to hear about them and the Chicago song!

  26. Anyone remember when Beefheart played the Aragon? 72?73?74?

    1. sorry Dave but the list is still incomplete, my fault, but I just added Beefheart gig. It was on October 13, 1972.


  27. I remember my Mom telling me how beautiful the Aragon was back in the 30'shower when she and Dad went dancing. I saw Jethro Tull in the 70's (I think) and was astonished that the rolling sky and stars were still on the ceiling.

  28. Damn auto correct. Not shower, the 30's

  29. Damn auto correct. Not shower, the 30's

  30. I did light shows, on backstage screen at cheetah. Ready do do again-2017-8!

  31. I am sure I saw Jimi Hendrix there

  32. From a review in the Chicago Daily News from July 10, 1971...a group called the Original American Touring Company performing Superstar (Jesus Christ Superstar) played the Aragon on Friday July 9, 1971. It featured Billy Barnes as Jesus, Denny Belline as Judas, Ginny Eastwood as Mary Magdeline, and Joe Morton (the tv/movie character actor!) as Pilate.

    This was one of the non-sanctioned, non-Robert Stigwood sanctioned (Rice/Webber)touring companies to play Jesus Christ Superstar in 1971/72.

    The official official official touring concert hit Ravinia Festival in August of 1971...featuring Carl Anderson as Judas.

    And concurrent with the now opened broadway production, the official concert played the Auditorium Theater in the winter of 1971 once again featuring Carl Anderson as Judas. Sometime later he would join the Broadway cast and later on the movie.

    I wasn't at the show, but my Aunt went to a bunch at the Aragon & remembers that one vividly.

    So in a sense, there was a Rock Concert at the Aragon between Sept 70 & June 72!

  33. The April 5, 1968 Turtles show was cancelled due to civil unrest, after MLK was slain the day before.
    The April 6 show went on as scheduled.
    Nothing was canceled due to poor ticket sales.
    The Friday show was canceled as a safety precaution.

  34. There was also a Sunday April 7 show with just The Regiment and The Bubble Gum Machine.

  35. BTW, here is the ever evolving list of Aragon Ballroom `60s-`90s shows by decade.

  36. I remember seeing The Boomtown Rats in the 80's

  37. I recall playing the Aragon twice as shown on the schedule (8/31/68 and 10/4/68) with Joe Meriweather & The Reel Blues (Not the Real Blues). I also remember playing there when we were supposed to be with Baby Huey & The Baby Sitters who, unfortunately, did not appear during the period when it was the Cheetah. We were an 8 person soul band from Decatur, IL and booked through Irving Azoff when he was in Champaign, IL attending the University of Illinois. Irving worked for Bob Nutt and their company was Blytham, Ltd. I recall the light show behind the band was part of the psychedelic era.

  38. I went to a beach boys concert there in 1970 but can't find it listed anywhere?

    1. I think the show you attended was actually on November 26, 1969

    2. Aragon. Great place to play..,.arch

  39. Great place to play...people vibes architecture acoustics fanta as tic.

  40. Sadly Larry Carta who maintained the Cool Album Review website that listed all Aragon concerts by decade passed away. The link is now dead.
    If I can refresh it through the Way Back Machine I will re-post it in the comments here.