The Best Amphitheaters in America

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Shoreline Amphitheatre, Mountain View, California
CC Image courtesy of tomdz on Flickr7/10

7. Shoreline Amphitheatre, Mountain View, California

The Shoreline's massive-Fiberglass-tent architecture seemed crazy to everyone when the great San Francisco promoter Bill Graham built it in 1986. Even Bob Weir, the Grateful Dead's guitarist, had trouble with it, recently telling the San Jose Mercury News: "It looked pretty futuristic to me at the time. It was sort of hard to assess what that tent structure would actually sound like. We got to playing there, and our sound guys pretty much figured out how to get that place humming." (Jerry Garcia's health forced the Dead to bow out of their venue-opening show, so Julio Iglesias ended up doing the honors.) Today, the Shoreline is one of those shed-circuit fixtures that snags every outdoor act, from Coldplay to the Dave Matthews Band – and, best of all, it plays host to Neil Young's all-star Bridge School Benefit every October.

Capacity: 22,000


Fun Fact: The site, as big as two football fields, was a landfill before Graham took it over.

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