The Best Big Rooms in America

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Toad’s Place in New Haven, Conn.
CC Image courtesy of kidneybingos on Flickr14/20

14. Toad’s Place in New Haven, Conn.

The 7,000-square-foot club under the green awning near Yale University is famous nationally for two events: It's where the Rolling Stones opened their Steel Wheels tour in 1989, and where Bob Dylan played one of his longest-ever shows (four hours!) in 1990. But locals know the intimate space with the rockin' cartoon amphibian hanging over the doorway contains far more history than that, with legendary appearances by U2, Tom Waits and Talking Heads. "Saw my first show there: Ice Cube," says Talib Kweli, who attended a nearby boarding school.

Capacity: 1,000


Fun Fact: Billy Joel recorded his song "Los Angelenos" here in 1980.

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