Peter Frampton reflected on some of his early shows and key cities which paved the way for his late-'70s super-stardom. Frampton, is slowly winding down his 2013 Guitar Circus Tour this month, and recalled to Cincinnati's CityBeat.com, "In San Francisco and Detroit and New York, we were already pulling huge crowds just from word of mouth and the solo albums I had out, and obviously my time with Humble Pie. I think that was the very first time we did it at a stadium. There is nothing quite like looking out to 65,000 people. . . I think the biggest place we had played was Madison Square Garden."
Frampton explained the subtle difference between playing to a big crowd and a massive open air stadium: "There is a huge energy-level discrepancy between an arena and a stadium. There is nothing quite like the adrenaline it gives you to see 65,000 people with their hands in the air shouting at you. You never forget that first time. There were many after that in stadiums, but that first one was pretty incredible."
We asked Frampton to recall the moment in 1976 when he knew that Frampton Comes Alive was a blockbuster and that he was rock's newest superstar: "The day that my manager called and said, 'Guess what?' I said, 'Tell me.' He said, 'We're Number One.' I remember going to a party for ELO and Stanley Sheldon's wife, Judy, just went over to me and said, 'Peter, do you realize that everyone in this room is staring at you?' This was something new and no one was paying attention to ELO, so obviously I went over to them and as I went over, it seemed like the whole room moved with me. That was what my life was going to be like from then on, for quite a few years."
Peter Frampton's "Guitar Circus" North American tour dates (subject to change):
August 21 - Albuquerque, NM - Route 66 Casino (with B.B. King, Sonny Landreth, David Hidalgo of Los Lobos)
August 23 - Las Vegas, NV - Las Vegas Hotel & Casino (with B.B. King and Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots)
August 24 - Los Angeles, CA - Greek Theater (with Sonny Landreth, B.B. King, Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots, and Andy Summers)
August 25 - San Diego, CA - San Diego Civic Theatre (with Sonny Landreth, B.B. King, Sonny Landreth, and Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots)
August 28 - Saratoga, CA - The Mountain Winery (with B.B. King and Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots)
August 30 - Lincoln, CA - Thunder Valley Casino (B.B. King and Richard Thompson)
August 31 - Paso Robles, CA - Vina Robles Amphitheatre (with Sonny Landreth, B.B King, and Richard Thompson)