Event Photography

Photo Essay: Tucson Concert Venues

Time for a look at Tucson concert venues, past and present.

First, a look back at one of the hottest dance clubs of a couple of decades ago. I’m talking about the Green Dolphin, which was located a few blocks south of the University of Arizona. This was one of the clubs that students raved about when I worked at the UA.

Not that UA employees would ever frequent a place like the Green Dolphin. The music was too loud for our bosses, the bands were ones that thirty-something worker-bees like me had never heard of, and, besides, all of us full-time employees had to get up early so we could arrive at our campus jobs by 8 a.m.

Hence, I have no Green Dolphin memories to share.

What I can share is what the place has turned into. The Green Dolphin has been closed for almost 20 years. These days, it just sits there, decaying in the Tucson sun…

Architectural photography - west wall of former Green Dolphin night club, Tucson, Arizona

Twenty years ago, Downtown Tucson was not the first place that would come to mind if you were planning a big night out. It was full of empty streets, empty storefronts, and a scary ambiance that didn’t encourage people to linger.

Much redevelopment has happened in recent years. With redevelopment comes large community events like 2nd Saturdays Downtown. This one draws at least 10,000 people every month for strolling, eating, drinking, shopping, and admiring the vintage car show on Congress Street…

Event photography - vintage car show on Congress Street, Tucson, Arizona

The Tucson music cognoscenti know that 2nd Saturdays concert acts are the ones to catch before they head off to the big shows at Club Congress, Plush, or the Rialto Theatre.

With that thought in mind, let’s check out the Heather “Li’l Mama” Hardy Band on the 2nd Saturdays Scott Avenue Stage. Here’s Heather Hardy on the electric violin with Mitzi Cowell on guitar…

Concert photography - Violinist Heather Hardy performing with guitarist Mitzi Cowell, Tucson, Arizona

On bass, it’s Larry Lee Lerma…

Concert photography - Bassist Larry Lee Lerma in performance, Tucson, Arizona

Manning the drums, Ralph Gilmore…

Concert photography - Drummer Ralph Gilmore, Tucson, Arizona

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