30. Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers toured the world right up until lead singer Tom Petty died suddenly in 2017, at the age of 66. The band’s final tour, which celebrated their 40th anniversary, concluded with three nights at the Hollywood Bowl. The set list included rarely played tracks such as “Rockin’ Around (With You),” which was the first track on their 1976 debut album, “Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers,” and which hadn’t been performed live since 1983.
In 1983, four years after battling nerves to promote his debut album “For You” in front of only a few hundred people, Prince strutted his stuff on stage with James Brown and Michael Jackson. According to Time Magazine, the 25-year-old Prince was the star of the show. Over the next 20 years, he enthralled audiences with his erotically-charged performances. His 2007 appearance at Miami’s Dolphin Stadium (now the Hard Rock Stadium) remains one of the best Super Bowl halftime shows of all time.
28. Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley was known as “The King,” and he was certainly the king of performing. Starting with his first Memphis show in 1954, he toured constantly, entertaining millions of people all over the world.
His final gig was in Indianapolis on June 26, 1977, only six weeks before he died. As he often did, he closed the show with his 1961 hit “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” Presley’s gigs also made history — one of his most notable concerts, “Elvis-Aloha from Hawaii,” was the first live show by a solo artist to be beamed worldwide by satellite.
27. Deep Purple
Not only one of the best live bands of all time, Deep Purple is also up there with the loudest. They were even listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as “the globe’s loudest band” for a 1972 concert at London’s Rainbow Theatre, which reportedly rendered three fans unconscious. Since their formation in 1968, Deep Purple have toured the world in various lineups. To promote their twentieth studio album, “Infinite,” the band embarked upon the 2017 Long Goodbye Tour, which drummer Ian Paice suggested would be their last.
The Eagles disbanded in 1980 but reunited in 1994 for the album “Hell Freezes Over” and have toured consistently since then. After singer and guitarist Glenn Frey died in January 2016, drummer Don Henley said he didn’t think the band would perform again, but in 2017 and 2018 they played sell-out gigs with musicians Vince Gill and Frey’s son, Deacon, to rave reviews.
25. Foo Fighters
In addition to several global stadium tours, Foo Fighters have headlined music festivals, played intimate gigs and even played a crowd-funded concert in Richmond, Virginia. The band members themselves consider their 2008 gig at London’s Wembley Arena to be one of their most memorable. Lead singer Dave Grohl told NME, “that was huge for me because we never imagined we would get to the point we could do something like that.”
24. The Allman Brothers Band
One of the most legendary gigs in the history of The Allman Brothers Band took place on March 13, 1971, at Fillmore East Theater in New York. The band gave the audience nearly 23 minutes of “Whipping Post,” the last song on the band’s first album and a staple of their live shows. Three months later, the Allman Brothers Band returned to Fillmore East to give the venue a memorable sendoff before it closed its doors for the last time, playing until dawn.
23. The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Rock legend Jimi Hendrix recorded three hit albums with The Jimi Hendrix Experience. One of the band’s most electrifying shows was at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival, kicking off the first U.S. tour for the band. They played hits like “Hey Joe” and “Purple Haze” and, at the end of their performance, after his rendition of “Wild Thing,” Hendrix poured lighter fluid over his black Fender Stratocaster, setting it on fire.