In the 1960's Wildwood nightclubs and bars continued to book top entertainment - but the rock scene was changing and there was a new sound on the rise. In 1971 a new convention center was constructed and a younger generation of rockers were making the scene in Wildwood. Over the years that followed Convention Hall scheduled rock shows that featured performers such as Elton John, The Fifth Dimension, Jim Croce, Neil Diamond, Alice Cooper and many more. Pictured below are ads for many of the great bands that played Wildwood throughout the 70's.
Alice Cooper, Yes, Jethro Tull and David Cassidy were part of the Summer Concerts in 71'.

The above ads are from the summer of 1971 and show the impressive line up of concerts at Wildwood Convention Hall.
Argent and the Kinks played in the summer of 1972.
Cassidy appeared again in August of 1972 along with Sly And The Family Stone.
The three posters shown above left and right are from the summer of 1974. The center poster is from the ELO concert in 1975. My sister Roseanne managed to get back stage and had Jeff Lynne and the entire band autograph the poster.
Kiss rocked Wildwood Convention Hall in the summer of 1975. The original show date of July 5th was cancelled after the band was reported to have been involved in a car accident. Rescheduled for July 23rd this live performance was recorded and later featured on their multi-platinum album "Kiss Alive".
In the early 80's the Playpen in the Diamond Beach section of Wildwood Crest showcased bands such as The Ramones, Dave Mason, Rick Derringer, Peter Frampton and Squeeze.
The ticket stubs shown below come from the collection of my good friend Mark Piro.


Wildwood Rockives


The Playpen at Diamond Beach was one of the greatest clubs to party on a summer night in the Wildwoods. Thursday night was $1 import night and just about every local on the island was in attendance. I don't think Wildwood will ever experience another club like it.
Every generation has a story to tell about the Wildwood experience. Sadly just about every hot spot I mentioned is long gone now, even the old Convention Hall was demolished in early 2004. Fortunately a brand new state-of-the-art Convention Center was constructed on the beach and opened its doors in 2002. In the fall of 2004 Wildwood held its first Fabulous Fifties weekend which celebrated the 50th anniversary of Haley's Rock around the Clock and featured live performances by Bill Haley's original Comets, Danny and the Juniors, the Dovells, Fabian and more. The musical celebration was a huge success and will no doubt become an annual tradition where we can twist and shout and remember the days when Wildwood rocked.
Copyright 2001 Ralph Grassi