Les Paul signs Jimmy Page’s chest after signing his guitar at a 72nd birthday party thrown for Les Paul by the Gibson Guitar Company at New York’s Hard Rock Cafe, Monday, June 11, 1987. Guitarist Jeff Beck is at left.
Today is the absolute last day to visit the Hard Rock Cafe in Toronto (Ontario, Canada). A popular tourist attraction, Hard Rock Cafe is known to house rare artifacts of rock history throughout many different places in the world. The one in Toronto took over the spot of Friar’s Tavern, a live music venue in the 1960s and early 1970s that was compared to the Cavern Club. It was here that The Band was formed after Bob Dylan met Ronnie Hawkins’ backup group in 1965. All memorabilia will be sent to Orlando’s Hard Rock Cafe. This includes boots from Stevie Nicks, guitars from Joni Mitchell, drawings from John Lennon, an axe bass from Gene Simmons, a poncho from Neil Young, and much more.
Unfortunately Hard Rock Cafe’s new building will not continue the music trend and will be transformed into a Shoppers’ Drug Mart despite the numerous locations around Toronto, including one in the Eaton Centre directly across the street from Hard Rock Cafe. In addition to Hard Rock Cafe closing so has Honest Ed’s, a kitschy discount store known for it’s flashy exterior among the otherwise moody street, decorated with the autographs of bygone celebrities. Both losses have devastated many Torontonians, and many fear of the further demolition of Toronto’s legacy in music & arts history. Yorkville (former infamous hippie hotspot), Sam the Record Man, and Maple Leafs Gardens (hosted Keith Moon’s final concert), among countless others, have also all been changed drastically, their impactful histories only a reminiscent.