Today in NC State History: Elton John lights up Reynolds

September 20, 2012
By Chris Saunders

PrintReynolds Coliseum has been the home to two NC State men’s basketball championship teams. The building has hosted presidents and ambassadors. Comedians like Bob Hope have entertained there. But the “House the Case Built” has a long legacy of being at the heart of rock ‘n’ roll, too, hosting such acts as the Rolling Stones.

And on this day in 1980, Reynolds added to that legacy by welcoming Elton John to perform.

Photo first appeared in 1981 Agromeck.

Photo first appeared in 1981 Agromeck.

John was touring that year in support of his album, 21 at 33, named so because it was John’s 21st release at the age of 33. The 1980 world tour was one that saw John consistently perform memorable hits like “Tiny Dancer,” “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” “Rocket Man,” and “Saturday Night’s Alright (for Fighting).”

He also played “Bennie and the Jets” many times on the tour, but it is yet to be confirmed if the song is, in fact, a tribute to NC State Alumni Association Executive Director Benny Suggs ’69, who was a rear admiral in the U.S. Navy and earned his Naval Aviation Wings in 1971.

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3 Responses to “Today in NC State History: Elton John lights up Reynolds”

  1. Barbara Day says:

    It was a GREAT show! So glad that I was there! Thanks for the memory.

  2. Peter Brunnick says:

    i didn’t have the money or was unwilling to pay to see the concert, but I do remember slipping in the side door as the show was nearly over and catching the last three or four songs. Elton John wasn’t a big draw for me in those days but I do remember what I saw as being quite good. Thanks for reigniting a long lost memory.

  3. Rhonda Stephens says:

    I was there, 14 years old at my first “big” show, and it was fantastic!

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