City: New Haven, CT
Address: 300 York St.
Coolest Feature: The wall displaying the names of past performers
Toad's Place got its start in the mid-1970s as a restaurant. Just a few years later, it made a successful transition to music venue, and legends like Muddy Waters were among the first batch of performers. By the 1980s, Toad's had become a reputable venue, attracting the likes of Billy Joel, who recorded "Los Angelenos" from his Songs in the Attic album here in 1980.
As the '80s came to a close, The Rolling Stones blessed Toad's stage, starting their Steel Wheels tour here in 1989 with an extremely exclusive show. The following year, Bob Dylan performed his very first live show in 25 years, making up for lost time with a five-hour performance—his longest to date at that time. During the aughts, Toad's fought through allegations of serving liquor to minors and to this day, its somewhat rundown interior represents years of work put in by performers and appreciative fans alike.