University Archives Receives Collection of SBU Concert Memorabilia

Stony Brook University Archives’ collection of concert history memorabilia has just grown thanks to SBU alum Lisa Kimoto, who recently donated a collection of original concert posters and news publications from the 1980s. We thank Lisa for helping us to document Stony Brook’s musical roots! Browse the gallery below to view items from the collection.

Stony Brook University: A Pioneering & Legendary Concert History

SBU emerged in the mid-1960s as a leading concert venue on Long Island. From punk to jazz to folk, the university hosted the biggest acts in music including Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Lou Reed, Pink Floyd – and “Soft White Underbelly” which evolved into Blue Oyster Cult, and whose famed manager was SBU alum Sandy Pearlman.

Many performers and groups that are today revered and recognized as iconic in their respective genres made their New York and east coast debuts in the United States at SBU. Performances were often held in the gym, in the Stony Brook Union, and outdoors. Credit for this incredible concert history can be attributed to the Student Activities Board (SAB), a division of student government that coordinated and produced all aspects of the events, from inviting the musical acts to selling the tickets. More examples of the legendary artists that performed on campus include U2, Carlos Santana, Chuck Berry, Dizzy Gillepsie, The Doors, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Odetta, Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, and Frank Zappa. The Allman Brothers Band’s concert on September 19, 1971 marked Duane Allman’s last public performance before his tragic death the following month.

In 2006, SBU was inducted as a venue to the Long Island Music Hall of Fame, an honor that recognizes a select group of music luminaries, visionaries, leaders, and entities that have made significant contributions to the growth and advancement of Long Island music. Since 2010, best-selling musical acts and artists including Bruno Mars, Wiz Khalifa, and Long Island’s own Taking Back Sunday have performed on campus, continuing SBU’s historical tradition as an important concert destination for the most influential artists in the music industry. Learn more at:

Kristen Nyitray

Kristen Nyitray

Associate Librarian; Director, Special Collections and University Archives; and University Archivist at Stony Brook University Libraries
Contact her for research assistance with rare books, manuscript collections, historical maps, and SBU history. E-mail:
Kristen Nyitray
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