Saturday Night Fever

Cue the Bee Gees.

Before the White Sox moved into their new Guaranteed Rate Field (arguably the most boring field name of all the Major League fields), they were located at Comisky Park, which operated from 1910-1990. Comisky Park hosted three All Star games and four World Series, including the infamous Black Sox Scandal of 1919. There were also non-baseball events held at Comisky Field as well, including many concerts, soccer games, and even some NFL games, back when the home town team was the Chicago Cardinals.

But did you know that back in 1979, Comisky Park was host to ‘Disco Demolition Night?’ Yes, you read that right. A local radio DJ was hosting an event to attempt to sway the public’s perception towards disco music. And this would go down as one of the most memorable nights in Comisky Park history.

Thursday July 12, 1979. The White Sox were scheduled for a double header against the Detroit Tigers. Steve Dahl, a local radio personality, was leading the charge against disco.  Fans, if they brought a disco record to the game, got in at a discounted rate, just 98 cents. Between the two games of the night, Dahl led a chant of ‘Disco sucks!’ to a crowd of nearly 70,000 fans. A large box of disco (and other genre) records was dragged into the field and blown up. A riot ensued.

The team at Grimlet’s Undone look into what led up to this night, as well as the ramifications for disco music as a genre that followed. Listen to this episode here.

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