During the first of two Dead & Company shows at the Hollywood Bowl on Wednesday night, John Mayer and his Grateful Dead comrades were interrupted mid-song and ushered offstage as the stage lights went dark for at least 10 minutes. The L.A. Philharmonic, which manages the Bowl, and the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation just confirmed to Billboard that an "unfounded bomb threat" onstage caused the temporary blackout.
"Last night, a performance at the Hollywood Bowl was briefly interrupted while on-site authorities investigated an unfounded bomb threat that was called in during the concert," the Thursday (June 1) statement begins. "Because the safety of our patrons is paramount, we immediately initiated a thorough search of the area that turned up no evidence validating the threat. Hollywood Bowl security always includes onsite law enforcement officers, explosive detection dogs and metal detectors at all entrances to the venue. The concert resumed without further incident."
Resume it did: Billboard attended the show, and though Dead & Co. were interrupted during their performance of "He's Gone," they came back out onstage and picked up at the exact same point in the song as if the jam had never stopped. "All clear, kind of," Dead legend Bob Weir said to the crowd when they returned, which only fueled rumors throughout the Bowl audience and on Twitter of what caused the otherwise-unaddressed show stoppage.
Before the show even began, the Bowl warned concertgoers on Twitter of "enhanced security measures" at Wednesday night's event, perhaps due in part to last week's suicide bombing at a Manchester, England, Ariana Grande concert that left 22 dead and dozens more injured. Indeed, longer-than-normal lines greeted Deadheads outside the Bowl, as security ran each fan through metal detectors and bag searches. The tweet also suggested "SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING":
Via @AHBSPresents Due to enhanced security measures, please arrive at least 20 minutes prior to ticketed time. SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING.
— Hollywood Bowl (@HollywoodBowl) June 1, 2017
Dead & Company return to the Bowl on Thursday night for their second show. The Grateful Dead last played the Hollywood Bowl in 1974, of course then led by late frontman Jerry Garcia instead of Mayer.
Stay tuned to Billboard for a full recap of the concert.