Music Memories of Yonge

Explore Downtown Yonge’s music history with us!
Content researched and written by Nicholas Jennings.

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Piccadilly Tube

316 Yonge Street

Designed to look like an English tube station, this Union Jack-waving underground pub kept aloft the torch for hard rock on Yonge—even during the disco era.

History

The Piccadilly Tube opened in June 1972 in the location of what is now Atrium on Bay. A long dark cavern of a room, the Tube was a replica of London’s Piccadilly subway station, complete with curved walls with English advertisements and a large map showing stops along the Underground line. While fish and chips were a specialty on the menu, it was music that drew the crowds, including local rockers Sweet Blindness, Greaseball Boogie Band Moxy, Triumph and Max Webster who performed to flashing strobe lights. The club also had a brief flirtation with punk and new wave bands such as Teenage Head and Battered Wives. Most notably, rock trio Hall of Famers Rush performed at the Tube in March 1974 to launch its self-titled debut album. Throughout the ’70s and early ’80s, it remained a bastion for hard rock in Toronto.