Besides being home to the Lakers, Clippers, Kings and Sparks since 1999, Staples Center has also been a busy concert and event venue bringing internationally known acts to fill the 20,000-capacity venue.
On Dec. 25, however, Staples Center will no longer host any more events because on that day the downtown Los Angeles arena will be renamed Crypto.com Arena.
The change comes as a result of a 20-year deal between the Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange and AEG, the owner and operator of the arena.
So in remembrance of the venue’s former identity, here are some of the top entertainment moments in Staples Center’s more than 20-year history.
Global K-pop sensation BTS managed to sell out four nights at Staples Center in 2018. Dozens of fans (pictured from left: Cassidy Lirag, 17, Destiny Hayes, 13, and Cat Aly, 17, all of San Gabriel) camped out in front of the venue for days before the first show to try to score a closer seat. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Following his headlining performance at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio last month, rapper Kendrick Lamar announced two evenings at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Aug. 8 and Wednesday, Aug. 9. He just announced a stop at Honda Center in Anaheim as well on Friday, Aug. 11. (Photo by Matt Masin, Orange County Register/SCNG)
Bono of U2 performs in Los Angeles, at Staples Center, Tuesday, April 5, 2005. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
The rose covered coffin holding the remains of Michael Jackson rests in the front of stage during Jackson’s memorial service at the Staples Center, Tuesday, July 7, 2009 in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Wally Skalij, Pool)
Fher Olvera of Mana performs at Staples Center on June 23, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images)
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
Oct. 17, 1999
The Boss set the tone for Staples Center when he became the first artist to take the stage at the newly opened downtown venue in 1999. Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band not only sold out opening night but three other nights at the venue as well.
First Latin Grammy Awards
Sept. 13, 2000
Luis Miguel, Santana and Maná were the big winners that night with each walking away with three awards. But the night was a huge win for diversity too, since it marked the very first Latin Grammy Awards. The night was broadcast on CBS, making it the first primarily Spanish-language prime time event carried on an English language American TV network.
Elton John and Eminem duet
Feb. 21, 2001
Duets are nothing new but this one, which took place at the 43rd Annual Grammy Awards, was pretty significant. Elton John had previously called out Eminem for homophobic lyrics. But the two connected and shocked many when it was announced that they would perform Eminem’s “Stan,” during the live broadcast. It turned out to be an iconic performance that ended with a standing ovation and the two artists hugging it out.
Feb. 6, 2003
Tickets for the Rolling Stones can get very pricey, but for one night only in 2003 fans got to see the legendary band for free, and it was for a good cause, too. The band teamed up with the Natural Resources Defense Council for the free show that was meant to raise awareness for global warming. Tickets were given away by raffle and former president Bill Clinton opened the show, but not with his sax. Instead he was there to introduce the band to the crowd of 18,000 lucky ticket winners.
Prince and Beyoncé
IFeb. 8, 2004
Beyoncé won a handful of awards at the 46th Annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center. But it was her opening medley with Prince that stole the show. The two stars performed “Purple Rain,” “Baby I’m a Star,” “Let’s Go Crazy” and Queen Bey’s “Crazy in Love.”
U2 packs Staples
April 6, 2005
The Irish band performed in April and November and packed the Staples Center as part of its Vertigo Tour. But the most packed night was on April 6 when 20,382 fans rocked out to songs from the band’s 2004 album “How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb.” According to venue stats on the Staples Center website, that night marked the largest concert attendance at the venue.
Streisand rakes in the money
Nov. 20, 2006
Barbra Streisand had a good year in 2006 because when she closed out the North American leg of her tour at Staples on Nov. 20 she also set the record at the venue for highest-grossing concert, making more than $5.4 million.
Jan. 25-26, 2008
When California was devastated by wildfires in 2007 country star Garth Brooks didn’t hesitate to jump on the saddle and help out. He announced a series of benefit shows at the venue and in less than an hour sold 85,000 tickets for five separate concerts he performed in two days. He performed two shows on Jan. 25 and then on Jan. 26 he played shows at 1, 5 and 9 p.m., making him the first artist ever to pull off a tripleheader in a major arena.
King of Pop memorial
July 7, 2009
Two weeks after the sudden death of Michael Jackson, his family, friends, and fans packed Staples for a public memorial service. The memorial was filled with stars such as Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey and Brooke Shields, who all shared memories of him as they stood before his gold-plated, flower-draped casket. One of the most emotional moments came when his 11-year-old daughter Paris Jackson delivered a tearful speech.
Stones turn 50
May 3 and 20, 2013
The Rolling Stones celebrated their 50th anniversary with the 50 & Counting Tour and sold-out Staples Center on May 3. The anniversary set was filled with more than 20 hits and other stars appeared. Keith Urban joined the band on “Respectable” and Gwen Stefani came out for “Wild Horses.”
June 20, 2015
Actually, the Forum is currently the Mexican rocker’s home since the band has a residency there next year. But before it moved into Inglewood, on June 20 2015 Maná set the record for most performances by a band at Staples Center with 13 shows.
Aug. 19, 2015
Maybe it was the lyrics to her song “Piece by Piece,” which is about her husband, that got Kelly Clarkson so emotional she stopped the song and did something no one had even done from the stage at Staples Center. The very first “American Idol” winner suddenly stopped singing and announced that she was “totally pregnant” with her second child. The announcement made news all over the world.
Compton in the house
Aug. 6, 2017
Kendrick Lamar was having a great year in 2017. The Compton native had headlined Coachella in April while his fourth record “Damn,” debuted at No. 1 on the album charts. On Aug. 6 he performed the first of three shows at Staples Center that were part of his first arena tour. He was the biggest rapper in hip-hop at the time and he knew this was his moment as he thanked fans for helping him grow from club shows to this arena.
Sept. 5-6 and 8-9 2018
K-Pop sensation BTS sold out four nights at Staples Center to mark the kickoff of the “Love Yourself” world tour. Dozens of diehard fans camped outside of Staples Center for days ahead of the shows to try to score closer seats.
April 11, 2019
Thousands of fans got free tickets and came to pay their respects to rapper and community activist Nipsey Hussle at his celebration of life event at Staples Center. Eleven days earlier he was gunned down outside of his South Los Angeles clothing store. On stage with his family were other rappers including Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar and singer Stevie Wonder.
July 30, 2021
Like other venues, Staples Center was shut in March 2020 due to the pandemic. Live music finally returned to the Staples Center on July 30 with a sold out performance by Tijuana, Mexico-born Grupo Firme. It was the first band to play at Staples Center in 531 days and the ranchera group took the stage for the first in a series of seven sold out shows. The shows set the record for the most concerts in a single year at Staples by a Latin act.
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