So much has been written about that night in the years since that fact and myth have become intertwined. Regular power-outs, a guest list of Beatles and Blow-Ups, acid casualties stalking dirt-floor stalls dosed up on acid-laced sugarcubes handed out on the door. What does Floyd drummer Nick Mason recall from that night, 50 years on? “Well obviously I can’t remember a thing, so I’ll have to invent it for you,” he laughs.

Here I can't understand the meaning of "stalking dirt-floor stalls". What is a "dirt-floor stall"

  • 2
    The "stalls" are the chair-like seats arranged in rows in front of the orchestra pit in a theatre (usually, the cheap ones, since originally that area was "standing room only"). But I suspect your writer is exaggerating a bit in suggesting that any such venues in the UK might really have had dirt floors in the 60s. I think John Lennon said Those in the stalls, please clap your hands. The rest of you please rattle your jewelry. – FumbleFingers Oct 31 '16 at 16:36
  • Okay, thanks. Stalls are chairs. Still trying to understand the meaning of 'stalking' here. Haven't seen it being used in such context. – SovereignSun Oct 31 '16 at 20:20
  • To stalk has a range of senses, mainly centred on pursue (wild game animals) stealthily, but in this specific context it's probably pretty much equivalent to skulk (to move in a stealthy or sneaking fashion, so as to escape notice), rather than strut (to walk stiffly & proudly, to swagger). – FumbleFingers Nov 1 '16 at 14:17
  • @FumbleFingers Hmm. Skulk.. then it should be "among stalls" or "between stalls"? – SovereignSun Nov 1 '16 at 14:23
  • Bear in mind that originally, "the stalls" applied to the cheaper "standing room only" area nearest the stage. And even if there are actually seats, they're often the "flip-down" kind. The image is one of spaced out acid-heads shuffling around in that general area - some still standing, some collapsed on the floor, and maybe a few who are sufficiently physically coordinated to actually flip a chair seat down and sit on it. – FumbleFingers Nov 1 '16 at 14:47

Link to the full article

Elsewhere in the article it explains that the Roundhouse venue as:

"the former engine repair turning shed and Gilbey’s Gin storehouse"

In later days it is described as:

"'a proper venue – one of the places that we played if we were on an English tour.' That first night was something so much more."

I believe that the intention of the author is to convey how rough the venue was when it debuted... It seems likely that the stalls were bathroom stalls... with dirt floors. Am further guessing that they had to be stalked because they were hard to find, unmarked or hard to get into due to crowding.

Edit: Based on FumbleFinger's comment it seems that stalls could well be part of the seating area. Hard to know if they are literally dirt or not.

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