Northwest Dance & Music Venues
Photo provided courtesy of Tony Hayden's Aloha Photographic Studio & Gallery
Woody Herman Band at the Cottonwoods - 9 November 1947 - Photo by John Eggen
Cottonwoods Ballroom
Albany-Lebanon, Oregon
1930 - 1995

Some of the bands that performed at this place during those great years of NW music were:


Louis Armstrong
Larry and His Attitudes
Count Basie
Chuck Berry
Johnny Cash
Dave Burgess and the Champs
The Checkers
The Chordeens
The Coasters
The Col-Lee-Jets
The King Cole Trio
The Cordeers
Brady Sneed and his Corvettes
Bobby Darin
Fats Domino
Lord Dent and the Invaders
The Drifters
Duane Eddy
Duke Ellington
Woody Herman Band
Harry James
Little Willie John
Buddy Knox and the Rhythm Orchids
Jerry Lee Lewis
Leon Smith and the Orbit Rockers
Carl Perkins
Little Richard
Clayton Watson and the Silhouettes
The Teen Kings
The Thunderbirds
The Twisters
Gene Vincent and his Blue Caps

Others ??


Photo provided courtesy of Tony Hayden's Aloha Photographic Studio & Gallery
Woody Herman Band at the Cottonwoods - 9 November 1947 - Photo by John Eggen


The Cottonwoods Ballroom was located on highway 20 about halfway between Albany and Lebanon, about 7 miles from highway 99 (before I-5)  It was built as a dance hall in 1930 and operated steady until 1961, then sporadically over the years. It even suffered the indignity of being a "disco" in 1979.  The building was last used as a bingo hall until 1995, when the roof collapsed and it was torn down.  The sign still stands on the vacant lot.

In the 1940's, the list of big bands who played at Cottonwoods reads like a "who's who" of that era.  It is a fascinating list for those who are interested in that time. For example, Duke Ellington, Harry James, Count Basie, The King Cole Trio, Louis Armstrong, etc, etc.

Jim Creighton
Cottonwoods Researcher
jimacr8on@yahoo.com
June 2007


My father-in-law told stories about how he saw Elvis Presley play there before he was famous.

Becky Hiller, September 2010


We were the first group to play Rock and Roll at the Cottonwoods Ballroom in Albany, Oregon.  After the first gig the owner, "Evelyn", fired us because she thought we were too loud.

A month or so later - she called us back -- and we went back as a trio.

Jess Johnson, The Corvettes
December 2013


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Last Update:  31 December 2013
Credits: Buck England, Jim Creighton, Becky Hiller, John Eggan (Photographer), Tony Hayden (Photos), Jess Johnson