1974 was a significant year for Blue Oyster Cult, marking as it did the appearance of what many people consider, myself included, to be the band's most significant record, "Secret Treaties", released in April of that year.
Some of the gig dates on this page are a little tentative - also there are holes in these schedules so I'm hoping you folk can help me fill in some of these gaps.
I'd also like to thank Bolle Gregmar, Paul 5, Peter Nielsen of the thinlizzyguide.com and Bert Gangl for their help with a number of gigs on this page.
Have you got anything to contribute to this page? Reviews, ticket stubs, missing support band info, posters, flyers, missing venue names etc etc - if so, let me .
I initially listed a Central Park show on this date because it was included in the original boc.com schedules.
Then I got sent the following information...
Here's another setlist for you. It comes from a bootleg in circulation called "Stones Throw"
Date / Venue: 12 January 1974 Woolman Skating Rink, Central Park, NYC
Notes: "Stones Throw" 2 disc set with 12/4/75 Willow Ice Chalet, Chicago, IL
Pretty crappy quality CD otherwise. Albert sings both "Astronomy" (which I hadn't noticed before) and "Dominance". It's a great solo from Buck on D&S as he clearly hasn't got the classic solo down yet.
ME262 has that 5 Guitars section in the middle of the song (with a much heavier bass - the Mk1 version of 5 Guitars) in the same style as the version on OYFOOYK.
I'd never heard of "Stones Throw" before, and that song order is clearly "manipulated" (plus, I'm slightly suspicious of Transmaniacon's inclusion), but it seemed to re-confirm the gig and the date, and was specific about the venue, so that's how I listed it, until I considered the following post...
A gig at The Wollman Skating Ring in Central Park on the date of Jan 12, 1974 does not make sense to me...
I am very familiar with the venue. It was called the Schaefer Music Festival. Been there many times. I thought, during the winter months it was, still is, used as a skating ring. Outdoors. How can a concert have been held in Jan there?
Just doesn't add up.
So upon further consideration, after all is taken with all, I have decided I agree with Jim's post above and I have removed this "gig" form the lists - especially since I have been unable to find any mention of it in any of the online newspaper sources.
However, I'm leaving it in the timeline chronology as a "possible" gig - just in case...
I only initially knew that this gig had been scheduled on this date because I saw a flyer for it here:
Then I saw an ad that appeared in the "Asbury Park Press" on 25 Jan 1974 which said the following:
Blue Oyster Cult
Postponed to a Later Date
Due To Improvements
For Further Information
Call 775-6876 or 775-6864
So I wondered - was it just "postponed" or was it actually "cancelled"?
The helpful folk over at the "Sunshine In" Facebook Page told me - so far as they can tell - it was cancelled:
There were few shows there in 1974, the final year of the "In". We know of only 18 advertised shows in the entire year of '74, with the final show on 12/8 (BTO). I doubt that BOC show was ever rescheduled.
And I doubt it was postponed due to "improvements". More likely it was a financial issue... like they were supposed to get some of the money in advance of the date and did not.
I agree with Billy. It probably was never re-scheduled. Fisher was on a sort of blacklist with promoters from New York City who controlled all of the bookings in the area.
Incidentally - there was actually a BOC/Nazareth/Kiss gig planned for the Sunshine In on 29 June 1974, but that too was cancelled.
I only know of a gig scheduled on this date from an advert that appeared in the Lancaster PA "Sunday News" on Sunday 13 Jan 1974.
I'd be more confident that the gig actually took place if subsequent edition also mentioned the gig, but, so far, that's all I have.
I doubt this Jan 74 gig occurred. Both Andy Shernoff and Stu Boy said that their first show was Prince George CC (30 Nov 1973), and the second was Port Chester on Feb 3 1974.
Well, as I have an advert, I'll leave it listed for now because, even if Andy and Stu are correct and the "Diktators" (as the ad refers to them) didn't play for whatever reason, the gig could still have gone ahead with BOC and a different support...
If anyone can help confirm/deny this one, one way or the other, please click the "info" link on the right to email me and let me know...
January 31, 1974 - Hershey Park Arena - Hershey PA: BOC opened for Black Sabbath. I was there.
I attended a memorable BOC concert at the Capitol Theater in Passaic NJ on April 27, 1974 but I knew I'd seen them earlier that year in either Hershey or Harrisburg, and it was not long before April.
I also remembered Black Sabbath being the main act. But, your site did not indicate any shows there before Apr 27, 1974 - but I knew that I had been to one - I clearly remembered that concert because I had never even heard of them before, and I became an immediate fan.
I eventually found the date on the Black Sabbath site:
Despite that it was the first time I ever saw them, and didn't know who they were, I remember 4 songs in particular:
Black Sabbath - I was so blown away by BOC that Ozzie and company seemed mediocre by comparison.
I saw a show around that time, but thought before 1974 with Black Sabbath and BOC at Hershey, White Witch was opening act and BOC blew away Black Sabbath.
Between BOC and Black Sabbath the wooden fence between the crowd and stage got pushed down - I stepped on a nail and went to the on-site infirmary.
My girlfriend stayed and I joined her when they released me.
Hope this helps !
I only know this gig was cancelled as a result of the following mention in the 5 Feb 1974 edition of the "Press and Sun-Bulletin" [Binghamton NY]:
Rock Concert Canceled
The Black Sabbath rock concert, scheduled for 7 p.m. tonight at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena, has been canceled.
A spokesman for Entertainment Concepts, the concert's promoter, said lead singer Ossie Osbourne of Black Sabbath was ill. "He could have done the show but he would have run the risk of blowing out his voice," said the spokesman.
Refunds are available at the Arena box office or tickets may be exchanged for the Yes concert, scheduled Feb 23.
The spokesman said that ticket sales may have been a factor in the cancellation. Only 3,000 had been sold for the show, which also included Bedlam and Blue Oyster Cult.
The spokesman said Black Sabbath had been selling out 12,000-seat arenas and, all factors considered, decided to cancel tonight's show.
A complicating factor, date-wise, is a mention of the Broome County Arena's upcoming February schedule in the 24 Jan 1974 edition of The Vestal News [Binghamton NY] which included this:
Feb 4, the Black Sabbath, a rock group;
So I suppose the possibility exists that the gig might have been on the 4th Feb, but I have more faith in the "Press and Sun-Bulletin" report as it was extremely adjacent to the cancelled gig, time-wise...
If you know better, please let me know...
Incidentally, I originally had the following account (off the old altmusicBOC newsgroup) filed under the "Dunno" section at the foot of this page:
In early 1972, I was living in Queens, NY and the FM station WCBS started playing "Cities on Flame" from the self-titled debut. When that LP got a rave review in Rolling Stone, I bought a copy at Alexanders dep't store on Queens Blvd, with money from my afternoon job.
I wasn't blown away at first... but after about the 5th playing I was totally hooked. My friends at school just kinda said "Blue Oyster who?" My favorites were "Transmaniacon MC" and "Workshop of Telescopes".
When the second album, "Tyranny and Mutation" came out, it was the hardest, loudest, fastest thing I had ever heard and I was mesmerized. To this day that album for me DEFINES heavy metal, and nothing since then has ever come close to it; every song, every word, perfect.
It was that album that had a short blurb on the inner jacket about sending an SASE for Cult lyrics; they came back on white/green computer paper, probably printed out from some IBM mainframe somewhere. That offer was repeated on the next 3 or 4 albums and they always included the newest lyrics plus the old ones. I blame my slight hearing loss on the left side to "Tyranny".
The next few years brought "Secret Treaties" and the live "On your feet...". In 1973 I was supposed to see BOC opening for Black Sabbath at the newly-built Broome County Arena in Binghamton. The show was cancelled that afternoon, Ozzy was sick...wimp! Finally saw BOC for the first time a year later in the same arena.
High point: meeting the band in 1976 when I worked at the hotel they were staying at. Got all but Albert's signatures in the fold-out of "On your feet". Never met a nicer group of guys, and I met a bunch of famous '70s musicians at that job (that's a book unto itself).
All through the '70s I was a huge fan, saw them a few more times. My tastes started changing in the '80s but I always kept tabs on BOC and their progress.
However, the ever-vigilant Bert Gangl has drawn my attention to the fact that both these reports are clearly talking about the same (cancelled) gig:
The 1973 cancellation he speaks of was actually the cancelled 5 Feb 1974 gig you have listed.
And the concert "a year later" was probably the show a year and a half later on 25 Jan 1976, at the Arena.
And the time he met the band in 1976, was probably for their 17 Sep 1976 show at the same venue.
I used to class this as only a "possible" concert to be added to the gig lists but now that the great Dan Lampinski has posted the actual gig on Dime, I think it's safe to assume it definitely took place!!
It's also confirmed here:
Also - here's a link which reckons it was "Bedlam/Blue Oyster Cult" in support of Sabbath at the Palace Concert Theater on this date:
Looking at the used ticket stub above, it can be seen that the venue was actually the Civic Center, not the Palace Theater.
And regards Bedlam being on the bill... I dunno... Eighteen months earlier, on 30 July 1972, BOC again supported Sabbath in Providence, this time it was at the Palace Concert Theater and Bedlam were apparently also on that bill.
It's stretching credulity almost to breaking point to have a situation with those exact same three bands on the bill again, but that's the info I currently have.
My guess is would be that one of these gigs - either the 1972 one or this one - has got the wrong info attached to it.
Have you got any info that might help??!! Please let me know, if so...
Here's a link to an issue of the Brown Daily Herald with a listing showing Bedlam as playing this show with BOC and Black Sabbath:
Black Sabbath Concert. With Blue Oyster Cult and Bedlam. Providence Civic Center. Feb 21 at 8. Box Office 331-6700.
I found a review of this gig in the Sat 23 Feb 1974 edition of the "Democrat and Chronicle" [Rochester NY]:
7,000 hear the 'three B's' at War Memorial
By Tom Teuber
The three B's, Bedlam, Blue Oyster Cult and Black Sabbath, descended on the War Memorial last night.
It was a rock concert, not another case of demonic possession, despite 20 years of sermons against rock and roll, the Devil's music.
Black Sabbath is among the most successful proponents of something called heavy metal music. It's the loudest, and to my ears, the most obnoxious form of that style of music begun in the early 50s' by Elvis Presley, Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis. Lots of guitar, lots of volume and very little else.
While rock and roll originally was dance music, with strong overtones of sex, the heavy bands of the 70's seem content to transmit the loudest, most repetetive sounds imaginable into the hearts and minds of their increasingly younger audiences.
How Black Sabbath has managed to record several gold albums (signifying sales of at least a million dollars) is beyond my comprehension.
On stage the group milks the same two or three droning chords for everything they're worth. The lyrics are dumb and, for the most part, depressing. Sample:
"The gates of life have closed on you - And there's just no return - You're wishing that the hands of doom could take your mind away."
17-year-old kids are responding to lyrics like that, and what's to blame? The Bomb? Vietnam? TV?
The generation gap has widened into a chasm. I'm saying the same things about Black Sabbath my parents used to say about Elvis Presley. But if a couple of hours of Black Sabbath music helps almost 7,000 kids forget about the hassles of school, parents and life in general, let them enjoy it.
The musicians are working class kids from Birmingham, England; and working class kids can relate to them.
To paraphrase another writer reviewing another band, Black Sabbath isnt' going to bring about the downfall of civilization as we know it and its audience is not a gang of Seconol freaks carrying chains. Black Sabbath is about as ominous as Bonanza (and not much more interesting, either).
Unfortunately I didn't arrive in time to hear Bedlam, the opening act. But I heard Blue Oyster Cult's high energy hour on stage, and wonder why, after several years of playing around New York State (they were known as Stalk Forrest two years ago when they played the Mardi Gras) they haven't achieved top billing.
Their lyrics are more poetic and less pretentious than those of others of similar ilk, their music is more complex, and their show-stopping front line of five guitar players is the finest finale I've seen in some time.
They did a good job of spreading that feeling that happens only rarely at concerts anymore... the fourth B for boogie.
Check out this great list of all the acts who've ever played the Warehouse:
Le Vent Souffle Ou Il Veut (The wind blows where it may) Part 1
"Drink up, girls. Happy Mardi Gras!"
It was serendipitous how easy everything seemed to come-pot, alcohol, and more. One of the guys reached in his jacket pocket and pulled out some capsules he called yellow-jackets. He handed a couple to me and told me to take two, and without giving it a second thought, I did....
I was coming to, emerging from a hazy fog... kissing someone-who? - now kissing someone else... then fading out again. I'm not sure how much time passed as I faded in and out of consciousness in this manner - at some point I was aware of arriving at the concert, but too late to see Hydra, the opening act. I was surrounded by kids smoking and drinking, just having a good time during the intermission. I knew I was about to see BOC live, right there on the stage, and I felt ecstatic at the thought.
Then the moment everyone was waiting for had arrived. The announcer walked onto center stage as a huge "Hooray" filled the auditorium... the lights grew dimmer, and suddenly I felt myself growing faint yet again... I do recall hearing the announcer's voice as he yelled enthusiastically out to the crowd: "On your feet for the amazing Blue Oyster Cult!"... and as the first note of the band's opening number resounded loudly in the air - face first to the floor I crashed.
I awoke the next morning at a large party where everyone was in some form of near nakedness, sleeping or passed out, with only a few stirring. Damn! I didn't remember how I got there or anything of what had happened. I quickly snatched up my clothes, put them on, and quietly exited the house.
I was so disappointed that I had missed BOC in NOLA the night before. I made a personal vow that I would never again risk my well-being in such a reckless fashion of over-indulgence with pills and liquor. My remaining time in the French Quarter was spent relaxing safely, and when the final day of Mardi Gras had concluded, I, like many others, began my migration home.
Missing Blue Oyster Cult's New Orleans show was not something I was proud of. Thus, as soon as I arrived home, I began making plans to attend a BOC concert elsewhere... This was to occur in California after the summer of this most adventurous year!
"Le Vent Souffle Ou Il Veut" ("The wind blows where it may") Part 1 is an excerpt from "The Incredible Adventures of Mischa" by Michele Dawn Saint Thomas
Rob Dwyer's Black Sabbath gigs lists on black-sabbath.com have this info: "Bedlam (with Cozy Powell), Lynyrd Skynyrd [replaced B.O.C.], Blue Oyster Cult [cancelled] - Rescheduled from 3/8"
However, other than that, I'd only had one other indication that BOC were ever scheduled to have played this gig when I saw this in the 9 Feb 1974 issue of "Cashbox":
An upcoming show at Long Island's Nassau Coliseum (a concert/sports hall known for its rather negative happenings) has Black Sabbath and Blue Oyster Cult headlining (with festival seating no less)...
Also, a tape of the Sabbath set from this gig recently appeared on dime and in the comments section was this:
Robert von Bernewitz: "A recording of this show does exist - possibly 2 or 3 different sources. I was at the show and recorded it with a hand held palm style recorder and my friend at the time also recorded the show. I did also see somebody on the floor with a reel to reel recorder."
"Bedlam, Cozy Powell's band, opened the show. The original Lynyrd Skynyrd followed and had dead silence after numerous songs. One track of Skynyrd's set survived. The biggest applause they got is when a cross was lowered in back of them as they were playing. I understand they were a late replacement for Blue Oyster Cult. The promoter should have been shot putting them in with Sabbath."
"Trouble followed shortly after Skynyrd's set when there was about at least an hour delay possibly more. It appeared for a while that Sabbath would not come out. Fires started springing up everywhere. Chairs caught fire and a bonfire was created in the middle of the general admission floor. Fire hoses were brought in from the concourse level and sprayed into the floor. I thought for sure the show was to be cancelled.
"The floor was ugly with a lot of drugs and booze. I was 15 at the time. Sabbath finally came out and Ozzy warned everybody he was sick with a cold. My original master was lost, but I made a copy. Since then tape has been eaten by tape decks a few times. Most of the recording survived and is about C quality."
So, it looks like the gig was originally scheduled for 8 March, but subsequently got brought forward to 25 February. BOC seemingly were on the original bill, but were replaced somewhat late in the day by Lynyrd Skynyrd - maybe they couldn't make the new date? BOC were playing New Orleans on the 24th, so they weren't exactly going to be "in the area" for this gig on the 25th...
Here's further proof that BOC cancelled and were replaced by Skynyrd:
Boris Badenov - Jul 22, 2016 6:48 PM
Reminds me of the time in Feb 1974, when we booed Lynyrd Skynyrd off the stage when they opened for Black Sabbath at Nassau Coliseum. Brought up the house lights and off they went. There's a time and a place for everything, and sometimes it's other times and other places. I seriously doubt Rafael is gonna come back with any kind of FREEBIRD.
Ban KKiller Jul 22, 2016 7:11 PM
Yeah! We booed Toto off the stage when they were so, so young. It was fun.... I thank you for booing the Skynard. They went home and went back to work!
Boris Badenov Jul 22, 2016 8:22 PM
They filled in for Blue Oyster Cult, nobody had ever heard of LS. with the Southern Drawl, they cockily stated, "This next song's Gonna Be a Hit!" WTF? Sabbath never had a HIT? How can you have a HIT if we've never heard the song??? So they played Sweet Home Alabama, which was a disaster. And besides, they had like 5 guitar players, how many people can you fit on one stage? Sabbath had 1 guitar player, that's it. Tony did the entire job, we've seen him before right here. And Tony Iommi is who we wanted to see, and Ozzy, and Geez, and Billy. Sabbath Bloody Sabbath tour, young Zakk Wylde was there, and so was Joe Satriani. After Skynyrd was off, it still took 90 minutes to get Sabbath to play.
I only initially knew about this gig thanks to a handbill appearing for it on an auction site - £450.00? Blimey - good luck with that one...
Subsequent research led me to the 19 and 26 Feb 1974 issues of the "William and Mary News" school magazine which helped confirm the gig took place:
SUNDAY, MARCH 3
COFFEE HOUR: German House, Botetourt Residences Unit 5, Lobby, 4 p.m.
FREE UNIVERSITY INTERNATIONAL FOLK DANCING CLASS: CC, Ballroom, 7:30 p.m.
ROCK CONCERT: Blue Oyster Cult with Badfinger, Nazareth & Status Quo, W&M Hall, 7:30 p.m., $5.50
Anyway - I couldn't help noticing that the next gig after this one is 9th March and then there's another gap until the 16th March. That leave ample scope for more gigs to be slotted in at some future date...
All I have to do is find them...
3-9-74 - Orpheum - BOC backed up Aerosmith on their 'Get Your Wings' Beantown debut - eye don't know if'n there were two shows, AS I attended that one behind 3 hits of potent orange microdot, and may have erased alot of memory tape loop...
BOC massively blew away the Beantown boys, and Mr. Bloom personally en-twerped mine cosmic mind with a green cyalume cylinder, AS he strolled through the pre-show crowd. Like wow, man!
I'd like to have some of what Wally's been smoking...
I only found out about this gig because I came across various gig previews and adverts in the "The Parsons Sun" [KS] in March 1974. Here's one from 14 March:
Rock Program Slated Here
Blue Oyster Cult, a rock band from New York, will perform in concert at 8 p.m. Friday in the Parsons Municipal Building in a program sponsored by the Parsons High School Senior Class and the Labette Community Junior College Student government.
The five-member group has produced two albums, "Blue Oyster Cult" and "Tyranny and Mutation."
Advance tickets are on sale in the college library, in the annex at the high school and at Adam's Rib for $4. Tickets at the door will be $4.50.
Thomas R. Lundblad, senior adviser at the High School, said he was pleased with help from area businesses and members of the community on the concert. He said that between 750 and 1,000 advance tickets had been sold. The Municipal Auditorium seats about 2,500.
Performing before Blue Oyster Cult will be Kansas, a group from Topeka. Kansas has cut an album which will be released later this month.
Students at the college and high school seniors will receive a $2 discount on tickets for the concert. Seniors and their dates will have a chicken supper in the basement of the Municipal Building following the concert, which is part of Senior Week.
Among songs performed by Blue Oyster Cult are "Transmaniacon MC" and "Stairway to the Stars."
I only know about this possible gig thanks to Howard Woods, who provided a very homemade-looking flyer for this gig. It said:
Len Trumper Presents:
Blue Oyster Cult
Saturday March 16
Holiday Inn East, Springfield IL
Special Guests and Ticket Information
To Be Announced
All the above was written in felt tip. Apart from that, it looked totally legit!!
Obviously, with BOC in Tempe the next afternoon for a big festival at 1pm, it would have been quite a trip for the gear trucks to get there from Springfield, but I suppose they could have done a "Chuck Berry"-type deal and just flown in and used whatever gear that was already there...
If anyone has any info about this potential Springfield gig, please let me know...
March 17, 1974 Doobie Brothers with special guest Blue Oyster Cult and with REO Speedwagon at Feyline Fields (in Tempe Diablo Stadium) at 1:00 pm. Barry Fey (Feyline Productions) promoted the show.
Source: March 13, 1974 "Phoenix New Times" newspaper display ad.
I only know of the existence of this gig because Lynyrd Skynyrd's contract for the gig went on ebay in June 2016. The contract mentioned the other bands on the bill were BOC and Rare Earth.
Regarding the running order, I was able to work out what I think is the correct order as the contract asked Skynyrd for a 45 minute slot starting at 7.30pm - so they obviously opened. Rare Earth would always headline over BOC back then, so BOC were obviously on second.
Despite the mention on the above flyer, I had been previously led to believe that there had only been just the one gig at the Ambassador Theatre (on the 23rd March) but the following review featured in the 23 March 1974 issue of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch clearly indicated that there were two:
Ambassador Concert by Blue Oyster Cult
by Merrill Brown
You know a rock concert is not a success when the stage announcer has to plead with the audience to call the performers back for an encore.
At the Ambassador Theater last night, Blue Oyster Cult was the deserving recipient of just such a response.
But these days, when a dollar buys only 50 cents worth, you may want to catch the other member of the double-bill, guitarist Rory Gallagher and his competent back-up group, when the show is again presented tonight at 8pm.
Gallagher successfully carries on the British-inspired blues tradition exemplified by Eric Clapton, for example. With a couple of hard-driving numbers from his latest album "Tattoo," mixed with older less-structured material, his set becomes more than an hour of fun, British rock'n'roll.
But Blue Oyster Cult was as boring as Gallagher was interesting. Only some fine guitar-work by Don (Buck Dharma) Roeser saved a performance notable only for a remarkably dull drum solo by Albert Bouchard.
I first saw BOC on 3/23/74 in St. Louis at the Ambassador theater. It was the first of many times I've seen them, lost count actually. It was also just my second concert ever. The opener was Rory Gallagher who was kickass.
They previewed several songs from the yet to be released Secret Treaties LP. The standout songs I remembered most were Flaming Telepaths, Astronomy, Harvester of Eyes and Cities on Flame.
I first heard of BOC in Circus magazine, and then got Tyranny and Mutation free with a subscription to Creem Magazine. I was hooked.
The above flyer for the Ambassador Theater lists two dates for the venue - the 22nd and the 23rd March. It also lists Captain Beyond as an additional opening act.
The show I saw definitely did NOT include Captain Beyond, I know I'd remember that and have pictures. They may have played 2 nights (one with Captain Beyond and one without).
But when I bought tickets I have no recollection of having 2 nights to choose from. It's possible that the flyer is a misprint or 2 nights were scheduled and one was cancelled.
That flyer jogged my memory - I had tix for the T-Rex show on the flyer! It was the olden days, I lived about 3 hours from St Louis, nowhere near me had good shows. I checked the KSHE concert line weekly and had to mail away for tix. I got row 10 or 11 I think.
The show got rescheduled and I had to return the tix to be replaced with new ones. I sent a sob story letter about how hard it was for me to get good tickets and please make the new ones at least as good as the originals - they sent me front row tickets! Then the rescheduled show was cancelled. Bummer. I'm not sure if the date on the flyer is the first date or the second.
I also saw Kiss at the Ambassador on their first tour (opening for Argent!) and saw Steppenwolf there too. Golden Earring was supposed to be the opener and got replaced by Kiss - then John Kay said they couldn't do any theatrics and Kiss walked, to be replaced by Pavlov's Dog.
Still have an article from Circus about that. Actually got to meet and Hang out with Kiss on later that year and Paul Stanley told me all about it before the article came out.
Had some good times at the Ambassador in the early 70's! That BOC show is still one of the best ever.
I am pretty sure that I attended this concert. I was thinking that it was a year or two later but that was a long time ago and my memory isn't that good -- this is the only concert at the Ambassador which seems consistent with the things I do remember well.
The weather that day was horrible it had dropped below freezing overnight with high humidity -- in St. Louis they got mainly snow but we had to drive over 100 miles to the concert and where we came from it started with an ice-storm. There were cars and trucks in the ditches and piled up on the median strip along the interstate for miles and driving was still treacherous even late in the day. At the concert there were a lot of empty seats, most likely because of the weather so we "upgraded" our seats from the 9th row to the 3rd row.
Rory Gallagher's opening was great though, as is typical, a radically different style than the headliner, but thoroughly enjoyable. BOC was outstanding, and incredibly loud -- I seem to recall that they had the wall of Marshall stacks that was fairly ubiquitous among bands in those days and they definitely had them cranked.
After the concert I tried to make a comment to my brother and I mostly heard a crackling sound at which point I thought, "Well, that can't be good". Things cleared up after a few minutes but my ears were still ringing the next day.
I don't remember a lot about the setlist but I do seem to recall that they played several songs from "Secret Treaties" - I specifically remember ME-262. I believe that was the song which they extended into a long jam which culminated in all five of them strapping on guitars and stepping to the front of the stage to play a 5-part lead.
Like I said, my memory isn't that good so I may have be mixing up songs but I remember them lined up across the stage with guitars and thinking it was a really neat idea.
One of the main things I remember from the night had to do with the group of people with whom I came to the concert. Someone got the idea of decorating several stacks of paper plates adorning each one with a "cult symbol" and a song name. There were six of us and we each carried in a couple handfuls of plates with the plan being that, upon hearing the opening strains of "Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll" we would all toss our plates into the air in unison.
Enthusiasm ran high, however, and some of the group could not contain themselves so the plates wound up taking flight quite a bit earlier in the evening than originally planned. Before long, other audience members were tossing the plates all around the auditorium. A few got tossed on stage and Eric Bloom either kicked or tossed them back into the audience. The whole thing was just a silly stunt, but I still remember the whole thing well after all of these years.
Tyranny & Mutation tour, October, 1973, warming up for Savoy Brown. White suit and white SG times, first time I had even heard of them...
I immediately went out the next day to purchase T&M, and very quickly returned to the record store ("Autumn Stone" great name for a record store/head shop!) to pick up the first album too.
I originally went with Zenman's date for this gig (Oct 73), but then I got sent this info:
I think I have found the actual date of this show: March 26, 1974!
While browsing newspaperarchive.com for BOC related stuff, I came across multiple issues of the Winnipeg Free Press from March 1974 mentioning a show at the Arena on that date featuring BOC, Savoy Brown, Tucky Buzzard, and Flash Cadillac on the bill.
Here's one such mention from the March 26 issue:
The Bay And Levi's Present
This is Boogie!
You bet they're here! So, enjoy your Spring break holiday. See them tonight at the Winnipeg arena, 7:30 p.m. sharp. See Savoy Brown, Flash Cadillac, Tucky Buzzard and Blue Oyster Cult. Tickets $4, $5 and $6. Arena Box Office opens at 6:30 p.m. Kelly Deyong Sound System and Light Show will be used.
This was followed by confirmation in a review published in the March 30 issue that the show took place, which confirmed Tucky Buzzard "lost its wings" and didn't appear while giving a glowing review of BOC:
For the first time in what seems like ages, I left the Winnipeg Arena Tuesday evening feeling totally satisfied. No kidding - what a pleasure it was to be able to see three top-rated bands perform under the same roof without any major foul-ups.
Aside from the fact that Turkey Buzzard, one of the scheduled acts, lost its wings and wasn't able to make an appearance, the entire show served as a perfect example that rock concerts really can be done up right in the arena.
The opening act, Flash Cadillac and The Continental Kids, got the joint rocking with a hilarious set of vintage golden oldies which included practically every classic rocker you could recall.
Unlike Sha Na Na, which simply parodies the music of the '50s, Flash and the gang managed to resurrect songs such as Sheila, Johnny B. Goode and Tell Laura I Love Her, to name but a few, and inject freshness and vitality into them.
At the same time, the entire group, which ranged in appearance from Butch, the bass player who looked like Joe College circa 1960, to Spike, who was nattily attired in greasy jeans, leather jacket and shades, helped capture that elusive easy-going attitude which prevailed back in the days when nobody had ever heard of moon landings, the generation gap or Led Zeppelin. Flash Cadillac, based on Tuesday's performance could wipe Sha Na Na off any stage, anytime.
Not too unexpectedly, at least from my point of view, Blue Oyster Cult did everything short of blowing the roof off the building with a dynamic set which had the crowd up and moving right from the opening number, The Red and The Black.
A program which was handed out during the show described the band's music as machine gun, teeth grinding rock, and what can I add to that other than to say that Blue Oyster Cult has to be ranked right up among the leaders in anybody's heavy metal sweepstakes.
Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser sizzled on stun guitar for the entire set, and when all five members of the group strapped on guitars for the closing number, the wall of sound which filled the arena was nothing short of astonishing. Blue Oyster Cult is an aggressive, hard-working and thoroughly entertaining band which I expect to go a long, long way.
The all new Savoy Brown seemed a bit anti-climatic following Blue Oyster's standout performance, but Kim Simmonds and his new lineup displayed enough talent during their 75-minute stay onstage to convince me that within a very short time, this could well be one of the group's best reincarnations.
The group, which has worked together for only several months, played only two familiar tunes, Tell Mama (which was dedicated to Queen Elizabeth) and Wang Dang Doodle, along with a number of extended jams based on material from its upcoming LP, which should be in the stores late next week.
Both Stan Webb, who used to front his own group (Chicken Shack) and Miller Anderson are fine guitarists and vocalists, and although much of their talents seemed wasted at times, the promise of better things to come was certainly there.
I was particularly disappointed that Webb and Simmonds didn't get involved too seriously with any dual guitar work, although I imagine part of that could be attributed to the fact that the band's members are still just discovering their capabilities as a unit.
The band, which flew in to Winnipeg on a special one-night break from its strenuous tour with Deep Purple (the two bands are heading a massive four-month tour of North) looked as if it might be suffering a let-down because of the travelling and other things involved with long tours, but still gave its best.
I was especially intrigued by Webb's bit where he weaved his way through the audience right to the middle of the arena, playing his axe all the while, while the rest of the band stood around looking bemused and probably wondering whether Webb was playing with all of his marbles.
I'd welcome this band back in Winnipeg anytime. As for the rest of the evening's proceedings, the sound system provided by Kelly DeYong of Vancouver proved to be more than adequate in taming the arena's tricky acoustics, the show was only 12 minutes late in starting compared to the usual half hour to 45 minutes and there were no long delays between bands. I was impressed, and I would presume that most of the or so people in attendance were, too. An evening well spent, and I hope to enjoy a great many more before this year is over.
Incidentally, an examination of the Winnipeg Free Press archive also serves to provide an interesting insight into the genesis of the line-up which eventually did end up playing this gig.
In the Feb 6 edition, it said this:
For everyone who has been waiting patiently, tickets for the Savoy Brown, Fleetwood Mac and Argent triple bill at the Winnipeg Arena March 26 will go on sale Friday at the usual outlets.
Yes, the popular British group which starts out on its latest North American tour tomorrow, has purchased a huge hot-air balloon valued at to promote the junket.
The balloon, which will be equipped with radio equipment so that disc jockeys can broadcast on-the-spot reports from the concerts, will travel from city to city with the group and will be tethered as near as possible to the band's concert sites.
So, originally, it was going to be Savoy Brown, Fleetwood Mac and Argent. Two days later, it was this:
The Bay and Levi's present The Show of The Year: "This is Boogie" starring FLEETWOOD MAC! SAVOY BROWN! ARGENT! KATHY DALTON! Tuesday, March 26th, p.m., at the Winnipeg Arena.
Tickets on Sale Today at Celebrity Box Office The Bay, Fourth Floor Reserved seats
Starting tomorrow tickets will also be available at all ATO outlets.
So, a fourth act, Kathy Dalton, had been drafted in to open the gig. Then on the 18th of Feb, we got this news:
All of you out there with good memories might recall an incident some six or seven years ago in which an enterprising but rather unscrupulous promoter tried to feist on Winnipeg a group masquerading as the Zombies.
Well, it appears that a similar incident almost happened again, as anyone who has read the Feb. 28 edition of Rolling Stone Magazine should know by now.
Apparently, Fleetwood Mac, which is booked to appear here March 26 along with Savoy Brown, Argent and Kathy Dalton, no longer exists, except in name.
According to the story in Rolling Stone, the group's road manager owns the name Fleetwood Mac, and thus is legally allowed to assemble any four or five musicians of his choice and book them under the title of Fleetwood Mac.
I spoke with Jerry Shore, one of the promoters of the show, on Saturday. He was quite distressed about the situation.
Mr. Shore and Joel Brandes, the show's other promoter, have deservedly built up a solid reputation in this city as a result of having booked such first-rate acts as Chicago, Savoy Brown and Rare Earth into Winnipeg.
In my many dealings with Mr. Shore over the years, I've found him to be totally honest and reliable. Over the phone, he informed me that he and Mr. Brandes are waiting to hear from American Talent International, the booking agency which handles the group.
Provided it's proven to everyone's satisfaction that Mick Fleetwood, the founder of the group, is still fronting Fleetwood Mac, no matter who happens to be with him at the time, the booking will stand.
"Under no circumstances will we allow anyone who buys a ticket to this show to be ripped off" said Mr. Shore. "Unless we're certain that we really are getting Fleetwood Mac, we won't bring the group in."
Hopefully, this will clear up much of the confusion created by the stories which are already starting to circulate around town. I should have the final word on what's being done by this weekend.
By the 2nd of March, here's how it was developing:
For the past week or so, I've been in almost daily contact with Mr. Shore and Bruce Rathbone, his partner, regarding the status of the Savoy Brown concert later this month.
The recent story confirming that the Fleetwood Mac booked for the show was a fraudulent group tossed together by the original band's manager has caused the promoters plenty of headaches.
In fact, as I'm writing, I'm expecting to receive a phone call to clear up who will be playing in the Arena March 26.
The telephone is ringing. At presstime, here's how the lineup for the Savoy Brown show stacks up.
Argent and Kathy Dalton have been dropped, and get this, have tentatively been replaced by three more acts, namely Blue Oyster Cult, Captain Beyond and Hawkwind.
If everything goes according to plan, the show may have to start as early as p.m. to give all of the bands sufficient time to play.
Stay tuned for further developments.
So, it looks like Fleetwood Mac were now gone (as they were "fraudulent"), as well as Argent and Kathy Dalton... in their place was now - "tentatively" - Blue Oyster Cult, Captain Beyond and Hawkwind
The linking of BOC and Hawkwind is interesting because I'm currently looking for at least one gig in the "midwest" (according to Albert) where they shared a bill and which was subsequently recorded by Metro Audio. This linkage makes me think that maybe it will be within this approximate time-frame where that gig - or gigs - might eventually be found to lie...
Anyway, by 9 March, some of those tentative listings had been ironed out:
Hot Flash Department: Barring practically anything short of the end of the world, here's the lineup for tht mystery show scheduled for the arena March 26.
Savoy Brown, the only holdover from the original four acts will be joined by one of my personal favorites, Blue Oyster Cult, along with Flash Cadillac and The Continental Kids, the greasy rock and roll oldies group which popped up in the high school dance scene of American Graffiti.
From what I hear, there will also be quite a light show, courtesy of Flash Cadillac, which will be used during all the groups' performances.
Oh, yes, there is still one more act to come. If I may interject several of my hopes, it certainly would be nice to see Queen, Captain Beyond, Z.Z. Top or perhaps Genesis added to the bill. Anyway, that's how things stand as of today.
So all mention of Hawkwind had disappeared, and Captain Beyond had been relegated to some sort of wish list.
The day before the gig, it was clear that people weren't happy with the axing of Fleetwood Mac, despite them being a patched up, "in name only" type of deal:
BARRING SOME SORT OF DISASTER, Winnipeg will be getting only the third rock show to hit town all year Tuesday night.
I've been meaning to do a column centred around the fact that sometimes it's practically impossible to please some people, no matter how hard you try.
Jerry Shore, one of the promoter's of The Savoy Brown This Is Boogie show, has received a number of phone calls and letters from people bitterly complaining about Fleetwood Mac being dragged off the show.
Really now, how is he supposed to feel, considering that the reason the group was deleted was because it was a phoney band bearing no relation whatsoever to the real Fleetwood Mac.
I can just imagine what the result would have been if the promoters of the show had opted for using the bogus group.
Anyway, I thought it worth including all of the above info because it gives a fascinating insight into the scrambling about the promoter must have gone through in order just to get this gig on...
BTW: this gig is listed on Bruno Ceriotti's Savoy Brown Family Tree Shows List:
Furthermore - I've just seen some clippings from the 13, 20 and 22 March 1974 editions of the "The Leader-Post" [Regina, Saskatchewan] which had been running a "This is Boogie" contest to win two tickets (plus travel and expenses) to see this gig - the draw was made on the 23rd.
I've just looked it up and it's 572 km from Regina to Winnipeg, so it was definitely worth entering that competition...
A release date of Friday 5 April 1974 is given on the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) website, and as that is a trusted source, I can have some degree of faith that it is accurate.
However, I'd have more faith in it if it would have been on a Monday...
BTW: the earliest printed ad for this LP that I can find was in the Thu 11 April 1974 edition of "The Daily Item" [Sunbury PA]...
For more details on this record, please visit the Blue Oyster Cult Songatorium page for this recording...
I recall that the gig was during Spring Break in high school and took place in the Memorial Stadium in Daytona Beach, Florida in front of a pretty small crowd - perhaps two or three hundred people.
Eric was wearing his full-length cape. It was black outside and silver inside. Seems he was wearing some high boots also, either black or silver.
Allen was wearing a solid silver "Spaceman" suit. Looked very similar to the ones that astronauts used to wear. Buck and Eric were playing red [wine] colored Gibson SG guitars. Allen played a Les Paul, seems it was sunburst during some of the tunes. He [Allen] started OD'd on keys and ended up with guitar at the end of the song. It knocked me back since I am a guitar player also.
I don't remember anything unique about the drummer or bass player. One thing that stands out is when someone up front asked "When are you going to play... [whatever title]?" Eric replied "We gotta play Diz first!" He was smiling when he said it. Sticks in my mind.
Oh, another interesting note: the fact that they only played songs from the first two albums. They definitely did not play any tunes from albums other than the first album and Tyranny.
Some of the tunes I remember were:
The Red & The Black
OD'd On Life Itself
7 Screaming Diz-Busters
Cities on Flame
Stairway to the Stars
Seems they only played briefly - perhaps only 30 minutes. Looking back, I wish they had played Transmaniacon MC, Wings Wetted Down and other obscure tunes but I don't think they did. It was the first time I saw them. At that moment, I was hooked!
One other thing - I do recall that BOC blew Rare Earth away.
I am positive this gig was a Silverhead/Blue Oyster Cult lineup only. I thumbed a ride and had to hide it from my parents.
It was an electric night, perfect weather and I remember thinking that Eric Bloom and Buck were real superstars.
By the way, Memorial Stadium was torn down long ago, but it was near Halifax Hospital.
Silverhead was a glam rock band that had short ride, I think they were British. They had an album, "Sixteen and Savaged".
OK - this is an odd one - Robert's recollections of this gig directly contradict the ticket stub above, which mark this as a Rare Earth gig with BOC in support.
My initial thoughts are that Robert might be thinking about another - different - Daytona BOC show - Bainx mentions Rare Earth and doesn't mention a third band on the bill - plus there's that stub!!
Can anyone else chip in with any info about this show - or else throw any light on a possible Silverhead support?
April 12 1974: Michigan Palace, Detroit MI: Running Order: KISS, Blue Oyster Cult, Suzi Quatro
This date was confirmed by the now offline motorcitymusicarchives.com website.
Also, the 5 April 1974 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun lists this show as "Friday 12 April 1974: Michigan Palace: Blue Oyster Cult with special guests Nazareth & Kiss, $5.00".
I just have to entertain the possibility that this show never happened. Like with the 31 Aug 1976 Jackson MI non-gig, if you ever put "Blue Oyster Cult" into an eBay search, I guarantee that you'll come up with a bunch of unused tickets for this show. Also - quite often, the seller is selling them in batches!
This would seem to indicate that the tickets were printed but not used at the time - possibly because the gig was cancelled or re-scheduled - and somebody has since come across a stack of them and is gradually trying to offload them on eBay.
If you don't believe me - here's a current eBay link - check it out and see if I'm wrong. There will always be unused Mississippi Coliseum 1976 and Michigan Palace 1974 tickets for sale there - it's just one of those things you can be certain of, like death and taxes....
One thing: you never see tickets for the next night's performance - at least, I've never seen one...
I had wondered if the next night happened also, but if you check below, you'll see "Jeffsinmidmich" confirms the gig on the 13th (at least) definitely occurred, and that Suzi Quatro replaced Nazareth as opener, so I can only presume that Suzi played this show also...
April 13 1974: Michigan Palace, Detroit MI: Running Order: KISS, Blue Oyster Cult, Suzi Quatro
This date is confirmed by the now offline motorcitymusicarchives.com website.
However, check out my thoughts on the April 12th show - if anyone can offer any help on this one, I'd be very grateful...
Yes this show happened as did the previous show, I was at this one, being my first BOC show I can tell you I would never forget it. It was my senior year in HS and the beginning of a lifelong following of the band.
Although I don't have the ticket stub or remember the exact setlist, I remember running out to buy Secret Treaties, which had just been released and the first two records after that. Cities on Flame was still being played on early FM radio at the time.
Suzi Quatro, a local girl that sang and played bass in her band and later ended up on the Happy Days TV show for a short time, opened the show, followed by KISS, whose first record we had not heard yet, and admitedly was quite the hard act to follow, but BOC was up to the challenge and changed my life forever.
The 5 April 1974 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun lists this show as "Saturday 13 April 1974: Michigan Palace: Blue Oyster Cult with special guests Nazareth & Kiss, $5.00".
So just a week before the gig, Nazareth were being advertised as the openers for both these Michigan Palace gigs, but "Jeffsinmidmich" (above) reports that Suzi Quatro definitely opened, so it must have been a fairly late switch from Nazareth...
NB: the ad above that initially appeared on "theconcertdatabase.com" seems to indicate that "Captain Beyond" was the original support act, but that obviously changed at a later date...
I also found a listing in the March 21, 1974 issue of "The Windsor Star" that listed only the 13 April date, and that too had "Captain Beyond" down as the other act on the bill..
Here is a show you do not have: 4/16/74 Riverside Theater, Milwaukee.
Capt. Beyond was to be opening act, but cancelled and a no name group Farm warmed them up.
I do not have set list but all songs on On Your Feet were played. I remember thinking when that album came out the inner sleeve looked like it could have been modeled after that theater.
Not sure if song order on OYF is the same i saw but do know that Maserati/BTBW were encore stuff.
I'd previously seen two online references to an early 70s Blue Oyster Cult Mesa College gig at Saunders Field House.
The first one was on a site called "gjfreepress.com", now unfortunately offline, in which a certain Priscilla Mangnall recounted her memories of the bands who have played at Saunders Field House.
There was Blue Oyster Cult and Sugarloaf, the Colorado-based band, formerly called Chocolate Hair (I think they played at my GJHS Senior Prom in 1971).
She provided no dating context for this and it was unclear if Sugarloaf were on the same bill as BOC. However, I then saw this on a Grand Junction Sentinel blog:
In this, Rock Cesario says:
I saw Blue Oyster Cult in Saunders Fieldhouse at Mesa College in the 1970s. Buck Dharma was at lead guitar.
I contacted him for further details...
Rare Earth was the headliner and Blue Oyster Cult was the better band that night.
If my memory serves me right it was right after Secret treaties came out. I am thinking 1974, late summer or early fall.
I back up Rocky on this one. Not sure of the date. "Secret Treaties" had just come out.
The unusual studio production hit me, and I wondered how the material would translate to stage. Very well indeed, surviving the acoustics and high volume in that gym. Young ears got a lesson.
I'll take the studio recording any day, still out there on its own planet.
But then I finally got some firm dating evidence as well as an actual review:
I think I just came across the date this gig took place from a review of the gig in the 20 April 1974 issue of the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel:
Rock groups capture Junction audience
The rock group-corporation Rare Earth, and the band, Blue Oyster Cult, launched a two-week tour, starting in Grand Junction, Thursday night before a 3,000 sellout crowd in the Mesa College Fieldhouse.
Both groups captured the musical interests and imagination of the audience with an array of sound equipment and a barrage of electric guitars. However the two groups did so with different styles.
Rare Earth, which is now incorporated with six musicians holding equal shares of stock, used its traditional heavy rock and roll sounds with a flavor of soul. It took one song to bring the audience to their feet, where they stayed for the rest of the concert. Standing, dancing, and stomping, the crowd pressed closer to the platform until it was difficult to tell where the stage began.
The band played their hit singles, "I Just Want To Celebrate," "Hey Big Brother," "I know I'm Losing You" and "Born to Wander," All of which have sold a million copies. "Get Ready," which was released in 1969 and has sold two million was also performed.
The drummer and dominate figure of the band, Pete Hoorelbeke, frequently threw spare drum sticks into the crowd. At one time he even threw a microphone into the audience so others could sing along. One female spectator insisted on dancing on the stage, and stage crew workers removed her twice.
Rare Earth went from hit to hit, only stopping three times. Flute, harmonica, organ and saxophone solos were featured, as were congo and guitar solos by Ed Cuzman and Mark Olson. The audience was quick and responsive to the movements of the musicians on stage, and the entire concert went without incident. Rare Earth has been known for its appreciative and well-behaved audiences.
The night started with an hour show by Blue Oyster Cult, regarded by many as one of the best heavy metal bands touring the states today. Although the Cult has not released any singles, they have three albums on the market with another on the way.
Forty minutes of almost non-stop music went by before the group had its listeners captivated. What broke the show open was a guitar solo by lead guitarist Donald Roeser, or Buck Dharma as he prefers to be called.
After that, the crowd rose to their feet, clapping their hands above their heads. They did not stop until the band's exit 30 minutes later. When the musicians left the platform, the gymnasium went into a roar of applause and stomping feet demanding an encore.
Blue Oyster Cult is also known for gimmicks and effects. Thursday night, organist and guitarist Eric Bloom came clad in a black cape with silver lining. He also wore knee-high silver boots with black leather pants. During a song, he claimed that he was going to be "possessed" by Lucifer, and with the help of light effects, appeared to be just that.
This was the sixth time Blue Oyster has been billed with Rare Earth. From Grand Junction, the groups are traveling to New Mexico, Texas, back to Colorado and then to California. From there, Rare Earth will return to the recording studios to finish a record that will be released in the next few months.
Before taking the name Rare Earth, the band was formally known as the Sunlighters. The group uses an estimated $65,000 - $70,000 worth of sound and musical equipment, including a baby grand piano. The six musicians don't engage in long three-to-four-month road trips as do many big bands. The members agree they become so "burned out" toward the end of a long tour, that the crowd is not getting the product worthy of the price; it is also hard on the members themselves.
"You can wake up in Detroit," says stage and production coordinator Jo Aramini, "and play that night in LA. Sometimes it can be a frightening thing. So the fellows would rather tour for a couple of weeks and then relax. Some of them are into horses now."
The review mentions the concert taking place the prior Thursday, 18 April.
Thanks Ian. The above review isn't only helpful in providing a date and a report on the gig itself, it also provides some contemporaneous info on the possibility of further unknown gigs following this one.
First of all, the review stated that Rare Earth and Blue Oyster Cult "launched a two-week tour, starting in Grand Junction, Thursday night". So, this opened the door on a series of dates over the next two weeks, if the reviewer was indeed correct.
Later on, it said that "this was the sixth time Blue Oyster has been billed with Rare Earth". Highly specific, so I just checked my lists, and it was correct - here are the first five BOC/Rare Earth gigs:
08 Sep 1972: Williamsburg VA
16 Nov 1973: Salt Lake City UT
29 Dec 1973: Indianapolis IN
19 Mar 1974: Little Rock AR
10 Apr 1974: Daytona Beach FL
So what this says to me is that the reviewer is imparting kosher info and it would make sense to take this next bit seriously:
From Grand Junction, the groups are traveling to New Mexico, Texas, back to Colorado and then to California. From there, Rare Earth will return to the recording studios to finish a record that will be released in the next few months.
If you look at the currently known BOC schedule, you'll indeed see a gig in New Mexico (Albuquerque) with Rare Earth on the next night (19 April). So that checks out as accurate.
The night after that (20 April), yes, they were in Texas (El Paso) - however, the only thing is, I currently - anecdotally - have that down as "opening up for Redbone and Nazareth"...
I was beginning to think that maybe this El Paso gig could also have featured Rare Earth, but unfortunately, I found some evidence to the contrary - see El Paso below...
After Texas, I have nothing for BOC until 27 April in New Jersey, but according to the article, there could well be another Colorado BOC/Rare Earth gig followed by some in California.
I was at this show along with my older brother, and it was life-changing. I was a 7th grade farm kid from just up the road in Palisade where both of us had started to play guitar about a year earlier, and this was our first real concert.
I remember very little about the Rare Earth set - just images of the drummer/singer and the guitar guy with a Strat.
But for me BOC was one of the high points of youth, and made me a lifelong fan. I clearly remember the SG well before the white refinish. Pretty sure I remember Eric with a Les Paul Jr, and Alan With a Telecaster.
I remember Marshall amps and being especially blown away by Bucks Boogie, I remember hearing that Secret Treaties was the new album,
I remember my brother's friends (our ride) taking off to find the band hotel hoping to party, but I don't remember how we got home.
I wish I could verify the set list but, looking at the one from the next show (Albuquerque), I'd bet it's identical.
I'm forever grateful to Buck and the others for setting the bar so high for what great guitar and great rock music could be like.
And thanks for helping me lock down the date.
I found the following handy, but weird, review of this gig in the 29 Apr 1974 edition of the "Albuquerque Journal".
It was handy because it helpfully listed all the bands on the bill, but it was weird because BOC, despite being deemed to be "the most exciting group of the night", get hardly a mention. Rare Earth, the apparent headliners, get a mere paragraph or so, whilst Sugarloaf, after being listed in the opening, get no further mention whatsoever!!
But get this: Redbone, the second band on the bill, get the rest of the review - all 11 paragraphs of it!! To call the review grossly unbalanced and partisan would be to do a disservice to those particular concepts:
Attending Rare Earth's, Blue Oyster Cult's, Redbone's and Sugarloaf's sold-out concert at the Civic was like spending five hours at Disneyland - you get a little of everything and not enough of anything.
Watching four groups at one sitting is a definite disadvantage. The sets tend to be short and after a while it becomes hard to concentrate on each group. All the groups suffered because none of them were able to reach a peak during their performances - they weren't given enough time. The show would probably have been better if only two of the groups had performed (any two would have been fine).
Hard Rock group Blue Oyster Cult came on first and probably was the most exciting group of the night. That was the second time they've had to play such a short set here and it's a shame, too. When they headline here and are able to do a two-hour show they'll be a treat. BOC plans to tour Europe and release a live album this fall.
American Indian group Redbone was engaging. The group was both musically and visually vibrant and went over well with the audience.
Redbone was formed in Los Angeles eight years ago. Since that time the group has had three gold records in Europe (one was a controversial song, "We Were All Wounded at Wounded Knee," which was never released in the States and one in this country. The group has done many benefit shows for AIM (American Indian Movement) and was a catalyst toward getting AIM chapters set up in Europe.
In spite of occasional politically oriented songs, Redbone tries to keep their stage show nonpolitical. Explains guitarist Lolly Vegas "Music is our thing. We don't come up there and make people feel uncomfortable. We're up there to make people feel good.
All four members of Redbone - Lolly, bassist Pat Vegas, guitarist Tony Bellamy, and drummer Butch Rillero - are American Indians and are intensely proud of their heritage. That's quite obvious when they come on stage chanting and wearing outfits embellished with Indian ornaments.
Tony even comes out in the beginning of the show and dances around wearing ceremonial feathers. It's Redbone's intention to blend Indian tradition with contemporary music.
Says Pat "We still maintain our roots and our background because we'll never forget from where we come."
In spite of their glowing pride, in spite of having to combat prejudice when they were younger, the members of the band don't feel the need to be hostile toward other races. They seem very secure and down to earth, and don't let their philosophies and their pride interfere with their relationships with people in general.
Although Redbone is a group of musicians, the group's members don't confine themselves to music. They're interested making movies, doing film scores, appearing on TV, writing books, publishing music etc.
They've already made numerous TV appearances and have recently filmed more shows. This summer they will host the "Midnight Special" and will appear on a variety show called "Razzle Dazzle," which is to be the summer replacement for ABC's "Wide World of Entertainment."
Butch says that the "Razzle Dazzle" show is trying a different approach to rock music. They will use animation for the show, done by the animator for the Sonny and Cher show.
Geraldo Rivera has been working on a documentary film of the group for four years. Redbone will even have a chapter in an American Indian Studies book devoted to them. Redbone isn't being ignored, but members of the group still feel they have a way to go. They still have to "dispel myths and topple kings."
Rare Earth's performance was a disappointment. This time they were a bit boring, whereas last time they were here, they were outstanding. They just weren't very original this time.
This summer, Rare Earth is going to tour Australia, Japan, England, Germany, and Holland. They want to release a single in a month. They're halfway through their next album and hope it'll be out by June.
The reviewer mentioned that it was the "second time they've had to play such a short set here" - in case you were wondering, the first one was the previous September supporting Quicksilver Messenger Service - there's a review of that show here.
By the way, I've made the assumption that it was Rare Earth who headlined over Sugarloaf, despite "Green Eyed Lady", because Sugarloaf were cut from the review almost entirely, so you have to think that this wouldn't have happened if they'd been the main band...
However, if you know better, please let me know...
74-04-20: Civic Center, El Paso, Texas Setlist:
Opening up for Nazareth and Redbone
In the review for the Grand Junction gig on 18 April above, it said this:
From Grand Junction, the groups are traveling to New Mexico, Texas, back to Colorado and then to California. From there, Rare Earth will return to the recording studios to finish a record that will be released in the next few months.
So I was beginning to think that maybe Rare Earth might also have been on this El Paso bill - after all, the review said after the NM gig, both bands were headed to Texas.
However, when I checked, I found this listing in the Sunday 21 April 1974 issue of the El Paso Times:
This Week in El Paso...
Rare Earth rock concert 8 p.m. Sunday, Civic Center
So - Rare Earth were in El Paso, but it was the day after the BOC gig!! That's disappointing in the sense that I was just starting to believe in the touring info contained within that article. And it's so weird that it said they were starting a two-week tour together, then both bands head off to El Paso and play it separately on consecutive nights...
Of course, this doesn't mean that they didn't reunite after this and head off first to Colorado, and then venture further west together for some California dates, but it does put a bit of a dent in the concept...
At the moment, my current listing for this "two-week tour" by BOC and Rare Earth consists of just two bloody dates, which in my book, does not a "tour" make...
April 27, 1974: Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ: Running Order: Ross, KISS, Blue Oyster Cult
This date is confirmed by the Capitol Giglist on Moyssi's website.
This was the first time that I ever saw Kiss was that night.
I'm also pretty sure that at least one or two songs were recorded there for the double live album On Your Feet or On Your Knees.
The original BOC gig schedules had a 1974 Fort Wayne gig (exact date unknown) listed, but they had it down as "Embassy Theatre", the venue they played the previous year.
However, as a result of the following post, I made the assumption that this must have been a transcription error:
According to the May 03, 1974, issue of the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel newspaper, Blue Oyster Cult and opening act, Heartsfield, played the Fort Wayne National Guard Armory that evening.
The show started at 8:00 PM and tickets were a mere $5.
So, the gig was at the National Guard Armory, and not the Embassy Theatre... and that's how I have it currently listed.
I did come across a casual mention of this gig in a magazine review, although the venue isn't actually specified. Here's what it said on page 19 of the October 1974 edition of Rock Scene:
...6000 voices in Atlanta's Georgia Tech Coliseum roar their approval. BOC are on tour, driving home the message of their latest album "Secret Treaties" (Columbia).
They were in Fort Wayne last night, touching off riots in a decaying theatre, and now find themselves in the deep South, working with yet another edition of Manfred Mann and local favourites, Hydra.
Note that the Fort Wayne venue was described as a "decaying theatre"... doesn't sound like a National Guard Armory, does it...?
If anyone can throw any light on this discrepancy, please get in touch...
BTW: here's a link to an online version of the above-mentioned issue:
Actually, the whole Rock Scene archive is now online, so check it out...
KISS arrived too late to set up, and they were forced to cancel...
Running Order: Hydra, Manfred Mann's Earth Band, Blue Oyster Cult
This was a last minute road trip concert for me an my buddies. We were all fans of BOC and Manfred Mann but we knew nothing about the opening act... a band called Kiss, well there was some problem with Kiss's equipment or something and Hydra filled in which was fine with us.
I wont mention what it was that got us so buzzed that evening but this was still when you could see guys walking around with tacklebox's selling there wares like wandering pharmicists, and more often than not what they sold was what they claimed it to be.
Well by the time BOC came on were were all giggling non stop and then BOC cut loose and we all got such a nasty seriously BOC blast of evil we all sat down and just took it all in.
The one point of the show that made me exit the hall for some fresh air was when Eric Bloom was singing the words The Red Eye of Satan is upon you (or something to that effect) and then a super bright red spot popping on just behind him that seem to be aimed right between my eyes... What a freakin rush that was, to use the exact lingo of the time.. lol
Great show ill never forget and also the ride home was a tale to share in itself LOL. We all got home safely and very late.... woot!
I remember standing in line outside the Coliseum, a black limo pulled up to the gate next to me. The limo driver started blowing the horn, waiting for someone to unlock it.
Several guys with long hair, wearing t-shirts with "KISS" on them got out and went up to the gate to try to open it. After a few minutes they got back in the limo and left.
Later inside the coliseum they announced that KISS "had problems" and had cancelled.
Anyway, the concert was great, even without KISS, especially BOC.
I came across listing for this gig in the 9 May 1974 edition of Scene Entertainment Weekly":
Manfred Mann || Blue Oyster Cult: Blue Oyster Cult and Manfred Mann's Earth Band share a bill at KSU's Stark County Campus in Canton May 10. Between the heavy metal music of Blue Oyster Cult and the somewhat ethereal fusion sounds of Manfred Mann, it should be a good show. The concert begins at 8 p.m.
I was at the Kent Stark Campus gig with some buddies. One got so drunk before we got there he went back to the car to sleep it off and missed the entire gig.
It was general admission and we rushed for the stage and got in very near the front of the stage. I don't think there were seats.
Manfred Mann opened, I just remember they did Blinded By The Light.
We were all such big BOC fans, the band was great Eric and Buck were ON FIRE and I believe they closed with Born To Be Wild.
I originally heard that BOC were due to play this gig thanks to the following notice in the 24 April 1974 issue of "Spotlight", the Williamsport Area Community College school magazine
Spring Weekend 74 Previewed
Glenn Barnes, SGA President, recently announced activities that will highlight Spring Weekend. Spring Weekend '74 dates are May 9, 10, 11, 12.
The weekend begins Thursday night, May 9, with a Folk Festival in the Bardo Gym.
Professor Irwin Corry, from 7-UP commercial fame, will highlight Friday's events. The traditional All-Night Movies will follow.
On Saturday evening "Blue Oyster Cult" will start the night of concerts off at 4:00 p.m. "Manfred Mann & Earth Band" along with "Ralph" will follow "Blue Oyster Cult" to make May 11, 1974 truly a sensational happening.
However, if you check the next entry you'll see that BOC actually played Philadelphia on that date with Golden Earring, so I checked to see if the concert had been subsequently cancelled, and, if not, who actually did play the gig...
The 10 May 1974 edition of the "The Morning Call" helpfully provided the latest revised line-up, and indicated that ZZ Top had now been drafted in as head-liners...
74-05-12: Shubert Theatre, Philadelphia PA Setlist:
BOC Headliner on this one...
Bolle and the official site had this gig listed for 12 May 1974 at an unknown venue, and that's how I originally listed it also, in the absence of evidence to the contrary.
But I've now changed it to 11 May as a result of an email sent by Greg of The Tour Archive - see below...
OK - now I originally got info that Rush were the support for this show - plus I also got a note that Lynyrd Skynyrd were also on the bill...
Due to a disk crash, I lost a whole bunch of emails and so cannot put my finger on my original sources for this information, but it looks like Rush, at least, weren't on this bill (see Eric's email below).
I was just cross referencing tourdates between your BOC page and my Rush page, and can confirm the Rush definitely did NOT open for BOC on May 12, '74.
Rush's first show in the US was on May 18th in Lansing, Michigan. Prior to May 18th, they were still only touring around Toronto...
My source is Rush's first roadie, Ian Grandy:
"Before the ZZ Top gig, we'd played one, count them ONE gig in the U.S., which was some outdoor thing near Lansing Michigan."
Thanks Eric - and if anyone has any Rush tickets, handbills or anything like that, please visit Eric's site and send him scans...
This show was actually Saturday May 11, 1974 at the Shubert Theatre in Philadelphia, PA and Golden Earring was the opening act.
Sources: May 7, 1974 "The Drummer" Philadelphia underground newspaper and May 5, 1974 Levittown, PA "Buck's County Courier Times" newspaper.
I am sure Lynyrd Skynyrd didn't play this gig as they played in Fresno, CA 11th May 1974!
Also, according to this Golden Earring website, Lynyrd Skynyrd weren't in the bill:
I have since found a listing for this gig in the Sunday, April 28, 1974 edition of the "The Philadelphia Inquirer":
Blue Oyster Cult and Golden Earring, "Glitter" rock concert - Schubert, May 11.
"Glitter rock", eh? Hmmm... but by 10 May, the Inquirer had amended the listing:
Saturday: Hard Rock by Blue Oyster Cult and Holland's Golden Earring at 8 p.m. at the Shubert Theatre.
That's a bit more like it... :-)
May 14, 1974
Centennial Hall @ Augustana College
Rock Island, Illinois
Blue Oyster Cult
Brian Auger's Oblivion Express
Running order: Aerosmith, Sharks, Blue Oyster Cult
This date was confirmed by the Aragon venue website, but that now seems to be offline.
I think Chris Spedding's Sharks were the first up, but that was a long time ago, and my memories of that night may have been somewhat... ahem... distorted.
I think Aerosmith came on second, touring on "Get Your Wings" (1974) - they were already gaining some noteriety, while Sharks never made much of a dent in the US market, and by this point Andy Fraser had already left the band, replaced by one Buster Cherry Jones (I will assume that wasn't his given name!). Jones played on the second Sharks album, "Jab It In Yor Eye" (1974).
From what I've read, The Sharks broke up in early 1975, with singer Snips joining Baker-Gurvitz Army, and guitarist Chris Spedding puting out solo albums and getting involved in both the punk and rockabilly movements.
This was my first show at The Aragon as well. We sat in the 3rd or 4th row, on Buck's side, directly in front of the P.A. There was a fellow who stuck his head into one of the speaker cabinets, passed out, and remained there through the entire evening. And no, it wasn't me!
The Aragon stage was only a couple of feet off the floor at that point, but was raised to 10 feet or so shortly afterward. Great show, wasn't it Jeff?
I was also there. It was a great show. It was the first time I saw BOC and the only time Aerosmith.
ME 262 was incredibly loud. My two friends had to leave. Your recollection of the order is correct.
Aerosmith was not well known in Chicago at the time. They played second. The Sharks were first.
I worked for the promoters for this show, Celebration/Jam, and spent most of the day working, though I was able to watch the show in full.
I originally worked for Celebration (who promoted shows all over the midwestern US) and then Jam merged with them - at first they were Celebration/Jam and then Windy City. After a few years, there was a split and Jam ended up becoming the major promoter in the area until the late 1990s.
I became good friends with George Geranios and Rick Downey at this gig and both are still friends even now.
I was at this concert. It was the first time to see both Aerosmith and Blue Oyster Cult (unfamiliar with Shark).
Myself and 3 of my friends from high school went (we were sophomores and WILD)!!!! It was general admission and we managed to work our way all the way to the front on the left side of the stage. All 4 of us did "party favors" in the bathroom when we arrived!!!
My friend Kerry's mother and Uncle dropped us off and picked us up later. It was the only way my parents would eat me go lol...
Anyway, the Sharks came out, and since it was my first concert, I was jamming out as if they were the headliner. I was wearing overalls and standing the whole time. Some jerk was sitting behind me and kept yelling at me to sit down, and was pulling on the "hammer holder" on my overalls!!!! I turned around and kicked at him, causing a bit of a ruckus, but he left me alone.
My friend Juanita got so messed up, that she was drinking cups of "whatever" off of the stage!! Ok, enough about us...
When Aerosmith came on the stage, I was blown away!!! Their hard driving rock and roll was totally infectious, amazing, and I have been hooked ever since. It was when they had just came out with Get Your Wings (I think). They have been my favorite band ever since.
I had the BOC album "Secret Treaties" and was a big fan, I loved that album, Dominance Submission was my favorite song.
When BOC came out on stage, Buck Dharma was dressed in all black and silver, he had tall silver platform boots on. I will never forget it.
They kicked ASS playing everything I wanted to hear. They came out and sang "Born to be Wild" as their encore, it was AMAZING!!!! BOC played for quite a while, and all bands were well worth the $13. ticket price.
I also remember that we were supposed to meet Kerry's Mother out front of the Aragon, but the concert ran long, so she came inside to get us!!! Not a very good place for a parent to be in the mid-70's, a lot of pot smoke flowing in the air!! Kerry's Mother was screaming at us that she had seen a girl being carried out with "her breast" hanging out!!
Those were the days, concerts now could NEVER compare. I hope you enjoyed reading my story as much as I enjoyed remembering it. Thank you so much for this website!!
The only indication that I have that a gig ever took place on this date is the above small stub I saw on eBay...
Can anyone else confirm it?
I was at the gig at WK Kellogg Auditorium, May of '74. I can tell you that the opener, Catfish Hodge totally sucked and was booed off, early.
BOC's light show blew everyone away! I recall O.D.'d On Life Itself, Hot Rails To Hell, 7 Screaming Diz-Busters. They finished with ME 262, I think.
Been too long...
I was there. It was a big fieldhouse with no seats, you just sat on the floor or stood up. There may have been seats on the sides, like a hockey arena. We were in the middle on the floor.
There were many bands. First some all-girl band - a bunch of big women who rocked... never caught their name. We arrived after they started playing. I think they were the first band but there may have been another before we got there. It's possible Rick Derringer was also on that bill, but again it was a long time ago.
Then Dixie Peach from southwest Ohio area (played Allman Bros), who we would see play in bars in Oxford.
Then Billy Cobham the jazz/fusion drummer, who was awesome, played with his band.
Then BOC. They were great. Eric had his silver cape on. I remember the Cult ended the show with their 5 guitar jam, I think on Born to be Wild.
Then after a long delay, the New York Dolls. I think BOC was the headliner but the Dolls played last of the 5 or 6 bands. Most people had left because it took forever for them to reset the stage. Even for those days it was a really long time. We were wasted but wanted to stay until the end.
By then it was really late and it was a weird crowd. There were people with green hair and boy scout uniforms, things like that. We figured they followed the Dolls around. The Dolls musically were very poor after the Cult. We didn't stay for much of their set. Long ride back to Oxford Ohio for us that night.
By the way, great website. Thanks. I became a BOC fan in the summer of 73. A friend had their EP and played it for me. When I got to Miami, one of the first people I got to know was a (fellow) long haired kid who asked me what kind of music I liked. I said did you ever hear of Blue Oyster Cult? His eyes lit up, he took me to his room where he had a dynamite sound system... and BOC's first album... A great friendship was born.
I probably saw them 5 or 6 times down through the years, but I think that show in Dayton was the first.
Try this link:
This guy Souldoggie is talking about that same concert. He seems to think Billy Cobham was headlining. May be true. We were there to see the Cult but were definitely into Billy Cobham at the time too.
The rest of his description matches mine, other than the fact that he liked the Dolls and I didn't. He doesn't say a specific date other than to say 1974.
I was at the Hara Arena show on May 24, 1974 and I've just found my notes from this show.
I was incorrect in my post on the "iorr.org" board when I said there were 6 bands on this bill - there were 5. And Billy Cobham was not the headliner - the headliner was Blue Oyster Cult.
The show's promoter was Tom Weiser, a local record store owner, show promoter, and band manager.
This is the order of their appearance, however, Dixie Peach may have opened, then Isis, my notes are unclear, but I believe I have this right as far as Isis opening:
The Dolls ended up closing the show because there had been long delays during the evening which caused the show to run very late - it was way after midnight and people needed to go home, so BOC came out and then the Dolls finished. There wasn't 500 people left for the Dolls.
By the way, the Dolls made the promoter (Tom Weiser) drive to his record store, open his safe, and pay them in cash after the gig. No checks - it was cash for the Dolls.
"The Forest" was the name of Tom Weiser's record store, hence, this was "A Forest Production."
I got the bright idea to bring a smoke bomb to this show and light it and throw it on stage as Albert started the drum solo... thought it to be appropriate "cities on flame... smoke bomb...?
So, as Albert was getting it rolling, it landed on stage. I saw Sam and Albert look at it like... is that a cherry bomb (big ass firecracker)? and then it started smoking. Then Albert realized it and just went with it... blazing solo... smoke... it was a cool moment.
Years later I told Sam that was me and he said good thing I didn't catch ya or you'd been thrown out of the show as they had flash pods on the stage that could have caught fire... oops!
Hey I was young and stupid... what did I know?
OK - this is a weird one. I listed this gig initially because it was on the original BOC schedules as researched by Bolle & Co, but there was no other info.
Then I came across adverts for this gig that had Aerosmith headlining over Argent and REO Speedwagon. No mention of BOC.
So I was thinking: maybe BOC were originally scheduled to play this gig, but pulled out later for whatever reason. Then I got sent this info:
BOC behind Aerosmith again...
So Wally seems to think BOC did play it, and he even names Aerosmith as headliner, so that sort of fitted in with what I originally had...
Then I saw the following mention in the 24 May 1974 edition of The Boston Globe:
With the sun failing to set anywhere in Greater Boston with anything resembling major rock concerts this summer, it appears that the Cape is becoming the beneficiary of all the action. The Cape Cod Coliseum in Hyannis will house the seersucker series smack dab in the midst of vaccationing young America. Don Law, himself, will make it across Bourne Bridge to present a few promotions.
Tomorrow night at CCC, it's Aerosmith, Argent and REO Speedway. On Monday: Guess Who and Air. Thursday: Johnny Winter and the fast-rising 10cc. June 15: Richard Nader's Rock & Roll Revival. June 18-19: The Beach Boys. June 22: The DeFranco Family Stories. June 26: John McLaughlin and Mahavishnu Orchestra. King Crimson and Golden Earrings. June 30: Helen Reddy.
July 7: J. Geils Band. July 16: Edgar Winter July 17: David Bowie. July 19. Ella Fitzkerald and Count Basie Orchestra.
August 3: Fred Waring. August 4: Sha Na Na. August 17: Three Dog Night. The card is still incomplete and dates are subject to change.
If you were wondering who REO Speedway was or even Golden Earrings, you'd have to ask the original type-setter. And as for Ella Fitzkerald...
Anyway - the above piece appeared the day before the gig took place, so if BOC were a late draftee, it must have happened pretty late in the day...
Also, above it said "Don Law, himself, will make it across Bourne Bridge to present a few promotions" but the adverts for the gig said "Rayal Productions"...
If you search around the interwebs, you'll find a few Aerosmith and REO gig lists, and they both have this gig on their schedules, usually with no info regarding other bands on the bill.
One Aerosmith gig list (Right In The Nuts), however, did cite REO Speedwagon as also being on the bill, but again, no mention of BOC.
The elephant in the room with all of this, of course, is that BOC played this venue on 1st Sep 1974, supporting - yes, you guessed it - Aerosmith!
This is the gig I think Wally saw, and is just confused by the date.
Regarding this 25 May gig being on the original BOC schedules - my thoughts are that it may well have been scheduled for then, but was put back until September. It's telling that the known and verified 1 Sept 1974 gig was not on those schedules.
Therefore I've removed this gig from the Hot Rails gig lists. I'm sure it took place - just without BOC...
But if you know better, please let me know...
My first BOC show. It didn't happen. Last days of May, 1974.
Rain all day. No gear onstage. No one telling anyone anything. Finally, some dude came out onstage with a bullhorn, and announced the show was cancelled.
The line-up was supposed to have been:
I was so ready to see this band. Things quickly turned into a mini riot. Concession stands trashed, bottles thrown, cops injured, stage ripped up, people arrested. Shit. As I'm going to work the next morning, there's the newspaper on the kitchen table.
"Irate Rock Fans Battle Police." Being Death Moans, Io-DUH, the paper had treated it like Altamont. Mom was looking a bit weird, when I noticed yours truly was in the picture, right there on page 1. heh heh... oops.
As if that wasn't bad enough, I'm on page three also, although you can't see my face. Off to work as a stock/delivery boy for a Jewish grocery I go.
So several years ago, sitting around the folks kitchen with my near-wife, visiting for x-mas, a few unflattering stories of my youth are told, and of course, up came the concert incident. Lots of snickers and such, as mom quietly walked out of the kitchen. I just about shit all over myself when she came walking back in with "THE PAPER." Over 20 years later!! She kept it all this time!! I was speechless...
I had thought that there might have been a "make-up" gig at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines on 8th September with The Band, but that too was unfortunately cancelled.
I am from Yankton SD and was in this riot.
About 20 or so of us came down the night before, and partied on some Orange Sunshine all night in the rain. We were at the gates when the concert was cancelled and the fun began.
Looking at the picture I believe I was standing next to the guy with the straw hat on the left side of the picture.
All hell broke loose and I was hit twice with a billyclub by an irate cop on a horse out on the street. I was pretty messed up (imagine that) and just as he was about to hit me again I saw my friends driving away and they yelled at me to run.
I ran to the car and dived through the open back window. We took off for home with 9 people in the car and never looked back.
I have been trying to find info on this ordeal for quite some time. I was quite amused when I ran across this article. If you know of any more info on this please let me know.
I was there as well with some buddies. We were fresh out of high school. This was to be my 2nd BOC concert.
When we came through the gates, they took our tickets instead of tearing them in half and returning the stub. I thought it odd at the time.
Not wanting to sit out in the rain, we climbed the stairs into the grandstand which had a roof over it. We quickly noticed that there was no equipment on stage. We were early, so we weren't too concerned.
After an hour or two, the dude with the bullhorn came on stage. He was wearing a white cowboy hat. I am fairly certain he was Kenneth Fulk, then secretary and general manager of the Iowa State Fair.
From our vantage point, we could not hear a word when he obviously informed the crowd that there would be no concert and that we were obviously ripped off. Many people climbed on stage and one guy relieved Mr. Fulk of his hat. All hell broke loose.
It was obviously time to go, so we headed to the car and avoided the rampage on the way out.
I was initially indebted to Ron Fritts for sending me a copy of the above advert alerting me to the existence of this gig, and then I was further indebted to Bart van Alphen who sent me evidence (in the form of a copy of an ad that appeared in the 29 May edition of The Toledo Blade) that it was, in fact, subsequently cancelled....
Running order: Aerosmith, Blue Oyster Cult
I saw BOC in '74 and they played at the Allen Theater (Cleveland, Ohio). It was a pretty big hall (used to be a movie theatre).
BOC opened up for Aerosmith and they knocked their socks off. I mean they were fantastic way back then (even though I think they are actually tighter now-saw them at The Tangiers (small venue) in Akron last year)... but maybe I "heard" them better last year as I was sober and BOC appeared to be pretty straight too... ;-)
Thanks to the above advert from the Sun 26 May 1974 edition of the "The Akron Beacon Journal", I now know that BOC actually headlined this gig...
I also found this listing in the 30 May 1974 edition of "Scene Entertainment Weekly":
Music calendar: Blue Oyster Cult/Aerosmith:
Blue Oyster Cult headlines a concert at the Allen Theater Saturday, June 1. Known for their "heavy metal" rock 'n' roll, BOC has just recently released their third album, entitled SECRET TREATIES. Also playing that evening will be Aerosmith.
Tickets $5 adv., $6 day of show.
Running order: Aerosmith, Blue Oyster Cult
I originally had a weird report of a multi-band Summerfest gig headlined by Aerosmith for this date, but that seems to be complete bollocks - this was clearly a BOC headline gig with Aerosmith in support!
Only a few days before the gig was due to take place, newspaper listings were still advertising Queen for this gig - here's what it said in the Sunday, June 02, 1974 edition of "The San Bernardino County Sun":
Blue Oyster Cult - Queen and Nazareth, Santa Monica Civic, Friday 7:30. $6.50, $5.50, $4.50.
This would indicate that the cancellation must have been pretty late.
I went to the Santa Monica Civic show with Nazareth. What a show it was! Nazareth was very good. They were touring when Rampant came out.
BOC though, boy sold out show! Blue and gold lights, the eye from Seven Screaming Dizbusters - Lucifer has his light on youuuuu! Everybody ducked.
They did four encores - there was a mini riot when everybody rushed the stage and that was the first four songs - the Civic was the perfect place for a concert!!
And yes Queen was billed as second group but cancelled due to Brian May's illness.
Did I say four encores!!! Yes I did!! Buck actually came out sliding on his knees during encore number three doing Bucks Boogie part two!! Loud high engery show - I'm still getting over this!
Oh well life goes on...
Gig review from the June 10, 1974, issue of the Los Angeles Times:
Blue Oyster Cult in Heavy-Metal Offering
by Richard Cromelin
Blue Oyster Cult is fast emerging as America's foremost practitioner of heavy-metal, as the New York quintet ably demonstrated at the Santa Monica Civic on Friday. The trick here is to base everything on relentless, repeated riffs, yet at the same time have something going on that will at least make the monotony bearable.
BOC's ace in the hole is the twin guitar work of Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser and Eric Bloom, whose highly disciplined display of lightning teamwork puts them up there with Steely Dan's Baxter and Diaz among rock's premiere guitar duos.
The problem with BOC involves image vs. actuality. The elaborately and singlemindedly designed personality that has been built around the group would have BOC be a weighty sort of social phenomenon, a melange of fascist leanings warnings, Nazi occultism, leather-bound sex and some cosmic sort of aggression. That has little to do with the Blue Oyster Cult we see on stage.
There, it's about, as threatening as someone like the J. Geils Band, despite singer Alan Lanier's (sic) vain attempts to come off as something of a street demon. At heart, they seem to want simply to rock 'n' roll, and that discrepancy distracts from what would otherwise be an uncluttered and uncommonly good rock show.
The supporting act, Nazareth, was exceptional. The Scottish quartet hammers songs by writers as diverse as Woody Guthrie, Randy Newman and Lowell George into a Zeppelin-flavored attack, reminding of the Stones, Faces and Silverhead on the way. It's an exciting and entertaining band, one that has all the tools to gain headliner status before too long. Now where's that hit single?
Hmmm... "the twin guitar work of Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser and Eric Bloom" and "singer Alan Lanier's (sic) vain attempts to come off as something of a street demon"...?
I'm thinking a little bit more basic research would have helped alleviate the problem of readers forming the notion that old Dicky Cromelin was a bit of a knob...
This gig was also referenced in the following piece in 16 June 1974 edition of the The Daily Breeze [Torrance CA]:
Music to Arouse The Savage Breast
By Joseph Bensoua
Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser and Eric Bloom stand firm amidst the deafening din, violently crossing their guitars and sending them screeching against each other.
The two key elements of Blue Oyster Cult repeat the act in all its primitive and savage glory, heading for the climax the group has built up to.
Clenching their teeth, the two are joined by bassman Joe Bouchard, drummer Albert Bouchard and keyboardist Alan Lanier, in flushing out the remaining strands of energy left on stage and in the audience as well.
At a recent concert at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, Blue Oyster Cult proved, like many other heavy metal bands, that savagery and driving metallic sounds blend well and become the basis for an audience's release.
They're loud and boisterous and follow the theme "anything goes".
Their music, highlighted by the brilliant play of Roeser, usually offers more than enough energy and violence to satisfy the hard-core rock addict.
For the unwary, Blue Oyster Cult serves as an introduction to the world of unrelenting sounds and showmanship, a combination which is proving Blue Oyster Cult to be one of the finest bands to originate from the East Coast.
Their popularity lies not only in their music but their lyrics - a strange blend of savageness, destructiveness and a preference for the evil.
"Hot Rails to Hell," "O.D.'d on Life Itself," "7 Screaming Diz-Busters," "Career of Evil," "Harvester of Eyes" and "Flaming Telepaths" are but a few numbers that help explain what road the band is taking and highlights the attitude of Blue Oyster members.
But as maniacal and boisterous as the group is, it is safe to say that Blue Oyster Cult has toned down somewhat - not in material but in its stage act.
During its performance at the Palladium last year, the group went out of its way to impress locals since it was the band's debut in Southern California.
With mouth agape and fists clenched Bloom began to assault Bouchard's drum kit with heavy chains. The cymbals were his only, though not soley, intended victims.
This little sidelight of Bloom's crazed nature has been etched out of the group's current routine. The only parts left unchanged are the group's dress style (white suits or black leather) and Joe Bouchard's animated theatrics with his drum sticks.
It's also worth mentioning that Albert Bouchard shows some skill on guitar in addition to his fine drumming for the group.
As long as favoritism persists toward heavy metal, there will always be room for another Blue Oyster Cult.
But as long as there is only one Bloom, Roeser, Lanier and the Bouchard brothers, then there will be only one Blue Oyster Cult.
The best concert I ever attended was Blue Oyster Cult with Nazareth as the opening act, at San Diego's Golden Hall in 1974.
The solos on "Flaming Telepaths" and "Astronomy" were the best I've ever heard. Thanks Buck for being a huge part of the soundtrack to my life for over 50 years.
The original official BOC schedules had a Fresno gig (venue unknown) taking place on the 11th June but I was never happy with this as I could find zero evidence that it ever happened.
However, on the contrary, there is a fair amount of evidence that a Fresno gig did occur on the 16th June at the Selland Arena.
The likelihood of there being two Fresno gigs in the same week is extremely low so I'm therefore assuming that this gig was cancelled.
I was at this first BOC gig.
BOC were top billed with Nazareth. It wasn't the Coliseum but a smaller venue on the Pacific National Exhibition grounds. Either the Forum or the Gardens, memory fails me at the moment. Needs research.
Also saw BOC later that year, with T. Rex, at the Coliseum...
I too was at this show and it was actually in the Agrodome, which is just a stones throw east of the Pacific Coliseum right next to the Hastings Park horse racing track.
The Agrodome (built in 1963) is a circular ring building with 3,500 seats, primarily used for equestrian events. It was the first time I was in the building when the usually dirt floor was not dirt.
I don't remember why it was moved at the last minute. The PNE (Pacific National Exhibition) which operated the entire area was taken over by the provincial government in late 1973, so it may have been a labour dispute with the new unionized workers at the PNE, or just a conflicting schedule with another event.
I also went to the B.O.C. concert with T.Rex a few months later in the Coliseum. B.O.C. was great both times.
Nazareth was at their peak and their performance was excellent. Marc Bolan sounded okay but didn't look well at that other show.
OK, I initially had this venue down as the Coliseum. Then Brian, above, reckoned this gig took place at a smaller venue within the PNE grounds, but then Al said no, it was actually at the Agrodome...
So why, then, have I changed the venue back to the Coliseum, you might be wondering...? Well the reason for that is the following review from the Thursday 13 Jun 1974 edition of The Province [Vancouver] newspaper:
3,500 waited and wandered and waited...
By Jeani Read
It could have been that they were in the wrong place at the right time, or the right place at the wrong time, but it was probably both. Nazareth and Blue Oyster Cult at the Coliseum Wednesday night, and it was equally interesting to have them get here at last, and nice to have it over with.
It wasn't your average sell-out crowd; only 3,500 wandering around in the 17,500-capacity rink, waiting for something to get them off, and when nothing did they just wandered around some more, or stayed listlessly glued to their seats. A concert that was more or less unsalvageable from the start.
Nazareth opened the proceedings to an initially warm welcome from the presumably hard-core heavy-metal-electric fans assembled loosely in front of the stage, as close to the speakers as possible. And even though the enthusiasm was courageously maintained to the end, Nazareth's performance pretty well condemned them to the position of second-raters in the genre.
Some of what they do is passable, good even, but it doesn't really sustain. And in spite of the straining howling vocals and the cocky raunchy guitar, they ain't no Led Zeppelin or (God forbid) Uriah Heep, just a sorta kinda formula punk band that sorta kinda makes it and then doesn't.
Blue Oyster Cult appeared after a lengthy delay - designed, no doubt, to make the show seem longer than it actually was - and they are a curiously intriguing, curiously irritating group who sound as if their music was designed on a drawing board by an architecture student. It might be metal, but it's very mannered metal, highly stylized, skilfully composed but disdainfully delivered.
A lead singer in a silver-lined black cape who occasionally affects affected gestures doesn't really make for transfixing visual appeal, and the music - calculated, clever, with a thin fashionable edge of evil and macho decadence - touches nerve endings only in isolated stabs, and otherwise remains closely harnessed and inviolable. It's too bad that all that work on design-for-effect should come across as so artificial and self-conscious.
But then design-for-effect, for its own sake, usually does.
As usual with BOC reviews around this time, not a glowing or particularly well-informed piece of writing, but it does confirm that the venue was The Coliseum.
June '74. Portland Paramount. Nazareth opened, BOC was in the middle and a boring headliner - Lydia Pence and Cold Blood.
The original official BOC schedules had a Salt Lake City gig (venue unknown) taking place on the 16th June, but I have since discounted that in favour of a gig at the Selland Arena (see next entry) for which there is some evidence that it did occur.
Assuming that this is the case, I don't know if this proposed Salt Lake gig was actually cancelled or postponed to a later date.
I have no other Salt Lake City gigs listed for 1974, so I'm open to the idea that it may well have been postponed, but at the moment, I have no clue when that might have been.
If you can throw any light on this, please get in touch...
The original official BOC schedules had a Fresno gig (venue unknown) taking place on the 11th June, but I have since discounted that in favour of this gig at the Selland Arena five days later.
My evidence is the above poster and the following preview from the 14 Jun 1974 edition of "The Fresno Bee":
'Ten Years After' Will Give Selland Concert
Ten Years After, one of the most durable and consistent of blues-based bands from England, will perform Sunday night in Selland Arena.
Appearing with Alvin Lee and company will be Strawbs, a band best known for spawning Rick Wakeman of Yes, and Blue Oyster Cult.
Ten Years After was one of various bands from England - others: Cream, Canned Heat, Elvin Bishop - which made their debuts in the United States in 1968.
The appearance of Ten Years After in the famous Woodstock festival helped give the band a reputation as one of the sensational concert groups.
The group has had only one hit single, "I'd Love to Change The World," but they have consistently been among the top sellers in albums, most recently on the Columbia label. FM radio has provided much exposure for the group's music.
Personnel of the band is the same as it was when the group came to the US: Alvin Lee, guitar-vocals; Leo Lyons, bass; Ric Lee, Drums; Chick Churchill, keyboards.
Blue Oyster has a recent album for A & M, "Hero and Heroine," beginning to receive considerable airplay on such FM stations as Radio KFIG in Fresno.
From that last paragraph, it seems they're mixing up BOC with The Strawbs, but the above preview and the poster does tend to lend credence that BOC played this gig and not the orignal date of the 11th.
The Strawbs history site, Strawbsweb, features this same poster and also has an advert for a gig by the Strawbs with TYA on 13 June 1974 in San Francisco, which suggests that both bands were on the West Coast at this time, so that shows that I can reasonably be happy that this is kosher...
Unless, of course, you know different...
Scene 1... Van load of 17 year olds head down I-74 to the Union Auditorium. There was LSD, Weed and copious amounts of beer involved. I think I drove (here's where I say that I don't condone abuse of drugs among children and I don't know how we made it there and back alive.)
Scene 2... The show starts. I was in awe. The laser lights were spectacular and oh so loud, the music too
From what I remember I know for sure that they played - Bucks Boogie, Seven Screaming Dizbusters, and at some point (I think at the end of the show) there were 5 Guitars.
I'm seeming to recall Career of Evil, Stairway to the Stars, Flaming Telepath, Dominance and Submission, and Cities on Flame (I know Albert sang a couple times). Albert was all over the stage from what I recall, like a madman. I was weirded out by his leather shorts though.
During Bucks Boogie I couldn't take my eyes off this guy who could play this fast, this well! I kept thinking I wish I could do that with my guitar (fade to 17 year-old me with a record and turntable, and my guitar trying to figure out just some of the rhythm to Dominance and Submission). That show really made him stand out to me, that's why he's my favorite oyster.
There was also a drum an bass solo. I can't remember what encore was done but I think they came back out twice. I don't have a clue how long they played, I just knew that I wanted it to go on forever. For what its worth there you have it.
I was at this show, as was Jeff Turley... Jeff sent me photos, years later. I don't remember any lasers, but I was in the front row and couldn't see much of the light show.
Buck Dharma brought down the house, as always, in the white suit with a black shirt, and played the white strat and also the sunburst Gibson Les Paul.
Eric had the silver boots and cape and played the black SG. The place was packed and it was hot in there.
They DID do the five guitars thing, I have a picture of Albert in his leather hot pants.
I found a review of this gig in the 28 June 1974 edition of "The Spectrum":
No Escape from 'The Cult'
by Michael V. Sajecki
Spectrum Music Critic
Punks! You know, those cagey, ageless cretins read magazines thoroughly from picture to picture. They ranted and raved in preparation for the phenomenal, heavy-metal assault which shook the walls of the Century Theater, Friday night, June 21st.
You can always count on the young fanatics for one thing. They can always smell a seething, rockin' night a mile away. And they were there in throngs, for the first big rock concert of the summer, the triple bill of The Golden Sarring, Nazareth and The Blue Oyster Cult.
As is the usual fare for such heavy-metal spectacles, the concert started late, an hour and a half to be precise. The crowds could only discuss the probable triumphant crescendos which their anti-heros, the Cult, would deliver, as well as to emulate the very pugnacious, rambunctiousness which rock and roll is all about. But the equipment for the concert had arrived. Now it was only a matter of time.
First on stage was The Golden Earring, a hard rock-"psychedelic" band from Holland, currently riding the waves of success which their current AM single, "Radar Love," has attained. The band, a better than average third billing, was quite flashy, being Europe's answer to the Edgar Winter band. They began the set with a tune entitled "Big Tree, Blue Sea" which gave lead singer/flutist Barry Hay ample opportunity for a flute solo, Ian Anderson style. Besides the flash, the members of the band are all quite proficient at what they do; Cesar Zuiderwijk on drums keeping the pulse steady, Rinus Gerritsen on bass and moog, complementing the piercing axe stabs of George Kooymans' lead guitar.
And of course they played "Radar Love" to the jubilant masses, with lead singer Barry Hay gyrating across stage like a berserk disco-dancer. The tune ended with a smoke bomb explosion as drummer Cesar Zuiderwijk catapulted himself high above his drum set, and landed center stage, tumbling and smiling. After a third tune, the band had finished its rather miniscule set. Although the crowds stomped and screamed for an encore, it was getting late, and the second band hadn't even begun.
As much as the rabble had applauded the flashy zing of the group from Holland, they were generally disinterested in the second band, Nazareth. Which is quite a shame, because Nazareth is actually a better band than the Golden Earring. Nevertheless, the group of Dan McCafferty on vocals, Manuel Charlton on guitars, Pete Agnew on bass and drummer Darrell Sweet played a very entertaining set, one which could have blown the fabled Led Zeppelin off the stage.
Performing tunes from their new album Rampant (a very good one at that), such as the fever paced "Silver Dollar Forger," or the slow, amplified ballad, "Loved and Lost" or the Boogie paced "Jet Lag," the band tried everything to establish rapport with the audience. Aside from the new tunes, it glistened on older tunes such as "Razmanaz," "Bad Bad Boy," Lowell George's "Teenage Nervous Breakdown" and a humorous, rocking rendition of Joni Mitchell's "This Flight Tonite." But the young ones were here for the Cult exclusively, and as the fellow sitting next to me woke up exclaiming, "Have those fuckers finished yet," the Nazareth members walked off stage shaking their heads in disgust.
Tension suddenly broke loose for the featured band, The Blue Oyster Cult, were next, and as is the case with all bands of some "stature," their equipment took quite a spell to be set up.
There's no doubt that the Cult was the best band to perform that night. And although they may not be Satan's envoys, they'll never go to Rock and Roll Heaven either. Lead singer, Eric Bloom, bedecked in his Nazi-suggestive finest, (black cape, silver boots, black-black-black) commandeered his troops much as a puppet master pulls his strings.
Lead guitarist "Buck Dharma" stabbed the heavens with his axe as the band romped through its hits. And every number was one. The Cult could do no wrong this night. They blazed through such numbers as "The Red and the Black", "O.D.'d On Life Itself", "7 Screaming Diz Busters" and "Cities In Flame" as well as tunes from their latest album, Secret Treaties: "ME-262", "Career of Evil" and "Dominance and Submission."
From the Cult there is no escape. Once you embark upon their death trip, there is no turning back. Yessir, Al Bouchard pounds his drums deep into the center of your skull, and brother Joe delivers a truely inspired bass solo. But its not over yet. The band cooks on Buck's Boogie, Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma slash their guitars together, and raise them, crossed, skyward, as a sacrifice to the Gods they have foresaken.
All five cultists stand, center stage,/assaulting every pair of ears present. Five guitars, Yessir! Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma hop across stage, arm in arm, and as the Cult run back out for their encore, they pounce upon their audience once again, with a rendition of "Born To Be Wild" which would make even John Kay quiver.
Al Bouchard tosses drumsticks out to the screaming adorers, as smoke begins to blanket the stage, adding to the Enigma of the already enigmatic Blue Oyster Cult. What more can be said?
This gig was confirmed as an Extensions of Man concert promotion here:
The ad clipping above indicates that this gig was actually two shows - 7pm and 10pm. The second of the two tickets above says 10pm - obviously for the second show - but the first ticket gives no time, so I can only presume it's for the first show - although not including the show time on the ticket could have potentially led to problems for the attendee...
I saw BOC/Nazareth at the State Theatre in Easton PA 6/24/74 !
The concert did not start until aronnd 1:30 in the morning - the bands arrived real late, with no sound check! So the concert was actually on the 25th !
If BOC was indeed scheduled in Greenville on the 25th, they may not of showed up because of the great distance ! PA to South Carolina is a big haul !
I'm not sure how Karl's recollections square against the two show scenario... was the first one cancelled?
There were two shows, 7pm and 10pm. I had a ticket to the 7pm show, but as your description notes, the show started three hours late. The band's gear did not arrive in time, so the 7pm show started after 10pm. That's why the second show didn't start until 1:30am!
To appease the restless early show crowd, the movie theater venue showed the movie "Fritz the Cat" to rousing cheers.
Thanks to Jeff Suhs for info on this show. Jeff co-authored a book called "KISS Alive Forever," which chronicles in detail KISS's touring history. He researched these dates over seven years so I'm very happy to benefit from his hard work. Cheers Jeff.
This is the first of a series of gigs which were supposed to have featured KISS, but Paul Stanley had to have minor throat surgery and KISS backed out of the shows.
Running order: Nazareth, Lynyrd Skynyrd, BOC
On BOC's original tour schedules, the Hampton gig was originally set to take place a day later on the 27th and this date was going to be Roanoke Civic Center show - indeed tickets exist for Roanoke dated the 26th June - see next entry.
However, for reasons currently unknown, the two dates were apparently later switched.
Another gig which was supposed to have featured KISS, but because of Paul Stanley's minor throat surgery, KISS had to back out.
Running order: Maggie Bell, BOC
I found a couple of previews for this gig in the "Daily Press" [Newport News VA] - this was in the Sunday, June 09, 1974 issue:
Maggie Bell Appears With Blue Oyster
Maggie Bell, winner of the Melody Maker Poll as the "Best Female Singer" in Great Britain for two years, will appear as special guest star June 26 at the Blue Oyster Cult concert at the Hampton Roads Coliseum.
Winner of the Sounds and the Disc international music polls, she was formerly lead singer of the Scottish rock group Stone The Crows. She is probably best known in the United States for her duet with Rod Stewart on "Every Picture Tells A Story" from the album of the same name.
She also portrayed the mother on the multi-million selling "Tommy" in which she sang lead on "Tommy Can You Hear Me?" and "Smash the Mirror" as well as the duet with Stevie Winwood, "Do You Think It's Alright."
English journalists have called her a "female Joe Cocker and a Scottish "Janis Joplin" in attempting to describe her performances.
Jerry Wexler, who produced her first solo album, says "I'm as excited about Maggie as when I first started working with Aretha Franklin."
In England, she has been something of a fashion trend-setter, with her unique carpet died hair.
And this was in the Sunday, June 23, 1974 issue:
Blue Oyster Cult Concert Slated
Blue Oyster Cult will highlight a concert Wednesday in the Hampton Roads Coliseum. The 8 p.m. concert will also feature Great Britain's Maggie Bell and Kiss, a four-member rock and roll band from New York.
The Blue Oyster Cult is one of the few bands which make Manhattan their home.
Spearheading the group's sound is Buck Dharma on guitar, called by many the most capable and imaginative guitarist to emerge lately.
Allen Lanier handles keyboard and rhythm guitar along with singer Manny Bloom. The group's other members are the Bouchard Brothers, Joe on bass and Albert on drums.
And what's so special about the type of music, the type of sounds the group produces?
Their music is as heavy as the music of Led Zeppelin, King Crimson, Black Sabbath and Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Yet there's a level of subtlety in their material unapproached by many of conventional heavy bands.
Winner of the Melody Maker Poll as the "Best Female Singer" in Great Britain for two years in a row, Maggie Bell is nothing short of a legend among music fans in England and Europe.
Her four albums as lead singer of the Scottish rock group, Stone the Crows, attracted critical acclaim both in Europe and in the U.S. She may be best known though for her duet with Rod Stewart on the latter's "Every Picture Tells A Story" track from the album with the same name.
These previews give the venue name as "Hampton Roads Coliseum". I noticed that all the actual box ads for this gig just said "Hampton Coliseum", so presumably that's just shorthand notation...
As mentioned at the top of the previous gig entry, this Salem date was clearly originally set to take place on the 26 June (see stub), with Hampton taking place on the 27th, but the dates were later switched, for reasons currently unknown.
This 27 June date for Salem has been confirmed by Jeff Suhs as one of the shows KISS cancelled out of.
Running order: Maggie Bell, Lynyrd Skynyrd, BOC
I can find no evidence to support the inclusion of Lynyrd Skynyrd ever having been on this bill - all the early listings featured just BOC and Maggie Smith, before Kiss were added to the bill.
Here's Roanoke's "The World-News" from Saturday, June 22, 1974:
Rock music fans can look forward to Blue Oyster Cult, currently among the most popular groups, at the Salem-Roanoke Valley Civic Center. Also appearing will be Kiss, one of those bands that goes in for painted faces and eccentric behavior and the fervent Maggie Bell. A longtime favorite in England, she's making it big in the US now. Thursday at 8.
And here's their completely fair and unbiased review of the gig from Friday, June 28, 1974:
Maggie Bell on stardom trek
By Ron Brown
Maggie Bell, Britain's number one female rock star, has one big problem. She came on the rock scene about five years too late.
Ms. Bell is suffering under the shadow of another bluesy female singer, the late Janis Joplin.
Although Ms. Bell is handicapped somewhat by the similarities of herself to Miss Joplin she seems intent in her current concert tour on dispelling any thought that she is just a carbon copy. This was no more in evidence than at the Salem-Roanoke Valley Civic Center last night.
Ms. Bell was superb in bringing home her message with songs such as Ringo Starr's "Oh My My," a jazzed up version of the Beatles' "I Saw Her Standing There," and a Dulaney and Bonnie number, "The Ghetto."
Ms Bell was helped by a talented and well amplified backup group that was excellent in maintaining their sound without drowning out the singer.
The flashy redhead from Scotland also did an excellent job of mixing her selections to keep the audience involved and entertained with the music.
Ms. Bell led off her performance with a couple of very good upbeat numbers that stimulated the crowd and provided a good tempo for the evening's entertainment.
There were a couple of things though that detracted from the evening's presentation.
A small segment of the 2,295 in attendance seemed intent on wrecking the enjoyment of the majority of the audience. One young man had to be physically evicted from the premises while others put off a roman candle inside the civic center.
Secondly the other group on the billing, Blue Oyster Cult, added little to the show. The group was not helped by a marble-mouthed lead singer whose speaking and singing voice was garbled beyond understanding.
Blue Oyster assaulted ears of the audience with a group of boring offbeat numbers performed with the sound modulation of an unmuffled rotary mower.
Yes, "World-News," great idea! Send a useless knobhead like Ron Brown to cover a BOC headline gig... Who was he? The gardening correspondent...??
Fortunately, the 28 Jun 1974 edition of "The Roanoke Times" was able to fill in a few more details:
2295 Attend Rock Concert
A noisy Blue Oyster Cult rock group was well received by a crowd of 2295 who braved rainy weather to come out for last night's performance at the Salem-Roanoke Valley Civic Center.
Maggie Bell, who appeared before Blue Oyster Cult, got a good reception from the audience as well.
More than 150 people received refunds for their tickets when it was announced that "Kiss," another group scheduled to appear, would not be present. A telegram received by Civic Center Manager Jack Dame said a member of the group was ill and its performance was canceled.
Dame and the promoter of the group were pleased with the turnout considering the inclement weather which cut down on attendance.
Dame said Blue Oyster Cult was the loudest group to have ever played in the civic center.
The crowd, consisting solely of young people, was orderly throughout the concert of rock music.
That also shows how late the Kiss cancellation must have been...
Another gig which was supposed to have featured KISS, but because of Paul Stanley's minor throat surgery, KISS had to back out.
Running order: Brownsville Station, Nazareth, BOC
Thanks must go to John Oltarzewskim, who unearthed a clipping from the 3 June 1974 edition of "The Asbury Park Press" which said:
At the Sunshine Inn, Larry Coryell and His Eleventh House will appear along with Truth June 15 and on June 29, it will be the Blue Oyster Cult, Nazareth and Kiss.
This might have been planned to be the rescheduled show after the 25 Jan 1974 gig had earlier been cancelled, but we know this show also was cancelled as BOC were playing Asheville NC on that night (see next entry).
Besides - BOC played John Scher's Casino Arena in Asbury Park a few days later with Aerosmith on 5 July 1974...
Another gig which was supposed to have featured KISS, but because of Paul Stanley's minor throat surgery, KISS had to back out.
Running order: Brownsville Station, Nazareth, BOC
Another cancelled KISS show...
Running order: Nazareth, BOC
It was the summer of 1974, I was a young 18 year old just learning about HARD ROCK. I had been a BOC fan for about a year. Myself and two friends Zach and Dickie, I am Cliff, had our first apartment away from the folks. We were partiers from the get go! 18 and free from home, this was the life. We all worked construction $5.00 per hour as laborers. Good money back in 74. Kept us in beer and what ever, you know what I mean.
We had an arrangement at the apartment that we would take turns selecting what LP to play next. Each person taking their turn of selecting an album. My turn was always BOC "Tyranny And Mutation". I had the album sleeve of the band, a black and white picture of them, in a picture frame next to my bed. These guys were my anti-heroes!!!! No one else ever picked BOC for their turn, because they knew I would. So between POCO, AEROSMITH and MOUNTAIN there would always be BOC selected.
So we all heard about the Alexandria Roller Rink show and were very excited. I had seen only two other concerts in my life, Raspberries at my high school and Pink Floyd at the Post Pavilion, in MD. Neither excited me like a chance to see my idols, BOC in concert. We bought 10 tickets and were ready to rock!!!!
The day of the show came, not only BOC but Nazareth, and some band I never heard of called KISS. We were getting ready to go from our apartment only 15 minutes from the Roller Rink. All of a sudden dickie comes in and is very upset. He just wrecked his Honda 750 while coming home to change for the show. The very ironic thing is he ran in to Brian (his brothers friend), who was crossing the road, to also go to the show with us. Oh well, we all went anyway and it was awesome.
The show had no seats, no stage lights, and a small stage. I was with my friends center stage 4 or 5 rows back and wasted to the BEJESUS BELT!!!! The show started with Nazareth, who I also liked, I love "Go Down Fighting", they played very well. KISS was a no show. However, I did not care, cause I never heard of em anyway! BOC came on and ROCKED the house.
I do not remember their set, song for song, but the standouts were, Last Days Of May, Cities On Flame, The Red and the Black, Buck was incredible. He was all in white and played the white Gibson SG, that was later stolen. His fingers were SOOOOO fast and his licks soooo melodic and tasteful, I will never forget. The finale was all five guitars jamming at one time, AWESOME, AWESOME, AWESOME!!!!! The entire band Allan, Buck, Eric and the Bouchard brothers were awesome!!! All of BOC literally blew me away, I had such a good BUZZ, that I will never forget BOC in this small and intimate place!
I'll never forget this show.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! A&M RECORDING ARTISTS NAZARETH! Immediately into "Razzamanazz!"
BOC doing all of Secret Treaties
The drunk guy yelling BLUE BLAZERS UP FRONT and lighting shots on fire for whoever.
My two friends were asked to go pick up a rental van, while they were waiting inside, this HUGE roadie for Nazareth comes in carrying 4 Marshall 4x12 cabs at the same time! One under each arm and one in each hand.
We were 16, and it was one of my first concerts. Awesome!
Saw the Alexandria Roller Rink show. I was very familiar with Secret Treaties at the time and as I remember they played most of it. I was standing only about 20 feet from the stage as there was no seating.
I remember all of the Band Members playing Guitars in a row and at one point Buck flicked a pick that landed very close to me but I didn't wind up with it.
Nazareth put on a good show as well. Love Hurts had just come out and they played it. I remember their Bassist being handed an alternate Bass every few songs.
The rumor before the show was about a Band called Kiss who painted their faces up who never showed up. I'm not a Kiss fan but it would have been an experience to have seen them in their infancy.
BOC was tremendous and left a lasting impression on me which made me a fan for life.
Another cancelled KISS show...
Running order: (no other acts listed) BOC
Mike Quatro Jam band was the opening act because Kiss cancelled their appearance.
The 28 June 1974 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun lists this show as Kiss and BOC, so it looks like they must have gone to press before news of Kiss's cancellation...
Nazareth opened. I may still have the ticket stub, let me look...
This was my first BOC gig. It was july 2 1974 and the venue was the Ohio Theater in Columbus, Ohio; a 1500 seat art deco style opera house. The opening act was Nazareth. Secret Treaties had been released but BOC had not yet gotten big in my area. The release of OYFOOYK would soon change that however.
I had known of the band from a promo copy of their 1st self-titled album that had been given to me by a relative who worked at a top 40 AM station 3 years earlier when I was 17. I loved that 1st album but couldn't get my friends to buy into it. Too different from the standard bs on the radio then.
Now to the day of that July 74 show. I am now a 20 yo college kid and into all the sacraments available to a true head, I went to this show with my girl and 2 friends and we were all properly lit af on mind altering substances. We had no clue what was coming.
Nazareth was a good and proper opening act, solid rock n roll. But when BOC opened up we were all completely blown away by the energy and stage presence of the band. We remained mesmerized throughout the entire show. All of us were soaked in sweat from the energy that coursed through our bodies and by the final encore we were spent.
To this day after uncounted concerts (12 BOC shows inc.) that remains one of my top concert experiences. The perfect conflation of sex, drugs and rock n roll.
A great memory of a great time.
Running order: Aerosmith, Blue Oyster Cult
Another of the run of cancelled KISS shows...
Running order: Nazareth, Rare Earth, BOC
I just found a flyer for an outdoor Blue Oyster Cult concert that I attended in Jackson Tennessee on July 7, 1974 that is not listed on your site.
My scanner is not hooked up right now, but I'll try to send a copy to you sometime. I should have the ticket stub somewhere also. Here is the info on the show from the flyer:
Off Broadway Productions
Dancing On The Grass With
Blue Oyster Cult
Special Guest Stars
Nazareth & Kiss
Larry Raspberry and the Highsteppers
Sunday July 7, 2:00 P.M.
West Tenn. Fairgrounds
Tickets: Advance $5 - Door $7
Kiss, of course, was not there. Larry Raspberry and the Highsteppers were a high profile Memphis band.
This was my first BOC concert and I was blown away. Buck Dharma in his white suit and Eric Bloom in black leather made a heavy Good vs Evil impression on my stoned brain.
During the "5 Guitars" segment of ME 262, with three guitar players and the bass player already lined up across the stage, I was totally confused when some crazy looking guy in silver shorts and no shirt runs out from the side with a guitar and starts playing.
"Where the hell did he come from, and who the hell is he? Is it a roadie? Some out of control stoner from the audience?" It wasn't until he finally ran back to the drum kit that I realized it was Albert Bouchard.
And the crossed guitars during Born To Be Wild sent me reeling and showed me anew just how powerful a Rock'n'Roll concert could be.
I found some more info about this event in "The Jackson Sun". On the day of the gig, in the 7 July 1974 edition, it mentioned (within a larger article):
The Saturday event, promoted by David Taylor and Norman Sellers, preceded a second concert to begin today at 2 p.m., featuring four groups of some national popularity - Kiss, Blue Oyster Cult, Larry Raspberry and the Highsteppers (featuring Jacksonian Joe Mulherin on trumpet), and Nazareth. This performance is sponsored by WHMT radio station in Humboldt.
So, that lists the same four bands as the flyer above, but the flyer gives the distinct impression it was to be a BOC headline gig, whereas that newspaper mention suggests they were to be second on the bill...
Then, in the next day's issue, The Jackson Sun gave this report on the day's proceedings:
Violence Mars Concert
By Pete Bird - Sun Reporter
An outdoor rock concert here was marred by violence Sunday as disgruntled fans hurled a volley of cans at the stage where sound equipment was being disassembled.
The fans, who had paid $5 and $7 to hear an eight-hour concert at the West Tennessee fairgrounds, had heard only about two hours of music when stage hands began removing equipment about 9 p.m.
At the time of the removal, more than 4,000 members of the audience had not been told the concert had ended. In fact, most fans believed that another band was to cap off the program.
As word spread through the crowd that the concert had been cut short, the can-throwing began.
"Bottles, cans and ice began to fly up on the stage," recounted Vince Alfonso Jr., a band manager. "I don't mean a few - it was a hail. We packed up and ran for our lives."
No-one was injured in the torrent of metal, but there were at least two arrests following the incident as police moved in to disperse the crowd.
The concert, touted as the area's "first annual rock spectacular," was plagued by technical problems, getting under way about 4:30 p.m. - 2 1/2 hours late.
Between 4:30 and 9 p.m. two groups - Pavlov's Dogs and Blue Oyster Cult - performed for about an hour each. A third group, Nazareth, attempted to play, but was hampered by electrical problems and left the concert.
The remainder of the day was spent ironing out problems in lighting and electricity, according to spokesmen for several of the bands.
Despite the difficulties, however, no refunds will be given, promoters told the Sun after the concert.
The crowd, most of which dawdled patiently throughout the day-long affair, was well-behaved until the can-throwing incident.
Extra police officers were summoned to the scene shortly after violence erupted. The officers, some of whom wore riot helmets, cleared the area in about 15 minutes with few incidents.
The rock concert, sponsored by WHMT radio of Humboldt and promoted by Off Broadway Productions of Memphis, initially was slated to include four groups - Blue Oyster Cult, Kiss, Nazareth and Larry Raspberry and the Highsteppers. But the list dwindled to two as technical problems eroded the concert length.
In early evening, fans were told that the Highsteppers would cap the concert, barring problems with weather or power.
Shortly before the Highsteppers were to step out, lightning flickered on the horizon. As fans waited to hear the final performance, crews suddenly scurried onstage and began removing equipment.
The public address system was disconnected before fans could be told of the decision to conclude the concert early.
Meanwhile, the manager of the Highsteppers, Vince Alfonso Jr., appealed to promoters to reconnect the public address system so that the crowd could be told of developments.
However, the pleas were rebuffed as workmen scrambled to secure the equipment.
Promoter Fred Silverstein of Off Broadway Productions told The Sun he regretted that the fans were not told the concert had ended. He said he had asked the manager of the sound equipment to postpone its removal.
In saying there would be no refunds for the concert, Silverstein added he would "try to make it up in the future".
Off Broadway, he elaborated, would like to stage another concert in Jackson next month, providing local officials were amenable.
Earlier in the day, he told The Sun the concert was a financial success, having achieved about 1,000 more ticket sales than were needed to break even
A spokesman for the sponsor, WHMT radio, said today the delays at the concert were "unfortunate" and blamed the problems on the promoter.
"We acted strictly as advertisers," said general manager Darrel Boyd. "We plan to have no future dealings with Off Broadway Productions."
Reactions of the crowd to the crippled spectacle ranged from annoyance to anger.
"It's a ripoff," declared Rick Carver of Memphis after hearing only an hour of live music in the hours he had spent at the concert.
Carver, like many fans at the concert, had made a long drive for the event.
Would he do it again?
"I don't know," chimed in Carver's companion, Steve Howe, also of Memphis. "The music's all right. But for $7, it's just not worth the wait."
Despite the fans' doubts about future concerts, promoters and band members were enthusiastic about the prospects.
Silverstein of Off Broadway praised the crowd's conduct and the action of the police under the circumstances. Alfonso of the Highsteppers lauded the audience and the spirit of cooperation that marked the concert.
The local branch of Civil Defense had bailed the concert out of its power plight by trucking in a powerful generator. And members of several local bands had pitched in with stage work, Alfonso said.
So that's interesting: from nowhere, Pavlov's Dog seem to have been drafted in to replace Kiss, BOC did indeed play second on the bill, despite the flyer, and Nazareth would have played third. The suggestion seems to be that The Highsteppers would have played last, weather and power permitting...
It's possible, of course, that BOC would have headlined as advertised had the situation been normal. But with worsening conditions, it might have been considered to be expedient to at least get the headliners on the stage and out of the way just in case the concert did have to be cut short - it's harder to demand a refund if the headliners actually played...
Another cancelled KISS show...
Running order: Nazareth, BOC
This gig date was on the original schedules, but it now seems clear it was posponed until 24 July 1974.
I went with a friend to Columbia SC to what is now known as McGuire Auditorium (or Coliseum) at the University of South Carolina. It was the summer after Secret Treaties, and would be on the southern leg of the same tour that this show is on.
I know Lynyrd Skynyrd was the band just before BOC, and I remember during "Free Bird" the now-dead lead singer screamed "we're gonna play all night, we don't need no Oysters!" Grrrr. It took me 33 years to buy the album (CD) that "Free Bird" is on.
I still have a couple of photos, but nothing that documents just when this show happened.
I saw BOC with Lynyrd Skynyrd and Golden Earring. I believe it was 10 July 1974 in Columbia SC (Coliseum).
Other than the link below, I don't have any other supporting information, though:
I went to this concert. Left out is Golden Earing was the opener. Here is a link to confirm:
I remember Golden Earing opener. Their big billboard song was of course "Radar Love".
As others listed "Lynyrd Skynyrd" was up next. I remember they opened with "Sweet Home Alabama".
BOC was the headliner and played a fantastic set. At that time Skynyrd was a tough follow, as this was their backyard and they were really climbing the charts.
I was living in Rockingham, NC (home of the 1972 Peachtree Festival at Rockingham) and I remember driving down to Columbia, SC, with my girlfriend, for the concert. I was only 15 and didn't have a driver's license. We had taken her Moms car. If I remember correctly, ticket prices were an outrageous $5 and open seating!
I found a bit of info on the BOC/Lynyrd Skynyrd gig in Columbia, South Carolina. As it turns out, the concert was at the venue then known as the Carolina Coliseum, which was located on the University of South Carolina campus. It was renamed the Frank McGuire Arena in 1977.
The 1975 USC yearbook, the Garnet and Black, mentions the show as occurring in July, and a quick check at the Lynyrd Skynyrd tour archive at the link below confirms the date as July 10, 1974.
This makes sense, since Columbia is roughly halfway between Nashville, Tennessee, and West Palm Beach, Florida, the respective sites of the July 09 and July 11 BOC shows.
Here's a "review" of this gig from 18 July 1974 issue of The Gamecock, the USC college newspaper, which mentions that Golden Earring opened the show:
"Golden Earring" Concert: Satisfying, But Nothing Much
By Hank Gilman
Gamecock Staff Writer
Last Wednesday night there was a concert in Columbia that attracted very little attention but a fairly good crowd at the Carolina Coliseum. In fact, I would have never attended the show unless I had received passes from the C.J. Strauss agency in New York handling the group that opened the show, Golden Earring.
The concert itself included two other groups, namely Lynyrd Skynard and the Blue Oyster Cult, a group that has been hailed by the New York rock critic community as the ultimate, heavy metal band in the land. They were heavy alright, just heavy enough to send me to a bar in Five Points to get drunk after two or thee songs. But I had seen the Blue Oyster Cult before and there was no sense seeing them a second time.
Then there was Lynyrd Skynard (sic). Well, concerning that, I happened to be sitting on one of the P.A. stantions with a very attractive young lady who was telling me everything I wanted to hear about myself, when a goofy looking fellow named Rusty questioned my authority to sit on the sacred stage Lynyrd Skynard would be playing on. I told him. Well, it was fine with him, as long as we would "sit still." Wouldn't want to detract from the elaborate stage show Lynyrd Skynard puts on.
But I was given passes to see Golden Earring and they are busting the proverbial charts with a single called "Radar Love".
If you have been reading Rolling Stone or any other rock trade sheet, probably seen all the various "hype" for the group. The same scene as always: flashy clothes in publicity pictures they wouldn't be caught dead wearing on the street, (as a matter of fact, after the concert they all dressed like Ivy Leaguers) and articles on the group written from publicity releases and various grandoise claims.
They played well. Not a potential super group though, as some would tell us. Let me put it this way, being as safe as I possibly can - the group played well technically but didn't show us anything that we haven't already seen over and over again.
Golden Earring has been in this country on an extensive tour on the strength of a hit single and one album. it seems that the next tour should be backed by a little more material before spoon-feeding the public. And though I couldn't find anything in the groups performance that particularly annoyed me, there just wasn't a spark. Somehow, the group was merely going through the motions, not seeming too comfortable with the material, and certainly not feeling too comfortable with the audience.
Again, this was a personal reaction at the time. I enjoyed Golden Earring but wasn't thrown for a loop either. The group now goes back home to Holland where they begin recording their second album on MCA records which should be released sometine in January.
That was the concert. A pleasant evening only for those who were dedicated enough to the groups involved to spend their well earned money on a ticket. For me, the best part of the show was watching the people backstage playing harder and better than the groups on stage.
But that's what it really is all about in the end. We all play for the groups or they won't play for us.
What the hell does that mean?
So... "a goofy looking fellow named Rusty" questioned your authority to sit on the PA, did he, Hank..? Well, I'll tell you what - I also question your authority to have the audacity to swan around the backstage pretending you're some sort of journalist looking down your nose at - and getting in the way of - all the "goofy-looking" people you meet there...
Hmmm... you wouldn't have gone, only you "received passes from the C.J. Strauss agency in New York" did you, Hank...? Wow... you must really be important, a legend in your own lunch-time...
Well, Hank - you certainly filled some space with words, I can't deny that, but the actual content of the space that you filled with those particular words was about as interesting and insightful as watching paint dry...
And by the way, it's "Skynyrd", you plank...
First gig of the resumed KISS/BOC tour as Paul Stanley had recovered from his minor throat surgery.
Running order: KISS, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
Second gig of the resumed KISS/BOC tour.
Running order: Isis, KISS, Uriah Heep, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
There was no Isis or Uriah Heep on the bill: KISS, Nazareth Blue Oyster Cult... That's it. Right after KISS was on Don Kirschner's Rock concert. KISS had just released their first album...
Third gig of the resumed KISS/BOC tour.
Running order: KISS, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
I found a listing for this gig in the 6 July 1974 edition of the "The Tampa Tribune":
Triple Decker Concert Set
Three groups will appear in a rock concert July 13 at 7:30 p.m. in Curtis Hixon Convention center. Scheduled to appear are Blue Oyster Cult, (above), Kiss and Nazareth.
Tickets are $5 limited advance and $5.50 all others and are on sale now at the usual Gulf Artists ticket outlets.
According to the 6 October 1974 edition of the St Petersburg Times, this gig attracted less than a 3000 crowd and cost the promoters, Gulf Artists, thousands.
Fourth gig of the resumed KISS/BOC tour.
Running order: KISS, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
This Baton Rouge show is often - incorrectly - dated as 5th July on various sites on the internet.
The 5th is the date that the show was originally scheduled to take place, but due to Paul Stanley's aforementioned surgery, the gig was re-scheduled for the 16th.
What's more - I know the person who recorded the July 16 performances by KISS and Blue Oyster Cult (the New York Dolls were in the middle of the bill), and he assured me that the July 5, 1974 show did not take place.
This forum link confirms the date and also points out that tickets for this gig had the headline act billed as "Blue Oyster Culp"!!
As for the Electric Ballroom gigs. I have seen on several BOC web sites a listing for BOC in Atlanta on July 17 & 18. But, the ads for the show that appear in the "Atlanta Constitution" and the "Great Speckled Bird" (an Atlanta entertainment rag) both list these shows as: KISS w. special guest Fat Chance.
So, while it makes sense that BOC would have done these gigs, I've never seen anything in print that would confirm that.
I seem to remember these shows being talked about on the local radio stations at the time but I couldnt go because Alex Cooleys served Alcohol and you had to be 18 at the time to get in and I think i was just 16 at this time.
Although I found out later that one of the guys that I went to school with was Alex Cooleys nephew and and could get me and other friends into shows at the Fox Theater across the street from the ballroom. Just to name a few names this friendship got me in free to see Mountain, Kansas, Mahagony Rush, Robin Trower oh and the crown of my free shows when Skynyrd did there 3 nights there and recorded there live album (For, From the road.)
Oh the good ole days. Hell for the robin trower show alex cooley came to the front door of the fox to let the 3 of us in... thats a sight to remember... that man was over 6 foot tall and probably weighed 400 pds and im cutting him some slack here.
See above - if anyone knows anything for definite about these two dates and can definitively rule BOC out of these two gigs - either with or without Kiss - please let me know...
I can confirm that the July 19 date in Fayetteville was definitely a BOC/KISS gig.
The running order for the show was: Nazareth, KISS, New York Dolls, Blue Oyster Cult.
1974 Fayettevile, NC The New York Dolls were supposed to open but canceled and a great local band out of Raleigh, NC replaced them. The Band was called Glass Moon. My buddy had just got back from California around March of 1974 and brought back two albums he heard on WKIS in California he said. One album was the first Kansas Album and the other one was KISS (Debut). This concert was near the end of the year. It was a last minute thing as we all piled into a van and off we went.
When I walked in I couldn't believe my eyes. There was like two hundred people standing up at the front of the coliseum and KISS was playing Firehouse. The place holds 9,000 people, can you believe this? Well Kiss blew me away and I've never been the same since. Now after there done, you have to remember they use to open for BOC at first and they did that night as well.
BOC comes on and it must of been the 3rd or 4th song this girl is standing next to this guy and a whole bunch of girls are circling them. I walk up next to this couple as I left my friends who wanted to sit the whole time anyway. This guy is the guitarist from KISS and his face had the Makeup brushed off all except the base of it so you couldn't see who it was. It was Ace Frehley. You know I have no picture to prove that to show everyone years later.
They only have my word and that's a funny thing as my daughter and I went to see Nickleback here last weekend and she had the her dream come true by getting back stage to meet the band.
During the concert she was going up to people asking if she could by their camera phone instead of enjoying the music. She tells me no one will believe dad if I don't get pictures. I told her who cares - you know you were there and that's all should matter.
Wild story you think? Well its the truth and my wife and I picked up my daughter at the MARRIOT Hotel the next morning. She is 30 yrs old in case you thought she was a younger teen.
OK - not much to go on here... The above stub appeared on eBay under the heading: "Lynyrd Skynyrd-1974 RARE Full Concert Ticket (Sedalia)"
The accompanying description went as follows:
Here is a very rare original full ticket to the 3-day Ozark Music Festival concerts that took place at the Missouri State Fairgrounds in Sedalia, MO back on July 19-21, 1974.
Bands such as Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Eagles, Aerosmith, Blue Oyster Cult, REO Speedwagon, and others performed at this 3-day concert festival.
Lynyrd Skynyrd performed at the July 20, 1974 concert just 3 months following the release of the band's 2nd LP, Second Helping, on MCA records and tapes.
So - a 3-day festival running 19-21 July. As BOC were otherwise engaged on the first two of those dates, that just leaves Sunday 21st July open for a potential BOC gig...
Does anyone know if they played this, or is that mention on eBay just a load of old bollocks?
Update: Just seen yet another eBay stub (Oct 2012) for this gig - the description was:
Ozark Music Festival July 19-21 1974 Sedalia Mo. Lynyrd Skynyrd, REO Speedwagon, Ted Nugent, Joe Walsh, Eagles, Aerosmith, Bob Seger, Ozark Mountain Daredevils, Electric Flag many others.
One of the largest outdoor festivals ever. I can't even explain what it was like. From the time we got there early and put up our tent, far from everyone else, to come back 6 hours later and not be able to find it for tents as far as you could see, to the drug culture that openly advertised with no fear using naked girls as billboards. It was by far the wildest event I had ever been to and it couldn't ever be possibly repeated.
Music was incredible alternating on two stages. I'm thinking Aerosmith had been out less than a year at that time and played on Sat morning about 10am. I'm thinking (remember it was a long time ago) friday night was Eagles, Ted Nugent, Joe Walsh & Barnstorm and Sat night was Lynyrd Skynyrd, REO Speedwagon. Ted Nugent is the one i'm not sure about on which night he played. (yeah I inhaled back then)
There were supposed to be a lot of good bands on Sunday but due to a long drive back we didn't see any acts Sunday. Advertised were Bachman Turner Overdrive, Marshall Tucker, America, Bruce Springsteen and Blue Oyster Cult among others. I've read Bruce wasn't there but his autobiography lists it as a played date.
So - there's a confirmation of sorts for the Sunday being the day BOC were scheduled to play, but no actual confirmation that they actually played.
On the other hand, the udiscovermusic.com site had a feature on this festival, and states categorically that BOC did play this gig, despite not being billed on the posters etc:
Woodstock may be the best-known rock festival, but is likely that the Ozark Music Festival held over the weekend of 19-21 July 1974 was one of the very biggest. It is estimated that around 350,000 people turned up at the Missouri State Fairgrounds in Sedalia. Initially the company that organised the event said they would sell no more than 50,000 tickets, but it was obvious from the Thursday evening that it was going to be way bigger as people arrived from far and wide, despite the first bands not scheduled to play until the Friday.
The line up was stellar with Bachman Turner Overdrive as the national headliners - their single 'Ain't Seen Nothing Yet' was on its way to topping the Billboard chart. America had already topped the charts 2 years earlier with 'A Horse With No Name' scored a couple of other top ten hits and were heading for another American top 5 record with 'Tin Man'. According to Dewey Bunnell of America,
"It was just another stop on our endless summer tour of 1974 so we were pretty buzzed, but I do remember we arrived in a helicopter on the last day and it was incredibly hot! Everyone was sweating and sunburned! Flying in we could see it was a very large festival and the first thing I remember seeing as we stepped off the chopper was a bloody t-shirt amid the debris backstage. Dan was from Missouri so he was happy to be playing this big festival in his home state and I think he had relatives waiting. It was obvious that the previous 2 days had taken a toll on the audience, but everyone was having a great time. When we took the stage the festival crew were spraying water and beer on the crowd. I remember we just joined the masses and had a good show, interacting with the smiling faces and half-naked crowd."
While the Eagles hit singles may not have been as big as America's their first two albums had done well on the chart in the USA and so they were considered headliners as well.
Similarly Joe Walsh and Barnstorm had done well on the album chart with their second long player, 'The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get'. The Marshall Tucker Band from Spartanburg, South Carolina was making a name for themselves with their brand of Southern Rock.
The festival was billed as one featuring bluegrass as well as rock so it was that The Earl Scruggs Revue and The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band were included. Other bands, not on the poster that played included The Ozark Mountain Daredevils and The Souther Hillman Furay Band - refugees from The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield and The Flying Burrito Brothers; the cream of California country rock.
Others that played but went unbilled on the poster include, Aerosmith, Blue Oyster Cult and Boz Scaggs. There was apparently even an English band that played - Babe Ruth. Not a household name by any means and it would be interesting to know how they ended up on the bill. Bizarrely, the Italian Prog band, Premiata Forneria Marconi also played and given the rest of the bill it's hard to imagine how they went over; let's just hope they didn't have to follow a bluegrass band.
Given the breadth and depth of the performers the Ozark Music Festival can justifiably claim to be one of the ten all-time great gatherings of the era. We'll leave the last word to The Missouri Senate and a committee report on the event. "The Ozark Music Festival can only be described as a disaster. It became a haven for drug pushers who were attracted from throughout the United States. The scene made the degradation of Sodom and Gomorrah appear mild. Natural and unnatural sex acts became a spectator sport. Frequently, nude women promoted drugs with advertisements on their bodies."
So, if the above had me leaning more to the conclusion that BOC did actually play on the Sunday, the following presented a different perspective:
BOC definitely did not play at this event with several confirmed gigs in the South that weekend, BTO canceled and Jefferson Starship also canceled.
Bruce Springsteen failed to arrive due to old tour van breakdown (was payed his $500 fee anyway) with the highlight, Joe Walsh and Barnstorm, delivering a 10 star performance before Joe waltzing over to the second stage to join Eagles to finish Friday nights show.
Ted finished Saturday's show.
Again to confirm your assessment that this event will never be repeated with open air drug markets going night and day all weekend.
Worlds Largest and Craziest Party EVER without a doubt.
True music and history lovers will want to check this out!:
The youtube video linked immediately above is a fascinating document, and in the comments section I saw a link to a Facebook group page dedicated to the festival:
It's a closed group, but in the intro section they have a stab at guesstimating which bands played on which nights:
It was undoubtedly one of the hottest, most crowded and uncomfortable concerts ever, aside of Woodstock. The night before the gates were opened, the line of cars stretched 22 miles down the highway, waiting to enter the Fairgrounds. They would all be told to go find "someplace to park" and wait till 8 am Friday morning. The gates opened in the early hour of 4 am (I know this because we were in that line) and the long weekend began.
The festival featured some of the most popular bands of all time. Here's the ones that are pretty much agreed on to have played.
Nothing is set in stone, to this day, no one remembers everything about this festival.
The Ozark Mountain Daredevils & The Mahavishnu Orchestra were scheduled but did not come to the OMF.
Bruce Springsteen was also scheduled but did not make it there. The story is that Springsteen's bus broke down somewhere around Memphis. The Boss' Manager called and said they'd be there asap; he was told not to bother, they didn't have room to fit E St Band in!
BTO reportedly decided not to attend due to environmental issues. None of the reasons for these bands is confirmed, but most have heard the same reasons....take it as it is, rumors.
The bands were flown in via helicopter to perform, due to the massive amounts of people on the Fairgrounds & the traffic on U.S. 65 and U.S. 50.
Tickets were $15 per person in advance/$20 purchase on arrival. According to documents at the Katy Depot, it was originally intended to be a bluegrass festival with about 50,000 people in attendance.
The reports all say 150,000 people were there, but I was there and the figures at THAT time all said that 200,000+ tickets had been sold. When you add in all the people that entered the concert after the chain link came down, I think the attendance numbers were much higher than reported.
What matters is that most survived the crowds, the heat and the lack of comforts. It was filmed by NBC, in anticipation of a movie, but those film reels were all allegedly confiscated, for evidence in a trial that would arise as a result of the damage down by the crowds to the Sedalia Fairgrounds.
I was there and saw the best and worst of human nature. Personally, I had a GREAT time and would I do it again? No way. But I "sho' had a real good time".
So, taking all with all, it does seem that BOC sat this particular gig out, (a shame as it sounds like one hell of a festival) but what remains to be determined is where does BOC fit into this picture in the first place?
They were never on any of the flyers or advance publicity - as previously mentioned, they were only ever mentioned anecdotally as having played, so were BOC ever scheduled to appear, and they cancelled, or is this just a totally "phantom" listing...?
In the absence of any evidence to the contrary, I've therefore designated this gig to be one of those mysterious phantom gigs that crop up from time to time...
Unless you know different, of course...
I spotted the following TV listing for a mysterious 30-minute programme in the 24 July 1974 issue of "The Detroit Free Press":
Blue Oyster Cult, nationally-known hard rock group
This was the first I've heard of BOC being on TV as early as 1974 and my mind boggles as to what could possibly have been shown...
I never heard of that. News to me.
In 1974, a channel 19 would usually signify a local UHF station or public programming, sounds interesting nonetheless...
CH 19 was UHF out of Central Michigan University, still is, on cable of course. Would've been cool to watch as I had just seen the band 3 mos earlier for the first time. Alas I was also working at the time and no VCR or DVR.
Back when I ran the FanClub, every now and then somebody would write me with claims of this and that, and I would immediately ask for more proof etc.
This show was mentioned to me by some random fan who also traded Live tapes... and he claimed he'd once seen a special on BÖC while in school... no details of anything other than that it was a "portrayal" of BÖC, nothing on any live clips etc. so, It could have been a presentation on this fairly then new band for the campuses...
Regardless of content, I would love to see if this was anything worthwhile at all... if anybody actually assembled such a show, I am sure they would have kept their show and even edits etc as a school project perhaps by a hard core fan...?
Don't even know where to begin in research of this new discovery...
Dunno if the channel numbers have changed since 1974, but this page reckons the PBS version of ch19 was from Delta College:
True, the channel numbers might not match up but they're both PBS stations. I wouldn't think they'd have archives on either website going that far back unfortunately.
A slightly more developed examination of the mysterious subject of possible BOC midwest TV appearances can be found under the entry for the 1973 Detroit Rooster Tail gig here...
I originally had BOC's Nashville gig listed for 9 July 1974, but then I got sent the following information:
I found an ad in the July 7, 1974, issue of the Tennesseean for a BOC / Jo Jo Gunne / Elvin Bishop concert at the Municipal Auditorium on July 24.
Blue Oyster Cult
Jo Jo Gunne
Sound Seventy Productions Presents
July 24, 7:00 p.m.
Gen. Adm. Festival Seating
$4 in advance, $5 day of show
Tickets go on sale July 11
I noticed you had a Nashville gig listed on July 9, 1974 - I'd put money on July 24 being the actual date of that show.
Looking at the evidence, so would I. There was also a second mention of the show in that 7 July issue of "The Tennesseean", below a photo:
Blue Oyster Cult, above, joins forces with Jo Jo Gunne and Elvin Bishop Wednesday, July 24 for a 7 p.m. concert at Municipal Auditorium.
Tickets are available at the usual Sound Sound Seventy locations and by mail from Sound Seventy, Ticket Central, Room 110, 1717 West End Ave., Nashville 37203.
I don't really have much to contribute, because I can't find any details.
I went to a BOC concert that was held at the Marion County International Raceway which is outside of a really small town called LaRue, Ohio which is close to Marion, OH. I believe it was the summer of 1974, probably August because it was incredibly hot.
It was an outdoor all day concert with the sun beating down on us and about 98 degrees out. It was brutal, but we still had a blast. There was a small pond right in front of the stage in which many got a cool down, most without clothes.
The NY Dolls played and there was another band there which I can't remember at the moment...
My first BOC gig was in Cleveland Ohio fall of 1973 at the Agora.
Sometime before or after that, during summer, I saw them in a field on a motocross track around Columbus. The stage was a heaped pile of dirt, with plywood on top of it, in a field with a forested area behind the stage. There was a pond that was chicken wired off from the crowd in front of the so called stage, and big old generator ran power to the stage.
Just came to me... Marion County Raceway... a car raceway. but we must have been in a field used for parking...
It was hot as hell humid and that fence didn't last long. People drug logs out of the woods so they could float in the water and hang on.
The Dolls opened, the cult played next and then the generator went down, and Aerosmith never made it to the stage if my brain serves me well.
Everyone was tripping, stoned and swimming in the pond that was fenced off. Logs were rolled out of the woods to hang on and float in the spring fed pond.
The following link has a Dolls gig chronology:
Under July 1974, there are two unknown Ohio gigs listed - maybe this was one of them...?
Update March 2014: A T-shirt was advertised on ebay for a "Dudley Creek Concert" - from the description, it seemed clear that the shirt was from this very gig.
Chip (WorldWithoutEnd) successfully bid for the shirt and told me that he'd been in contact with the seller's wife - she'd found a copy of the Marion Star's review of the gig in her local library archives and the gig was on July 27, 1974.
She also had seen the comments about the gig on this page and said:
"One story about the concert is not how my husband remembered it. My husband said that New York Dolls and Aerosmith played first, then Blue Oyster Cult. Part way through their performance, BOC blew the sound system and that was the end of the music!"
"He's also talked with a local guy who was working there the night of the concert, and he also thought BOC was the headliner and played last. My husband then talked with the stepson of the promoter, who is deceased, and he's going to try to find a copy of one of the old posters. I'll let you know what it says if he finds one."
This obviously slightly contradicts Chip's memories of Aerosmith being the headliner but not playing that day - I asked him what he thought about the above comments... could he have been that fried that he mentally wiped out Aerosmith's set?
It's funny as time goes by I'm remembering less. I do remember the Dolls because I was on the heap of dirt that they bulldozed and covered with plywood which was the stage. I remember looking at those platform shoes and makeup etc... they were very good.
Maybe BOC was cut short due to the generator going out. I'm trying to visualize them onstage and that's not registering as clear as the Dolls. Over the years that was what I remembered anyway as BOC made the show worthwhile even if Aerosmith didn't play.
I absolutely don't recall Aerosmith in any form.
I was a BIG BOC fan already and I know they had to have played because there was more music than the Dolls... my mind is fading the more I try to remember the details. Oh how I wish we could replay events such as this.
The overall event was a really good time - I do remember the swimming, and rocking out etc..
Well at least I've finally got a date for this show - if anyone has any definite info about who headlined this gig, please let me know...
I vividly remember this show, since at the time I was a huge BOC/NY Dolls/Aerosmith fan. Most comments on this show are spot on - it was incredibly hot that day.
The Dolls went on 1st and were an incredible mess. Johansen was pretty fried, and Sylvain did most of the vocals on the last few songs they did before the power blew and apparently cut their set a tad short. The stage was dug out on a hilltop so we had vantage point seats overlooking the stage sitting on the hill top.
Tyler and crew were behind the stage and directly below us so we heard their conversation where they elected to split vs. wait until BOC's sound guys fixed the PA. We watched as they left in their limo so we knew that they weren't going on.
They finally fixed the PA after a very, very long delay and it was announced that there'd be a line-up change and Aerosmith would go on after BOC.
BOC finally went on, totally kicked ass; and if memory serves their set was also cut short pretty close to the end of it with yet another PA blow out.
It was approaching dusk, and there was no outdoor lighting in the venue so right after BOC they announced that the concert was over and everyone had to exit the Raceway before dark. All hell broke loose in the crowd and they proceeded to demolish BOC's gear/lights on stage with rocks & bottles and anything not nailed down. Totally trashed the place.
On a side note several months later Creem ( or maybe Circus ? ) magazine had a "BOC vs Aerosmith - Who's the better band" issue and I wrote a letter describing the above incident firmly placing my vote with BOC that was actually published in the next month's issue, and received a few phone calls the weeks following from irate Aerosmith fans not happy with my stance.
Just thought I'd throw my 2 cents worth in.
I found this preview of the event in the 10 July 1974 edition of "The Marion Star":
MCIR Plans Full Schedule of Activities
A tractor pull, a rocket car that achieves a speed of 300 miles per hour and an art fair and rock concert are just some of the attractions to be staged at Marion County International Raceway (MCIR) within the next month.
Special drag races offering bonus prize money will be run in several classifications on the next two Sundays, and the month's biggest event, the Moses Dudley Creek Art Fair and Concert, will be held July 27.
The art fair, which is now being set up on the 1,300-acre raceway complex, will be held in the woods at the raceway where 12-foot wide paths have been cut for the dor the display of art works created by local artists.
Antique displays and flea markets also will be located at the fair, which includes with a rock concert and a possible drum and bugle corps competition.
Three rock groups, Blue Oyster Cult, Aero Smith and the New York Dolls, are already scheduled to appear in the concert, which begins at noon. The fair itself is slated to begin at 9 a.m. There is a $10 entry fee for artists wishing to exhibit their works, and entries must be submitted before July 20.
Tickets for the days events are $7.50 in advance and $10 at the gate, and can be obtained from the MCIR central office at Guthery Road or at the Marion Auto Club. No camping will be allowed at the raceway that night.
I discovered this page through a Google search, as I was looking for that concert's date. I was 20 years old at the time, on summer break from college, and lived about 20 minutes drive from there.
Descriptions are mostly good. It was incredibly hot, and the stage was set up in a remote area. All electricity came from gasoline-powered generators. It was the heat that knocked out the generators.
Here's my recollection. NY Dolls played, then Aerosmith took the stage and got part-way into their first song when the generators blew. They waited, got it restarted, started playing again, it blew again.
That's my recollection at least. Aerosmith then split. Their limo drove right past where I was sitting in the grass. Took a long time to restart the generators.
Then a stage announcement that Aerosmith would "let" BOC play next, which they did but at the end of their set the concert ended. BOC were the headliners regardless, and they were incredible. Ended with Born to Be Wild, just like the live album, with everyone out front on guitars!
OK, that was the first report I'd heard of Aerosmith actually going onstage and playing at least part of one song... and then I came across the November 1975 edition of "Circus" magazine, and noticed the following account on their letters page which confirmed what Pete had said above:
After reading your article, "Cult, Aerosmith Slug It Out," in the August 'Back Pages,' I felt compelled to write about a personal experience.
The Dudley Creek Concert was a little over two years ago. Billed as "an afternoon of hard rock," the show was set at the Marion County Speedway in Ohio with the Blue Oyster Cult, Aerosmith and the New York Dolls. We went expecting a very enjoyable show. Here's what we got:
Scheduled to start at noon, the Dolls finally strutted onstage at about 2:20 and played (?) a very sloppy 40-minute set. Over an hour later Aerosmith came on and crooned less than two bars of "Write Me" before the P.A. system blew out. The promoters, if there were any, were at a loss as to what to do. After two or three ill-fated attempts to repair the generator, Steve Tyler announced, "We don't gotta take this shit!" (I was two feet behind the stage so I'm quoting), hopped into a black limo and disappeared in a cloud of dust.
B.0.C.'s lighting manager, who was determined the show would resume (perhaps the only person there who was), was very disturbed over this. After a few hours of ass-busting work, a "schedule change" was announced, with B.O.C. playing warm-up to Aerosmith, but we knew better. B.0.C. then proceeded to rock everybody off their asses for the first time that scorching afternoon. Undoubtedly it was the best two-hour set I had ever heard them perform. After the last chords of "Born To Be Wild" died, it was announced that, due to curfew laws and the absence of lighting (it was close to 7 p.m.), the concert was over and everybody would have to leave.
The crowd totally lost it. The mob picked up everything in sight and hurled it at the stage, cheering when someone would hit a cymbal with a beer bottle. General hysteria prevailed, fights broke out and B.O.C.'s equipment was ravaged - all because five two-bit punks from Boston were "too good for this shit" and left. Didn't they realize they had FANS out there?
There is no doubt in my mind who is tops and who actually cares about music. Groups like Aerosmith are a dime a dozen. But groups like Blue Oyster Cult will remain in my rock hall of fame because they care about mu- sic and the audience, not fame, money and all the trimmings.
The stub for this gig appeared on ebay with the following info:
This auction is for a ticket stub from 1974, ZZ TOP w/ Blue Oyster Cult and Brownsville Station.
The front of the ticket only says ZZ Top. However, it's from my husbands concert days and he wrote on the back. I've included pics of the front and back.
My husband said he attended this concert on a college campus in Wichita, Kansas.
As you'll see from the back of the stub, the guy's listed:
"Metroplex" was initially - slightly - confusing as apparently that's also the name of a venue on the campus of the University of Kansas, but it has since become clear that it was actually the name of the opening band.
The only date visible on the stub itself is "29 July 1974", but that's clearly the "rain date" - thanks to Bob Corrigan sending me an image of his flyer for this gig, I now know that this show actually took place on 28 Jul 1974.
Of course, if the original date was rained off, then this gig could have been played on the 29th, but I've had no reports to that effect, so I'll stick with the 28th until I hear differently...
After previously only suspecting that BOC might have played this gig with ZZ Top, proof positive that they actually did has now arrived in the form of a youtube posting of the gig itself, together with an image of the ticket and flyer clearly showing the details of the venue plus giving a rain date of 31 Jul 1974.
Here's the description:
Blue Oyster Cult live July 30, 1974 (audio only) - Tulsa State Fairgrounds Raceway
Support band for ZZ Top (along with Brownsville Station and Metroplex)
Recording by Tom Hanford
A great set from their 'Secret Treaties' tour! As this is a complete recording for historical and archive purposes, there is a few minutes of crowd build-up both before and after the music content. In other words, my friends and I clowning around waiting for the bands to start.
Again, as with Wichita two days earlier, I have no reason to suspect that this gig was played on the rain date, so I'm sticking with the 30th unless I hear differently. Besides, Ken Langford's excellent ZZ Top page lists this gig as having taken place on that date (although it doesn't mention any of the support acts.)
Update: Here's an account of this gig which appeared in the Wednesday, July 31, 1974 issue of the "Tulsa Daily World":
About 8000 Rock Fans Sit In on Outdoor Concert Here The first outdoor concert of the summer here gave about 8000 rock music enthusiasts largely high school aged and younger, about five hours of rock music Tuesday night at the Fairgrounds Grandstand.
Music for the "Summer Jam" was provided by ZZ Top, Blue Oyster Cult, Brownsville Station and Metroplex, all of whom specialize in their own variety of full-volumned rock.
True to characteristic behavior of outdoor festival fans, the crowd's activities included numerous cans of beer plus bottle-rockets, frisbees and sweet smoke aromas filling the air.
The concert started slowly but snowballed to a foot-stomping, hand-clapping finale set by headliners ZZ Top.
ZZ Top is a three-man combo from Texas and their music is a blend of Texas blues and rock - rough, but hard driving, much as was Janis Joplin's style.
"Top" is led by lead guitarist - lead singer - song-writer Billy Gibbons and backed by the strong bottom line play of bassist Dusty Hill. Drummer Frank Beard added a tireless performance.
The crowd applauded nearly everything the Texas trio did on stage. Unfortunately, the group said goodnight to the crowd 40 minutes after starting, and although they returned for encores, their set was too short.
Blue Oyster Cult, a five-man band whose music always seems to build, gave an exciting hour-long set.
The "Cult's" music offered the evening's most variety adding organ and keyboard synthesizer to the guitars.
The tunes featured not just repetitive chords - as much of the music of the night did - but also eye-popping, ear-shattering guitar solos by lead man Donald Roeser.
"Cult" was able to combine "rock and roll boogie" music with macabre themes, such as "Career of Evil," but the crowd didn't seem to mind.
Preceding "Cult" was Brownsville Station, another three-man combo whose heavy metal chug-a-chug sound is reminiscent of the early Grand Funk Railroad.
They accomplished their goal of having the crowd 'get up and party" with their stage dancing and pleas for crowd participation ("Everybody say YEAH!") and provided the bonus of occasional good music.
The opening group Metroplex was a three guitar, one drummer band from Texas whose music consisted mainly of loud guitar riffs and whining vocals. Except for the few guitar solos which broke away from the over-all mediocrity, their music was dull at best and usually just annoying.
- Vern Stefanic
This also confirmed that the gig did, in fact, take place on the Tuesday.
After some thought, I've also decided to include the following post under this gig entry - here's the info I was originally sent:
My local Hawkwind buddy Pierre's "2 minutes of fame" came when he played in a band called Metropolis, whose biggest moment was a gig at the Oklahoma State Fair in Summer 1974 (in the Grandstand, which is (was) only on 1 side, because it is (was) also a racetrack...) as part of a bill which had BOC in the middle with ZZ Top headlining - with Metropolis opening (he says)...
He said back then his band varied their name between "Metroplex" and "Metropolis", but he is almost certain they appeared as "Metropolis", AND "if there were any other bands I can't remember them"...
Actually, he now says it MIGHT have been 73 and it "sure seems like ZZ would have been the headliner" but he does not have the best memory, and he was playing a few shows back then and also apprently some others with BOC...
This gig would seem to fit most of the requirements listed in Mike's post except for the fact that it wasn't a state fair, although it was at the fairgrounds and it was in Oklahoma.
So unless anyone knows of a third gig featuring these bands, I'll assume that the above account was actually referring to this Tulsa Summer Jam gig...
I planned to go with my friend, JH. We had previously seen BOC at Century Theater [ 21 June 1974 ] together. JH was running late to pick me up, when he arrived we just had time to speed all the way there to catch the beginning of the show, which was scheduled for 8:30, with no opening band.
On the way there JH informed me 1) he had taken some acid, and 2) had stolen a fire extinguisher which he planned to smuggle in. Fairly large. Why? I dunno.
As they were frisking people at the gate he didn't try it. Instead he put it over the fence and then we went in. I went right to my seat while he said he was going to pick up the F.E.
Just as the BOC was starting to play he showed up. Apparently he was spotted by security and just had time to grab the F.E. and run, as they chased him around (maybe they thought he had a bomb). As the concert went on, he periodically fired bursts from it, covering the people around us in a fine white powder, which set them to start threatening us, though he paid it no mind.
Towards the end of BOC's set a number of uniformed offices lined up on each side, on the wings. Though I wasn't tripping myself, I was high enough to be very paranoid. Were they just policing the show with a heavy hand, or were they after us? Or were they part of the show? I forget which BOC song was playing but something kinda fascistic... a giant flag unfurled (with the BOC/ chaos logo, I think) while the officers stood there at attention. It was visually reminiscent of the Nuremberg Rallies. I never could figure out whether it was intentional on the part of BOC or a coincidence.
The other thing was that there was a big orchestra pit between the stage and the audience but the stage was not much higher than the floor. I kept having visions of the audience attempting to leap on stage but instead plummet to their deaths, like lemmings.
I think JH might have slipped me some acid. Actually the whole concert was a dreamlike experience and if I didn't have the stub I'd wonder if it was real.
Stop Press: I have now found confirmation of this Artpark date. It was indeed 1974, as I had thought. (see clipping above)
The opening artist was Mercury - I have a suspicion this was the soul/rock artist Eric Mercury's band. EC was a black singer who recorded several albums in the 70s which included Rick Derringer and other rock hotshots.
Apparently we arrived too late to catch the opening band, so I was never sure there was an opener. This was the second time we'd seen BOC in Buffalo in less than two months. (Well, ArtPark in Lewiston is close enough to Buffalo that it's the Buffalo area, though it's actually closer to Niagara Falls).
The KISS/BOC tour resumes after a break.
Running order: KISS, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
By the way - the dates on both this Indianapolis show and South Bend show on the next day are often listed incorrectly.
We consulted KISS's itineraries, and also called the venues and/or promoters to clarify when these shows happened and the results of our findings was that the Indianapolis show took place on August 3, and the South Bend show took place on August 4.
Thanks to "The B-Man", I've now seen an advert for this show which indicates that the bill was: Chris Jagger - Kiss - The James Gang - BOC.
Here's what "The Indianapolis Star" had to say on Friday 2 August 1974:
WNAP & Sunshine Promotions Presents
Blue Oyster Cult
The James Gang
Sat. Aug. 3 - 7:00 P.M.
Indianapolis Convention Center
Tickets $5.00 Adv. $6.00 Day of Show
Chris Jagger will join the Blue Oyster Cult, the James Gang and Kiss in a concert at 7p.m. tomorrow in the Indiana Convention-Exposition Center.
Running order: KISS, Nazareth, Blue Oyster Cult
As well as this gig often being incorrectly dated as the 6th August, the venue name is often misquoted.
Please note that the correct name of the venue is Morris Civic Auditorium, not the Civic Center as is sometimes given.
I was there, and Nazareth did NOT play. Kiss opened and BOC played last.
All else correct...
I only know of the existance of this show thanks to Konstantinos Takos (responsible for maintaining and updating the giglists at www.uriah-heep.com) who kindly sent me a link to the above photo on flickr taken by "pcsf11". The photographer offers the following info on his page:
"Concert signs posted on the door of a music store at the West Shore Plaza, Lemoyne, PA. The prices at the Farm Show arena were $5 advance, $6 at the door. Photo taken in June 1974 with Canon FTb."
This doesn't conclusively prove the gig actually took place, of course, because the photo was taken over a month, maybe nearly two months before the gig, but I rate the photo to be fairly decent evidence of a Harrisburgh show on that date.
Unless you know better...
You question whether that show actually took place or not. I can't confirm it but know that I was NOT at that one despite seeing every other Harrisburg, Hershey, and Philadelphia show from 1974 through 1977.
I just know that I was such a fan by then that I was aware of shows anywhere nearby, and went to all of them. The Harrisburg arena is the closest one to home, so if they were there, I SHOULD have also been there - or at least remembered "not going".
As late as the early 90s, they were still on my radar, but I didn't attend all shows. I may be able to find out locally if the show did indeed take place.
Well, I've come across some adverts for the show taken from the Reading Eagle - the latest one is from the 28 July edition, so that's just a week before the show...
If it didn't take place, it must have been a fairly late cancellation...
Did anybody out there go?
Yes it did happen.
The BOC show was Manfred Manns Earth Band, then BOC and Uriah Heep (supporting the Wonderworld LP) headlined...
Yes this concert did take place. I was there, along with my girlfriend and best buddy. We had heard about BOC coming to the Harrisburg Farm show arena from one of the area radio stations. Star View 92.7 FM. Might have been a college station. They didn't play the top 10 pop hits but instead played this rock we hadn't heard before.
Imagine this: There are some 25 to 30 thousand young people in this small arena. Its packed from the floor to the rafters. The MC of the show comes on stage and proceeds to announce that "Tricky Dick" Nixon has resigned the presidency of the United States, (effective noon tomorrow).
The place went wild, the applause, the cheering, people hugging each other, it was unbelievable. This was preceded by 20,000 matches lighting up the dark, along with a ton of "weed". Into the 3rd or 4th song by M M the smoke has descended to the first level of seating. Since the people above level one and on up to the roof could barely see, breath, or remain conscious, someone made the wise choice to turn on the exhaust fans.
BOC took the stage and blew us away. They played for approximately an hour and half. There are numerous adjectives to describe their performance, and I have used everyone telling of my experience and how they ended their encore for the night with 5 members standing shoulder to shoulder front and center stage playing guitar. Simply fantastic!! And yet there is still another great band to play!! Can you believe this?? 6 bucks a head for three quality bands. Those were the days!!
Short break, exhaust fans running, fresh air for all. On comes Uriah Heep. This was the first band we saw that dressed up the stage. They had a long waving backdrop that changed colors with the lighting. It sort of reminded me of looking through a fish tank. We had heard that this group was the loudest band ever, and they lived up to their billing.
Somewhere in the middle of their set, the whole stage began to blur. Not sure if it was the decibel level or the acid that I dropped half way through M M. Everything cleared several seconds later. Had to have been the song.
The show was one of the best I've ever seen, and I still remember feeling the music even some 40 years later.
This gig is also confirmed on this page:
It was at the Decatur Armory. I don't know the date, but I think it was in the Summer. My brother and I were the first in line, and when there was a delay opening the doors, we asked the ushers what the deal was, and we were told that BOC blew the power grid, downtown, and the armory didn't have enough power to run their sound and stage show. Rather than play without it, BOC chose to not play, and when we found out about it, we scalped our tickets for face value and left the venue.
I heard that Pavlov's Dog and Frigid Pink went ahead and played, because they were offering a reduced rate refund, to a few people, then decided that that was a bad idea, since everyone wanted refunds. I heard that the show was enjoyable, but obviously my decision to cut and run was never regretted.
Pavlov's Dog was ran by a dude named David Surkamp, who, on March 6th, 1996, opened for BOC at KSHE concert cafe, in St Louis, where Surkamp is from, (The David Surkamp Band) and told the story of what had happened... it was ironic that I was in the audience, because when he mentioned the venue, I told him that I was at that show, and he told me and the rest of the crowd that we missed a jam session at the Decatur Ambassador Hotel, after hours. Too bad, too, cuz I may have gotten to meet Buck way back then instead of on March 6th, the night of the KSHE show.
I only know of the date of this show thanks to Howard Woods who kindly took a photo of his ticket stub for me.
However, Howard swears blind that the gig took place, whereas Marty (above) swears blind that it didn't:
All I remember is someone polishing the drums and how fast they played live. Seemed like a really long show...
Hmmm... Unless they attended shows in different phases of the multiverse, they can't both be right - does anyone know who's right?
The Pittsburgh August 20th '74 show was unique in that it was one of (I believe) two times that the band ever played The Doors' "Break On Through", which was dropped, according to Eric in either Circus or Creem magazine, because it felt too eerie, sort of implying that the spirit of Jimbo was around. I don't know about that, but it was great!
The saddest part of this story is that I used to record shows on my Radio Shack cassette machine, just for myself, but when my father needed a tape for something, he would just indiscriminately grab one from my room. Of all the dozens of tapes to choose from, he picked some great ones. But this was one of the few that had something irreplaceable on it!
It also had Rush's set from the same night - which was only "Finding My Way" and "Working Man" as they were unannounced on the bill, but we had seen them 6 days earlier at their first U.S. gig with Neil and already loved them, so were thrilled to see them again...
But that's another story.
I was there, New York Dolls were a no show. From what I seem to remember was B.O.C. played for 3 hours without a break.
Anyone got a venue name for this gig?
The venue was the Minot Municipal Auditorium.
Fargo... my 1st BOC show. It was at the Fargo Civic Auditorium. A guy comes onstage around 7:00... says the NY Dolls said something to the effect of "Fuck North Dakota, we aint coming! " We could get our money back or stay and watch BOC who agreed to do a double set.
They took the stage about 7:30 and I remember looking at a clock behind the stage that said 11:40 and they were still playing. Great show... glad the Dolls decided to skip out.
Regarding there being an opening band (Gandolf) - it was so long ago, but I don't remember a opening act. It is possible.
I do remember BOC played a regular set... came back for a one song encore, then another 2 song encore, then a 3 song encore, a four song encore, and came out yet again and played 5 more songs.
So they took quite a few breaks. I was not very familar with their songs at the time, I remember at the end they seemed to be doing a lot of covers, they might have even played a few songs twice, but it was definately almost midnight when they quit playing.
I thought the stagehand said the NY Dolls were back in Minneapolis and didn't want to come to N Dakota, so I don't know if they played the Minot show or not the night before...
Regarding the Dolls: the following link has a Dolls gig chronology:
Both this gig and the Minot gig are mentioned - though it doesn't say that they didn't play the Fargo gig.
One thing they do mention is that roadie Peter Jordan replaced Arthur Kane on bass for these two shows. If you check back up their schedule, you'll see that this had happened before - clearly by this stage, Killer Kane was struggling to keep on top of his lifestyle, and this may well have had some bearing on the Doll's Fargo cancellation.
I don't have a venue for this gig - the official site lists it as Oakland Coliseum or the Cow Palace...
Venue was Winterland. I was there...
Here are some links to a few of Larry Shorr's great BOC photos taken at this gig and which are available for order from his My Pix Rock site:
The only indication I have that a gig was scheduled to take place on this date in this location is a couple of mentions in the Southeast Missourian newspaper. Here's the first (from the 22nd August 1974 edition):
"A rock concert by the Blue Oyster Cult will be held as scheduled Aug 29 at the Arena Building since the promoter already paid the required deposit, signed conditions of use and has the entertainer under contract, City Park Superintendant Donald R Horlacher said today.
Dates for five other rock performances will be canceled, he said. The city made the decision because of the use of drugs and alcohol by youths attending such previous performances at the Arena Building, City Manager WG Lawley said."
The second was a "review" of the gig which appeared in the 30th August issue which confirmed that BOC turned up for the show, but that the power requirements were not met for their show to take place, so they didn't take the stage, despite the two supports acts (Osage Lute and Bat Jack) playing.
Apparently, attempts to hire additional generators during the day met with no success, and the newspaper article hinted at the possibility of skullduggery in this regard as the gig was not wanted by the city officials...
I was at this show. I had never heard of BOC but became a fan after the show. Aerosmith was the band everyone came to see and they blew the roof off the Coliseum, which was a hockey arena. The acoustics sucked but where I sat, I could hear pretty good.
I saw Johnny Winter there about two months before - I was down front and couldn't hear his singing. That was a long time ago.
Can any Detroitonians (?) out there confirm this gig?
It was listed in the original BOC.com gig lists, so we know it was, at least, definitely scheduled at some point, but I've never been able to any adverts or listings for it.
The "Calendar" page of the Ann Arbor Sun always seemed to list the upcoming Detroit gigs, and they include Olympia gigs but they don't include this gig.
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, of course, but it's strongly suggestive of it, so if anyone can confirm or deny this gig, I'd appreciate hearing about it...
I originally had this one down as a "played gig", but wondered whether or not if it had taken place simply because there were so many pristine-looking posters on sale on eBay for this gig (see above).
This sort of thing does tend to trigger a warning flag that maybe the show didn't happen and someone had come across a box of the unused posters years later and was now attempting to sell them...
But, as I say, I decided to list it as a gig until I got any evidence to the contrary...
This is a legitimate "non-gig," you might say.
The posters on Ebay are reproductions of the real poster for the show. It was promoted by Music Circuit, who promoted the BOC show Memorial Day weekend that was rained out.
The show seemed to come about on short notice. I was just researching the concert today using newspaper microfilm. The first ad for the Sept. 8 show was in the Des Moines Sunday Register on August 25; it only mentioned The Band.
The next Sunday, Sept. 1, the same ad appeared, but with CANCELED in big letters diagonally across it. I didn't see any news story about the cancelation in the Register or in the Tribune, the afternoon newspaper, during that week.
However, in the review of a REO Speedwagon/Focus/BOC concert (28 Oct 1974) in the Register of October 29, 1974, it said "Blue Oyster Cult was supposed to have played in Des Moines with The Band last month, but alledgedly (sic) The Band wouldn't (and didn't) do a concert with the 'Cult.' "
Was that the truth? If I see Steve White at a show some time I'll ask him. But there were factors that make me think that it may have been just a good excuse. Music Circuit promoted the show that was set for Memorial Day weekend that was rained out.
I understand that Steve was disappointed and disillusioned by the rioting that followed. There were arrests, property damage, and bad publicity.
Several other outdoor concerts in Iowa in July and August were also canceled. There was a show near Sioux City in July that was canceled, and one in the Mason City area that was moved to the Surf Ballroom and then canceled. Trouble with governmental agencies was behind both of those cancelations.
Also, the guy that promoted several concerts that summer at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds in Davenport was busted following the Eric Clapton show in late July for promoting an event where illegal drug sales were certain to occur.
My guess - and I want to emphasise, it's just a guess based on the circumstances and times - is that Music Circuit lucked into an open date on The Band's schedule. They tried to throw a show together on short notice and the logistics didn't pan out, so they pulled the plug.
Now, about the poster. Music Circuit used the same printer for their various shows during the year. The bottom half of the posters are almost identical; the date, time, and ticket prices are different, but the ticket outlets and mail order info is the same. I have no doubt that these reproductions were made from an authentic poster.
Thanks to Larry's excellent research, I can now classify this as a cancelled gig...
This was my very first BOC concert. I don't recall much in the way of details except for a few that stick in my mind. I do remember watching Tom Rush and I was a big Weather Report fan at that time and was excited to see them. Their drummer was to the right and facing in towards the rest of the band which I thought looked cool and gave a better view of his playing from the seats.
So they were very good and then the anticipation for my new favorite band, Blue Oyster Cult. By the time of their set it was dusk and they were the first band to have a really visible light show. I remember them standing in a sea of dry ice fog at one point. All very impressive to this then 19 year old.
What a mistake by the Columbia Records promo department for putting BÖC before Bromberg! The majority of the crowd left after BÖC including me.
I was glad because BÖC hit the stage around 7:30 pm EST and I didn't want to sit through David Bromberg. Apparently no one did. After the Cult's incredible climatic set, nothing could top that.
Interesting note, The Midnight Special TV show had just got done filming some future shows before this concert. A giant net of balloons above the stage was leftover from these.
BÖC's pyrotechnic folks took full advantage of this by dropping hundreds of mostly half inflated balloons at the end of their set. It was quite the site to go with the fog machines and strobe lights.
It was an amazing concert by the Öyster Boys to say the least!
The final segment of the mini KISS/BOC tour resumes.
Running order: Rush, KISS, Blue Oyster Cult
My first show was in the fall of 74, BOC at Thomas Fieldhouse on the campus of Lock Haven State College in PA. It was, like, a $5 ticket (a whole week's worth of earnings from delivering newspapers!. Treaties was released earlier that year. The place was packed to the rafters, probably 2,200 rowdy kids. My friend Bill and I sat in those bleachers and rocked as only a couple of 16 year olds can.We didn't get to see many big name rock shows in Central PA.
When the guys played Harvester, I remember they had a Roland synthesizer that was having a problem with itself. I think it was Eric who banged on the side of it to get it working. A display of brute force against the technology of the era, brilliantly executed in full leathers. A few years later, Bill and I played in a R'n'R band that covered Death Valley Nights with a female lead singer.
My recollection of BOC's set is rather fuzzy, unfirtunately. It was a very busy night. Bearing this in mind, here is what I remember (no particular order):
The Red and the Black
Harvester of Eyes
Career of Evil
Hot Rails to Hell
ODd on Life Itself
The show was on a school night, my friend and I had an 11 pm curfew, and it was taking the crews forever to reset the stage between acts. BOC was headlining, natch, and we had to pack it in and head home at 10:45. Anything that happened past that time would have been relayed to us by a non-musician 3rd party. We were told that Cult's set wasnt much over 90 minutes.
And that's pretty much what happened that night, to the best of my knowledge and recollection. Sorry I couldnt be any more help than this...
I have found a review of this show from the September 17, 1974, issue of the Eagle Eye, the newspaper of Lock Haven University:
Trio of groups rocks audience
by Mike Shriver
After a summer's rest the walls of Thomas Field House were shaken to a rude awakening when, on Monday night, Fang Productions of Edwardsville, Pa. presented Rush, Kiss, and Blue Oyster Cult to the Lock Haven State campus. Starting off the school's first concert of the semester was Rush. The fast rock and roll group consisting of a guitarist, bass guitarist and drummer seemed to catch hold of the crowd's attention. With the drummer spinning his sticks high in the air with each song, the band played a number of tunes including "In the Nude" which is off one of their albums and "Bad Boy", an oldie by the Beatles.
To assure that the crowd was all set for the evening, following their first number the lead singer, dressed in a white suit, asked, "is everybody feelin' OK?" This brought a roar of approval from the eager concert goers. With a drum solo ending Rush's time, the group walked off stage only to be brought back for seconds "Fancy Dancer" was the encore number after which the band departed.
Next in line for the high strung evening was a group from New York called Kiss. "Professional" would suit this band's routine description. Stage left was occupied by a large lit "Kiss" sign along with drums mounted above the stage platform and 6 ft. Marshall amps with five red flashing lights. The opening number started off with a big bang, with an explosion on each side of the stage.
With Gene Simmons on bass guitar, Paul Stanley on rhythm guitar, Peter Criss on drums and Ace Frehley on lead guitar, the group put on a show long to be remembered. Decked in white make-up with star studded eyes and black leather dress, Kiss exhibited one of the most exotic performances ever viewed by the Lock Haven students. "You've Got Nothin to Lose", popular tune, thrilled the crowd along with Gene Simmons' stunning act of spitting fire from his mouth. Kiss rounded up their evening with a very dramatic "Black Sabath", after which they left the stage amid rounds of recalling applause. They appeared back on stage by request and finished up with some heavy rock and roll.
Last but not least was the well known group Blue Oyster Cult. "Stairway To The Stars" opened their performance accompanied by a brillant light show. Suspended high and behind the group were sets of theatrical lights of varying colors, that cast a colorful array on BOC. The group members include Donald Roeser, guitarist, who has been claimed one of the best by Rolling Stone and Crawdaddy; Eric (Jesse Python) Bloom, vocalist, considered the Rock King of the Finger Lakes; Allan Lanier on keyboards and rhythm guitar who seemed to hold things together; and two brothers, Joe and Albert (Prince Omega) Bouchard on bass guitar and drums.
Of all three groups that played, BOC seemed to be better recognized than Kiss or Rush. Their songs were familiar from their new albums as well as their old ones. Bringing the crowd back to life after a long wait, BOC carried the rest of the evening on to its finish.
Naturally they were brought back to do a double encore of "Hot Rail to Hell" and "Born to be Free". Thomas Field House rests again - But until when?
It's worth noting that this is the only documented occasion that BOC ever played "Born to be Free"... :-)
Here's a link to a larger version of that poster:
The final gig of the mini KISS/BOC tour.
Running order: Rush, KISS, Blue Oyster Cult
My first concert ever. Opener may have been Jo Jo Gunne. I don't recall as I was there for BOC. Sold out show. Pre-lasers. Was tight, solid rock and roll - the Secret Treaties LP was out then and I think they played the entire album.
The all guitar part of the show was fairly amazing haven't seen it since by any band.
74-09-19: La Crosse WI Setlist:
74-09-20: Kansas City MO Setlist:
They played "We Gotta Get out of This Place"...? I wonder what prompted that...? Does anyone know?
I just wanted to post a comment about BOC's 1974 gig at the Tennessee State Fair. I was there, and it was the first time that I had ever seen them...
The show was utterly fantastic and shaped me and my musical taste and style for the rest of my life.
The most amazing part of this experience is this... imagine yourself in Nashville TN in 1974... BOC opens for Lynyrd Skynyrd (who are riding a big wave about then). After BOC's set....most of the audience starts to get up and leave (I did... I mean who the hell could top BOC) after they did about 2 encores... and Skynyrd had to come out and OPEN with Free Bird just to keep the audience there.
I don't know about you, but that to me was just amazing...
74-09-21: Nashville TN Setlist:
I saw a T-Rex torrent for this gig on Dime but it looks like the original taper unfortunately didn't record BOC...
74-09-26: Tower Theatre, Philadelphia PA Setlist:
I found a review of this gig in the Sat 28 Sep 1974 edition of "The Philadelphia Inquirer":
Rock Show Blends Furious, Refined
by Mary M. Niepold
Rock and roll was busting out of Upper Darby Thursday night. Three bands strong, high decibel energy and flourishes of showmanship blasted through the Tower Theater as the Philadelphia band, Moxie, the British band, T- Rex, and the Long Island band, Blue Oyster Cult, cut loose enough power to keep even the youngest teenybopper in the audience writhing in his T-shirt.
Despite unnecessarily long lags between sets, the evening's music did build to a tumultuous climax with Blue Oyster Cult. And it was a welcome set of skilled musicianship after a mostly bland and monotonous output by T-Rex.
Blue Oyster consists of five musicians who can share instruments and blend vocals with nonstop power and a thoroughly synthesized sound. From one number to another, beginning with "Stairway to the Stars," technical expertise and musical explorations were established. Rhythm changes and key shifts slid from their instruments almost imperceptibly.
Lead guitarist Donald Roeser (known intimately as "Buck Dharma") was the high note of the evening. Elfin-sized and with eyes that rolled note for note, Roeser has to be one of the finest guitarists on the horizon. His skill is expansive enough to be compared to Larry Coryell or John McLaughlin. Runs on his guitar were never repetitive and traveled like bird-flights across the strings.
Blue Oyster's other four members are also tight, polished musicians, with Albert Bouchard on drums being equally diverse in releasing constantly changing textures. All together, Blue Oyster is rock and roll at its most furious and also most refined.
While Marc Bolan is a fine guitarist, T-Rex as a whole is neither very unique nor cohesive. Their final number, "Get It On/Bang a Gong," almost made up for the mire of the previous numbers, and Bolan's antics of playing the guitar with his knee and a whip were entertaining - just the kind of rock drama that the young set jumps for, and most everybody else wonders if it's really necessary.
The opening band, Moxie, however, is a good rock band, relying on antics to a degree - and making up for it with tight, hard-driving energy. Dennis Zampitella, in particular, pumps his organ with the fury of a Jerry Lee Lewis and together the five members of Moxie unleash an entertaining run of good old rock and roll.
I only know about this gig as a result of listings and ads in "The Knoxville News-Sentinel" - here's what it said in the Sunday 22 Sep 1974 edition:
Blue Oyster Cult Group To Play Here
The Blue Oyster Cult rock music group will perform in concert at Civic Coliseum Saturday night, Sept. 27.
Appearing with Blue Oyster Cult in the 8:15 p.m. performance will be Cactus and Black Sheep groups.
Tickets are now on sale at the Coliseum box office and are priced at $5 in advance and $6 the day of the show.
Radio station W149 is sponsoring the program.
Members of the Blue Oyster Cult are Donald Roeser, Buck Dharma, Eric Bloom, Allan Lanier, Albert and Joe Bouchard.
One of the group's most popular albums was the one in which they made their Columbia Records debut, "The Blue Oyster Cult".
So... both "Donald Roeser" and "Buck Dharma" are members of BOC...? Hmmm...
Also - although it says the gig is "Saturday night", 27 Sep was actually a Friday...
In the Friday 27 Sep 1974 edition, it said:
Blue Cult in Coliseum Show
Who: Blue Oyster Cult, Cactus and Black Sheep.
What: Rock music concert.
When: Tonight at 8:15.
Where: Civic Coliseum.
Tickets: $5 in advance, $6 at door.
Blacksburg, Virginia ... there's nothing there except Virginia Polytechnic University, commonly known as Virginia Tech, so I figured the 1974 show had to be there.
A quick glance at the 1975 VT yearbook, the Bugle, confirms BOC's performance there during the 1974-1975 academic year, which ran from the fall of 1974 to the spring of 1975.
Here's a link to the yearbook PDF:
Thanks Bert. I noticed on the BOC page entry of that yearbook that the text read "Billy Preston & Blue Oyster Cult" - this suggests the possibility that these two shared the same bill...(?)
74-09-28: Blacksburg VA Setlist:
Here's a listing from the Saturday 28 Sep 1974 issue of the "The Republic" [Columbus, Indiana]:
Lynyrd Skynyrd with Blue Oyster Cult and Hydra. Convention Center, 525 West Walnut, 7:30 p.m. Monday.
Also, on one of those "This day in history" sites, I saw the following:
This Day in Music: September 30th 1974
Police were called to a Lynyrd Skynyrd and Blue Oyster Cult concert after a fight broke out between two sound engineers. The Skynyrd roadie claimed that the sound had been deliberately turned off during the band's set.
Dealing with the events of Sept 30 1974... usually referred to as the day the Skynyd crew had a "big fight" with the BOC crew... if you are interested in actual facts, read on...
I was there, working for Hydra, the opening act... kind of caught between a rock and a hard place, cause I was good friends by that time with the BOC crew and had been friends with the Skynyrd boys for several years since back when they were opening shows for Hydra...
The actual problem came about because Skynyrd did NOT want to be second bill on this show to start with and did NOT want to use BOC's P.A. - they were idiots on that account cause BOC were at that time using Tychobrahe, which was state of the art and used by Purple, Stones, Tull in those days...
Skynyrd was using a company out of Memphis called Rock and Roll audio which was run by a really nice guy named Joe "Bullet" Osbourne (he survived the plane crash and I used to see him on stage crews around Dallas TX), but was basically a 5 yr old Heil system with a bunch of "maypop" Phase-Linear power amps... I mixed my band several times on both systems and the Tycho system was a quantum leap....
Back to Louisville... the Skynyrd boys were drunk on their ass and fighting amongst themselves and their manager as usual and just looking for something to fight about... the Tycho system was roadied by ONE guy named Jay Sloatman (AKA "Dunt"... he was Frank Zappa's brother in law... but I digress..)
During the latter part of the show (may have indeed been Freebird) RVZ began slinging the mike around on it's cord and being as drunk as he was eventually hit it against something and it then went intermittent... when Dunt went to the stage (from the front of house) to hook up another one, he was met at the top of the stairs by a Skynyrd roadie who tried to stop him from coming onstage and Dunt laid him out, then got jumped on by ALL the Skynyrd roadies while he was TRYING to get another mike going for Ronnie...
After handily whipping the asses of the entire Skynyrd road crew singlehandedly (Dunt was built like a fireplug, he's on the cover of Overnite Sensation if you need to see what he looked like), he turned off most of the power amps for the PA and went back to the front of house board...
Finishing the song and their set, the Skynyrds then wanted to whip everybody's ass in the building... their management whisked them into a limo, but made the mistake of not getting in with them... they merely circled the block and piled out of the limo right beside where I was loading my truck and RVZ grabs me and says "Come on in here with me... we might need a big 'un like you before this is over"...
I declined and kept loading my truck (not revealing to Ronnie that I was friends with the people he wanted to fight as well) but they went back inside and tried to pick a fight with anybody they could find and eventually ran out of steam and went off to their hotel... they did NOT fight any of the BOC crew, but mistakenly thought Dunt was part of the BOC crew....
So there's the real story...
And I can say that BOC NEVER sandbagged an opening act, unless it was one whose soundman showed a tendency to DAMAGE the gear... and BOC wasn't the one who turned Skynyrd down during this altercation... that was strictly the Tychobrahe PA operator who did that... and I didn't mention in my story that Skynyrd was already overtime and should have already been off the stage when all of this went down...
Here's another story for the same nickel...
A year before, I showed up for a Hydra/Skynyrd gig on New Years Eve 73 in ATL (Basement of the Georgian Terrace Ballroom) and all day long their roadies were telling me how RVZ was gonna "WHUP my ass" as soon as he got there because I had allegedly told a girlfriend of his in Charlotte that he was married to a black woman... he was married, but not to a black woman and I certainly told no one any such thing...
When Ronnie arrived, he yells at me to come on out the back door cause he wants to talk to me and I tell him I'm too busy (I was too), so he calls me a chickenshit and I grab his ass and take him out into the alley and told him I never told anybody anything and I'm awfully busy, but if he just really wants to fight, we need to get to it so I can finish my work...
Apparently by this time Ronnie has remembered that I'm almost twice his size and definitely twice as pissed off, so he throws his arm around me and decides we need a "drank of whiskey" and pulls out his flask... we have the drink and I get back to work...
I always thought Allen Collins was the real talent in that band and was certainly the nicest guy in the band... I worked on his amps even back before I worked for Hydra and he was one of the first people to not only request that I be the one to fix his stuff when he brought it to the shop, but he would even slip me a tip,cause he knew I always did him right....
Too bad the years were not kinder to the Skynyrd boys... I'd sure love to sit and have a drink with them all today and tell these old tales, but most of them never got the chance to grow old....
Just fillin in the blanks....
Ronnie never carried a flask. Matter of fact, he never carried anything. No ID, no nothing! Great story.
More to the story... The next day we had yet another gig with Lynyrd Skynyrd. Was it going to end up in an all-out-brawl?
No, I distinctly remember before the next showtime, Ronnie, Leon and Gary and maybe a few others came into our dressing room with their heads hanging low. They were nursing some serious hangovers. Rather than kick our asses, they apologized for things getting "out of hand".
Of course we loved those guys and we accepted the apology with no hard feelings. I think I remember that the sound system worked great that night and for the rest of the tour.
Ah, great road stories. Many thanks to eyewitness Sam Judd for passing this on and keeping it real.
Damn! I don't have any gig with Lynyrd Skynyrd listed for the next day (1st October)...
Anyone got any clue where it might have been?
According to setlist.fm, Skynyrd played these dates next:
01 October 1974: Unknown Venue, South Bend, IN, USA
02 October 1974: Unknown Venue, Springfield, MO, USA
03 October 1974: Pershing Center, Lincoln, NE, USA
04 October 1974: Unknown Venue, Denver, CO, USA
BOC only played South Bend a few weeks before, so it's not likely they played it again so soon...
That Skynyrd gig you list for the Oct/74 date in South Bend was also at the Morris Civic Auditorium - same place BOC and KISS played 8/4/74
And no - BOC didn't support Skynyrd that show; I would have definitely remembered that! It would have been odd, as someone pointed out since they just headlined that same venue on August 4th, '74.
OK, it looks like Joe may be mistaken about playing with Skynyrd the next night after Louisville - it might have been on one of those next few nights...
If you know, please let me know...
By the way, here's the text of a blog post which mentions this gig and which shows that Skynyrd did indeed headline:
September 30th, 1974
Lynyrd Skynyrd w/ Blue Oyster Cult & Hydra opening
Louisville Convention Center, Louisville, Kentucky
A wildly memorable evening, for a number of reasons, and a great show from all three outfits on the bill, this evening. Hydra was closer in approach to Lynyrd Skynyrd, and went over well with the Louisville crowd, which was notoriously impatient with many acts, in my experience. You had to get the crowd interested by the third number, or the catcalls and whistles [or worse], could begin, and cut things short.
If memory serves, it was during Hydra's set, that my buddies and I witnessed some extra-curriculur activities that included a pipe being passed around, and projectile vomiting - but this had nothing to do with the band's peformance. Instead, it was one of the funniest things I ever witnessed at a rock concert!
The band often played on bills in the region, at this point in time, such ast this show, opening for Sly & the Family Stone, the previous year [which I did not see, nor can confirm if it happened, or not]:
BOC was very, very loud, and their light show blinding, at times. These guys figured mightily in our shared record collection, at the time, with "Tyranny & Mutation" being listened to, frequently, and now, "Secret Treaties" had begun to strenghten their reputation, as well as a bit more local airplay. It would not be much longer, before they would be headlining shows, for a number of years, afterward...
Skynyrd's set was everything you could want, and a little "side-show" occurred, when, from our seats way at the back of the venue, you could see that someone near the stage was irritating Ronnie Van Zant - probably a drunken heckler - and over the course of a couple of songs, the situation was becoming a major distraction to the vocalist.
Midway through a song, it was clear that he had had enough, and Mr. Zant suddenly lifted the entire microphone stand, and in one fell-swoop, swung it sideways and brought the heavy metal bottom across the head (?!) of the offender, knocking him out of view, with a short blast of words aimed in the fellow's general direction. Suddenly, the immediate area took a couple of steps back to take in what had just happened, and without skipping a beat, as the band continued, Mr. Zant had a swig from his preferred libation, and went back to his vocal duties.
A couple of moments later, you could see a file of security people stream toward the stage through the standing room only audience, and to the area where the problem occurred. A couple of minutes or so later, the same file of people came strolling back, carrying the felled audience member by the arms and legs [presumably to be cared for by the medical staff, on hand at all shows]. Needless to say, there were no similar problems for the rest of the show.
This date seems to have a revolving door attached to the opening band slot. Three different bands have all been advertised as openers, and none of them actually did so.
First of all, I came across a clipping (date/newspaper unknown) for this gig which contained an ad saying Golden Earring were the support.
Then I came across another undated clipping which claimed the support was to be Rush. I can't say for sure which of these options came first, Golden Earring or Rush...? I'd need to see dated clippings to do that.
But I can be reasonably sure that the third band to take its turn on this bill was T-Rex. I've seen a number of ads to that effect, plus here's a listing from the 29 Sep 1974 issue of the "The Journal News" [White Plains NY]:
Blue Oyster Cult and special guest T-Rex, 8 p.m. Sat. Academy of Music, 14 St. and Third Ave. Tickets: $5.50 and 6.50.
However, later adverts featured "Triumverat" in their place, so clearly Golden Earring first cancelled, as did T-Rex, for reasons unknown...
I attended this show, travelling with a friend by bus from my hometown of Glens Falls, NY to New York City to see the band play at the Academy Of Music.
This show is rather infamous in my memory as I had a bit of a mishap during the intermission. Seemingly the entire crowd filed downstairs outside of the restrooms to ingest various substances.
We soon found ourselves passing the bowl of a fellow concertgoer around and around. I started to feel a bit funny and leaned against a nearby pole. Then the lights started to dim but it was not for the band. I couldn't see and I started telling my friend, "Ed, I can't see. I can't see!". I was told that next I slowly slid down along the pole until I was out stone cold on the floor. I recall still being able to hear everybody talking: "Some of that bad acid" etc.
Next thing, I awoke with a start as I was being carried up the stairs by 4 guys. They took me outside to get some fresh NYC air and i felt much better. When BOC came on, I was feeling great and enjoying myself greatly but my friend kept a nervous eye on me fearful of a recurrence.
T-Rex's participation as support for this gig must be in some doubt. Check out Cliff McLenehan's note below - it doesn't mention this gig.
It looks like Marc Bolan was having some personal problems at this time and a number of performances were cancelled whilst he got straightened out.
For some insight into these personal problems, check out the 13 Oct 1974 Golden Hall show below...
Thanks to Cliff McLenehan, author of "Marc Bolan 1947-1977 A Chronology" [www.helterskelterbooks.com] for confirmation of this gig...
Here are some corrections/additions for you. This is pretty much authorative as I had access to T. Rex tour manager Mickey Marmalade's tour itinerary.
Everything else was correct. I know that T. Rex and BOC shared the same US booking agent at the time. Of course, the name now escapes me. Hope I've been of some help,
Regarding the spelling of the "Warner Theatre" venue - I have a jpeg of this theatre and it is clearly spelled "Warnors", so that's why I've gone with that...
In 74, I would again see BOC, this time at the Long Beach Arena.The arena was sold out. T. Rex was scheduled to open for the boys. T. Rex (Marc Bolan) was either a "no show" or too fucked up to go on stage. They made the announcement that T. Rex would not be performing, the crowd was not pleased.
They sent some guy out on stage with an acoustic guitar, now the crowd was really not happy. He tried to play a few songs, but the crowd would have any of it. So he ended with a song that had a chorus that I remember to this day.
It went like this "so fucken what, I gotta get out of this rut, it's a pain in the butt, so fucken what."
And this is how it ended up:
guitar guy: So fucken what
the crowd: FUCK YOU!
guitar guy: I gotta get out of this rut
the crowd: FUCK YOU!
guitar guy: It's a pain in the butt
the crowd: FUCK YOU!
guitar guy: So fucken what
the crowd: FUCK YOU!
guitar guy: fuck you!
The crowd was now ready for some BOC and they came out and played their ass off. A number of the songs from that evening appear on the "On Your Feet Or On Your Knees"album, that's CD for you youngerfolks. Yes, the amazing Blue Oyster Cult.
I've never been able to find out who the guitar guy was, poor guy.
The Long Beach arena gig on Oct 12 '74 was the first time I had seen the Band. I was 15. My best friend Rusty and I had heard about them some months before. We thought the Band's name sounded really bizarre & cool, so we went to our local record shop to pick up a couple of their albums.
Rusty bought "Tyranny & Mutation"; I purchased their new album "Secret Treaties". We both instantly dug the band, the music and the imagery, so went about telling all our friends & schoolmates about them. We became responsible for turning on most of Orange County to the band that year!
T-Rex was supposed to play first, but for some unknown reason cancelled at the last minute. Rusty & I didn't care. We were there to see BOC! When the band came on, we were totally blown away! The set list is chronicled elsewhere, as I cannot remember the exact song order.(it's been 33 years!) Eric made mention that the show was being recorded, and the crowd went wild!
The Band was great. Standing about 6 feet from Buck, we witnessed some the best guitar playing we had ever seen. Some of that show made it onto the "On Your Feet Or On Your Knees" double live album. It was a privilege to be in the audience for that moment in BOC history! I have been a fan of the Group ever since, and have seen them many times throughout the decades. BOC On Tour Forever!
October 1974. Long Beach Arena. After listening to their first 3 albums over and over, I was ready for this.
As I stood in line outside the Arena, "The Symbol" suddenly lit up the entire wall of the Arena. Crowd went wild. Seen them over 50 times since. Is there anything better than the right frame of mind, a bean bag chair, headphones, and Secret Treaties' "Astronomy"? I didn't think so. BOC, the Light that never warms...
I went to that show with my then girlfriend (later wife...). It was awesome! The crowd was so pissed off when they heard T-Rex wasn't gonna make it. When the lonely guy came out on stage to play his solo song, I though the crowd was going to rush him and beat him to death with his guitar.
Buck was incredible. Someone else mentioned his white suit. When he played "Last Days of May" it was hypnotizing. Hmmmm... maybe the hits of acid had something to do with it... Nah... he really was awesome.
We all had a big bag of Colombian Red weed. I remember rolling a joint as they played the song "Flaming Telepaths". I was sitting and rolling and by the time they got deep into "the jokes on you" part of the song, there was nobody sitting down. They played it long and hard and it built in intensity until I not only lost the joint I was rolling, but most of our weed...
Didn't matter. And when they announced it was being recorded for a live album, that blew everyone away.
The "Five Guitar Boogie" was really wild. It's the picture they used on the inside of the album cover.
That show was recorded by KNAC in Long Beach. They used to play songs from that concert, like "Buck's Boogie" and "Last Days of May". I think it was filmed too. Somewhere, in a vault, is some of the best music ever played live. I'd give my left nut to get my hands on that recording!
I thought it was kinda bunk that they only put 3 of the songs from Long Beach on the live album. Although the 3 were great, "Flaming Telepaths" should have definitely been on there...
I've met and partied with many that were there that night, although we didn't know each other at the time. I doubt there was a single person there that night that left disappointed...
I think I saw somewhere that Marc Bolan had laryngitus and that was why T-Rex pulled out of this date, but then I saw the link given below for the San Diego Golden Hall show...
At 15 years old This was one of the best Live Rock Shows ever. The Long Beach Arena is and will always be the best place to see a Rock Band Live.
KNAC was in the F&M Bank Building then. KNAC is the place to be on your Radio. If you remember that you were there. I remember the Fuck song and The BOC LOGO outside on the Arena wall.
But most of all back then NO SEATS ON the floor. General seating. Sit where you please. Those days are gone FOREVER. As I remembered it not to many people cared that T-Rex was not there. I remember a cheer for them not showing.
Check out this link, featuring an interview with Marc Bolan which took place on November 9, 1974 backstage at Roberts Stadium in Evansville, Indiana (so that's maybe a month after this show):
In case the above link disappears or changes, here's the important bits. When asked if the American tour is going to revitalize T-Rex, Marc Bolan says: "Well, everywhere we've been we've sold out, and we've only done two gigs with other bands."
Hmmm... only two gigs, eh? He later added "we've played nothing less than 7,000, and we've been sold out everywhere... what happened was that everywhere we were advertised it sold out, which is really nice, really pleasant."
I suppose the corrollory must be that everywhere T-Rex weren't advertised, they didn't sell out... I think Marc Bolan must have been living in some Marc-centric dreamworld...
Then Bolan says the following: "In fact, we're all a bit sick, there's some flu thing, I don't know, have you got it here? I was a bit croaky tonight. The only gig we had to cancel was Los Angeles, and that was terrible because we were playing a thing with Blue Oyster Cult, and we were headlining. It was our show, and we sold 17,000 seats, and I had such a bad sore throat that I couldn't open my mouth, which was a real drag, 'cos it's such a good city, you know."
"We never thought we'd sell out, we thought we'd get about 12,000, which is enough people, and Zap, just like that [croaking sounds], you know [croaking] "Ah, the Light of Love"... Randy Newman's old man is a doctor... he came down and said, "Don't sing for six months," so we did after two days."
"So then what happened is that the night before we went to San Diego, and I had a bad sore throat then, I went and I really sang too hard, you know, and the show was great, but I came off [gasping sounds]... Have you seen "Day of the Dolphin"? Well, I sounded like the dolphin."
I don't know where to start with this load of old bollocks. For a start, I have to assume by Los Angeles, he means Long Beach which definitely wasn't a T-Rex "headline" show and which they didn't sell out. Also - San Diego was the day after, not the day before, and they cancelled that also.
Don't get me wrong - I like Marc Bolan - I grew up listening to a lot of his stuff, but going on the evidence of his interviews, I'm afraid he does seem to be a bit of a self-important tit...
Saturday 12 Oct 1974: you have the opener listed as "Jeffrey Commodore".
I'd bet money it's actually Jeffrey Comanor, whose LP from 1974 I have. Singer/songwriter guitarist who'd been in The Groop...
The gig evolved when i was playing at the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach. T-Rex was opening for BOC, and refused to go on without an opening act. Since i was on my way thru anyhow, I agreed to open the show on the way.
It was like 16000 downer freak morons. I knew it would be an awful audience for my stuff but what the hell. Just as i was supposed to go on, T-Rex cancelled. Now everyone was really upset.
The most fun i had that nite was kicking at people trying to get up on the stage while i was playing. It was so ridiculous BOC came backstage and asked me how the hell I could get up there. I said I was simply more hostile then the jerks in the audience.
Then I went on and had a fine time at the Bear, where I had much fun poking fun at the experience.
That's the story as I remember it... it was entertaining, over all, but I wouldn't have liked to have made a tour of it...
I was there too!! Yep T. Rex canceled at the last minute. Some guy came out on stage and announced T. Rex wasn't going to play ...
The crowd started booing and cussing. So then the guy pulled out a acoustic guitar and started making a song out of the crowds chants ....
He called it the 'fuck you' song lol ... the whole place sang along with him with vigor, it was hilarious.
After everyone had vented real good BOC came out and pretty much everyone forgot about T. Rex!
I hadn't seen the Long Beach Arena that full since The Grand Ol' Opry was in town... seriously! I saw Johnny Cash on the very same stage. The vibe from the crowd was intense! You could tell there were many, many hard-core BOC fans in attendance. I wish I could remember the opening soundtrack to these shows... as I somewhat dimly recall, it was quite majestic and doomy, and I could feel the bass in my chest.
The band was so hot! So cohesive, so spot on in their renditions of songs I already knew by heart, and those I would come to know intimately later on. Buck's white suit took on an ethereal quality as his guitar mastery sought to hypnotize. Eric, who was my major heartthrob back in the day, appeared tall, lean, and handsome in black, with a voice that could melt any girls heart... not to mention other anatomical areas of pleasure.
The renderings of Hot Rails to Hell and Dominance and Submission stand out in my memory as being captivating and haunting. Still being a silly girl who preferred studio recordings to live performances (I know! It's hard to admit to even now!) I remember being stunned at the quality of musicianship of all the band's members, and for the first time in my until-then-sheltered-life, I loved me some live rockin' and rollin'! BOC was the catalyst; I would forever more appreciate the fact that a tune could be different from the studio version, and be absolutely wonderful!
Cities on Flame! Oh! My! God!! I screamed along with that one until my little girl voice cracked! And Last Days of May... this tune became the ultimate road trip song for me and my pals... the sky was bright, the traffic light, now and then a truck... and we hadn't seen a cop around all day... we were into riding dirt bikes out in the Mojave desert, and when you hit town, there was this one lonely traffic light out in the middle of nowhere. We just knew that tune was meant for us, exclusively!
This was odd - June says she specifically recalls "Hot Rails to Hell and Dominance and Submission" from that night - yet neither of those are in the broadcast setlist...
More on this a little later...
Le Vent Souffle Ou Il Veut (The wind blows where it may) Part 2
I spent the following day engrossed in an H.P. Lovecraft story, "The Haunter of the Dark," which I had discovered on Yessenia's bookshelf. The Viscounts' "Harlem Nocturne" and "Night Train" were spinning on the console, over and over, as I had left the auto-changer open. My attention was captured completely by the story and the background music, and I did not even look at the clock until I had finish the final page.
One particular quote caused my mind to ponder: "Excessive imagination and neurotic unbalance on Blake's part, aggravated by knowledge of the evil bygone cult whose startling traces he had uncovered, form the dominant interpretation given those final frenzied jottings." (*)
I continued in a trace-like state, trying to decipher the entries that were a puzzlement at story's end, when I noticed the time.
Eek! It was getting late...The time was fast approaching for Blue Oyster Cult; it had completely crept up on me. I hurriedly put on my make-up, grabbed my purse, and ran out the door. I started my venture toward downtown Long Beach byway of Ocean Boulevard. After a fast-paced jaunt, I eventually put out my thumb, and almost instantaneously obtained a lift to Ocean and Pacific. The blue spray painted signs of the faithful BOC harbingers were periodically visible the entire way to the venue. Gee, this is getting real good, I thought to myself.
I exited the ride less than a block away from the arena. When I got near the parking lot of the venue, I reached behind my ear for the joint that I was carrying as a warm-up for the show. Not there shit! I must have lost it in the car or during my walk. I decided to retrace my steps, and less than 20 paces back, there it was, the white Bambu rolling paper kinda glowing on the dark sidewalk. Groovy, I thought, and lit it right up.
I was arriving a shade late with only a few stragglers ahead of me. When I purchased my ticket,the box office girl mentioned that T. Rex was not to be performing. I replied that it didn't matter, just as the couple in front of me had.I really loved T. Rex and thought that the night would be much better with them here. But there was nothing I could do. So I, like many others, handed the concierge my ticket and went inside to see the band that was here for those of us in attendance to rock out to: Blue Oyster Cult.
"Rock out to" was an understatement, as the music of BOC was akin to a religious testimony of what the power and strength of music could be.
I walked through the lobby and into the arena. Blue Oyster Cult had just been announced moments ago, and were now slamming out their set with an intensity I have rarely seen in live performances. The music was more than hypnotizing... It was magical, kinda dark in an exciting way.
The band blasted out "Stairway To The Stars." Now this was a cult worthy of being part of! They were nothing short of phenomenal, so much so that I felt as if my very soul was on an excursion throughout the heavens. I fired up another joint, content with myself for having a little smoke to toast such a fantastic sound. Each level of my pot-induced high took me on a magical ride from song to song. Everyone was on their feet even though this was festival seating, not a soul was seated.
There was no letup in the band's musical onslaught. A moment that really stood out was when two of the band members slid the necks of their guitars together, stringed side, creating a screeching intertwining of notes that sent the spaciest of cosmic reverberations throughout the arena. I kid you not when I say you could feel the glorious sound of the band's music vibrating your physical being, and on "Seven Screaming Diz-Busters" the sound penetrated right through my body.
"Cities on Flame" had the audience in a frenzy. Many of the concertgoers were shouting the lyrics so loudly it had an a delectably evil quality. "Hot Rails to Hell" (the devil is in the details) had such an air of reckless abandonment that I really believed that all in attendance would gladly have followed the band anywhere, even through the gates of hell itself!
When lead singer Eric Bloom announced that the recording tracks were rolling, and would be part of the band's next album, I swear the tumultuous roar of approval that went up nearly blew the roof off the arena.
After a sonic barrage of sound that converted all in attendance, the band's final number had a gigantic mirrored ball rotating high above the crowd. As if by a quirk of fate, this dazzling effect found me dead center underneath this spinning orb. It slowly lowered to about 50 feet above me,giving the impression of an interstellar encounter. What a jolt to my already high state of mind. Like Wow! This was way, way cool! (Very much a redemption from my misfortune in missing the band play at the NOLA concert.) With the reflecting light orbiting all around me, I felt like a demigod!
The band left the stage and not a person moved except to applaud, and applaud they did. Louder, and louder, chants went up until the band returned for an encore, and then another. "Born To Be Wild" was slammed out with all the energy, debauchery, and wickedness that it stands for, and in my mind it remains the finest rendition of the song I have ever heard!
I was stoned by the BOC sound well beyond my marijuana-induced high. I enthusiastically gave myself over to the effects that brought my rock-n-roll soul to this point in time, and rose up to new heights by an induction into the ranks of the intoxicating seduction of sound and mystery that is... Blue Oyster Cult!
* Tales Of The Cthulhu Mythos H.P. Lovecraft & Others, Arkham House, Published 1969, Sauk City, Wisconsin, Chapter; The Haunter Of The Dark, Page 199
"Le Vent Souffle Ou Il Veut" ("The wind blows where it may") Part 2 is an excerpt from "The Incredible Adventures of Mischa" by Michele Dawn Saint Thomas
So... another person saying they remember Hot Rails being played - she also said she remembered hearing 'Diz-busters" but admitted to being in an erm... let's describe it as an enhanced state of consciousness...
To be honest, I'm not sure that testimony would stand up in court, but check out this review of the gig from the 18 Oct 1974 issue of "El Paisano":
'Cult' Concert Shows Rock At Its Best
by Larry Trent, Staff Writer
"Blue Oyster Cult" has been a major group in the field of heavy metal music in recent years. The Saturday night concert at the Long Beach Arena was yet another example of rock at its best.
"T. Rex" was co-billed with "Cult" but didn't appear, Mark Bolan, member, was said to have laryngitis. A young folksinger took their place and was promptly booed off stage by the raudy rock-crazed crowd.
Finally to the delight of the audience Blue Oyster Cult came on stage. The flashy group presented their music in a hard, brash style that was a delight to see and hear.
"Dominance and Submission," "Stairway to the Stars" "Cover of Evil" among other favorites fully satisfied the audience. The concert was recorded that night for a "Live Album" due to be released in January.
With the absence of T. Rex the Cult agreed to play an extra long set, almost two hours, which made for a very enjoyable evening with the heavy sounds of "Blue Oyster Cult."
"Blue Oyster Cult" has proved that they are a contender for the Iron Crown of heavy metal music, but Black Sabbath still holds the lead.
Yep, I have to admit: "Cover of Evil" has always been one of my own favourites, as well... but I noticed that the reviewer also mentioned "Dominance and Submission" - again, not part of the KNAC broadcast... I'm beginning to think that I would really like to see an actual setlist for this gig...
But check out the following report that Bolle Gregmar once sent me - the source for the clipping wasn't labelled but is clearly from a West Coast-based fanzine (with the initials: D.D. - anyone know what it might be?):
Blue Oyster Cult - Live LP Due January
That's what Eric Bloom announced to the seething crowd at the Long Beach Arena, October 12. And that's the concert recorded for the album. The group ran through many of their older numbers not done on the last tour (see D.D.#4).
Starting off with "Stairway to the Stars", the band was in good technical form if somewhat cautious. They also ran through "Before the Kiss, A Redcap" (with Dharma on vocals), "Cities on Flame", "O.D.'d On Life Itself", "Hot Rails to Hell" and all of Secret Treaties, except for "Astronomy" & "Cagey Cretins" (too bad).
The band came back for a rousing encore to play much looser and more in tune with the feeling of get-it-down rock'n'roll which they had been advocating all night. Among the songs were "Teen Archer", "Last Days of May" (sung again by Dharma) and the Yardbirds' "I Ain't Got You" (which was so fine) as well as "Born to be Wild".
Their stage show is much improved with colourful and effective (but not overdone) lighting, as well as smoke bombs and lightning bolts. Buck Dharma seemed more at home than I've seen him before, and no wonder as his guitar playing reached higher and higher plateaus as the evening wore on.
The crowd had been primed for BOC by the last second cancellation of T. Rex and Jefferey Comonar as last minute replacement. A folksinger somehow didn't go over at all and had bottles and jeers thrown at him. I wonder why? T. Rex and promoters, eh? Mmmmm. Anyway, by the time we arrived (7:30) the place was already in a shambles. A restless, ugly crowd. A rock'n'roll crowd. Mean.
I think it's becoming pretty obvious now that this gig was much longer than the set which was broadcast by KNAC. Don't forget - it wasn't a live broadcast - it actually went out the following week on the 20th October...
Looking at the various reports of this gig and extracting the tracks mentioned which were not included in the broadcast, it's possible to start to arrive at a probable actual setlist played that night:
* Not included in KNAC broadcast
The order is - obviously - approximate only. What would really help would be an audience recording of the show so we could work out what post-performance shenanigans were perpetrated by the KNAC editors...
As usual if anyone can offer any help in sorting out this conundrum, please let me know.
Here's some text from an article on the San Diego Reader website, entitled "50 Historic Local Concerts 1956-2006" that sheds some light on what happened to T-Rex during these gigs with BOC...
10-13-74: T Rex and Blue Oyster Cult were scheduled to play Golden Hall. T Rex had just undergone personnel changes and singer Marc Bolan was in the midst of splitting with his wife and living in L.A. to avoid British taxes. T Rex's new album, Teenage Dream, hadn't done well in the U.S., and Bolan was struggling with health problems. (His weight gain caused tabloids to dub him England's Porky Pixie.)
After an October 2 show in New Jersey, Bolan (reportedly drinking heavily and using cocaine) became ill and the next few tour dates were cancelled, including San Diego. With Blue Oyster Cult still willing to play, Little Feat were added to the bill and the concert went on.
So - does anybody know - did Little Feat definitely play that night?
I was 15 at the time and to this day this show remains one of the most iconic memories of my youth and literally transformed me into a fan of heavy rock that is still with me today.
About 6 months before this show I was introduced to BOC by a friend who had a cousin who lived in New York. He had a copy of Secret Treaties and I can still remember the first time I heard it. I remember being completely mesmerized by the BOC logo and the album cover with the plane and dead dogs. There was a since of evil and illusion that just seemed to rattle my cage.
Each day I would return to my friends house and we would crank that record through his Pioneer amp and JBL speakers. That album became our soundtrack and we literally wore the vinyl off that record. So when we heard that BOC was coming to San Diego there was absolutely no way we were going to miss this show.
My friend had just got his drivers license. He picked me up and we drove to Mission Bay park where we drank some beers and smoked some reefer to get fired up for the show. Our seats were to the left of the stage about 5th row. There were empty seats next to us all the way to the end of the row (remember this as it's important to what I'm about to tell you).
I can remember them announcing that Styx would be playing a show in a few weeks as they played the song "Lady". After what seemed like a long wait someone walked on stage and announced that T.Rex would not be playing. He then went on to say that because of this, BOC would be playing an extra long set. My friend and I could not have been happier.
BOC hit the stage with "Stairway to the Stars" and didn't let up until their second encore which I believe was "Born to be Wild". I know this is going to sound far fetched but during "Bucks Boogie" we were smoking a joint when all of the sudden Eric was sitting right next to us and wanted a hit.
He had left the stage and took a couple of hits before returning at the end of the song. We were absolutely stunned by what had just happened and to this day we still talk about it when we get together.
The highlight of the show was "Flaming Telepaths" which led into "Astronomy". The "jokes on you" line seemed to go on forever and the energy and vibe of that moment is hard to describe.
After the show it was hilarious because we forgot which floor we had parked on and literally had to wait until every car was out of the 8-story circular parking structure before we could find our car. I guess that's why the call it "Dope".
PS: Little Feat did not play that night, only BOC.
Also, as with the Long Beach Arena show the night before, Eric Bloom announced that they were recording this show for a live album which would become "On Your Feet or On Your Knees".
Matter of fact when they announced BOC that night they said "On your feet or on your knees, here they are the amazing Blue Oyster Cult". Not sure if any of the tracks from the Golden Hall show made it on the record but I believe the liner notes from the double album mention San Diego.
By the way your website is amazing and can't believe all of the great information here.
To sum up my feelings on BOC I would have to say what made them unique and different was their creative blending of Science, illusion, magic and metal.
I'm really excited because in 2 days I get to see BOC at the San Diego County Fair [5 July 2010]. Can't wait!!!
I did notice that someone posted a rebuttal comment to the original San Diego Reader website post quoted above:
reveland82: Dec. 2, 2009 @ 2:20 p.m.
I just wanted to say that I was at that Blue Oyster Cult Concert that T Rex missed and it was UFO that played NOT Little Feat as written in this article ! I have been to many concerts over the years and although these were good , I would not consider them "The Best" That is all !
T-Rex was supposed to headline over BOC in San Diego in 1974 but cancelled. That led to the best concert I've ever seen: UFO on their first American tour opening for Blue Oyster Cult.
BOC played an extra long set and even pulled out their cover of "Soul Kitchen." We were at the very front of the stage and the way they worked Flaming Telepaths into Astronomy was the best thing I've ever heard. Bucks soloing was transcendent.
I have a little info regarding the 13 October 1974 show at Golden Hall in San Diego.
It was billed as BOC headlining and T Rex opening. I was 16 years old and this was to be my first time seeing BOC. I was really excited, particularly because a band I was in played The Red and The Black and I was hoping to hear them play it live.
I was interested in T Rex too partially because I liked them and because Bang a Gong had a special place in my Heart because of a particular incident with a very special girl.
When we arrived, I noticed lots of syringes in the bushes right outside of the entrance. As a young guy from the east county, this was noteworthy since we only dabbled in pot and pills.
The lights went down and a pretty heavy band started playing and it was certainly not T Rex. They all seemed to have lost their shirts somewhere or maybe they were just really broke. Anyway, UFO were great. I still remember Doctor Doctor and Rock Bottom.
After they finished, someone came out and told us that T Rex had cancelled and if anyone wanted to leave, they could get their money back. Lots of guys who were all glammed up got up and left. Tons of mascara and torn up tights. I was bummed to not see T Rex (never did get to see them, in fact), but hey, some better seats just opened up.
BOC was tremendous, incredibly powerful. I didn't know their catalog very well at that point, so I can't comment on specific songs beyond those expected or if they played a longer set.
That was the first time, and 46 years later I have no idea how many times I've seen them. I go to a lot of concerts and I'll bet I've seen BOC more times than all the other bands I've seen put together.
So again, T Rex did not play. Little Feat did not play. UFO opened for BOC.
The ONLY gig involved in the recording of "On your Feet" that I don't have a date for is the "Phoenix Show Palace"... it's mentioned on the back of the record, but nobody seems to know about that venue.
I know for a fact that BOC played in Phoenix, AZ on October 14, 1974. It is listed on this site: http://www2.cambridge.ma-usa.sugarmegs.org/billgrahm.txt
T-Rex and Golden Earring opened the show, seems to be a Bill Graham sponsored event. This also coincides geographically with the tour schedule listed on the BOC website. I'm also 99% sure the venue would be Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix, AZ. They were hosting many shows there in the mid 70's. As far as I know, there was never a place called the Show Palace in Phoenix.
I have run into people who say they saw BOC play at the Celebrity Theatre in the mid 70's... hope this sheds some light on the mysterious OYFOOYK reference to Phoenix, AZ.
Visit Mark's vegas4boc site...
As for the Show Palace venue, I can say for certain that it was not the Celebrity Theater (the Celeb has been called the Celeb since it opened in 1963).
I want to say, and I have nothing to base this on but my questionable memory, that the Show Palace was at 33rd Avenue and Indian School Road, later becoming a Graham Central Station, and then Graham's. I'll try to verify this and get back to you.
The stub above I found on eBay is both helpful and unhelpful. It does confirm the date supplied by Mark but the lack of a venue name is a bit of a pain.
However, it does give a partial address - "38th Ave and Indian School Road" - and this chimes with what Russ was saying about the address. I googled "Celebrity Theater" and it seems that is on Van Buren so it's doubtful that this was the venue for this show. Obviously it may have changed locations - like Graham Central Station - but Russ doesn't think so...
This Golden Earring fan site gives the following info for this date: "Phoenix Show Palace (Cow Palace?) - T-Rex and Golden Earring opened the show for Blue Oyster Cult - Source: ad Rolling Stone magazine USA October 10, 1974"...
It looks like "Rolling Stone" can't have printed a venue name in their ad as the Earring site only said "Phoenix Show Palace (Cow Palace?)"... and yet, where did the Earring site get the info they did have? It's all very odd...
If you have any old copies of "Rolling Stone" lying around, please check this out for me if you can...
Anyway, for now, it's back to the drawing board on this one... I'll switch the venue name back to the mysterious "Show Palace" that may or may not exist - as mentioned on the "On your Feet" LP cover...
As usual, if you know anything, please let me know...
This show took place at the Phoenix Show Palace on October 14, 1974. The line-up was Blue Oyster Cult, Golden Earring & T-Rex and there were two shows according to the ad I have from "The Phoenix New Times" newspaper. The ad says:
Barry Fey Presents: October 14: 2 shows Festival Seating at the new Phoenix Show Palace 35th Ave. & Indian School Road.
Tickets: $5.00 in advance $6.00 at door - Tickets now available at all Bill's Records and Audio locations.
Also, the book "Marc Bolan: 1947 - 1977 A Chronology" has the T-Rex show on October 14, 1974 with Blue Oyster Cult and Golden Earring at the Show Palace in Phoenix, AZ.
And finally, here is a link to the Billboard Magazine Golden Earring tour ad which lists the October 14, 1974 show as the Phoenix Show Palace:
Check out my tour archive sites for Mountain, Ten Years After, Humble Pie and Procol Harum as well as a few venues, like Capitol Theater Port Chester, NY, Aragon & Kinetic in Chicago, Boston Tea Party and Hampton Beach Casino:
OK, Greg - thanks for all that info. Looks like "Show Palace" it is, then!!
However, about the idea of there being two shows, adverts I've recently seen in The Arizona Republic (13 and 14 Oct 1974) only mention a single 8pm show...
With ZERO doubt BOC played at the Phoenix Show Palace 14 Oct 1974, triple bill of Golden Earring, T Rex and BOC.
Phoenix Show Palace was only open for about 6 months and it held concerts, live and closed circuit boxing matches and even lectures.
Newspaper ad for concert confirms date and venue (Arizona Republic 13 Oct 1974 Page 159) with a triple bill of Blue Oyster Cult. T. Rex and Golden Earring.
It also appears that the Phoenix Show Palace closed and disappeared as quickly as it appeared.
Advertisements for the venue list the address as "West Indian School Rd at 38th Ave Phoenix, AZ". The Phoenix Phone number for the venue was listed as "278-6583".
I only heard of this gig's existance when I noticed a mention on the mylespaul.com forum in a post from the bass-player of the opening band, the Morgan Blackwood Group. I contacted him to see if he had a date or any other info (my best guess would be Tuesday 15th, Wednesday 16th or Thursday 17th October, seeing as how Portland OR was on the 18th...
It was in the Fall of 1974, the gig was T-Rex and Blue Oyster Cult, not sure the exact date, but it was at the Armory - it's a huge armory by the way. A lot of times places like Medford, or where I grew up in Chico CA bands didn't have their concerts listed.
The name of our band was Morgan Blackwood Group, and our management was Superstar Attractions, manager Harry Arnold in Ashland Oregon.
I would imagine the concert was Oct 16th or 17th, I do believe it happened on a week day Medford is a medium sized city, probably wasn't thought of as important.
I remember a lot of big concerts in Medford that never show up on Concert Schedules when you look them up. We also did Fleetwood Mac Triumvirat concert there that also doesn't show up on the old Schedule but I do have a flyer and Back Stage Pass from that one for reference.
Ever since their first album came out I was dying to see BOC. A bunch of us headed up from Eugene - all U of O students - to see what live BOC was like. We were all blown away! The setlist was pretty much like OYFOOYK (different running order tho.) I do remember that they didn't play The red and Black - to our disapointment.
Also remember Marc Bolan from T Rex rising out of that star and endearing himself to the crowd: "So this is effing Portland Oregon!"
T Rex was the opener for this show. They threw out all these little tamborines, which kinda bugged me at the time as everyone knew BOC was recording for an upcoming live album. Listen for them during OYFOOYK.
I saw Blue Oyster Cult with T-Rex on 19 Oct 1974 at the Paramount NW in Seattle, a sellout event. This was the second time I saw BOC at the PNW that year. Trying to recall events after 30+ years is difficult. Both concerts seem to blend together now. This is how I remember it.
Many in the crowd were dressed up like glam rock stars. They looked like a cross between Gary Glitter and David Bowie, colorful clothing, platform shoes, dyed hair, makeup, glitter, etc.. T-Rex was the first to play that night. The only T-Rex song that I remember was "Bang A Gong (Get It On)". The up and coming BOC was the headliner. They played most of the tracks from their new "Secret Treaties" album, plus many from earlier work. The band now had three albums, enough stuff of their own for extended concert play. A young Buck Dharma had already developed the skills to become one of the best hard rock lead guitar players ever. Eric Bloom had a stand out performance with his stage theatrics and vocal skills on tracks such as "Dominance And Submission", "Flaming Telepaths" and "Career Of Evil".
The 4-5 deep line of people, waiting for the theater doors to open, wrapped around the side of the building and up the block. Waiting in line, I noticed many large cables coming out of the stage entrance and going into a semi trailer. I believe this was so BOC could record tracks for their next double live album "On Your Feet Or On Your Knees" (ca. Feb 1975). OYFOOYK album notes listed PNW as one of the venues where music was recorded.
I was there also!! It was my first concert ever... 15 years old. 33 years and I remember in a haze (it was the 70's after all). I went to see T. rex and remember that he started on his back on an illuminated lift that raised him to a vertical position with pyrotechnics, and had him outlined in a star with lights. He played Bang a Gong and most of the the songs from "The Slider".
What I remember about BOC is that they were loud! Remember this was my first concert. They were very theatrical. I wasn't really a fan before, but was after and still get nostalgic at "Don't Fear the Reaper". So cool I found the date for this show.
Saw a mention on a site that T-Rex were the headliners for this gig and BOC only opened. Does anybody know for definite?
According to the Oct 18, 1974, issue of the Seattle Times newspaper, BOC were, indeed, headliners for the next evening's concert.
74-10-19: P.N.W. Seattle, WA Setlist:
I found a review of this gig in the 25 Oct 1974 issue of the Spectator [Seattle University] in their "Messin's in Muzak" section:
Oyster rocks the Paramount by Mike De Felice
Paramount's rafters were riding the heavyrock sounds of Fred Schwartz, T-Rex and headliner Blue Oyster Cult last Saturday. This concert was taped for an upcoming BOC live album.
Opening the evening was Fred Schwartz, a local Northwest band. Schwartz, clad in a black cape and matching pants, was lead singer of the four-member group. Although his voice didn't have much to offer, his Mick Jagger stage struttin' imitations were entertaining. Fred Schwartz' lead guitarist offered several fine solos during the band's disappointingly short 30 minute set.
Following a long 45-minute intermission came the antics and visuals of T-Rex. Their session began with lead guitarist Marc Bolan being lifted off the floor by a brightly-lit star. Playing mostly cuts off their new Light of Love album, Bolan irritated the audience with his over amplified guitar. Equipment hassles further hampered music quality. Throughout the performance, ticket-holders were subjected to bothering vocal harmonies between Bolan and the band's female organist.
Nearing the end of their set T-Rex began throwing tambourines into the audience in preparation for the "Bang a Gong" finale.
The highly distorted hit single provided another opportunity for the group leader to play and sing unintelligibly. Working the crowd to a frenzy, "Bang a Gong" developed into a jam.
Marc laid his instrument onstage and turned the already loud amp higher. He then ran a tambourine over the guitar neck several times creating an atmosphere of paranoia. Not satisfied with the distortion level, Bolan got out a leather whip and beat the instrument.
Ending the madness. Marc threw the guitar into an amp which then exploded. T-Rex's hour and ten-minute session left the crowd murmuring.
It was after eleven when top biller Blue Oyster Cult stepped on stage. Numerous microphones were placed on stage and in the audience for the taping of the show. Guitarists Eric Bloom and Buck Dharma, wearing complete black and white satin suits, respectively, both played instruments matching their attire. Eric, the group's showman, keyboardist and lead singer, carried BOC through much of the material on "Secret Treaties," their latest release. Stealing the show was the modest Dharma. Wearing a thin mustache, the phenomenal guitar player consistently performed staggering solos.
"All is Good Tonight," an unreleased tune, was spotlighted with synthesizer work from Bloom and a unique rhythm/lead guitar combination. The use of multi strobe lights during "Flaming Telepath" provided excellent visuals. Lighting in Cult's performance was well coordinated with the music.
A pair of huge cross-hook symbols, BOC's trademark, were draped over the stage. Twice through the night, the stage filled with white smoke, nearly engulfing the entire group. "Buck's Boogie" and an early BOC tune "Cities on Flame with Rock an Roll" ended the concert. After several minutes of feverish hand-clapping the band reappeared, for the first of two encores, and performed "ME 262." The tune exemplified the group's image of Nazism; it was named after a German war airplane. "ME 262" had all five members boogiein' on guitars.
Ending the four hour and four minute triple bill, Blue Oyster Cult did a rendition of Steppenwolf's "Born to Be Wild."
In all, the evening presented some credited rock, with the exception of T-Rex. The showmanship in T-Rex fortunately created a tolerable set. While Blue Oyster and Schwartz's "stage show" complemented their musical ability.
Added Note: Next week Muzak interviews Tom Scott, chief technical engineer at the Record Plant. Tom directed the recording of Paramount's Blue Oyster Cult concert for an upcoming live album.
"All is Good Tonight," an unreleased tune...? Scratching my head on that one... especially since Bolle has kindly provided the setlist above... weird...
But that interview mentioned in the footnote above (from the 1 Nov 1974 issue of the Spectator) was of interest - here it is:
Music engineer enjoys job by Mike De Felice
Blue Oyster Cult recently played Seattle's Paramount Northwest. That concert was recorded for an upcoming BOC live album. Directing the taping of the Oct. 19 show was Tom Scott, chief technical director of the Record Plant in Sausalito. Following the BOC concert, Muzak talked with Scott about his unique job.
Blue Oyster Cult's Seattle concert was the sixth location in 10 days that the Record Plant had taped for their upcoming live LP.
"When you're on the road recording a live album you visit many different-sized concert halls," said Tom Scott. "For example, on this tour we have worked in locations from tiny auditoriums that hold only 2,000 to the huge Long Beach Arena to a converted supermarket in Phoenix."
As to the problems various size auditoriums create for taping, Scott explained that halls reverberate in different ways. "This poses problems as to where recording levels have to be set. Usually during the opening song each night the engineers are experimenting with different recording levels to find which level sounds best."
Preparation for the taping of Paramount's BOC concert involved some six to seven hours of setting up band and recording equipment. "We set up 26 microphones to the band and throughout the audience to record the show," Scott said.
Record Plant assigned four engineers to do the Blue Oyster Cult tour. "Two of the four engineers are on stage during the concert to handle any p.a. problems that may arise during a concert," said the director. "The others are stationed in a mobile unit just outside the concert hall."
A mobile unit is where the music is wired to and actually recorded. The particular taping machine used in the BOC tour was a 16-track mixer." This mixer allows for 16 separate recordings to be made," explained Kurt Kinzel, another Record Plant engineer. The taping of many tracks allows engineers to control the sound level of each instrument, so that one will not drown out another.
"The trick in engineering," said Kinzel, "is to make the 16 tracks sound like a band and not 16 separate tracks." Once a tape of concert is completed it is sent to the band's record company. Here officials listen to the recording and okay it. Next the tape is sent to a studio and mixed into stereo. Kinzel estimated that the BOC LP would be on the market by January.
Both Scott and Kinzel are experienced engineers. Among the musicians they have worked for are Sly Stone, Joe Walsh and the Rolling Stones. Kurt also helped on the Bangladesh project.
"Of all the bands we've worked with, the most enjoyable has to be the Allman Brothers," Scott said with a reminiscing smile. "We both worked on Greg Allman's new live LP. That was a gas."
Just prior to the Blue Oyster Cult tour, both engineers were working a music festival in Africa. Top groups at the festival were the Pointer Sisters, James Brown and the Crusaders. "The whole festival was recorded and filmed," they exclaimed. The film is expected to be out within two years.
It's obvious when one looks at these engineers' accomplishments that they are tops in their field. Both agree, though, that every time they work on another project they learn something new. Tom Scott and Kurt Kinzel are two of the many Unknowns that are vital to the music industry. Because they have such close contact with the creation of music, many consider engineers musicians in their own right.
Here's a review of this gig from the Wed 23 Oct 1974 edition of the "The Province" [Vancouver]:
Smoke hides T. Rex Fire
By Jeani Read
If it didn't irritate the hell out of me to go to a concert and miss the headline act altogether, I would probably be more sympathetic to the idea of supporting local talent by putting them on the bill with some big names. But all Holy Smoke out of Victoria, who , opened the T. Rex concert at the Coliseum Monday night, did for me was waste a solid hour of my life with some largely irrelevant adrenaline-jerk endless boogying and delay the show long enough for me to have to try reviewing Marc Bolan and his band by proxy. I was out the door chasing an almost dead deadline as the first notes from T. Rex fell off the stage.
Even for those who could stay for the duration, Holy Smoke's appearance made the evening an enervating experience in decibel overdose. Three full-length sets by three different full-volume bands isn't called getting your money's worth. It's called a surfeit of sound. A molten lead earplug to the promoters for this one.
Second-billed was Blue Oyster Cult, who provided a shattering set of their highly stylized, architecturally-designed heavy metal rock and roll. Blue Oyster Cult used to be a very artful band; now they wouldn't win any Nobel prizes for taste. But the glitter punk theatrics, which reside mainly in the person of their lead vocalist, are evidence of a certain amount of camp moxie if nothing else.
And T. Rex? Well, all I can tell you is that Marc Bolan did indeed appear, raised up on a giant lightbulb star, and launched into a pretty inauspicious version of Jeepster while looking a lot more than a dilapidated version of the Phosphorescent Leech than was absolutely necessary. Beyond that, all I can say is what my spies told me. That this time around North American turnstiles, his band is better than it was the last time, which doesn't mean much since he didn't get to Vancouver the last time.
And that he sings Bang a Gong for 22 closing minutes. But then that's all hearsay. I wasn't there. Did you stay around?
"Camp moxie", eh...?
I saw this gig with T. Rex, at the Coliseum. Yeah, Holy Smoke was the opener.
BOC played a shorter set. Marc Bolan was boring and I left about five songs into that.
I was at that concert. I kind of remember that Holy Smoke were pretty good, BOC were always great live, and T. Rex was average.
T. Rex was and is my 2nd favourite band, next to The Beatles, I remember the problem with their set was that the keyboards and singer Gloria Jones were way too loud as they out drowned Marc Bolan.
I suppose that since Marc was doing Gloria, he wanted to showcase her.
Also, this was Marc's fat period and he was not his best.
Here's the review for this gig that appeared in the 24 Oct 1974 edition of the "The Albertan":
Old-fashioned rock works for Blue Oyster Cult
By Paul Hepher
It happened at long last - somebody finally brought good, old-fashioned oud music to the Corral and it worked.
Oddly enough, it was not the "name group" at Wednesday night's T-Rex and Blue Oyster Cult concert which provided the quality rock music.
T-Rex was even worse than their records. My main complaint with their records is that they are a lot like old Audie Murphy flicks - if you've seen one then you've seen them all.
Their live performance reinforced that feeling. Not only were they bland, but they played at such a volume that they completely overtaxed their amplification system. Their sound was so distorted and garbled that they sounded just like any other five or six guys hacking around with a fortune in equipment.
Not that the Corral has anything but the worst in acoustics. But the funny thing was, Blue Oyster Cult, using the PA system, managed to put out the sharpest, clearest sound I have ever heard in the Corral. Those who set up the equipment and controlled the sound system did their jobs to perfection.
It was pleasure to be actually able to hear what each member of the group was playing. The sound was balanced, there was none of the feedback that seems to plaque everyone who plays at the Corral and still it was loud - real loud, just the way confirmed rock and roll freaks like to hear it.
Blue Oyster Cult play tough, high volume rock and roll of the sort that was coming out at the end of the sixties. You have to like loud and raunchy music to enjoy them at all, but if that is the sort of music you prefer then you can't help but like Blue Oyster Cult.
They are a very electric band and are not for the weak of heart.
They used visual effects in a very effective and polished manner. Using spotlights and a bank of lights placed above and behind the band, they put on a visual show that complemented the music, and, at times, added much of the total effect of the whole show. Basic things, like spotlighting the man who was playing his solo, were done with much greater efficiency than in many past concerts.
Light shows and other visual effects are now stock in trade with name rock bands but it was still good to see something handled in a competent manner for a change.
Appropriately enough, Blue Oyster Cult chose to play Steppenwolf's Born to be Wild for their encore song. It was a song that suited their talents and summed up their music.
They did the song justice. They added a few new wrinkles but still it was the same song and the same sound. It was just a matter of doing things right and letting the crowd do the rest.
The crowd, and there were well over 7,000 of them, seemed to be pleasantly surprised with Blue Oyster Cult. They liked the music and they let the band know.
T-Rex, who are reputed to rank among the top of England's pop music heroes, got what they deserved, too.
What they they deserved was polite applause and a few cheers from those who were either too close to unconsciousness or too young to realize that the flashy group from England was just that - a flashy group with little substance.
They were completely upstaged by the warmup band and it is certain that the concert would have been much more successful if they had been the warmup band and Blue Oyster Cult had played last.
But, that's the way it goes.
Blue Oyster Cult are not that well known in this area, though they have put out several records. They will be much more well known after Wednesday's concert and deservedly so.
They stole the show and they did it by being just that much better.
But here's the review from the 24 Oct 1974 edition of the "Calgary Herald" from a "reporter" who'd clearly got out of the wrong side of the bed that morning:
T Rex was pretty awful, Blue Oyster Cult worse
By Eugene Chadbourne
Herald Staff Writer
T Rex fans were nervous at half-time Wednesday night at the rock concert in the Stampede Corral. Like, they weren't just a little bit nervous; they were real nervous. They were sweating. They had their fingers crossed. Their hero was in trouble.
Their hero is Marc Bolan, a short little frizzy-haired guitar player and singer (fans call him adorable) who is the leader and founder of T Rex, a group rumored to have been the hottest band in England for a couple of months two years ago.
So how was Bolan going to follow that absolutely brilliant, artistically sensational, astonishing, vividly symbolic performance by the other band on the bill, Blue Oyster Cult?
What could Bolan possibly do? Blue Oyster Cult ended their set with the stage completely submerged in smoke bombs, the three electric guitarists playing three notes in unison while slowly leaning back into the smoke until they, too, were completely covered up - like they'd been swallowed by hell or something. Like the end of Don Giovanni or something. Incredible.
And that wasn't all Blue Oyster Cult did, either. Talk about virtuosity. The drummer, wearing great shiny hot pants, left his drum set before the smoke bombs went off and picked up an electric guitar, and it turned out he could play those three notes, too. So for a few minutes there were four electric guitars up there on the stage. So all in all, in terms of pure, old fashioned spectacle, this topped The Robe and King of Kings.
The packed Corral crowd went wild, slowly rising to its feet cheering as the smoke billowed and the spotlights played air-raid and flashed back and forth across the hall.
Intermission. Then the lights went off and the T Rex fans were, simply tense as the emcee shouted for Calgary to welcome England's number one group, T REX! And the lights went back on and there was Bolan, crucified on a big neon star mounted on a platform rising from the stage. Whew! He was going to do it! He was going to out-flash Blue Oyster Cult.
Yeah, sure, but once Bolan jumped off the star platform and started playing his guitar everything pooped out. He had basically mediocre musicians like a conga player and an organist trying to follow him, but they all ended up out of tune and bumping into each other because Bolan wasn't going anywhere, he was standing still. It sounded like a guy who used to know how to play guitar and forgot, and is now working from the last lingering memories.
There was this back-up singer hidden behind a speaker column that was great, though. She had a strong, powerful voice, and she was really in tune. When she joined in on the choruses it made the slick little melodies Bolan writes come to life.
I left right after Bolan introduced a song called Teenage Queen. When nobody in the crowd acknowledged the tune, he shouted "What's the matter with you? That's only the number one song in England!" There was this steady stream of people leaving and I followed them.
But hang on there. Just because Blue Oyster Cult stole the show from T Rex doesn't mean it's any good, either.
In fact, Blue Oyster Cult is terrible. I couldn't figure out who the group reminded me of until it burst into Steppenwolf's Born to be Wild as an encore. That's right Steppenwolf. The same old combination of ugly, gross rhythms and easy-to-whistle melodies. Sure.
Yet the band's press kit suggest that it is much more significant than Steppenwolf ever was. It says all Blue Oyster Cult's songs are about violence and death, I was trying to follow lyrics but the only really clear line was this chorus where the lead singer kept pointing at the audience and screaming "The joke's on you!"
Those who gave the band cheers because they thought the show was flashy and professional just because of all the smoke bombs and the way the stage lights were synchronized to change color with the chord changes (they got that from Lawrence Welk) weren't really watching. The true sign of flash is whether the drummer can toss drum sticks in the air, let them flip, and then catch them. Blue Oyster Cult's drummer tried and missed the catch something like six times.
Final question. At a hard rock show, why was that folk-singer Oliver who has a good voice but couldn't hear his guitar put on as opening act?
What a plank...
But what's this about there being an opening act: "that folk-singer Oliver"... who's that - does anybody know?
By the way, the Calgary Herald printed a rebuttal letter regarding the above "review" from a fan in it's 30 Oct 1974 edition:
A puzzling critic
Editor, The Herald:
When I open The Herald the day after a major rock concert, I never cease to wonder at the trash Eugene Chadbourne writes.
The most recent case concerns the Blue Oyster Cult/T. Rex concert of Oct 23. A writer's purpose is to analyse and/or review entertainment.
Why is it then that 99 per cent of concert bands are, according to Chadbourne, too loud, too distorted, too electrical, too gimmicky or just plain lousy?
In fact, why does he bother to attend?
The Corral is not renowned for good acoustics, but that fact is always overlooked when judging a group's performance.
Mr. Chadbourne must go and expect to hear music as if it were coming from a $2,000 stereo.
J. PENNY, Calgary.
In 1974 I attended a concert in Calgary, Canada with Blue Oyster Cult and T Rex. It was only the second concert that I bought tickets for and brought my camera. Three years later I was photographing music groups for a local rock magazine called Music Express.
Truthfully I thought at the time that Blue Oyster Cult should have been the headliner not the warm up band. I still remember the end of your concert when most of the band came out and started playing guitars.
T Rex was good but he ran into trouble playing Bang A Gong. He improvised the song so much that people didn't recognize it. Half way into the song he stopped and yelled through the mike "What's the matter don't you know what I am playing"?
This is the only time I have been to a concert where the artist blamed the audience for not recognizing their signature song after they improvised it so much that it was unrecognizable.
I am now building a website of all the groups I photographed (1974-1977) and wanted to put up the shots of Blue Oyster Cult and T Rex but I could not find the correct concert date. I was very happy to come upon your site that listed the dates of all your concerts. It was there that I found the correct date of Oct 23, 1974.
I have already put up the shots of T Rex. Give me a few more weeks and I will add what I have of Blue Oyster Cult. Please don't be too disappointed at the quality as it was only my second concert for taking pictures. Your shots will be some of the few that are in color because I was not working for a magazine that wanted everything in black and white:
My first concert - B.O.C. backing up T.Rex, I was 14 years old at the time and can remember that B.O.C. came out and put on an AMAZING show - strobe lights, flashpots, dry ice, blacklights might seem old hat now but bear in mind this was my first concert so It was pretty intense.
Not to slag T.Rex but the Blue Oysters sorta blew them off the stage - I remember seeing some dudes throwing bottles at Marc Bolan - not very cool but that's how bad they wanted a second encore.
I saw this show at the tender age of 12 years old! My friend and I must have been the youngest people in the place - it was my second-ever rock concert -- I had seen a Queen concert a few months previous.
I didn't even know who T-Rex was at the time, and I don't really remember their show. We were there to see BOC and I can remember being blown away. It definitely was a formative event from my youth.
Since I was not yet smoking pot or doing any other drugs at concerts, I was later able to remember a lot of what I witnessed that night -- lots of smoke, strange smells, denim everywhere, long hair, and everyone taller than me.
Most of all, an awesome performance from the band!
Went to this show, I was actually there for T Rex and it was my first exposure to BOC.
BOC opened and really got the place going, the crowd was really into it and then T Rex came on. It was like letting the air out of a balloon.
To be honest, T Rex sucked but BOC was well worth the price of admission.
I was at this concert -- On your feet or on your knees for Blue! [Flash bang pyro!] Oyster! [Flash bang pyro!] Cult! [Flash bang pyro!]. Awesome concert. BOC was great.
My 16th birthday, first LSD trip. Yes BOC backed up T-Rex. And yes, as the other fellow reported, bottles were thrown at Marc Bolan. He was an hour late in a sweltering venue, was too wasted to play.
And there was an opening act -- Ronnie Montrose? Mahogany Rush? I remember seeing them both as an opening act for a triple bill.
Not the only time bottles tossed in that venue -- the first concert I ever saw, another triple bill with Queen as opening act, Status Quo, and the headliner "The New Savoy Brown" -- the "new" a clue that had been highjacked by a management coup.
The crowd loved SQ and Queen -- but were rude to NSB. I've seen it written in other places that Queen never played Canada until Sheer Heart Attack -- but I definitely saw them in E-town supporting Queen II.
OK - that's two mentions of a Queen gig taking place in Edmonton, Alberta sometime in early to mid 1974. This gig is currently unlisted on the Queen gig lists, so if anyone has a stub or handbill - or even just simply knows the date - why not pop over to queenconcerts.com and give them the details...
My sister heard that T-Rex was coming to Edmonton, so she got some tickets and away we went, thanks Barb. I was 16 at the time. We were a little late so we missed the first band.
Finally BOC came on stage with a glory of lazers, lights, fog, and flashes, It was freaking amazing and LOUD. The whole place was rocking. I'll never forget "Career of Evil" and "Harvester of Eyes".
Can't remember what song, but I remember 5 people playing guitar in a line and one fellow was in a yellow tux. I was amazed to no end.
The next day I went and bought the secret treaties album :)
Finally T-rex was coming on stage. He was 1/2 an hour late and the crowd was getting angry, it spooked me as I was only 16. He rose out of the ground and they started playing and I remember asking my sister what song this was and she said, I think it's Telagram Sam. well I was shocked, it was that song?, really? oh my gosh someone was out of tune. It was apparent Marc was so drunk he was off key and falling all over. After the next song which we didn't recognize, to my dismay we got up and left.
To this day that lazer show and flashes will always be burned into my head.
Thank you BOC.
I found this blurb in the October 20, 1974, issue of the Quad-City Times out of Davenport, Iowa:
Students will sponsor a concert featuring the Blue Oyster Cult at 8 p.m. Oct. 26 in the Davenport Masonic Temple.
The Daily Iowan was advertising BOC in big box ads as playing this gig as late as the 24th October:
Blue Oyster Cult
Saturday October 26th 8:00 p.m.
Masonic Temple Davenport, Iowa
Vixen also appearing
Tickets available at Epstein's - $5 advance - $6 door
But BOC clearly were playing Winnipeg with T-Rex on this date (see next entry), so we know they must have cancelled.
According to Joel Kolsrud, the gig went on with a replacement.
There was a show listed on Songkick (and setlistFm) for Davenport from October 12, 1974 that said "Ted Nugent and Vixen".
Well, I found the show. It was October 26, 1974 and was actually The Amboy Dukes (Nugent's band before going solo) and Vixen at the Masonic.
BOC didn't play.
Those were the druggy years, you're asking alot of my faded memories!
I don't remember whether BOC headlined or not, they may have been the warmup, I have a vague memory of walking out before T-Rex was finished, which would suggest they in fact headlined.
I really doubt that Holy Smoke appeared, third acts were usually local bands, so HS wouldn't have travelled cross-country with BOC/T-Rex.
I have no degree of certainty about the 26th date, although I do remember perusing the BOC official site a few years ago and somehow extrapolating that date from the geography/travel possibilities. If the bands went west to east, Edmonton Alberta, Calgary Alberta, and Regina or Saskatoon in Saskatchewan would have been likely dates as well. The U of Manitoba show was in the gymnasium, with probably 1500 attending. Edmonton and Calgary were both about the same size as WPG, about 500,000 population.
I attended this concert in the University of Manitoba East Gym. T-Rex headlined, although I remember there being some controversy about who would play first.
A local band, Steel was added as an opening act. BOC was the crowd favorite, many people left before T-Rex finshed. Can't remember the set list, although Cities on Flame stood out.
Here's a review of this show from the October 28, 1974, issue of the Winnipeg Free Press: (searchable text from the paper is at the bottom of the page)
A capacity crowd was on hand in the University of Manitoba's steamroom (more commonly referred to as the East Gymnasium) Saturday evening for what turned out to be an example of misbilling.
Blue Oyster Cult, a group which should have been the headliner was forced into serving as the warm-up act for an incredibly inept Marc Bolan and T. Rex and not too surprisingly, the Cult literally blew T. Rex back to its native England.
Opening with a devastating version of "Stairway To The Stars" and continuing through group standards like "O.D.'d On Life Itself", "Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll" and "Harvester of Eyes", B.O.C. rocked and boogied its way through an overwhelmingly intense 75-minute set, capped off by a hard-driving version of Steppenwolf's classic, "Born To Be Wild".
Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser proved once and for all that he's one of the best hot licks guitarists going, tossing out a succession of blistering, well-constructed solos. The group's dynamic finale, which features all five group members meeting centre-stage armed with guitars, is always an exciting visual spectacle, and one which was enhanced by some superb special effects and the Electric Factory's excellent lighting set-up.
If nothing else, it showed off the guitar as the ultimate rock and roll weapon in a deafening display of guitar blitzkrieg. If Oyster was loud, then T. Rex was blaring - it's too bad Marc Bolan seems to have fallen prey to the theory that cranking up the volume helps coyer up mistakes, because he and his backing group certainly made enough of them.
It became painfully obvious with the first few numbers that his show consists of nothing nore than lowest common denominator boogie complete with boring guitar riffing and the expected brash bam accompaniment from the remaining group members. Unfortunately the crowd ate it up, jumping to their feet to applaud Bolan's every move.
As far as this observer is concerned, T. Rex appears to be heading for extinction even faster than its namesake. If Saturday's show was any indication of what the group has to offer, then the sooner the better.
I only know of the existance of this gig thanks to Larry Slaven, who came across a review of the show in the Des Moines Register whilst researching the cancelled 8 Sept Fairgrounds "non-gig" with BOC and The Band.
Here's the text of that review:
R.E.O. Tops Loud Battle Of 3 Bands
A crowd of 8,300 fans came to Veterans Memorial Auditorium here Monday night to see R.E.O. Speedwagon, Blue Oyster Cult and the Holland-based Focus in a Rock 'n' Roll concert billed as the "Battle of the Bands Til Death".
It was loud. The sound system, modestly rated at 3,000 watts, was loud enough to be heard from across the street - way across the street. But it was enjoyable.
R.E.O. played last, but the Epic recording artists from Champaign, Ill., showed the others how it's supposed to be done with a smooth driving boogie that wouldn't leave your body alone.
Starting off with "Son Of a Poor Man," Gary Richrath's guitar glided and stung while bassist Greg Philbin and drummer Alan Gratzer rolled along as smoothly as the semi-truck that is the group's namesake.
Neal Doughty's yelping synthesizer was a highlight of the crisp "Down By the Dam" and the crowd let him know it.
The other groups weren't that bad, either. Focus has been together for five years, according to multi-keyboardist Thijs Van Leer and their tightly woven 45-minute set showed it.
Both Van Leer and guitarist Jan Akkerman are classically schooled and their music synthesizes classical elements with rock.
The "Hamburger Concerto" borrowed passages from "Haydn's Variations" by Brahms and mixed them with rock-style rhythm segments for an effective (and infectious) mood.
Blue Oyster Cult was supposed to have played in Des Moines with The Band last month but allegedly The Band wouldn't (and didn't) do a concert with the "Cult."
Sounding much like a tired Deep Purple, the New York City-based group only hinted at What R.E.O. Speedwagon drove home with a flair.
(The "Cult" has sold about 600,000 albums in the last two years, though, so somebody out there is listening.)
According to concert promoter Bruce Kapp, the "battle" grossed $35,000. Kapp said he plans to bring the "Doobie Bros." to Des Moines Nov. 22, and "Wishbone Ash," "J. Geils Band" and "Mountain" on Dec. 27.
"Des Moines Register", Tuesday 29 October 1974
I've made a couple of assumptions... the review refers to "Monday night" - as the newspaper was dated Tuesday 29th Oct, I've assumed the gig was Monday 28th October. I'd much have preferred it to say "Last night's concert" or words to that effect. On the face of it, if the text of the article had been written on say the Sunday, then "last Monday" would refer to the previous Monday (21st October).
However, as BOC were in Vancouver on the 21st (and Phoenix the Monday before that, on the 14th), my conclusion is that "Monday" must refer to the 28th October.
The second assumption is the running order - the review states that REO headlined, but it's a bit unclear on who opened, so I've taken the order given in the opening sentence to be a reverse indication of the running order on the night - and put BOC in the middle.
If anybody knows different, please get in touch.
A friend and I saw BOC-REO-Focus in the Fall of 1973. We were on a college visitation from high school and visited Drake University in Des Moines
The show was in Des Moines, IOWA, at Veterans Auditorium and was billed by (Des Moines KIOA-AM radio) as the "Battle of the World" I guess since the Dutch band Focus was on the bill.
Focus played first and were riding their fading hit "Hocus Pocus". REO Speedwagon played second and had their current hit out "Riding the Storm Out"
Blue Oyster Cult was the headliner and to be quite frank, we didn't know much about them. We were there to hear REO.
This was our first experience with fog+ lasers and over the-top-lighting. We were impressed by the whole ordeal.
I know it was Fall and I only received my drivers license in late May and this was during high school as we were allowed a couple days to visit universities without being absent. Lacrosse Wisconsin is probably 5 hours from Des Moines.
The only other options would have been the day after the 14 Dec 1973 Chicago show or between Tempe [18 Nov 1973] and Carbondale [04 Dec 1973].
We graduated from Spirit Lake High School the following Fall and went off to college where we tried and catch as many live shows as we could.
This was the second show we'd ever witnessed, with Mason Proffit as our first where my mom actually drove us to the ballroom on Arnold's Park, IA.
Crazy site you have and thoroughly enjoyed the testimonies with folks trying as hard as they could to remember those special times 30+ years in the rearview mirror.
Well, despite Steve's claim that the gig he saw was definitely 1973, I do have to place a large degree of faith in the 29 October 1974 review of the show which suggests the show took place the day before - 28 October 1974.
I remember this show well and my recollection of this show is different than Steve Klein's.
This was the first time I saw BOC and I wasn't familiar with them at all. Focus opened the show and were great. Jan Akkerman was a monster guitar player.
BOC played second not last and just destroyed the place, beyond amazing and blew my young 13 year old mind.
REO followed and although they were really great as well I felt sorry for them having to follow the BOC onslaught that preceded them.
There weren't laser lights used by BOC. They had three mirror balls hung above them. One large in the middle and two smaller on the sides creating a triangular shape. They'd put the spotlights on them at certain times shooting light beams throughout the auditorium. I can see where people nowadays thinking back on it might think they were lasers.
I've been a life long BOC fan since this show and always see them whenever they're in the area.
P.S. The guy who did the review for the Des Moines Register is a jazz bass player so I understand why he didn't quite get BOC.
Stop Press: Thanks to an advert kindly sent to me by Bart van Alphen, I now know for sure that BOC indeed played this venue on 28 October 1974.
I remember Focus and met Jan Akkerman the guitarist. Nice guy. The DesMoines police were very nice too.
Keep this on the down-low: They had confiscated some funny cigarettes from the crowd and gave them to the band.
That was 1974! I hope the statute of limitations ran out on such mischief.
The Dec 29, 1974, issue of the Omaha World-Herald newspaper mentions a previous concert at the Pershing Auditorium in Lincoln, Nebraska, with Lightnin' Lyle (opener), Blue Oyster Cult (warm-up) and REO Speedwagon (headliner).
Since this was an feature on Lyle, and not a concert review, per se, I figured the show in question may or may not have been in December. Sure enough, the Nov 04, 1974, issue of the World-Herald states that the tour with the three artists had wrapped up before that date.
Armed with these two bits of info, I was able to find the Oct 27, 1974, issue of the Lincoln Star newspaper, which listed an upcoming performance by REO Speedwagon at the Pershing on Oct 31, 1974, The Oct 31 date is confirmed at the Pershing Auditorium historical link here:
So, given the relative wealth of info on this one, I think we can safely say that Lightnin' Lyle (opener), Blue Oyster Cult (warm-up), and REO Speedwagon (headliner) played the Pershing Auditorium in Lincoln, NE, on Oct 31, 1974.
Special thanks to Lynn Sullivan at the Omaha Public Library for her help on this one.
Went to this show... my first boc concert... halloween show - everyone dressed up. I saw one couple dressed as bags of pot... awesome show. Reo was good too...
This gig saw the start of the BOC/Aerosmith feud...
My friends and myself are psyched up all day, we're going to our first Blue Oyster Cult concert.
The lineup for the show is Hydra, BOC and Aerosmith so we know its gonna be along night and we have an hour drive from Pittsfield down to Springfield. We had all of our goodies ready and some Old Grand Dad to smuggle in and mix with our cokes.
Hydra opened up and was good but we had never heard of them, I think they were from Georgia.
Next is BOC and were all pretty buzzed at this point, finally the lights go down and the announcement is made " On your feet or on your knees, here they are from new york city, the amazing Blue Oyster Cult" . Well off went the flash pots and out comes BOC playing stairway to the stars, the whole band was rocking out the civic center with a vengeance.
Next was OD'd on life followed by Career of Evil. We just keep looking at each other, what a show, next was Harvester of Eyes followed by Cities on flame then Flaming telepaths.
Next it was Buck's boogie and then ME-262, we're singing along and having a great time. The regular set ended with Hot rails to hell, everybody in the civic center is screaming for more and the place is lit up with everybodies lighters.
Out they come and blast into Born to be wild with the blue strobes going off, the scraping guitars and a hell bent for leather intensity that can't be beat.
All the way home we talked about Eric's boots with the kronos symbols on them, the strobes and the scraping guitars and Buck's guitar work.
Aerosmith came on next did some great songs, my favorite was Seasons of wither, but it just wasn't BOC.
Oh yes - I was there with several great friends in high school. I had read about Hydra and even purchased their first recording prior to the show. I didn't know they were even on the bill and I recognized them as they took the stage. A few really good songs, especially "Land Of Money".
BOC just destroyed the place. The "feud", I believe, relates to Aerosmith pulling the plug on BOC's use of FX as their warm up act. Then, quid pro quo, Aerosmith's entire sound and power mysteriously vanished mid set for them. Joey Kramer, Aerosmith's drummer did his solo acoustic, which was lame - I remember he goofed, grabbing his own head of hair and slamming his head into a drum while simultaneously using his kick pedal. Funny... but not as amusing as when singer Steven Tyler lept on stage after power resumed wanting to know "who was the cunt who shut us down."...
I remember that the set was very short after the power outage... It was a magical night in rock & roll.
That was the first time that Hydra played "Land Of Money" for people... it was worked up on the way to Springfield... and that was the name of the second album... I was happy as a pig in shit that night as the band played fucking great and I had a big ol PA to mix on and they didn't even sandbag me that I could notice...
I even got the PA company to give me a separate mic for the cowbell!!... the song they were opening with at the time featured very prominent cowbell and it was really hard to get it if I didn't have a separate mic on it... most PA companies would just laugh when I handed them the mic list with a cowbell mic listed on it...
Aerosmith didn't leave BOC much room, wouldn't let them use the lights they wanted to put up for their set, wouldn't let them use any lights on the main trusses and I believe didn't let them use any effects (fog/flashpots)...
Then during the Aerosmith set one of the see factor guys touring with BOC (Richard "Ho Chi" Holtz) slipped into the power distribution room and lifted the neutral on the power distro...
That fried most of the PA and lighting system... they finished their show with next to NO lights and sound... I was hip to the whole thing as it went down... Ho Chi had come up to me as I was standing on the side of the stage watching Aerosmith and told me to watch closely cause the show was about to get really interesting...
As he slipped away, I followed him and saw him go into the power room and figured he was gonna sabotage them in some way... as soon as he did it he left the building... nobody else with BOC had a clue what was going on...
Once the feces hit the fan, I was the one that took Downey and E.Crowe off to the side and told them that Richard had done something to the power, so they wouldn't be totally clueless...
11-10-74 - Aerosmith, BOC, Hydra
Well, Wally reckons this gig was Sunday 10 November - I think it was Sunday 3 November. Anybody know for sure?
I believe the concert was, indeed, held on Nov 03 and not Nov 10, as verified in the archives of the concert promoter, Jim Koplik, at the link below:
I only know of the existence of this gig thanks to an ad for it which appeared in the Sun 27 Oct 1974 edition of the "Star Tribune."
Recent BOC gigs with REO have seen REO headlining, but the ad leaves you in no doubt that this gig was a BOC headline show...
I was at this show and have a decent audience recording. Just found this while cleaning music room.
Good Show. Remember being bummed they didn't do Astronomy. Aerosmith was good too. Don't remember anything about Wet Willie.
November 17th 1974 is an important event from my teenage years. This event was billed in the local trade papers as ( dig this ! ): "Heavy Metal Sunday"
Obviously the advertising push was effective in getting the message across to a passionate rock and roll fan. I was the first person in line to buy tickets downtown at the Baltimore Civic Center box office... I don't remember many people being there to get seats. I was a high school senior at the time, and I cut school to be there the day the tickets went on sale.
The orchestra floor was standing room / general admission and the raised sections on the sides were assigned seating. My ticket was Lower Concourse Section 2 Seat 1. I sat in the first row on the corner of the first raised section at a 45 degree angle to the right of the stage.
The show running order went as follows:
(If I had to second guess my memory, Ruth Copland went first then PFM but the 3-4-5 slots are correct.)
Among the things I remember...
This concert was the first of two or possibly three BOC shows that I attended in the 70s-80's (thumbs up)... The most striking thing that I recall about seeing BOC for the first time was how cool it was to watch Eric Bloom (?) (aviator shades) during an instrumental climax to one of the songs.
He was standing sideways looking out to the audience, and leaning back while a power fan blew dry ice and smoke effects against him... - Not unlike the classic Maxell tape advertising concept, except he was standing not sitting in a chair
The spotlight was on him as he spun a pocket watch from the end of a watchfob chain in a 360 degree circle while strobe lighting emphasized the stuttering forward/reverse/stop/go visual eye candy--OH YEAH!!! The visual was a nice complement to some great rock and roll Cities on Flame, The Red and The Black.
Aerosmith were dynamite and the selections from their first two lps like "Mama Kin" and "Train Kept A Rollin'" were great. Steve Tyler was doin' the physical-front man / cartwheel-type stuff with his scarves providing visual flow from the mike stand.
We left early to midway through Steppenwolf because our ears were shot and we were exhausted from all the rock and roll fun.
I saw BOC several times. The first was at "Heavy Metal Sunday" at the "Civic Center" in Baltimore, MD Nov. 17, 1974.
Your band line-up is correct, but Ruth Copeland opened, not PFM. BOC came on third, followed by AEROSMITH, and STEPPENWOLF headlined.
I remember the crowd was very rowdy, beat up a security guard, and threw him off the back of the bleachers towards the rear of the main floor. I'm sure it was a long way down, and he was injured.
All I seem to remember about the BOC show is that they went down very well, and they had some sort of flame pyro onstage.
Gig review from the November 19, 1974, issue of the Baltimore Sun:
Gig review from the November 20, 1974, issue of the Green Bay Press-Gazette:
I was a fan of the Airplane and Starship but I was worried that the B.O.C. vibe would not translate very well to what certainly would be a rabid Starship home audience. I felt we might go over like the proverbial "lead balloon." As it turns out we were fairly well received and my fears were unfounded.
The day of this Saturday November 23 show, Eric Bloom was interviewed by a local Rock DJ. The interview did not go very well. The DJ asking questions, would follow up with “is the question to tough for you?” Eric finally got to the heart of what was on his mind. He said “people in the music business had told BOC that they wouldn’t be well received on the west coast, especially SF”.
As for the concert, most of the audience and the two people that I came with, did come to see J. Starship - not me. I was a big fan of BOC at this time. Lukewarm was the response for BOC, a few hand claps after each song and that was about it. They played 3 or 4 songs and left the stage.
Someone came out after they left the stage and said “you’re going to have to clap louder than that to bring this guys out for another song.” Some of us did and they came out for one more song. The next few times they came out to SF and the Bay Area, BOC was on top of the bill and they were great, great rocking shows.
BOC played at the California State Fair in Sacramento last night 7/15/11 and I was there - great show! It had been 25 years between BOC gigs for myself, but well worth the wait.
I found a preview for this gig in the 22-28 Nov edition of the "Berkeley Barb":
A Band With Evil Vibes
by Robert "Razor" Blades
The Blue Oyster Cult is coming to town. They'll be appearing with The Jefferson Starship at Winterland, San Francisco Saturday and Sunday along with Kansas on November 23 and 24.
Talking with head-Oyster Eric Bloom in Long Beach last month, he said, "I really don't see our getting up to the Bay Area soon. We don't ham for four hours and have good vibes, so Bill Graham won't book us. We have evil vibes, man!"
Well, that's the hype at least. The Blue Oyster Cult (BOC) are rumored to be the most hateful of nazis, singing blaring songs of mutation, tyranny, evil, cretins and destruction. Their theme is "Dominance And Submission," while the back of Secret Treaties, the newest album, shows four dogs bleeding to death under the wings of a super-sonic jet. On the front the dogs are posed with the band.
Mr. Graham knows a hot act when he hears of it though, and their inclusion on The Jefferson Starship show is probably to see how a typical San Francisco audience will react.
You'll remember Alice Cooper and David Bowie both flopped locally when their concert appearances were drawing huge crowds everywhere else in the world.
The difference here is primarily that The Cult doesn't come close to living up to their publicity, while Alice Cooper and David Bowie tried to better theirs each time out. In fact, except for Eric BOC is one of the most timid looking aggregations you're likely to find.
Three of the five barely stand five feet tall, and the remaining pair tape in at 5'7" and 5'8" -- pretty puny, I'd say.
Blue Oyster Cult is currently enjoying a rapidly spreading fire of acclaim from nearly every corner of the country. When I heard them in Long Beach they managed to sell over 10,000 tickets -- that's twice Winterland. The Cult is a headline act in nearly every American market, and their appearance in the Bay Area has been carefully planned.
A few months ago, when it didn't look as if Graham would book them on the type of bill they wanted, BOC's management contacted local promoters trying to set up a date. They were willing to play free if the exposure was right. In other words, they wouldn't play Keystone Berkeley - even for a considerable amount of money - but would rather play The Greek Theater and possibly take a loss.
BOC is the perfect example of a career being built on hype, and it's fascinating to watch!
They're bad, They are one of America's finest rock bands. They just aren't anything like they're cracked up to be. The image doesn't fit--not at all. The only one who looks anywhere near as satanic as he should is Eric, and off stage even he's small white and frail.
The creators of this image are Murray Krugman and Sandy Pearlman. Thanks to their efforts, another monster such as Grand Funk, Alice Cooper, etc., has been born.
At this point, however, I'm inclined to like it. Think seriously now - how many really good rock 'n' roll bands are coming out of America these days? If your answer to that question is "not many," then The Blue Oyster Cult will be a welcome surprise. It's just too bad this erroneous hype is what it takes. Maybe that says something about the audience as well as the performers?
The performance I saw in Long Beach on Oct 12 was that of an action packed rock 'n' roll band. Their agressive loud thrashing guitar style puts them in a category far removed from The Jefferson Starship, and it'll be interesting to see the crowds' reaction to this incongruous coupling.
So, what I'm telling you is not to be put off by the hype. Plug into some ballsy rock 'n' roll with The Blue Oyster Cult.
I found a review of this gig in the Mon 25 Nov 1974 edition of the "The San Francisco Examiner":
Grace Soars with Starship
by Philip Elwood
After a long nationwide tour, the Jefferson Starship came home this weekend for a couple of laid-back concerts at Winterland.
The Starship is even more than its predecessor the Jefferson Airplane, a vehicle for Grace Slick's remarkable vocal artistry. She is center stage most of the time, her singing dominates the Starship's trips, her sorceress stance and intriguing theatrics make for effective rock staging.
And these days in electric rock music, the most important difference between the bands must be determined by considering vocalists. There are dozens of superb instrumentalists for every above-average singer: when you have a Grace Slick in your Starship, you're already light years ahead of your instrumental peers.
The Winterland show last night with the Starship began with a lusty "Ride the Tiger," flew along with feature numbers by fiddler Papa John Creach (including "Down Home Blues") and drummer John Barbata, and spaced itself out with "Hyperdrive" and other extra-universe electric music themes.
"Come to Life" like much of the concerts core from the new Spaceship LP "Dragon Fly," was a gorgeous combination of Grace's best voice and Peter Sear's sporting-house blues piano.
The performance, the last of a long road tour, had touches of both exhaustion and celebration. Certainly Ms. Slick is in better voice than I can ever remember, and although she is surprisingly heavier than ever before, she is also apparently more relaxed and happier.
With David Freiberg (usually at the piano) and Paul Kantner (rhythm guitarist) providing strong vocal support, Ms. Slick power-housed her way through every number, never slipping her pitch, which must be innately perfect, and not once straining or faking.
Guitarist Craig Chaquico has emerged as a beautifully lyric, blues-based, lead and solo instrumentalist. He's working in a crowded instrumental team (especially considering Papa John's fiddle) yet rides handsomely above the ensemble.
The Starship is not flower-power Panhandle Rock: they remind me of the old Airplane only on a couple of encores. The Starship's crew is less pop and more rock'n'roll than its predecessors, far heavier in basic blast and more varied in material.
The importance of vocalists had already been demonstrated last night before the Starship arrived.
The sextet called Kansas began the show, often featuring four voices in vocals (usually well harmonized) and romping along with a powerful, noisy, loping style. They too feature a fiddle (Robbie Steinhardt) and, like the Starship, had dozens of couples dancing on the floor.
Completing the trans-America show was Blue Oyster Cult from Long Island. They are loud but balanced, feature three singers in their quintet and occasionally have a Procul Harum sound, although usually they're less controlled.
Lead guitarist Donald Roeser ("Buck Dharma") is quite impressive and Alan Lanier knows his keyboards better than most.
Blue Oyster Cult has a reputation for rough house, leather-jacket funk - last night they seemed to me to be musically better than that sort of image projects.
The only indication I have that BOC played this show was the above (first) ticket that appeared on eBay under the heading "Wishbone Ash BOC stub 70's Convention Hall St. Louis MO". The text description read: "This is a vintage Blue Oyster Cult, and Wishbone Ash concert ticket stub - Convention Hall St. Louis, MO. Thurs. Nov. 28th 1970's"
Wishbone Ash apparently played St Louis on 28 November 1974 on the Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash site - they give the venue as "Keil Auditorium", but apparently "Convention Hall" is a part of Kiel.
Also - further corroboration comes in the form of the following post on youTube:
Wishbone Ash & Blue Oyster Cult did annual concerts in St. Louis MO USA, always on Thanksgiving night.
My recollection (admittedly, altered as it was in the original) was that Bucky Dharma & BOC provided darkness & chaos & Wishbone Ash provided light & salvation (not necessarily in that order every year).
by thomasballsc (Sept 2011)
My knowledge of American holidays isn't great, but I believe Thanksgiving is the fourth Thursday in November - in 1974, that'd have been 28 November, so that ties up nicely date-wise.
The above post also implies there was a further BOC/Wishbone Ash double bill in St Louis on another Thanksgiving night - I know it couldn't have been 1975, so if we go the other way and look at Thanksgiving 1973, that'd be Thursday 22nd November 1973.
Another glance at Martin Turner's Wishbone Ash Tour Archive indicates Wishbone Ash played St Louis on 21st November... not Thanksgiving exactly, but close...
Could 21 November 1973 be a previously unlisted BOC/Wishbone Ash St Louis gig?
Please let me know if you have any info...
We were on the floor, fairly close to stage- great seats. Well what happened- as soon as the lights went down everyone picked up the chairs (they were linked together in groups of 4 or 5) and carried them forward. We were all packed in like sardines.
We must have brought a dozen joints with us. As soon as the lights went down, we fired them up and passed them out in all directions.
I remember Renaissance was rather tame. Don't remember much at all about the BOC set. I wasn't familiar with BOC save for maybe one radio hit at the time. But they sure as hell were LOUD.
I'm certain the order of appearance was Renaissance, BOC, Wishbone Ash.
I also think the year 1974 is correct. I drove us in my recently purchased '66 VW Beetle...
I found a mention of this show in the 24 November 1974 issue of the "St. Louis Post-Dispatch":
Thanksgiving Day at Kiel will have four acts, including Wishbone Ash, Blue Oyster Cult, Camel and Fancy
The 27 November issue had this:
Nov 28 Thanksgiving Day Concert '74 at Kiel
Blue Oyster Cult
4.00, 5.00, 6.00
So it looks like "Fancy" had dropped off the bill by then - or maybe they just didn't want to waste space on the openers...?
Whatever, it looks like maybe Gary's idea above that Renaissance played this gig is incorrect - seems like it was "Camel" who opened (or maybe it was Fancy, if they did indeed play the gig).
The Sensational Alex Harvey Band opened... eventually. In the roasting hot, badly oversold Aragon (which was a hellhole even in the best of conditions), SAHB finally sauntered onto the stage, at least one hour late. Not a good way to endear themselves to the notoriously surly Aragon crowd, who usually had little patience with the first band on the bill.
So SAHB finally gets onstage... and Alex Harvey promptly refuses to begin the set without his cheesy, pre-recorded trumpet fanfare. The Sensational One walked offstage again, for several more minutes, while his "fanfare" was cued up.
Finally the set starts, but the damage had been done. Harvey could have given a twenty dollar bill to each member of the 4,000+ crowd, it wouldn't have helped, Harvey had lost the audience before the first note had been played. Idiot.
The booing, verbal abuse, and garbage and beer-tossing intensified as the set went on... and on... and on. Finally, after spray painting some gibberish on a fake wall on the stage, Alex & his droogies finished up... luckily escaping without being lynched.
Manfred Mann's Earth Band played their usual excellent set (I'd seen them several times), then BOC finally hit the stage, and, as always, blew the roof off the Aragon.
I could never decide whether the Raspberries (subbing for the Stooges) at the Auditorium Theater (December 1973) or SAHB got a worse reception as an opening act for BOC. But the Raspberries really did nothing to deserve the abuse heaped upon them that night, they simply weren't the Stooges, absolutely the wrong band to open for the hellfire and brimstone of BOC. SAHB asked for the abuse, and Harvey egged the crowd on.
It took many years for me to realize the Raspberries were actually a pretty good band in a thankless, no win position. While the SAHB just asked for what they got, and they weren't all that good to begin with.
This date is confirmed by the Aragon venue website.
Here's a quote from an interview with the Sensational Alex Harvey Band that appeared in the NME on 18 January 1975:
The actual point of this encounter is to let you know how well The Sensational Alex Harvey Band did on their American Tour. Those of you who can recall the epic pelting they received at the hands of Uriah Heep fans at Alexandra Palace may be amused to know that similar occurrences were devised by the colonials.
"Aye. They gave us some stick in Chicago," Harvey recalls fondly. "The guy from the record company was nearly in tears - but we got some unbelievable press of it."
They were supporting Blue Oyster Cult and Manfred Mann. The furore erupted as Harvey pulled out the opening lines of Jacques Brel's "Next". He reacted by grinning broadly and blowing kisses.
"It's the sixth time it's happened to this band. That particular point in the set is very much touch and go for people who've never seen us. I mean, I think a lot of them get really distrubed by 'Next'. They think it's a piss-take..."
"It is, after all" added Cleminson "almost corny."
Just found the BOC site accidentally while looking for other industry info, what a great site this is, well done.
I was with Manfred Mann during 74 and was FOH eng for the Fall shows. A very important piece of info is missing from this event. While it is true that Alex Harvey bombed out and simply did not come across to the audience it was not his fault the show started late.
BOC had not informed the sound company that there was a show that day, so here we are doing one of the worst load-ins in America without the audio production crew. George Geranios (FOH BOC) and I set the pa up with stage hands but all cabling, patching, and power runs were done by the two of us.
Here's the catch: all amplifier to speaker connections were done with banana plugs, nothing was labelled for frequency range, not on the amp racks, not on the speaker cabs, just multiple banana jacks. I would patch a cable in and George would say if it sounded right or not, then we would both listen before moving to the next connection: how tedious is that?
Alex Harvey had two female backup singers that were slightly stage right of the drum kit, while walking behind the drummer just prior to their set ending I noticed the drummer had a very special view, there were large cutouts in the girls dresses and their butts were completely exposed, only as the show ended did the girls turn around and "salute" the audience, by then the crowd were so pissed with Alex they probably didn't notice this fanfare.
Hope this adds another piece to the puzzle.
OK, for the longest time I had two gigs vying for this date: Davenport IA and Omaha NE - both backed up with contemporaneous pieces of dating evidence!!
But I've had to make a choice and as a result of the work done by Quad City music researcher Joel Kolsrud, I've now decided Davenport to be the most likely candidate for a gig on this date.
I found a clipping from the Omaha (NE) World Herald from November 30, 1974, advertising the concert for December 1, 1974, but it only mentions The Guess Who, unfortunately, no one else.
I looked over the Omaha World Herald archives and found nothing other than "a rock concert on Monday night" type stuff and without mentioning any names.
Now that I know that there was a BOC gig was scheduled for the next night in Sioux Falls, also with Wolfman Jack and the Guess Who, but that BOC cancelled and were replaced by REO Speedwagon, I am now reasonably certain that BOC are highly likely to have done the same with this gig.
Maybe REO Speedwagon replaced them at Omaha also?
As mentioned above in the Omaha NE entry, I have now come to the conclusion that the gig that BOC played on this date was in fact Davenport.
Now, the prospect of a Davenport gig on this date had already become apparent to me from two online sources:
Joel Kolsrud kindly sent me the above adverts which indicated a different line-up: Foghat supported by BOC and SAHB at the Palmer Junior College, Davenport
It's basically a given they were in Davenport on December 1st. Ads for that billing went back more than two weeks, and I've talked with several people who remember BOC and Foghat that night.
Regarding the discrepancy concerning Premiata Forneria Marconi instead of SAHB on the prospective Davenport date:
I've been combing over some stuff and ran across a guestbook site for PFM. The comment is from 1997, but I believe it to be valid. Not only does the poster mention that PFM replaced SAHB, but it also mentions that BOC and Foghat followed!
Here is the link for the site:
It's the 14th comment listed and is written by Rene Faoro of Clive, IA, USA. This is the first confirmation I've ever seen for this event and again, believe this to be valid enough to solve the mystery of December 1, 1974.
Thanks Joel. Very useful to get a confirmation that the gig actually happened - as well as clearing up the confusion of PFM vs SAHB - though of course it doesn't confirm the actual date. In case that guestbook goes offline in the future, here's the text:
Reno Faoro, Summit Clive, Iowa, USA.
I first saw them (PFM) in Davenport Iowa. They replaced The Sensational Alex Harvey Band and started the show for Foghat and Blue Oyster Cult. They started out with Celebration and really got the crowd going. They knew that since they were in a smaller urban area and might not be known that they would have to start with their most familiar song. Believe it or not one of the best prog stations in the USA was located there and finally changed their format in the late 80's to Country. The Photos of Ghosts title track is one of my favorite cuts just because of the beautiful Italian folk like sound.
August the 6th 1997
I was at the Davenport show. Don't remember the first act, but I was there to see BOC and Foghat.
Also I remember that it wasn't at the RKO Orpheum, where I saw BOC in '74 with Mahogany Rush and '75 with Rush. Palmer College of Chiropractice had a pretty nice auditorium, just not as big as the RKO.
Wish I was more helpful on the date, with a ticket stub or poster, but it was the first big concert I ever attended and aspects of it, I'll never forget.
We came from out of town, the roads were horrible and we didn't stay for all of Foghat's set. BOC pretty much blew them off the stage.
I found an ad in the October 20, 1974, issue of the Sioux Falls Argus-Leader from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, mentioning a Guess Who / BOC / Wolfman Jack concert at the Sioux Falls Arena on November 2.
Nov 2 is the date for the Guess Who concert at the Sioux Falls Arena. The Blue Oyster Cult will be with them as well as Wolfman Jack. More good groups have responded for later this year.
In next week's issue (Oct 27), there was another ad for the Nov 2 concert, though it mentions BOC cancelling due to prior engagements and being replaced by REO Speedwagon.
The Guess Who Concert with Wolfman Jack and REO Speedwagon is only a week away. Blue Oyster Cult canceled because of previous engagements, but REO Speedwagon is a great band to take their place.
Given that BOC were originally scheduled to support Wolfman Jack and the Guess Who the previous day also in Omaha, I'm now even more sure that they cancelled that also.
74-12-07: Toledo OH Setlist:
The only evidence I have that this show even existed is the above stub off eBay - and the only evidence I have that BOC was on the bill is the fact that the guy wrote it on his stub.
Can anyone corroborate?
I'm pretty sure I was at this show... I think... memory fades after so long but... yes... I was there!
Was my Junior year in HS and we went on a class trip to DC with a bunch of farmers (I'm originally from North Dakota) to visit our Congressmen.
I remember seeing an ad for the show in one of the newspapers provided by the hotel we were booked into. Myself and a few of my more adventurous classmates took a taxi to the Cap Centre and bought tix at the door.
I remember being amused at how shocked some of my mates were that all the people around us were passing joints. Probably why I can't remember any details about the show itself except that it was great fun.
Hey! Thanks for the great web page!
This gig was reviewed in the December 11, 1974, issue of the Baltimore Sun.
Here's the text of that review that Ian mentioned above:
Loud is what it's all about at Largo concert
By Stephen Henderson
As the lead singer from the Blue Oyster Cult put it, "Loud, man, I mean that's what it's all about" - and that statement just about sums up the significance of Monday night's Bachman-Turner Overdrive concert at the Largo Capital Center.
Also appearing on the bill with BTO were Bob Seeger (sic) and his band and Blue Oyster Cult.
Leading the show and proving to be musically the high point of the evening was Bob Seeger and his four-piece back-up band of Michigan rock musicians. Seegar's vocals and piano playing, accompanied by bass guitar, drums and organ, functioned smoothly through a set of standard rock and roll mixed with a bit of original material just creative enough to stimulate the interest of a top-40 level audience.
Catchy tunes, delivered in a sufficiently relaxed manner as to not grate upon the nerves distinguished this band from the other two, and perhaps that extra amount of effort put out by those so far unjaded by sidespread "success."
Second on the bill was the horrendous Blue Oyster Cult, a five piece glitter band hot of the 1970's rock and roll show biz machine. Possibly with a different focus and a little reorganization this band could be decent, but they currently rely strictly upon gimmickry and visual effect.
Smoke machines, flashpots, strobe lights and the seemingly inescapable dual lead riffs prevailed throughout a boring heavy metal 60-minute set. A respectable quantity of expensive keyboard equipment complete with piano, organ and synthesizer occupied the stage but was practically unused as, at one point, four guitars screeched in chaos of undirected sound.
This band clearly has not much new to offer other than rehashed late Sixties rock. The only real talent visible was that of the lead guitarist who showed occasional flashes of ability and generally carried the musical weight of the band.
Topping the bill was top 40's own Bachman-Turner Overdrive, whose overexposure on the airwaves has clearly defined their musical bag. Short commercial songs with catchy repetitive riffs, played at peak volume and accompanied by husky rough-tough vocals are what they are all about.
Their music is on such a low intellectual plane that it appeals to only a limited audience conditioned by massive radio exposure to respond to it.
Again, blaring heavy guitar and dual lead riffs were everpresent, and loudness was the band's most distinguishing characteristic.
The audience, primarily junior-senior high school aged people, was well behaved and responded predictably to all of the calculated stimuli. The sound quality, surprisingly enough, was unusually high, with instruments balanced well throughout and vocals generally clear and distortion-free.
The primary significance of this concert and others of its nature is the extreme extent to which a flashy stage show precludes the necessity of original and meaningful material for the financial success of a rock band. All show and no substance seems all this is necessary for success in this part of the industry, providing one can put up with the monotony of the music and the insanity of such an unstable business.
I don't often comment on negative reviews but I do have to remark that this particular reviewer is a pompous plank of the highest - or should that be lowest? - order...
I have been looking for years and can't find my FIRST time that I saw BOC live. To this day they are my favorite band. The date in question is 6 DEC 1974 (at least that is my recollection). They played with Bob Seger and BTO was the headline act. This occurred in Utica NY.
This was important because the Utica paper ran a headline in the inside section a day or so later stating that 7400+ people showed up for the show. This is still the record for any event in the Utica Memorial Colusiem because this was more than 800+ over the fire code. Looking on the Giglopeadia page, it doesn't list that they ever played with BTO, so it should be relatively easy to authenticate.
Well, if it DID take place on that date, it's an unknown gig I need to document. I'd be interested to know what makes you say THAT date and year specifically? Is it memory alone?
> 7400+ people showed up for the show
According to the various websites which give info on the venue, it's max capacity is 4000 and that rises to 5200 for concerts. Have you still got the newspaper clipping? That would obviously help date the show...
> it doesn't list that they ever played with BTO
Well, they've played with them in 73 and 74, but all the Bob Seger gigs take place during 1976 - some early in that year, but most of them from summer through to December 76.
Any info that anyone can offer that might help me to help place this show for sure would be very gratefully received.
Ralph, It was December of '74 and the 6th seems right. That would have been a Friday with no school the next day and I know I would have had grief from parents if there was school. It was cold and snowing that evening.
I do not recall attendance, but the Utica Aud was packed. Bob Seger played first and no body around me knew who he was, but he rocked the house.
BOC played next and was even better. BTO was a let down and after the show when the house lights came on the place seemed about only 1/2 to 3/4 full.
BTO was not very impressive, but BOC and Seger gained many fans that night. I'll look for my ticket stub, but fear that one is gone.
I cannot confirm the date, but I do remember attending a BOC concert in Utica, NY! I also know it was before I graduated high school in June 1975 and I'm pretty sure in was cold and snowy when we went which makes the date that has been suggested (6 Dec. 1974) very plausible. In fact, I was trying to recall the details of the concert after other of my friends started posting "the first concert I ever attended" on Facebook.
I contacted one friend that I remember going with and she confirmed that if her parents drove us to the concert as I remembered the venue HAD to be Utica. She couldn't remember the exact date, but suggested I contact her brother because "he is good with dates".
Here is a snippet from the e-mail I received in response when I asked him if he remembered going with us: "I actually remember it well! The only way my parents would let Deb go was if I went. I took Pam Richmond, who I was dating at the time, and was in your (high school) class. I'm pretty sure you were all 16 and I was 14.
I'm also fairly certain it was in December or January of 1973 or 1974. There were 3 bands and the opening band was Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band! I don't think any of us had ever heard of him at that point. BOC was the second band, BTO headlined. I remember that my parents drove us there. Hope that helps!"
So, while I can't find a ticket stub or a newspaper clipping, I clearly remember attending the concert. As my friend (above) and Brian Carrier have both pointed out - few had heard of the two "warm-up" acts before the concert - most of us came to see Bachman Turner Overdrive. I knew Blue Oyster Cult had played second but I had initially forgotten whom appeared first, until Gary jogged my memory.
But, now I am sure it was Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band. The date that has been suggested (6 Dec 1974) also seems to fit with my friend's recollection.
OK - I've re-dated this gig now to the 11th December, thanks to a clipping kindly sent to me by Jill Atwood from the 12 December issue of The Observer Dispatch which talked of "last night's gig " and gave the crowd as 7640, breaking box-office records:
It's Overdrive and Overflow at Concert
By Yolanda Jones
The Bachman-Turner Overdrive drove their funky brand of music over the overflow crowd at their concert in the Memorial Auditorium last night.
Last night's crowd, about 7640, broke box office records, according to Joe Critelli, auditorium box office manager.
BTO, a group of four musicians from Canada, thrilled the audience with its hit singles such as "Takin' Care of Business," "Let It Ride," "You Ain't Seen nothing Yet" and others.
Even with its efforts, the group was difficult to hear because of its sound system, explained an auditorium official.
"Each group brought their own amplifiers," he said. "It would be impossible to equip any auditorium in the country with a system for a concert like this."
Regardless of the distrorted songs, BTO gave each fan his money's worth of entertainment. BTO, however, did not extend the standard three minutes on its songs like Bob Seger and Blue Oyster Cult, two groups preceding BTO.
Bob Seger, a five-piece band, delighted the audience with its hits, "Ramblin' Gamblin' Man and "Get Out of Denver." As Seger shimmied and shook with each sound, a fan in a tuxedo jacket, bounded on the stage beneath him.
Blue Oyster Cult began its performance with a puff and gray smoke before they excited the crowd with "Buck's Boogie", "Cities on Flame" and "Stairway to the Stairs." The audience showed their appreciation by screaming and clapping after each song and gave Blue Oyster Cult a standing ovation.
Just as much of a show was in the stands, on the auditorium floor and in the lobby as on stage. At least four youths walked around wearing long, slinky black capes. Two youths decided to use their faces as a canvas and one had a purple and white streak diagonally across his face.
Thanks Jill... You have got to love the concept of a "Stairway to the Stairs"...
I first heard of BOC while stationed with the US Army in Thailand in July 74. I happened on their first album at the base library. Signed out the album and kept it until I came back to the States in July 74.
When I heard BOC was playing in Utica, had to have tickets. It did not matter to me that they were warm up for BTO. I am not sure of the date, know it was in December, but remember the Utica Memorial Auditorium was completely packed.
This was my first concert so remember who was there. First on was Bob Seger, then BOC was up second and my wife complained how loud they were (I still chuckle about that comment). Our seats were in the stands to the left of the stage below the speakers. Don't remember the exact set list, but believe Astronomy was one of the last tunes played.
I know when they cleared the stage, I was disappointed they could not play longer. The concert was great even though BTO had not played yet. BTO (wife and I were fans of the band) stayed for their entire performance, but a lot of people began leaving after BOC.
Since then I have seen BOC 3 more times and will gladly see them again. Kinda funny - I was listening to a BTO CD a few months ago and found I no longer like their music (way to mild). My music preference is heavy metal, death metal, Goth metal, melodic death metal, etc. I still listen to BOC with great pleasure.
I was at this concert. I was attending college in Herkimer, NY. At the time. My very first concert.
Bob Seger System was excellent, BOC, who I never heard of, stole the show.
Their encore was totally awesome. BTO sucked. Out of sync and they just seemed to go through the motions. Many left before they were done and they were literally booed off the stage.
We all chanted for BOC who came back out for two more songs!!!
The old gig lists at boc.com had just a single show down for this venue, and that was two days after this date, namely Sunday 15 December 1974.
However, I've now discounted that in favour of two nights here - 13/14 Dec - with Manfred Mann in support, thanks to a mention in the upcoming gigs calendar section of the Ann Arbor Sun.
The 6 December 1974 edition lists this show as:
Friday 13 December 1974: Michigan Concert Palace: Blue Oyster Cult & Manfred Mann, 8pm.
Looking at the other listings in the paper, I noticed the Ann Arbor Sun tends to list the headliner first in its entries, so that's the order I've gone with.
The 6 December 1974 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun lists this show as:
Saturday 14 December 1974: Michigan Concert Palace: Blue Oyster Cult & Manfred Mann, 8pm.
Check out the two dates above to find out why I've now relegated this show to the status of "Phantom" gig...
One thing to note is that this date is listed on the now offline motorcitymusicarchives.com website as having taken place, but as they give no other details or info source or proof like ticket stubs etc, I'm therefore not too worried that just because they list it, that must mean that I've got it wrong (famous last words)...
74-12-15: Detroit MI Setlist:
Bolle's setlist is dated 15th December, but as I mentioned above, I currently think there were two gigs at the Michigan Palace, but not on the 15th - rather, they were on the 13th and 14th - if so, I don't know which night this setlist might be from...
I've been to your site wondering why no one had posted a concert not listed on BOC's or Rush's site.
I don't have a ticket stub but know it was in December 1974 at the Warehouse in New Orleans. (The site for concerts at the Warehouse does not list this concert)
Found out about the upcoming concert in a Circus Magazine. Maybe someone with old Circus Magazines could find the date of that concert.
The upcoming concert site in Circus Magazine mentioned the encore was ME262 with all band members joining in on guitar.
The concert was before Christmas, though. By looking at open dates on yours and a Rush site, it looks like it was between the 2nd and 4th of December. Most probably the 3rd or 4th.
The 2nd was a Monday and I would know if it was then because I would have missed my favorite show, Monday Night Football.
It also could have been the 18th or 19th. But it wasn't too close to Christmas (not a date in the 20s).
It was my first BOC concert and was at the Warehouse. Rush was a new band but much of the crowd, it seemed, came to see them. Not me, though.
I was 17 and went with my brother and his girlfriend. I was sitting with them in the stands and remember most of the songs.
Just like the album from the tour, OYFOOYK, it started with the first 2 songs, Subhuman and Harvester of Eyes.
They didn't have lazers yet but, during the first 2 songs, they directed a big spotlight straight up to a big disco mirror ball spinning slowly. I was watching the lights on the wall as the songs were played.
I remember "I ain't got you" being played. It wasn't a BOC song and it dragged on. I thought they were just jamming around. After the album came out,
2 or 3 months later, I see what was played. They also played Bucks Boogie. That was the first time hearing that.
Then I told my brother I was going to try getting by the stage and would meet them after the show. I made it to the front. They played everything on the OYFOOYK album except The Red and The Black. That was my favorite song and that's how I know it wasn't played. (I was hollaring Red and Black.)
But I do believe they played all the songs from Secret Treaties. They finished the regular concert with Born to be Wild and came back for the encore with ME262 with 5 guitars.
Another thing, the blackstrat.net site for concerts at the Warehouse in New Orleans is not accurate. I saw Slade at the Warehouse June 15, 1974 and there were 4 other bands.
That site only has 2 other bands listed: 1974 Jun 15 - Slade\Brownsville Station\Robin Trower. That concert opened with Metroplex and also had the Atlanta Rhythm Section.
Update: After going over the official list, I believe it to be 19 December. I thought it could be the 4th but my brother was back for Christmas break.
I had thought it was not on the official list because supposedly they couldn't play a date up north because of the weather. But then I remember the concert date listed in the Circus magazine and reading about the 5 guitars on ME262 before seeing it.
I probably got the tickets the first day they went on sale. I probably bought my brother's tickets to make sure I got there. He drove, I didn't.
I remember we stayed after the show and watched the roadies load the truck.
Saw this show (12/20/74) at old Municipal in KC. ZZTop headlined, BOC was actually the second of three bands, but we got there a bit late and didn't pick up on who opened.
I've seen BOC quite a few times over the years, but this remains the best show - musically - that I've seen them do. A lot of Secret Treaties stuff, Red and the Black, Last Days of May, the usual pre-Agents of Fortune setlist (but no Astronomy.)
They were on top of their game that night, and the entire set absolutely kicked like nothing I'd seen to that point. ME262 was particularly memorible. ZZ Top was good, but BOC was - as they say - "amazing." I'd have hated to have been the headliner that night.
I only know of this gig thanks to a listing in the 20 Dec 1974 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun, which gave this info:
Monday 23 Dec 1974: Mr Flood's Party, Ann Arbor: Acid Rock Revival, w/ Blue Oyster Cult, Electric Mud, Flim Flam & the Foofaraws, 9.30, Free
"Free"...? How can that be? I looked up the venue - Mr Flood's Party - and it's a very small bar so I don't get the economics of hiring a band like Blue Oyster Cult to play there.
More photos and local stories about the place can be found here.
The above ad says that Rush were on this bill although I did hear that this information might be inaccurate. Since then I have now received some more definite info from Eric Hansen from the Power Windows website:
I've heard from Rush's roadie, Ian Grandy, regarding Rush opening for BOC at the Boston Orpheum in Dec. '74 and he confirmed they did not play:
"I believe the boys went into the studio to do Fly by Night in a short space of time right after Christmas, therefore we would not have played with BOC in Boston, in fact I think Boston was a city we didn't play for a couple of years at the beginning, so no..."
Since then, I've come across a "review" of this gig in the Tue 31 Dec 1974 edition of The Boston Globe which confirms the lack of participation in this show by our favourite Canadian trio:
Blue Oyster Cult brings Sci-Fi rock to Music Hall
By Michael Nicholson
Even though Blue Oyster Cult was a disappointment on record, there were hopes of a dynamic, entertaining stage show from the group at the Orpheum Saturday night - something to close out this depressing year with a wicked bang - but instead there was just a pompous, sophomoric whimper.
Theoretically, Blue Oyster Cult seemed a good idea. Formed by a rock critic tired of people posing the "how can you pan that group, when you couldn't do any better?" question, they were to feature a brand of science-fiction hard rock, a 2084 music of oppression, decadence and paranoia set to intelligent and witty lyrics.
Unfortunately, there exists a disparity between what you expect and what you get. The neo-decadent lyrics have intelligence (though that's not to say they're particularly intelligent), but they are tedious and annoyingly sophomoric with not enough wit to justify their intricacy in a rock setting. To compound matters, the lyrics are largely lost amid the roar of the music when delivered on stage by lead vocalist and stun guitarist, Eric Bloom.
But their audience doesn't care about the words, they come to be bludgeoned by the music and hear Buck Dharma's flash guitar, and in that respect they weren't disappointed.
Opening with a blasting rendition of "Stairway to the Stars," and other assorted goodies such as "Career of Evil," "Subhuman," and "The Joke's on You," they ably demonstrated another glaring weakness. Their material lacks diversity, their object being to overpower the listener above all else.
They have a few novel ideas, a few imaginative progressions and changes, but they keep repeating them with slight variations, and because the arrangements are set at unvarying speed and volume, boredom soon set in.
The only positive aspect is guitarist Buck Dharma (Donald Roeser). "Buck's Boogie," a pure instrumental of great flash and marvelous pacing, finally succeeded in injecting some genuine excitement into the proceedings, and was marred only by the inclusion of a tasteless, lengthy drum solo.
That led to the all-stops-pulled finale of "ME 262," featuring strobes, smoke, flashing colored lights and a gimmicky guitar "ensemble" where everyone, Dharma, Bloom, Allen Lanier, bassist Joe Bouchard and even drummer Albert Bouchard, straps on guitars to blast the night away. Flashy and entertaining as they were, the last two numbers did little to dispel the tedium that had preceded them.
A new group called American Tears opened the evening. A variation on the classic rock power trio, with keyboards replacing guitar, their hard rock set lacked that guitar punch. Their lead singer-keyboardist has to have one of the most self-conscious pouts in rock.
Christ on a bike, reviewer Michael Nicholson is obviously a complete and utter pompous twunt... "But their audience doesn't care about the words, they come to be bludgeoned by the music", eh...? Well, at least BOC will be glad to know that "they have a few novel ideas, a few imaginative progressions and changes", according to Michael... that'll give them something to try and build on for the future so that, should Michael ever again have the misfortune to be forced to watch their tedious and repetitive "gimmickry" in future, he won't be so offended...
Furthermore, it was sad to hear that "Blue Oyster Cult was a disappointment on record", especially when you consider that the record in question was "Secret Treaties"...
The listings pages from the 9, 16 and 23 Dec 1974 editions of "The Journal" (see above) says that Rush were the support.
However, Eric Hansen says the same reason why Rush dropped out of the previous night's gig in Boston (see above) also applies here, and Rush did not play this gig...
Does anybody out there know who did support BOC at this show?
Well it was my first time seeing BOC, I went with my friend Andy Baum who had played some BOC on his radio show at Albany State U (I think) and thought it would be cool to see them.
I remember Carmen was booed throughout their set (except during one really nice tune with the lyric "I fought now I think I won") which actually got some radio airplay. Camel was a British Prog-Rock band and were OK.
I truly don't recall much of the BOC set (early show) but they did "Subhuman" and I thought they might have done a song called "Hansel & Gretel" but I'm probably wrong.
When they did "Buck's Boogie" a small fire broke out by some seats near us but was quickly put out and when they took too long between songs some guy yelled out, "Hey,you're not THAT good."
I wish I could remember more of that gig but it was my first (of 100+) and just six weeks later I saw them open for Rod Stewart at Madison Square Garden and that one I remember like it was yesterday.
I went to see BOC on New Year's Eve, 74-75 at the Academy of Music in NYC. Went with a bunch of friends, all UTI of something or other, but I still remember the show. Top ten.
A flamenco-rock band ( presented by David Bowie ) named Carmen opened. Ha Ha - they were not my cup of sangria. Then a rock band named Camel, I dunno if they had Peter Frampton or not, they were ok. Guess it wasn't Frampton cos I liked Humble Pie.
Then the lights went out and we heard some big screen drop down behind the drumkit's shadow. We figured it was the eyeless kid from the ad for the show, but it turned out to be the 1st BOC album art.
The sound guy was playing "I'm Just a Singer in a Rock and Roll Band". The lights came on and BOC came out, behind them was some sort of Nuremburg Rally thing with long black banners with BOC logos on them.
They opened with "Stairway to the Stars". They were very, VERY LOUD! Still one of the loudest shows I've seen and I still go to many.
Saw a few of the local music scene there, Patti Smith and some of the Dolls. They did a great set, some of it is on On Yer Feet, I think. Eric shaved himself with an amplified razor for his New Year's resolution. That was cool. He was in Black leather, Buck in white and Al in boxing shorts.
At the end of the encore Buck stood there pulling the strings off his white SG, one-by-one.
There are some excellent photos from this concert taken by Mark Friedman on the deviantArt site:
74-12-31: 1st Show Setlist:
74-13-31: 2nd Show Setlist:
I think also that these date(s) were played in 1974 - if you have any info, please let me know:
I saw the following FB post on the topic of seeing the "five guitars":
It was 1974 for me at the old Flint Michigan IMA auditorium, with Mahogany Rush, and Rob Tyner from the MC5. Al Bouchard came out in gold shorts, and with what appeared to be a bottle of Jack!
I know it was 1974 for sure, because I'd just got in my driver's license 2 months before, as I lived in Midland Michigan. We went to the ticket office and got second row Center seats 4:30 p.m. the night of the show.
Frank Marino played all Jimi Hendrix songs, then smashed his guitar into his amps with a strobe light going. Bloom was wearing a long black cape, and there was a set of keyboards up front.
They opened with some Subhuman. I was brand new to them at the time but I recognized that song. WTAC out of Flint Michigan was promoting that show, and playing Cities on Flame on a regular basis.
I also saw them in the fall of 1976 at the same Flint IMA. Likewise 1977 on the Spectres tour. Saw them four times on that tour. But I remember that concert in 1974 like it was yesterday!
BTW: I see they played in Detroit Michigan, Olympia Stadium, September 2, 1974. The next gig was September 14th at Saratoga performing arts Center Saratoga springs New York. I bet they shoehorned that gig in between September 2nd and September 16th.
I remember clearly it was a Friday night, and it was still warm so in Michigan that would dictate the early part of September. Tour dates of yore also doesn't indicate any backup band at Olympia stadium.
All I know is I was converted to a fan that night, and have remained so to this day! In fact I had Tyranny and Mutation on vinyl in Quadraphonic!
I couldn't find a mention of any such gig in the currently available online newspaper listings for 1974, unfortunately...
Looking at the two other bands on the bill for clues didn't prove very fruitful. The presence of Rob Tyner on a 1974 bill is intriguing. On the face of it, it would seem a little early for him... as far as I can find out, he played a few local dates as "Fireworks" in late 1975, but it wasn't until 77 that he formed the Rob Tyner Band aka "New MC5"... in early 78, they even supported BOC in Muskegon, billed as simply "MC-5", which was a bit naughty...
Currently, the earliest known BOC/Mahogany Rush gigs were in Aug 1976 but Mahogany Rush certainly seem to have played a lot of gigs in the Michigan area during 1974 so a Flint gig would seem to fit in from that viewpoint.
They do seem to have played a Michigan Palace gig on 14 Sep 1974, so that is also worth bearing in mind.
However, mahoganyrushlive.com don't seem to know about it yet, unfortunately...
Chronologically, logic would suggest that a Flint gig would fit in neatly around the time of the 2 Sep Detroit Olympia gig suggested by Bud, but the only problem there is that I've never been able to stand that Olympia gig up - no mention or listings in any of the online newspaper sources that I've been able to find.
Regarding the playing of Subhuman - we don't have many setlists from 1974 - currently only 22 are known - but using that small sample size, we can say that Subhuman doesn't seem to have been a set staple. It was played first played in May '74 and then the next time we see it is Dec '74. So, not much help, to be honest...
BTW: There's no known gig where BOC have ever opened with Subhuman - the fact that OYF opens with that was just a quirk of the track listings.
Could anyone out there help nail this gig down a bit further with some dating information...?
On show 68 of Albert Bouchard's online radio show ("The Space Rock Special" - Tue 30 Jan 2018), Albert casually mentioned that BOC once opened a bunch of shows with Hawkwind.
That was news to me, so I pressed him for further details:
"It was in the US. 2 gigs in the midwest I think. Is there a Hawkwind database of gigs that goes back to 73-74?"
Well, I found a Hawkwind gig list here, but it doesn't say who else was on any of the bills, unfortunately. In a nutshell, it seems as if the Hawks were in the US for a few dates at the end of Nov/start of Dec 73, then they came back in March/April 74 and then again in Sept/Oct 74... If BOC played with Hawkwind in this period, then those are the three "windows" where this could have occurred. Strangely, this tied in with something I once saw in the 8 June 1974 edition of Billboard - in the "studio news" section I saw this small item:
Metro Audio, remote studio firm out of Royal Oak, Mich., cut live dates on Arlo Guthrie & Pete Seeger, Blue Oyster Cult and Hawkwind and Man for United Artists.
The company features a one-tone Chevrolet Step Van with a 24 input 16-track console and 16-track and 2-track Scully recorders. JBL L100 monitor speakers are also included.
The custom-built console is custom-built from Audi Designs modules and components. Chuck Buchanan owns Metro, with Scott Smith handling engineering.
So that seems to suggest that not only did BOC play with Hawkwind sometime prior to June 1974, they were also recorded by a Michigan-based audio company, thus adding weight to Albert's "mid-west" contention)! And as it was in "Studio News", then it must have happened fairly recently to June, otherwise it wouldn't have been erm "news"... Plus, the text also seems to imply that Man might also have been on the bill. It's confusingly-worded though, it's hard to be sure.
I did some deep, detailed research on Man (OK, you got me - I looked on their wiki page) and saw this:
In March/April 1974 Man supported Hawkwind on The 1999 Party, a 5-week US tour.
So that was interesting - that puts Man also on the bill with Hawkwind, by the looks of it.
Going back to the dates on that Hawkwind page, I now have much narrower timeframe and location parameters to focus on. Here are the March/April 1974 Hawkwind gigs they list for the "midwest":
15/3/1974 Kansas City MO [Soldiers & Sailors] 16/3/1974 St. Louis MO [Auditorium] 19/3/1974 Milwaukee WI [Riverside Theatre] 21/3/1974 Chicago IL [Auditorium Theatre] 22/3/1974 Cleveland OH [Allen Theatre] 23/3/1974 Detroit MI [Palace] 24/3/1974 South Bend IN [Morris Auditorium]
I suppose it depends how we're defining "midwest" - clearly some of those dates above couldn't really be described using that term, but I'll leave them in for now.
Logic would suggest that the best date for a Michigan company to record would be the Detroit Palace show on 23 March 1974, but obviously their "one-tone Chevrolet Step Van" could travel anywhere "locally" that they were commissioned for, so of course, it could be a different gig(s) entirely.
I did see BOC at the Chicago Auditorium in December 1973. I swear I saw them a second time and I thought it was at an Ice Rink in Naperville, IL. in 1974.
It was middle of summer because the ice was not in place and I remember standing in line outside of the venue on a warm evening.
Is there any possibility they could have performed there the first week of August? I see they were close by in Indiana that week.
I did not think my memory was that bad. If you know of or when that might have happened?
The best concert I've ever been to was a combination Blue Oyster Cult / Moody Blues concert when I was 7 years old. We had great floor seats and there was a pyrotechnics show.
I was a little kid in New Orleans and went with my mother and her boyfriend to that concert. There were two places they went to concerts fairly often, but I'm having trouble remembering the names of either of the places.
It would have been in 1974, I think.
Hmm... New Orleans... Well, of all the known gigs BOC played in New Orleans, they always seemed to play at The Warehouse - but these gigs are pretty well known and documented - in fact, there's a great Warehouse site that charts every (currently known) show played there at this url:
No mention of the Moody Blues there though. Also - I don't think that venue has the seating as described so I'm pretty sure we're looking at a different venue for this gig.
I checked a Moody Blues gig list site but could find no trace of any 1970s gigs at all in New Orleans, so they weren't much help, unfortunately:
From what I can tell, looking at their 1974 page, the Moody Blues seemed to go into a three-year long period of stasis starting in Feb 1974, so maybe this gig took place in 1973?
Can anyone else help with placing/dating this show?
At the Warehouse in New Orleans all seats were general admission and they did have floor seating/standing. People stood or sat on the floor. They also had some bleacher seats in the back, right side. There was a bar on the left side. During the actual show most people were standing. That's how I worked my way to the stage.
The ticket price for all concerts during 1974, in New Orleans, were $6.00.
I saw the following mention of this show on a Crack The Sky bulletin board:
Date: Thursday, April 26, 2001
I saw one of Nick Jameson's first shows with Foghat in Cincy at the Summerfest in '74, one of TEN bands to play that day!!!
The show started at 11:00 AM and Styx was the opening band!!! That show also featured Bobby Womack, Mark-Almond (progressive fusion jazz-rock), Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, then Foghat (this was during their Rock and Roll Outlaws tour) middle of the day in 95 degree heat and they smoked!!! (literally)
Then it was Black Oak Arkansas (man I can't believe I remember the line-up too!!!). Jim Dandy to the rescue.
Uriah Heep, man oh man, they played just at that time of day, when the shadows start to get long. Sweet Lorriane, July Morning, Stealin', Look at yourself, The Wizard, Sunrise,and the encore was Tears in my Eyes. It was a great tight set.
Man it takes me back. Then as dusk settled it was Blue Oyster Cult. The highlight was the solo in "7 Screaming Diz-Busters", when the whole band, including the drummer was playing guitars!! (I think Eric Bloom was using a six string bass that has that guitar-like sound).
Then REO Speedwagon as it was just getting dark. All the hits, including "ridin' the storm out", which featured Micheal Murphy on vocald. Kevin Cronin had left the band and Murphy sang at the gig. It's Murphy who sings on the studio version of that song/album. And Kevin wasn't missed because Murphy was from Cincinatti, and it was like a homeboy returning home the hero.
THEN 10PM, 11 hours later, Aerosmith came on and did 2 hours.
By then I was in a drunken, drugged stupor, but I remember the Aerosmith set kinda... they just don't do shows with that many bands anymore...
I dunno what to make of this - so far as I can tell, there was no such event ever... and Milwaukee Summerfest '74 had a completely different vibe to its billing that year, so he can't have been mixing it up with that particular festival...
I've obviously examined the BOC schedules, but I also went through the known Aerosmith, REO, Foghat and Uriah Heep concert schedules and could find no synergy whatsoever with the above report...
What's more, Nick Jameson didn't join the touring line-up of Foghat until the following year, so he couldn't have played with them in 1974 anyway...
All taken with all, I think the ending phrase might be the important key here: "I was in a drunken, drugged stupor"...