February 1973 saw the release of the awesome "Tyranny and Mutation", a record regarded by many as containing some of Blue Oyster Cult's finest compositions - though the Secret Treaties brigade might have something to say about that...

These early History pages will contain - just like the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy - much that is apocryphal and inaccurate - but where it is inaccurate, it aims to be definitively inaccurate, so I'm hoping you, the fans, will take a few moments to set me straight on these inaccuracies or else simply just to add to what's already here.

I'd like to especially thank Paul 5, as well as Peter Nielsen of the excellent thinlizzyguide.com for researching and sending adverts for a number of gigs on this page. Much thanks must go also to Ian Cassetty, Art Liming and Bert Gangl for their invaluable help.

So - have you got anything to contribute to this page? Reviews, missing info, ticket stubs, posters, flyers etc etc - in short: anything!! If so, let me .

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Help!!

Here are two new gigs for the 19th and 20th Jan to add to your lists. The information comes from the Chicago Reader weekly newspaper dated January 19, 1973 and gives the band running order as Glencoe, Blue Oyster Cult, Jo Jo Gunne and Flash headlining.

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:


my first time was '73 - i believe it was just before the release of t&m. i was fourteen, with my buddy and his older brother and some of his friends, head full of purple micro-dot, concert cost four dollars and fifty cents, and we went to the play ground about three times a month back then...

I remember jojo gunne, but not sure if i saw them. we usually arrived fashionably late, due to fantastic parking lot escapades, if you know what i mean. i do remember allen lanier in a black trench coat though. with the shades, he looked like the spy vs. spy guy. also the crossed guitars. in my condition, it was outrageous. no mirrors on the backs yet, just lots of hellacious noise, which was pretty boss at the time. they also played transmaniacon, which was my fave song at the time, having just bought the album in september...


Here's what it said in the 12 Jan 1973 edition of the Chicago Tribune:

The Kinetic Playground, dark this weekend, has scheduled a special Traffic concert Feb 4 to handle the overflow crowds that couldn't get tickets to their Arie Crown concert Feb 5. Other new bookings at the Kinetic, 4812 N. Clark St., are Flash, Blue Oyster Cult, Glencoe, Jan 19-20; BB King, Freddie King, Howlin' Wolf, March 16-17; Procul Harum, April 13; Wishbone Ash, April 14; and Steve Miller and Rick Roberts, April 21. All concerts begin at 8 except the Traffic show, set to start at 10 p.m.

In the 14 Jan 1973 issue of the Chicago Tribune, it gave this listing:

Flash, Glencoe, Blue Oyster Cult, Kinetic Playground, Friday and Saturday at 8.

So there was still no mention of Jo Jo Gunne being on the bill even just five days before the gigs... they must have been a late addition...


Here's the listing from the 18 Jan 1973 edition of "The Daily Iowan":

Flash, Glencoe, Blue Oyster Cult, 8 p.m., Jan 20. Kinetic Playground.

So - no mention of the show on the 19th, and again, no mention of Jo Jo Gunne.

Robbie Cube

I don't remember the dates, but after the first album, BOC headlined at the Kinetic Playground in Chicago with Jo Jo Gunne, Flash and Glencoe. It was sometime in the fall of '72, I believe.

Despite what the advert might say (mentioned above), BOC definitely closed the show the night I saw them, playing after Flash.

So possibly BOC and Flash each played one of the shows as the headliner.

Rick Glover

The date is Jan 27, 1973, the venue is the East Tenn. State Univ. Memorial Gymnasium, in Johnson City Tenn. - price $3.50, reserved, which broke loose when Eric rode the cycle onto the stage!

As far as I know - this was a replacement gig for the cancelled 23 Sept 1972 Kingsport Tenn date.

That was the first time I saw the guys, and it still ranks as one of the best shows ever in my concert history.


Here's a review from the 3 Feb 1973 edition of "Johnson City Press":

The Blue Oyster Cult: Not necessarily Good but Loud
By Roger Hendrix

My Heart is black
And my lips are cold
Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll,
Three thousand Guitars
They seem to crush
My ears will melt
And then my eyes

The lyrics are barely discernible under the heavy, metallic guitar chords and throbbing percussion - but everything is taken care of by 30 giant speaker enclosures standing beside the stage - words do not matter - the Blue Oyster Cult is playing its anthem "Cities on Flame with Rock and Roll."

Decent folks would not like this five-man band of degenerates, playing at mind-bending volume on the campus of our own beloved East Tennessee State University. After all, if the sanctity of ETSU is not beyond such invasions, what is?

If they let these mangy-headed guys come out to play for our boys and girls, who knows what else might happen?

The BOC took a long time to get warmed up last Saturday night, but when it did, the 3000-plus throng in the ETSU gym turned into a mob.

The concert wasn't all that good, though it did have some sublime moments - but you don't really have to be good, if you're loud enough.

And the concert was definitely loud - an unrelenting wall of sound that did not let up through about 75 minutes of pounding, pulsating noise. And music.

There was a difference - the first 35-40 minutes of the performance were just that: noise. Endless, pointless guitar freakouts - flashy, but generally without substance.

But when the group moved into the opening notes of "Cities on Flame," the crowd, relatively lukewarm up to that point, was electrified.

And as BOC picked up the pace, so did the audience, until the walls and floors were quite literally shaking.

The peak - climax is probably a more appropriate word - was reached during a powerful rendition of the Stones' "It's not Easy."

The song is a pretty good one as it stands, but BOC added a touch that brought on an attack of near-hysteria - an incredible drum solo, the likes of which has never been seen in these parts.

Solo is not the right term - trio is more accurate, since lead guitarist Buck Dharma and lead vocalist Eric Bloom joined drummer Albert Bouchard in a mass assault on the specially-assembled drum kit.

The kit had four microphones on it and the sheer sound of three men flailing away at the drums was simply devastating - every head in the place was spinning by the time the display was over.

And the crowd went berserk again when Bouchard tossed his drumsticks into the huddled masses standing in front of the stage.

After that, there wasn't much to do but stroll out into the rarefied East Tennessee night, but the assembled multitude demanded an encore - and the BOC, nearing exhaustion, returned.

"Stairway to the Stars" (the group's own composition, not the moldy standard of many years ago) was the first encore, but the group's fatigue was evident and the song limped a little.

The crowd still wanted more, though, and BOC came back to life with a high-energy version of Steppenwolf's "Born to be Wild." This is the type of hard-driving stuff BOC does best and it ended the concert with a screeching duet in which Dharma and Bloom "dueled" with the frets of their respective guitars, creating some other-worldly sounds.

All through the last four songs, the crowd was on its feet, doing various and sundry insane things, teetering on the brink of bedlam - but control was not lost, which was fortunate for the relative handful of Johnson City's finest who were there. If the crowd had been pushed a little further, it could have been ugly.

But everything ended well - the throng had seen the hairy monster that is a rock concert and had been suitably impressed.

It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. It was good. It was bad.

Larry Reece

The unknown band referred to here as opening for BOC at ETSU in January, 1973 was my band, "Hoover."

We were a local band that had transplanted from Central Ohio to Tennessee in early 1972 with an exceptional lead guitarist that BOC's management OK'd as a last minute fill in. We were influenced by bands like the Stones, Leslie West/Mountain, Mott the Hoople, Led Zep, MC5, etc.

I believe that an incarnation of Free was supposed to open that night, but had to cancel at the last minute. We'd only previously played clubs up to that point in front of a max of 800 people.

The "Hoover" lineup was as follows:

I can remember that some of the songs we did that night were "Roll Over Beethoven" with a tip of the hat to Leslie West's old blues classic, "Bullfrog Blues."

We also did a very powered up version of "Sympathy for the Devil" (long time before Guns) and our version of "Crossroads" as well as a couple of originals.

Since we were transplanted from Ohio to Tennessee our musical tastes were very different from some of our more Southern Rock competitors of the day. The power blues and such we did seemed to strike a chord with a lot of people.

Our final show was in August, 1975 at an outdoor concert in Johnson City in front of several thousand people where we opened for Brownsville Station, White Witch, and Marshall Tucker Band.

I can remember that BOC were so broke they actually borrowed some drumsticks and a couple of special effects from us. They started making decent money shortly thereafter. This is a time period for BOC where Jimmy Page referred to Don Roeser as his "favorite American guitarist."

BOC were really small guys. Our guitarist is 6'5" and I'm 6'3". Don Roeser is probably about 5'4" and the Bouchard brothers are probably about the same.

They started off with the "Red and the Black." I can remember that we used the Jericho Sound system out of Baltimore that night.


Larry refers to the story that was doing the rounds at the time that claimed Buck - supposedly - was Jimmy Page's "favorite American guitarist"... Click here to read a discussion regarding the authenticity of this seemingly apocryphal tale...

Quick Gig Facts
Kenneth Tomasi

I was researching the Hatford Courant Newspaper archives and I came across this "Here & Now" Musical Events listing in the Jan. 27, 1973 issue:

"The Great Organic Peanut Butter Jam, Chunky Style" is what the people at Roots, the Hartford crisis intervention center are calling their upcoming benefit concert.

Headliners are Blue Oyster Cult, a heavy-electric rock band from New York City ; also on the bill will be Liquide Lighte and Patrick Phillip Henry.

The show is Feb. 3 at 7:30 p.m. at the Trinity College field house.

Liquide Lighte and Patrick Phillip Henry were both local acts, with Liquide Lighte being one of the more popular local bands around at the time.


I also found a listing in the 30 Jan 1973 edition of the "The Trinity Tripod":

In the Trinity College Fieldhouse - Roots Incorporated, Hartford's alternative youth counseling center is presenting "The Great Organic Peanut Butter Jam-Chunky Style".

Appearing in concert will be Blue Oyster Cult, Liquid Lite, and Patrick Philip Henry. Local bands-rising talent.

8:00 p.m. - Ghost Shirts Benefit Roots Concert - "Blue Oyster Cult", "Liquide Lighte", "Patrick Philip Henry". Tickets at the door - Admissions $2.00 - Field House.

Quick Gig Facts

This broadcast was the first audio documentation of the triple drum solo and Albert singing "Fingertips Pt 2" afterwards:

Bolle Gregmar's "Morning Final" fanzine offered this contextual information, with a bit of a teaser at the end:

A few months after the release, which was sometime around Christmas of 1972, another radio station in Detroit, (at that time Rock & Roll Capital of the World), WABX-FM was celebrating their 5th Birthday.

On 73-02-04 they hired BOC to play at the party, which was held at a place called The Rooster Tail, a club with a huge glass window wall facing the industrial parts of downtown Detroit.

DJ Mark Parentaeu was the host of the event and recalls that the band was playing so loud, his hair was moving with the chord changes and it scared people to the point that they left the room, so towards the end of the show there is only a tiny brave crowd enduring the loud rock & roll our Cult was bashing them with.

Mark also recalled a local TV station that showed up to film bits of the party. That footage was taped for Channel 62. So far nobody knows whether it included bits of BOC's performance or not. (What a find, should this be the reality!)

This "local TV station" filming thing is very interesting, and actually chimes with something else I've come across - although this one wasn't "Channel 62"...

A while ago, whilst perusing the 24 July 1974 issue of The Detroit Free Press (as one does), I came across the following TV listing - check it out. No, not "Nanny and the Professor" - I am, of course, referring to Channel 19's offering for that 6.30pm slot... they were showing a half-hour long programme called "Patchwork" which featured "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 boggled as to what was shown in the programme. And what was Channel 19?? I asked around...

Joe Bouchard

I never heard of that. News to me.

Lloyd Russell Neil

In 1974, a channel 19 would usually signify a local UHF station or public programming, sounds interesting nonetheless

Jeff Shaver

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 months earlier for the first time. Alas I was also working at the time and no VCR or DVR.

Paul Gittins

... enquiring minds want to know just WHY you were scanning obscure TV listings from 44 years ago....


Some people lead rich, varied and fulfilling lives, and some people spend their spare time browsing countless editions of "Watertown Daily Times" from the 1960s armed only with a cup of Earl Grey and a pack of paracetemol...

I can exclusively reveal that I definitely fall into ONE of those two camps...

Bolle Gregmar

Back when I ran the FanClub, every now and then somebody would write me with claims of this and that, and just like Ralph here, 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...

Jeff Shaver

The WCMU archive vault? I guess, if one indeed exists in Mt. Pleasant MI.


Dunno if the channel numbers have changed since 1974, but this page reckons the PBS version of ch19 was from Delta College:

Jeff Shaver

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.


Seeing that mention of Delta College in the context of a TV filming rang all sorts of bells for me. I've come across a number of reports of a BOC gig there during 1972-73, but never been able to pin it down to an exact date.

But that chronological inexactitude aside, check out this post:

10-12-2009, 12:08 AM

My first concert was Blue Oyster Cult at Delta College Gym (Bay City, Mi area) in 1972-73 (?)- I was 13. The concert was on the local UHF TV station (channel 19) - I thought that all concerts had TV cameras in attendance for a while after that...

I still enjoy Buck Dharma's guitar playing...

Channel 19, eh...? Oh, that's so enticing...

I had previously fretted that there could be some ancient reels of footage lying forgotten on a dusty old shelf down in Delta College's basement slowly but surely, year on year, oxidising away their precious contents...?

And then I saw the TV listing above, and I wonder what the hell did they show in that "Patchwork" show, and where is it now...?

Could it have been the Rooster Tail footage that Bolle referred to above? His source, however, stated that was for "Channel 62", so this Channel 19 broadcast would seem to suggest this TV was show was something different - quite possibly Delta College-related footage...

Damn, this is intriguing... as usual, if you can shed any light on this, please get in touch...

Ian Cassetty

I came across an ad in the February 4, 1973, issue of The Tennesseean for a Quicksilver Messenger Service/BOC concert at the War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville:

Quicksilver, along with Blue Oyster Cult, will appear at the War Memorial Auditorium Saturday Feb 10.

Tickets for the 8 p.m. show are available at Sgt. Pepper's in Rivergate, 1715 Hillsboro Village, Grand Central in Green Hills and Port O'Call in Harding Mall.

Then I found a review of that show in the February 12 issue of the same paper that mentioned BOC's non-appearance because they were "snowbound in South Carolina".

The Charlie Daniels Band and Flat Creek were drafted in to replace BOC, with the final bill being Flat Creek / Charlie Daniels / Quicksilver (headliners).

Despite Setbacks Blues Groups Captivate Audience for 4 Hours
By Jerry Bailey

War Memorial Auditorium dripped with the "blues" Saturday night - for four long hours.

An ill omen surfaced early in the evening when Blue Oyster Cult, one of the featured bands, was snowbound in South Carolina and forced to cancel.

This development disheartened the young audience, many of whom were looking forward to their first encounter with the new group.

Determined to enjoy themselves, the fans' spirits were yet reconciled by assurances that the better known band, Quicksilver Messenger Service, had arrived on schedule. And to boot, promoter Joe Sullivan had found two Nashville groups, Flat Creek and Charlie Daniels Band, to pacify any hard feelings.

But the smiles were short lived when rumors spread that Charlie Daniel's equipment was locked up someplace and he would not appear after all.

In the meantime, hard-working Charlie was backstage making arrangements to share Flat Creek's gear.

When showtime arrived all problems appeared to have been solved.

Flat Creek emerged and began warming up the fans with some hard-hitting boogie and Blues. "Little Brother" Billy Crain stole the show with his versatility, alternating on the drums, flute and slide and rhythm guitars. Things were looking good.

Charlie Daniel's Band then took up where his predecessors had left off. When Charlie sang about how "this fat man's baby done left him," his loneliness was almost contagious. He boogied hard for a while and then softened it up until his voice and guitar were barely audible. This sent the audience into a frenzy, producing shouts of "Hit it, Charlie." and "I can't stand it." Charlies cut loose, and he left a lot of ears numb when he was finished.

As Quicksilver Messenger Service's amplifiers were being hauled onto the stage, Dino Valenti, lead singer with the group, sipped a beer in an incense-filled dressing room.

"If a man don't like to boogie, he shouldn't be in this business," Valenti declared rather forcefully. "You can't put these kids on out there. They've done too much acid. They know when it's real, and they appreciate a man trying to make them feel good.

The other members of Quicksilver, most of them with the group less than three years, sat around the room, saying and doing little. Their names were Greg Elmore, Gary Duncan, Marty David and Charles Schoning.

When the group walked onto the stage a few minutes later, it was apparent Valenti was the undisputed leader. He directed their every movement, stomping his foot when the beat became muddled, gesturing when he wanted an instrument to come on stronger.

His constant dissatisfaction with the public address system was beyond all understanding. Valenti was forever demanding more bass or more treble or more volume.

"I want to cut into these peoples' head, not rub up against them," he yelled during one of the many times he wanted treble.

His confidence and domineering attitude were hypnotic. The fans crowded around the stage, their hands outstretched and their bodies gyrating, Valenti loved it. He slapped their hands, shook them and finally jumped into the audience.

Returning to the stage, he vowed, "I'm going to boogie 'till your butts fall off."

The painfully loud but dynamic sound was not to cease until midnight. The audience was jarred out of its dream-like trance by the announcement that someone had stolen Charlie Daniel's favorite guitar.

Minutes later, as the auditorium was emptying, havoc broke loose. A fuse box at the side of the stage began to burn with the sound of high-voltage electricity, while the auditorium filled with smoke.

Someone produced a fire extinguisher and doused the flames. Four fire trucks pulled up outside. Hardly pausing from his work, a stagehand remarked, "This is one helluva way to end a concert."

NB: if BOC really were "snowbound in South Carolina", then that would indicate a SC gig on 9 Feb 1973 that I'm currently missing... :-(

I've checked the local SC newspapers, and although there was no mention of BOC, unfortunately, they did confirm heavy snow on 9 Feb, so that part checks out...


You'll see on various pages on the internet a date of 11 February 1973 being given as the release date for this record but as that was a Sunday, I have zero faith in that being accurate.

I mean - who releases records on a Sunday? If you're going to make a date up, chose a working weekday at least... Back in the 70s, the standard "record release day" was generally Mondays...

The main source for these entries seems to be wikipedia, but that cites no sources, so again, how much faith can you give that?

One thing that I do know, however, is that it was released after the above Detroit Rooster Tail gig as they mention it's imminent release in their onstage chat, so the release date is going to be around 11 Feb, if not that date specifically.

I don't know how much you can read into it, but just before they play "Wings Wetted Down" on that Detroit broadcast, they announce that the new LP will be "out in 10 days". That's very specific.

If accurate, and depending if he was counting the day of the gig as day 1 or not, that would have the LP coming out on either Tuesday 13 or Wednesday 14 February 1973... the problem being is that neither of those is a Monday.

Maybe they were released on a Monday, but you had to wait until the Tuesday to buy them in the stores...?

Anyway, that's why I'm placing the release of "Tyranny and Mutation" at this point in the timeline.

For more details on this record, please visit the Blue Oyster Cult Songatorium page for this recording...


I'm indebted to Christopher Byrd for sending me a link to the above ticket stub - otherwise I wouldn't have known this gig even existed.

It was originally sent to the "broadwayfillmorealive.org" website by Roxanne Chase - the site is dedicated to helping promote, preserve and revitalize Buffalo's Broadway-Fillmore district - why not check out the site and see if you can make any sort of contribution:

Bob Paxon

I do know that the Rivoli Theater gig did take place and I believe I have some info and links for the opener at that gig, which would be a band called Bethlem Steele.

There is a Facebook page called 'Buffalo/Western NY Bands from the 70's'. I found info on 'Bethlem Steele', who I didn't even know was a local band before that, although I had their 45.

I posted a picture of their (rare and great) 45 and got several replies including the following one from a member of 'Bethlem Steele' - Randy C Ruminski:

"Looking for pics photographer took at Rivoli Theatre in 1973. We played concert with Blue Oyster Cult and other Buffalo Bands band who opened for BOC at the Rivoli."

See my 45 and info on the band:


This is interesting because the stub above says that the support band was a band called "Renaissance". I wonder if Bethlem Steele played before Renaissance or else replaced them?

Bob Paxon

My guess is that it might have been a local "Renaissance" (tho' I never heard of them) not the UK band...

Randy C Ruminski

I performed that day with Bethlem Steele. I was the other Randy in the group. Only with them for 6 months so I have no para from being with them, But I sure would like to see the pics that the photograper took of us. We were dressed in costumes for the concert.

By the way - regarding Renaissance being on the bill - this was an all day event so there were several bands playing that day...

Ian Cassetty

Here's a show review from the February 23, 1973, issue of the Spectrum newspaper of Buffalo University:

Blue Oyster Cult Gives No Razzle, Dazzle, Just Some Fine Rock'n'roll

Well hello again, and fuck you. You may not think that I've heard about your all-night vigil waiting for Grateful Dead tickets, but I have. Do you really think that perhaps this time Jerry Garcia is really going to shave off his beard? I rather doubt it. After all, why shave your beard off for a few thousand people in Buffalo when in a couple of years Schick will give you a nice little bundle to do it for millions of people over the air waves (what's more cosmic?) on prime TV time. With one commercial a whole new world could open up for Jerry. Watch Jerry Garcia get creamed." He could even do Stridex commercials.

But it's okay by me if you want to spend your money. I just wanted to warn you so you wouldn't be disappointed when he ended the concert just as furry as he started. What could be worse than waiting the night for that eventful moment when the cosmis J. lathers up; takes out a gleaming straightedge, and starts his transformation? (Hey, babe, wanna take a walk on the wild side.) Maybe, just maybe, he won't stop with only his face. Haven't the G.D. always been known for their encores. What Cosmic shockwaves as the audience lathers up and joins in... Ah, but we're only dreaming.

Hey Luce!
Eric Bloom, the lead singer of Blue Oyster Cult, has a beard, but you wouldn't be interested in seeing him shave it off, or even dare ask. After all, when he sings "Transmaniacal he can't look like a pretty English rock star. He should look like an angel, and I don't mean the ones from Heaven. I mean the ones that are a lot closer to that other world and it's innkeeper. Eric even tries to speak like old Lucifer. "Hey Luce is that you. I can't see anything." But even old Luce isn't ready for these boys.

To borrow a word from R. Meltzer (the only), B.O.C. is pure crystal. They are the only band to truely by both primitive and sophisticated at the same time. A quality that makes them the mo*t important and powerful (musically speaking) in rock and roll.

These boys are no slight of hand tricksters dealing rock's power and appeal off the bottom of the deck as they dazzle you with their omnibus of charades and theatrics. With B.O.C. every card holds rock's appeal. The cards are all familiar ones, but the game (rock) has never been played this way. Though it may not be a new game, at least it seems a new form, a new dimension. Crystalization occuring perhaps with the knowledge that a rock 'n roll band is theater, and does not use theater.

The Real Thing
A rock 'n roll band using theatrical gimmicks might seem dazzling at first, but it is not long before one's eye starts to wander and notice the occasional card coming off the bottom of the deck and you know you're being cheated. Though you might feel angry, for who doesn'tcheat once in a while to get it up and who doesn't like taking part in a trick, there is no substitute for the real thing - B.O.C. Guided by Sandy Pearlman, who Sunday night was outfitted in a silver jacket which I and a few others with an eye or two for things-would have gladly taken, B.O.C. has R&R in their blood. Not merely students using it intellectually, not primitives blind to it's power, but wizards who have the power and know how to use it. Every conceivable cliche in rock runs through their system but when these cliches surface they do so in contexts never before assumed. Everything is new yet familiar. The world of rock in a different light not merely re-arranged as one does his room.

Enough. Need I say you missed the one concert you should have dragged your ass to see. The only thing missing at that concert was you ... If you paid money to see a G.D. where nothing happens, maybe you'll know better next time.

"You can have my autograph. Think I'll write good health to you."
R. Meltzer, from "Stairway to the Stairs," B.O.C. encore

Read Gulcher by the same R. Meltzer and Body Count by Francine Schwartz.
- My encore - The Boo-ston Rocker


I only know about this gig thanks to research by Heiko Klages, who found the following account in the Tue 27 Feb 1973 edition of WKU's "College Heights Herald":

At Blue Oyster Concert: Crowd Got its Money's Worth
by Scott Johnston

A crowd of about 1,000 got money's worth Thursday night at the National Guard Armory where Black Mountain Band, Boot, and Blue Oyster Cult performed for nearly five hours.

The concert was apparently a financial success, which means that Dyna-Flow Dugal Productions may book similar concerts featuring up-and-coming groups.

As is typical of concerts, this one started a little late. It was worth the wait, though, because Black Mountain Band played a very good set. Starting with a hard rock jam arrangement of "Ode to Billie Jo," the lead-singer/guitarist, demonstrated that they are a rather versatile group.

The showmanship displayed by the guitarist and the organist was not extensive, but it seemed to fit in nicely with the boogie. The crowd like them well enough to demand an encore.

Boot played next and was equally well received by the crowd. Much of their music was original material, which seemed to be an unusual combination of boogie and progressive rock. It provided a nice showcase for the intricate guitar work of both lead guitarists.

Boot employed some theatrics, too, but as with Black Mountain, the emphasis was light. Probably the most interesting part of their performance was the drum solo which featured some sort of electronic drumsticks. The four-man group came back for an encore before leaving to make way for the featured attraction, Blue Oyster Cult.

After an unusually long break, Blue Oyster arrived on stage. The group had its problems, although not all of them could be blamed on the musicians. Early in the show, the P.A. went out. After it had been restored, all of the sound went out. Repeatedly. The result of this was a number of drum solos which eventually became rather tiresome.

By the time they got around to the planned drum solo, it was much too late for that. This one was different, though. It featured Albert Bouchard being assisted by Eric Bloom (lead vocalist and occasional guitarist) and lead guitarist, Buck Dharma.

Blue Oyster displayed quite a bit of versatility and when everything was working, it was a good show. Bloom, slightly reminiscent of Steppenwolf's John Kay, in leather pants and jacket (he explains he is simply a leather freak), planted his feet in front of the microphone and belted out driving vocals on most tunes. When combined with Dharma's intricate guitar passages, the result was some very big songs, some of which Blue Oyster and Columbia Records think will make them stars of the Allman Brothers caliber.

Bloom's tough, almost nasty stage presence (which he may have picked up when the group toured with Alice Cooper last spring) was balanced by Dharma's image as a serious musician who felt that good music was enough.

In fact, the entire group was well balanced. Organist Allen Lanier added some strong segments and played guitar occasionally. At one point, there were three guitars (plus bass) all going at once. Bassman Joseph Bouchard contributed his fair share, too.

The group left the stage after nearly 90 minutes of good music, but once again, the audience wanted more. Blue Oyster Cult came back to finish the evening with (you guessed it) "Born to be Wild."

With everything considered, $3 was not bad at all for the five-hour show.

Quick Gig Facts

Here's the review of this gig that appeared in the 26 Feb 1973 edition of University of Kentucky's "The Kentucky Kernel":

Blue Oyster stirs crowd
by Joel Zakem (Arts Editor)

Even though he is short in stature, Donald (Buck Dharma) has proved he is long in talent. His vibrant guitar led Blue Oyster Cult through two stunning concerts in the Student Center Saturday.

In short, Blue Oyster Cult was the best hard rock band to hit UK in quite a while. The music was good, and there was just enough show to keep it from becoming uninteresting.

It wasn't a one-man show, however. Blue Oyster Cult features five musicians, and each demonstrated their worth.

Besides Dharma, there was Eric Bloom, looking like the ultimate punk rock performer in his black leather, with his vocals and "stun" guitar piercing the songs. The Bouchard brothers, Joe and Albert, on bass and drums respectively, created a strong rhythm section. Allen Lanier played the piano and guitar

Most of the songs came from the Cult's two albums and a lot had a more fiery sound than on the albums. In addition there were several other songs, including Dharma's instrumental showcase. "Buck's Boogie' and a second show encore of "Born to be Wild."

The low spot of the concert was the performance by Charlie Daniels and his band. Their first show was tolerable, but the second show's long jam session used every mediocre blues cliche imaginable. Although a guest appearance by Lexington's Rodney Hatfield provided the best music of Daniels' set, but even Hatfield could not save it.

For a while, I had a couple of posts in the 1972 "Help" section which I am now adding to this gig entry as it seems certain that this was the gig in question:

Kelly Knight

Happened onto your site, and don't know if I can help fill in any blanks, but I first saw Blue Oyster Cult at the University of Kentucky - either the UK Student Center, or Singeltary Center for the Arts, probably between 1970 & 1973?

They had no other band playing. Tickets at UK were less than $5, and I got in free for ushering. I was VERY young, but saw Johnny Winter, Jimmy Buffett, & It's a Beautiful Day @ the same venue (my sister was a student).

I would love to be able to attach some dates to these shows, but can't seem to find any archives or info on the web!

John Hiett

I ran in to your website and scanned the timeline to see if I could find a gig I attended. It was BOC at the University of Kentucky, Student Center Ballroom, Lexington circa 1972.

They played with another band, but I can't remember who (perhaps I will later) (not Alice Cooper).

This was to promote the new album and they definitely played Cities On Flame With Rock & Roll.

I remember the flying V guitar and another early geometric guitar. I sat 10 feet away from the stage on the floor... no seating. Tickets were about $3 US.

Datewise, I know it was a spring or fall semester. Not summer. Unfortunately the ticket stub got lost during a move.

I had a friend on the concert committee and he was responsible for booking them. He is now dead, so I can't pump him for details.


Check out this great list of all the acts who've ever played the Warehouse:


This date was confirmed by the now offline motorcitymusicarchives.com website.

Bert Gangl

According to the Mar 09, 1973, issue of the Detroit Free Press, Lou Reed and BOC were joined by The Rockets.

Lou Reed and Blue Oyster Cult and the Rockets, in concert at 7:30 p.m. Fri. at Ford Aud. Tickets $4-$5-$6, available at the box office.


This date is confirmed by the 17 Mar 1973 issue (page 16) of Billboard in the Google News Archive.

Worthington Slutz

The group opening for BOC was a local cover group, along the lines of Appalachia Mainline or Zachariah, the two biggest groups in that area, though I don't think it was those specific groups. The lead singer was the frizzy haired bassist, and they did a couple of CSN&Y songs, including Ohio.

BOC was touring the Tyranny & Mutation album. Keith Albee was a converted movie theater. Bigger groups (Black Sabbath or Black Oak Arkansas!!!) played at the Memorial Field House. In '73, BOC was definitely fringe, especially in Appalachia. Tickets were probably movie tickets, generic purple, red or yellow stubs with numbers. Otherwise I would have saved them.

I took a girl I had known for a while. She didn't know the songs, she didn't like the songs, and they were too loud! This went on for six or seven tunes until I couldn't stand it any longer. I drove her home, gave her a peck on the cheek, then raced back to the show. I didn't have my ticket stub, but the door bouncers recognized me, laughed and let me back in. Complaining girl or BOC? One had to have priorities.

In a few months, I moved to Los Angeles, and never moved back to Appalachia.

Saw BOC a few years ago in Fort Worth at Caravan Of Dreams, which is well covered in your site.

Best chance at verification will be in the archives of Marshall University newspaper, The Parthenon, though I checked and could not find jack...


This gig was advertised in the 18 Mar 1973 edition of the "The Philadelphia Inquirer" and the 23 Mar 1973 issue of the "Philadelphia Daily News""

Next Sunday, March 25
Good God and Blue Oyster Cult, rock concert; 8.30 P.M. Clothier Hall, Swarthmore College.

We know the gig took place because on Thursday 29 March 1973 the Philadelphia Daily News published the following story under a photo by Roni Hoffman, in which the Swarthmore gig is mentioned:

The Oysters are Coming in a Heavy Metal Chowder
By Jonathan Takiff

As a rule, Heavy Metal Music - the scourge which made Detroit infamous - has to qualify as my least favorite sonic challenge of recent years.

Sombre, mindless and musically vacant stuff, just thinking about the noxious outpourings of groups like Grand Funk or Black Sabbath easily sent shivers up my spine.

Could anyone besides a reds and wine freak truly get into this nonsense?

The world-wide mimicry of the style, as seen and heard in the storm trooper machinations of Amon Duul, Hawkwind and (to a slightly lesser degree) Focus, struck as even more alarming.

Then along comes Blue Oyster Cult, an avowed Heavy Metal contingent from New York, but somehow an entirely different kettle of bivalves.

Poof. This "effete snob" turns an abrupt about-face, begins contemplating the purchase of a leather jacket and a Harley. Is it too late to convert, warden?

The secret of Blue Oyster's Cult's accessibility lies in its intellectualizing of the "eviler than thou" genre. Sure, the music is a crackling frenetic, speedster's delight, but it still maintains a hummability harking back to the old Steppenwolf style.

Blue Oyster Cult lyrics, though themed along the au courant Satantic-Barbaric-Nihilistic trip, are at the same time much more-thick with multi-level imagery, sci-fi analogies, bizarre tongue-in-cheek gibberish.

A song like "I'm on the Lamb But I ain't No Sheep," for instance, simultaneously develops the concepts of flight from political persecution, polar ice symbolism and dog sledding. "I've got a whip in one hand, baby, and a girl or a husky at the leather's end."

Just a hint of avant garde but still juicy, never out of reach.

Blue Oyster Cult made a perfect headline act for the rock and roll concert held at Swarthmore College last weekend.

A proud haven of intellectualism, Swarthmore is also one of the most avid and adventurous promoters of contemporary music - trend predictors with its annual blues and folk festivals, not incidentally the school which gave the world Paul Williams and Crawdaddy, "the first journal to deal seriously with rock as an "art form" (1966).

In poison, the group's a stone cold knock out, with a fancifully menacing stage presence (color it black, white and red), a la the original Doors, and a totally electrifying style. Spear-heading the latter is lead guitarist Donald "Buck Dharma" Roeser - diminutive and unassuming in size but boasting a kingly largesse of fluid inventiveness and machine gun dexterity.

Not surprisingly, some special folk are pulling strings behind the curtains, adding instant legend.

The round bellied chap in the Thor t-shirt, hanging very loose, flipping the lid of his umpteenth beer, is the infamous R. Meltzer High rolling, high living rock writer for Rolling Stone, Cream, etc., avid sports fiend and lyricist for B.O.C. tunes like "Stairway to the Stars" and "She's As Beautiful as a Foot".

Polar opposition to Meltzer is offered in one Sandy Pearlman, a skinny, masked by shades fast talker who dubbed the group with name, writes the bulk of their lyrics, manages the band and co-produces their albums. Pearlman is a reformed rock writer as well, one of the contributors to the original Crawdaddy, which makes the Swarthmore gig something of an indirect homecoming.

"Actually, we all got together at Stony Brook University, a barren wasteland out on the tip of Long Island," spiels Pearlman with a thick N' Yawk twang. "Meltzer and I were students there, 1966-67."

The Blue Oyster Cult nucleus - guitarist Donald Roeser, drummer Albert Bouchard and keyboards man Allen Lanier, were then in a group called the Soft White Underbelly, a much simpler, smoother rocking ensemble.

"Good enough to get a recording contract with Elektra, but not good enough to get its albums released," burps Meltzer. "It wasn't until after the first album was made that Jac Holtzman (Elektra president) realized the lead singer couldn't sing for ----. I think Jac was on THC when they first auditioned. He kept yelling 'we've found our new Morrison, we've found our new Jim.'

"So they threw out that singer, replaced him with their equipment manager, Eric Bloom. The second album they made may be coming out soon, I hear, to cash in on the monumental success of Blue Oyster Cult."

As the Soft White Underbelly the band managed to make it onto one Fillmore East bill and on occasion backed up another Stony Brook resident, a reformed surfer name of Jackson Browne. But the band's reputation in the New York country college circuit left something to be desired.

"All you had to do was announce the band, and the audience would start to boo," laughs Meltzer demonically.

The name "Blue Oyster Cult" comes from a "major work" by Sandy Pearlman, "The Soft Doctrines of Imaginus." "It's going to be a two-record set someday, all about an adventurer who dies and washes up on the shores of New Mexico. The Blue Oysters resurrect him."

The metallic, hell-bent-for-leather input developed out of weekend pilgrimages from Stony Brook to the Village to hear Lou Reed and Nico and John Cale, then performing together as the Velvet Underground. "The Balloon Farm had the greatest light show I ever saw. No film, no projectors of any sorts. All strobes."

Blue Oyster Cult, claims Pearlman, has a similar stunning effect on the psyche of its followers, "The Rolling Stone reviewer listened to the new album" ("Tyranny and Mutation") 100 times in two days. Another guy, a Crawdaddy critic, reviewed just the cover art. He wrote, "this is the greatest album ever made and I've never even listened to it. They didn't print that one."

The Cult shall seek revenge.

The following link indicates that there was a further opener, Musica Orbis, that night:

The group debuted as a septet on April 15, 1973 in Bond Hall on the Swarthmore College campus.

Before their official debut, they opened for jazz-rock Good God and Blue Oyster Cult in Clothier Hall, Swarthmore College in March of 1973.

Terry Hermanson

Just to let you know I was at a Blue Oyster Cult concert April 3rd, 1973 at Bismarck Civic Center, North Dakota (see above photo). I should have a ticket stub some place from that night.

Looking back at my High School Senior Memory book I found the date of April 3rd 1973. They were warm up band for Black Oak Arkansas.

Was first Big time concert (band with record out) that car load of us kids went to see. 150 mile drive one way and we had a great time. BOC stole the show.

I remember even the drummer getting up to play guitar. Wow all five playing guitar at the same time. Also remember the lead singer's sunglasses reflecting lots of lights.

I have seen BOC at least 7 or 8 times over the years. They always have put on a great concert here in North Dakota.


The bit about "even the drummer getting up to play guitar" can't have happened at this show - they hadn't started doing that yet. Terry must be confusing it with a later gig... BOC's main schtick at this time was the three man drum solo...


The above advert first appeared in The Tiger, the student magazine of Clemson University (Clemson S.C.) on 29 March 1973 advertising a previously unknown Steely Dan gig with BOC scheduled for 5 April 1973.

It also appeared on the 5th of April, the day of the gig itself. I then eagerly sought out their next edition to see if there was a review of the gig, but, sadly, there wasn't... The next issue seemed to be an 'end of term' edition, and all they had of relevance was the following enigmatic quote:

It is now time to climb into an ivory tower to pass judgment on the past year's happenings. Herewith are the First Annual Mark Farner Memorial Awards for Various Achievements in Recorded Music.

The Warped Wax award is a tie, going to both Columbia and Capitol Records for steadfastly refusing to even answer our several letters.

The Altamont Award for the most disastrous fiasco goes to our own CDA for the Blue Oyster Cult-Steely Dan concert.

... etc etc

So, no review but that got me wondering - yes, that seemed like it might be a confirmation (of sorts) that the gig actually took place, but what on earth could have happened to have it described the next week as a "fiasco" of Altamont proportions...?

I thought I'd ask around because I've always been rather partial to Steely Dan and the thought that they'd once shared a stage with BOC is naturally an intriguing one...

Buck Dharma

I have no recollection of this at all. Gig probably didn't happen. You would have known about it, right? I'm sure we would have stayed to watch if it had gone off.

Joe Bouchard

No. This show never happened. We were big fans of Steely Dan from the very beginning. If we had played with them we'd have known.

But it never happened. Probably a figment of some agents imagination.


Well, it looks like the "fiasco" was that the bands didn't turn up... and I'm wondering if the line above in the quoted text about Columbia refusing to answer their letters was part of it all...

Oh well... anyway, I've classified this gig as "Cancelled" for now, but if the "fiasco" meant that they were never actually even officially booked in the first place, then maybe it should be classed as a "Phantom"...?


Dick Wallsmith

A buddy of mine was in his 3rd year at Purdue University, in West Lafayette, Indiana and I decided to drop in on him on a rainy fall afternoon in 1972. He's got some jams playing on the stereo and we enhanced our conversation with a little pick-me-up so we were having a good time just jammin' along when a neighboring housemate stopped by to check out what we were doing. He had just been out to the local Record store and had about 3 or 4 new albums to check out, so we started looking at his new stuff and one album was so different and cool that we put it on right away.

It was Blue Oyster Cult, with the fantastic cover drawings that made us wonder what kind of new band they were (Gawlik seemed so mysterious), and where they were from. Well, from the start of Transmaniacon MC we were hooked by the guitar army sound and thought the lyrics were so cool as we cranked the volume up.(Saddam's Boytoy's hogs, no pig at all, you know)

We spent that afternoon listening to this great new record by a band we had no idea of who they were, but we really dug the music. Every song seemed to have it's own killer way of rockin', and by the time Redeemed finished we knew this was a good rockin' record, and band. In fact, Thereof Came The Last Days Of May became THE song of the album for me, it was just so bluesy the way the notes just dripped from Buck's guitar against the beautiful simplicity of the song structure. It wasn't long until that song became one of my alltime favorites, and is to this day.

Onward, we'll fastforward about 6 months to early spring 1973 and the local Sunday newspaper lists the upcoming concerts in Indianapolis. When I see that BOC is coming to town, I immediately tell all my friends about it and make plans to go. The day comes and we get there early enough to get right up close to the stage. We were well prepared for a great show and man did we get it.

By the time they 1st played Indy, their second album, Tyranny & Mutation had came out, so we were treated to a set list from the 2 albums that night, and I mean they pulled out all the stops. I was within 10 feet of Buck (I didn't realize it was the Buck zone yet), and after the full guitar assault through Dizbusters and Hot Rails, they came back with Buck's Boogie and the Red and the Black. Mere words cannot convey the effect and emotion of seeing and hearing this incredible band up close. After the crossed guitars we were all bowing to a new master. They kicked our a** like no other band ever had.

I remember standing there thinking that this was what a Rock & Roll band should look and sound like. Mysterious, intelligent lyrics sang by a leather clad singer, with twin killer guitars that were led by this little a** kicker with ice water in his veins that played so effortlessly. Natural born killers on a rock stage, oh yeah, I was hooked.

I've never been the same since that night, and I've followed them everywhere that I could to see them play. It was a few more years before I got to meet them. I've seen them all over the Midwest and California, in every edition of the band. Thank God they're On Tour Forever.


Do you recall if Wet Willie played that gig? The ads suggested they did, plus a "surprise special guest"...

Dick Wallsmith

Wet Willie didn't play that night as I didnt see them indoors, only once @ an outdoor Festival a year or so later! ... that night was the 1st time I got see JEFF BECK! ... but BOC became my lifelong favorite from that night on!

Also, there wasn't a surprise guest in INDY, but maybe @ other gigs on the Tour! ... ???


Ticket courtesy of LookAtStubs.com and handbill courtesy of Joe Heyen - it's thanks to them that I first heard about this gig!! Cheers!


I came across a listing for this gig in the April 12-18, 1973 edition of Scene Entertainment Weekly":

Rock: Roundtable, 242 Superior, 621-2010.
Fri. Jonathan Edwards, Blue Oyster Cult and Circus,
Sat. Smash,
Sun. Marvin Gardens and 1 Year 2 Sune,
Thurs. Genesis

In that same edition, I noticed the following small preview:

Roundtable Goes Rock: Steeleye Span, Dr. John, Bob Seger at club

Cleveland continues to grow as a major market for national and international rock acts. This city is becoming increasingly important both as a producer of good local bands and as a receptive center for "name" groups.

In addition to four or five major promoters, Cleveland also boasts three clubs which are booking national acts on a weekly basis. The newest such club is The Roundtable, located at 242 Superior.

The Roundtable opens tomorrow night with Johathan Edwards and Blue Oyster Cult as the premier acts for one night only. Local group Circus will open the show.

Edwards's music lies somewhere between Steve Stills and James Taylor. His first hit single, "Sunshine," set the mood for several more of his up-tempo, country-flavored originals which showed up on his second album entitled, HONKY STARDUST COWBOY, on the Capricorn label.

Blue Oyster Cult (Columbia Records) is a hard ass, high-energy-a-la-Detroit rock and roll band. Their stage show bristles and crackles with electricity.

The show will begin at 9 in the 1200 capacity Roundtable.

Other groups slated to appear in the up-coming weeks include Dr. John, Bob Seger, Steeleye Span, Brewer & Shipley and The Whackers.

Saturday and Sunday nights The Roundtable will feature local bands. On Saturday it'll be Smash and on Sunday the bands will be Marvin Gardens and 1 Yere 2 Sune.


I was at this gig in Cleveland at this brand new bar downtown. I had just turned 18 and went with a group of friends who were all super stoked for the show. I had seen local bands for years, but this was my very first taste of a national act. And boy did I get hooked. There was a hot local act called Circus who opened the show. If I recall correctly, their hit single ... "Stop, Wait, and Listen" had just gone National.

But we were all there for the Cult (which is what our group always called them even back then, before another group actually took that name) who followed Circus, as Jonathan Edwards was the headliner... which we all took as a joke. He had one big single out called "Sunshine", but hardly fit in with the other 2 bands, particularly Blue Oyster Cult.

Needless to say, BOC stole the show. I recall them playing just about all of the first album which our group totally loved. Cities on Flame was our favorite, of course, but we were excited with anticipation of hearing every song from that first album. Last Days of May, Transmaniacon MC, Redcap, all stood out as earth shaking. BOC closed with Born to Be Wild... Eric in leather and chains was a mind blower. But Buck really made a big impression on me with his coolness while playing the fastest, yet most melodic lead guitar that I had ever heard.

We stayed a little bit for Jonathan Edwards, but that was a joke after BOC had blown us away. We went in and came out thinking that it was a very strange combination of acts, even being neophytes in the national picture.

Quick Gig Facts

I only know of the existence of this concert as a result of the following ridiculous account in the Sun 15 April 1973 edition of "The Charlotte Observer":

Blue Oyster Subs For Ailing Heep
By Charlie Hanna
Observer Staff Writer

The fact that the Uriah Heep group bowed out of Saturday night's rock concert at Park Center didn't hold back many fans. A spokesman for Kaleidoscope Productions, promoters of the event, said fewer than 100 customers asked for their money back.

Subbing for Heep, who sent their regrets just 24 hours before show time declaring an outbreak of infectious hepititis, was Blue Oyster Cult, a traditional hard rock fivesome sandwiched between the excitingly flavorful McKendree Springs and the gospel-style groover, Billy Preston.

McKendree is perhaps the most honestly musical group to invade a Park Center rock concert in the past several weeks. The only problem with its set was that it was only 50 minutes.

The group left the stage with the capacity crowd calling and clapping for "more... more... more."

Unfortunately, the British quartet saw fit not to come back.

Much of the vibrancy of this group is due to adeptness of Michael Dreyfuss, who flips through jazz, hoedown, rock and even a minuet with stunning confidence and clarity.

Fran McKendree is lead vocalist; Martin Slutsky is lead guitar; and Christopher Bishop is electric bass. Dreyfuss also works electric viola, moog and something called a theremin - you won't find it in the dictionary.

While Dreyfuss and his violin provide a rare and welome zest, McKendree, Slutsky and Bishop are by no means to be short-changed. These guys work together to give a form, coherence and variety that would make any crowd cry for "more."

Bishop offered a bass soliloquy that was bold, fresh and thoughtful. McKendree, besides selling the vocals, even offered a bit of touching flamenco guitar.

The Blue Oyster Cult followed a 30-minute break. It's a precise group, doing well what it does, but then a lot of groups do that.

Preston didn't hit the stage by press time.

Dunno about you, but I could have done with more on McKendree Spring!!!

"The Blue Oyster Cult followed a 30-minute break. It's a precise group, doing well what it does, but then a lot of groups do that."...?

That's it, is it...? That's your review of BOC, is it...? "Doing well what it does"...!!? Christ on a bike!!!

What bollocks!! - 270 words on the bloody openers, a mere 26 on BOC and 8 on the headline act...!!!

Charlie Hanna, you are what can generally be referred to as "a knob of colossal proportions"...

Jim Garner

Reminiscence of 18 April 1973 concert in Richmond, Virginia (tour list here):

Richmond, Virginia in 1973 was dominated by Top 40 radio format, so concert-goers went to hear the band they associated with Whiter Shade of Pale.

Procol Harum followed Blue Oyster Cult. This was a very unfortunate line-up.

Blue Oyster Cult was unheard of to Richmonders. BOC is why I remember this concert for one and only one reason, they played extremely loud for a very long time. It was unbearable. People were walking out of the show.

When Procol Harum finally appeared, my ears were still ringing. I could hardly hear them. The remaining audience was totally drained of energy and just sat quietly. Gary Brooker seemed bothered. The band played a short set and then Gary quickly said 'That's our show,' and they left. I always imagined that PH was pissed [off] at Blue Oyster Cult. I know I was.


I found a mention for this gig in the Sun 15 April 1973 edition of the "The Atlanta Constitution":

In sight Saturday is an all-day concert at Lake Spivey. Argent, Bloodrock, the Blue Oyster Cult and Fanny are the performers. Gates to the park will open at 10 a.m. Music starts at 4 p.m. and is expected to last until 10 p.m.

Argent is a group that was founded by Rod Argent, formerly of the Zombies. He was dissatisfied with the Zombies and left, even though their "Time of the Season," which he made with them was beginning its climb toward 2 million in sales. With him in Argent are guitarist Russ Ballard, drummer Robert Henrit and bass guitarist Jim Rodford.

Bloodrock is well-known to Atlanta audiences, although they have not performed in town since Warren Ham became their lead singer and helped them launch a less diabolical image. Other members are Nick Taylor, guitar; Stevie Hill, keyboards; Rick Cobb, drums; Eddie Grundy, bass.

The Blue Oyster Cult is a five-man group known for bizarre music but they have been praised in Rolling Stone as "one of the best bands America's got." Titles of some of their songs include "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" and "Cities on Flame with Rock'n'Roll."

Fanny, the fourth group scheduled on the show has attracted considerable attention as probably the best of the all-woman rock bands. Al Rudis, the Chicago Sun-Times critic, refers to them as one of the "quality bedrock groups."

Sam Judd

This show is confirmed by the ticket holder and the Hydra guys... ticket holder says Fanny cancelled and Hydra played instead (that's why he scratched out Fanny and wrote in Hydra)... but Hydra guys SWEAR Fanny played on this show!!...


The ad and the ticket above have different (reverse) running orders - the ad implies BOC were on second, whilst the ticket suggests they played third...

Anyone got any clue as to which way it went on the day...?

Terry Knighton

Fanny cancelled and Hydra opened - I was tripping balls, but I do remember it being hotter than hell...

I was soo damn high I think I hallucinated the whole time - Bloodrock played before BOC and Argent closed the show...

I used to smoke dope with Hydra when they played the Hampton High school gym - good times...


I only know about this gig because of the following listing in the 20 April 1973 edition of "The Daily Iowan":

Doobie Bros., Blue Oyster Cult, May 11, Minneapolis Aud.

If anybody can confirm it actually took place, please let me know...


I initially only knew about the possibility of a BOC gig on this date because a flyer for it once popped up on the Sunshine In Facebook Page:

Clearly, however, BOC must have subsequently cancelled at some point because I have a review of the gig from the "Asbury Park Evening Press," printed the day after the show, which shows that the headliner had actually been Black Oak Arkansas.

At this point, I have no clue why BOC fell off the bill but if I had to guess, I'd say that they probably jumped, as the venue had apparently been starting to get a distinctly dodgy reputation.

That FB group page I mentioned above is a good source for charting the reasons behind that reputation. For example, one of their members unearthed a clipping from the 21 Nov 1975 edition of "The Asbury Park Press" which was reporting on the ongoing trials (literally) and tribulations of the club's owner Herbert Fleischer and his rather shady working practices.

Apparently, Fleischer had been working with three main investors, ostensibly to help finance a number of gigs at the club, which in the end did not transpire. The implication seems to have been that the whole thing was somewhat of a scam.

Here's the relevant part of the article (from the 21 Nov 1975 edition of the "Asbury Park Press"):

"The two other investors allegedly defrauded were James J. LoBiondo, 147 Brighton Ave., Long Branch, who invested $3700 in a bogus J. Giles (sic) Band concert Sept 21 1973, and John Anderson, 33 Broad St., Red Bank, who gave Fleischer $5000 on April 30, 1973 for a concert which was supposed to feature the J. Giles Band, the Blue Oyster Cult, and Wishbone Ash."

So, according to the article, Fleischer was paid $5000 on 30 Apr 1973 for a BOC gig and 2 weeks later we get a poster for a BOC/Jo Jo Gunne gig. The timing is interesting, to say the least. No J. Geils or Wishbone Ash mentioned, of course, but maybe this particular BOC poster was produced just to show the investor that Fleischer was making every effort to put the band on...? In that same article, Fleischer is reported as saying he kept trying, but could never book, J Geils as they were always "unavailable".

We know that - following this date - there were two other BOC gigs scheduled for the Sunshine In, which were both subsequently cancelled:

That now makes three gigs that BOC cancelled at this venue... I'm guessing they were possibly concerned about getting their fee...?


This gig was listed on the original BOC schedules but I've never been able to find out anything about it, or confirm if it even happened or not.

If you know, please click the email link on the right...

Tom Schuster

Wow, can't believe how this jogged my memory of seeing boc for the very first time. They had been scheduled to play in Wichita about a month earlier but for some reason they had to cancel that show. The headline band this evening was Alice Cooper doing the Billion Dollar Babies tour which we had been looking forward to seeing for months.

The backup band was supposed to be the flourescent Leech and Eddie but much to our satisisfaction when that announcer came out and said.... Ladies and Gentlemen, I'd like you to welcome from New York City... Blue... Oyster... Cult!

That's when all hell broke loose for about the next hour. We loved em and also had a blast watching Alice do his show;

Just a little sidenote. after Alice was done Myself and a few of my buddies {all around 14 at the time lol) decided to go and try and see alice leaving the arena. Guess who we first saw at the back door loading all there equipment into an old station wagon themselves.. yep boc they even shot the shit with us for a few min until they had to get on there way.

Hope this was the sort of stuff you are looking for. Almost brought a tear to my eye writing this all down, havent thought about this in years. Over the years i think i saw boc about 9 times - they always put on one hell of a show...


Well, now - this is news indeed. I've never heard of BOC supporting Alice on the BDB tour before - as far as I knew, it was Flo and Eddie all the way...

What's more - sickthingsuk.co.uk doesn't have a show listed at all for this date - so if it's accurate - then it's a new gig for them also.

Buck Dharma

We did play a Billion Dollar Babies tour gig, but I don't remember where. Might have been Wichita, but if it's not on Alice Cooper's itinerary, it would seem wrong.

I doubt if we'd be loading our own gear into an old station wagon, we never toured like that. It would have been a small box truck for gear, and Avis cars for the band.


Interestingly enough, I just noticed that alicecooperechive.com has this listed for that date: "Wichita, Kansas?", so that looks like some sort of corroboration, at least...

Stop Press: sickthingsuk.co.uk now lists this date as an Alice gig at this venue, so that's more confirmation.

Joe Bouchard

Yes, I remember that show very well. I sat in the last row of the bleachers, and watched the whole show. I wanted to see how it looked from the audience perspective.

I was disappointed we didn't do more shows on that tour. It looked like great fun!

Tom Schuster

Well just to add a bit of info to my original post, which i see caught the eyes of a few people. BOC was playing that evening as a rescheduled show they had had to cancel about a month or so earlier. for what reason it was canceled i have no idea. they only announced that boc and not flo and eddy was to be alices opening act. im not sure about the schedule after this show but on this enchanted evening we were intoduced to Blue Oyster Cult.

One of them would yell out there name between every song they did so by the time they were done you knew whom had just been playing, expecially after they played cities on flame which was the tune by them still making the rounds on the local radio stations. Like I said before, a very fun evening for a young 14 year old back in the early 70s.

LOL - cant remember for sure but i think the tickets just cost around 15 to 20 bucks wich was high for a concert with only 2 bands. but then alice was in his prime and earned every penny... woot

Sorry Buck, as for the station wagon it could very well have been some roadies claiming to be the band or connected with it. hell there were some very hot looking young ladies crowed around them. Being around 13 or 14 this was probably just us thinking it was the band... lol... ahhh the good old days. Was a hell of a night though.

I first heard of BOC from and album liner from a LP id bought a few months before this. Thats where the label would put out info on there stable of bands and there upcoming releases. Being in the midwest you had to glean your info from whatever you could scrounge.

Around this time Wichita had about 1 big name show a month, which on a 13 year olds allowance was about all I could manage.

Moved to Georgia a few months after this and saw the band a number of times over the years.


OK, I now have some dating evidence - at last!! - to stand all this up - here's a listing from the Fri 11 May 1973 edition of "The Wichita Beacon":

Alice Cooper Here Wednesday
Alice Cooper will appear at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in Henry Levitt Arena, Wichita State University.
Blue Oyster Cult will be Alice Cooper's back-up group in Wichita.

Tickets are available at Sgt Pepper's, Budget Tapes and Records, David's stores and Central Ticket Agency.

This listing shows that it wasn't a completely "last-minute" substitution - it had been "planned" for around a week at least...


Check out this great list of all the acts who've ever played the Warehouse:

Janet Hussain

I think this a concert I went to. I don't remember much except that it was daytime concert, outside (at a speedway?) and I believe that Ritchie Havens was in the lineup. I do know that a riot of some sort broke out pretty close to us so we left before we got caught up in it.

If this is not that particular concert, I know it was within a year or so. If you could send me any information, I would appreciate it.


Opening act was Status Quo - Blue Oyster Cult then Savoy Brown...

We went to see Savoy Brown - not knowing of BOC. Sitting in the bleachers some biker dudes yelled at us "on your feet for BOC"... We haven't sat down yet....

P.S. I was at the BOC show at the Auditorium show with the Rasberry's where they got booed off the stage...


Check out this great site charting the history of the Civic Center (as well as other local venues):

Terry Bartel

Hope you like this BOC memory of a lifetime, for my friends and I, at the Pershing Auditorium in Lincoln, NE. We saw a lot of concerts at this venue, but nothing topped this "trip".

My friends and I we went to a lot of concerts in the late 60's - early 70's, but this show was off the map. We partied with the band on stage and after the show. I've been telling this story over the years, now I can tell it to the world.

A little background. Like many kids of the hippie era, our life after High School revolved around good friends and our shared love of music, beer and psychotropic adventures.

Every week since 1967 my roommates and I we would head down to the local record store and scour the bins for the latest blues and rock gems.

Needless to say over 6 years we had built a massive collection. The Mothers, Captain Beefheart, Pink Floyd, Mountain, Grateful Dead we had them all.

One weekend in 1972 I came home with BOC's newly released first album. I didn't know anything about them, but that cover spoke to me, I had to have it.

When I put it on the turntable jaws dropped and everyone agreed it was sonic nirvana. I played it for my HS buddy when he came back from Vietnam in 1973 and he was crazy about it.

Not being a rock aficionado like most of my friends, the fact he liked it made me smile.

When we got word that BOC was going to play this bill in Lincoln, NE we had to go. I was a graphic artist working at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.

For special shows, I would make T-shirts to wear. Of course there was no doubt I would be making shirts for this show with the later iconic "hook" logo drawn by Bill Gawlik.

Concert day. With gear in hand we trucked off to the show. My friend, our girlfriends and I with our goat sacks of Ripple wine and our pockets of hash.

I honestly don't remember the other bands, but when BOC hit the stage we were in the front rocking it.

Someone on stage spotted us in our shirts and a crew member came down and asked us if we wanted to come onstage. (The sight of our BOC shirts was probably quite a shock). Like, where in the hell did 2 hippies in Podunk Nebraska get those shirts with their logo in 1973?

We had an animal house time on stage and we may have mentioned Nepalese. After the show, the band invited us back to their room to party.

Of course the 4 of us were pumped and we met them at their motel by the Lincoln Airport. By this time, things were cloudy and pulling out details, well you know how that goes.

What I do remember through the fog is the beer, the smoke and the vibe. Just like hanging out with friends and new friends, one and all.

The one memory I do recall is that one of the guys was drawing a mythical creature on paper and I thought the drawing was quite good. I wondered if his artistic interest and imagery tied into the songwriting?

I always see the drummer, as the one who was drawing, but was never 100% certain. To this day I still wonder, was it Albert Bouchard sketching, or was it another band member?


This show took place Thursday, June 7, 1973 at 7:30 pm at the St. Paul Auditorium with Savoy Brown headlining and Manfred Mann opening.

I have an ad from the June 1, 1973 Minnesota Daily, University of Minnesota student newspaper.

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:


This gig is listed in the original BOC.com schedules but I haven't been able to substantiate that date one way or the other...

Now, there is also another St. Louis also listed in those BOC schedules dated 18 Sep, and for that one I currently have anecdotal indications that McKendree Spring also played that show (with Mike Quatro Jam Band).

But, of course, until I get some printed evidence, this show might be the one with McKendree Spring... or not... if anybody out there can help, please get in touch...


I found out this gig was cancelled on a great blog called "It's all the Streets you Crossed", dedicated to documenting NYC's rock'n'roll heritage:

The first ad from 24 May 1973 clearly shows the BOC gig as going ahead, but a week later, the second ad (31 May 1973) clearly shows the gig as cancelled. This was subsequently confirmed in the 7th June issue also.

Although I don't know why the gig was cancelled, it looks like it may only have been a postponement, because, four months later, BOC were drafted into a support slot for Slade on their 6th October Academy gig.


The original BOC schedules had this gig venue listed as "City Auditorium", but then I saw the 10 June 1973 edition of the "The Montgomery Advertiser" which featured this ad:

Rock Concerts
Presents The Biggest Rock Show Ever in Alabama


Savoy BrownWet Willie
Blue Oyster CultCactus
Manfred Man & The Earth Band

Tuesday, June 12
Outdoors at
Rickwood Field - Birmingham
Advance Tickets $5.00 At Gate $6.00

Gates Open at 5:00 - Show at 6:00
Tickets available in Montgomery at Mr Green Jeans

Regarding the actual running order of the five bands, I can't see any reason why it would differ from that of the next night's show in Mobile, so for now, I'm going with that. If you know better, please let me know...


I saw a handbill for this gig which showed that the running order was Blue Oyster Cult, Wet Willie, Manfred Mann and then Savoy Brown as headliner.

However, in November 2016, on gottahaverockandroll.com, a set of contracts for this show came up for auction, with the following info:

Signed contracts, handbills, invoices, receipts, handwritten notes, and bank documents relating to the Savoy Brown, Wet Willie, Blue Oyster Cult and Cactus concert at Mobile Auditorium, Mobile Alabama, June 13, 1973

Only the Wet Willie contract was visible in the image, but you could see a part of the Cactus one below it, and it looked like they were scheduled to go on at 8pm (thus were openers).

If you squint, it's possible to make out that Wet Willie were paid $3000, and there was this addendum:

Wet Willie to receive "Special Guest Star" billing and play just prior to Savoy Brown.

This led me to think Manfred Man must have dropped out of the gig, the other two acts all moved up one place in the running order and Cactus were then drafted in to open.

However, more contracts for this gig have subsequently appeared on ebay, and thus it was possible to get a little more info on this gig.

For a start, BOC were paid $2000 (cheques had to be made out to "American Talent international Ltd", so the band themselves clearly got less than this).

Amongst the paperwork was a hand-written letter presumably by the promoter which included this:

On one stage at The Mobile Municipal Aud. you'll see Savoy Brown plus Blue Oyster Cult plus Cactus plus Manfred Man plus Wet Willie.

Adv tickets are $5 for all 5 bands. Doors open at 5.00, Showtime 6.00, and who knows when it will end.

Also a gigantic jam session at the end of the show with all 5 groups banging away. Don't miss it!

This clearly indicates that Cactus were not a replacement for Manfred Man, after all. Although they were not featured on the flyers, they were always part of a 5-band show.

So unless I hear differently, I'll continue to include Manfred Man in this line-up (the platform-end.co.uk Manfred Man site also has them down as playing this gig...)

The letter also indicates another deficiency in the flyer - the opening and show-time looks like they've been brought forward two hours to allow for the larger line-up.

Quick Gig Facts

Well, I know Deep Purple were headlining this short series of Florida gigs but other than BOC, I don't know who else was on this particular bill (looking at the next two, probably Billy Preston and Savoy Brown for starters)...

Plus, I did hear that there might be four gigs in this mini-tour. If anybody knows for sure, please let me know.


Apparently Billy Preston's band disintegrated mid tour so from 10 June (Milwaukee) onwards he was replaced for the remainder of the Deep Purple dates by ZZ Top, including the dates with BOC.

I'm puzzled about the crossing out of Family on one ticket... might suggest they didn't play?? Although some people say they weren't very good...

As for a 4th date... Deep Purple were due to do a show in Ithaca on the 12th. The show got rained away and a riot erupted, equipment got smashed etc. Purple had to postpone their next gig (Atlanta on the 14th) to the 18th. So there seems no room for a 4th Florida date with BOC. Hope this helps.


Thanks for that.

Be sure to check out Tonny's Deep Purple Ticket Museum site - and if you have any Deep Purple ticket stubs stashed away anywhere, please try and scan or take a digital photo of them and send the jpegs along to the museum for inclusion.

Greg Gunter

OK, I was at this show... have some photos...

Billy Preston cancelled, replaced by ZZ TOP ( No beards then).. also on bill were BOC, Family, Savoy Brown, and of course, Deep Purple...

Was not impressed with Family... other bands were great.

Blackmore smashed his guitar at the end night, threw pieces to the crowd...

Wayne Mereck

The first concert I ever went to was at Tampa Stadium. The line-up was Deep Purple, Blue Oyster Cult, Savoy Brown and Billy Preston.

Unfortunately, Billy cancelled. But on a good note a little band from Texas showed up to open. It was not long after that Tres Hombres was released.


Despite the stories of ZZ Top replacing Billy Preston, if you check out the 15 June 1972 issue of The St Petersburg Independant, you'll see that ZZ Top were included in the line-up along with Billy Preston.

Maybe when he cancelled, it just sounded better for the promoters to say "here's a replacement", when in fact, it was nothing of the sort...

If you examine the ticket, it was originally Family who ZZ Top replaced!!


Here's a report from the 18 June 1973 edition of the The Palm Beach Post:

Fun In the Summertime - First Raceway Concert in 4 Years
by Barbara Levin and James McJunkins

Promoters advertised it as "eight hours of hot fun in the summertime." For the 15,000 spectators at yesterday's rock concert at the Palm Beach International Raceway, a long part of those hot eight hours was spent in their cars, in a massive traffic jam

The concert was the first at the raceway since a three-day rock festival in 1969.

In excess of 30,000 attended that event which resulted in more than 100 arrests and a $34,000 bill of overtime pay for sheriff's deputies.

However, by 8 p.m., yesterday, half-way through the concert, the only problems were traffic, a few gate-crashers and several persons picked up pushing drugs.

Security was provided by 120 off-duty police officers, private security guards and Federal Guard Dogs of Hollywood, whose agents patroled the gates with about 30 German shepherds and Doberman pinschers, according to David Rupp, owner of the speedway.

The bumper-to-bumper traffic was directed by the Highway Patrol.

There wouldn't have been one car on the highway if they (the Highway Patrol) hadn't started a bottle-neck," Rapp fumed, complaining the officers had funneled cars down the wrong entrance to the raceway.

On the way to the concert motorists found the two-lane Bee Line Highway leading to the speedway turned into a four-lane, one-way traffic jam. Cars eventually parked on both sides of the road for two and a half miles east of the main entrance, although Rupp said his main parking lot was empty and there was still space for 2,500 cars.

A spokesman for L&S Productions Inc., the show's promoters, said at 7 p.m. that 9,600 tickets had been sold in advance and about 6,000 were sold at the gates.

"About three people snuck in," he said, "besides the parachutists."

The concert's promoters watched in amazement from the speedway tower as about a dozen parachutists floated toward the fenced-in concert area. Three of them appeared to have hit their target, while the rest ended up in or near the parking lots and a drainage canal.

While the singing groups were working on stage the drug pushers were working in the audience. Ralph Ciccarelli, chief security officer, said his office had to call the Sheriff's Department to pick up several pushers had been apprehended.

"Crowds don't like for you to take pushers," he said. "They were throwing rocks at us and trying to keep us from arresting them. I don't understand that.

The sick and injured were given free medical attention backstage by Switchboard of Miami Inc, a volunteer crisis intervention group. Hundreds of people were treated for ailments such as cuts and bruises and overdoses of alcohol and prescription-type drugs.

Also backstage in a fenced in security area, the rock groups arrived in cars, campers and chauffeured limousines.

Appearing at the concert were Deep Purple, Savoy Brown, Billy Preston and Blue Oyster Cult. Other performers were ZZ Top and New Days Ahead.

Out in front, the lead singer for Blue Oyster Cult told his audience, "We got a little problem here with a broken bass string. But that's all right. It sounds like everyone out there is too too downed out (doped up) to boogie anyway."

Once the string was fixed, he dedicated his next song to "Richard Milhous Nixon on the one-year anniversary of the Watergate.

"It's called 'It's not easy living on your own,' " he said.

Everyone had his own ideas about the concert.

Mark Schulze of Marathon said, "I don't like any of the groups. They aren't too cool. I just like coming to places."

"I didn't like all the traffic," said James Gershon of West Palm Beach. "We had to park our car two miles down the road and walk all the way here. Now, we're too tired to enjoy ourselves."

"We need more toilets," said Ron Hruby of Jupiter. "You have to stand in a long line and by the time you get there you've already gone."

"The concert is fine," said Jerry Batzel, who drove up from Miami with four others. "Next time, I'm going to bring my own beer with me, though. I don't like waiting in line 20 minutes just to buy Pepsi."

But Bruce Reiss of Fort Lauderdale, sitting on a water-cooler, surrounded by empty beer bottles and eating watermelon, came well prepared. "I just came for the friendship and the togetherness, " he said, as he offered both to the nearest unattached female.


The pre-show adverts in the "Detroit Free Press" (17 June and 22 June) all had Captain Beefheart down on this bill as well as Malo. However, it looks like he didn't play:

Joe Bouchard

No Capt. Beefheart at that show as I recall. He must have canceled...

Albert Bouchard

I think it was just us and Carlos Santana's brother (Malo). Beefheart cancelled...


This date was included in the original giglists featured on boc.com.

Bert Gangl

Although BOC and Savoy Brown were sharing tour dates around this time, it appears that BOC was not on the bill at DC's Constitution Hall on Jun 24, 1976.

The evidence for this comes from 25 June 1973 edition of The Washington Post:

A couple of British heavies, Savoy Brown and the Manfred Mann Earth Band, and a local group, Liz Meyer and Friends, played at Constitution Hall last night and the sum total of their efforts was an evening of music that lacked little in variety, quality or loudness.


Here's a report from the 24 June 1973 edition of the Democrat and Chronicle [Rochester NY]:

Savoy to Headline Rock Show
British blues band Savoy Brown will headline a four-act rock show Wednesday at 7.30 p.m. at the Monroe County Fairgrounds that is the last major rock show scheduled in the immediate Rochester area for about five months.

Savoy Brown, one of the British bands devoted to American blues that emerged in the late 1960s, has undergone more personnel changes than nearly any other major act, but still revolves around lead guitarist Kim Simmonds.

Also on the bill are the underground band Blue Oyster Cult, Manfred Mann's Earth Band featuring Man one of the early stars of the British invasion, and David Blue, a veteran of the Dylan days in Greenwich Village.

Tickets are $5 in advance and $5.50 the day of the show.


This has been a difficult one to try and sort out. First of all, 28 June 1973 was down on the original BOC schedules as a Philadelphia gig, but I was able to discount that, leaving this date open once more.

The difficulty dating this gig started when I was previously been alerted that BOC had played these following three PA gigs:

Chris Martin

My 1st BOC show was June 21st 1973 the venue: The Palisades, McKeesport PA. BOC opening for Savoy Brown...


  1. red and the black
  2. od on life
  3. screams
  4. dizbusters
  5. bucks boogie
  6. cities on flame
  7. its not easy

There was no encore.

On June 22 1973, BOC played The White Elephant, White Oak PA as the main act.

June 23rd 1973 was a nite club in Jeanette PA, the name I cant remember but I had a friend attend this show as well as the White Oak show.

On the BOC bootleg from Nov 24th 1987 from Pittsburgh PA Eric Bloom talks about the 21-23 June shows.

The promoter at the time was Rich Engler and these were the 1st shows he ever booked - he later became our areas biggest promoter until he sold to SFX.

I had a conversation over drinks with Buck in the 1990s who thought The Stalk Forest played the Palisades in like 1971, but I think he may have confused this with The Village Barn in Uniontown date which is 30 miles away. Or maybe it did happen.

BOC had quite a following in McKeesport in the 1970s. Cult symbols were always drawn in school and the town. This is before I started doing it...

I seem to remember there being a bad electric storm during the Palisades show... ?

Mike Kolesar

I was thrilled to see the dates for the Palisades in McKeesport, PA (aka Zambo's Concert Hall), the White Elephant in White Oak, and the next night in Jeanette.

I grew up near White Oak/McKeesport and bought my first set of drums at Zambo's music store in the Palisades building in 1972.

I have a friend who attended that show (opening for Savoy Brown) - he would have been 13 years old at the time! I'm not sure what he might recall so many years later, and I've asked him about it in the past.

Zambo's may not have advertised in the Pittsburgh Press, only the McKeesport Daily News. I remember seeing ads in the Want Ads section back in 1971 for the Beach Boys, Traffic, and Ray Charles - I'm not sure if any of those ever took place.

I did make contact with a guy who used to work there (he's been a design engineer for Peavy for many years) but his memory of those times is pretty spotty, whether due to an accident he had, indulgences, or whatever. I'll try to get back in touch and see what more I can learn.

It would be interesting to get a date for SWU playing there. Unfortunately, the Pittsburgh newspapers were on strike and didn't publish for several months from May through August of 1971.


Unfortunately, and at the risk of disappointing Mike, it soon became evident that the dates Chris quoted above couldn't be accurate - not least because BOC played Chattanooga on June 22nd.

So now I was looking for a space in the BOC gig schedules that would allow a three-night run for those McKeesport, White Oak and Jeanette dates. Then I received this info:

Dewey Gurall

This is some info that I've been trying to get for years to solve the mystery of the BOC McKeesport date in '73, with Savoy Brown and David Blue.

Dave Goodrich was my mentor as a rock writer back when I was a teenager in the mid-70s. He is now 72, pretty much "off the grid" - no internet - hell, he doesn't even have cable!

BUT he has every piece that he ever had published, and he still has the review he did for a Pittsburgh mag of the BOC show at the "Palisades". He found the review and the irrefutable date is June 28th, 1973. I realize that conflicts with a date on the website for Philly, but I know Dave, and you can take his info to the bank!

I was actually at the show, and here are a few bits of trivia you may find interesting;

The reason the show is sometimes credited as being at the Palisades, and sometimes at Zambo's is because the building itself is called the Palisades and the ballroom - both before and after a guy named Larry Zambo had his music store there - was called the Palisades. It still is, actually. The music store was adjacent to the ballroom and, when Larry had possession of it and produced shows there, the concert hall was called Zambo's as well. Which was only a year or two, I think. So it's actually correct to say that the show was at Zambo's.

BOC played between opener David Blue, who was a folk-country guy (who is actually an underground legend now because he died young and was pivotal in the development of country-rock) and Savoy Brown. One of the musicians at the time in David Blue's band was Don Felder, a year before he joined The Eagles.

My personal memories of the show - other than that they were fantastic - will always be of the sound going out during the first two attempts at "OD'd on Life Itself" and Eric lighting up a big joint, handing it to the guy in front of me, saying, "pass it on, brother."

Another outstanding snapshot movie in my brain is from the "Lucifer the Light" section of "Dizbusters" - this huge black dude in a pink pinstriped suit and white fedora started dancing in front of the stage like a man possessed. My friend Jim and I thought, "Damn! They conjured him up!" Lol. (Certainly not in any racist way - the guy was just scary, huge, and dancing like a demon!)

Dave doesn't know about the Jeannette date, but we're both reasonably sure that the White Elephant in White Oak, Pa. was the next night. We both remember it that way, but can't find any corroboration.

But June 28th for McKeesport is definite! The band must have had one hell of a good time in my hometown, because at Pittsburgh shows for years afterwards, Eric would always dedicate "Cities on Flame" to McKeesport!


I have also since received the following confirmation of the date from the Savoy Brown Facebook Guy:

June 28, 1973: The Palisades Ballroom (aka Zambu's Music Hall), McKeesport, PA, with Blue Oyster Cult

This date is also confirmed by Bruno Ceriotti on his Savoy Brown gig page.

The upshot is that I'm now reasonably content that the Pallisades gig was on 28 June 1973, but of course, this means that the White Oak can't have been on the next night, because of the following gig entry.


Here's a page with an ad, review and ticket stub for this gig:

Also - here's a link to the Palace Theater giglist on the Rhode Island Rocks site:


Despite the general feeling being that BOC played White Oak the following night after McKeesport, this can't be the case as they were definitely in Providence on that date.

Realistically, then, the most likely date for this gig is the 30th June 1973 because the night after that - July 1st - BOC had left the area and were in Wisconsin.

As Chris Martin confirmed in his earlier post, BOC played this gig as the main act, so it wasn't with Savoy Brown.

Mike Kolesar

The club known as the White Elephant changed names several times, and during the early 70's it was actually known as the Zodiac.

Shows there were advertised pretty consistently in 1972-3 (the time period I checked), but there were no ads listing BOC in all of June 1973 or the second half of June 1972.

The Zodiac mostly had local bands, but I did find an ad for Fanny performing there in August of '73, and I've heard that Trapeze played there at some point.

When I have more time, I'll continue to dig.


Now, this is a difficult one. Originally, although it was reckoned to be the third gig in a trilogy of consecutive PA gigs in June, I'd earlier demoted it to that of being just a "possible" gig but now I've designated this as a potential "phantom" BOC gig. Here's why:

Right from the start, there seems to have been some skepticism about BOC playing here.

Mike Kolesar

The show in Jeanette blows my mind - is it possible (and I don't have any way to verify this) that it was The Red Rooster, which I thought was actually in Greensburg, PA?

Jeanette is a small town heading east on U.S. Rt. 30 from the McKeesport area to Greensburg, which is a much larger town/city.

In the mid/late 60's The Red Rooster had many national acts, including the Yardbirds (with Jimmy Page), Simon & Garfunkel, and the Blues Magoos.

I don't know how long the club was active and newspaper resources for ads are next to non-existent.

Dewey Gurall

As for Jeannette - I had never even known about the existence of this show until the BOC gig list appeared. Jeannette is about another 5 or so miles from where the White Elephant was (I may have the distances slightly off - Chris Martin is probably a better judge than I) and it seems strange that I never knew anyone who had heard of this gig. I can't even imagine what club it could have been at in 73 - I've seen people speculate, but I don't know of any that booked national acts in that township until a few years later. Which doesn't really mean anything, of course - just my two cents worth. I wouldn't be surprised if it ultimately never happened. At the same time, last minute fill-in dates were really common in those days, so...

Chris Martin

Only going on info about the Jeanette PA BOC show from another BOC fan I haven't seen in years his name was Donald Bradley who says that he saw BOC in the summer of 1973 not long after the McKeesport Gig at a niteclub outside, Jeanette PA. Now Jeanette and Greensburg PA are 3 miles apart. The Red Rooster was on Rt 130 between the 2 towns.

This conversation goes back to 8th grade 40 years ago so if this event is true or not who knows. But The Palisades and White Elephant were known facts for that summer.

Our local newspaper The Daily News went out of business 2 years ago. But the Heritage Center in our town has all issues on microfilm for a hourly fee you can look at them.

Hard to remember all this as I was like 11...


Looking at the evidence, nobody seems to have any definite knowledge it ever took place, and, if it did, nobody seems to know where it might have taken place.

Accordingly, that's why I have now designated this one as a potentially "phantom" gig. I don't think it happened.

But, as always, if you know better, please let me know...

Quick Gig Facts

You'll notice that there seem to be more acts individually mentioned on the flyer above than I have accounted for in the band list on the right. As far as I can tell, some of those performers would have been included as part of Mike Bloomfield's "Friends," and so I have gone with the band running order as presented in the review which appeared in the 12 July 1973 issue of "The Bugle American:"

Something New... (?)
by Rob Fixmer

I've witnessed some bad sound systems in my time but Bill Scherer's sound system at Sunday's Something New Under the Sun in Madison's Warner Park deserves special recognition as the all time low fidelity sound massacre of the decade. Never have I heard more fine music buried in distortions and low volume since I threw away my first Sears portable record player. I would suggest that the next time George Sherrick and Mid-Coast Pro. put together a concert with musicians of this calibre, they seek out a competent sound company.

Sonny Wimberly who gave Madison a tight, powerful blues performance at last year's McGovern benefit sounded so terrible that I didn't even recognize him until MC Jim McGinnis mentioned his name after the performance.

Mr. Brown whose music is built around delicately interwoven jazz melodies and subtle tonal variations, fell apart because they could not hear their monitors. Perhaps the finest band in the state, Mr. Brown deserves a better break than they got on Sunday.

Mad John Fever did a high energy trip which sounded silly at low volume. Watching this band gyrate, squirm, jump, spin and kick to clock-radio decibles was somewhat akin to watching Billy Graham raise his supplicating hands to heavan and hiccough.

The New York Rock Ensemble was more successful in dealing with sound problems than the other bands. Michael Kamen's vocals and keyboard mastery led NYR through some spectacular moments, so spectacular in fact that we were all sure that the sound system had been repaired.

Throughout their performance, Kamen repeatedly asked that the sound be turned up, a request which was granted begrudgingly and only a little at a time. By the time New York Rock ended their set with an explosive "More Like the Master" off their Freedomburger album the audience finally felt like they were at a rock concert. I believe I detected whispers to the effect that "It's about time."

Whatever compensations had been made for New York Rock, however, were quickly lost during the equipment transfer which followed their act. By the time Blue Oyster Cult began their set we were back to the same old shit. Blue Oyster Cult performed admirably under the circumstances ending with a twenty minute percussion orgasm which seemed to gather energy of itself and far surpassed anything they've put down on vinyl.

Much of the audience had given up and left by the time Mike Bloomfield and friends began their jam with Curly Cook and Ben Sidran. While the remaining aficianados huddled to the stage, Bloomfield's guitar gained a pleasing level though his voice as well as Sidran's electric piano were all but inaudible. Cook might as well have stayed at home. The played for a grand total of forty minutes and left.

And so passed an afternoon at Warner Park in Madison where the sunshine and the watermelon stand seemed to be the major sensations. Scantily clad bodies and everybody, including Mayor Soglin, drinking beer and throwing frisbees, gave Something New Under the Sun the aura of a misplaced beach party. Well anyway, thanks to WISM for the case of frisbees and, as one member of Mr. Brown summed it all up as adequate, "Thanks to Bill Scherer Sound for nothing!"

If any can confirm that Clyde Stubblefield, Tim Davis, Ben Sidran and Joe Cohen performed individual sets before Sonny Wimberley's Rhythm & Blues Band, please let me know...

Quick Gig Facts
Joel Kolsrud

I've discovered a BOC date not listed in your archives:

Mississippi Valley Music Fair - July 4, 1973, LeClaire Park, Davenport, IA (no newspaper ad) - I'm uncertain who headlined between REO and BOC, although the picture in the newspaper showed REO on stage:

  1. Blue Oyster Cult
  2. REO Speedwagon
  3. Hot Ice
  4. Cactus
  5. Siegel and Schwall
  6. Detroit w/ Rusty Day
  7. Catfish & Crystal
  8. Slaughterhouse
  9. Truth

The event was promoted by Concept Investments Ltd, a local outfit in the Quad Cities area.

I've found more info on the July 4, 1973 Davenport IA "Mississippi Valley Music Fair" event.

It's from "The Daily Iowan" (Iowa City IA), July 5, 1973 and their review of the show has the order of the bands. Woo Hoo!

Running order (from first to last):

  1. Hot Ice
  2. Slaughterhouse
  3. Catfish and Crystal
  4. Truth
  5. The Band Detroit (also just known as "Detroit")
  6. REO Speedwagon
  7. Siegel and Schwall
  8. Cactus
Mark R. Fortman

During the summer of 1973, I attended a multi-group-concert at an outdoor venue in the Quad Cities in Iowa, specifically Davenport, Iowa. It was held in an open area right next to the Mississippi River.

I remember getting there the night before, driving on in in my black '65 Corvette coupe with myself and 2 passengers aboard. We stopped not too far from the stage and proceeded to drink the rest of a case of beer.

When I awoke, it was about 140 degrees F in the car with all the windows up and the sun directly overhead baking us. People were right outside the car just looking at us sleeping. When I awoke the people looking at me scared the hell out of me. I woke my 2 friends up and we figured out that we couldn't move the car as it was in the middle of a sea of people, so we just locked her up and moved toward the stage on foot.

I remember BOC, REO Speedwagon, ZZ Top (cancelled, I think) and 1 or 2 others I can't remember. It was on a Sunday, I'm pretty sure.

It was really hot with no shade... My buddy had sandals on and got his feet terribly sunburned. I know that it went down, cause I was there.

That was the only summer I owned the Corvette, so I'm sure of the year, too.

Please try to have this corrected, if you can. I sure wish I could provide more specifics, but alas, I cannot. I will try to find more data on this concert.


Well, thanks to Joel, I think we now have a date to pin on this one! Cheers!

Jim Rowland

I would really like to find more info about this concert. I was there, but I was tripping on LSD.

The fairgrounds were cleared with bulldozers the night before the festival... then it rained. The whole area turned into a sea of muddy water with mud pathways twisting through the crowd.

Just before Cactus was scheduled to perform, an announcement was made that the city had cut the power. That was the end of the event.

I think Blue Oyster Cult was scheduled to play after Cactus, but I can't remember for sure. I wish someone had photos from this event.

I had a blast trudging through the puddles. My friend's mother saw me on the news and was not impressed.


I only know about this gig due to the following mention in the Sun 01 July 1973 edition of the "The News and Observer" [Raleigh NC]:

Rock Concert - Edgar Winter and Blue Oyster Cult will perform in concert Thursday at 8 p.m. at Cumberland County Memorial Auditorium/Arena Fayetteville.

Quick Gig Facts

Here's the listing for this show from the 8 July 1973 edition of the "Detroit Free Press":

Sherwood Forest hosts Blue Oyster Cult, Detroit with Rusty Day, Frut and others, noon till midnight Wed. Adm. $5. Located in Davison Mich.

I found the following notes about this show on the blog of Peter Cavanaugh, who was the promoter.

Sherwood Forest concerts had continued on a monthly basis in the Spring and our first "Wild Wednesday" was scheduled for June 20th with Michigan bands and "Sugarloaf" of "Green-Eyed Lady" fame.

The second "Wild Wednesday" of 1973 on July 11th offered a special treat. "Blue Oyster Cult" was headlining and had arrived in Flint the prior evening, but REO Speedwagon contacted me the morning of the event and explained a horrid dilemma had arisen. They were in a major bind due to a recording deadline which had not been met and open studio time had become severely limited. I agreed to the cancellation in return for a rescheduled date and because of an outstanding substitution offered by their booking agency.

Joe Walsh had left the James Gang and had just completed his first studio album as a solo artist. He wanted to try his new band and material out without advance advertising at a venue not yet selected. He had been contacted and had agreed that circumstances presented a mutual opportunity.

For many "Wild Wednesday" enthusiasts, the event had become more the attraction than individual bands, as long as music quality was maintained.

The sum was greater than its parts. It seemed half of those in arriving cars would ask our gate-keeper, after buying their admission tickets, "Who's playin'?"

I announced that REO had been unfortunately detained, but had been rescheduled for the following "Wild Wednesday". There were a few murmurs of muffled disappointment, but a great roar of approval went up with my introduction of a "super surprise". Joe Walsh took the stage and premiered his "Barnstorming" album for the first time before a live audience. He closed with an extended, fifteen-minute version of "Rocky Mountain Way" which all present saluted with tumultuous cheering and applause. Such moments were always magic, but darkness lurked on the horizon.

Peter Cavanaugh seems to have been a pretty important figure in the area in terms of music promotion and you can read more about his exploits here:

BTW: The venue has its own Facebook page and in a thread on this gig I was amused to read the following account:

John A Symons:
Great concert except for Rusty Day & Detroit. Boring!! I remember a comment Rusty made about the crowd looking like a painting because nobody was dancing. I thought to myself there was a lot of dancing before you got on the stage.

Fri 13 Jul
45 Release (U.S.): "Hot Rails To Hell" b/w "7 Screaming Diz-Busters" (Columbia 4-45879) single

I got this date from one of those "on this date (x number of years ago)" sites.

Is it accurate? Buggered if I know...

Quick Gig Facts

If you check out the page detail on the schedule above, you'll see that the original billing for the 16 July show was BOC with "Mason Proffit" in support. This was always going to be the original line-up - in the 9 June 1973 issue of Cash Box, it confirmed that:

With summer just around the corner, it's time once again for another season of the Schaefer Central Park Music Festival produced by Ron Delsener. Show times are at 7 and 9:30 unless otherwise indicated.

Here's this year's schedule:
(16) -Blue Oyster Cult/Mason Proffit

But if you look at Mike's advert, also above, you'll see they had the featured support down as Andy Pratt!

However, the Billboard review (18 Aug 1973) below only mentions Claudia Lennear ("Brown Sugar/Lady Grinning Soul") & "Bump City".


Schaefer Festival, Central Park, New York
Sam Sutherland

Central Park was the first New York point of entry for what is clearly the ultimate cult band: Blue Oyster Cult, critics' choice in several respects, having copped remarkable kudos for their first two LPs that consistently professed schizoid awe at both the sheer, lacerating power of their playing and the intellectual/anti-intellectual intricacies of lyrics contributed by Sandy Pearlman and, less prominently, nefarious R. Meltzer, rock writers whose punk dadaism is entirely appropriate for B.O.C. material.

All of this, and they're still - again, ultimate cult status - a decidedly elite corps, an acquired taste despite the electronic primal force of their definitive heavy metal style. Still, the secret may be out. The Wollman rink was just about full, and that crowd clearly knew what they'd come for and weren't at all disappointed. They were on their feet by the first chorus of the first tune.

Heavy metal music at its most intense, the Cult's style is unforgiving to its buzz-saw tonalities and the hyper-drive interplay between guitarists Buck Dharma and Eric Bloom, who handles most of the vocals in a menacing, rasping style that rides ruthlessly atop his stun guitar. The band has a crisp dynamic sense. But that sense covers a range from Deafening to Sonic Lobotomizing, which certainly separates the angry rockers from the recently-mellowed ones.

The final test is the material itself, however: vicious, slicing riffs that roll under messages like "O.D.'ed on Life Itself" and their single, "Hot Rails To Hell." Heavy metal is a personal taste. But those who crave apocalyptic power surges will clearly find the Blue Oyster Cult unsurpassed in that realm.

Claudia Lennear, Warner Bros, artist, is a powerful vocalist who simply lacks the presence and individuality that marks a solid solo performer.

Miss Lennear's performance, supported by the crisp but unimaginative r&b stylings of Bump City, drew heavily from familiar recent hits, never succeeding in approaching the character of the original.

So where does "Andy Pratt" fit into this equation? I'd never heard of him before - I looked him up on wiki, and he signed to Columbia in 1973, so that fits with him being on the bill, at least.

So I was a bit confused - did he play, maybe as an opener, or didn't he? Fortunately, the following review by that appeared in the 28 July 1973 issue of the NME sheds some light on this matter:

Blue Oyster - The New Madness

Dan Nooger - New York

The Blue Oyster Cult, the New York critics' favourite apostles of violence and rock'n'roll madness (several of the group as well as their producer Sandy Pearlman are former critics) made a rare appearance in their hometown at one of Schaefer Beer's Central Park events,

The Cult are the ultimate punk fantasy band, all black leather and bloodied banners, and absolutely everybody turned out for them and sat patiently, if unenthusiastically. through Claudia Lennear's set of competent, if unexciting soul.

She was a last-minute substitution for Andy Pratt, which was probably just as well as the crowd would have eaten him alive.

The Cult itself, dressed in black leather except lead guitarist Buck Dharma, who opted for a white jeans suit, took the stage and immediately crunched into "The Red and The Black," the rousing theme song of their latest album "Tyranny and Mutation" (CBS) superbly tight hard rock.

"O.D.'d on Life Itself," which is hung around those archetypal Chuck Berry/T.Rex progressions, followed, moving along nicely until guitarist Eric Bloom suddenly intoned a burst of honeyed lyrics.

Bloom and bassist Joe Bouchard shared lead vocals on the group's new single "Hot Rails to Hell," switching off like Lou Reed and John Cale on "Lady Godiva's Operation," while the rhythm section slammed along like an express train to outer darkness.

"Seven Screaming Dizbusters" gave each member of the group a chance to solo - horror movie shadings from a very futuristic horror - while Bloom improvised a sermon on light from and below the ground in an Arthur Brown meets Steve Marriott via Leon Russell croak.

Dharma dominated the very Beckish "Buck's Boogie," throwing in a quote from "You Can't Do That" and building massive tone clusters atop it.

The Stones' "It's Not Easy" received a superheavy workout culminating in a drum "solo" by drummer Al Bouchard, with Bloom and Dharma bashing away on nearby floor toms. Suddenly Bouchard was tossing out drumsticks to the crowd as liberally as Alice Cooper dispenses posters, at the end of his extravaganzas.

The group encored with the old Yardbirds' favourite "I Ain't Got You" and their own eerie "Before The Kiss, A Redcap."

In a contemporary music scene mired in triviality and pretension, the BOC are the real thing - not exactly skull-bashing music, though, more inclined towards sucking the marrow out of bones before they're dead.

So, Andy Pratt was a late cancellation and Claudia Lennear was a late replacement. Interestingly, the wiki list of Schaefer gigs doesn't mention Claudia Lennear - only BOC and "Andy Pratt":

By the way - regarding "Bump City - I did wonder if they were a separate performing entity or were they there simply as Claudia's back-up band? I found some information in the comments on a "Funk My Soul" webpage discussing her "Phew" LP from 1973:

Posted at 22:12h, 20 September 2010

I played drums for Claudia in a "back-up" band we had in Hollywood in 1973 called Bump City. We then went on the road for about 15 dates... which included opening for Blue Oyster Cult at the Schaeffer Beer Festival in NYC - Central Park on my 21st Birthday.

Got to sneak into a club with Claudia in NYC - Max's Kansas City and saw Bruce Springsteen and Bob Marley and the Whalers on the same stage... GREAT night.

We then played up the East Coast winding up in her home town of Providence, Rhode Island where soon after we had no more gigs.

That was the last we saw of Claudia. Hope she is doing well.


My first BOC gig: Schaeffer Festival Wollman Skating Rink Central Park New York City

Bleecher Seats were $1.50, "Orchestra" (or where the ice would be...) $2.50.

Shows were every Mon Weds Fri and Sat throughout the summer.

I guess it was for Tyranny and Mutation, The Red and the Black was kick ass! So I grabbed that for my YouTube channel title...

Quick Gig Facts
David Morgan

The show was advertised as "The Festival By The Sea", a bit of Bull*t since the site was not within sight of the sea (a couple of miles away).

Stage was a couple of trailer beds pulled up next to each other. Festival site was the old, abandoned "Pungo Airstrip" a former Navy and then Coast Guard air strip. Site is still in existence today, used by a "hot rod" (auto) club and the current site of the "Pungo Strawberry Festival".

The day of the festival was brutally hot, sunny with high humidity (Typical Tidewater Virginia summer weather).

The festival was poorly organized. The concert goers sat on a concrete runway in the blazing sun all day with no shade available. Hundreds of people were treated for heat exhaustion and assorted drug overdoses.

The performances were generally good considering the conditions. ZZ Top and BOC stole the show. Both acts were largely unknown in Southside VA.

In 1973 BOC's set was excellent if a bit brief (40-50 min.) I recall an announcer (BOC's manager?) informing the crowd that BOC would be unable to perform an encore due to the heat.

Security was over zealous with rented off-duty police, some with guard dogs and a large quantity of undercover narcotics officers who kept busy all day arresting pot smokers.

I'm still searching for more concrete info on this show (date, posters, newspaper articles, etc) If/when I find more info I'll pass it along.

Karen Banks

I was there - just another "hot" fan. This concert changed my life. Was visiting Virginia Beach after the July 4th weekend and ended up with a bunch of partiers. I fell in love - We were smack dab in the middle of everyone.

I went back home to Morgantown, WV - divorced my husband, quit my job, bought a car and moved. I truly think that if we hadn't had that day in the sun - none of the "magic" would have been there. What information can you send me on this concert?

Zelma Cohen

Hey, I was there. I was quite young and had the T-Shirt and poster from that concert for years, but it disappeared only a few years ago.

It was an awesome concert. I can't remember if BOC played that day. I saw them a few times after that, so I'm not sure. It was crazy, hot and lots and lots of drugs everywhere.

I was only 14 and left there alone, saw a couple of OD's and lots of other mind opening experiences.

I do remember Savoy Brown, Sabastian and ZZ Top playing. ZZTOP, I believe was the last show. Lots of pink faces at the end of the day due to the sun.

Regarding the date, it had to have been July 4th of 1973, but will double check with my sister who "dropped me off" there. I was 14 and remember telling everyone I was 16. I'm not sure why I thought that would make a difference. I seem to remember Savoy Brown breaking up briefly not long after that concert, but they got back together the next year.

From what I can see, it appears all of the bands were all over the place in 73, but from what I can tell, they were all in the area of Virginia Beach in July of 1973. Not so in 1972 or 1974.

I also remember it being a time where many of our guys were getting back from Vietnam. The base was full of military GI's getting blasted out of their minds to forget what they just experienced. Sad how history repeats itself.


Karen Banks mentioned she was visiting Virginia Beach after the July 4th weekend... now, July 4 was on a Wednesday that year, so I don't know if a "July 4th weekend" would come before or after July 4 if it falls on a weekday... I'd tend to think after... in which case, if she's right, then that'd suggest this gig maybe took place a little bit later than 4 July...

Callen Phillips

I'm 50 years old, at work, feeling nostalgic, and thought I'd search for information on the Pungo Airstrip concert.

I was there and to this day, I remember the heat and sitting on that hot concrete runway. I remember organizers were passing out salt tablets during the concert.

I thought I remembered one of the guitarists for ZZ Top passing out and going face first on the stage, just for a moment. I think ZZ Top was the headliner. They had 3 albums out by then and BOC had one, I think.

We went to see Bloodrock as much as anyone else. The actual date? No idea.

By the way, I was the stoned/drunk guy stumbling around my seating area, stepping onto and crushing everyone's Styrofoam coolers.

David Morgan

The following website - LookAtStubs.com - lists the date of this show as July 21.

Regarding the headliner, I'm pretty sure Savoy Brown was the headliner. ZZ Top performed earlier in the day and Savoy Brown went on stage as the sun was setting. It's possible that ZZ Top was advertised as the headliner, but they went on before Savoy Brown.


I was there. Me and ALL my party-animal Navy buddies - stoned to the gills - nothing new for us.

I'm sure we "saw" all of you there. We were probably responsible for Karen's post-concert action.

Check out http://www.ussmullinnix.org/1973Music.html - that says it all about me, my friends, and 1973!


This show at Pungo Airstrip in Virginia Beach, VA was called "Concert by the Sea" not Festival. I was at this show.

BOC played midway through the festival, either just before or after ZZ Top. As one person wrote, those 2 acts were the highlights of the concert. It was miserably hot. One of ZZ Tops players did pass out. Savoy Brown was the headliner and closed the show.

I love the website. The stories from the Virginia show bought back a lot of good memories. Thanks for letting me share mine.

Sergeant Mac

It was advertised as a mini Woodstock with 9 bands. The headliner was Savoy Brown and they played last. The 9 bands were Black Oak Arkansas, Bloodrock, John Sebastian, BOC, ZZ Top,?,?,?, (can't remember the other 3) and Savoy Brown.

Dusty Hill (Bass) keeled over face first into the stage during one of their jams. Billy and Frank just kept jamming (very professional) and the roadies pulled Dusty behind the cabinets (looked like white Marshall heads and speaker cabinets but had a logo like Oasis or something like that). After a few minutes they got Dusty back up and he went back out front and kept playing. They continued playing for quite a while after.

BOC pulled out some stools and sat on them when they played. Savoy Brown played last and convinced me that Kim Simmonds was the second best slide guitarist that I had seen to that point (Duane Allman being no.1).

I was in the Air Force at the time due to the draft and my draft number being 1. I was stationed at a radar site on the Blue Ridge Parkway just north of Bedford VA.

We left Roanoke VA at 11:00pm Friday night July 20 in a VW micro bus (Loaded with Hippies) and got to Va Beach early Sat. morning (about 5:00am). We were told that the concert was to be right on the sandy beach. They lied.

They had speaker towers on each side of the stage and as the day went on we followed shadows around to get relief from the sun. Several of us had one large blister across our foreheads from that day.

PS: I had a friend who went with us who had a t-shirt for years that had the date and a list of the bands. The t-shirt finally turned back to dust and I can't remember all 9 bands. I'm sure of the ones I listed but I am unsure of the rest. Even with the help of your list on the right, I can't positively say yes to any of the others listed. I do know that Foghat was not there as I was a large Savoy Brown fan and Foghat contained a couple of former Savoy Brown band mates. I would have loved to see them at the same concert.

David Morgan

Regarding Sergeant Mac's note: I am positive that Black Oak Arkansas was NOT on the bill. Everything else he states seems to follow my recollections of the event.

I do remember Dusty Hill passing out on stage; face down in his ten gallon cowboy hat.


Sam Judd tells of another ZZ Top gig with BOC (29 June 1975) where Dusty Hill again hit the deck!! Was this a regular thing with this guy or was it just BOC gigs he had a problem with?

The NEF_arious N2

July 21, 73, Pungo, Va - I was there – it was wicked hot!

BOC and ZZ Top are the only ones I remember, been a fan of both ever since. (actually ended up dating Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser' brother-in-law in CA years later and got to meet them all at a concert with Ted Nugent, AC/DC and others in Oakland Stadium in '78)

Guitarist for ZZ Top did pass out from heat because they kept playing encores for the crowd waiting for the headliners who were really late.

I see from the posts it was Savoy Brown – I don't remember them, but hey, it's amazing I remembered this much...


Thanks to Ron Fritts sending the above review, I now know this gig indeed took place on 21 July 1973 and that the eight bands on the bill were:


I only know about this gig because a used stub for it appeared on eBay [December 2017].

It's becoming increasingly clear that more gigs were played during July 1973 than I currently know about...

Bob Mutascio

I was at this concert. Blue Oyster Cult opened for Aerosmith, and though I don't remember much about this show, I do remember that BOC did one of the most amazing percussion songs I ever heard, where everyone in the band was up front on the stage, playing some kind of drum. It was momentous.

Sorry I can't remember more, but I was on mescaline at the time.

Peter Detmold

On July 28th, 1973 at Suffolk Downs in Boston, despite what one concertgoer recalls, (he WAS admittedly on mescaline,.....) Aerosmith was not on the bill and did not play.

I was there (and drug free). BOC played the middle slot between the Alessi Brothers, (maybe billed as Barnaby Bye?) who opened the show, and Savoy Brown who headlined.

I wouldn't have been there except Savoy Brown was playing and I followed them around back then.

I was also at the Palace Theater Show in Providence the previous month - you've got that one right - David Blue, BOC and Savoy Brown.

Bobby Alessi

Yes, that was Barnaby Bye opening that show. I remember it well.

While we were in town we were taken to some of the better recording studios in Boston to see if we had any interest in doing some recording there. It was then that we met Michael Kamen for the first time.

I also remember it was a beautiful summer day and the race way was packed. We opened with "She Was Pleased" We were also trying some new Ovation acoustic/electric guitars (the ones with the round plastic backs.)

I remember we kept getting a feed back problem with them but the show was fun for us. It's always fun playing for a big crowd.

George Hartley

This is not likely to be the best contribution to your page, but...

This was my first concert ever. I had recently turned 16 and was doing acid. My friend and I 'split' the tab, but it turned out that you can't split microdot acid and so I got the whole hit. That means that, like the guy on mescaline, I also have no specific memory of the show other than that it was fantastic (at least I remember who played and that BOC really rocked that night) and that it ended later than we had planned on. We missed the last Trailways bus back to our hometown.


I originally had been given anecdotal evidence of a 1972 BOC gig at the Illiana Speedway, Schererville, Indiana, but it now seems pretty certain that this gig indeed took place in 1973.

James Harding

I was at the Illiana Speedway gig, which was in Schereville, Indiana. The only info I can add is that it was M.C.'d/"Hosted" by Bob "The Bear" Hite from Canned Heat, who were in town to do a gig at the Sherwood Club in Schereville.

I have ZERO recollection of the exact date or any other bands that were on the bill... and I'd LOVE to find out. There was only one event of this kind, ever, at the Illiana Speedway. (I lived only a few miles away from it).

I remember there were quite a few bands on the bill... enough to keep the music going through the day and into the evening. I think they were mostly local groups from the Northwest Indiana area. BOC was the headline act. I don't recall the date, but it WAS in the summer (I remember that the weather was nice and warm for sitting outside and getting "baked", as it were.

Schererville was a rather small, undeveloped town at that time, and were VERY few "venues" at which to play. In fact, Illiana Speedway and the Sherwood Club were about the only venues at the time that COULD or WOULD host rock bands.

The closest other venue in Northwest Indiana would have been the Hammond Civic Center in Hammond, Indiana (midway between Schererville and Chicago). LOTS and LOTS of big-name rock bands appeared there during this period.

Tom Mulhern

I was definitely at the Illiana Speedway gig and the date was on July 29, 1973. I remember its date exactly because (1) I was with my new girlfriend who I started dating two weeks earlier (we've since married), and (2) it was a good friend's birthday. He was supposed to meet us there, but flipped his van on the way to the show and didn't get to see it. Nobody was hurt, luckily.

Anyway, the date is ingrained as July 29, 1973, and I also recall it was, oddly, on a Sunday (which matches a calendar I looked up online).

BOC didn't come on until about 1AM (making it early on the 30th). Before them were the Mike Quattro Band. Earlier bands are hard for me to remember, although Son of Cactus was one of them. The others were third-tier or breaking bands. BOC was definitely the headliner for that festival, which lasted all of one day.

I don't think they issued ticket stubs. It was a pretty loose event...pay your admission and go in. If there were any flyers, I never saw them, and I'm virtually certain there were no handbills.

I believe I found out about the gig from Hegewisch Records, which was an off-the-mainstream shop on the southern edge of Chicago. They used to get bands like Wishbone Ash to do in-store promos, and it was the cool place to buy records, especially imports.


The only indication that I've found of a gig here on this date was a box ad in the 29 Jul 1973 edition of "The Evansville Courier":

Savoy Brown
Blue Oyster Cult

Thursday Aug 2, 8 p.m.
Evansville Coliseum, 400 Court St.

Tickets $4.50 in advance, $5 day of show

on sale at Weinbach Pharmacy
Weinbach & Division
Folz City, 322 NW 3rd St.
Owensboro Wax Works
Walk's Red Hanger Shop


OK - I originally had this gig down as:

Then I got the following email with very opposing info for a gig on this date:

Mary Stewart

I seem to remember that on or about Aug 03, 1973 that BOC played the Charlotte Coliseum in Charlotte, NC in support of J. Geils Band. I was definitely there in person sometime late in the summer.

It's very vivid to me because it would have been my first ever BOC concert, and hugely anticipated at the time.


I have no reason to doubt that this Tucson gig didn't take place on this date - despite the above email, which itself goes from the very specific (3rd Aug) to the rather vague "sometime late in the summer"...

As usual, if anyone has info on either gig, either Tucson or Charlotte, please let me know...


8/3/73 BOC warmed the J. Geils band up in Charlotte NC @ the Coliseum. Mary Stewart confirms this also. No way are [we] I wrong.

I remember them all soloing during Diz Busters like the 3rd song thinking whats up with this.


OK - that's a couple of votes now designating 3rd Aug as Charlotte Coliseum in support of the J. Geils Band, and not Tucson after all...

My original thoughts were that a Charlotte gig on this date would be a bit of a surprise as BOC were - supposedly - touring the AZ/TX/CO area at the time - and NC is a fair distance away from that region...

Now, clearly BOC did play Charlotte supporting J. Geils around this time - I just need to pin the date for sure to 3rd August, if that's what it was, so obviously I'd appreciate hearing from anyone with any more info on this Charlotte gig...

Or the possibly mythical Tucson gig also!! :-)


Here's the stub from that J. Geils Band gig at Charlotte Coliseum that shows the date was 3rd Aug...

Keith McGee

I was at the august 73 show in charlotte. The opening band was Brownsville Station, then BOC, then J Geils Band.

Bob Stewart

August 3rd, 1973, Charlotte Coliseum, opening for the J. Geils Band.

They were still doing the drum solo with help thing, 5 guitars not having been introduced.


OK - I give in - Charlotte it is, then...

Joe Schafbuch

My second concert ever. Zeppelin played the Coliseum earlier in the year (my first).

Savoy Brown opened, followed by BOC, followed by the headliner ZZ Top.

Nice site.


This gig was in the original BOC schedules but I was never able to find any evidence to support it as having taken place...

Then I came across a poster for a gig on this date at "Cessna Stadium, Wichita State University" KS and it became evident that there was no Dallas gig on 5th Aug - well, not for BOC, at least...


I only know about this gig as a result of a poster for it which appeared on eBay...

Bolle Gregmar

73-07-08: Alpine Arena, Pittsburgh PA Setlist:

  1. The Red & The Black
  2. O.D.'d On Life Itself
  3. Screams
  4. Seven Screaming Diz-Busters
  5. Cities On Flame With Rock & Roll
  6. It's Not Easy

Another opening slot...still a full 60 minutes for these 6 songs...

Scott Kay

Only BOC show I ever made. Don't recall the set list, but I remember the curtain call was a killer version of Steppenwolf's 'Born to Be Wild'.

I remember great versions of Hot Rails to Hell and Cities on Flame with Rock & Roll.


I couldn't help noticing that the reviewer described BOC as "English visitors" and said they played a song called "Strings"... clearly, fact-checking of the highest order was in operation that night...

Randy Burke

Thanks for the BOC site. I went there searching for the concert where I saw them for the first time. It was Thursday, August 9, 1973, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The location was the Dixie Classic Fairgrounds. I'm fairly sure the other bands were local bands.

This was part of the "Strawberry Fields" concert series held in the summer from 1972 to 1975. The stage was outside under a shelter. There was a huge open air grassy area to gather around the stage. Lots of kids attended, mostly 14 to 20 years old.

I know the lineup was the same 5 as the night before in Philadelphia. I certainly CAN'T remember the song list, but if you put this date on the site, some other fans at the concert might be able to contribute something.


This date was included in the original giglists featured on boc.com.

Bert Gangl

As it turns out, BOC did not play the Hollywood Palladium on Aug 11, 1973 - although they did play on Sep 14 of that year.

According to multiple sources, including the Aug 06, 1973, issue of the Los Angeles Times, the Aug 11 show featured Lee Michaels, Freddie King and Bonnie Bramlett.

Phil Gammage

I went to this show at what is now known as Robertson Stadium on the University of Houston campus. BOC did not perform. I was a big fan then and would remember.

I saw them live for the first time at Houston's Music Hall a couple of years later.

ZZ, Savoy Brown, Wishbone Ash did perform. So did Willie Nelson... but there was no BOC.


Hmmm... that's curious: that makes two - consecutive - cancelled gigs for BOC...

I wonder what happened...?


OK - those two pseudo-psychedelic posters on the end above first appeared on eBay in May 2008 and are clearly not originals.

Also - they both also contain the same spelling mistake and whereas the original gig was a "Daydream Production" - according to these two posters, it's "Another Daydream Production".

I've seen a bit of a disturbing trend appearing on eBay lately of non-original posters - and you really have to examine the accompanying text to find out that they're just "recreations".

Watch out for them...

Anyway - those so-called "posters" claim the Dolls were also on the bill but the above ads and review clearly show that this wasn't the case.


I saw the following listing in the Sunday 12 August 1973 issue of "The Journal News" [White Plains NY]:

Grand Funk Railroad, with Lee Michaels and BOC 7.30pm
Sat. Roosevelt Stadium, Jersey City NJ. Tickets $5.50

So - the next Saturday would have been 18 August 1973, and as BOC were playing Tampa with The New Cactus Band on that date, I can reasonably assume that this gig was cancelled - for BOC at least.

I don't know if the gig went on without them, or was completely cancelled...


I found a listing for this gig in the 18 Aug 1973 edition of the "The Tampa Tribune":

The New Cactus Band, featuring Tampa's Mike Pinera formerly with Iron Butterfly/Blues Image, will play at 7 tonight at the Florida State Fairgrounds along with Blue Oyster Cult.

All tickets are $5 at the Fairgrounds Box Office. Some tickets may be still be available at Rasputin's Budget Tapes, Harmony Music at Floriland Mall and the Stereo Shop.

Greg Biggs

I was at this show. It was an outdoors venue next to the University of Tampa where I went to college for a time.

I recall that at the end of Cactus' set, Mike Pinera, who had been in the later version of Iron Butterfly and before that Blues Image ("Ride Captain Ride"), and was now with Cactus, invited BOC to come out and jam.

Pinera was always doing that with bands they played with. Buck and Eric came out I know, but I forget if Alan did or not.

I met BOC afterwards and told them that I had paid $75 for a copy of the BOC live promo album. I later met them in 1975 when I saw them again while living in Atlanta (might have been 1976).


This is a listing from the 19 Aug 1973 issue of "The Tennessean" [Nashville TN]:

Stories, Blue Oyster Cult, Freddie King, and the Dutch music group Focus appear today at Riverside Raceway Park. Co-sponsors of the 4 p.m. concert are WKDA-FM and Sound Seventy Productions. Tickets will be available at the gate.

Jim Bays

I had noted that you didn't have it on there, yet there is a Tampa show in about the same time frame.

I will need to work on the dates... I have no records such as ticket stubs etc. But I do remember that it was at the Hollywood "Sportatorium" and the line-up order was:

  1. Spirit (w/Randy California!) opening
  2. Bachman-Turner Overdrive
  3. BOC
  4. Focus headlined

I remember BOC playing Hot Rails to Hell with Joe on vocals, Cities on Flame with Eric bashing the symbols with a chain and Eric, Albert and Buck playing drums at one point, and Me 262 with the 5 guitars with Albert

If BOC played Tampa on Saturday Aug 18, as indicated on your site, then it would follow they played Hollywood the day before or after.


I've managed to pin a date to this show thanks to seeing a short review of this gig in "The Miami News" dated Thursday 30 Aug 1973, which refers to the gig having taken place on the previous Saturday (25th):

Mosquitoes, heat and long waits in between acts were the main topics of conversation Saturday night at the Sportatorium show.

Performance Associates, promoters for the concert, reported sales of about 3,500 tickets and a break-even situation on the four-group show.

The first group on, Bachman-Turner Overdrive from Canada, pleased the audience with its loud, heavy rock and an encore that lengthened its set considerably.

Then came Spirit, a new group essentially with original drummer Jack Cassady leading the band. The group played on nostalgia with many tunes from its "Dr. Sardonicus" album and the rock hit that made it big in 1968 - "Mechanical World."

Third on stage was Blue Oyster Cult, distinguished only by volume - too loud even outside the auditorium where mosquitoes swarmed with indiscriminate taste for victims.

Headliner for the evening, Focus, didn't come on until almost midnight playing mostly long, nearly orchestral numbers and reaching a high with "Hocus Pocus," its most recent hit here.

Larry Mandel

I was at this concert. I was much younger then. I grew up on Miami Beach and went to many of these concerts. The Sportatorium was a very large venue out in what was then the middle of nowhere.

Tickets were very cheap. I could not afford much in those days but everything was accessible as far as price.

There were not many people at this concert. Focus did a great set and BTO was really just getting started. BOC blew the house away and I remember them coming on stage on motorcycles in leather and chains.

This was all pre-Don't Fear the Reaper times when they sort of sold out. My favorites were (are?) The Red and the Black and Quicklime Girl (the Mistress of the Salmon Salt .. whatever) Great stuff.

Tom Schuster

I wasnt able to make it to this show as my family had just moved to marietta about 3 weeks before but i can still vividly remember the radio spots for it cause it started out with a healthy chunk of Hot rails to Hell.

What a drag it was being 14 in a new town and no idea were anything was or anyone i could yet call a friend since i had a few weeks to go before i started the 10th grade after moving from wichita kansas where i saw boc open for Alice Cooper on the Billion dollar babies tour.

I was bummed but that was about the only boc show i missed after moving to the atlanta area... woot

I later met most of the members of Mose Jones in social situations (partys lol) and what a great bunch of guys they were. great musicians too.


I have another Spivey gig listed for 23 Sept - can BOC have played both of them?

My initial thought was that perhaps this gig was cancelled and the September one might have been - effectively - some sort of "make up" gig for this one...


Alessandro Borri

Well according to the 26 Aug 1973 edition of "The Atlanta Constitution" (page 101), it said:

Scheduled today at Lake Spivey is another eight-hour rock music festival. The Blue Oyster Cult is the top-billed band. Lynyrd Skynyrd and Mose Jones are the best known of the Atlanta-based bands that will perform earlier in the day. The show will last from noon to 8 p.m.

Blue Oyster Cult is a five-man New York rock band that has built a large following through high-voltage conert appearances. A critic for Rolling Stone called the Cult "one of the best bands America's got."

They formerly were compared to the Alice Cooper group and Badfinger, but recently the comparisons have been to heavier ensembles such as Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath.

There are five people in Blue Oyster Cult. Donald Bruce Roeser, also known as Buck Dharma, is lead guitarist. Eric Bloom is lead singer, but Alan (sic) Glover Lanier, Albert Bouchard and Joseph Bouchard also take part in the singing chores.

I haven't seen any review of this gig, so who knows if was cancelled or not...


However, I should note that the 1 Sep 1973 issue of Billboard - apparently retrospectively and apparently incorrectly - listed this gig as being at the Omni...

This is further compounded by the fact that the original BOC schedules also had this gig listed at The Omni...

Maybe that was the original plan, and it got switched at a later date...?


The only clue I saw as to the possibility of a gig at this venue was the following post on faceBook:

Larry Wash

I saw BOC open for El Chicano and Quicksilver Messenger Service in El Paso, Tx. in 1972.

I asked him was he sure it was El Paso, and does he recall a venue:

It definitely WAS El Paso - I drove there from Cannon, NM AFB (where I was stationed at the time) and regarding the venue, I seem to remember it as some kind of Community Center...

I then asked him:

Could the gig have been 1973, because on 1st Sep 1973, BOC played Albuquerque NM with Flash, El Chicano & Quicksilver Messenger Service. Then the following night, they again supported Quicksilver in Pueblo CO. So, if I had to guess a date for a potential TX gig with El Chicano and QMS, I'd say 30 or 31 Aug 1973...?

He said that could well have been the case - "too many drugs and fading memories" - so I'm going with this date for now.

But that is just a contextual guess, obviously, so if anybody has any more info on this, please let me know...


For a while, I didn't have a date for this gig - all I had was the following review which appeared in the 10 Sept 1973 issue of Albuquerque Journal:

Six-Hour Concert was Fun But a Bit Long

By Arlene Tellez
Del Norte High School

For many, the six-hour concert that featured Quicksilver Messenger Service, El Chicano, Blue Oyster Cult and Flash was fun but a bit too long. All the groups gave first rate performances, but it was BOC that got the best response.

Flash, from England, drew a polite response from the small crowd gathered at Civic Auditorium. They were energetic and flashy but somehow they never got the crowd to its feet. Flash is much better live than on record.

While they can be accused of sounding like guitarist Peter Bank's former group (Yes) on record, they have their own sound in concert.

Flash has been together since February 1972. They've released four albums including a new one "Out of Our Hands." For their next album Peter says, "We'd like to have a double album with the first one live and the other one done in the studio."

Blue Oyster Cult boasted some excellent musicians and was the only group that night to be called back for an encore.

B.O.C. is into "chaos" and hard rock. They are also very visual. Drummer Albert Bouchard would bend backwards and flip his drumsticks without missing a beat.

Vocalist Eric Bloom and guitarist Don (Buck Dharma) Roeser would rub their guitars together making machine gun noised or gallop across the stage. At one point Eric and Don even joined Albert on the drums to do some drum work that was unmatched by any other group that night.

The guys in BOC are as energetic talkers as they musicians. They're humorous, interesting and easy to get along with. Their band was formed in New York three years ago. They got their name by pulling it out of a hat.

Their influences have been the Who, Led Zeppelin, and "for a while" even Alice Cooper. Since they were formed they've toured with Alice Cooper and jammed with Cactus, Jeff Beck, and Mike Pinera (formerly of Iron Butterfly).

El Chicano calls their music "The Brown Sound." They're into Latin rock and generate the same kind of energy and excitement as Santana but that's where the similarity between the two groups ends. El Chicano was a fine band and kept the audience on its collective feet.

Formed in east Los Angeles seven years ago Chicano had a hit with "Viva Tirado" in 1970 at the same time as Santana's hit "Evil Ways." The fact that both groups had a Latin sound and had hits at the same time caused some people to confuse the groups.

But El Chicano feels their group is different from Santana and other Latin rock groups. Says bassist Dick Henderson, "We do a little more modern music. We also do rock and progressive stuff besides the Latin trip. We have a lot of influences and that's what separates El Chicano."

El Chicano has a new album out called "El Chicano, El Chicano." They also have released a single called "Tell Her She's Lovely" which they played during the show. It's a good song with potential.

Quicksilver the headliners, played the longest set. They played lots of hard rock and each member was given an opportunity to do a solo.

Dino Valente's vocals and bongo playing were good and the two drummers, Greg Elmore and Harold Aceves, did some nice interplay but it was Gary Duncan's guitar playing that was the basis of Quicksilver's sound. He was always tasteful and his Spanish guitar playing was especially affective.

Greg and Gary are the only original members of Quicksilver Messenger Service that remain in the band. About the group's name, Gary says "When we first got together we were all Virgos and we figured Virgos groove on Mercury and Mercury's Quicksilver. Quicksilver is the messenger and Virgo is the servant - we were all a bunch of servants."

Quicksilver was formed in San Francisco eight years ago. They've put out nine albums, appeared in two movies ("Fillmore" and "Revolution") and performed at many rock festivals including the Monterey Pop Festival and the Newport Jazz festival.

THE GROUP has never had a record on the charts. Does the group feel the charts are important?

"Well," says Gary, "The booking agencies say it's important and I think it probably is. But we don't get on the charts and we do alright. I really don't care about the charts."

What is Quicksilver's musical direction?

"There's a problem of what to do," says Gary. "We'd like to play more of our own music in person than we do. We've played acoustic guitar but the audiences don't like it - they expect us to do feedback.

"We have a lot of songs that we like to play. We'd like to record some and play them at concerts. Sometimes we feel sort of confined in one place. It'll change, though. We just want to survive."

But I was finally able to pin a date to this gig thanks to the listing provided here:


I only found out that this gig was ever scheduled as a result of this mention in the "Star Tribune" [Minneapolis MN] on 24 July 1973:

Encore Corp. and Northernaire Productions will put on a 12-hour concert Sept. 2 at Donnybrook Speedway near Brainerd, Minn., hopefully for 50,000 fans.

With $40,000 for a booking budget, they already have the Blue Oyster Cult, a new British act, and are zeroing in on Quicksilver, J. Geils, the James Gang and others...

"Blue Oyster Cult, a new British act", eh?

Anyway, I'm currently classifying this as a "Cancelled gig (for BOC, at least)" because the above news report is a bit speculative and, whereas I have some nice adverts for a different gig below at the "Indianapolis Rock festival" on the same date, I actually now think that BOC played a different festival - this one in Pueblo, Colorado with Quicksilver Messenger Service headlining...

BTW: I didn't just designate this Brainerd gig as simply "Cancelled" because - for all I know - the gig might have gone on without BOC...

Quick Gig Facts

OK, this has been a hard gig to condemn as "Cancelled". I first knew about its existence thanks to a bunch of box adverts in "The Indianapolis Star" (on Aug 18, Aug 19, Aug 26, Sep 1 and Sep 2).

In the earlier adverts, the band line-up list included "Muddy Waters / Good God". These entries were missing from the final advert on the day of the show, so presumably they didn't play...?

But, right up to the day of the show, BOC were still being included in the line-up in newspaper listings and adverts. For example, this from "The Republic" [Columbus, Indiana] the Saturday before the gig:

Indianapolis Rock festival, with Dr. John, Blue Oyster Cult, Siegel Schwall, MoKendree Spring and Larry Coryell and friends, Bush stadium, 1501 West 16th, noon Sunday.

So you might be wondering just why have I removed BOC from this gig's line-up?

Well, it's based solely on circumstantial evidence, I'm afraid. I can't show you any actual printed proof, but I'm now reasonably sure that BOC actually played a different festival on this day, only this one was in Pueblo, Colorado with Quicksilver Messenger Service. For more on this, see the next entry and see if you agree.

By the way, I did look for some sort of review or gig report in the days following the "Indianapolis Rock Festival" to see if I could find out if it definitely happened or not, but only came across the following (from the Mon 3 Sep 1973 edition of "The Indianapolis Star"), which is more of an examination of the risks of being a concert promoter than anything else:

'It's Great Money, Man'
by Thomas B. Keating

It was pretty much like all rock festivals. About 7,000 youngsters poured into Bush Stadium before noon yesterday, forking over $6 a ticket in advance and $7 at the gate.

A total of 45 Burns security men and several Indianapolis police stopped everyone at the gate and refused to let any bottles, coolers or containers of any kind into the ballpark.

In fact, they even stopped people carrying oranges because there seems to be a precedent of people "shooting up" oranges and getting high munching them later.

Police termed yesterday's gathering "quiet and calm" although 21 persons managed to get arrested on drug-related charges.

All in all, however, everyone seemed happy and satisfied when the show blared to an end about 8 p.m. especially the promoters who have a great thing going while it lasts.

One such promoter, a 22-year-old auti-establishment type with a very establishment attitude about money, explained the potential he is tapping.

"Sure there's big money in rock festivals," he said. "But, maybe not as great as you might think. You got to remember we have a terrific overhead. Take the festival at Bush Stadium today. It ran about eight hours, grossed maybe $45,000 and had seven acts to pay.

"Now most of these acts don't come cheap. You can figure, if you got good acts, ones that are hot at the moment, they'll charge anywhere from $3,000 to $7,500 for a one-day shot," he added. "Then there is security, which is also expensive."

Part of the key to the promotion is to get the word "festival" into the advertising, according to the promoter. While what is really being sold is a long show with rock music, the word festival turns on the kids with visions of Woodstock and Bull Island.

Last winter, for example, a show billed as the "Midwest's first indoor rock festival" grossed $66,000 on a Wednesday night in the Indiana Convention-Exposition Center.

Another rock festival, held last summer in Bush Stadium, grossed more than $100,000. "It looks easy, I know," the young promoter said. "But, you can get burned if everything doesn't go right. Then again, if everything falls in place, it's great money, man, great money."

Still, it confirmed the festival went ahead, and that seven acts actually played. What it doesn't do, however, is name any of the participants, so on the face of it, BOC could still have played this gig, so far as finding any printed evidence to the contrary goes.

I also saw a further small mention in the 3 Sep 1973 edition of "The Vincennes Sun-Commercial":

TEENS ARRESTED INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Police arrested 21 teen-agers Sunday at a rock music festival in Bush Stadium.

Police said nine persons were charged with violation of the Indiana Dangerous Drug Act and 10 with possession of marijuana.

Officers said about 7,000 persons attended the day-long festival and described the crowd as orderly.

I'm always struck about the parochial nature of next day gig reporting in local newspapers. Are the accounts about the bands that played or how good/bad the gig was? Nope, it's always about the arrests and how much trouble there was - or wasn't - for the local constabulary. I think when there's no trouble or arrests to be made, they always seem to be somewhat disappointed...

Anyways, no help there. As usual, if you actually went to this gig or can shed any more light on who played, please get in touch.


OK, after those two gig entries for cancelled gigs on this date, now we can move onto the gig that I think BOC did actually play, and the reason I think that is down to a reference Albert Bouchard once made in an 1986 interview with Deborah Frost. Here's what he said:

Father Valente Gave Us His Blessing
We were playing with Quicksilver Messenger Service in Pueblo Colorado in a canyon you had to be helicoptered in to. It was probably '77, '78. Dino Valente had just been busted. Seriously desiring to create a good impression on the public, he started wearing a Roman collar. He'd always dress up like a priest. This gig was really wild. Allen Lanier got out of the helicopter and there was a tarantula right by his foot. And he tried to catch it for a pet...

It went on until all hours of the night, these things usually do. We were helicoptered back to the motel. Landed right on the front lawn, too. So the next day, we got up. It was like an 8 a.m. flight. We were getting in our cars to go to the airport and Dino Valente came out of his room in his priest outfit. My brother Joe goes, "Father Valente, Father Valente, give us your blessing." And he said "OK," and whipped out his dick and peed on us.


Anyway, for quite a while now, I've been on the lookout for this Pueblo Colorado gig supporting Quicksilver - I knew it was highly unlikely to have been in '77 or '78 - all the currently known BOC gigs with QMS are dated circa 1972-1973, so that was more my target timeframe. There was an interesting and unique feature to this gig, however - the helicoptering in and out of the canyon, and, on his forum, Buck Dharma also said he remembered having to do that, although he couldn't remember where it had been.

OK, with that in mind, I'm now going to list a couple of newspaper articles about this gig.

Here's the Mon 20 Aug 1973 edition of the "Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph":

Rock Music Festival Set Sept. 2 in Canon City
Fremont County's first rock music festival has received approval of the board of county commissioners after assurances from the sponsors that pertinent state and county health safety, health and law enforcement requirements will be observed. The Sept. 2 concert will be staged on a 1,100-acre site leased from Mr. and Mrs. John Yellico of Wetmore. Location of the concert will be a plateau known as Coyote Ridge five to six miles south of Florence on the Wetmore road, SH 67, on the left side while headed south.

Fred Brescher, president of the Wood Lizzard Corporation, sponsors of the rock music festival, said between 20,000 and 30,000 fans are expected. Brescher met with the commissioners to iron out agreements on safety and health.

Pueblo attorney, Edward L. Yaklich said the concert, originally set for July 14-15, is being advertised in population centers in Colorado.

The county commissioners and Brescher agreed to another meeting three to five days in advance of the concert to review all of the general requirements. At that time, Brescher, based on advance ticket sales, will project the audience potential. Before the festival will start, the commissioners and Fremont County Zoning Officer, Joe Alessi, will inspect the area and facilities.

Requirements by the commissioners included fire precautions, traffic analysis, sanitation facilities, adequate traffic routes and adequate parking, adequate medical personnel and ambulance on hand, radio communications, traffic control, seating and crowd management.

The rock music groups that will perform have not been named, but they will include many of the same that will perform the day prior in Albuquerque, N.M. They will fly to Colorado and possibly to Coyote Ridge via helicopter, depending on the crowd size.

Now that's interesting - a Colorado festival featuring "many of the same" groups who performed in Albuquerque the previous day, and I couldn't help noticing the proposed use of helicopters...

As BOC were on that Albuquerque bill supporting QMS the previous evening, this gig was beginning to tick all the boxes.

Here's the Gazette-Telegraph's Sat 1 Sep 1973 edition:

Fremont County Rock Festival Still Uncertain
FLORENCE (UPI) - Fremont County authorities made an inspection Friday of the proposed site of a rock festival which is expected to attract thousands of youths this weekend.

County commissioners said a previous inspection indicated that adequate facilities had not been prepared. The festival is scheduled to be held Sunday at a site five miles south of here.

Fred Brescher, president of the Wood Lizzard Corp. in Pueblo, denied earlier predictions that up to 30,000 persons would attend the gathering.

The festival sponsor said "a more realistic figure would be close to 10,000 persons."

Brescher said he also was uncertain whether the featured performers, Quicksilver Messenger Service, with Malo and Flash also on the bill, would be on the program.

"If the Messengers don't appear, we will have a comparable substitute," Brescher said.

This indicates that this was a fairly precarious gig, with the main headliner not even a certainty just the day before the gig itself.

However, the Mon 3 Sep 1973 edition indicated that all went OK:

Florence Rock Festival Goes Off Without Hitch
FLORENCE, Colo. (UPI) - Fremont County authorities said Monday they were pleased with the conduct of several thousand youths who flocked to the area over the weekend to attend the Coyoto Ridge Festival of Life.

Organizers of the rock festival had expected anywhere from 10,000 to 30,000 persons, but official estimates range from 3,000 to 7,000.

"They were very quiet," said Fremont County Deputy Sheriff I.B. Hill. "Everything went pretty well."

The sheriff's office, which was at full strength in case of problems, said a few traffic tickets were handed out. There also were four arrests made in Florence, north of the festival site for narcotics possession.

Joe Haynes, head of a private firm handling security at the festival, also reported the crowd as being "well-behaved" and said there had been no incidents.

Six bands, including the Quicksilver Messenger Service, headlined the event. It got underway 90 minutes late because of problems with the public address system.

John Yellico of Wetmore, who leased the 1,120-acre tract for the concert, said he had received a few "bad calls" from area residents opposed to the festival.

"It's not my kind of music either," he admitted. "But I've got nothing against those who like it."

I wish they'd have given a full list of performers - only Quicksilver Messenger Service (HL), Malo and Flash were named - but it looks like there were 6 bands in total and I am now pretty happy in my mind that one of the unknown three other bands was BOC, even if the newspaper couldn't be bothered listing them...

As usual, if anybody knows the full list of performers, please let me know...

Here's an interesting postscript though. When I checked the list of Flash gigs on "peterbanks.net", I found that this gig was listed (although, sadly, BOC weren't mentioned):

2 Sep 1973
Coyote Ridge Festival, Pueblo, CO
with Malo, Quicksilver Messenger Service.
Concert filmed

Whether that means only Flash were filmed, or the whole gig, wasn't specified, but it's an intriguing thought that there might be some footage out there of BOC playing this 1973 show... now that would be nice to see...


I only know about the existence of this gig thanks to a flyer provided by Tom Chambers...

Tom Chambers

I remember Buck was playing his white SG at this gig. Kalamazoo Ice Arena hosted several concerts before Wings (hockey) Stadium was built. Maybe 2000 people at this one.

Bolle Gregmar

Here's a setlist I know you don't have:

73-09-05 Michigan, Grand Rapids, (Don't recall the venue)

  1. The Red & The Black
  2. O.D.'d On Life Itself
  3. Harvester Of Eyes
  4. Hot Rails To Hell
  5. Screams
  6. Buck's Boogie
  7. Workshop Of The Telescopes
  8. Cities On Flame With Rock & Roll
  9. It's Not Easy
  10. Mommy
  11. Born To Be Wild

Kool ass show.... ;-)


Did they really play Mommy live?

Bolle Gregmar

Oh yeah, they performed Mommy about a dozen or so times, it was rejected during the recordings of Tyranny & Mutation along with Buck's Boogie, and they never actually put any vocals on the Mommy track back then.... the version you have on the remaster is a new vocal track by Bloom...

Mommy and Born to be Wild were the encores of that show... sorry I forgot you need that added info...

Also, That was the Late Show, they did two sets that night, probably the same songs... who knows?


I think this is the same one I was at. If so, it was at the Midtown Theater and BOC did 2 shows that night.


Concertdatabase lists this gig with a venue name: the Welsh Auditorium. I looked it up and the venue was actually called the "Civic Auditorium" in 1973 - in 1975, it was renamed the "George Welsh Civic Auditorium," after the former City Manager and Mayor (the name shortening to "Welsh Auditorium" over time).

Therefore, I'll go with "Civic Auditorium" for now until I hear differently for sure...

BTW: regarding Doug's post above - I've never heard of any BOC gigs at the Midtown Theater - if anyone has any info on this, please let me know...


I'm indebted to Ron Fritts for sending me a copy of the above advert.

Does anyone know if this actually took place, though? Blue Oyster Cult in front of a Sly and the Family Stone audience? Can't have ended well...

Joe Bouchard

I remember that Sly gig very well, since I was a big fan. I think BOC did okay opening the show. Polite applause.

Then we waited and waited. Long set change. Sly's band starts playing. No Sly. Is he going to show?

He finally comes on stage and they go into some jam number. I guess he played a few hits, but I got a weird vibe that there could be a riot and Sly would walk off stage. But he stayed to the end and the show ended without incident.

I hear Sly has hit hard times these days. Living in a RV in someone's yard. Too bad.


The show was in California at the Hollywood Palladium and the actual date was September 14, 1973. I still have the ticket stub! There were four bands in all, opener - Orphan, then BOC, then Joe Walsh, then Mott the Hoople

BOC played 7 or 8 tunes that evening - maybe 45 minutes max.

I believe they played all of side one from Tyranny and Mvtation along with COF, Before the Kiss, A Redcap, either Workshops or Transmaniacon(???) and a rolling stones cover of It's Not Easy. This would be very close to the actual set-list that night.

As for Mott the Hoople - Mick Ralphs had just left the band prior to that gig and lots of people were shouting where's Mick during the show that evening. He had just been replaced by very short notice with one Aerial Bender on guitar.

Steve Weidemann

My first Mott the Hoople concert was at the Hollywood Palladium, August 1973. Opening acts were Cactus (I think), Joe Walsh and Barnstorm, and Blue Oyster Cult.

No seats resulted in "festival standing". Enjoyed the hell out of the night! Bummer of the night was that someone tried to break into my Vega.

Metal Mike Saunders

FEW GROUPS in recent memory have had as successful a California debut performance as Blue Oyster Cult's here this September. Third-billed to Joe Walsh and Mott the Hoople, BOC stole the show musically and elicited an extremely enthusiastic crowd response that was equal to that for the two more popular groups.

The surprising thing is, the crowd was with the Cult from the start. Yells for Manny Bloom and specific Cult songs filled the air. Astute as you'd expect them to be, BOC's set list answered with the first three cuts from Tyranny And Mutation and the crowd was on their feet from the start.

Visually, the group's focal point was Manny Bloom (the guy with the frizzy hair, glasses, and greaser black leather), strutting around the stage with his red Gibson SG like a John Kay Honcho - totally jive but totally alive. The Cult's stage act is impeccably professional, flowing from one highlight to another without a letup, essentially the same stage presentation (although with different material) that the group spent two months in seclusion working up in early 1971.

Highlights of the Oyster Cult's 45-minute set included the thunderous 'Cities On Flame', 'Buck's Boogie', and an extended rendition of the Stones' 'It's Not Easy' replete with quotes from 'Born In Chicago', 'Land Of A Thousand Dances', and 'Walking The Dog'. Not since the Flamin' Groovies has a group walked the dog, much less their guitars across stage! 'Born To Be Wild' was the encore as usual, Manny Bloom and Buck Dharma crossing their guitars above their heads in a sonic blitzkrieg. The music rumbled on, Alan Lanier's skill on rhythm guitar making the Cult one of the few groups around with an awesome four guitar lineup (drummer Albert Bouchard also plays guitar) when they want it.

No doubt about it, Blue Oyster Cult slayed the crowd as well as this fan, and Joe Walsh's interminable 60-minute Grand-Funk-gone-bad tuneup jam and Mott The Hoople's vaguely disappointing set of English arrogance (lots of fans upfront yelling "where's Mick?" at Ariel Bender's fucked up guitar playing) were pretty much an anticlimax (although Mott finally drew big response towards the end of their set and several of the editors of this magazine insist they were great).

With a live show this impressive, it seems highly possible that Blue Oyster Cult will break big within the next year or two, joining the handful of fellow heavy metal groups at the top of the charts. BOC have had good success so far, selling over 100,000 with both albums already, but potentially they have the ingredients to go far beyond that, all the way to solid gold.

Asked for the reasons and the roots behind the Blue Oyster Cult's brand of metal mania, manager Sandy Pearlman (who is to the BOC something of what Andrew Loog Oldham was to the Stones) summed it up succinctly: "A technical attitude from the Yardbirds, and Ideas from the Doors". That's a pretty cerebral combination, probably the reason for an extreme musical calculation that is BOC's one major shortcoming, but otherwise it works out just fine. R. Meltzer wasn't in California, and hence unavailable for comment on Mr. Pearlman's analysis ("It was a good gig - just like Chicago!"), but I have the feeling he'd agree. This group looks like a big one.


"It was a good gig - just like Chicago!"??!!

That would seem to indicate that I'm missing a Chicago gig from this adjacent time-frame... obviously, they played there back in January, but Sandy Pearlman would seem to be referring to a gig a bit closer to September than that with such a comment...

If you saw BOC in Chicago around this time, please let me know...

Anyway, here's another report, this time from the 29 Sep 1973 edition of "Cashbox":

Mott The Hoople / Blue Oyster Cult

PALLADIUM, L.A. - It was a concert that stretched the borderlines of musical coherence to a glittering no-man's land midway between absurdity and cacophony. And somehow, in the great pressure cooker of an auditorium that alternates rock-n-roll with the Lawrence Welk Show, it all came magically together.

Mott the Hoople is a band in the English tradition of rock theatrics successors to the likes of the Who, the Faces and David Bowie; they have the kind of act that generates a contagious energy, adrenalin flowing back and forth from stage to crowd. It was all happening that Friday night - the simple chords clashing against a rippling keyboard, band leader Ian Hunter's rasping lyrics, the hypnotic stage movements of the entire ensemble - a controlled hysteria that echoed through the hall.

The songs were a mixture of Hoople hits: "Sweet Jane," the familiar "All the Young Dudes," and some things from their new and highly touted Columbia LP, most notably the uptempo "All the Way From Memphis." The group was at their best with the hard rocking music for which they are known: some of that effectiveness was briefly lost when they lapsed into an esoteric sentimentality, exemplified by the dirgeful song "Hymn for the Dudes."

The audience remained enthusiastic throughout. Encores were called for and happened as encores will, with the appropriate vocal hoopla.

Traffic was unusually heavy on stage with three bands preceding the headliner. Present were Orphan, Joe Walsh and Barnstorm, both groups having recently been reviewed in these pages.

Third act in the billing was another from Columbia Records, the Blue Oyster Cult. The Cult are an east coast concoction of mystical rock-n-roll critics and credulous rock-n-roll musicians who put on a musical wild west show with flailing guitars, slashing chords and overtones of the occult. Concentrating on cuts from their recent LP, "Tyranny and Mutation," they played at a volume high enough to wake the dead, or deaden anyone so unfortunate as to be alive and present.


The 5 Sept 1973 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun lists the following upcoming show:

However, the 24 Sept 1973 edition explained that the gig - as well as all others booked at the Eastown Theatre for September - never took place as the powers that be succeeeded in shutting the place down. Young folk having fun - can't be allowing that sort of thing to go on...

Quick Gig Facts

I had thought that this was a solid date for BOC as there are numerous posters, flyers, gig ads and listings for it, and, indeed, the gig actually did take place, but I'm now reasonably sure BOC didn't play it.

Here's a listing from "The Kansas City Star" [2 Sep 1973]:

Sept 17 - Carney Rock II, featuring Quicksilver, Blue Oyster Cult, Flash, Phlorescent Leech & Eddie and Brownsville Station, Fairyland Park.

Nice start - the gig was actually 16 September...

Anyway, same newspaper, one week later [9 Sep 1973] next to a photo of Quicksilver Messenger Service:

Quicksilver - The Quicksilver Messenger Service will head the "Carney Rock II" bill at Fairyland Park next Sunday, noon to 11 pm.

The posters for the gig had already made it clear that Quicksilver were the headline act, but this listing helps to confirm that.

The next one, a box ad which appeared in the 15 Sep 1973 editions of both "The Kansas City Times" and "The Kansas City Star", is interesting as it indicates the show now had a new headliner, Rare Earth, plus Nazareth also seem to have been added to the bill, with no mention of Flash:

Carney Rock
Rare Earth
Quick Silver
Blue Oyster Cult
Flo & Eddy
Brownsville Station

On the day of the gig itself, "The Kansas City Star" published a couple of listings. The first on page 160:

Blue Oyster Cult is among the featured groups appearing today in Carney Rock II in Fairyland Park. The concert begins at noon.

And the second, on page 168:

Today - Carney Rock II, featuring Quicksilver Messenger Service, Blue Oyster Cult, Flo and Eddie and Brownsville Station, Fairyland Park, noon.

Note the lack of any reference to Rare Earth, Nazareth or even Flash.

I must admit, I was hoping for a review of some sort after the gig in either of those KC papers, but all we got was a photo of the crowd in the 17 Sep 1973 edition of the "The Kansas City Times" with the following caption:

Fairyland Rock: More than 2000 persons listened to rock music yesterday afternoon as several musical groups performed in a concert at Fairyland Park.

As is the case so often in these newspapers, any follow up articles often just seem to refer to trouble, arrests and policing problems in general - they never seem to be interested in reporting about the actual music itself, and true to form, "The Kansas City Star" didn't let us down [20 Sep 1973]:

Doctor Alleges Abuse by Police
A Columbia doctor has filed a complaint with the Office of Citizens Complaints charging that six to eight Kansas City policemen prevented him from "practicing his profession" at a concert last Sunday at Fairyland Park.

Dr Larry Samuels of the Columbia Medical Operations Clinic said yesterday that he and a registered nurse, Mrs Bette Kravit, also of Columbia, were manhandled while giving medical treatment to a 16-year-old Kansas City girl.

Dr Samuels said he had been hired by Fairyland Park and the company representing the Carney Rock Group II to give medical attention at the event. Accompanying Dr. Samuels were Mrs Kravit, Greg Steiner, a graduate medical student and two other assistants.

The complaint also alleges the physical abuse of the 16-year-old girl by the policemen as she was being taken to an area hospital. Dr Samuels said he was near the stage area when he was paged to go to the medical area where he had set up. He said when he arrived there he found Mrs Kravit and Steiner treating the girl in the back of a Blue Springs ambulance which had been required to stand by at the event.

The girl was complaining of nausea and dizziness, he said. Dr Samuels said he was given the girl's medical history by his assistants and that he saw no need for the girl to be taken to a hospital. He said he told this to the policemen. He said when he attempted to further examine the girl, one of the policemen pushed him aside and another pulled Mrs Kravit from the ambulance and she fell over backwards. Dr Samuels said one of the policemen used profanity.

Dr Samuels said the policemen apparently thought the girl had been using drugs. He said the girl started to climb out of the ambulance and several policemen dragged her back and then the ambulance drove away to an area hospital.

Dr Samuels said Mrs Kravit, who is a disabled Air Force nurse was shaken up and taken to a hospital, where she was treated. He said her physician has advised her to remain in bed because of internal injuries resulting from the incident.

Photographs of the policemen were taken during the incident, Dr Samuels said. when they refused to give their badge numbers and identification. It is police department policy not to comment on a complaint until an investigation has bean completed.

Not a word about the gig itself, you'll notice...

It took a small mention in the "The Belton Star-Herald" [Belton, Missouri] over a month later [18 Oct 1973] to provide any hint that not all of the bands actually played:

2000 Attend Carney Rock II All Day Concert
By Roger Jacobs

Despite the rain and the cold weather, more than 2000 persons showed up for the second all day concert, Carney Rock II. It was held Sept. 16 at Fairyland Park.

The line up groups included Brownsville Station, Nazareth, Quicksilver Messenger Service, and Rare Earth. Also scheduled to play were: Blue Oyster Cult, Flo and Eddy, and Flash, however, due to difficulties they were not able to perform.

The price of $6 also included free rides, making the admission very reasonable.

The company who produced the event (Enigma) plans to have more Carney Rock concerts next summer.

So... BOC didn't play "due to difficulties"...? What does that mean, I wonder...?

The only clue I've been able to find was in an FB post about the show:

Robby Cole:
What a great show - sadly BOC wasn't allowed to play - they stopped the show because thousands of complaints for noise...

This is useful because it confirms that BOC didn't play, but it does raise some questions. We know from the "The Belton Star-Herald" report that the two top-billed acts, Rare Earth and QMS, did play! So they couldn't have stopped the entire show...

So why would BOC, the 3rd billed act, get booted off the gig for being too loud? Who decided that BOC were going to be too loud in advance...? Or had they started their set, and got closed down midway...?

One thing I don't understand - if there had been noise complaints, wouldn't they have said to all the bands yet to play "Hey - we're going to have to knock the sound down a bit or we're going to get shut down"...?

It's all a bit confusing... if anyone has any additional info on this show, please let me know...

BTW: The Peter Banks Archive reckons Flash played this show but as I mentioned earlier, according to that "The Belton Star-Herald" report, they didn't...


I've got nothing on this gig - it was listed in the original BOC.com schedules but I haven't been able to stand that date up one way or the other...

Regarding the possible other acts on the bill, I almost hesitate to include them when I consider the source - that consistently incorrect and pointless jumble of inaccuracies, concertarchives.org.

Somebody called "Bluz1954" reckons he saw this gig, and says that Mike Quatro Jam Band and McKendree Spring were also on the bill.

However, as he stated that the date of the gig was 17 Sep 1973, I was viewing that support act info with some degree of wariness...

But then I found the following mention on the stevehoffman.tv forum in a thread regarding whether or not BOC were the "Most Underrated Live Act of the 70s?":

Here are some of the shows I saw when I grew up in St. Louis... easily one of my favorite rock bands and still listen to them quite often. Those 70's shows were a blast and a bit foggy because of all of the smoke filled venues if you know what I'm saying.

1973 - with McKendree Spring
1975 - with Uriah Heep
1978 - Super Jam with Angel and The Godz and who knows who else...

Have seen them at least another 10 times or so...

Location: Atlanta GA
Apr 27, 2022

So there's a further bit of collaboration that McKendree Spring were on the bill. Or, at least, on a 1973 St. Louis, because there's another St. Louis gig listed for 6 June for which I have zero provenance.

Anyway, for now, I'm going with Bluz1954's suggested line-up for this gig...

As usual, if you can help with any info, please let me know...


This date is confirmed by the Capitol Giglist on Moyssi's website.

R Tagliabue

This was my first concert... still have the ticket stub... row F... seat 7... orchestra,left... the price was $6.00...

Saw B.O.C. several times more at the Capitol, including a show when Kiss opened in April of 1974. Was reminiscing about the Capitol earlier today and was surfing the web looking for lists of old shows. That's how I stumbled upon your site.


Mick Parker of sladestory.blogspot.com has kindly sent me the text from the above "Village Voice" clipping:

"CROSSTOWN TRAFFIC: Saw Slade and the Blue Oyster Cult a couple of weeks ago at the Capitol Theatre. Passaic's answer to the Academy of Music.

The Cult blew Slade, the headliners, right off the stage. After they'd ripped through "The Red and the Black," "Seven Screaming Diz Busters," "Buck's Boogie" (incidentally, the long rumoured live version is now available on a Columbia sampler titled "the Guitars that Destroyed the World"), and "It's Not Easy," the audience nearly tore the place down until the BOC encored with that great '60s punk anthem, "Born to Be Wild."

After that Slade didn't have a chance and they blew whatever momentum they might have built up with absurd audience participation interludes in every song. It may work in England, where they're so idolized, they usually can't hear themselves for all the screaming, but when the audience isn't as fanatically inclined, it sounds as silly and lame as it looks."

Dan Nooger: "The Village Voice" - 4th October 1973

Mick also sent me this eye-witness response to the above review:

That was one man's opinion. If you were there, you would have had the time of your life, like we did.

Robert Christgau, the main music critic for The Village Voice, liked Slade. He has said that when he looks at books or documentaries about Rock; he judges there validity by whether Slade are included.

In fairness to Dan Nooger, who wrote that review, he probably didn't know that the group were helping Powell take baby-steps through their first gig of the tour.

For instance, Don's accident wasn't reported until the October publication of Circus magazine.

Being one of a small army of New York Slade fans, we knew Slade were worth travelling for. Slade gigs were not a regular thing in America and I'd been too drunk at my 1972 gig so I was looking forward to Slade's opening night at the Capitol Theatre .

I've never really been a fan of BOC, but they played a decent set. There was a very long delay between BOC and Slade, but after an hour or so the lights went down and The Boyz hit the stage, what the critic didn't say was that the audience was on its feet from start to finish.

Also I should point out, because everybody was there to see Slade, no one had any kind of problem, clapping and singing along with Noddy, who had the entire room eating out of his hand. Everyone was there to have fun, and we had it in spades!

Martin Cummins

Don't forget to check out Mick's great Slade blog here:


I'd always wondered about this gig - BOC played the same venue less than a month earlier (26 August), and it seemed a bit unusual that BOC would have been booked to play both of them in such a short timeframe. I had wondered if maybe this second gig might have been a rescheduling of the first...?

I still don't know about that, to be honest, but what I do know is that this gig on the 23rd was sadly cancelled.

I'd previously been sent the following preview text for the gig by Ron Fritts:

...Two weekends of concerts at LAKE SPIVEY:

  • SEPT 16 Sweet Water Presents Wet Willie, Freddie King, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and four other great bands;
  • SEPT 23 Sweet Water Presents Blue Oyster Cult, Nazareth and four other great bands - plus skydivers on both dates.

"CULT" at LAKE SPIVEY: One of the last blasts of summer will be at Lake Spivey, September 23 with Blue Oyster Cult providing some "tyranny & mutation."

If you like New York heavy metal, the BOC wants you! A hardcore, underground band that has been around quite some time is finally acquiring some of the recognition that is long overdue.

Referred to by some as a critic's band because they receive a good amount of serious consideration in press in rock magazines, although less popular consideration might have some truth I am sure, but only because someone/somewhere in the line of duty is blowing it and it ain't the band!!

Also the aura around this band, as that of many (of the few we have) heavy metal bands is so abstract and intricate, but so much on the line one can't help but be a BOC groupie.

Their personal intensity reflects life in New York City and not some distant nirvana and in turn transfuses into their music.

Being underground for so long you know the pressure is on, but rather than dissolve you can bet they thrive.

Donald Roeser, main man appearing in snow white, provides some of the finest penetrating lead guitar licks to lie in your ears.

The rest of the band, usually in black leather and chains, consists of Eric Bloom, vocals, Alan Lanier, keyboards and rhythm guitar, Joe Bouchard, bass, and Albert Bouchard, drums.

Collectively they project a very visual unified profound sound guaranteed to make the trip to Lake Spivey worthwhile.

There were also nice, full page ads for the gig in the Great Speckled Bird, so for a long time, I'd assumed it had taken place.

Then I saw the following report on the front page of the Sat 22 September 1973 edition of "The Atlanta Constitution":

Judge Bars Rock Concert at Lake Spivey

The rock concert scheduled for Sunday at Lake Spivey is off.

Clayton County Superior Court Judge Harold R. Banke ruled Friday night that, a previous concert at the lake constituted a "public nuisance" and issued a temporary and permanent restraining order to keep the show from going on.

Banke's ruling came after a day full of legal intricacies, as at least one of the defendants in a civil suit filed by Clayton Dist. Atty. William Ison tried to have the case removed to U.S. District Court in Atlanta.

When U.S. District Court Judge Albert J. Henderson remanded the case back to Clayton County, promoter Mark Golob indicated he would offer no resistance to Ison's suit.

Said Golob, who left the Clayton courthouse before the hearing began about 7 p.m. Friday, "We don't want the young people to go through what they went through last week. Even if the judge allows the concert, the people of Jonesboro would hassle the young people."

Ison's suit asked a temporary and permanent injunction against concerts at the lake's amusement park claiming they are a public nuisance in that they damage "all persons who come within the sphere of its operation."

Besides Golob, the defendants were Dr. and Mrs. Walter B. Spivey, owners of the private park, and Mrs. Frances Cates and John F. Berry, who operate the park under a lease from the Spiveys.

Berry and Mrs. Cates had subleased the park to Golob, who was promoter for the series of concerts.

A second suit, filed last week by the Lake Spivey Civic Association and naming the Spiveys as defendants, is now "moot," according to court officials, since it sought the same result as Ison's suit.

Judge Banke decided to proceed with the hearing, despite the withdrawal of Golob, so that any order he issued would conform to legal regulations.

As some 125 Lake Spivey area residents watched from a partially filled room, Dist. Atty. Ison read off several affidavits from persons who witnessed the concert last Sunday when 80 persons, 22 of them juveniles, were arrested.

The witnesses, in their statements, swore to scenes of drug abuse, drunkenness, nudity and public sexual activity. At one point during the hearing, a Clayton County police photographer showed a film of the concert to the hushed audience in a darkened courtroom.

The black and white film depicted young people lying unconscious, throwing rocks at police and showed several persons being arrested.

The movie also showed the arrest of a naked young couple. In the midst of the scene, Judge Banke ordered sharply from the bench, "Cut it off!"

The only witnesses to appear for the defense were Dr. and Mrs. Spivey, who contended that they had no control over Golob since he was acting under a sublease with Berry and Mrs. Cates.

Asked by his attorney if he wished the concert to go on, Dr. Spivey replied, "I'd much prefer that it didn't take place."

Mrs. Cates, who was not represented by counsel, told the court in a statement, "I was under the same conditions as Dr. and Mrs. Spivey... I had no part in the operation of the concerts."

The Spiveys' attorney argued that the prominent Clayton County couple should not be included in any court orders since they were 'caught in the middle."

In an unusual courtroom procedure, Judge Banke allowed the Spiveys to make sworn statements that they would not permit rock concerts at their lake in the future.

Said Dr. Spivey under oath, "I wouldn't lease it to anybody for a concert of that kind."

Exactly how binding the Spiveys' oaths were is not known. However, the judge said he would hold the couple in contempt of court if any fuither rock concerts are scheduled while they own the lake and park.

In issuing his restraining order against Golob, Mrs. Cates and Berry, Judge Banke said. "From what I've seen I must declare that this is a public nuisance and must be abated."

The case had gone to Atlanta for a few hours earlier Friday when attorneys for Golob argued that a federal court should hear the case since Golab resides in Florida.

However, ruled U.S. District Judge Henderson, since four of the defendants were from Georgia, the Clayton court had jurisdiction.

The attempt to move to federal court was seen as a delaying tactic.

According to Golob, there are 3,000 tickets to Sunday's outlawed concert still out.

Taking this in mind, the judge, after issuing his order, asked the Clayton County police to "try to make some advance plans" to turn away any concert-goers who fail to get the message.

Sunday's was to have been the last of five concerts.

So, sadly, it was off... but those earlier Lake Spivey gigs sound like they were spectacular!! Damn, I'm jealous...


I found listings for this gig in Memphis's "The Commercial Appeal" - this from the Sun 23 Sep 1973 issue:

Friday - Slade, Blue Oyster Cult, Grin. The Auditorium North Hall.

... and this was in the Tue 25 Sep 1973 edition:

Friday Night Show to Feature Slade
A top-line group from England and a pair of American ensembles will form the bill for Friday night's Auditorium North Hall rock show.

The English representatives are called Slade, a tough, bluesey, four-man hard rock combo. The domestic groups are Blue Oyster Cult and Grin. Blue Oyster Cult is a six-member outfit from New York. Grin's four members hail from the Washington area.

The show, an effort of Mid-South Productions, Inc. will begin at 8 p.m.

BOC's a "six member outfit", eh...? Well, they do say that Buck Dharma counts as two...


This is a listing from the 16 September 1973 issue of "The Courier-Journal" [Louisville KY]:

Sept. 29 - Slade, Blue Oyster Cult, and Hydra; 8 p.m., Convention Center; tickets at the box office.

Mark Hodge

I was checking some old ticket stubs and I have found a BOC date not listed on the gig list.

On October 4, 1973, Uriah Heep played a concert in Tulsa, OK with Tucky Buzzard. Blue Oyster Cult was billed or announced as a surprise guest and played that night.

Five of us went to the concert that night, we drove from Arkansas, and all five of us can concur that BOC was there.

I remember that before the show they would only say a special guest band would be performing. When they announced that the special guest band was BOC, the place exploded.

I don't remember the set list, I think I was still in shock. But they just absolutely blew Tucky Buzzard away, which makes me think that they came on after TB. Most of us had never heard of TB anyway. So to have BOC there was an absolute thrill.

I tried to look up the Tulsa World archives but they charge to utilize it. I'm sure there must be a write-up about the show in the music section.

Anyway, that is what I know. Hope it helps.


Thanks Mark. For now, until I hear differently, I've put BOC down as 2nd on the bill, seeing as how they were billed as "surprise guests"...


I only know about BOC playing this gig due to the following mention on Facebook:

Jerry Brown:
Saw the Heep in 1973 in Dallas, BOC was the middle band that night, Tucky Buzzard opened the show. I was out of pocket when they came through the next year. One of the very few concerts I am glad I missed.

It was September the 15th, 1974, my buddy said the Heep played two songs. On the 3rd song Gary Thain, one of the best bass players around at the time was severely electrocuted on stage. He never fully recovered, in my opinion, and passed away in 1975 at the age of 27.

I saw the Heep on October the 3rd of 1975, a few weeks before this show and OH how I missed Gary's ability to play that bass guitar. The show was great, don't get me wrong, but I felt something was missing. RIP Gary!!

I asked Jerry how certain was he that BOC was on that 1973 Tucky Buzzard/Heep Dallas bill....?

Jerry Brown

VERY CERTAIN! My memory ain't what it once was but I dang sure remember that show.

It was my first introduction to BOC and when they rubbed those necks together that night I was hooked.

Went and bought the first album and Tyranny and Mutation as soon as I could. I think those were the only two albums they out at the time.

I am 99% sure it was early October of 1973.


Consulting Heep's 1973 giglist I was able to determine a date for the 1973 Dallas gig, although they only gave Tucky Buzzard as the opening band for the gig.

However: check out Mark's post above regarding the Tucky/Heep gig on the previous day in Tulsa OK, which confirmed that BOC were a late addition to that particular bill... this tends to lend some weight to the concept that BOC could well have been added to this particular bill rather late in the day also...


This gig for BOC at least seems to be a sort of make-up gig for them on account of their 9th June Academy gig having been cancelled.

The first ad above clearly shows it was a Slade gig first and foremost, and the ad ran for three weeks in the Village Voice until BOC found themselves added as a special guest in the 6 Sep 1973 issue (see second ad).

From what I can tell, Slade were actually at The Academy for two nights (5th and 6th October) - they're certainly listed as such in Mick Parker's excellent Slade blog, sladestory.blogspot.com, yet I could find no mention of this so far as the ads went in the Village Voice - just the one gig with BOC is mentioned on the 6th.

This leads me to the third ad above, a full page advert which appeared in the 4 Oct 1973 issue of the Voice, which not only doesn't mention Slade, it says BOC were playing The Academy on the 5th and 6th October!

Anyway - I'm reasonably sure that BOC only played the 6th October gig.

BTW: all these images come from a great blog called "It's all the Streets you Crossed", which is dedicated to documenting NYC's rock'n'roll heritage:

Slade, Hard-Driving British Rock Quartet, Arrives: Slade certainly works hard enough. The British rock quartet appeared Saturday night at the Academy of Music, on 14th Street, as part of another tour in which it will try to approximate its home-country success.

In Britain, Slade is the unquestioned number one among the younger bands. In this country, audiences and the record-buying-public are respectful enough, but there's no hysteria, nothing really special in their response.

At Saturday's early show, Slade bounded on to the stage and tore through a 70 minute set full of it's characteristically straight-ahead, basic rock 'n' roll music. Bu it never really coalesced into anymore than a pretty good concert. Noddy Holder, the lead singer, seems addicted to hectoring attempts to get his audiences clapping and singing along; the effect is more daunting than enlivening. If anybody could figure out the formula for guaranteed success in both Britain and America, the riches of the rock world would be his.

Blue Oyster Cult (or, more accurately, oyster) opened the show with a slightly self-conscious evocation of diabolical rebellion that still managed to produce some effectively, driving, brooding music-making.

John Rockwell: "New York Times" - Monday 8 October 1973

Here's what they said in the 3 Nov 1973 edition of Billboard:

Blue Oyster Cult
Academy of Music, New York

Judging fram the hysteria generated by the group's return to Howard Stein's Academy, Slade, now on Reprise, may be on the verge of finally cracking the American rock market. The core of this successful British band is Noddy Holder - all rasp'n'roll, barking out followed commands with the execution of Adolf Hitler. The music is thunderous with lead guitarist Dave Hill sending out scorching, electric riffs. The four of them bounce along, hammering out U.K. singles hits "Gudbuy T'Jane," "Cum on Feel the Noise," "Mama Weer All Crazes Now" and so on - all are condensed, repetitive and frenzied. The group is strictly for the participant, not the passive. And, with all of the band's stage shenanigans, if humor in rock is needed, Slade is where it's at.

On the other hand, Blue Oyster Cult, opening the bill, had more meal to it than Slade's potatoes. A heavy metal band in the finest sense of the tag, the Columbia group of five intertwined layer upon layer of sound with straightforward vocal work, highlighted by some fine ensemble drumming. Loosening up its music somewhat, Blue Oyster Cult drew cheers with the encore number, the old Steppenwolf rock favorite, "Born to be Wild."

Phil Gelormine

Bolle Gregmar

73-10-06: Academy Of Music, New York Setlist:

  1. Red & Black
  2. O.D'd
  3. Mistress
  4. Hot Rails
  5. Diz
  6. Cities
  7. Maserati
  8. Born

On Your Feet Material :-)

Definitely an incomplete tape as some of these titles I only have the beginning and or ending of... still that's a hint at what went down that night...

Chris Baker

We're within a month of the 40th Anniversary BOC show, and today [6 October 2012] is the 39th anniversary of my exposure to the band. Below is what I posted on the AOL BOC board on the 25th anniversary.

Subject: 25 years, 5/8 of my life
Date: Tue, Oct 6, 1998 21:26 EDT
From: Chris Baker

I realized that today marks the 25th anniversary of the first live rock and roll I ever experienced, BOC at NYC's Academy of Music. I walked in a fan of headliner Slade, largely on the basis of their live album; I had never heard a single BOC track.

The first thing I noticed upon entering was the number of people wearing BOC shirts, plus a lot of home-made Cult symbols on denim jackets, etc. I hadn't given much thought to the openers before seeing all of this - I was dimly aware that they were on their home turf, but clearly the following they had was pretty fanatical; the Cult-identified audience members seemed pretty amped up. (I remember a [Rolling Stone?] review of the band's New Year's show at this venue that likened the ticket-holders' line to kids who "looked like they just shot their way out of a concentration camp").

Another phrase I recall from that piece: the band opening their set "as though shot from a cannon". It's interesting to read reviews from that era and see writers struggling to come up with apt analogies for what in retrospect was clearly a premeditated, unprovoked and unprecedentedly vicious assault on the senses. The band opened up with "The Red and the Black", although of course I didn't know its name (and certainly didn't glean it from the lyrics); all I knew was that my ribs were vibrating like tuning forks in lockstep to some kind of hyperventilating boogie-riff-gone-psychotic and it felt as though I'd stuck my head into a windtunnel during a test of a prototype multipercussive jet engine.

Evil? This was beyond evil; this was distilled essence of metallic propulsion, jacked to the maximum, shorn of all sentiment, emotion, or reason, and delivered in interlocking / overlapping jackhammer tempos that imploded on themselves in a shrieking black maelstrom of corrosive rage and inhuman ferocity. This ex-altar boy had been waiting all his life for something that sounded like this, and just hadn't known it!

All the clothes and instruments were black and white, it was as though the unholy wedding of velocity and earshredding volume washing offstage had sucked the optical spectrum dry, bled it of color. Everyone was in leather except the guitarist, who just stood there, eyes focused out beyond the lighting rigs on...Mars? Saturn? Who knew? But from the absurdly fast clip at which his hands and fingers moved, it was clear that he had at least temporarily given over control of his human husk to some advanced and sonically-hostile lifeform.

Bolle Gregmar claims that this show provided the line about the whip that ended up on On Your Feet... I don't think he's correct, I don't believe that the band was recording for that album 18 months before its release. They played this same venue almost exactly a year later, which I find more likely. However I do remember Albert Bouchard's rap from behind the drum kit at one point:

"So I'm driving along and I pick up this guy hitch-hiking...he sees the BOC sign on the dashboard and he says "Hey man, are you into the Cult?". I said, "I'm not just into them, man, I'm in them...I'm the drummer!" He says, "Far out, man!" ... Then I asked him "So how does our music make you feel? Does it make you feel good?...Or does it make you feel bad?"

He thinks a minute and says, "Well, it don't make me feel good ... but then again, it don't make me feel bad...

You know how it makes me feel?

...it makes me feel...(strange chuckle)
...it makes me feel....(ominous low laugh)
...it makes me feel...(certifiably insane cackle)

And that's my introduction to "Cities on Flame". I can no longer remember how many days it took before the ringing left my ears...it was more than a couple, though, and I'd bought "Tyranny and Mutation" before they cleared up completely. And I managed to get to another three shows in the six months after this. I remember there was always one thing I told people about the band's performances: "they don't make any mistakes". Which wasn't true, of course, but the point is that I believed it was: such was the brutal efficiency of the bands presentation and the high-wire audacity of their split-second sonic changeups.

Thanks to all the current and past band members, who are responsible for a slew of the best live performances and studio recordings I have ever heard; and to all the other fans who have shared my enthusiasm over the years. I promise to write something shorter in 2023 :-)

Chris Baker

Two contemporary comments about my reaction to this show: hard to stress enough how shocked I was at the volume, which seemed like a physical force; I distinctly remember thinking "is it LEGAL to play this loud at an audience?". Of course a lot of that was never having seen a band live - but I think BOC were unusually extreme. I felt like I could hear everything, though, which hasn't been the case with frustratingly poor sound at a lot of shows over the years.

The other was my friend and I talking about how the band didn't seem to have a "leader" - Eric and Buck were obvious focal points, but Albert was too, doing a lot of scene-stealing stuff behind the drum kit (sending sticks repeatedly flying high into the air, etc.)

Seeing the band four months later - as they previewed "Secret Treaties" tunes on a bill with a self-immolating Iggy and the Stooges, and the Dictators in their second professional show - was the greatest night of rock and roll I've ever experienced. But this show was a close second.

Albert Bouchard

Wow. What a good intro to cities! I'd forgotten all about that one.

Of course, that was back in the days when everybody hitched. From when I left home to when I got a car of my own, a period of almost 5 years, that was my main means of getting around.

Cool. Thanks Chris.


This gig was confirmed as an Extensions of Man concert promotion here:

Here's the rather strange listing from the 24 Sep 1973 issue of The Morning Call [Allentown PA]:

Singers Booked
"The Blue Oyster Cult", a Columbia Records recording group, will appear in concert at Northampton County Area Community College 7 p.m. Oct. 7.

I wonder what sort of crowd turned up expecting to see some "Singers"...?

Here's a report from the 14 Oct 1973 issue of The Morning Call:

Oyster Cult Concert a Pearl
By Darlene Daniels
Nazareth High School

Blue Oyster Cult rose to the surface last Sunday for a concert at Northampton County Area Community College and put on an unforgettable show.

Tension started on a low key and climbed toward a musical climax as the High Keys came, played their music and left.

The atmosphere changed. The air was filled with silent anticipation and burning expectations. The lights dimmed suddenly and the crowd came to life. Concert goers were on their feet to demand with their voices and clapping hands, the stars of the bill.

"Are you ready?"

"Yes," was the voluminous reply. Blue Oyster Cult jammed the stage, and dealt a blow to the senses with electrifying, supersounds supplied by four electric guitars, an electric organ and a full drum ensemble. In no time, the audience was completely in the hands of the Cult.

No one who "turns on" to good, hard, contemporary rock should have missed this concert.

The concert highlight was a "difficult" kind of drum solo. Three group members sectioned off on the drums and played separate parts. Eric brought the show to a spectacular climax when he strode across the stage in black leather pants, high silver boots and a slinky, shiny, silver shirt. On a given beat, he whipped up the drums and commanded the crowd to "make some noise in this place." It was done.

Group members are all-pro. Five musicians make the rock sounds of Blue Oyster Cult - Donald Roeser, lead guitar and vocals; Eric Bloom, lead rhythm guitar and lead vocals; Alan Linear, rhythm guitar and keyboard, Joe Bouchard, bass and vocals and Albert Bouchard, drums and vocals.

They put out a heavy sound, but how can it be classified?

"It's contemporary rock - not pop or jazz or real hard rock and roll either."

Albert Bouchard explained, "When you think of rock 'n' roll, you think of something evil - how it makes you feel. Sometimes we do it but our stuff is mainly contemporary rock."

The guys formed their group on Long Island and have their base there.

It's a great group with an explosive sound, but how did they end up with such a name? "Our manager gave it to us," Albert said. "It was a title song of a score he was doing for an underground Western movie and we hated it," he commented. Lead guitarist Donald Roeser agreed. "Oh, yeah, but we got used to it."

Blue Oyster Cult has cut two albums so far and is working on a third. The group is rising slowly but surely with a unique rock sound which you'll be able to hear if you missed them this time or want to see them again. You'll get your second chance Oct. 28 when they appear at Kutztown State College as part of the Edgar Winter concert. It's a double bill which falls in the "don't miss" category.

That's interesting - "Oct. 28 when they appear at Kutztown State College as part of the Edgar Winter concert"... that's a new one on me. Looks like some further investigation is needed...

Quick Gig Facts

I found a listing for this gig in the October 4-10, 1973 edition of Scene Entertainment Weekly":

Rock Blue Oyster Cult Nazareth - The Agora will continue its series of Monday night concerts October 8 when it presents Blue Oyster Cult and Nazareth. If the recorded work of both bands is any indication, the evening should be one filled with loud and hard rock. Blue Oyster Cult is one of the few bands to be "heavy" (in a time when it is unhip to do so) and be damn good at it. Nazareth has just released its first album and should be an appropriate addition to the Agora bill that night.

And here's the review of this gig from the October 11-17, 1973 edition of the same publication:

by Derek VanPelt

Blue Oyster Cult is one of those bands which expresses itself very well within a strictly limited field - very hard, very loud rock & roll more influenced by Chuck Berry than by, say, Humble Pie or any of the soporific "boogie" bands that followed them, and which still proliferate. Most of the Cult's tunes sound very much alike. If their music has any complexity, it's not in the compositions but in certain breaks, transitions, and ensemble work on which the band is extremely tight - quite an achievement, considering their volume. My ears were ringing for hours.

The Cult's success is a direct result of their obvious boundless energy and ferocious rhythmic attack on the one hand, and their mystique, on the other. The band has surrounded itself with an array of glyphs, symbology, and exotica which tend toward an aura of the satanic; the devil makes you want to rock & roll. No one in the band wore anything but black, white, silver, or red. The lead vocalist, who worked behind a guitar which he played about half the time, appeared in black leather pants, silver boots and shirt, dark glasses, and a belt closed by handcuffs. I'm not sure this reflects the spirit of rock & roll as I perceive it, but it seemed to work for them.

The band built its set (about an hour and a quarter) beautifully, following a series of its originals with a rock & roll medley held together by the old Stones tune, "It's Not Easy." This featured a great percussive and visual thing in which two of the guitarists joined the regular drummer on his set - one on toms and one on traps - and played surprisingly well. Having loosed general pandemonium in the club, the band followed with three encores, the last of which was the Steppenwolf classic, "Born To Be Wild."

Blue Oyster Cult's strong point is its compelling ensemble sound. The rhythm section, which for all intents and purposes often included two of the guitarists, in addition to bass and drums, was of course pretty powerful. One guitarist also doubled on organ. The only musician I could single out was the lead guitarist, who at times seemed to show an originality somewhat beyond the scope of this band.

Nazareth, a Scottish "boogie" band who opened the show, was plagued by serious P.A. problems which weren't corrected during the set, making the vocals almost inaudible. The guitarist played much too loud, dwarfing everything except the bass. Even the drums were faint. The music was standard British "boogie," about which there's little left to say at this point. I'm sure all the Peter Frampton fans dug it. Nazareth, no doubt disgusted by the unfortunate sound situation, walked off stage after perhaps 30 minutes, but returned for one encore.

BTW: Every tape I've heard of this broadcast cuts off in the middle of "It Ain't Easy"... has anybody got one that doesn't?


I only know of this gig thanks to the above ad from the 24 Sept 1973 edition of the Ann Arbor Sun...


I only know of this gig thanks to a series of ads which ran in the "Ohio State Lantern", OSU's student newspaper...


This show did indeed happen on October 11, 1973 at the Minneapolis Auditorium. BOC opened for Fleetwood Mac.

From a review in the October 19, 1973 Minnesota Daily.


This is a review from the 12 Oct 1973 issue of "The Minneapolis Star":

British Rock Group Poised, Diversified
Reviewed by Marshall Fine

The British rock group Fleetwood Mac displayed poise and creativity last night in a concert at the Minneapolis Auditorium.

Fleetwood Mac has been a part of the music scene in England since the British blues trend of 1967-68. Originating as a hard rock-blues amalgam, the band has expanded and diversified in the course of a lengthy, spotty career.

The quintet has never enjoyed immense success commercially and, because of a number of personnel changes, has come close to breaking up several times. The evolution of its musical style has brought the group to its current and most successful point - and even thisis not overwhelmingly popular: the auditorium was only half-filled last night.

The band's small following is surprising, because Fleetwood Mac was hitting its note last night and doing a fine job of lifting the audience with evocative blues, interesting musical experiments and flat-out rock and roll.

The five members played a number of old and new songs during their 80-minute set, including a couple of space tunes from their forthcoming album, old rockers such as "Black Magic Woman," and some slow blues, such as Duster Bennett's "Jumping at Shadows." The latter was offered feelingly by vocalist Christine McVey, who also played keyboards.

Preceding Fleetwood Mac was Blue Oyster Cult, a group whose advertisements recommend that its "music should be played in a hock shop on the day before Doomsday." I couldn't agree more.

Marshall Fine is a Minneapolis free-lance writer

I must say - I have yet to see any evidence of those "Doomsday" ads...

BTW: I saw some pics from this gig posted on Facebook - check out this link:


The original BOC gig schedules had this gig listed: "73-10-13: Palace Theatre, Dayton OH". However, I'm now reasonably sure that BOC played Oshkosh on this date but I don't know for sure if the original Dayton gig was postponed or simply cancelled. If it was postponed, then I don't yet know its rescheduled date.

Furthermore - I once saw a confusing handbill on eBay for a handbill for this date featuring an alternative line-up - Fleetwood Mac, Dr. John and The Amazing Blondell all performing at Kolf Auditorium.

However, the Thursday 18 Oct 1973 edition of the Oshkosh Advance Titan student newspaper had a homecoming round-up article, and mentioned this:

The concert by Jambalaya, Blue Oyster Cult and Fleetwood Mac was a far cry from last year's presentation by Sha Na Na. About 3,000 sat in the hot humid Albee Hall and drank and smoked and listened to blues Boogie and Rock.

So that seems pretty certain that the line-up version that included BOC was the one that actually took place...

Paul Dorsey

The line-up for this gig was Aerosmith opening the show, BOC following them, and then Mott...

At the time we figured Aerosmith were just another Boston band, and I decided that night they were another poor-man's-Stones outfit - and never changed my mind.

The Hoople, on the other hand, had a big impression on me and I was an even bigger fan of Ian Hunter when he went solo.

Bob Allen

I was at the October 19, 1973 BOC concert in La Crosse, WI. I don't remember who the opening band or bands were.

Two good friends were there with me (Greg Olsen and Peter Blakis). I will ask them both if they recall anything about the gig.

Greg has a nearly photographic memory, and can sing the whole song if you give him a line from lots of rock songs.

I do remember Peter complimenting the the person at the sound and lights mixer about how crisp the percussion sounds were and how good the overall sound was.

So many bands back then nearly blew your ears out with loud distorted noise.

Deborah Arentz

I was just 14 and this was my first rock concert of many. I remember well that Cactus and Spirit were the opening bands. Great time.


All I have on this gig is a tangential mention of it in the Morning Call review of the Northampton County Area Community College [7 Oct 1973] gig further up this page.

Here's what it said again:

Blue Oyster Cult has cut two albums so far and is working on a third. The group is rising slowly but surely with a unique rock sound which you'll be able to hear if you missed them this time or want to see them again. You'll get your second chance Oct. 28 when they appear at Kutztown State College as part of the Edgar Winter concert. It's a double bill which falls in the "don't miss" category.

As I'd never heard of the place before, I googled it, and found that it was clearly a legitimate venue, hosting a number of big name acts in the early '70s in "Keystone Hall"...

Hence its inclusion here.

If anyone can provide any additional info on this one, please let me know...


Here's a report from the 6 November 1973 edition of the "The Morning News" [Wilmington, Delaware] indicating that two shows were planned:

Rock Groups Three
Three rock groups will perform at the Tower Theatre, 5 S. 69th St,Upper Darby PA on Friday night. The groups are Focus, Blue Oyster Cult and the Spencer Davis Group. Shows are at 7.30 and 11 p.m. Tickets are available at Bag and Baggage.

The 7 Nov 1973 edition of the "Philadelphia Daily News" gave the following preview:

Tower Theater Hocus-Pocus
by Peter Baum

In these days of rock-as-big-business, promoters no longer give us many chances of enjoying two, let alone three, outstanding acts at one show. But exceptions do sometimes occur, and this Friday's Tower Theater concert with Focus, Blue Oyster Cult, and the Spencer Davis Group is one of those infrequent match-ups that brings back memories of some of the great bills once offered at the Fillmore.

Focus is a quartet of Dutchmen that boasts not only a rising star in guitarist Jan Akkerman, but also rock's finest yodeler in Thijs Van Leer (who is also more than competent on keyboards). Van Leer's special talent was showcased in Focus' big hit "Hocus Pocus," an admitted "Hard rock joke." While the song was good fun, it was hardly indicative of what Focus' music is realy about.

The subsequent "Moving Waves" and "Focus III" albums were filled with serious, classically oriented instrumentals, some of which (most notably "Sylvia" and "Focus II") are truly gorgeous compositions. Focus has become quite popular with the Yes-ELP-Tull crowd and for good reason: like those groups, Focus manages to combine musical intelligence with showmanship and improvisational flair.

The Spencer Davis Group is best known for giving us songs like "I'm a Man" and "Gimme Some Lovin'" and for serving as Steve Winwood's stepping stone to stardom. But now, after some less than spectacular solo efforts, Davis and his band have regrouped with results that may make us less likely to think of the band only in terms of their early achievements.

The key to the group is Eddie Hardin, one of the better unknown keyboard men around; The band's new release, "Gluggo," has been warmly received and the Spencer Davis group could just be the surprise hit of the year.

But the real killer in the line up is none other than Long Island's own Blue Oyster Cult, a group that combines "heavy metal" raunch with a somewhat satanic mystique to excellent advantage.

Comprised of Allen Lanier (keyboards), Eric Bloom (vocals, "stun" guitar), Joe Bouchard (bass, vocals), Albert Bouchard (drums, vocals) and an exceptional guitarist known as Buck Dharma, the band has been deservedly hailed by critics as one of the very best American groups in recent years.

While hardly any "lighter" than the better known "heavy" groups, Blue Oyster Cult's excellent and comparatively esoteric material sets them well ahead of their more famous rivals.

Both BOC albums contain amazing songs with titles like "O.D.'d on Life Itself" and "I'm on the Lamb But I ain't No Sheep" that are well written, tightly arranged, and compellingly performed.

There is a foreboding sense of urgency in these songs that comes across even better in the band's fascinating, if somewhat schizoid, stage act. Reportedly the group's self-proclaimed goal is to be "programmed on a music machine to be played on the last day of earth." While that is a comforting thought, it is to be hoped that Blue Oyster Cult will be played on many a music machine before then.

Showtimes at the Tower are 7:30 and 11 P.M. Phone 352-6565 for ticket information.

However, the 9 November 1973 edition of the "Philadelphia Daily News" shows that it was only the one show in the end:

Tower Changes Show Time
Tonight's Tower Theater presentation of Focus, Spencer Davis and Blue Oyster Cult will begin at 10 p.m., rather than 7.30 and 11 p.m. as previously announced. Tickets sold for both shows will be honored at this performance.

Rich Marak

I saw BOC in Philadelphia back in '73 where I traveled specifically to see them for the first time (following Spencer Davis and opening for Focus)...

Quick Gig Facts

This gig was originally billed as a Fleetwood Mac/Weather Report gig. Here's a listing from The Republic [Columbus, Indiana] dated Sat 06 Oct 1973:

IU Union board's pop concert series, Assembly hall unless stated otherwise:
Elton John, 8 p.m. Sunday;
Focus in concert, Nov. 2;
Fleetwood Mac and Weather Report, Nov. 10.

This remained the case for all other listings during October.

However, the 2nd Nov edition featured this news:

Fleetwood Mac and Cactus Cancel at IU
BLOOMINGTON - Fleetwood Fleetwood Mac and Cactus have canceled canceled their scheduled Nov. 10 pop concert appearance at Indiana University Bloomington.

The illness of a member of Fleetwood Mac has forced the group to cancel all concert appearances for the near future, including the IU date. A scheduling problem caused the cancellation of Cactus. Blue Oyster Cult has been signed as a replacement, and will join Weather Report in the 8 p.m. concert in Assembly Hall.

Fleetwood Mac tickets are valid for the Blue Oyster Cult concert.

The 2 Nov 1973 edition of the "The Indianapolis Star" had a similar report, but with refund information and a different headline:

Oyster Cult Replaces Mac
Star Special Report

Bloomington, Ind. - Fleetwood Mac and Cactus have cancelled their scheduled Pop Concert appearance Nov. 10 at Indiana University Bloomington.

The illness of a member of Fleetwood Mac has forced the group to cancel all concert appearances for the near future, including the IU date. A scheduling problem caused the cancellation of Cactus.

Blue Oyster Cult has been signed as a replacement, and will join Weather Report in the 8 p.m. concert in Assembly Hall.

Fleetwood Mac tickets are valid for the Blue Oyster Cult concert. However, those preferring a refund have until 4:45 p.m. today to turn in their tickets at the Hall box-office.

Clearly, the fact that Cactus are mentioned as having also cancelled is interesting because, prior to this, they hadn't been mentioned in any of the listings as being on the bill in question. It was just supposed to be Fleetwood Mac and Weather Report, with the wording strongly indicating that Fleetwood Mac were clearly the scheduled headliners.

So, if Cactus had been surreptitiously added to that bill sometime in October, then the proposed line-up would seem to have been:

  1. Cactus
  2. Weather Report
  3. Fleetwood Mac

On 3 Nov, the Republic reckoned that BOC were replacing both Fleetwood Mac and Cactus:

Music - Blue Oyster Cult replaces Fleetwood Mac and Cactus in concert with Weather Report, Assembly Hall 8 p.m. next Saturday. Refunds available on Fleetwood Mac tickets until 4:45 pm Friday.

There was also a mention of the show on the day of the gig in the 10 Nov 1973 edition of The Republic [Columbus IN], so I'm reasonably certain that it definitely took place:

Music - Blue Oyster Cult and Weather Report in concert, Assembly Hall, 8 o'clock tonight.

As BOC were stated to be replacing Fleetwood Mac, then that would now seem to place them in the headlining slot, which is why I've listed it as such.

However, if you know differently, please let me know.


Did this gig happen? I know there's a contemporaneous newspaper clipping above which suggests it did, but BOC just played this venue exactly two months earlier supporting Mott.

Is it likely they played it again so soon?

Stop Press: I now have a stage pass off eBay which seems to confirm the date but adds ELO as a headliner. If that were true, wouldn't the newspaper clipping above mention that?


I have a copy of the Calendar Section of the November 11, 1973 Los Angeles Times that has the listing for the Wednesday November 14, 1973 ELO and BOC at the Hollywood Palladium at 8:00 pm.


I was there. The lineup was Montrose, BOC, then ELO.

A friend of a friend wrote album and concert reviews for a magazine (don't recall which). He scored free tickets to the show from somebody that was hoping for a good review of Montrose. The review barely mentioned Montrose but raved about BOC.


This is a listing from the 9 Nov 1973 issue of "The Los Angeles Times":

ELO at Palladium
England's Electric Light Orchestra will be joined by Blue Oyster Cult in rock concert Wednesday at the Hollywood Palladium. It's a Pacific Presentations show.

Incidentally: I think this was the LA date referred to in the 8 Dec 1973 issue of Billboard:

During their recent West Coast tour, Blue Oyster Cult's Eric Bloom ran into Werner Klemperer, Col Klink of "Hogan's Heroes," in the lobby of the Hyatt House. After a brief conversation the two discovered that they were cousins! Verrry interestink...

Fred Dunn

Buddy Miles opened, followed by BOC, and Rare Earth was the Headliner. A strange combination, I know, but interesting and enjoyable. I'm a little foggy on the date, but I can do some digging.

The Special Events Center at the University of Utah still exists, now known as the Huntsman Center. It sits next to the 2002 Olympic Village.

The Huntsman Center was named after the Industrialist/Philanthropist, John Huntsman, who has donated large sums of his fortune to many causes at the University of Utah, and has several operations of his Worldwide Chemical Company in Great Britain. The Huntsman Corp. is the World's largest privately held company.


It looks like Fred got the running order wrong (above) because here's a review (of sorts) of the gig from the Sat 17 Nov 1973 edition of the "The Salt Lake Tribune":

Rowdy Crowd Spotlights Concert
By David Proctor
IN Music Writer

Friday night, the University of Utah Sports and Special Events Center held one of its first so-called "hard rock" concerts and it was a real event. Not for the music, which was only average, but for the behavior of the crowd that unfortunately, may make it the last of this type of show there.

During the Buddy Miles Band's set, Buddy urged the crowd to come down on the arena floor and enjoy themselves, which many members of the crowd promptly did.

Immediate havoc broke loose. The house lights went on, the fire marshal complained, security guards complained, the promoters complained - and the band kept playing.

Most Exciting
Finally, the short set was over and after threats were raised to close the show, the crowd returned to the seats.

It was the most exciting part of the evening.

Blue Oyster Cult opened the show and was surprisingly tame in light of its "melt your ears, thunder and lightning" reputation. They are loud, make no mistake, but not as rowdy as their album titled "Tyranny and Mutation" might lead one to believe.

They were surprisingly tight and kept the useless solos to a minimum.

Second on Bill
Buddy Miles was second on the bill and it was his three-song set that caused all the excitement. It was apparent that most of the 10,000 in the audience were there to have a good time, but it was a mystery why they picked Buddy Miles' music to have it to. He is simple and repetitive but, luckily, he was held to the shortest time on stage so he didn't have time to get too old.

Rare Earth was really what everyone came to see. They have enjoyed two previous successful trips to Salt Lake City and songs like "Hey, Big Brother" and "Get Ready" are favorites here. They are better showmen than musicians but the music is good to clap along with if you don't listen too closely to the words.

They were well received and again the crowding around the stage brought the lights on, but it didn't seem to bother anyone but the Special Events Center officials and the police.

Quick Gig Facts

Here's a preview from the 18 November 1973 edition of the "Arizona Republic":

Today's "mini" rock and roll festival at Feyline Fields (Tempe's Diablo Stadium) is scheduled to get under way at noon.

Each of the six groups is to play approximately one hour in the following order:

  1. Blue Oyster Cult
  2. Paul Butterfield's Better Days
  3. Electric Light Orchestra
  4. War
  5. ZZ Top
  6. Three Dog Night

Producer Barry Fey expects the show to be over by 7 p.m.

However, the review of the show in the next day's "Arizona Republic" (see the clipping above) shows that Paul Butterfield cancelled before the gig, and fierce storms and lightning brought the show to an abrupt end before headliners "Three Dog Night" could take the stage.


Either my internet search skills have suddenly improved (been searching off & on for a long time) or the sounds of BOC ringing in my head lately drove me somehow to your website, whatever the case, I've been trying to pin down one of my favorite memories of all time, for a very long time, and now, finally, found it.

Phoenix AZ, hot as hell (as usual) my friends and I sitting on the ground (baseball infield I think) looking up in the hills around the stadium where Maricopa County Deputies were on horseback just kinda "observing" I guess, as everyone passed around the good stuff (or so I thought till I spent two years in Thailand, but thats another story).

ZZ Top, wearing bibbed overalls. steps out on stage and announces to the crowd, "hhhhhhey Phoenix, heard ya got some good shit around here, upon which the crowd started tossing stuff up on stage.

From Bibbed overalls to dudes in tuxedos and tails wailing on electric violins, thus their name, ELO, somewhere in there, Blue Oyster Cult, then somewhere around then, started gettin weirdly windy, dirt started blowing around in circles, as it got dark and WAR sang, I do believe, appropriately, with a great purple lit stage to match the mood, slippin into darkness...

The harmonica wailin, stuff started blowin around, I thought a big ass light stand was gonna topple, seems like 3 DOG Night crew was trying to set up, then all hell breaks loose, everyone starts scramblin, all those Phoenix types who hadn't seen rain for a LONG time, running for shelter where there was none...

A few months later, I'm sitting in an Air Force chow hall, Udorn Thailand and a new acquaintance whips out a letter he'd just received from a friend back in Virginia, who described in great detail, this crazy concert he went to the winter before, with these crazy dudes, one of whom drove a bug he called his screaming yellow volkswagen, in honor of screaming yellow zonkers? I guess.

That dude was me, the writer who sent the letter had dropped some acid before the concert and spent the next few months trying to piece together just what he'd done while visiting his friend, stationed with the Air Force, at Luke AFB, AZ.

One thing he'd done for sure, went to one crazy concert, on a night when it rained for the first time in a long time, sitting beside me, as we passed around the good stuff and tossed some of it up on the stage to those dudes in bibbed overalls, as we proceeded to get blown away by ELO, ZZ, BOC, WAR, but missed out on 3DOG Night. Guess they were busy lookin for some dude named jeremiah...

Robert Gottesman

Saw your website and I was at a show that is not listed. Unfortunately I don't know the date. I was wondering if you did.

It was Blue Oyster Cult with McKendree Spring and Streat. It was at Westchester Community College in Valhalla, NY. All I remember was that it was incredibly loud.

Now I see a date that BOC did with McKendree Spring on 18 Sept 1973 on your website so perhaps it was around that time. Any ideas?

Fran McKendree

Wow! You have quite the site going on there. I do remember a few dates with BOC. Mike Dreyfuss, our violinist, may remember the specifics. I'll ask him...

Vinny Buscher

I was checking out my old concert stubs and stumbled upon your site. I saw Blue Oyster Cult during the summer of 1973 at the Westchester Community College Gymnasium.

Not sure of the date, but it was definitely after the 7/16/73 show at Wollman Skating Rink (Central Park NYC). I didn't see any WCC dates on your tour list.

I don't recall any other facts, just an impression that their energy level was not "up to par" with the Wollman Skating Rink show.

My stub is just a little blue tear strip, (so no date)... hopefully someone else can corroborate.

John McIntyre

Saw your website and was looking for this show on the lists and could not find it. I too remember this show. I grew up next to the venue.

Cannot remember the date but will ask my mother. She is still alive and remembers everything. I remember it being incredibly loud and outside at the football stadium.


I've now been able to pin a date on this gig thanks to the following entry in the Friday 23 Nov 1973 edition of "The Reporter Dispatch" [White Plains, NY]:

Blue Oyster Cult and Streat will be featured in a concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday Nov. 24 in the gymnasium at Westchester Community College, Valhalla. Appearing with them is McKendree Spring. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the Student Center. The program is sponsored by the student government.

Rick Glover

I'm certain BOC opened this gig, as we got the tickets more for BOC than ZZ Top. This is still around the time of those first few fantastic records, and I had already seen them (earlier in the year on 27 Jan at East Tennessee State University).

It was the first time I had see the Top and they were at the top at the time, but our group of friends were there to see BOC and were THE show for us.

Can't remember specific set - prolly got tapes around somewhere from that tour, thanks to the internet, got most tours...


Thanks for that info. By the way, be sure to check out Rick's great anotated stub collection on FaceBook:

Bob Kennedy

I have a newspaper clipping where 9 people were arrested at this concert. I was there. I have the ticket stub, though it is incorrectly stamped paid on Dec. 30 by the ticket window.

It was a wild night, many stories, BOC definitely rocked the house!

Bill Bouchard

I am looking for the date of a BOC concert that for me was pretty unique. It was at the Prince George's Community College gymnasium in Maryland where BOC opened for Iggy Pop. I had moved to Maryland in November 1973, so it had to be after then.

I vividly remember being with my brothers in the locker rooms when they worked out the ending of one of their songs. They performed great. I was impressed despite having grown up with them playing in our barn as the Regal Tones.

I was totally blown away by Iggy Pop, not for his music, but by his performance. He seemed like he was from another planet. It was my first and only time I saw Iggy, and he was quite a sight walking through the gym with the audience just sitting on the floor staring up at him.

Any information you can dig up on this would be appreciated. My brothers don't seem to remember this gig, probably because it was such a small and for them forgettable experience.

You do list all the big gigs where I was able to see them, but because of Iggy, this one is the most memorable one for me.


I had previously heard of the existance of this gig but had had no luck in pinning a date on it until I read the following in "The Dictators Story" by John Holmstrom and Mark Rosenthal:

In November they played their first professional show opening for Iggy and the Stooges and Blue Oyster Cult at the Prince George Community College in Maryland. The Dictators are Adny, Scott, Ross and Stu Boy.

This November gig was also confirmed here:

So November is the best I can do for now, until I can narrow it down a bit more.

One thing - you mentioned that Iggy headlined this gig - I don't know why, but I'd always assumed Iggy opened for BOC - for example - check this advert out for a Port Chester gig three months later:

BOC definitely headlined that one so I'd assumed BOC were the bigger draw at the time - especially in the NE. So can you definitely confirm for me that Iggy did in fact headline the MD gig you saw?

By the way - was this your first time seeing BOC then? And - did you ever see any of their earlier SWU/SFG gigs?

Incidentally - David Ramage, who once shared a band-house with BOC in the early days, has posted a couple of backstage photos from this gig on his "lightpainter" Flickr page here:

Bill Bouchard

My memory is not clear on who headlined that show. It seems to me that I remember seeing BOC play before Iggy and the Stooges. The crowd was definitely into BOC, but much less boisterous with Iggy. Like much of the crowd, I stood there with my mouth open wondering what Iggy would do next.

I would say that mid to late November 1973 may be about right, since I moved to Maryland very early that month and it was probably my first trip around the Capital Beltway. I didn't know anyone in the area so I went alone.

The pictures you mention seem spot-on to how I remember it including the clothes that Albert, Joe, and Iggy were wearing. Even the background with used florescent bulbs in the trash seem right.

I wouldn't have had any record of it and never saw a poster since my brothers just called me up, told me where they would be, and I showed up at the back door where someone would check my ID and let me in.

This was probably my first official BOC gig - I had seen BOC rehearsing several times around that timeframe so it never seemed like a big deal, but the difference between a rehearsal and a full-up concert was impressive.

When they played the Capital Center a couple time in the following couple years with laser light shows, it was easy to see how they developed such a following.

I never saw the Soft White Underbelly play, but Albert had brought home tapes every once in awhile so I knew what they were doing.

The oldest memories of my brothers playing were when they were in high school playing in the Regal Tones especially at my dad's farm in our converted barn.

Albert and Joe frequently reminisce about those barn dances as being the start of their careers, but after they had gone off to college, my high school band played one dance at the barn, and so many kids showed up that my dad said no more.

I doubt that my high school band was better than the Regal Tones, but the kids in town had heard from their older siblings about going to the Bouchard dances, so we easily had a bigger crowd than they did. Neither my bandmates nor I made a career in music.


Helpfully, Dictator Scott Kempner has at least let me know who headlined...

Scott Kempner

No idea what the specific date was. I have no flyers or memorabilia of this gig.

I do remember that before the show, backstage, Iggy was chain smoking angel dust. The Stooges were the middle act. I had already seen them about fifteen times or so. That night, after all the angel dust, Iggy went out there on stage, and was so out of it he kept challenging a black guy in the audience to a fight. He kept saying, "Come on, soul man", over and over. I think he did it in just about every song.

Having seen the BOC dozens of times, there is nothing special I recall about their set that night.

As would become the norm for us, the audience tolerated us, and i am sure no one who was there went to their local record store the next day to look for our record (which was still several months away from release).

This was way before there was any club scene in the US, and the only gigs available to us was as opening act to just about every fucking band who was out there in the 70s.

It would take a lot less time to name the bands we didn't open for then the ones we did. We probably played 75% of our first hundred shows in front of 10,000 people or more. It's all there was, although there were some college gigs.

We were signed to ATI, which later became ICM, as our booking agency, so we got thrown out there on the arena circuit But, we were anything but the standard rock band of the 70s, and there was no one using the term Punk Rock at that point, except to describe Lenny's NUGGETS compilation. Joey was still a drummer in a glam band.

There was no precedent for the Dictators, and we were basically cast adrift out there, making no headway, selling no records, and going from meaningless opening slot to meaningless opening slot. The list of bands we opened for included very few i had any interest in.

The best, for me, was AC/DC and THE J. GEILS BAND, the worst was KISS, and there were some that were ok, like THIN LIZZY, CHEAP TRICK, ALICE COOPER, and on and on. The first one was RUSH.

BTW: About the Rush gig - it was a four night stand at Alex Cooley's Electric Ballroom in Atlanta. They were on their second record (I believe) (did they have a record called Fly By Night, or something like that).

I know pretty much nothing about that band. Nice guys, though. We got kicked off after the third night. Long drive home. Stu Boy's last gig and last drive with the band.

David Ramage

BOC definitely headlined this show. The Dictators opened, then Iggy, then BOC.

Sal Cincotta

I contacted the librarian at the college years back, and she narrowed it down to a Friday in Nov. I was able to narrow that to either 11/7 or 11/30, and have since talked to 2 people who went, and they both confirmed it was 11/30.


OK, cheers for that - obviously the hunt continues for some sort of printed evidence of a date - advert, ticket stub, flyer etc - but absent any of those, I'll go with the 30th...

Quick Gig Facts

I originally just had this gig listed as a BOC gig, support act unknown, and then I saw a ticket for it on FB which featured BOC's name on a sticker, clearly stuck over some other headliner's name. I asked the owner of the stub could he check under the sticker to see who was originally scheduled to headline this gig...

Shawn Volpe

It most definitely says "TOP"..... so could be ZZ...

About the only thing I remember from the gig is pot smoke so thick you could cut it with a knife... and BOC did their 5 guitar attack, which blew me away...


That's interesting - thanks for checking that out for me. BOC's previously known gig was 29 Nov in Knoxville TN and that was supporting ZZ Top!!!

So I think the gig you saw was originally a ZZ Top gig with BOC supporting, but records show that ZZ Top ended up playing a gig at Salem Armory OR with Eric Burdon on this date, so it looks like they switched gigs fairly late in the day (hence the sticker) and BOC moved up the bill...

I wonder who was drafted in as support...?

Quick Gig Facts

I found a "preview" for this gig in the 10 Dec 1973 edition of the "Great Speckled Bird", the underground Atlanta paper:

Heavy Metal Hits The Fox
by JP

Tomorrow night, the (seeming) epitome of "New York Rock" bands appears in the form of Blue Oyster Cult at Alex Cooley's midnite show in the Fox Theatre, along with Brian Auger's Oblivion Express.

Rockritic heavy Ed Ward described BOC's music in his review of "Tyranny and Mutation": "...what I heard knocked me clean out. Because underneath it all... they are great in the tradition of all great New York Bands, the Rascals, Blues Project, Autosalvage, the Velvet Underground, the Magicians... They exude a raw, nasty energy which might lead one to say that they are New York city's MC5."

Interestingly enough, BOC have a close relationship with Northeast rock writers R. Meltzer and Sandy Pearlman, who wrote much of the material on the new LP.

The consensus among many other east coast music writers points Blue Oyster Cult to be the hottest of the New York high energy groups.

Lillian Roxon spoke highly of their stage, show, as does Toby Goldstein: "Blue Oyster Cult play as if their lives depend on it."

Many of the highly eclectic Southern rock people talk about BOC a lot, and rumor has it that they love to doublebill with ZZ Top, so...

At press time, little information is available on Brian Auger's Oblivion Express, maybe the title is suggestive; here, one must admit ignorance.

Brian's prior achievements with Trinity are considerable and he has quite a bit of regard in the pop community, so the BOC/Express concert should be a trip for heavy metal fans.

Despite the text saying the gig was "tomorrow night", it's clear this was erroneous. So in effect, this was a preview which was published on the 10th for a gig which took place on the 7th...

I myself prefer a slightly longer advance notice for my upcoming gigs, but that's probably just me...

Bolle Gregmar

73-12-07: Fox Theatre Atlanta Setlist:

  1. The Red & The Black
  2. O.D'd On Life Itself
  3. Before The Kiss (A Redcap)
  4. Dominance & Submission
  5. Screams

That's all I got , but still... The tape runs out on a C60 - works almost as a part 2 for that Cleveland show of October 73...

Sam Judd

The only unreleased multitracks I know of are the ones from the Fox Theater ATL show on 7 Dec 73... but I was told (by the same person who mixed ALDN) that these were "no good.. not worth the trouble - just NOT a quality show... it sounded damn good to me the only time I heard it...

I actually KNOW the guy who OWNS the Multi-tracks... he is the engineer here in ATL whose truck was used to make the recordings... He sold Columbia a stereo mix (it was broadcast/mixed for radio LIVE on the fly) and that is all BOC has to judge by...

I can't help but feel the actual Multi-Tracks might render a superior product with a little "tweak" here or there...

Matters little what any of us think or do... we'll get what we get.. when and if we get it... I stopped fretting over this band shooting itself in the foot years ago...


Funny, a 1973 poorly recorded (the mixing desk has a short and the guitar cuts out repeatedly during the first 3, then the mic during the last 2) Iggy & Stooges show from Richard's in Atlanta was the main selling point of the "Raw Power" reissue CBS just did.

I guess that James Williamson being a trained recording engineer/producer might have had something to do with that gem finally seeing daylight.

Sam Judd

Funny that info should show up on this thread... the tape truck (known as Sam's Tape Truck... it was named after the owner's dog... who always came along and lurked under the console) was there to do a live broadcast of HYDRA, who were opening for IGGY... (the SAME tape truck that was used to do the BOC broadcast)...

IGGY was NOT going to be broadcast, but during the set change, myself and Hydra's manager convinced the engineer whose truck it was to stick around long enough to record Iggy just for us cause we this was the last nite of a full week we'd done with him...

When they started playing, I think we had maybe 3 mics feeding the truck... engineer rolled the 2 track Studer and went in and started patching mics and I started mixing... not a short in the board at all... that's him patching mics and me throwing up faders to figure out WHAT was on them!!!

Whole things done on the fly and was never meant to be anything BUT a personal copy... but boys and girls, YOURS TRULY mixed that fucking tape that was used on that Raw Power remaster... except for the last 2 songs... of course the engineer gets the credit... but I bought me a copy of it anyway... just to hear Iggy do that 10 Georgia Peaches rap!!!

I was surprised when I heard it was going to be released as I remember our manager PAYING CASH for the tape right off the Studer... the engineer HATED Iggy's stuff and wanted NO part of it... that's why he had no interest in mixing it...

Once it was rolling, he stood outside the door of the truck smoking cigs... I didn't even think there WAS another copy... although some copies were made when Hydra was in Capricorn recording their first album... I remember dubbing several RtR's and a couple cassettes one evening for all the Macon folk that needed some Iggy... but we had the "master"... maybe that tape was "dug up" for the release... curiouser and curiouser...

Just the FACTS Ma'am... just the facts...


The above handbill is off eBay. The thing is - BOC played at this venue less than three months earlier with Slade and Hydra...

Can they have played two gigs here in such a short space of time?

As usual - if you know the answer, please let me know...

Sam Judd

Well the 29 September Slade date is verified by my calendar...

Not that unusual for a support band to play a city 2 months apart in those days... Hydra did it all the time... we were big in Louisville...

Parker Drew

I was a student at the University of Louisville, and attended this show and I recall that Mountain was the headliner...

I think the answer to the question could BOC have been in Louisville as a support act twice in such a short period of time is "yes"...

As I recall, BOC was quickly becoming a hot item, and Louisville had a very active concert schedule.

BOC blew Mountain off the stage that night... and I'm a Mountain fan too! They opened with "The Red and the Black"... one of the best set openers I've EVER heard.

The BOC set list from other shows on this tour appears to match...

Mike Rouse

I was at this concert and remember it well. BOC ended the show with ME262. It blew me away. I was in about the fifth row.


I found a listing for this gig in the Sunday 9 December 1973 edition of The Courier-Journal [Louisville KY]:

Thursday - Mountain, and Blue Oyster Cult: 8 pm, Convention Center; tickets at box office.


I'm grateful to Bob Fowler for sending me the above ad from the 20 Dec 1973 - 2 Jan 1974 edition of the "Westport Trucker", although right from the start we know that this gig obviously can't have taken place on this date because BOC played Chicago on 14 Dec 1973.

What's more, we know that BOC played Kansas City's "Cowtown Ballroom" with Charlie Daniels on 28 Dec, despite all the initial advertising and tickets citing a 27 Dec 1973 date...

So, could this have been an early provisional KC date which then later got shifted first to the 27th Dec, and then to the 28th Dec, for some unknown reason...?

This, however, is unlikely when you look at the magazine's date: 20 Dec - 2 Jan 1974. If you ignore the obvious question as to why a publication that first came out on 20 Dec is advertising a gig that had already happened the previous week on the 14th, then you're left with the fact that the (initial) 27 Dec date was already well known at that stage.

For example, here's what the Kansas City Star listed on 9 Dec 1973:

Dec 27 - Blue Oyster Cult, McKendree Spring, Cowtown Ballroom, 8 p.m.

So, by 9 December, at least, everyone knew that BOC were due to play the Cowtown Ballroom at the end of the month, and not the Memorial Hall in a few days time...

Bob Fowler

Charlie Daniels was on the bill for the 12/27 show. No McKendree Spring, sadly.

I got some feedback that it was the radio station that placed the ad (above) and that it was probably just an error by a station staffer. Memorial Hall is another venue in KC that used to host a lot of shows back then.


OK, Bob, thanks for that info - I'll designate this gig as a "phantom"...

Quick Gig Facts
Art Liming

While searching the archive, I found a review of an early gig from December 14, 1973 at the Chicago Auditorium that you questioned in the gig list. I think the author of the attached article got Buck and Eric mixed up. I doubt it was Buck in black, swinging a chain.

I can imagine the Raspberries fearing for their life though. BOC drew a pretty rough crowd. I remember some gigs at the Aragon Ball ( we used to say "Brawl") Room that got pretty rowdy.

Robbie Cube

BOC headlined at the Auditorium Theater in Chicago - the Raspberries opened and were treated very rudely. Iggy and The Stooges were supposed to open,but cancelled,so the very wispy Raspberries were brought in to face a near firing squad.

People were lighting their show programs on fire and throwing them on stage at the poor pretty Rasps! One of the funniest things I've ever seen at a concert. This show was some time in 73,I think.

PS: I spoke with Albert Bouchard at a 2005 Brain Surgeons gig in Wisconsin Rapids, and asked him if he remembered this particular gig. He told me that he indeed remembered it well, and said that BOC felt really bad for the Raspberries that night, because Eric Carmen "is such a nice guy".


I'll check it out, but my father told me he saw BOC in Chicago in '73, and that the warm-up act, a band called "The Raspberries", were booed off-stage. He may even have a ticket stub...

Pat Griffin

Blue Oyster Cult was coming to town and their opening act (Iggy Pop) cancelled. The replacement for Iggy? The Raspberries! My aunt was dating a guy who had some connections in the ticket industry and even though it was only a day before the concert, he was able to score me with second row! My first concert I would ever attend!

The band came out rocking with "I Wanna Be With You" and I was in awe! Eric was right in front of me, wearing a gold shirt with green pants. Wally was on the other side and was in basic black with his now famous hat he often wore. I kept noticing was how long that both Jim and Dave's hair was! Jim had appeared to dye his hair blonde and then it hit me! Dave was playing left-handed! This wasn't Dave at all! Upon further review, it wasn't Jim, either! What was going on?

The band continued to play and was terrific, but the crowd around us unfairly disagreed. They started heckling the band and unfortunately, the band started heckling back, showing people they felt they were number one! (That's what sticking up your middle finger means, right?) Things were getting thrown at the stage, as Iggy Pop fans wanted their hero to jump off a springboard into broken glass, not some fabulous rock band. The boys kept rockin', though!

The band finished their set with "Go All The Way" (why, oh why, didn't they start with this one?) and they had finally gotten some respect, as a few people recognized the song and started dancing, much to the delight of the frustrated band members, who started pointing and smiling at the few of us who were showing our fandom. I can still see this beautiful young girl, clad in purple hot pants and matching top, dancing up a storm, as they pointed to her. (I should have married her on the spot! An angel in disguise!) I felt so bad for them. Was it their fault the promoter had screwed up this booking? All they did was play and play great, at that!

Possibly the most poignant moment of my musical life was about twenty minutes after they left the stage. I saw Eric off to the side of the stage, shaking his head in disgust, watching a far less talented band get cheered wildly. I can't begin to tell you what an impact that made on this young songwriter. You could see his frustration and I felt it, too!

I left about five songs into BOC's performance, I was so angry, and went home to spend all night on hold on a radio talk rock station. I finally got my chance to come on the air and defend the band, winning an argument with some listeners. The deejay declared me the "winner by TKO" and said "these Raspberries must be pretty special, let's give 'em a spin" and he played "Go All the Way" and "Let's Pretend". I felt every painful minute on hold was worth it!

Mark Z

I attended this concert and thought it strange that they billed The Raspberries along with BOC. I now know, thanks to your project, that The Stooges were supposed to play, but canceled. I remember Eric Carmen saying after 3 songs "I don't know about you people, but we're having a good time up here". Almost in unison from the crowd came "F--- Y-- Blue Oyster Cult!"

BOC started out with The Red And The Black while their BOC Logo flag was slowly lowered in the backdrop of the stage. It was all our rock and roll from there on out. We were in the 1st balcony, and somebody threw a lit package of firecrackers from the 2nd balcony, and it landed in this chicks frizzy hair and exploded. It was really a bizarre concert and one that I won't forget.

Nick Doerr

The lasting image 35 years after the show was the Raspberries guitar player walking to the amps at the end and yanking his cable out. They were all so po'd as they stormed not walked off the stage. It appeared to me they thought they could win the crowd back with their rocker "Go all the Way" at the end. Not a chance!


The 1 Dec 1978 issue of the "Argus" (College Park, MD) had this mention of the show:

Back in 1973, some delirious promoter scheduled a concert in Chicago pairing the Raspberries with Blue Oyster Cult. The Raspberries opened, and caught a deafening greeting from the audience of which the kindest (and only printable) comment was "Get off the stage." The poor guys hadn't even started playing yet. "Do I detect a negative attitude?" Eric Carmen asked. The 'Berries proceeded with their set, but the audience never shut up, booing them constantly. The Raspberries were too "pop" for these hard core Cult fans.

Pop music is not necessarily bad music. Quite often the borderline between pop and rock is so thin that it may not even exist. Current groups like Boston and Steely Dan are prime examples - how do you classify them? Pop? Rock? But most rock listeners love to classify, this group is pop, pop is bad, so this group is bad.

There is no justification for this chauvinism. When an artist has imagination, ingenuity, and musical talent, he deserves respect. And when their music has a solid rock sound, they do not deserve to be victims of arbitrary classifications just because their melodies happen to be strong enough to earn them hit singles.

In 1974, Rolling Stone magazine picked the Raspberries' Starting Over as one of the five best Rock albums-of the year. In that ill-planned concert in Chicago, it is quite debatable which group was more talented, and which, if any, really should have been booed off the stage.


The venue was the Decatur Armory. The show was put on by the Decatur MacArthur High School booster club, and by the local head shop "Crystal Ship". There were several thousand in attendance, and the venue was like a gymnasium. One floor, no seats, we sat on the floor (it was too loud to stand up) I was 14.

It was my first concert, and we were already hard core BOC fans, having heard GTDTW and the first two records. Buck played the red (soon to be painted white) SG, and Allen and Eric played a lot of guitar that night, as well.

Some of the setlist included Stairway, Bucks Boogie, Hot Rails, Red and The Black, Diz, lots from the first two records, and whenever we'd yell out requests, Eric would respond "got ya covered".

The opener was "The Flock" and I think the lead singer played some kind of electric fiddle. They sucked, and when we chanted BOC during their set, and yelled for Bucks Boogie, he said, "Wanna Boogie?" people yelled Yeah! and he stuck his finger in his nose and replied "HERE"!... like I said, they sucked, and were the first band that my friends and I heckled off of the stage. My friend Jeff Turley was at that show, unbeknownst to me, and when he gets on here, he may have some other recollections. Also, I'll ask my brother to send me some more memories.


The official site has this gig down as being on the 6th December, but then I received reports that it might actually have been on the 13th instead. However, a confirmed gig in Louisville KY on that date put paid to that idea, so then I went back to thinking that maybe it did take place on the 6th December, after all...

But check out the stub above off eBay - clearly this gig was 15 December 1973 - mystery solved!!

Well, nearly... check out the reverse of the stub above - the ticket holder wrote the names of the bands on the back and it clearly says "Blue Ash", which conflicts with Marty's memory of the support band being "The Flock"...


The stub for December 15, 1973 is correct, but I've never heard of "Blue Ash". I'm 100% positive that the opener was The Flock...


Looks like Marty's memory was spot on - here's a preview from the 7 Dec 1973 edition of the The Decatur Daily Review:

Rock Concert To Be Held
Blue Oyster Cult will be featured in a rock concert 8 p.m. Dec. 15 in the Decatur Armory. Also appearing will be The Flock of Chicago.

The concert is sponsored by the Kiota Club of Decatur, a social and philanthropic group of high school girls.

Admission is $5 in advance and $6 at the door. Tickets may be obtained in Decatur at Crystal Ship Imports and Mimi's Clothes Closet or from any Kiota Club member.

Quick Gig Facts
Rude Boy Johnny

I first saw Blue Oyster Cult back in December of 73.

We were hanging out at Stoner Park in San Pedro, California. Someone said there was a concert that evening at the Long Beach Auditorium. We had never heard of BOC before, but what the heck.

We each scored a .75 cent "big mouth" quart of Coors beer at the local 7-11 and with a $10. three fingerbag of Mexican dirt weed we were off to Long Beach. Bus fare was .25 cent and the the concert tickets were around $5.

We were seated in the last row of the auditorium. We smoked our weed and rocked out to the music, what a show!

Then the guy seated in front of us turned to us and said "If you liked them, you're really going to like Blue Oyster Cult." He was right, we did and never looked back.

Later we would learn Eric Burdon was the opening act for the band that evening.

David Stall

When I was 15 I took my girlfriend to see BOC at the old Long Beach Municipal Auditorium in Long Beach, California. It was Friday, December 21, 1973. I hadn't been a particularly big BOC fan, but my local radio station (KNAC Pure Rock) was promoting the show and convinced me to go. We sat in the balcony and the place was packed.

When BOC started playing dust began falling out of the old speaker well columns on each side of the stage. Within an hour it was hard to see the stage through the smoke (not talking dust here). Wish I could remember more details. Our ears rang for days! It was great.


All the ads and promo material I had ever seen for this gig mentioned just the one show at 8 p.m., and I had no reason to doubt this, until I heard this:

Robert Goetz

I saw both "Screams" and "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" live in December 1973 at the Long Beach Auditorium (not Arena) mind you! They played two shows on the same night with a late show added.

I specifically remember this as I went with my best friend. I went to the first show, however they added an 11PM second show and my best friend went to both.

I was really pissed that I didn't go to the second show that night with him. I'm 99.9% positive they played two shows that night.


I decided to try and check it out, and see if I could find out any info on this. On the day of the gig, the Valley News [Van Nuys CA] said this:

Rock Concert, Blue Oyster Cult and Lynyrd Skynyrd share bill, tonight, Long Beach Auditorium.

So - no mention of two shows and the wrong support act!! But the December 21 issue of the Long Beach "Independent" was more helpful:

Long Beach radio station KNAC (105.5 FM) will present two shows tonight in its Blue Oyster Cult-Eric Burdon Concert in the Long Beach Auditorium. The 8 p.m. show was an early sellout, so both groups will perform a second concert at 11 p.m.

The shows will mark Burdon's first performance with his new band in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area.

David Houghtlin

I just found your site and was blown away to find my first Blue Oyster Cult experience... I've probably seen them 50 times or more.

Anyway, what I remember about this show was that that the tickets were virtually free. We went to downtown San Diego (Golden Hall, where the concert was, I think) and exchanged a can of food for a ticket, about a week before the concert.

The first album was out, a friend of mine had it and I thought it was OK, but all that local radio stations KGB and KPRI (R.I.P.) played was Buck's Boogie, which was fine by me, cause I loved the tune.

I hadn't heard "Tyranny" yet, but certainly did that night. We arrived early and stood pretty close to the stage with an excellent view of the band and our minds melted just right... if you know what I mean. I remember being absolutely blown away from the beginning with the opening chords of Red and Black.

This was the days when Bloom was in leather and cape and Buck was in his white suit... kind of good vs. evil. This really was evident on 7 Screaming Dizbusters... really sinister... till Bloom disappeared in the light.

I think I remember them doing Flaming Telepaths too, obviously before "Secret Treaties" was released... and between my state of consciousness at the time, and the strobes, the joke was on me.

Since this was a "charity" type event I remember a pause in the action and a pretty young lady in a white dress coming on stage to thank BOC for playing the event and presenting Bloom with a bouquet of roses. He gave a long half hearted thank you and then proceeded to tear the bouquet apart and to crush it under his boots, while the band started playing Before the Kiss, A Redcap.

For some reason I remember this song as the "5 Guitar song" that BOC usually did back then. I'd love to have a version of that. I also distinctly remember a drum solo with Buck and Eric joining Albert on one drum set. Seems like that was during Cities.

BTW, the opening act was a band call Daddy Warbucks... they had one cool song with an Edgar Winter type Frankenstein synth solo in it... other than that, BOC blew them away and have been my favorite band for 36 years!

Quick Gig Facts
Robert Fowler

The Cowtown Ballroom was a Fillmore type venue that was popular around here in the early '70's... BOC was the headliner, with the Charlie Daniels band set to open. Daniels was late getting in, so BOC came on first. This was the first time I'd seen them. Little uncertain of the date on this one...


I think I've been able to pin a date on this one at last, thanks to Joe Heyen, who ran the Cowtown Ballroom website [now offline, unfortunately].

Joe is currently engaged in making a documentary about the venue so if you ever saw a show there or have any photos or anything at all, visit the site and get in touch.

Just a curious note - Joe says the date was the 28th December - he says there's a poster he possibly can get access to in order to snap a copy to post here at a future date which will back this up, but there was an entry in the guestbook on his site which said the following:

01.25.08 | Bill Swenson
Came across this site a few days ago and finally got around to digging up my old ticket stubs. I attended about 10 shows in 1973-74. There are a couple of shows I went to that aren't listed. Ozark Mtn. Daredevils-11/16/73 (a $1.00 KUDL show), The Strawbs-2/23/74 (another $1.00 KUDL show). The ticket for this show was printed on the back of an unused Blue Qyster Cult ticket that has a 12/27/73 date. I remember seeing the end of a BOC show (when they used to let you in for free towards the end of evening) around that time, so I'm thinking that date is probably right.

I found this interesting - for a start, the date mentions the 27th, not the 28th on the ticket. If they were being re-used, you'd have thought that might possibly indicate that the BOC gig had been cancelled?

Also - the fact that a Strawbs ticket was printed on the back of an "unused BOC ticket" seems just plain weird - but it also suggests that the BOC show on that date was cancelled and they just re-used the tickets by flipping them over and printing the b-sides...

Of course, it COULD mean that the show was originally scheduled for 27 Dec and then got rescheduled for the 28th, and new tickets got issued for that - but if these promoters were so mean that they re-used already-printed BOC tickets for a Strawbs gig, then SURELY they'd have re-used the 27 Dec BOC tickets for the 28th show!!

Robert Fowler

Re. the Strawbs ticket, much was weird back then. Venues changed, dates changed or were added, just about anything was possible.

It's conceivable that the tickets for the 27th were printed in error, and - to save money - the paper simply was flipped over to print the Strawbs tickets. Or that unused BOC tickets were simply reused, AND the concert was slipped from the 27th to the 28th. Or... (speculate freely here).


Joe has kindly since sent a copy of the poster - see above - and check out the date: 28 December. Looks like the 27 December date was a red herring...

Additional: Bill Swenson has very kindly sent me a scan of that original stub for the 27th December (see below), together with the reverse featuring the Strawbs gig that it was subsequently reused for...

Let's hear it for recycling...

Bill Swenson

Looks like the mystery is solved. The Strawbs ticket was printed on the back of BOC tix (printed in error) and reused.

Just to add a further wrinkle to this mystery, the Sun 09 Dec 1973 edition of "The Kansas City Star" had this listing:

Dec 27 - Blue Oyster Cult, McKendree Spring, Cowtown Ballroom, 8 p.m.

So it looks like at least three weeks prior to the gig, McKendree Spring were originally scheduled to be the openers. What happened to them and how Charlie Daniels came to get drafted in to replace them is yet to be discovered...

BTW: Joe posted the following recollection on FB on 6 Jul 2020 on news of the death of Charlie Daniels:

Joe Bouchard

Charlie Daniels played with Blue Öyster Cult at the Cowtown Ballroom in KC Mo. in 1973.

His hippie van was late getting to the show. He apologized and we said no problem. He could close the show. We played first and Charlie closed the show.

Nice fellow. Fast forward to last winter and I'm doing a showcase gig in NYC with Pat McDonald his long time drummer.

I said I've got a poster in my Photos of the Cowtown Ballroom gig. He texted it to Charlie on the spot and Charlie texted back he remembered that show very well.

Nice guy (except for the politics) and a very fine musician. He gave a lot of young musicians their start.

RIP Charlie Daniels.

Quick Gig Facts

I first heard about this gig thanks to the newspaper ad above that Rob Beresford kindly sent to me but I did also find a confirmation that the gig took place on a now offline Stooges gig list (they'd used a photo of Iggy from the gig).

Charlie Agnew

This was the first concert I attended. I became a big BOC fan later, but I didn't know the band at the time. I forgot Iggy was there, but everything you have seems accurate.

I recall that it was sponsored by a local radio station as their annual 'Christmas Concert'. Saw Bob Seeger and Rush at a later Christmas Concert.


OK - now I'm a bit confused - I've since found a bunch of ads showing how the line-up for this gig developed during December.

It was always a basic line-up of Rare Earth, Reo Speedwagon and Blue Oyster Cult - plus 3 more acts to be announced.

Captain Beyond and Michael Bloomfield Band soon joined them and then Canned Heat were added to the bill - so here's how it was listed on 16 December 1973 in "The Indianapolis Star":

Rare Earth
Special Guests:
Reo Speedwagon
Blue Oyster Cult
Canned Heat
Mike Bloomfield Band
Captain Beyond

However, on 21st December, "The Indianapolis Star" printed this:

Rare Earth
Special Guests:
Reo Speedwagon
Iggy and The Stooges
Mike Bloomfield Band
Blue Oyster Cult
Captain Beyond

So - not only were Canned Heat replaced by The Stooges, but BOC had also dropped down the running order to second!

But, strangely, by 23rd December, "The Indianapolis Star" had this on page 104, under a photo of BOC looking menacing:

Blue Oyster Cult will appear in concert with five other rock music groups in a show beginning at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Expo Center. Rare Earth, Canned and the Mike Bloomfield Band are also on the bill.

Elsewhere in the paper, on page 110, they had this, giving what looks to be a listing in reverse order:

Holiday Festival - Features Rare Earth, Reo Speedwagon, Blue Oyster Cult, Canned Heat, Mike Bloomfield Band and Captain Beyond, 5 p.m. Saturday, Indiana Convention, Exposition Center.

So, what does it mean? Did Canned Heat play or didn't they? If that Iggy site is correct, then maybe they didn't.

As usual, if you can help, please let me know...


The adverts from the Village Voice above clearly show the progression of the band line up for this gig - but they don't tell the whole story...

The first ad [18 Oct 1973] shows it was BOC and Iggy initially, but the second ad [1 Nov 1973] shows someone called "Isis" had been drafted onto the bill.

However, an ad appeared the next week on 8 Nov 1973 which had the line-up back to BOC and Iggy, so Isis had gone during the week.

The third ad above [15 Nov 1973] now had Teenage Lust added to the bill, and this line-up stayed intact for the next 5 weeks.

The fourth and fifth ads above [20 Dec 1973] were the first indication that a second show had been laid on for 11.30pm, and all subsequent ads were for the 2 shows and the aforementioned three band line-up.

And yet we know from attendees - and KISS sites - that KISS were also on the bill!! Much is always made of the fact that KISS supported BOC on New Years Eve 1973 at the Academy, but it was vice versa exactly TWO years later at the same venue.

Anyways, I dunno when KISS got involved in the line-up of this gig - even the 27 December issue had no mention of KISS being on this bill - but it must have been pretty late in the day...

BTW: all these images come from a great blog called "It's all the Streets you Crossed", which is dedicated to documenting NYC's rock'n'roll heritage:

Jason Knox

I have researched the gig while working to complete the gig list for Teenage Lust and i am positive that there was only one show that night and the later show was cancelled due to poor advance sales.


That would make sense and might explain the sudden appearance of KISS on the bill at such a late stage to try and make up for the dissappointment of losing a show by adding an extra band...

Harold C Black
Vincent Walker

I don't see any mention of the New Years show at the Academy of Music aka Palladium. When they played there it was Kiss first ever {big time} show, and they were 1 of four bands, Kiss opened, Teenage Lust then Iggy Pop then BOC.

Don't think Iggy would remember anything as he fell off the stage into the lighting, he was so F'ed up he couldn't stand.

Like i said about Kiss it was their debut in Rock and i'm pretty sure they could help on this one. You were actully allowed to take pictures back then and i still have the Kiss pictures but have lost the BOC ones. Tis a sad sad day when i think about not having them.

Anyway since your interested i will search for old friends and i even have all the Circus and Hit Parade and many other rock magazines from back then with the tours of bands in them every month...

Will go over them and get back to you.

Jimi LaLumia

I can confirm it was just one show..


Here's another article on this gig, but they don't mention much about BOC - it's all Kiss with a bit of Iggy:

In the comments section of the article, someone linked to an Iggy Pop interview in which he mentions this gig - and BOC:

... I was one bill above KISS on their first gig. They were third bill, Stooges were second bill, and it was Blue Oyster Cult who were like an estimable, intelligent, sort of precursors of Queensrÿche, right, kind of in a way, that approach, you know?

But KISS came out and, down comes - I mean they're getting paid 50 bucks, right? And down comes this enormous swirling sign that says KISS in the little spinning chrome lights or whatever, they're on these heels, and I was like, I don't know about this, man. But there they were, you know. There they were.

Albert Bouchard

It was New Years Eve, Kiss was the surprise special guest. Gene set his hair on fire. Their set went downhill after that but the hair thing was the most exciting moment in my memory.


With all that discussion about the logistics of the show, I nearly forgot to remark upon one of the more fascinating aspects of this gig.

Although Secret Treaties was still maybe 4 months away from release, BOC introduced 3 tracks from that forthcoming record at this gig, and we are very fortunate that a tape exists, albeit in an edited, re-ordered form.

Astronomy - introduced here as "Astronomy, a star" - is no less interesting in that it features two lead vocalists: Eric sings the chorus parts but the verses are sung by... erm, a Bouchard...

Here's the thing... although it sounds very much like Joe singing, quite a few people seemed to think it was Albert on vocals...

However, a while back, Joe Bouchard seemed to settle things when he said this:

Joe Bouchard

Hey guys, I was listening to this version and I didn't remember playing it. Number one, that isn't Albert singing the verses. That's me. I wondered how he could be smashing the gong as he's singing. It didn't make sense.

Here's what I think happened. We wanted to do the song but Eric didn't feel comfortable singing the verses. I said I'll sing that and you sing the end part. I must have been really nervous singing cause the intonation leaves a lot to be desired.

Plus I had a really pretentious yucky tone to my voice. It's easy to see why Eric sang the final version on the record.

OK, then, fair enough, it was Joe after all... case closed... Except... Albert then posted the following on Facebook:

Albert Bouchard

Nope that's me. Joe sings more in tune. Originally I sang the whole song.

Yikes! Case back open!! By saying that, Albert has suddenly thrown a spoke into my mental bicycle wheels... OK, there's a couple of bits where it does sound a little Albertesque, but my ears are still definitely telling me it's Joe, albeit singing in a slightly different intonation.

I asked Buck for his opinion:

Buck Dharma

That's Joe. I have no recollection of this at all. : )

And everyone else I've canvassed thinks the same... the only conclusion I can draw is that, and as cheeky as this sounds, I think Albert is incorrect on this one...

But check out the above link and have a listen for yourself...

One other thing: There's some extra-curricular gong bashing going on during this track that I can only presume was done by Eric, unless Albert had somehow grown an extra arm...?

BTW: does anybody know why the live version on youTube was so truncated and the tracks order re-arranged...? I can't see any point to it...

I think also that these date(s) were played in 1973 - if you have any info, please let me know: