1977 should have been a year of consolidation for BOC but they couldn't rest on their laurels - the success of "Reaper" generated it's own set of pressures. The heat was on for BOC to pen another "hit".

Consequently, they took an age to come up with their next LP, "Spectres", released in November of 1977, which contained what was, I suppose, a hit of sorts, "Godzilla".

On the live front, they played gigs with as diverse a bunch of bands as The Ramones, Rush, REO, Skynyrd, Utopia, Nils Lofgren, The Dictators and Cheap Trick. The last three months of the year was spent touring heavily with Black Oak to promote "Spectres".

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Andy Tanas (and Joel Williams) of Black Oak for their collective help in sorting out the details of the BOC/Black Oak tour dates listed on this page.

A massive thank you must also go to BOC pyrotechnician, Ken Welch, who has kindly sent along various hall reports and gig itineries for the latter part of this year, which was much appreciated.

Have you got anything to contribute to this page? Reviews, missing info, ticket stubs, posters etc etc - if so, let me .

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

This gig is confirmed here (as well as band running order):

Terry Lawson

I want to give you an update on the 1/1/77 show. I was there.

The original schedule/lineup was Blue Oyster Cult, Uriah Heep, Rex. BOC cancelled. Their name is of course on the ticket and the original concert ads. I have both.

Anyway after BOC cancelled, Uriah Heep was still popular enough that they moved into the headlining spot and Head East was added to the bill.

So, the running order was Uriah Heep, Head East and Rex. No BOC! I had floor seats and was there for all 3 bands.

Quick Gig Facts
Ralph

I only know of the existence of this gig courtesy of a ticket stub posted by Buck Dharma - quite why he needed a ticket to get in, he didn't say...

John Lloyd

I was at this concert. The first in my life. I was 15. I haven't been the same since...

The Astor Theatre is no longer on Penn St in Reading, sadly. What a great place to see a concert. It is now the Sovereign Center, which still holds concerts, but will never match the character of the Astor.

Anyway, I do have a little helpful info: The Dictators [with Handsome Dick Manitoba] were the opening band.

Some dudes we were with were so stoned, they started running out after The Dictators finished their set, thinking that was B.O.C that just performed.

Everyone would get high in between sets/acts downstairs and then someone looking out would flick the lights on and off when the show was about to start.

We were about 6 rows back this night. Some guy in front kept yelling for "Don't Fear the Reefer"... What a show.

Thanks for the great site.

Ralph

Thanks to the 27 January 1977 issue of the Reading Eagle, I found the date for this show: "Gavin Productions also has signed Blue Oyster Cult for a show Thursday Feb 3rd at the Astor".

In the 3 March 1977 edition of the Reading Eagle, in an article criticising the effectiveness of the promoters, Gavin Productions, it said: "Blue Oyster Cult played before 1800 last month - the smallest audience to see them perform in a year and a half."

Jay Andrusisin

What I remember was waiting for hours until the warm up band played, and when they were finished and walked off stage, a girl in front of me asked her friend, "Was that Blue Oyster Cult?"

This was the first BOC concert for me and my friends. BOC opened up with "Stairway to the Stars."

I wish I could got back in time and see it again. Like everything else in life, you don't appreciate the special moments when they happen.

Now I am middle-aged and bald, and my children cringe every time we go into Reading because I start waxing poetic about that night.

Ralph

Patti Smith cancelled after being injured in a gig at Tampa's Curtis Hixon Hall supporting Bob Seger - she had tripped over a monitor and plunged 8 feet of the stage onto a concrete floor.

Jaan Hirs

This concert was recorded by a local Long Island radio station called WLIR, and it was replayed on the radio a short time afterwards. It would be awesome to locate the recording of this concert and get it released!

Joe E Mack

The big Long Island homecoming for it's hometown heroes. Actually Albert and Joe were from upstate Watertown. In any event, it was a windy snowy night and the Nassau Coliseum was maybe 3/4 full. Bloom pointed that out later in the show.

But what the two previous fans didn't mention was the opening act who may have been out of their element this early in the careers. The RAMONES! They were welcomed politely enough-but then after 5 songs, every one of them sounded the same. Dee Dee going "1-2-3-4!" during every break. It WAS tiresome and after 25 minutes the boys were booed off the stage. They tried.

I was sitting in the 4th row on the right side-ear damage from the PA! I can't remember their set compared to the Oct 76 show at Commack but Eric wore a white karate suit instead of leather, and Buck donned his usual white jumpsuit. Stairway opened the show with the flashpots going off.

Highlights were Albert's drum solo and then dancing like a ragdoll up front after it with someone else on the drums (go figure), Joe's bass solo (I heard myself screaming "Go Joe!" on the WLIR broadcast the following week), Flaming Telepaths with the strobes freaking everyone out, and Reaper at the end.

Dharma, of course, was tremendous. It was generally OK but not as solid the Commack show. THAT was terrific. I didn't know about Patti Smith's accident. Too bad. She would have probably come out to do Vera Gemini from Agents with Albert.

Sirrastus

Noticed your Feb 4,1977 Nassau set list - they started with Stairway (mostly instrumental as the mikes were dead) and Sinful Love before ME 262.

Blue Oyster Cult's Night
by JOHN ROCKWELL

UNIONDALE, L.I., Feb. 4  When the injured Patti Smith pulled out as middle act in tonight's show at the Nassau Coliseum, the good citizens of Nassau County found themselves surrounded by their Long Island neighbors. In other words, tonight's rock show here opened with the Ramones, who come from Queens, and closed with the Blue Oyster Cult, which came out of Stony Brook in Suffolk County a few years ago and which has gone on to become about the best and most popular progressive heavy-metaltand In the country.

One doesn't mean to slight the Ramones if one concentrates this report on the Cult. The Ramones came out and delivered a typical 33;minute set of their tight, driving songlets. The act works just fine in a large arena like the coliseumif anything this was about the best Ramones performance this observer has seen.

But tonight was the Cult's night, no doubt about it. Blue Oyster Cult grew out of earlier incarnations that had borne such names as Soft White Underbelly and the Stalk-Forrest Group. From the outset (the first Cult album appeared in 1972) the band was driven by a most interestingeven dialectically propulsivetension. On the one hand this was a heavy-metal band, appealing to teen-agers accustomed to the crunching extravagances of Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin, and flaunting sado-masochistic regalia into the bargain.

On the other hand the band was fired by the fantastical imaginations of rock critics and other low-life collegiate intellectuals. Chief among them was R. Meltzer, who was honored tonight by having his "Stairway to the Stars" (he wrote the words to it) open the show. This subcurrent of brain didn't undercut the impetus of the Cult's rockandroll so much as invest it with tensile strength and textural complexity.

All of this was very much in evidence tonight. The Cult never quits, in the sense that the tension and the drive never let up; in that respect, is curiously like the Ramones, if many degrees cleverer. But propelling the intensity forward is a density of musical thought quite beyond any other heavymetal band around. Instead of the leaden, grinding ostinatos of a Black Sabbath, the Cult's repetitive bass lines are full of syncopation and overlapping accents.

The only complaint one might make is that the band is a little shy on sentiment and contrast. But, you might counter, its whole coldly ironic stance would be subverted by the overt intimation of emotion. And, you could also assert, the spectacular laser effects that recur in the course of the 100-minute show provide a contrast lacking in the music itself.

In fact the Cult has indeed begun, on its most recent album, to come to terms with the varied melodic and harmonic niceties hitherto lacking in its music. Its only big single success so far, and the song that closed the show, is called "(Don't Fear) The Reaper." It has everything nearly all previous Cult songs have lacked: a tune, affecting harmonies, even flowing, Byrdesque guitar lines.

"(Don't Fear) The Reaper's" success hardly invalidates the Cult's achievements so far, however, or hardly lessened the impact of the bulk of the show tonight. It simply points the band in a promising evolutionary direction. And with the kind of talent the five members have shown so far, evolution should be easy.
FEB. 6, 1977
The New York Times

Quick Gig Facts
Sam Judd

There's a gig missing... they played West Point military college on 5 Feb 1977...

I was actually AT the Feb 4 show and spent the night in one of BOC's unused hotel rooms as they pressed on right after the show to get upstate in the massive snowstorm that was moving in...

It was not open to the public - cadets and their dates only (this was well before there were ANY women at West Point)...

Pete Degan

I saw Blue Oyster Cult at West Point as well, but not sure of the exact date. I believe that The Ramones opened up for them...

Regarding the post about this being a cadet-only show - I was not a cadet, just yer average concert going teenager...

Ralph

Various Ramones listings sites have them playing CBGBs on this date, for example:

But as they list the 11 Feb 1977 gig as 10 Feb 1977, they clearly cannot be considered to be the ultimate arbiters of accuracy, so can anyone else shed any light on this possibility that The Ramones opened this show...?

Shawn Burke

I attended a BOC concert in 1977 in Bangor, Maine, at the Bangor Auditorium. Don't know the date, but I noted that this concert isn't on your list. Styx was the opening act. It must have been in the spring, since I was still in high school.

The gear arrived late, and the roadies were still setting up when we arrived. Styx went on without a sound check, and there were audio problems galore; they almost left the stage it was so bad. Guess they served as BOC's sound check! I'll see if I still have the ticket stub to determine a date for the gig.

John T. Meader

This show was during the spring or summer of 1977 at the Bangor Auditorium, in Bangor, Maine. They were backed up by Styx. I remember that Styx had significant sound system problems, the vocals kept dropping out.

The band got really upset and almost walked off the stage, but instead credited the "great crowd" as being worthy of pushing through all the problems.

The sound problems were all fixed by the time BOC took the stage. I don't remember the set list, but it did include the highlight of the laser show with "Astronomy" which was very impressive within the smaller confines of the Bangor Auditorium.

Ralph

Thanks to the 22 February 1976 issue of the Bangor Daily News, I found the date for this show. Here's the text of a letter to the editor:

"Sunday night, Feb 6, as spectators of the Blue Oyster Cult concert at the Bangor Auditorium, we were among the many victims of a violent gathering of thoughtless and immature people. There appeared to be no organisation of the crowd waiting to enter the building, so we waited at its edge.

Even before the doors were opened, people began shoving and pushing. As the crowd grew in numbers, we found ourselves literally being engulfed by the mass of rocking, squeezing and chanting people. Our group had to link arms to avoid being separated by the strength of the crowd.

As it was, one girl in our group fainted from the exhaustion of trying to maintain her footing. With great difficulty, against many unyielding people, we struggled to an open area and waited there until the doors were opened, at which time the police had to pull many in from the crowd, too lightly packed to enter on their own.

We found the random frisking of people to be useless after witnessing alcohol and marijuana free and openly used by a strong majority, with verbal encouragement from both of the bands.

In summary, our experience was one which will deter us from ever attending such events again.
Steve Bost & Scott Barrows.".

Quick Gig Facts
Ralph

I only know about this show thanks to an advert sent to me by Bart van Alphen.

Ralph

I originally had this gig down as on the 10th Feb - but the stub I've been sent (thanks to Chuck Evans) is clearly dated Feb 11.

Tom Flannery

Went to this show, have a ticket stub 1/2 like from the other side of the 1/2 pictured, so no date but mine says 8:00PM Fri and PRES.BY SP, then its ripped. So unknown promoter might be SPARROW, as it matches up with your pictured stub.

We had section 102, row 2, seats 1-5, I was in seat #2, remember it was far left on floor, pretty decent seats. Tickets Through Ticketron, I went to many shows at the Civic Center, from 1977-1980, mostly the arena rock touring acts of this era, so familiar with its layout, I think.

This concert was the first ever for myself and 4 school/neighborhood friends, I was 12 & 1/2 years old,rode with my older brother (17yrs) and his friends in our family Chevy Bel-Air station wagon to the show, smoking Lumbo and Lebanese Blond hash the whole way and later inside the arena.

Ramones opened up the show and a near riot broke out in our section as a guy tried to advance towards the stage with and throw a chair he had separated from the row. He was stopped but nearly everyone was shouting/cussing and giving the Ramones the middle finger, it was a crazy atmosphere during their set.

The Ramones played music that none of us had listened to before, it was fast, loud and really short songs but the sound was really crappy and garbled.A guy in our row later told me it was that fucking punk rock.

My friends and I wanted to buy their record as fast as we could, that shit was dynamite and we really had no idea what the songs were about and didnt catch most of the lyrics from the audience screaming bad stuff at them, but we loved it.

Blue Oyster Cult came out and just blew us away with the live LOUD sound that we had never experienced in person, really a feeling down your spine/body that unless you have been to a show, is kinda hard to explain correctly. You ROCK all through your body.

Sorry, cannot give you a set list of songs performed that night, as I had only listened to the Agents of Fortune album and had not explored the earlier BOC records yet. They played almost all of the songs off of Agents it seemed to us, E.T.I., easily being my favorite.

At one point in the show Eric and Buck did this clash of guitars thing, that had them rubbing guitar necks together for a ferocious sound. Eric Bloom then shot these laser beam lights out of some wrist band type things and the beams hit these mirror balls suspended from the ceiling and exploded light on all the audience members, just awesome.

The drum solo also featured a strobe light effect that was mesmerizing to our stoned out minds and not sure if it featured an early version of Godzilla, as we all saw BOC on a later tour that featured just that drum solo/zilla strobe light combo. Remember the band doing the 4 guitar and bass attack towards the end of the show and just thinking how cool that was.

This show sent me on the now, life long road to experiencing live music with well over a thousand bands of all genres of music viewed and listened too in the 39 going on 40 years since this show, thanks boys in Blue Oyster Cult.

Bob Simpson

When I was stationed in Norfolk, Virginia in 1977, I saw Blue Oyster Cult play at the Hampton Coliseum in either Feb., or Mar., and Atlanta Rhythm Section opened up.

I've enclosed my stub for the Hampton concert. It looks like the date is February 13, 1977...

Ralph

Well, I suppose it does look like it could actually say "February 3" - but BOC played a gig in Reading PA on that date, so it can't have been that.. It could be a "1" in front of the "3" or else a dividing line - the stub isn't very clear... Anybody got any info on this one?

Wayne Couto

I just stumbled onto your site. Quite an amazing resource. Thanks.

Here's some additional info for the set list. The 2/13/77 show in Hampton Roads, VA opened with Mayson, then Atlanta Rythmn Section...

No debate about the date as far as I'm concerned. The date was Sunday 2/13/77.

Dave Brown

I was at the B.O.C. show February 13 1977 at the Hampton Coliseum in Hampton, VA (which is right next door to Norfolk). The band was thunderous and the laser show was quite the spectacle. I was thrilled to hear some of the early songs like Astronomy and Dominance. Secret Treaties is my first and favorite studio LP. I do love all the live albums.

Mayson was the opening band. They were probably our best known local band back then. They got a contract with Bearsville and I believe they had to change their name. Todd Rundgren was to produce the LP but the project was abandoned because of production issues as I recall.

The Atlanta Rhythm Section always put on a rocking show. Their bass player in particular was impressive.

I see that Bob's ticket stub is in better shape than mine. Unfortunately the Coliseum ticket takers always tore off most of the ticket and left us with a small nameless scrap piece.

Ralph

Both ticket stubs I've seen for this show appear to be unused - this has resulted in sowing small seeds of doubt in my mind that the gig took place?

Springdalehills

Here's the deal. Prior to this show, I went to BeBop Records here in Jackson and purchased my ticket. When I got home that day, I noticed that the ticket was perforated (never seen tickets like that before) and much to my surprise, there were two more tickets attached to it. However, they were folded under each other. The person who sold it to me just did not realize there were two other tickets attached. Isn't that funny.

The reason my tickets are unused is because a few days before the concert my right eardrum bursted. This is even more funny but this was a direct result of a previously attended TED NUGENT concert here in Jackson in Jan. of '77. I was upfront against the stage and Teddy Boy had those Marshalls cranked up that night. Unfortunately, the Doctor would not let me attend the Blue Oyster Concert as my ear had not healed.

More than likely, the unused ticket you saw on Ebay was probably one of my three tickets - I have listed the tickets for this concert on Ebay a time or two but they did not sell. I still have two of the three unused tickets. If anybody else has a ticket to this show, it would surprise me. Hattiesburg is a small town and the only reason they got this concert on the Southern Miss. College campus is because of a pro active student activity council.

Here's something else I remember about the Reed Green Coliseum in Hattiesburg. I had attended a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert there in'75. The ticket takers at the door took our entire tickets. I've never had anybody do that before and it made me mad. So, who knows...for those that attended the BOC concert, they might not have gotten a stub back!

I can't say for a fact that this concert took place as I did not know of anybody else from Jackson that was going. However, I feel relatively certain that if it had canceled, I would have heard about it on the radio. I have a fantastic poster of this show that I have framed at the house along with one of those unused tickets framed on the poster as well. I got the poster from Bebop records late one night as it was posted on their front window. Gee, do you think they missed it! I will send you a scan soon.

Jay Weldy

It took place and I was there, but about all I recall of the concert is that they put on the most intense strobe light show I think I've ever seen - gave the whole domed building life, and lots of blue stage lighting.

Saw lots of high caliber bands at the Reed Green Coliseum on the campus of the University of Southern Mississippi back in the day: Black Oak Arkansas, Edgar Winter Group ("people keep asking me, where's your brother" yep, Johnny came out as a surprise, guitargunning us into submission), Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Mother's Finest, Bob Seger, Cheap Trick, Lynyrd Skynyrd, ZZ Top a couple of times, Bob Dylan's Rolling Thunder Review with Joan Baez, Mick Ronson, Roger McGuinn, et al. (one of the best shows I've ever seen).

Hattiesburg was a convenient stopover between/around Memphis and New Orleans concerts and we had an unlame University Activities Council reeling them in.

Ralph

I'm indebted to both John Patuto of Cygnus-x1 and Eric Hansen of Power Windows for sending me this stub (courtesy of John Williamson).

Ralph

When another stub for this gig attached to a scrapbook page went up on eBay [July 2012], it was noted in the page margin that the band line-up went "Piper, Rush, Blue Oyster Cult"...

Steve

All I remember is how intense the laser show was. I'm sure it was before OSHA caught wind of what/how the Cult were using the laser beams.

Never again will any rock concert fan be able to experience what we experienced back then. Bouncing high-intensity laser beams off mirrored-balls into an audience???

Like I said, never again...

Al Moran

I attended the new orleans show on 19 feb 77 at the warehouse new orleans. boc put on the best laser show i have seen and i have seen quite a few. Also, they had a strobe light - it looked like a hand held rifle and it was pointed at a band member and put him in slow motion - cool!

Rush did open and they were awesome - this is one of my top ten concerts of all time and i have seen some of the best - well over 400 concerts in my 45 years...

Ralph

The only evidence of the existance of a gig here on this date comes from the - somewhat blurry - eBay ticket stub above.

A point to note is the slight difference in the venue name given on this stub as compared to the one from the 19th. I checked up, and the Warehouse was called "A Warehouse" at some point, though this stub just says "Warehouse"

Anyway, if this show was played - and here it's worth mentioning that the ticket is, in fact, a used one - then it's likey that Rush were again the support act...

Does anybody know for sure?

Brett Johnson

Prior to the show, I do recall a local contingent of concerned parents/zealots protesting the appearance of a band with Cult in its name, given the attendant diabolical implications, as well as the supposition of a pro-suicide message in the BOC song then receiving the most airplay ("Don't Fear the Reaper", of course). This is, after all, Columbus, Georgia - the buckle, as it were, of the Bible Belt.

Of course, the really big deal about the concert was the use of laser effects - BOC's light show was touted in radio-spots for weeks and weeks before the show, and our little, drafty 4,000-seat auditorium was sold out and packed to the rafters for the performance. My ticket was "General Admission", which meant that I was standing on a folding chair on the floor of the auditorium, forty feet or so from the stage... at least initially. In addition to the booze that almost everyone sneaked in (sloshing in past the very apathetic gate-attendants), certain very generous individuals were freely distributing other enhancements... these were lovely times, since even the cops, far from hassling anyone, were vigorously partaking as well. I can offer little in the way of recollection about the opening act, which was Rush. I wasn't a huge fan, and I suppose in 1977, the bulk of Rush's fame still lay ahead.

BOC's light show really was magnificent... none of us had ever seen any crazy shit like that. Eric Bloom, I think, had some kind of ring or something on his hand, and would zap a big, spinning disco-ball that had been suspended over the audience, so that laser beams were bouncing everywhere. I think there were other mirrors, disco-balls, whatever, situated at various positions, so that there would be a geometric blossoming of light all over the place. Just awesome, again, especially for the time that I'm referring to. I think there were other gags used, like a laser rifle or the appearance of beams coming from the instruments... unfortunately, the overall effect rather compounded some other effects that I was then experiencing - not altogether external, and on the final song, the opening guitar arpeggio of DFTR rather sounded as if it was coming from a very great distance... like maybe the other side of the planet.

I'm sorry that I cannot recall anything of particular note to highlight that performance. I know that it was just splendid though... a great lot of good will and friendliness in the crowd, nothing ugly, and aside from some lingering tinnitus, I was no worse for wear. I'm pretty sure this was my first, genuine rock-concert, and like all things recalled from our bright, healthy youth, it was just great. Apologies for rattling on so, and saying, in essence, nothing. Thanks for the chance to wax nostalgic though.

Ralph

In the 1978 Euro tour programmes, there's a montage of stage passes and one appears to be from this gig which indicates that Rush and Piper were the support acts.

Does anyone know if Piper were actually on the bill that night?

Jim Tremayne

Yep, Piper was on the bill of that show. I remember Billy Squier traipsing around, but not drawing much of a stir.

Rush, on the other hand, blew doors. From the very beginning of their set, possibly "Overture" from 2112, everyone looked around & said, "Who are these guys?" It was one of those shows where half the audience ran out & bought 2112 the very next day - probably on 8-track.

FWIW, as a young teen, I saw BOC 4 times in Georgia between 1976-79: Once at the baseball stadium in Atlanta (8/29/76), three times at the Municipal Auditorium in Columbus, Ga.

Best BOC show was easily that 4/22/77 gig. The lasers & lighting effects were off the chain, especially for an audience that was mostly accustomed to Confederate flags as the main stage props. (Every Southern rock band-from Skynyrd to ARS, from Wet Willie to Molly Hatchet-came through Columbus at some point. I think it was the law.)

The energy was great in that old barn that night, lotsa anticipation, and let's face it: BOC was pretty big at that point. Everyone seemed to have Agents of Fortune, if not yet Spectres. It wasn't my first rock show, but I was pretty young (13, in the 8th grade) & I had a blast.

Tim Walters

I was there. The main thing I remember was that this was the first concert with lasers that any of us had ever seen.

Rush opened, then REO. REO warmed up the laser system with their last tune, "Riding the Storm Out".

BOC hit the stage and there were lasers the rest of the night. THE most stunning, awe-inspiring concert I've ever seen. Wrist lasers, mirror balls, audience scanning. Amazing.

Oh - the music was fantastic too!!

Ralph

I don't currently have a date for this show but maybe someone out there can help me. Here's what Helen Wheels aficianado BOC lyricist Ronald Binder says:

Ronald Binder

CBGB's management signed The Dead Boys to a recording contract. I introduced the band at many of their gigs around NYC and on the night they recorded their LP, "Young, Loud and Snotty" in Electric Lady Studios on W. 8th St. in NYC, I flew in from Atlanta, GA where I saw BOC at the Omni.

BOC headlined over Rush and Reo Speedwagon that night. We flew back to NYC and I went to The Dead Boys' recording session where at 3am, I did the scream over for "Down in Flames".

Ralph

So - does anyone know when The Dead Boys recorded "Down in Flames"? That would give the date of BOC's Omni gig...

Tom Schuster

I was at this show but there's nothing out of the ordinary to my memory, wich is odd cause it always seemed like really strange stuff seemed to be a part of the package whenever I went to a BOC show. Not bad stuff mind you but things that make you turn to your buddy and ask... did I just see that???

I remember boc living up to the standard they always had, I wasnt really all that big a fan of reo at the time but i do remember them getting my attention when they played Riding the storm out.

I was just starting to get into Rush at the time and if my memory isnt to off it seems this was the 2112 tour they were on. I just remember that i was astonished the just 3 guys could make that much noise and for the life of me could not figure out where that skinny little dude playing the base {Geddy Lee} that was nearly as big as he was could have that amazing singing voice.

Great show, but i cant give you a definate date though, but i dont remember this being on a school night so I would venture to guess Fri or most likely Sat night cause where i worked i could work out fri or sat off but never both at the same time unless somebody died lol.

Heiko Klages

I have confirmation for the date of this show:

Date: Sunday, February 27, 1977
Venue: Omni
Attendance: 5,372
Gross: $38,259

Bands on the bill:

  1. REO Speedwagon
  2. Rush
  3. Blue Oyster Cult

Source: Billboard Magazine from March 12, 1977, page 88 - Boxoffice

Note: For Rush was it the "All The World's A Stage" Tour

Steve Pittard

BOC did in fact play a show in Atlanta, GA USA at the Omni in 77. I went to it and I do believe it was in February but don't know the date. It was a three band bill with REO Speedwagon opening for Rush who opened for BOC. Eric Bloom was vocal (no pun intended) about this gig being a "make up" for their waterlogged performance at Atlanta Stadium in August of the previous year that was plagued by heavy rains and delays.

However this Omni show was "on" and everything worked exceptionally well from the songs, musicianship, and the laser show. Highlights at this show were Astronomy and Then Came the Last Days of May both of which were played extremely well. While the accompanying laser antics to these songs were great, the musicianship stood on its own. Great BOC gig.

I'm pretty sure that there is YouTube footage of this leg of the tour (I don't know from what city) where Eric uses his laser ring during Astronomy.

As for the openers - REO was mediocre and I remember the house lights coming on during their set, which triggered a round of applause as we thought that meant that their set was over. No such luck. Rush came on next and turned in a solid set which was dominated by songs from 2112. It was clear they were on a path to success but, certainly in this case, they were no match for BOC.

Ken Welch

I would think that I would know the exact date for this show.

It was my first encounter with BOC and you might say it was my audition with them for the pyro that was to come later. I set off a concussion explosion in an empty hall (The Omni) that literally opened all the outside doors briefly from the pressure wave. The office people there at the Omni totally freaked out without any prior warning.

Rick Downey the lighting director at the time and the See Factor crew were not pleased when the light gels from the lights began raining down on the stage. Sandy Pearlman the manager, and the band loved it.

I started full time after the end of that tour, went into the rehearsal hall with the show and came out with what soon became the largest indoor pyro show in the world. Not even Kiss could top our pyro.

It was the start of the modern world of pyro as we know it today.

Yes the Atlanta show in the Omni changed my world and the world of pyro forever.

Robert P. Scheb

3-4-77: BOC appeared with Atlanta Rhythm Section - Rick Derringer opened (Rick's band was actually called "Derringer" back then). It was my first BOC concert.

I believe they opened with Stairway to the Stars and I remember that they played Sinful Love. Eric also road the motorcycle out when they played Born to be Wild. I think they had the lasers that year and of course all the other pyrotechnics. Great show!

Ken Goldfarb

I saw this show when I was a sophomore at University of Tampa.

They played E.T.I. and Astronomy. I will never forget Buck's white suit and the incredible guitar attack!!!

Easily one of the best shows of the hundreds I have seen. Thank you for such great memories.

Ralph

The above ticket appeared on eBay (March 2012) with a number of other tickets (not BOC) and all were said to be from Jacksonville FL venues. As the markings on the ticket matched others from the Veterans Memorial Coliseum, I have designated it as such.

Does anybody know if Rick Derringer and Atlanta Rhythm Section were also on this bill also?

Mitch Salisbury

I was at the Jacksonville gig with my brother just before I shipped out for Germany.

Rick Derringer and Atlanta Rhythm Section definitely played. I remember Rick saying he had a cold and the ARS did not impress. I think they had a hit then with "So Into You."

If memory serves, BOC was heavy with the Zilla strobe, laser and mirror ball that night.

8 March-31 May
BOC off the Road
Ralph

There would seem to have been no gigs from 8 March to 31 May due to the above ad - presumably from a trade publication - which has BOC trying to rent out their lighting rig during the downtime...

I can only presume the band were involved in Spectres-related pre-production work during this almost three month break, with selecting and recording of home-demos and the like.

Ralph

BOC had April off - presumably for Spectres-related pre-production work.

Ralph

May was presumably taken up with further Spectres-related preparatory work...

Again, I know there were no gigs during this month thanks to the above ad, but I did previously have word of a phantom BOC gig in St Paul, but see below for why that has been discounted.

Eric Hansen

I'm not sure BOC played this show... here is a poster and ticketstub, showing Rush headlining, with openers Styx, Starcastle and Max Webster:

Ralph

Thanks Eric - Did anyone go to this gig who might be able to shed some light on who actually played? My previous info was that it was BOC headlining with Rush in support, but Eric's evidence indicates otherwise...

Heiko Klages

I had the following confirmation from the Billboard Magazine, May 21, 1977 (Box office section) and Performance Newspaper (Rush special):

  1. Max Webster
  2. Starcastle
  3. Styx
  4. Rush

Attendance: 9,000 (BB) - 9,293 (PN)
Gross: $45,000 (BB) - $44,234 (PN)

BÖC did not play on May 6, 1977 in St. Paul, MN!

Frank Singel

Blue Oyster Cult played in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, June 14, 1977

Backup bands were Uriah Heap and the Dictators.

I was only in 6th grade, but I remember the band saying they were playing a song in concert for the first time, and that it would be on their upcoming album. The song was Godzilla.

Ralph

The official site had this gig listed as "Wendler Arena, Lansing MI" - and that's how I listed it also, lacking any evidence to the contrary.

One thing: I've noticed bootlegs available on the interweb for this date which are labelled "Lansing Civic Center", so I've always been a little confused over this one...

Bigcahuna72

Wendler Arena is in Saginaw, not Lansing, it was also known as the Saginaw Civic Center. It is now called the Dow Event Center.

I was at this gig, I'm pretty sure Nazareth was with BOC.

The Godzilla stage prop was awesome, I remember smoke shooting out its mouth, I was amazed for I was only 14 years old back then.

I have seen BOC many times since then. Most recently in 08 at the speedie fest in Aug in Binghamton, NY. It was a great show, it was my son Collins first concert, he was 6 years old.

I live in Florida, but as we travel around in the summer time we find ourselves at a BOC concert somewhere, which is fine by us. BOC rules, you guys always have!

Ralph

Some time after Bigcahuna72's post, I saw an ebay listing featuring a bunch of stubs and adverts etc - I cut them out of the larger photo - so the ticket especially is pretty small - the stub just has the date and no venue details, but the ad clearly says the gig was in "Metro Stadium, Lansing". The support acts were listed on the envelope that came with the stub.

So that's how I'm listing it now, and I can only conclude that Bigcahuna72's gig mentioned above must be from a different show - but which one?

Keith Johnson

I believe I was at this show, - well I know I was at the concert - just not sure of the date. Starz was the opening band followed by The Dictators and then BOC.

The concert didn't end until about 3am. There were long breaks between each band and the rumor was one of the bands was late to the arena.

The concert took place at Metro Ice Arena in Lansing Michigan. I went to 20 plus concerts at this venue in 76, 77 and 78. It closed up sometime in the 80's and was converted into retail space. It is now an MC Sporting Goods, a Chinese restaurant and a craft store.

Jim Ward

This gig was my first date with my wife of 36 years (next month).

Keith Johnson is incorrect about the location. Metro Stadium was just north of the short strip mall that still houses MC Sporting Goods, a buffet restaurant and one more retail store. That building could not possibly house an ice arena and concerts. It was an ice skating rink, among other things and probably closed in the early to mid-80s.

And also...it wasn't the Civic Center either. That was in downtown Lansing kitty-corner to the Capitol building, was demolished some 10 years ago for a modern gov building.

Starz is the only other band I remember being in that concert...would have remembered the Dictators but I'm not sure.

Tom Carnduff

Here's a ticket stub from Jun 16, 1977. BOC, with Utopia opening, played the Kitchener (Ontario, Canada) Memorial Auditorium.

I can't tell you that I remember a lot of details about the gig. I had been a casual fan since a friend introduced me to "On Your Feet.." album a couple of years earlier, but "Agents of Fortune" and "Reaper" was a monster.

I was a student at the University of Waterloo (Ontario) that summer. The school pub and the campus record shop sponsored a pinball contest. First prize was a copy of "Agents" and a commemorative t-shirt. I won the contest. Somewhere, I have still have the t-shirt. I'll take a scan for you when I get a chance to look for it. I already had the record, so I traded it for something else.

I came across your site while searching for scans of Van Halen tickets. My Van Halen stub site can be found here:

Please keep me in mind if you trip across any Van Halen items that I may be interested in.

Mark Donaghue

I had been a huge fan since my older brother got turned on to Secret Treaties (I was 12 and just loved "Bombers at 12 O'Clock High") I played them for a ton of people but it took "The Reaper" to turn them on.

This was our first chance to see them and 100's from Brockville went. They were AWESOME.

A show like many had never seen: Godzilla, The Harley, Buck playing guitar with an electric razor and That Awesome Laser Show.

They won many fans that night. I was like a proud parent. So many said "He can play guitar" but I loved them all the same!

They did the 5 Guitars and blew us out the doors !!! I think everyone went home and bought SPECTRES. BOC Rocks !!

Ralph

The official BOC site has two shows at Rich Stadium on Sunday 19th and Monday 20th June, yet all indications I have seen would seem to suggest that it was only a one-day event.

If it was just the one day, then the question remains - on which day of the two alternatives did the gig take place?

If anybody knows for sure, please let me know.

Ronald Binder

I accompanied BOC to a huge outdoor show in Buffalo, NY. At this stadium, BOC headlined over Lynyrd Skynard, Starz, and Ted Nugent. During the set, I helped with the special effects laser coming through the 30 ft. high GODZILLA head as the crowd went nuts.

Forget James Brown. The BOC road crew was the hardest working guys in show business. Sam Judd, Rick Downey, Ricky Reyer, Eric "E" Factor, The Geranios brothers, George and Tony did a fantastic job at the shows and were always fun to be around.

This gig took place in a small town outside of Buffalo, NY in front of about 30,000 fans. After the show, Eric and I went for pizza in the limo and Eric was still in his stage gear. We stopped at a pizza shop full of fans coming from the BOC show. When Eric and I entered, the noisy fans suddenly saw their jaws dropping as the lead singer of the band they rocked out to less than an hour ago was ordering pizzas with extra cheese before their eyes. The place fell dead silent in awe.

Ted Jackson

I don't know if it was a 2-day event, but I highly doubt it. Rich Stadium looked too good when we showed up for there to have been a show the day before, and too trashed after the show for another performance the next day. And who would have followed that lineup anyway?

Only way it was a multiple day show would have been if there were some 'smaller' acts the day before. I'm virtually certain it was just the one day, but the show started in the early afternoon, and continued well into the night...

And, Rich Stadium isn't the kind of venue that would lend itself to this kind of gig. I'm assuming you're thinking it was some kind of 'overnight' show where one entered the grounds and camped out? If that's the case then it's absolutely certain to have been one day. The only way they'd have done a multiple day show would have been for everyone to leave the grounds and come back the next day--a logistic nightmare...

Rich Stadium used to stage mammoth shows like this in the 70s, maybe 3 or 4 huge shows every summer, depending upon who was available to play. There hasn't been such a there in many years [as far as I know] Too bad because my wife has relatives about 2 miles from the place...

As to which day it was - definitely a Sunday. No way would they schedule a concert of that magnitude on a work day, and the traffic tie-ups would have been impossible...

Kurt Doehnert

I was there, and have part of my ticket stub - just like the one shown above. On the stub it says "Rain Date - June 20, 1977."

So I'm pretty sure it did not rain and the concert was actually on Sunday the 19th of June. So I'm guessing the BOC site also lists the rain date because obviously that date was reserved in case. Definitely was not a 2 day event.

Ernie Green

I was there, with about 10 friends from work. We were all around 18 years old, and it was definitely one day only. Sunday, June 19, 1977.

Those in attendance will never forget the day, especially crazy Ted Nugent jumping from the top of his speaker array, playing all the way down, and never missing a note.

I don't remember Ted being number 2, though - I think he was third in front of BOC...

David Bradley

I was at this show. I was 16 years old and it was my first major stadium show. I was a rock-n-roll novice, but wanted to take in as much as possible. The weather was a beautiful sunny day. We made our way to about the 30 yard line which was the appoximate distance to the center of the stage.

I remember a huge guy walking around with a jug in his hand yelling out, "Acid for Sale". I had barely started drinking and had smoked some weed to that point, so the mention of something harder made me nervous.

The following is the line-up as I recall it. Lynyrd Skynyrd started the show and we decided to see how close we could get to the stage. We made it all the way to the bouncer's barrier. I remember people being thrown over the barrier and back by the bouncers.

Skynyrd was the highlight of an amazing day with Sweet Home Alabama and Free Bird. I remember looking at Ronnie Van Zant and thinking "that guy means every word he sings".

Then Ted came on. He was a maniac and we kept our spots by the stage and kept on screaming.

Starz was next. They were okay, nothing memorable but good enough to make me check out an album later on.

A good break before BOC came out in the evening. They had their laser show going full force and it bounced off the entire open stadium seats. By that point half of the 30,000 were near passed out. It had been about 7 hours of solid partying.

It was the first of probaly half a dozen BOC shows I saw over the next 4-5 years. I later attended Oswego State which is about an 1.5 hour car drive from Watertown, NY where the band started. 2 of my buddies from freshman year knew the Bouchards and had attended the same high school.

Highlight of every show was always GODZILLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ralph

David gives a pretty different line-up from all previous indications I've had for this gig. Also, if you check out the ticket above, you'll see Skynyrd and BOC as the only named bands on the bill, so for Skynyrd to open - in front of Starz! - would seem to be pretty unusual.

Can anyone else who went confirm or deny that the order was in fact: Skynyrd/Ted Nugent/Starz/BOC?

Duke

I attended this show and can tell you with the most certain of clarity that some of the personal user accounts of what transpired at this concert are partially accurate, and some are (sadly) dead wrong.

The following account that I have provided for you is almost 100% accurate from multiple verifiable sources.

There was only one show, and that occurred on Sunday, the 19th of June, 1977. Any mention of a second date was purely and only for 'rain-date' type contingencies.

The day's lineup went as follows:

  1. Starz (1st opening act)
  2. Ted Nugent (2nd opening act)
  3. Lynyrd Skynyrd (3rd opening act)
  4. Blue Oyster Cult (headliner)

Concert notes:
Weather: Sunny and warm
Attendance: >30,000

Unique or notable occurrences:
During Ted Nugent's set, an acrobatically-inclined 'prankster' climbed upon the cable that holds a large net (used to keep football's from entering the seating area's of Buffalo Bills NFL football games) that stretches the width of the stadiums 'end zone' and traversed from one side of the stadium's width to the other, until security personnel were able to coax him down and take him into custody.

One of the last concerts that Lynyrd Skynyrd lead vocalist and founding member Ronnie Van Zant performed at, as he and other band personnel would meet an untimely death from a plane crash later that year on the 20th of October, 1977.

Blue Oyster Cult's laser and accompanying fireworks display for this particular show were touted as the 'worlds largest' over the amount of time that it transpired in.

Was the first year that this summer, outdoor concert series at Rich Stadium (in Buffalo, N.Y. suburb 'Orchard Park') was named 'Superfest', as the original name 'Summerfest' received copyright contention from a concurring concert series in Wisconsin.

David Gilmore

My brother and I were talking last night about concerts we've seen, I mentioned a great concert I attended in Buffalo, NY in the late '70s, he said "Why don't you look it up?".

So this morning I did some research, and after establishing the date and venue (June 19,1977, Rich Stadium, Orchard Park,NY), I ended up on your web site in the history section. After reading all the accounts of that day, I came to Duke's (above).

Duke's memory is very good, and recalled to my memory some of the details that were hazy. I was 19 years old, drinking heavily and smoking a lot of pot, so the details tend to fade after 34 years... I do remember that it was originally called "Summerfest" and then changed to "Superfest", it may have shown on the ticket as "Summerfest".

I went with 8 or 10 friends from work. I recall that you were allowed to bring in coolers as long as nothing was in glass bottles, so we lugged in a huge cooler full of beer, liquor, and even a watermelon filled with grain alcohol.

I was remembering it as a 2 day event for some reason, like some of the others, maybe because it was supposed to rain that day, or maybe just because we got there on Saturday. The lineup sounds right.

The part I remember best was during Ted Nugent's set when the crazy acrobat got on the wire going across the stadium. The guy went back and forth for what seemed like at least an hour while the cops at both ends tried to coax him down.

Ted was very pissed off, at one point stopping in mid-song to yell at the guy (something like "Hey, why don't you take over the show since everyone is watching you instead of me!"). He was right to be pissed, because all eyes were on the idiot about to fall to his death (he eventually gave up and was arrested).

I remember very little about B.O.C.'s set other than it was fantastic (we were all trashed by then) but I do remember the awesome fireworks display at the end. This was the best concert I ever attended, the last one I remember going to where you could drink and smoke and nobody messed with you or strip-searched you like they do now.

Bob Paxon

The Rich Stadium gig was an extravaganza with 4 bands... Besides the laser effects, there was a complete fireworks display as the show ended, I'm pretty sure it was at the end of BOC's closing set. Airplanes flew overhead trailing banner signs and maybe skydivers landed nearby?

The other memorable thing was that during Nugent's set some idiot climbed up a pole and shimmied onto a cable running from stage to soundboard. People were paying more attention to him than Nugent and he got real pissed about it. I kept wondering of he was gonna pull out his bow and pick him off.

Tony M

I was 17 and there. We stayed on the floor in front.

One day gig. Line up:

  1. Starz
  2. Nugent
  3. Skynrd
  4. BOC

Some info not previously covered:

Before Starz went on the roadie dropped one of Dube's drumstick over the barrier. I snatched it up and still have it. We then backed up about 20'.

Starz was a good band. Seen them already at a previous free concert. Very good first album, cool riffs, good singing. I really liked that band.

The wind really picked up before Nugent came on. They had to climb and cut off the tarp covering the stage because the wind was picking the stage up and moving it back. Also, the wind blew down some of Derrick St. Holmes amps. Yep, the heads and the top cabs went down. Ouch.

Saw a clog fly past us like a fast ball at full speed into the crowd. Man, I didn't want to make eye contact near that way because someone got really hammered with that...

When Nugent came on the place went wild. There was this plexi glass that for some reason, was fitted into the stage barrier top, front and center, maybe 2' and 8'. (So people in front could see better?) The people ripped it out, real acid energized happening . This is while Ted was playing. It was almost out of control. The people were responding to Ted like animals. This was right in front of us. We were youngin's compared to most people there so we were preparing for defensive action.

Skynrd was excellent. I remember the drummer was pissed and announced over the mike that "Some asshole just threw beer on my brand new drumset." Their plane crashed a few months later.

Right after Skynyrd this great looking chick is stumbling past us and she falls into my arms totally wasted. I didn't want her so I helped her up and around me. She made it a couple steps and puked. I remember the people yelling about that one. Don't know what happened to her...

BOC came on and it was a terrific show. Fantastic stereo sound, just great. The lasers was a whole new thing. Buck had one strapped to his arm.

I am not sure of the songlist here though. I swear they played Hot Rails to Hell. I remember being disappointed they didn't play some fav's. Red and Black and Dizbusters it may have been.

We never left our spot, never drank any liquids nor pissed the whole day, probably 10 or more hours in the beating sun. We stayed right there. Can't believe we did that. It was all non liquid party and an absolute great show. Still have my stub.

Miss the Summerfests...

Ralph

The official site has this gig down as the 23rd June - the stub evidence above says the 21st.

Also - here's an online blog by Paul Dorsey that also has this gig down as the 21st June:

It says: "With '(Don't Fear) The Reaper', the Cult seemed pretty cocky having someone like Todd Rundgren and Utopia open the show. Great double-bill."

He also has a master list of gigs he's seen which contains a stub from this show (also dated 21 June) here:

Obviously, until I know any better, I'm going to go with the visual evidence and the blog entry.

If you know any better, please get in touch...

Paul Dorsey

Regarding the date - I can't offer any more corroboration than my ticket stub, unfortunately (and you already have one of those) - other than recalling only two or three shows I ever saw that were postponed, and BOC wasn't one of them..

I was surprised from your tour itinerary that BOC were taking days off between shows; otherwise it would have been a simple matter of jumping from Buffalo to Toronto, schedule-proof-wise. Obviously they found other stuff to do between gigs. Must have been costly in terms of hotel bills!

Memory of the gig: I was shaking when Buck started the riff on "Reaper". I'd been listening to that tune almost daily for months.

Ralph

Or more likely, I only have a partial picture of that tour and I'm missing dates...

:-(

Paul Dorsey

Hard to believe BOC found somewhere else to play between Buffalo and Toronto on that tour, unless they had a gig in Hamilton, Ontario, or Niagara Falls!

Lots of bands just rolled from Maple Leaf Gardens straight to Rich Stadium or vice versa.

Mark Donaghue

I had seen the show in Ottawa and my Aunt offered to take me and my brother to TO for a few days. She was a perfect hostess and offered us a something special, I found out about BOC about 15 mins later. She said Why Not ? (she was a little concerned about the name)

We saw them twice in a week and if anything they were better. They talked about something happening in Buffalo and played extra songs for any Buffalo fans in attendance. I didn't complain!

I was a huge fan and may have been star struck but they were right on.

Ralph

I wonder what happened in Buffalo that would make them play extra songs for people who'd travelled up from there?

Dave

Godzilla was also in the setlist. I remember it quite well, the lasers started scanning at about 9 feet and higher up towards the walls and the laser display gave the impression that the walls were melting.

The real trip however was when Bloom came out in Astronomy. There were three large mirror balls hanging from the roof, the two outside were slightly smaller and I think were motorized. When bloom hit them with the lasers it looked like molecular rain.

It was one of the best concerts/shows I have seen.

Ralph

The only evidence I have for the existance of this show is the following blog post:

In case the above link dies at some future date, here's the relevant text:

From archival materials in my basement, I believe that BOC played at Treasure Island Gardens on Wednesday, June 22nd, 1977. The opening act was Todd Rundgren's Utopia.

A special feature of the show was the Cult's laser light show. Soon after it was banned during the U.S. tour for emitting excess radiation.

The encore was a great moment in pre-Spinal-Tap self-mockery. All five members were playing guitars and challenging each other, even the drummer. Someone likened it to a basketball game.

Last I heard, Eric Bloom is involved in some sort of car show.

I've since been contacted by Cameron Paton, whose recollection it was which which triggered the above blog post, and he confirms the above information and tells me that "the venue then known as Treasure Island Gardens is now known as the Forest City Velodrome, I believe".

Ralph

I only know of this gig's existance thanks to Richard Kolke's Saskatoon post below...

Bill Harder

The best I can pass along about this show is that it did indeed happen. I was 18 at the time and working in an all night diner across the street from the hotel they stayed in.

As I was living in a bubble and out of touch with almost everything, I wasn't aware of the show until the band came in for a bite, post concert. They came in with Utopia, of whom I recognized Kasim Sulton almost immediately and then Todd Rundgren sitting next to him. The Bouchard brothers and Eric Bloom were with them. I don't remember if Buck was with them or not, it was the 70's.

The best I can tell you about the gig itself came second hand. The report that I most recall was that Eric Bloom said unnice things about the promoter. The upshot of what I remember is that the venue sucked, to the effect that they would never play there again.

It was a new building at the time but as I well know, it was built for hockey and not concerts. I have never actually been to a concert at the 'Dome' that had better than fair sound quality.

I hope this helps.

Jeff Mosquito

I was at that show. Utopia opened - they were wearing white t shirts, black, skinny legged jeans and sneakers - they looked like the Ramones. Had never really heard of them, but liked their set anyway.

BOC came on. Sound quality in the Agridome was the usual level of mediocre, but the band was good and played well. I was standing maybe 20 feet from the stage, and noticed throughout the evening there was some kind of commotion right at the front of the stage. I think Eric Bloom made a comment about "some people acting like assholes" but it was hard to hear it due to the poor sound quality.

At the end of the set, the band left the stage and all the lights shut off completely. It was quite dark in there. Suddenly, somebody ran into me, and then somebody else came up and grabbed him and started a scuffle. Then the stage lights came up and in the middle of the crowd there was a bit of a clearing where a roadie was beating on this guy. "I didn't do it, man!" the guy said, so the roadie gave him a couple more shots and went back to the stage. There was a continued confrontation with a group down in front and the road crew - at one point the roadie just about launched himself back into the crowd was caught mid leap by another member of the crew. The house lights came up - no encore.

A guy I met a couple of months later told me he had a friend who was the limo driver who picked the band up after the show. His third hand report was that in the car after the show, the band called Regina "the asshole of the universe!" and they "would never play here again!"

All of which seems to fit the previous info. I know this doesn't say a lot about the band's performance, but I hope this helps.

Ralph

I can only assume that Utopia were also the support on this gig as the T-Shirt included with the above gigs refers to a "Canadian Tour". Therefore I'm assuming this show was a part of that tour, and I'm willing to bet there is at least one more gig to be uncovered - if not more...

NB:
Check out the stub for 15 July 1977 Lebanon Valley below. It's actually dated 28th June 1977 yet for the reasons stated below, I've attributed Lebanon Valley to 15 July.

Richard Kolke

I was at the show in Saskatoon on June 28, 1977. Utopia was indeed the backing band and the venue was the (now demolished) Saskatoon Arena.

If memory serves, this was the setlist:

  1. Stairway to the Stars
  2. Harvester of Eyes
  3. Buck's Boogie
  4. Cities on Flame
  5. ETI
  6. Astronomy
  7. Then Came the Last Days of May
  8. ME262
  9. Dominance and Submission
  10. Godzilla (Eric Bloom claimed it had only been played twice before)
  11. This Ain't the Summer of Love
  12. Guitar Medley/Born to Be Wild
  13. (Don't Fear) The Reaper

I was 16 years old and tickets were $6.50, General Admission. I camped out on the front steps of the Arena a few hours early and rushed to the stage as soon as the doors opened. I was front row center with my elbows on the stage for both Utopia and BOC.

To date, one of the best shows I have ever attended, although I remember being a bit disappointed that they didn't play Hot Rails to Hell.

I know that they also played a show at the Agridome in Regina, Saskatchewan the night before. Both Todd Rundgren and Eric Bloom mentioned it during the Saskatoon show.

Ralph

Again - I can only assume that Utopia were also the support on this gig...

Alan Wogberg

We had acquired killer floor seats for that one, row 3, dead center...

Yes, Utopia opened the show...I recall being disappointed, since Todd Rundgren didn't play any guitar, the entire show. The guys had their lasers and fog machines... They were awe inspiring! It was to be my first, of an easy dozen BOC shows, over the years.

Last night, on Rockline's Halloween Special [ 31 Oct 2012 ], I got to ask Buck and Eric about the inspiration behind, "She's as Beautiful as a Foot". Buck's reply was, "Richard Meltzer wanted to hear Les Braunstein sing those words..." That's mock'n'roll for you.

About a year ago, I contacted Joe Bouchard about purchasing his old, red, Guild Starfire bass... He was gracious enough to answer my email...

Thanks for asking about that bass. It sure was pretty. It was the first bass I owned, bought it at Manny's in 1968. My guitar teacher lent me the money to buy it. He wrote out a personal check to Manny himself. Didn't need to show id since his father was a long time Manny's customer.

When I joined the band to become BOC, the guys did not like the sound of the Guild bass (I think it still had flat wound strings on it) and they bought me the black P-bass I still have.

By the way, that beach was where I got the idea for the melody for Astronomy. I was a nice short walk from our rented house. The beach is now closed to the public.

I got an email from a writer a few years ago who was writing a book on famous beaches of LI and wanted to include stories from that beach.

Thanks for asking.
Joe

My reply:

Joe,
First of all, I really appreciate your time and consideration...

Great story about Manny's and your teacher's input! It didn't escape my geek-eyes, that your 1st bass had a Lesh/Casady/psychedelic factor! BOC's brilliant, self titled debut, is loaded with that very influence... I own a Darkstar loaded, Dearmond Starfire Bass, in the exact color...

Have you seen the recent movie Roadie, about a former BOC roadie... I really enjoyed its attention to detail, it's especially loaded with essential, Black & White era material...

I can understand their concern about substituting one of Leo's wound-up, solid bodies, though I prefer the earthy, woodiness of semis...

Those had to be precious times! Astronomy, (The Imaginos Tour, summer of '89...), ranks in my top 5, all-time BOC compositions... It's your first 4 albums that are my very favorites!

June '77, with Utopia and your fog and laser show... Floor seats, Row 3, Dead Center, was the first time... I've never been the same... I've always felt both Albert and yourself were one of the great unheralded, singer/composer/rhythm sections in rock history... CONGRATULATIONS!

I'll remember this and cherish it forever...

Ralph

Regarding that "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" story, Les himself says:

Meltzer is reputed to have written the BOC tune- "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" for me to sing and make a fool of myself, but I never heard the song while I was singing.

Now, the lines from Bark in the Sun - "You vomit slime, my armpits rhyme," that sounds like he was trying to make me sound stupid, but I loved singing the words.

When I was singing them I wasn't me, I was someone like a Blue Meany in Yellow Submarine singing to one of his Blue colleagues '"You vomit slime" (you're always spewing bullshit) "my armpits rhyme" (well, for my armpits to rhyme I must be some piece of mechanized artificial bullshit myself). That's fun. Thanks Richard.

By the way, I would have enjoyed singing She's as Beautiful as a Foot. Listen to this.....

"She's as beautiful as a foot. She's as beautiful as a foot. She heard someone say, the other day."

OK, that's got humor and pathos too. I think I'm as beautiful as a foot, because I heard someone say it the other day. So that's where I get my information, I overhear it. Kind of like Shakespeare when he says " the world is too much with us." So there I am in my head actually comparing Meltzer to Shakespeare. And the 'She' part is kind of lovely. I could choose to see it as a hidden sign of affection. Think how annoyed Meltzer would be by that.

But I think most of his lyrics were just about life in general and he wrote them about the world he was seeing, gave them to Albert and Donald and forgot about them till they re-appeared as a song.

Paul Rosenblatt

July 14 1977 Bridgeport with UFO: This is one of my all-time favorites. Had the full laser show, testing it out before world tour. played Godzilla before Spectres was released.

Chuck Evans

I've sent you a copy of my stub from the July 14, 1977 show at the Bridgeport CT Jai-Ali fronton (possibly the weirdest place ever to have a rock concert) which also featured UFO (without Michael Schenker) as the opening act.

The weird thing about the Jai Lai fronton gig was that they were set up basically on the jai alai court, which, if you know about those courts, they are made of solid granite, including a huge granite wall at the back. I don't know how they ever managed to dampen the echo from it.

This was the first show where I heard them play Godzilla. In fact, I think they announced it as a brand new song before they played it.

Scott Fritz

This was the first BOC show that I went to and the first thing I remember about this show was that the Hells Angels were BOC's security that day guarding the line with motorcycles as the people went in!!! No one dared get near the bikes!!

The show started out with the same voice as the first live album saying to the packed house, "On your Feet or on your Knees", here they are from NYC, the Amazing Blue Oyster Cult!!!! The lazer show was awesome and I also remember Eric saying that they had a new album coming out and then they ripped into Godzilla!! I KNEW that song was gonna be a big hit.

I also remember hearing them playing lots of stuff off the first 3 albums and most of songs off of Agents which was just released.

Songs I remember hearing were: Morning Final, Tenderloin, Cities, Hot Rails to Hell, Mazerati GT, Before the Kiss, Reaper, and they rocked on 5 guitars.I think Allen even sang True Confessions during this show.

All of the seats in the house were good and the show was one of the best I have ever seen in my life!!!

I even bought my two 4 inch diameter black Kronos pins during this show which I still have! This show still ranks as one of my top 3 shows.

Mike Toronto

I was also at this show. I had seats left of center on the aisle in row 3.

I was taking pictures when I felt a very large hand on my shoulder. Just as I thought my Minolta was going to get shoved where the sun doesn't shine, the Angel asked if I wanted to go right up front! Naturally I said yes and he took me right up to the rail and let me shoot almost a full roll.

I couldn't believe it! Absolutely one of the best shows I have ever seen!!!

Joe B

i was at this concert my 19th birthday our seats were right up front... BOC - what a show!

i thought the HUNS MC was the security... whoever they were, there was no trouble... Great show!

James Puzio

I was at this show. UFO opened and I remember Phil Moog their lead singer taking his microphone, opening the zipper of his jeans and placing it in there for about 5 seconds.

We got there early and was able to hear the soundcheck because they left the loading area door to the outside was open. Allen was playing the song "The Entertainer" which was featured in the movie "The Sting".

BOC was escorted into the area by The Huns MC of Conn... Not The Angels as noted by someone else. There was a moment during Buck's solo when he had an E-Bow. To by homage to the bikers he began to make his axe wail and cry. His feedback sounded like when you shift gears. Incredible display of mastery of the guitar.

Yes, they played Godzilla and I believe Golden Age of Leather as well... Great Show

Ralph

I realise the ticket stub above on the left - kindly sent to me by John Berry - would seem to be dated 28 June but Black Oak's Andy Tanas sent me a detailed list of every show they did with BOC on this tour and his information has proven to be so reliable that I'm willing to disbelieve the evidence of a printed stub date in favour of his notes.

Also - I now think that the 06/28 is the purchase date!! On this stub layout, the actual show date would follow the time (well, it would if it wasn't ripped off...)

Stop Press: Jim Donaldson has now sent me a ticket (see above) dated 15 July 1977 plus Brendan Flynn has sent a poster also with that date on - so that would seem to sort that one out. See - I knew I was right to trust Andy Tanas's dates...

NB:Incidentally, Andy Tanas tells me that the Black Oak/BOC tour was billed as the "Black & Blue" Tour, so think again if you thought that this was an 1980s idea.

Also - one thing that puzzled me was when did "Black Oak Arkansas" become simply "Black Oak"? Andy explains: "The "Arkansas" was dropped from the name when "Race With the Devil" came out in September of 77. Management did this because they wanted a fresh start for Jim Dandy and the new band."

John Berry

In reviewing your show list, I realized you don't have Lebanon Valley Speedway in Lebanon Valley NY from summer of 77, I was at this show and I know the Dictators played also, the reason I remember it is because they played a new song for us and shot the lazers off a huge mirror ball in the middle of the crowd. The song was Godzilla, Spectres wasn't released yet.

J. Giels also played at Lebanon Valley that night in 77, I knew there was four bands so it was Dictators, Black Oak Arkansas, J .Geils and BOC.

Wally J. Corpse

7-15-77: BOC, J.Geils, Black Oak Arkansas...

Some fat chick squatted down in front of me and whizzed on my foot, which I then placed at the base of her spine and helped her become prostrated in the pee-pee mud. Blue blotter...

Jim Donaldson

I have a ticket stub dated July 15, 1977. I was 15, down from Canada visiting my cousin in Boston.

Bad sound, Great time.

Brendan Flynn

Hey there, great site. My name is Brendan Flynn from Massachusetts, US. I'm 29 years old and have been listening to BOC since I was 12 or so.

I have always heard stories about the 'Black And Blue' tour coming to Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, NY (outside of Albany). The speedway is a pretty grim looking dirt track in the middle of nowhere, which hosts stock car racing every Saturday night in the summer.

I have often questioned older guys about that night with BOC and Sabbath. I have always been told there was lots of LSD use, Hell's Angels, and even 2 or 3 deaths.

I am a demoliton derby driver at Lebanon Valley Speedway. Last night, a friend and I went to the race track to watch and drink some beer. I had to talk to the owner of the speedway to ask him a question about an upcoming event. I talked to some girl who works there, and she took me back into the office area, where I had never been.

She told me to wait as she went into the other room. On the wall were numerous racing pictures, posters, old schedules. As I'm looking around, I see this poster (attached) on the floor under a desk. I asked the girl if I could have it and she said "yes". After some research on your site, I have determined that it is from July 15, 1977. I hope that this is of any value to your cause.

Gerald LeBlanc

Me and Blair hitchhiked from New Britain Conn. that summer to visit my parents in Montreal and we stopped to see the BOC on the way.

I don't recall witnessing any violence but I remember being amazed that they would haul the laser light show out in to the middle of nowhere.

We camped in a field next to the speedway and next morning we went scavenging on the site.

I'll never forget the sight of all those empty beer cans, as far as the eye could see. Too bad there weren't any deposit laws back then.

Wally J. Corpse

7-16-77: BOC, REO Speedwagon, Argent...

My pal, also my lawyer's dad, Ernie the attorney, came along and began to act oddly after inhaling some ignited herbal substance from Acapulco, standing on his seat yahooing during 'Hold Your Head Up'. Heh, heh, heh.

Michael Rodrigues

Just stumbled upon your great gig and set list site.

FYI 7/16/77 - I attended this show at the Cape Cod Coliseum. Argent definitely did not play. Starz, then REO opened.

Ralph

Can anyone else confirm that it was indeed Starz who opened?

Jim and Donna Avila

Absolutely was Starz. General Admission show. Huge floor crowd. My first BOC show. I slithered my way right to the front. Awesome.

Eddie

Starz i remember, Argent i do not.

Reo is right and BOC was on fire, though 10-16-76 at the music hall w/Boston opening was better, imho

frank69zappa

Argent did not play the show that Starz opened...

What happened in August? If you know, please let me ...

Kenny Welch

August was spent in the rehearsal hall (an old off line water treatment plant) in Brookhaven, NY.

We were getting ready to take the all new show on the road.

Any gigs in September? If you know, please let me ...

Ralph

I've had to revise the date on this show (above) due to the stub sent by Joe Schmidt - I originally had this show dated as around mid March 1978 - my best guess - then - being 16 March 1978.

Here's the story: I first heard of a Utica show with BeBop Deluxe when I saw the following text on a 'memorabilia for sale' site: "Ticket Stub: 3/17/78, Utica, NY with BeBop Deluxe Rare! VG+ $8".

Unfortunately, there was no jpeg with the advert - just that line of text. Anyway, I had a date - or so I thought - but no venue name, so that's how I posted it. Then I got an email from David Tyler (see below) which confirmed the Utica gig took place, but didn't explicitly confirm the date as the 17th March - just that he thought it was 15 or 16 March.

BTW: I subsequently received a confirmed ticket stub for 17 March 1978 for a show in Syracuse, which definitely ruled THAT date out for a Utica gig but didn't help me narrow down the ACTUAL date.

Here's David's email which I originally had attached to a March 1978 gig entry:

David Tyler

I helped set up for this gig. It was at the Utica Memorial Auditorium - March 15 or 16, 1978.

A little known fact was that Be Bop Deluxe did not play that night as they didn't have their instruments due to a trucking accident - it overturned and they couldn't play the show. I believe they were coming from Michigan.

They had the album Life in the Air Age and it was big on FM. The leader of the band, Bill Nelson, got up in front of approximately 7,000 people to explain his dilemma. He said something I will never forget! I paraphrase;

"We had this truck accident earlier today and our instruments were destroyed in the process. BOC was kind enough to offer a spot in their set; however we would need to teach them more than three chords to play with us!"

Yikes, I about fell over! BOC has written some fairly complex songs and the comment didn't seem appropriate. I am not sure if BOC ever heard what was said.

This gig was at the height of BOC's career here in Central New York. They played here many times, but this was a packed house.

If my recollection is correct, they sold out the venue, approximately 7,700 seats. It was General Admission and the front of the stage area was like a mosh pit.

I think they had crude lasers for that show which was a BIG deal at that time. I never saw as many Marshall Amps as I did that night, until the metal bands of later years. Buck played his faithful white SG for most of the gig.

The Bouchard bros were in the band at that time and the overall performance was very good. They did some great songs, I can't remember them all, but they did Born to be wild, ME 262, Then came the last days of May (my favorite that night), Don't Fear the Reaper, etc.

Eric was fantastic and Alan was his usual eclectic self.

Lots of drinkin' and smokin'. One fun night for a kid who loved BOC. I set up for them about 10 or 11 times via Cedric Kushner concert promotions. I have a set of autographs from them as well.

Joe Schmidt

October 7, 1977, Utica Memorial Auditorium. Be Bop Deluxe did not play that date; their equipment never got arrived. I have the ticket stub and t-shirt from the gig.

Ralph

Now this sounds like the gig David was describing, but clearly there's a date discrepancy so I followed it up with Joe...

Joe Schmidt

There was no gig in Utica in March 1978. Like I said, I have the the ticket stub from the Oct 7, 1977 gig. I would not have missed any show that took place at that time.

The recollections above were from the Oct. 7 1977 gig. I remember clearly that when Be Bop Deluxe made that wise crack, a rather large man in front of me raised his middle finger in response to the band. My friend got a Buck Dharma guitar pick at that show.

The gig was definitely Fall 1977, I was a junior in high school. It was my first concert. They were still using the lasers and during the opening number, "Stairway to the Stars," Eric Bloom, resplendent in leather jacket, slowly raised his arm and fired a laser at a mirror ball.

During the solo to "Don't fear the Reaper" the white-suited Buck Dharma stood as the fog grew around him and lasers shot through the fog.

Jill Atwood

I remember the 10/7/77 show in Utica pretty well. We arrived early, general admission, but there was a lot of pushing and shoving when the doors opened, and we didn't want to get trampled in the rush so seats weren't that good. The Aud was packed - really hot and smokey.

After 90 minutes, Be Bop Deluxe announced they had cancelled, and the crowd was really agitated. The Aud "security" had pretty much vanished. The overhead lights kept going off and on. As somone else mentioned, there was alot of smoking and drinking. It looked like some sort of melee down on the floor, a brawl or something.

Then the show started - sudden burst of silver white light, opened with Stairway to the Stars. I had seen BOC before, but not with the lasers. They did a few new songs off Spectres, Godzilla for certain, possibly Goin thru the Motions. They did Cities on Flame, also I am positive they did The last Days of May. It seemed like they did an extra long set. Encore was Reaper.

I bought the Spectres album when it came out, like a month later. About 5-6 years after that, I was looking at the back of the album cover one day and noticed a little comment - said if you would like the lyrics, send 50 cents with your info, and it gave an address. So I put a half dollar coin in an envelope along with my info and mailed it out. And about 3 months later, the lyrics arrived! I still have them some place, probably tucked inside the album. Spectres is still one of my favorites, listen to it all the time (but on CD these days).

Mark Saleski

The other day, while dusting off the cobwebs on some memories of life in the 1970's (the ZZ Top post), I got to thinking about my first time.

My first 'real' rock concert experience, that is.

Mine was back sometime in the winter of 1977. The place was the Augusta Civic Center, Augusta, Maine. The band was Blue Oyster Cult. Looking back on it, the experience was both funny and surreal.

Funny because I couldn't drive yet. So my parents had to drop me and my friend Cindy off in front of the place (I think they spent the next four hours hanging out at a Howard Johnsons).

Surreal because, for some insane reason, the Civic Center staff opened only one set of doors off to the left of the main entrance. The result was predictable: a huge crowd smoooshing up against the wall near those doors.

Surreal because me & Cindy got pinned between the crowd and that wall. I got a little freaked out. Cindy got a sprained arm.

Funny because I had never seen so many freaks assembled in one location. Gees, it was like a circus.

Funny and surreal because I'd never seen guys peeing in bathroom sinks before.

Surreal because this was the first time I'd experienced rock music at that volume. The first time you hear a kick drum through a big PA like that the resultant 'slam' is a little bit nauseating.

Funny because, when they announced the warmpup band (Be Bop Deluxe), I thought that Blue Oyster Cult wasn't able to make it and this was our substitute. Hey, nobody ever told me about this warmpup act stuff!

Surreal because this was the first time I'd ever smelled pot smoke...and let me tell you, back in the 70's they used to spark up a whole lotta the demon weed at concerts!

Surreal because Blue Oyster Cult was touring on the Spectres album. This meant that they had an enourmous light show with wrist-mounted lazers, lazers shooting up from the stage and, coolest of all, a lazer show (during "Godzilla") that literally filled the volume of the arena with white lazer beams. I remember having to look straight down with my eyes protected by both of my arms. (It wasn't too long after that that they had to tone down the show for safety reasons).

Funny because me and Cindy got up to leave when the band left the stage for the first time. We actually did leave...and never heard them play "Don't Fear The Reaper". Hey, nobody ever told me about this 'encore' stuff!

So that's it. Mom and dad were waiting outside. They drove us home while we marvelled at the ringing in our ears, that amazing (and somewhat painful) light show and just how bad our clothes reeked of pot smoke.

Ralph

My source for this date is the WLS Musicradio playlist (dated Oct 15 1977):

Robbie Cube

Digging through my archives of Dictators shows, I came across one labeled October 12, 1977 at the Hammond Civic Center. The date may be off by a couple of days, but I'm sure the Dics, touring on their second album, "Manifest Destiny", opened for BOC.

No mention of the headliners in the 37 minute set, though.

Ralph

I suppose it's possible - the WLS lists above could be out by 2 days, and the Dictators are down as playing Hammond on the 12th on this list:

Plus BOC shared a bill with them on 10 Oct at Rockland, so the two bands would be approximately adjacent, geographically speaking.

Does anyone know for sure?

Tim Shockley

I saw Blue Oyster Cult at the Civic Center, Hammond, Indiana with the Dictators on 10/14/77.

Ralph

OK - there's a stub now for this show - you can't see the actual date but you can see it's "Friday" so that makes it pretty likely that it was on the 14th as the 12th was a Wednesday...

Downloaded1

Dictators opened
Ram Jam cancelled
B.O.C. anniliated
i was second row general admission.

Ralph

Check out a page of photos from this show on the regionrockmemories.com site:

One point about this show: I've just seen the first sentence of a piece from The Chicago Tribune (28 Sept 1977) which read: "The October 4th Blue Oyster Cult concert has been moved from Oak Brook to Hammond, Ind."

So it looks like it was originally scheduled to be on a different date in a different place!

Ralph

As Ram Jam cancelled the night before, does anybody know if they played this gig?...

Jim Hemphill

You asked whether anyone knows if Ram Jam played this gig, as they had apparently cancelled the night before.

I was there. Ram Jam definitely played.

Cheap Trick went on first and did a very short set, followed by Ram Jam, then BOC.

Great show all around.

Nice job on the site. Found it while I was searching for Cheap Trick info. This was my first of about 25-30 Cheap Trick shows. Couldn't remember the date - turns out it was 2 days after my 17th birthday.

Ralph

The Billboard info above reckons "Prism" opened, and not Lake, as I currently have it. Does anyone know for sure?

Tim Betthauser

Spectres Tour in La Crosse, WI on Oct. 20, 1977 - (the day of the Lynyrd Skynrd plane crash), I can confirm the openers were Black Oak and Cheap Trick...

Animaux

21 Oct 1977 Brown County Coliseum Green Bay Wisconsin: the opening act was Lake, 2nd group was Cheap Trick! Cheap Trick was touring on their "In Color" album

BOC's laser show was SPECTACULAR!

It was my first ever concert... and you never forget your first.

Ralph

Ken Welch's Hall Report for this gig has Black Oak down as the scheduled second band but Animaux's account - as well as the Billboard info - above seems pretty certain that is was Cheap Trick.

Cosmo

I noticed for the Friday October 21, 1977 show in Green Bay Wisconsin you list the venue as Brown County "Coliseum". To the best of my knowledge it was never called a coliseum, at least not since the mid to late '70s on. It was and still is today called the "Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena".

As for the Cheap Trick/Black Oak controversy, I really can't help you here as both bands were commonly touring as back-up bands in our area around this time.

Dan Helmbrecht

I saw a gig not on your list. The date was Saturday, October 22, 1977. The concert was at the Riverside Ice Arena in Austin, MN (thats where they make Spam). The opening groups were Lake and Black Oak. This was my first BOC concert and was on the Spectres tour. This was also during the laser days.

I have the concert ad and review of them when I saw them two months later at the Civic Center in St. Paul, MN. It's a very good review of the concert.

I don't remember a lot about the concert except for the laser show. I had been a fan since OYFOOYK came out and BOC was one of my top 5 favorite bands at the time. All I remember about the laser show was seeing 3 dimensional squares and rectangles being rotated off the far wall. You could see all the lines of the box and watch it rotate.

The best part of the show was when shined one of the lasers on the prom ball. I had been to many concerts where they would shine a light at the prom ball and you would see all the reflecting lights rotate around the concert hall. This was different.

I don't know if this is because of the condition I was in but when the laser hit the prom ball you could actually see the reflecting light coming at you. It's hard to describe but it's like driving in a heavy snowstorm and you turn your bright lights on. You could actually see the ray of light coming at you before it hit you. I remember ducking out of the way a few times.

Rob Penkwitz

I had 4th or 5th row seats for this show.

First band up was Prism. I believe these guys were touring on the album "See Forever Eyes". Not a bad opening act that sounded pretty much like Styx. Not bad musicians, but nothing great either. Lead Singer, Ron Talbek, was dressed in black leather and looked pretty cool and delivered some decent vocals.

Then Black Oak hit the stage. These guys were touring on the "Race with the Devil" album. Jim Dandy Magnum IS Black Oak. Despite his great stage presence and great looks, Black Oak's musical delivery was somewhat disappointing. To make matters worse, Tommy Aldridge was no longer drumming for them.

Finally, BOC came out and played. They were riding high the success of "Agents of Fortune" and were touring on the musically strong "Spectres" Album. Excellent laser light show that must have cost them a fortune to take on the road!!

Their musicianship and songwriting capabilities were in fine form at that time. In fact, my opinion is that they never reached this performing and songwriting height again.

Unfortunately, I saw BOC several times after that and they just were never as good as when I saw them on both the "Agents of Fortune" and "Spectres" tour. I believe that this is due to the fact that both Albert and Joe Bouchard left the band and Donald (Buck Dharma) Roeser never really improved as a musician. After hearing people like Tony MacAlpine, Yngwie Malmsteen, etc, I basically thought Buck Dharma lacked serious technical abilities on the guitar.

Ralph

Ken Welch's Hall Report for this gig has Lake down as the opening band but Rob's account above seems pretty definite that is was Prism.

Stop Press: I've since read a review of this show in the 25 October 1977 edition of the Milwaukee Sentinel which confirmed that Prism did in fact open this show.

Sport

The date you have is correct with Black Oak and Prism. I know we were in third row and Black Oak being very good.

BOC played:

  1. Stairway
  2. Harveter
  3. Celestial the Queen
  4. Cities
  5. ETI
  6. LDOM
  7. R U Ready 2 Rock
  8. Dominance
  9. ME262
  10. Godzilla
  11. TATSOL
  12. BTB
  13. Encore: REAPER
Ralph

Gig was rescheduled for 8 Jan 1978 - all tickets for this 27 Oct show were honoured at the 1978 show...

Bert Gangl

The Oct 28, 1977, Bowling Green show was held on the campus of Western Kentucky University, as verified in the 1978 issue of the WKU yearbook, The Talisman.

However, only Black Oak Arkansas and the Charlie Daniels Band played WKU on that date. Blue Oyster Cult, for whatever reason, did not appear.

Ralph

Thanks for that info, Bert. That makes sense as this gig was not included in roadie Ken Welch's list of hall reports...

Ralph

Well, the poster above says "Axis" opened, but Ken Welch's Hall Report for this gig has "Bliss" down as the opening band...

Richard Galbraith

Bliss was a Tulsa band, Larry Shaeffer/Little Wing would sometimes have them open for some of the larger shows, they also did some of the Rainbow dates in Okla and Shreveport as well as the Sex Pistols when they played Cains Ballroom in tulsa.

Ralph

Here's a link to a photo of Bliss, which it says is from their opening slot in Tulsa 77 to "for Blue Oyster Cult, Black Oak Arkansas, REO Speedwagon":

REO Speedwagon??!!

John E. Holmes

The Blue Oyster Cult and Black Oak invaded Memorial Coliseum last night in the second sold out concert in a week and proved why theyre touted as two of Americas most improved bands.

Black Oak, with four new members but led by the inimitable Jim Dandy Mangrum, took the stage first and motored through an impressive 10-song set which displayed the best of both its worlds. Previously regarded as the worlds foremost raunch and roll band, Black Oak is now a tight, straight forward band with as much or more finesse as any other high-energy act around. Mangrum and guitarist Jimmy Henderson have surrounded themselves with four of Memphis better musicians and the rise in musical quality is almost amazing.

New guitarists Jack Holder and Greg Reding blend right in with Henderson, swapping leads and fighting guitar duels, while the new rhythm section of bassist Andy Tanas and drummer Joel Williams build a rock-steady platform on which the music is built. During the set, Black Oak proved they could still rock with anyone, especially on some of its older songs like Great Balls of Fire and Hot And Nasty, which is exactly as its title suggests.

But the truly impressive part of Black Oaks snow is the brand new material found on its latest album, Race With The Devil. Throughout the evening, Black Oak played five of the eight songs on the album, all with a mixture of flair and Southern-fried energy. The new, improved Black Oak sounds lean mean and hungry. All the fat has been trimmed away leaving a tight, heady outfit with a new direction and some straightforward ideas on how to get there. Basically, the reason the old band was dissolved in favor of this new one is that its members were getting complacent about putting their hearts into the music and Mangrum just couldnt live with that. So it was onward and upward and if last nights show was any indication of what Black Oak is now capable of, the skys the limit.

The Blue Oyster Cult hit town with a brand new album and one of rocks finest light shows, both of which were fairly impressive last night. The Cult has also undergone some musical direction changes recently. Though the music was softened up a bit for Agents Of Fortune  the new material is a cross between this softness and the old blitz-rock of earlier days.

But strangely enough, the highlights of BOCs set were the old standards. The group played three songs from its very first album, including the opener, Stairway To The Stars and the murderous Cities On Flame, which featured some lightning from lead guitarist Donald Buck Dharma Roeser. The third oldie, Then Came The Last Days May, featuring an extended guitar solo, revealed the first major operation of the Cults infamous laser light show. As the sharp green laser beams reflected off strategically located mirror balls, the Cult got hotter and hotter, culminating in three monster songs which made a good show almost great. The thumping Godzilla featured more extended guitar work and long drum solo by Albert Bouchard made worthwhile by the lasers and strobes. Albert teamed with brother Joe Bouchard on bass to power the group through Summer Of Love into a searing, lasered, strobed firebombed climax of Born To Be Wild.

BOC returned for an encore of Dominance And Submission but didnt totally satisfy until playing Dont Fear The Reaper, its number one single of 1976. The Cults light show was impressive and the music itself isnt bad, but the major complaints against the band remained valid last night. They can get a littler boring by extending things too long at times, and they have no stage show at all. There really isnt even much energy flowing up there. They were good no doubt about that, but with a little work this show could be one of the best.

The Corpus Christi Times, November 1, 1977

Ralph

Carvin Boy off the BDTE went to this gig and says "Nosferatu" was played.

I mentioned to him that this was remarkable because - according to Bolle Gregmar - BOC only EVER played Nosferatu live at a handful of gigs in 1978 (eg Johnstown) and never in 1977. I asked him was he sure it was played at THIS gig?

He said he was.

So - anybody else go to this show?

Ralph

Check out the two different ticket layouts above - can anyone explain why they're so different?

Bill Bloc

Hey - went to this show when I was a 16 year old kid. My brother and two other friends piled into my old '59 Hillman (how many guys in Texas drove a Hillman, by the way?). The way I remember it was there were actually 4 bands on the show. Three bands were announced as the lineup but when we arrived there was a fourth band that no one had ever heard of blowing away the crowd. They were called Cheap Trick. I don't remember who was the supposed #3 on the bill, it might've been Ram Jam. But #2 was Black Oak Arkansas and then BOC was headlining.

Because of the extra act and laser show BOC did not exit the stage until about 1:30am. I thought we were going to be in deep trouble as we didn't get home until about 2am and it was a school day the next morning.

Fun times...

Ralph

Looking at the first of the handbills above (the red one), it seems Wishbone Ash were originally scheduled to be the support for this gig.

Harley

The best time I think I had at a BOC gig was at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas '77. When you are 17 and in Las Vegas for the 1st time, it's quite a thrill. There was Pot, Girls, Booze, Mushrooms and prolly coke. Hell I can't remember. LASERS!! One thing I will always remember is Eric introducing a song. He said "The next song is about a desert" and I thought for sure Death Valley Nights was coming but instead it was Golden Age. Love them both so no matter.

Ralph

The official site has this gig down as "Tucson Arena" yet the stub says "Community Center"...

Roguedance

The name of the arena was called the Tucson Community Center. I was 14, and there, and it rocked!!!

John Worthington

For two years in a row Blue Oyster Cult put on two of the best shows I have ever seen in my life. In 1976 they were playing in the Seattle Center Arena, with Bob Seger and Commander Cody. This show featured more songs off of the on your feet on your knees album. I thought that Donald Buck Darma was the best guitar player on the planet at the time.

I was looking for them the next time around the following year and they came with black oak, and rail for the spectres concert.

The part I will never forget was when Bloom kept pointing into the crowd during Harvester of Eyes, and hitting people with this laser light while the whole place had these dots on the wall spinning around. during Godzilla there was a Hologram of this big godzilla head and a red tongue.

During Born to be wild they crossed guitars. Golden age of leather was awesome and has since become my second favorite behind I aint got you, mazerati gt.

I will always remember having to go to the bathroom but I was afraid I was going to miss something, and it seemed as if they were never going to stop playing.

I waited until the encore was over before I finally went.

To this day those two shows rank as the best all time shows I have ever seen.

The following year they came with Pat Travers (at the Coliseum) and I was not as satisfied without the spinning dots and laser show.

I have never seen a better rock and roll show than the two I saw blue oyster cult perform in 1976 and 1977 in the Seattle Center arena.

The thing I remember about both shows was not being able to look away for a whole show.

The agents of fortune show was some of the best guitar work I have ever seen. The Spectres show was that same guitar work with an incredible laser light show with laser projections on smoke.

Rail opened - Rail does a good sweet madam blue Styx cover, and some Nugent covers. The Spectres show had a lot more life to it from begining to end.

Black oak was a lot more rowdy with Jim Dandy displaying more character than musical talent. he was weak on the washbord, and they played everything in abreviated medleys...

Halls of carmen was diluted into a medley as was his washboard songs. Blue oyster always had something to look for. from crossing guitars to the whole band playing guitars to spots all around and on everyone you looked at.

I have always felt any other show I went to was sub par after that. I think I was treated to a motivated buck, for those two years. He seeemed endless and effortless.

After that he just seemed to fall off every year after those two. The guy was the best guitar player I have ever had the pleasure of watching, particularly those two shows.

BOC taught me a valuble lesson. Go to the bathroom before they start playing at all cost, even if you have to pee in a cup if the cans are full. The Godzilla cartoon projection on smoke was amazing

I wrote to David Infante, the laser guy to ask if what I'd seen was a Godzilla hologram and he responded: "No it was a scanner cartoon projection on smoke! Thanks for the compliment! Yeah, laser shows haven't been the same - Maybe I will do one more before I pass on! lolol..."

Ralph

John says he thinks this gig took place at the Seattle Center Arena, and not the Coliseum. Given that BOC were at the top of their drawing power and that the Arena - apparently - has only half the capacity of the Coliseum, this would seem odd.

Does anybody else have any feedback on this?

John Eiken

The gig was in the Arena - I do remember the show and did some checking. The Seattle Supersonics had a home game that night, hence The Arena.

The description of the concert is good though - and I have to agree that BOC was at the top of their game at that time...

Steve Klein

Nov. 23, 1977 show played at the Jackson County Expo in Medford, OR. Attached concert poster photo confirms this.

Andy Tanas

Black Oak supported BOC at Salt Lake City on 11/25 with Sammy Hager

Bob Sabo

I could have sworn it was REO Speedwagon rather than Sammy Hagar that was on the bill. A friend of mine and I were discussing this the other day and I am sure of Black Oak Arkansas, hell I even remember the girls name that I took to the concert, but I don't remember Sammy Hagar...

But then, like they say, "If you remember the 70's you weren't there". Class of 77 rules!

Tommie Gallegos

That was my first Concert at age 12 in Salt Lake City. Yes it was definitely Sammy Hagar opening up for them for about 20 minutes. Black Oak next and of course Blue Oyster Cult. What a awesome experience!!!

I remember United Concerts as the promoter. BOC announced they were recording the show for a live album, which of course made the crowd roar.

Although they did not take any cuts from Salt Lake City for Some Enchanted Evening, I remember the anxiety of waiting for that album.

Brent Wright

Headed down from Fort Collins, Co with some of my fraternity buddies to see this show. I had been a hardcore BOC fan for several years since the San Diego Golden Hall show in '74.

This was the height of BOC's laser shows and the crowd went absolutely bonkers when Eric's famous logo guitar produced the wicked lasers which bounced off a hanging ball in the middle of the arena.

Great show but nothing ever compared to the Golden Hall show and I have now seen them at leased a dozen times.

Don Cheney
Jon

My wife Sue and I were married on April 6, 1977, and this was our first concert together - Sue had seen them previously at her first concert in San Jose in 1975 at the San Jose Civic.

Bought tickets at The Broadway, Ticketron. Black Oak Arkansas opened for BOC in Long Beach...

I do remember someone throwing up a couple seats over from us and that the laser effects were awesome, I can still see the guy that upchucked just staring at the lasers, mesmerized... Ahhhh, great times...

I remember the Kronos being projected on the side of the arena as we were walking in from the parking lot, was cool. Can't recall the set, so must have been a good show but I remember that we were in the mezzanine on Buck's side. I know my ears were ringing afterward.

Go Jim Dandy Go!

Oysterman

What I remember is very similar to Jon's description. The date of the gig was Dec. 2nd, 1977.

Masses of people descended upon the Long Beach Arena. We were searched at the entrance in a rather cursory fashion, so they didn't find our weed.

We sat up just above the bleachers on the right-hand side of the stage. The view of the band was pretty good, but nothing like being right in the Buck Zone.

I don't know if they used this trick at this particular show, but I would witness it twice before the 70s ended: A dim light was shone upon Allen, who noodled with his keyboard at low volume. The idea was to get the audience to pay really close attention to Lanier both visually and aurally.

Of course, since the light was very dim and the sound low, every one of the 14,000 or so people in the arena strained quite hard to see and hear him.

All of a sudden--KABOOM! A startling explosion went off, melting both ears and eyes. As soon as the explosion was gone, the band was on the stage, the stage lights were all up, and the PA was at full volume.

They were blasting a song (either D&S or RU Ready 2 Rock, I think) with unbelievable ferocity.

They were really loud that night and lived up to a description that I would see years later of them: "Fast, heavy and loud."

I do remember the laser show, and it was great. Eric had his wrist laser. He bounced it off of the mirror ball, which was a great effect.

I am a little cloudy on the event as we smoked a fair quantity of weed during the course of the show.

I also remember Black Oak Arkansas opening the show. They were not too bad. I liked seeing U.F.O. as the supporting act the next year better, but I guess that is a matter of personal taste.

Overall, I give the show 5 stars (out of five) or two thumbs up, whichever you prefer.

Jeff Johansen

My first BOC show, and I was not expecting what was coming. They put on a great rock show.

The lasers, and searing guitar solos were mesmerizing. I sat in the middle of the floor staring straight up at the lasers dancing on the ceiling.

Easily one of my top ten favorite concerts EVER, and I have been to many.

Scott

My first gig was in December 1977 at the University of California-Santa Barbara. Spectres had been released, and they were playing the laser show. Not all of the lasers were functional, however. I know this only after hearing about some of the spectacular laser performances discussed by others, and specifically remembering NOT seeing certain diplays from such discussions.

I don't recall a setlist, I was a new fan. I do remember RU Ready, Zilla, Golden Age, Reaper, Hot Rails, Cities on Flame, ETI, and Tattoo Vampire. I would assume Born To Be Wild, they performed the cross-guitars, and the Five Guitars.

The venue was called "Robertson Gym". It's on campus. It was a college sports arena. Many other big name bands played there. I do remember it was a weeknight because I had class the next morning. Also it might have been Eric's birthday because I remember someone on stage joking about a birthday. At that time I did'nt know who was who name wise. But I remember a quip about a birthday.

If you cross check the open dates it would have been around gigs in Los Angeles and Bakersfield. They are in close proximity in the southern California area.

I think the opening band was named Hilltop. They had a guy who played trumpet.

Hope this helps!

George Geranios

Well, nothing to do with BOC, but until I began working at U.T. Austin I had never seen such a concentration of beautiful young women in one spot. The "dodgy boilers" backstage after the show were all 9 or 10's! Something in the water, I suppose.

Ralph

Checkout the following forum link (4th post down) in which the guy reckons this show was 1976...

However, Ken Welch's Gig itineries helpfully list this show as 4 December 1977, so hopefully that's sorted that out...

Anyway... here's the text of a review I found online that confirms the support band:

I recently had the pleasure of attending a B.O.C. ("Blue Oyster Cult") concert at Robertson Gym on the U.C.S.B. campus in Santa Barbara.

The band that played in front of B.O.C. was a band called "Tommy and Timmy", who put on a fairly good show, but did not compare to the show B.O.C. gave.

When Blue Oyster Cut came out on stage it was dark, three guitarists, Eric Bloom, Allen Lanier, Donald Roeser, and bassist Joe Bouchard all lined up on the front of the stage, while Albert Bouchard sat down behind an all chrome drum set.

The right when they started out with one of their new releases "R.U. Ready 2 Rock", two big explosions were lit off on both sides of the stage, setting the crowd into an uproar.

They also sung another of their recent smash hits "Godzilla", using plenty of synthesizer work on it. They also put on a tremendous lazer beam light show in the middle of this tune. They put on another fireworks and lazer beam show when they sung an old Steppenwolf song, "Born to be Wild".

Each member of the band got a chance to solo on their instrument. With Donald Roeser on lead guitar jamming by himself in several of the tunes. Eric Bloom and Allen Lanier both did separate solos in the tune "Dont Fear the Reaper", which was their second encore. Allen Lanier also gave a tremendous keyboard solo in "Born to be Wild" which was their first encore.

Joe Bouchard jammed alone under the spotlight for about 10 minutes on the bass. While his brother, Albert Bouchard followed immediately after with about a 20 minute drum solo under two white strobe lights. While the electronic engineers put on another spectacular lazer beam light show.

Ralph

Billboard [24 Dec 1977] gives the total ticket sales as 5868, with a ticket price range of $7.50-$8.50 and gives the gross receipts as $45,027.

Ralph

Check out the above so-called stub which appeared on eBay as part of a large lot of tickets in April 2010. There was no venue or information provided other than the date.

This info itself comes from what is apparently the back of a ticket stub for the show and is hand-written. Strangely, the name of Detective is dominant, suggesting they headlined but this is rather unlikely...

Detective did play some gigs with BOC later on in that month actually, but the desbarres.com site is no help as it lists gigs in St. Louis MI (support for Kiss) and Atlanta GA (support for Todd Rundgren) on the 7th and 9th December respectively - so nothing for the 8th. That's not definitive, of course, as the gigs they do list with BOC aren't correct anyway...

So that's all I have for this. Anyone out there got any info?

Quick Gig Facts
Eric

The opening band was Piper.

Michael Frederick

Love your site! I wanted to add a comment on the 10 Dec 77 concert of theirs at the Cow Palace. I don't remember Piper playing, but I do remember Black Oak playing. We were all disappointed that the Runaways didn't play, but after BOC got done I don't think any of us cared.

I do remember some guy passing out on the floor and then vomiting. Despite all the people there they managed to clear a ring around him until security hauled him out.

The music was great, the lasers were awesome, and the whole experience was one to remember - even all these years later! I still remember the strobe light under Albert's set; truly amazing to watch that.

Ralph

Ken Welch's Hall Report for this gig has Eddie Money scheduled as the opener, and then Detective...

Anyone know for sure?

Stop Press: Just seen a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site - it says Detective were the support (doesn't mention Eddie Money, though):

Mike Romzy

I was at this show, I remember no equipment, lasers etc... The band said they would be back and play again with the lasers.

I think I got in for free next show a week later. I will let you know if I can locate anything else about the show.

Quick Gig Facts
James Woody

For BOC's December 16th, 1977 show - I don't recall much. It was my first time seeing BOC and me and my buds and girlfriends were way into Agents Of Fortune and Spectres. This was the Spectres tour (obviously).

I just remember that they played most of their set with half of their laser equipment. They expained, from onstage, that the semi was stuck somewhere and this was only half of their laser show. If THAT was ONLY HALF - Holy Shit! I can't imagine what their "full-on" laser show would have been like!!!

I remember midway, someone had been dispatched to pick up a laser from some distributor in the Cincinnati area. They hooked up on stage left and it didn't do very much - it was not even close to as much as their one working laser could do. I was blind when I came out of there, not to mention DEAF!!!

It was one of those teenage experiences I will never forget. The lasers were just fantastic. They swept the audience, put us in a spinning box that was totally disorienting and kept on sweeping and changing and getting bigger and bigger and bigger and faster sweeps as they jammed along.

The music, of course, was awesome. We all knew just enough to get us around their set with a good deal of familiarity. It was a blast. I don't know how the band felt about their performance, but we in the audience loved it. It was exciting as hell, dynamic, loud and other-wordly (tongue-placed--in-cheek). I will never, ever forget that show!!! Nor will my friends.

BTW, it was freezing outside on the riverfront. Two years later I was almost killed at the same locale when hundreds of Who fans stampeded. That was the first time I ever saw a dead body up close - blue skin. I HAD to step over them to get into the damn Coliseum... but that's another story.

As for who else was on the bill - I really want to say it was "that other Casblanca band" called "Angel", but I could be confusing that show with another. Angel were an LA outfit who were the only other known rock band on the Casablanca record label besides KISS. It might be worth it for me to look up some info about them and to see whether or not they ever opened for BOC.

I also recall Todd Rundgren's Utopia opening for another major band - and perhaps this is the concert I'm confusing it with. So - it could have very well been either "Angel" or "Utopia." Sorry I can't be of more help. I mostly recall the exceptional performance from Blue Oyster Cult.

I absolutely love your website! Keep it going! Loads of great information...

Kenny Welch

I remember this show very well. The opening act was Edgar Winter and White Trash.

Out of the three trucks that carried equipment only the band gear did not show up in time. It seems that the driver (with the same name as a president) had hooked up with some babe and had other things on his mind.

Edgar had already played the entire set and was starting his encore when the truck showed up. Someone asked him to play an extended encore, he agreed with a really big smile and he then broke into a 45 minute version of Frankenstein.

It was amazing and not what he normally played with that band.

We the crew scrambled and took advantage of every available person around, I think even some of the band helped out too. We set the band gear up during the 45 minutes of Frankenstein and pulled the show off. I thought we did quite well knowing how long under good conditions it took to set up all the equipment.

Once the band started playing we were still setting up equipment. We set up what we had to have in the order of how it was needed in the show. It was truly a work in progress during the show.

All of the equipment was in the truck including all the lasers. It was a question of logistics as to what may have been excluded. It was always the goal of the band to never, ever leave anything out of the show - no matter what.

The truck was immediately replaced.

Ralph

OK - there's a bit of discrepancy about this show - there's a mention of this gig on Michael Des Barres' site saying Detective were the support:

Now Kenny's info above is pretty specific - the band immediately in front of BOC was Edgar Winter, but could Detective have opened?

Anyone got any info on this, let me know...

James Woody

I'm taking Kenny's word for it that it was Edgar Winter and White Trash who opened this show. I do remember seeing Edgar Winter live but did not put these shows together with BOC.

As far as BOC's use of the lasers that evening, they were set up on stage left behind a transparent screen accommodating a giant cut out hole for the laser equipment to sit in and the shine through. I noticed an identical hole in the screen on stage right that did not get used, hence, I believe only half the lasers got used that evening.

I distinctly remember the news from onstage that they were only playing with half of the laser equipment that night, because they were very apologetic about it - not that it even mattered! I'm happy that I got to see the band during those days before the FDA got a hold of their equipment.

It's funny that Sandy Pearlman was managing them back then, and Sandy went on to manage my friends Romeo Void here in San Francisco, though I never did get a chance to ask him about that incident.

I know he disliked using the stuff because the band lost way too much money on maintenance. It's sounds like such a "Pearlman" idea to gimmick out the show with this "then" clunky and temperamental "new technology."

Now everyone uses lasers, but not nearly in the same way BOC used them. Back then, that shit was dangerous; definitely NOT safe, and it still lends a lot to "the mystique" of the band from that time. BOC WERE dangerous, and unpredictable!

BOC have tons of fans here in (Northern) California, by the way. TONS!! They should be playing in the San Francisco clubs, not playing up in the Napa Valley wineries....

Ralph

There's a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site saying Detective were the support:

Ralph

Again, there's a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site saying Detective were the support:

Lonnie Turner

Your lineup info is correct. Detective did an in-store appearance at Karma Records before the show and members signed my friend's album.

As far as the BOC performance it was in line with the other descriptions you have from around this time. The visuals were stunning with the lasers.

Thanks for the site, it's a lot of fun walking down memory lane.

Ralph

The only evidence I have for this gig occurring is that it's listed on Ken Welch's gig itinery for November.

Do you know if it took place or not?

Stop Press: Just seen a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site - it says Detective were the support:

Dan Helmbrecht

On Christmas night in 1977 - the night before they were due to play the St. Paul Civic Center - they were going to have a free outdoor laser light show at Como Park.

The only problem was that the lasers were water cooled and the temp was about -15 below zero. We were on our way to the light show when we heard on the radio that two of the lasers had froze and broke. The show that evening was cancelled.

The next night they only had one laser at the concert. From my review clipping I have about the show there was one interesting fact. They sold 8,000 tickets the day of the show, a Civic Center record.

The review also states that Rockets opened the evening with a half-hour set and were followed by Black Oak.

Scott Harrison

I was at the Dec 26, 1977 show and they definitely played Last Days of May, and I am pretty sure they played Godzilla.

It was the first time I saw them, and I have since seen them over 30 times.

The lazer show info is correct, they only had one working.

Greg Mathieson

November 1977 - I was 17 and I just saw my first concert: Jethro Tull. Tull was my absolute favorite band so they set the bar for all concerts to come.

We had tickets for Blue Oyster Cult, coming up in another month. I wasn't very familiar with them yet, except of course Don't Fear the Reaper which was pretty ubiquitous at the time, and the live versions of Cities on Flame and ME262, which I had heard a few times on Beaker Street. My friend picked up Spectres, which had just been released, and they were playing Godzilla on the FM station. I had sent a self addressed stamped envelope to the BOC fan club and they sent me several pages of lyrics, primitively typed and photocopied. I was amused by such whimsical titles as "She's as Beautiful as a Foot" and "Harvester of Eyes". I distinctly remember reading the lyrics to "Cagey Cretin" and thinking "Whaaat the helllll..." But there were also titles and lyrics of deeper concerns, such as Astronomy and Flaming Telepaths. I saw some pictures of them and they looked seriously cool. I was looking forward to this greatly!

A couple days before the concert KQRS 92.5 FM sponsored what was supposed to be a spectacular laser light show off the roof of the IDS tower in Minneapolis, using BOC's 3 lasers synched to music broadcast from the station. You were supposed to park in designated parking lots, with a view of the skyscraper. It was about 20 below that night. I remember parking in this park, along with hundreds of other cars, waiting for this amazing show. The DJ announced it, the music played, and one weak dim spotlight appeared at the top of the building, pointing at the ground. Half an hour went by and nothing else happened. I don't remember if anyone ever came on the radio to tell everyone to go home or not, but it wasn't until the next day that we heard that the lasers were water-cooled, and it was so cold that 2 of the lasers froze and broke. Great, thanks, that means BOC had to do the show with only one laser. The newspaper ran a comic showing the IDS Tower with a light beam spelling out "Suckers".

I think The Rockets opened. I was pretty disinterested, but I do remember them so they must have been ok. They had a minor hit at the time with Fleetwood Mac's "Oh Well". I just remember straightforward hard rock and ripped jeans.

Next up was Black Oak Arkansas. They were very entertaining!

Finally BOC takes the stage. I think they started with R U Ready 2 Rock, but I was so unfamiliar that I'm not sure. I mostly had to piece it together from memory afterward as I started collecting their music. I'm sure that the setlist published on this website is incomplete because I know they played ME262, Cities on Flame and Last Days of May and they aren't listed. I'm sure there were others too. I remember Eric Bloom shot something from his wrist (a laser?) up into the light rig and exploded a firework. Now it's a cat toy, but then it was a LASER! It was kinda cool, but if that's all they got to do with their one remaining laser it was pretty sad. Happily it was not.

The concert was filmed, with a pretty elaborate film crew and cranes and the works. They said it was going to be released as a movie but it never was. The DVD that comes with Some Enchanted Evening was from that tour but it wasn't this show. It sure doesn't do it justice.

Then came the highlight. In fact it was a highlight of my youth. I don't know if it was Astronomy or Last Days of May, but When Buck played his solo the whole arena was dark except a spotlight on him. As his solo intensified and the band started in a laser shot up from the back of the stage and slowly tilted toward the center of the arena and fanned out to cover a huge spinning mirror ball. The laser fractured into thousands of fragments that shot in every direction, occasionally catching you in the eye for just a split second. The visual and aural experience was incredible. You have to remember, this was 1977. The world was darker and blurrier back then.

So then I ran out and got On Your Feet or On Your Knees and everything else up to Mirrors when I sort of stopped, because the '80's.

How did it stack up to Jethro Tull? I couldn't choose a favorite. I dare say if I was more familiar with their music at the time of the concert I might have ranked BOC higher than Tull.

I saw BOC last week. It's not the '70's anymore, but they still rocked. Buck is still one of my favorite guitarists, not just because of his skill and talent but also his personality. My only disappointment was in the setlist. They focused almost entirely on Buck's songs. Eric sounded great on ME262 and The Red and the Black but he didn't really take the lead on much else. Maybe that's all he can muster. That's ok, I appreciate him sticking with it!

An eel is waiting under the train...

Ralph

Andy Tanas definitely has this show on the 27th as a Black Oak/BOC gig, and this is confirmed by Ken Welch's Hall Report for the show.

Here's a link that also definitely gives this gig's date as Dec 27 1977:

Tim Shockley

I saw Blue Oyster Cult at the International Amphitheatre, Chicago, IL with the Black Oak Arkansas and Detective on 12/27/77.

Lowell Todd

I was at this gig in Chicago. I was going to college in Los Angeles and also saw the show at the Long Beach Arena a month or so earlier. I remember the Chicago gig very well... Black Oak played a great set. We had great seats just to the right of the stage.

BOC came on and an entire side of the PA system blew out. It never came back! So the Cult played with half their sound system all night - every now and then, the "bad side" of the PA would bark and crackle and threaten to work... ... and then fall silent. IT WAS HILARIOUS!

I saw BOC many times in the '70s and there always seemed to be something wrong with their equipment - amps blowing up, missed taped que's, and such... . but their shows always a great time!

Long live BOC!

Ralph

This second show and the band line-up is confirmed by Ken Welch's Hall Report for the show.

Tom Sus

This show was only my 2nd concert, and I do remember that it was a birthday present (12th row!).

Rocket was a fairly 2nd rate band, too loud, but did a decent cover of Fleetwood Mac's "Oh, Well". Edgar Winter had a horn section, did a few good blues songs and a great "Frankenstein" to close.

Blue Oyster Cult came out and the sound was instantly more powerful and focused.

The highlight for me was the Golden Age Of Leather, where Buck played a beautiful solo over the ending (choral part), then a long jammed out Last Days Of May with the lasers decorating the back wall of the Ampitheater.

Hot Rails To Hell featured a Joe Bouchard bass solo. I remember (Buck?) someone pretty much ripping the strings off of their guitar at the end of the 5 guitar jam, or maybe Born To Be Wild.

I don't know why they did Going Through The Motions, maybe they thought it would be their next hit?

Art Liming

I don't recall Rocket, but I will confirm Edgar Winter was there in support. Edgar winter did a monster (sorry) rendition of Frankenstein as his encore. He played one of those keyboards with a strap over his shoulder like a guitar. It had a mirrored back which he used to reflect the spot back out around the arena and hit a mirror ball above the main floor. We didn't know it was a hint of the light show to come.

Actually - I know you're having a problem deciding about if this gig was the 26th or 27th - well I've done some investigating and I can tell you that apparently there were two shows: Tuesday 27th and Wednesday 28th. But, I'm not sure which was which.

Edgar Winter was DEFINITELY the act on before BOC the night I was there - although I don't recall a band before them, but there's a better than even chance I missed them. We would often spend the time before the main acts out in the concourse getting high, checking out girls, waiting for others to arrive, etc.

Ralph

Billboard had "Pockets" down as the opening act but this was clearly a typo and obviously should have read "Rockets". There's also a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site confirming that Detective were the support:

Ralph

There's a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site confirming that Detective were the support:

Mark Miller

Just a small bit of info... According to the Legacy Edition of "Some Enchanted Evening", the first bonus track, #8, is "ME 262", was recorded here in Rochester on 12.31.77.

Too bad I was only 6 at the time.

Ralph

There's a mention of this show on Michael Des Barres' site confirming that Detective were the support:

I think also that these date(s) were played in 1977 - if you have any info, please let me know:

Ralph

I saw this on the Hong Kong version of eBay [http://www.ebay.com.hk] in 2005:

Anyone got any info on this?