This section looks at the first show of the UK club/warm-up tour in 1980. The opening date took place in Aberdeen, Scotland.
"These bombs even turn your bogies red."
Def Leppard started a two month long UK club tour in Aberdeen, Scotland on this day in 1980.
The show took place at the University Of Aberdeen on 18th January 1980.
The first show of 1980 and the band's first ever visit to the city.
It was also the opening night of a six week warm-up club tour around the UK after completing work on their debut album.
The 'On Through The Night' sessions had ended in early January and the band went straight into rehearsals for the tour.
The concert took place in the University's Students' Union building which was a popular concert venue in the city from the late 1960's up to the mid '90s.
During this tour all 11 new songs recorded for the album were included in the setlist.
13 songs in all were regularly played and also featured the B-Side 'Good Morning Freedom' and E.P. track 'Ride Into The Sun'.
Rick Allen would play a short and very impressive drum solo during the mid section of 'Good Morning Freedom'.
Fellow UK band Witchfynde were the main support act at all shows. They were supporting their debut album 'Give 'Em Hell' which had, like The Def Leppard E.P., been recorded at Fairview Studios in Hull, England.
The main 'On Through The Night' world tour would not begin properly until April after the album had been released.
The tour would ultimately be in support of the soon-to-be-released 'Hello America' single which would come out in February.
This tour was used as a rehearsal for the main tour and to work in new material from the album that had not been played live. These new songs included 'It Don't Matter' and others that had not been part of the 1978 and 1979 live shows.
Record Mirror - March 1980 Interview/Article Quotes
They're looking forward to the release of their debut album 'On Through The Night' which came out on March 14.
To preface this release they've been playing a headlining club tour and they've been getting an ecstatic response.
I caught up with them in Aylesbury. On the afternoon of the gig, the band were relaxed. Excited about the gig but confident in their own ability to triumph.
Guitarist Steve Clark was reading a schlock-horror novel "The Shining" and resisting taunts from the rest of the band about the colour of his hair.
I used to be blonde but the smoke bombs on their current tour apparently contain a dust which dyes everything a sickly shade of red. His stage shirt had gone a puce shade, his hair had gone strawberry. He was not happy.
"These bombs even turn your bogies red," he announced to a chorus of groans
Bass played Rick Savage was happy. He had heard Sheffield Wednesday were beating Chesterfield 2:1. Then the final result came through - a three all draw. He was inconsolable.
Rick Allen was upstairs pounding the bejeezsus out of his drums during the sound check. A comparison between his kit - pounding and a re-run of the last days of Pompeii would not be out of order.
Singer Joe Elliott was his usual in-command self. Joe is the front man and the guy who does the interviews. He is calm, self-assured, confident in himself and confident in the band. He is in no way conceited.
He just simply knows that Leppard are a good band and he's proud to be a member of the team. He's also one of the oldest in the outfit - at a mere 20, and he also happens to be one fine singer.
UK Club Tour 1980 Fan Photos
Live photos from this tour leg.
UK Tour News Story January 1980
Leppard On the Prowl
Def Leppard, who've completed work on their debut album for Phonogram which will be released in the Spring, have lined up a lengthy British tour starting next weekend
The band, who are riding the crest of the New Wave of heavy metal, play:
Aberdeen University January 18, Dundee University 19, Glasgow Tiffany's 20, Edinburgh Tiffany's 21, Ayr Pavilion 22, Liverpool University 23, Oldham Tower Club 25, Newcastle University 26, London Marquee 27-28, Bradford University 30. Middlesborough Rock Gardens February 1, Stockport Ritz 4, Leicester University 5, Exeter University 6, West Runton Pavilion 8, Retford Porterhouse 9, Bristol Granary 11, Cardiff Top Rank 20, Grimsby Central Hall 21, Withernsea Grand Pavilion 22, Nottingham Boat Club 23, Leeds Fforde Grene Hotel 24, London Music Machine 27, Newcastle Mayfair 29.
UK Tour News Story January 1980
Leppard On the Prowl
Def Leppard are one of the first of the 'new wave' of heavy metal bands to announce a New Year tour
The young Midlands based band go out on the road later this month for an extensive club and college tour.
Full tour dates read:
Aberdeen University January 18, Dundee University 19, Glasgow Tiffany's 20, Edinburgh Tiffany's 21, Ayr Pavilion 22, Liverpool University 23, Oldham Tower Club 25, Newcastle University 26, London Marquee 27 and 28, Bradford University 30. Middlesborough Rock Garden February 1, Stockport Ritz 4, Leicester University 5, Exeter University 6, West Runton Pavilion 8, Retford Porterhouse 9, Bristol Granary 11, Cardiff Top Rank 12, Exeter Routes 13, Loughborough Town Hall 18, Sheffield Top Rank 20, Grimsby Central Hall 21, Withernsea Grand Pavilion 22, Nottingham Boat Club 23, Leeds Fforde Grene Hotel 24, London Music Machine 27, Newcastle Mayfair 29.
Note - Both news stories had an initial list of dates which changed as the tour progressed. There were also many extra dates added. Exeter University was actually at Essex University in Colchester.
Animal Instinct 1987 Biography Quotes
1980 UK Club Tour
The dawning of 1980 found Def Leppard back on the road, heading out on a gruelling two-month tour of clubs and universities. By Joe's count, forty-five shows in forty-seven days.
On the opening night in Aberdeen, Scotland, the heat from the band's new stage lighting was so intense that Joe ran off stage after the set and threw up.
A reviewer who saw the show was about as enthusiastic. 'Having just seen The Clash, I didn't particularly want to come to this gig,' he wrote. He went on to dub Pete Willis "Pete Wells" and got all the song titles wrong (Answer To The Master became And So To the Master).
The Leppards received a terrible shock midway through the tour. On February 19th, Bon Scott, their hard-drinking, good natured pal from AC/DC, was found dead in London on the back seat of a friend's car after an all-night session with the bottle. The next evening, the band dedicated a song to his memory during their homecoming gig at the Top Rank in Sheffield.
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