Monday, 19th July 2021
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41 Years Ago DEF LEPPARD's First Stadium Show In CLEVELAND, OH

Def Leppard 1980. Def Leppard 1980

Def Leppard played an On Through The Night tour show in Cleveland, OH on 18th July 1980 with an archive concert review and photos available.

Plain Dealer reviewed the show which took place at Cleveland Lakefront Stadium when the band supported Bob Seger.

The band's first ever visit to the city during their first North American tour.

The show took place at the 80,000 capacity Cleveland Lakefront Stadium.

The concert was part of the World Series Of Rock events that were held in the stadium from 1974 to 1980.

This was the last time the event took place following years of crowd issues with violence and drugs.

The 1979 show saw Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry leave the band following issues on stage and back stage fighting.

The event became notorious for crowd trouble, drugs and gun violence and many injuries with fans falling from the seating levels to the floor of the venue.

Three shows were held in June and August 1974, four in May/June/July/August 1975, three in June/August 1977, three in July/August 1978 and one in July 1979 before this final event in 1980.

This show happened exactly two months into Def Leppard's first North American tour and was headlined by Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band.

Def Leppard opened the show early at 3:50pm and were followed by EddieMoney, who would go on to support them at the San Diego stadium show in September 1983.

The J. Geils Band followed Eddie Money.

Having played many large theatres and arenas with pat Travers, Ted Nugent and Scorpions this was the band's first time in a major outdoor stadium.

It came just over a week after they had played a outdoor field with Ted Nugent to 33,078 fans in Hebron, Ohio on 12th July 1980.

The stadium was demolished in 1996 and replaced by what is now FirstEnergy Stadium which had been due to be played earlier this month.

It will now be played (probably) on 3rd July 2021 on The Stadium Tour following the rescheduling of all dates.

Read an excerpt from the local review below.

Visit the Tour News section. For more news on future tour plans.

Visit the Album News section for more news on new music (based on band member quotes).

Cleveland, OH 1980 - Rare Photo Links

The first linked photo appears to be Def Leppard on stage at 4:26pm on 19th July 1980.

If you squint you can make out Steve and Pete and the amps. This is the only known photo of the band on stage at this event.

The photo is among others dated from this show. One of them is posted below from Twitter with a fan holding a show banner.

Def Leppard 1980. Show Advert

Plain Dealer - Online Review Quotes

"The show opened 10 minutes early, at 3:50p.m. with Def Leppard."

"A quintet from Sheffield, England."

"This was the group's first tour to Ohio."

"Many songs sounded a lot alike."

"And there was a slightly brassy feel to the band."

"But it did well for a new band playing to a new audience."

"The band needs more variety, but has good audience rapport."

Cleveland, OH 1980 Fan Photos

Photos from Cleveland 1980/Plus aerial view of the stadium in August 1974.

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