Clash Take the 5th Tour
Supported by The Undertones Sam & Dave

updated 10 July 2008 - punters view + Penny Smith QA
updated 28 Dec 2008 - added more venu info and photos
updated 7 Jan 2010 - added punters comments with photo
updated 12 Feb 2012 - added 4 track video
updated 4 Aug 2014 - punters comments 'Beatles are back'
updated Dec 2014 - better audio/video info
Updated July 2021 added reel to reel master

the most widely circulated Clash bootleg

The source of probably the most widely circulated Clash bootleg from the FM radio broadcast. Critical acclaim following the gig was also significant in pushing further the band’s profile in the US.

WNEW FM recorded the complete concert and this high quality stereo broadcast is the source of all the recordings in circulation.

Audio 1

Sound 2.5 - 1hr 9mins - unknown - 21 tracks
poor old copy

Audio 2

Sound 3 - 1hr 9mins - unknown - 21 tracks
poor old copy

Audio 3 - WWFM Broadcast

Sound 4.0 - 1hr 24mins - FM - 23+
well worth a listen, with studio commentary

I Fought the Law

Audio 4 - Klashing the Klash LP

Sound 4.5 - 63mins - from LP/m - 18 tracks
the next best sound though vinyl has a skip or two on mine

Audio 5 - Live USA CD

Sound 4.5 - 65mins - from CD/m - 21 tracks
Good sound but might as well get the marginallly better Guns of Brixton

Audio 6 - Money Made Us Flexible CD

Sound 4.0 - 72min - unknown gen? - 22 tracks
poorest but good.

Audio 7 - Guns of Brixton CD

Sound 5.0 - 78min - from cd/m - 23 tracks
by far the best - though the others are good

I Fought the Law


average/poor audience - Sound 2.5 - unknown gen - 26min - 7 tracks

Baby Please Don’t Go




4 Track video - Silent video (from 8 mm film footage) by Ruby Max Fury with synched audio from bootleg recordings. See below.

Video Perfectly synched audio from bootleg recordings to 8mm film with snippets of;

I'm So Bored With the U.S.A
I Fought the Law
Jail Guitar Doors
English Civil War


1979 02.02.2012 | Dangerous Minds

Photo: Bob Gruen

Using a silent video (from 8 mm film footage) uploaded to Vimeo by Ruby Max Fury, Clash fans synched audio from bootleg recordings to the film to re-create a sense of what it was like on the night of September 21, 1979 when the The Clash invaded New York City. The second night of a two night stand at The Palladium, this was the show where Paul Simonon made rock history when he smashed his guitar to the stage and Pennie Smith took the iconic photo that graced the cover of London Calling.

In February of ‘79, I was in the audience for The Clash’s NYC debut. Standing in the swaying balcony and watching the The Clash pummel and strafe the audience with rock so hard you could feel it in your guts, I knew instantaneously I was witnessing a band for the ages. If there had been any doubt that punk bands could play their instruments, The Clash crushed that myth beneath a barrage of tight visceral beats and lacerating guitars. It was epic. And it was very very good.

The Clash at the New York City Palladium performing the songs I'm So Bored With the U.S.A., I Fought the Law, Jail Guitar Doors, and English Civil War. It is only short clips of the songs but great nonetheless. This concert was the same night Paul Simonon smashed his favorite bass guitar thus creating one of the greatest moments in rock and roll history ever captured, seen on the album cover of London Calling, and taken by photographer Pennie Smith.

Writer Tom Carson described The Clash live sound beautifully:

"The musicians’ confidence was evident at every turn. Lead guitarist Mick Jones and bassist Paul Simonon leaped around as if no stage could hold them; Nicky Headon’s drums cracked through the music with the authority of machine-gun fire. The group’s perfect ensemble timing - the two guitars locking horns above the percussion; the way Jones’ ethereal, incantatory backup vocals filled the gaps in Joe Strummer’s harsh leads - went beyond mere technical mastery; it was audible symbols of the band’s communal instinct. "

A sublime slice of rock history.

DrugStabbingTime : The Clash - 1979-09-21, at the New York City Palladium performing the songs I'm So Bored With the U.S.A., I Fought the Law, Jail Guitar Doors, and English Civil War.

It is only short clips of the songs but sweet nonetheless. This concert was the night Paul Simonon smashed his favorite bass guitar thus creating one of the greatest moments in rock and roll history ever captured, graced on the album cover of London Calling, and taken by photographer Pennie Smith.

More info about this special gig, including the full setlist, can be found here:

The original source of this video was a silent Super 8 film camera. I layered the audio over it and hastily synced it together. Better transitioning and syncing coming soon.


Some doubt has been cast over who is playing and when this took place. Dated as the Soundcheck of the 21st September, the tracks seem right as does the acoustics for the venue. Joe can clearly be heard singing, that there is no doubt, as to whether the lead guitar sounds like Mick’s normal style is open to question but certainly the Clash songs played here have guitar fills and arrangements the same as were being played on this tour. Mickey Gallagher can be heard on keyboards. Any more information would be appreciated?

The recording, edited between songs, is not from the soundboard and is some generations back from the master. Sound does have some distortion but otherwise there is a good range of sound and clarity. All instrumentation comes through well although the bass is somewhat buried in the mix.


Visit the Clash on Stage website for a comprehensive catalogue of unofficially released CD's and Vinyl.

Klashing With The Klash was the original double vinyl set in a simple brown sleeve and was very widely available throughout the 80’s. It was later reissued in a white sleeve and also as a picture disc. Klashing is incomplete with 18 out of the 23 songs played and its running order is incorrect, side 1 starting with Guns of Brixton.

Track gaps have been added unnecessarily between songs losing some of the ‘live experience’ and the drama of the performance, e.g. Career Opportunities blasting out of the hanging last notes of Armagideon Time. Strangely Career Opportunities is edited losing a chorus and part of a verse. It also loses many of Joe’s between song introductions. Sound quality though is excellent, warm, crisp and with little distortion.

In 1990 Great Dane of Italy issued The Guns of Brixton CD. This has all 23 songs in the right order and has the best sound quality, just edging past Klashing having greater stereo separation (two guitars split between the two channels) and a touch better clarity and detail.

Money Made Us Flexible and Live USA CD’s are both incomplete with lesser sound.

The most interesting recording is the complete unedited WNEW FM broadcast with radio comments before the set, before the encore and after the set. It runs some 6 minutes longer than any other, also has an excellent sound, though not as good as Klashing/Guns of Brixton. It is one or two generations away from the master but both it and Guns of Brixton come from this source as they shares the same wide stereo separation unlike Klashing.

Although the FM recording resulted in a high quality of sound, its not one to suit all tastes, vocals are high in the mix and the Palladium seems to emit a kind of pseudo echo effect like that of a very large hall. More significantly Mick’s use of effects boxes are even more apparent in this concert than elsewhere on the Take The Fifth Tour and this does blur the tone of his guitar losing some of its impact and edge. Mick was no doubt keen to impress the New York musicians and critics with his musical sophistication.

Bootleg details can be found here

Visit these websites for a comprehensive catalogue of unofficially released CD's and Vinyl (forever changing) or If Music Could Talk for all audio recordings

Discogs - PDF - webpage
Punky Gibbon -
PDF - webpage
Jeff Dove -
PDF - webpage
Ace Bootlegs -
PDF - webpage

For all recordings go to If Music Could Talk / Sound of Sinners

ultimate rock photo

Arguably the most famous concert in the history of The Clash; the night of the ‘ultimate rock photo’ and cover of London Calling and the source of probably the most widely circulated Clash bootleg from the FM radio broadcast. Critical acclaim following the gig was also significant in pushing further the band’s profile in the US.

WNEW FM recorded the complete concert and this high quality stereo broadcast is the source of all the recordings in circulation.

London Calling Album cover

After much study we believe this comes from the 21st. See here why we think this corrcet..

ultimate rock photograph was inducted into the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame

London Calling front cover by Pennie Smith was inducted into the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame as the definitive rock’n’roll photograph:

The ultimate rock photograph nearly never was. Having softened up America with their Pearl Harbour '79 tour earlier in the year, The Clash returned to the States and sold out every date on their Clash Take The Fifth jaunt. Pennie Smith was with them throughout the entire tour, but she almost didn't go to the Palladium.

"I'd shot so much Clash live stuff by then," she remembers, "so I was going to go out with friends, but I’m not very good at not working, so in the end, I went along." Almost invariably, Smith positioned herself on guitarist Mick Jones's side of the stage but fate, for that one night, located her beside bassist Paul Simonon. "I wasn't shooting much until I twigged that Paul looked grumpy so I kept my camera up to my eye, and he was looking crosser and crosser, and then he exploded."

Smith is adamant that although Simonon had a reputation for aggression, he was "generally a calm sort of bloke, not violent," and that the eruption wasn't staged for the benefit of the camera. "It was one of his favourite guitars, not some cheap one chosen to smash up, so he must have been really angry about something. I was very close to him, using a wide-angle lens. He was almost three feet away and heading in my direction, so I was backing off. It all went slightly in slow motion, and I was thinking things like, 'Have I pissed him off by being on this side of the stage?' But I didn't feel in any danger."

Tactfully, Smith avoided the dressing room in the immediate aftermath of the outburst, but says, "Years later I asked him what was wrong, and he said he hadn't been happy with the sound."

As soon as The Clash saw the shoot, they wanted it for the cover of their next album, London Calling. Once again, Smith tried to avoid her date with destiny. "I remember sitting in a hotel room trying to convince Joe that it wasn't a good idea because once it was blown up it would be very out of focus." Fortunately, Strummer was having none of it.

The photograph stands as the embodiment of rock's power to possess an individual, to drive him to passionate extremes, but Smith has another, equally cherished, souvenir of that night. "My watch strap broke later on the tour, and Paul gave me his watch, the one he'd worn that night, so I could use his strap. The watch was smashed to blazes and the hands had stopped -- at ten to ten."

Paul Simonon:

"There have been various theories about that night. One was that I didn't like the sound and another was that I was having problems with my girlfriend, but I never took stuff like that onstage with me.

"That's not what was going on at The Palladium. We were used to getting a very exciting response from our audiences, jumping around and dancing. The Palladium had fixed seating, so the audience was frozen in place, and we weren't getting any response from them, no matter what we did. I'm generally good-natured, but I do bottle things up and then I'm like a light switch, off and on, and it can be quite scary, even for me, when I switch, because it's very sudden. Onstage that night I just got so frustrated with that crowd and when it got to breaking point I started to chop the stage up with the guitar.

"We used to get cheap Fenders from CBS, they were newer models, quite light and insubstantial. But the one I smashed that night was a great bass, a Fender Precision, [it cost about] about £160, one of the older heavy, solid models, so I did regret breaking it. In fact, I gathered all the pieces up and kept them. I loaned it to the Rock Hall of Fame in Cleveland for awhile, but I've got it back now."

Penny Smith audio interview



'London Calling Album Cover', 1979, taken on Pentax ESII. Pennie Smith tells Nick Knight about her shot of The Clash’s Paul Simonon smashing his bass guitar at the New York Palladium.

Penny Smith Interview

(link) / (archived PDF)

9. You couldn’t have envisaged that The Clash: London Calling photograph, would become such an iconic and lauded image. Paul du Noyer, editor of the special edition of Q Magazine said: “This was a picture that lots of photographers mentioned without prompting… it’s a classic picture because it captures the ultimate rock ‘n’ roll moment - total loss of control”.

Are you pleased that this shot of Paul Simonon, was selected as Q’s ‘Greatest Rock ‘n’ Roll Photograph of All-Time’?

“This is going to be another broad answer, I don’t take pictures of bands, I take pictures of people. It bores me slightly, that people put me in brackets, saying you know of The Clash, this is a reference to the great British public, that bracket people for their own mental stability. I mean if you’re a great painter, they will never let you be a great poet as well, in fact, if you turn out to be a better poet, they’ll probably throwaway both your original paintings and your poetry.

You’re not allowed to step out of your bracket, because you’re safe being contained, and it’s easy for people thinking that this person does that, and that’s where I’ll put them. Particularly within the climate of the music business now, or any industry, where they want a quick reference, they’re unprepared to swot (pausing), I’ve gone well-wide on the mark, and this is one of my rants at the moment. But, I don’t think it was judged within my Clash photos, I think for whatever devious reasons, they were doing it to fill their papers or whatever.

I mean that picture to me, I can’t see it now, its been used in various forms so many times - it’s a bit like wallpaper. I think it was chosen in a parallel with other photos, for whatever personal reasons people put up as their choice, so it was against other music photos per se. Of The Clash photos, there are others that perhaps I’d prefer, for all sorts of reasons. Yes I like that picture, as I say, it’s so long ago now, I’ve seen it too many times to get the gut reaction, that I had at the time.

But basically, Clash-wise there are other more snap-shot type things, that still take me back to the gut feeling, that I had at the time - perhaps an odd backstage one, maybe one that’s never been seen before. Obviously I’m known for Clash photos, but I don’t bracket myself. The Clash, bless their cotton socks, I stuck with them (laughing) for 6 or 7 years more or less, whatever their career was, so obviously I had quite an intimate relationship with them, but like-wise The Stone Roses,

I did the bulk of their career etc. Primals etc. But I’ve never had any concerns, bands included, what anybody else thinks of my pictures - I take them for me. So as I say, with The Clash, the reason I stuck with them, is that they just left me completely alone.

All the bands I’ve worked with over periods of time, including bizarrely, The Pet Shops, because they just crease me up, I find them so funny. They’re bands that have either got to make good shapes, and / or I’m compatible with, and they leave me to get on with my job, and they don’t have any say over the pictures, that are chosen finally”.

Song Smiths page Album artwork

There's an article here on Song Smiths page regarding the Album artwork

One of the most iconic photos in punk history

23punk | Facebook

The Clash Official | Facebook




Palladium on New York’s 14th Street

This was the first of the two concerts at the seated and sold out Palladium on New York’s 14th Street.

The 3,800 seater Palladium on New York’s 14th Street was an old converted theatre, as ornate as London’s Lyceum but sleazier with drug pushers plying their trade outside. Thanks to Sukwoon Noh (it was his first Clash gig) for providing the following recollections of the Palladium;

You can see the ol Palladium inscription in the left photo above the montage on the facia.

"In the 70's and 80's the Palladium was THE place in NYC. That's where all the great new wave bands played. I saw the Jam, Joe Jackson, Ramones, David Johansen and few others. It was essentially a movie theater converted into a concert hall.

Main floor and the second level called the loge. It has since been demolished and in place stands a high-rise. The street level is now an electronic store called 'PC Richards' and the upper levels belong to NY University's dormitory. Only 1 block away from the Irving Plaza [where Joe played with Meskies in 99 & 2001]"


It’s a more interesting recording than it should be. The first 2 songs and Clash City Rockers are played the same as if in performance but with no singing. The absence of vocals though allows the musical detail in the songs to come through with all Mick’s guitar licks and fills clearly heard. The songs stand up as music alone and are an enjoyable listen. Joe can be heard way back in the mix on Capital Radio and as the “straight” version finishes the band get into a jam on the song based on the part of the song where often Joe would improvise new words e.g. “the drummers in the box office..”

The most interesting songs are the non Clash songs. The first is a loose cover of the r’n’b standard by Big Joe Williams; Baby Please Don’t Go. Its played in the style of Van Morrison’s Them version, Joe of course covered Van’s Gloria in the 101’ers. Joe’s sings this song with some enthusiasm but its more of a jam and is interesting as a rare Clash performance but has little merit of its own.

The last track though is very enjoyable; The Clash’s take on Roadrunner by Ellis McDaniel a.k.a Bo Diddley has some great guitar by Mick (presumably) and Joe gets into the vocals.

The gig

The complete WNEW broadcast begins with the radio announcer setting the scene and concludes with “ is rude, it is crude, but its great rock’n’roll”. Frank Sinatra sings High Hope’s before The Clash hit the stage, the announcer and everyone else wondering why! Guns of Brixton CD begins at this point as Sinatra’s voice fades out and Mick’s lead guitar blasts out loaded with effects but it’s a powerful tight performance with Joe intense and clearly up for the occasion. I’m So Bored with the USA and Complete Control follow without a break the latter superb with Mick’s solo cutting like a knife.

Joe “I think we’re all on the radio now, has everyone got good eyesight, there’s a line in this number which is entitled all that phoney Beatle mania has bitten the dust..” As Joe spits out ”bitten the dust” with venom the band launch into London Calling, maybe THE highlight of the night; tight, together, Joe fired up and Mick’s guitar sounding like supercharged switchblades as Ira Robbins put it. Joe clearly sings “the midnight shutdown and I ain’t had enough, referring presumeably to London’s pub licensing hours. Why with London Calling supposedly in the can is Joe still singing this line in place of the recorded “truncheon swing” line? The song ends with Joe singing the complete line,” never felt so much like singing the blues”.

White Man In Hammersmith Palais gets in a great danceable groove with Joe and Mick trading lines and Joe adds “punk rockers way back home they don’t know anything but they’re very, very busy fighting under the lighting” Joe intros Koka Kola by having fun with being on the radio; “now its time for a word from our sponsors and station identification, this is Radio W.S.H.I.T coming from New York City and the makers of Coca Cola would like to announce..” As Joe shouts “Hit the deck” Topper’s drum rolls thunder into I Fought The Law; a great rock’n’roll moment. The crowd roar their approval.

Jail Guitar Doors is another highlight (especially the final codas) and then its Paul on the excellent early arrangement of Guns Of Brixton (a song that would under go a number of changes in future tours).

Joe then gives an amusing introduction to English Civil War fortuitously aided by one Johnny Green i.e. When Johnny Comes Marching Home; “We’d like to do away with the Ted Nugent aspect of it a minute, don’t worry Ted will be on in a minute! (referring to the negative response in Detroit to Mick playing an acoustic ) he’s got this here (acoustic guitar) cos we’re trying to do this American number. This song was written by your forefathers and not a bad little number either, gaffer tape, here comes Johnny Green with the gaffer tape, gaffer tape quick, here comes Johnny Green with a gaffer tape, and he’s a little too late, you’re always too late Johnny!” Its played as a folk song giving it an interesting new dimension and changes the pace of the set before normal service is resumed with the power chords of Clash City Rockers blasting over the audience. Mickey Gallagher plays unannounced mid song before Joe introduces him before Stay Free “Its Mickey Gallagher of the Blockheads, Alright we can’t play Gates of The West as it’s a bit..(complicated?)”. Mick played an old hollow body electric on Stay Free which gives a different sound but one that loses much of the guitar edge of the song and especially the ending coda.

Mick introduces a brilliant Clampdown with “um all these guitar swops, not as many as Rick Neilsen yet!” The song gets into a great loose rhythmic jam with Mickey’s organ heard to good effect but the song needs the ending worked up for 16 Tons tour to give it a fitting climax.

Joe’s introduction to Police & Thieves is the only section of the set not fully included on Guns of Brixton. The complete broadcast has “hey, now’s the time, this here is your chance, you give it to me now, listen to this oooh, oooh” as Joe’s screams herald the crashing drum intro to the song. Police and Thieves is another highlight with great guitar work from Mick and Mickey’s organ does add to the enjoyment of the song. This broadcast is probably the best sounding source to judge the contribution of Mickey Gallagher to The Clash live sound during his time with the band. It’s a matter of personal opinion but his contribution is probably superfluous on most songs but does contribute to others.

The Klashing LP side of Police & Thieves and Capital Radio was the most played of the four on many a Clash fan’s turntable and for good reason. Joe’s introduction to Capital Radio is memorable too; “Shush! Pick it Mick, soft Mickey, I hope you all know about Junior Murvin, I tell ya you should hear Junior Murvin doing that tune, Junior Murvin can sing in a voice as high as that roof, he sings it like Police (Joes best falsetto) simmer down control your temper, ah ooh ah ooooh …” Capital Radio then explodes shredding the Palladium audience and still makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up today! Joe sings mid song “if you wanna hear a record you ain’t got a hope (dropping Aidan Day line, Capital Radio DJ unknown to US audiences and now producing unintelligible literary dissertations on Dylan lyrics!) and all the DJ’s are smoking dope….sorry mate we don’t play rock’n’roll records on this here station, and since I am the DJ on this here Capital Radio, I would like to tell you a few of our station rules. No.1 we allow no rock’n’roll, No.2 we allow no rock’n’roll, No.3 we allow no rock’n’roll, No, 4 yep no rock’n’roll what- hey man, fuck you man”, Topper’s drum rolls and the songs crashes into its seismic conclusion. Superb.

Tommy Gun next and the spotlight falls literally on Topper “Now who do you think this is going to suit, we’ll see him in a minute, when the lights hit him”. Fine performance, which doesn’t quite ignite. Wrong ‘Em Boyo is a definite highlight though; Joe bashing out the intro on his primitive sparse sounding Chuck Berry style rhythm guitar and then Mick comes in with his effects loaded lead guitar. One of the contrasts of style of course that made The Clash so special. It’s a great performance with a Mickey Gallagher organ solo, who said The Clash weren’t a dance band!

Its straight into the Janie Jones and Garageland rush to the encore, both fine performances but here certainly Mick’s guitar effects lose some of the impact of these punk classics. During Garageland someone grabs the mike wailing banshee like until Joe grabs it back.

On the complete broadcast recording the radio announcer now comes back on giving the correct station identification (unlike Joes’s!), “If you’ve never seen the Clash it’s an experience, I’ll tell you that. I was out the front for a bit and its so loud, I‘m used to loud music but it is loud to the point of real distortion, and the people are just totally enveloped in the music, I would say the entire orchestra section which is a good part of the whole house, are all on their feet, they’re dancing, they’re jumping up and down and they are just totally into it, its almost an hypnotic influence that the band has over the audience”

Bass and drums then beat out the long opening to Armagideon Time, followed by Mickey’s organ and then finally Joe’s vocals and Mick’s guitar. The long build up is more stagecraft than musical, with the house lights out and just a spotlight on Joe building the tension. Then as the last notes of the song hang in the air, Mick shouts 1-2-3-4, the dazzling spotlights shine on and Career Opportunities scorches the audience. It’s another highlight then its straight into What’s My Name (ditch that effects box Mick!) and Joe sings “New York, New York, Montgomery Clift, we dig Montgomery Clift”. The actor getting his only live Clash credit! Topper beats out a drum pattern and then a brilliantly chaotic White Riot blasts out and yes you can hear that bass go dead at the end.

On the complete recording the announcer comes back on “as the drum sticks go hurtling out to the crowd “ you can hear Mick go past him saying “bollocks, you cunt!” The announcer (now slightly embarrassed) “don’t think there will be another encore, judging from the reaction out there definitely is the desire out there for another song or two” He then turns to a colleague whose response sums up the concert “got Pam Roley here, first time to see The Clash any impressions? There’s a long gap until a clearly dazed voice almost lost for words says “aaaaaah I’m pretty blown away right now this was a very exciting show, …..I can’t say anything… was great and exciting”.

the Clash wouldn't come out until the audience properly applauded for Sam and Dave

From: Robert Damon <rdamon[at]>

Hi, I was at that show. I was fifteen, and what I remember most was that the Clash wouldn't come out until the audience properly applauded for Sam and Dave. They kept sending Cosmo out to tell the audience "Let's hear it for Sam and Dave!"

The audience was luke warm to booing, I think because of all the buzz about the first night, but they finally understood that the Clash weren't coming out until Sam and Dave received a proper ovation, so they gave them one.
Robert Damon

The critics

Lester Bangs wrote that this gig was not nearly as technically cohesive as the February Pearl Harbour Palladium show with equipment fuck ups galore but was still great. Charles Shaar Murray (of Garageland inspiration fame), Bangs reported said, “if they get anymore professional than this, they’ll turn into the Who!’

Mary Harron ‘Friday night was stunning for its concentration, energy and high-spirited attack.’

Ray Lowry ‘The Clash came out and shredded the second nights audience .. with their magnificent rock’n’roll’

Not As Good As Their First, but...,

I don't wanna brag about my punk rock "bona fides", but, well, just to brag a little, I was acutally at the Clash concert where the cover picture for this album was taken (at the old New York Palladium, since demolished for a NYU dormitory!). Of course, this album hadn't come out yet, but at that concert, the Clash did many of the songs that were featured on this album, as well as the then better known songs from their first album.

London Calling became a classic and is rightly considered so today. Still, I don't know if i'd call it "punk". The Clash were already becoming poppier by this time, which is OK. This record showed a great variety of styles (as well as a good deal of pretensiousness that overcame a lot of punk groups as they got past their first album). The Clash could pull it off, tho, unlike many of their contemporaries.

The Clash was the first punk group I ever really "got into". I found their first record, when it was still available as an import-only, in the Discomat store in Grand Central Station way back in 1978, and, along with the Stooges "Funhouse" (then also only available as an import) changed my whole way of thinking about rock & roll music. I had finally found something in the whole wretched mess of 1970s music that I could listen to. While everyone else I knew was listening to Styx, Foreigner, Toto, Boston, ELP, Yes (!!!), and I was holding my nose and trying not to puke, along came The Clash and eventually that whole long-haired mascara stained music scene went crashing into well deserved oblivion.

Eventually, I came to like other groups (Wire, Gang of Four, Joy Division, Flipper, Mission of Burma and, especially, The Fall) better than the Clash, it WAS the Clash that showed me the true path. I still consider the import version of their first album their true masterpiece. London Calling was very good, and for a while I listened to it constantly, and it is well worth buying. It is a studio album, but in a way it is such a summing up of that period, that it is almost like being there in person at a live event. Tho it is not dated, and it stands the test of time, it will still take you back to your teen age years (if you were a teenager in 1979).

BTW, the tickets for those historic Clash concerts at the Palladium cost about 10 bucks--including the teletron charges. I bought the tickets at the teletron at J&R Music world when it was still only a basement record shop, years before it became the super mega electronics and computer store it is today.

It was thirty years ago today

The Clash -- without whom I wouldn’t be who I am today (for better or worse) -- playing at the Palladium in New York City on September 21, 1979. My third rock concert. (And the first time I ever availed myself of a certain herbal substance, using the ticket stub as a “roach clip.”)

A little ragged at first, the band heated up and then provided a pressure-cooker performance. It’s the concert which imprinted “revolution rock” onto my neurons. (It also probably damaged some of my hearing early on, as I stood on the arm-rests of a seat near the front of the stage in front of a massive bank of speakers, howling at the music and snapping photographs.)

From left to right: the late Joe Strummer, Mick Jones, and Paul Simonon (whose image from that very same night, photographed in black-and-white by Pennie Smith, appears on the cover of the band’s London Calling album).

Although I eventually saw The Clash again with the same lineup - at Red Rocks here in Colorado in the summer of ‘82 on their Combat Rock tour - this night still remains the ultimate performance by the band for me. It’s not only the concert by which I judge the second and third times I saw the group, it’s probably the concert by which I judge all other concerts that I’ve seen since.

Not only were The Clash on that night, opening act The Undertones had a decent set, and then Sam & Dave (of "Soul Man" fame) unleashed a zestful performance.

My best to surviving members of The Clash: Jones, Simonon, and drummer Topper Headon. To paraphrase the lyrics of the twelfth song the band played that night (thanks to the outtasight site Black Market Clash for jogging my memory with background info on the concert): “If you read this blog tonight, have a drink on me. But go easy Step lightly Stay free.”

I was there

Ernie Mendillo
I was there and I still have the ticket to prove it! One of the greatest concerts I've ever been to. Life changing!

The Clash at the absolute height of their powers. I was there and the balcony was bouncing up and down so hard from people dancing we thought it was going to collapse. No one in that theatre sat down for a minute from beginning to end.

Just seeing this. So awesome. Thank you for posting it! Saw them in Chicago the week before (9-14-79) and it was the best show I ever saw in my life!

George Patch Head
I was there for this Absolutely Legendary Evening & I Still Have My Stub. This is in my Top 10 All Time Favorite Concerts...How do I fit 100+ concerts into my Top 10?

Dave Spencer
Saw the next stop on the 'Take the Fifth' tour 4 days later in Montreal. I believe Montreal and NYC were the only 2 places where fans got up on stage during White Riot...I was bouncing around on stage and Joe motioned me over and we were singing the chorus together into the same microphone. Undertones opened...great night. Thanks for posting. 

Did you go? What do you remember?

Info, articles, reviews, comments or photos welcome.
Please email blackmarketclash

Melody Maker: Clash in NYC- Waiting for Ivan

6 Oct 1979

text version

Mary Harron

ACCORDING to reports, it / was a hot. dead, airless summer in New York City. With nothing much happening on the local music scene, excitement centred on the English visitors. The Gang of Four were ecstatically received, scoring over the Buzzcocks, while Eddie and the Hot Rods -found a kinder welcome than they do at home...

Chris Knowles The Essential Clash Bootleg Bible

includes this gig

NME - Fastest gang in the West part 1 & 2

13th October (PDF pt1), and 20th October (PDF pt2)

The Last Gang in The West Leaves Town (HTML)

text version

NME 13 & 20 Oct Paul Morley
Paul Morley of the NME travels on the tour bus from Detroit on the 17th through to New York on the 21st interviewing and following the band.
DETAILS: The Scene. The Clash on tour of America. There's a glamorous image, with a confident, crusading edge to it. The Clash: a lot of hope and responsibility there. America: it still means a lot. Clash's current six week coast to coast tip to toe tour of the United States Of America is their first major assault.


© Gregory Ego.
Posted by Gregory Daurer ego[a]



Safe European Home
I’m So Bored with the USA
Complete Control
London Calling
White Man In Ham Palais
Koka Kola
I Fought the Law
Jail Guitar Doors
The Guns Of Brixton
English Civil War
Clash City Rockers
Stay Free
Police and Thieves
Capital Radio
Tommy Gun
Wrong ‘Em Boyo
Janie Jones
Armagideon Time
Career Opportunities
What’s My Name
White Riot

bold = video



Stay Free Instrumental
Clampdown Instrumental
Capital Radio
Capital Radio jamming
Clash City Rockers Instrumental.
Baby Please Don’t Go
Road Runner (Bo Diddley)

There are several sights that provide setlists but most mirror They are worth checking.

from Setlist FM (cannot be relied on)

from Songkick (cannot be relied on)
... both have lists of people who say they went

& from the newer Concert Database and also Concert Archives

Also useful: Ultimate Music database, All Music, Clash books at DISCOGS

Articles, check 'Rocks Back Pages'

Search all of facebook

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Search for a local library

Search auction site

Search flickr

Search Instagram

Search the internet

Search The Internet Archive

Image search

Getty Images The Clash here
Need to vary search and year

The Clash Art for Sale - Fine Art America
Collection of Clash images, need to vary search and year

WireImages here

Any further info, articles, reviews, comments or photos welcome.

Submit an article here

We are looking for scans - articles - tickets - posters - flyers - handbills - memorabilia - photos - comments / any information - you might have.

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You can also follow us on Twitter
We also have a Clash Twitter list
of other notable Clash Twitter accounts here

Blackmarketclash Links
Extensive links page can be found here with links to web, twitter, Facebook, traders etc..

If Music Could Talk
The best Clash messageboard and which also has links to downloads on its megalists
Go here for uploads and downloads. It's not a massive space so its on an as and when basis.

Also go to 101 Guitars for downloads

For the more ambitious, create a DIME account

Contact your local library here and see if they can help.

If you are searching for articles in the USA - DPLA Find the local US library link here

WorldCat? - find your local library Link

British Newspaper Archive - United Kingdom Link

Newspaper ARCHIVE - USA+ Link

Historical Newspapers - USA & beyond Link - international Link

New York Times - USA Link

Gallica - France - Not very helpful Link

Explore the British Library Link

Trove - Australia National Library Link

The Official Clash
Search @theclash & enter search in search box. Place, venue, etc

The Official Clash Group
Search @theclashofficialgroup & enter search in search box. Place, venue, etc

Joe Strummer
And there are two Joe Strummer sites, official and unnoffical here

Clash City Collectors - excellent
Facebook Page - for Clash Collectors to share unusual & interesting items like..Vinyl. Badges, Posters, etc anything by the Clash.
Search Clash City Collectors & enter search in search box. Place, venue, etc

Clash on Parole - excellent
Facebook page - The only page that matters
Search Clash on Parole & enter search in the search box. Place, venue, etc

Clash City Snappers
Anything to do with The Clash. Photos inspired by lyrics, song titles, music, artwork, members, attitude, rhetoric,haunts,locations etc, of the greatest and coolest rock 'n' roll band ever.Tributes to Joe especially wanted. Pictures of graffitti, murals, music collections, memorabilia all welcome. No limit to postings. Don't wait to be invited, just join and upload.
Search Flickr / Clash City Snappers
Search Flickr / 'The Clash'
Search Flickr / 'The Clash' ticket

I saw The Clash at Bonds - excellent
Facebook page - The Clash played a series of 17 concerts at Bond's Casino in New York City in May and June of 1981 in support of their album Sandinista!. Due to their wide publicity, the concerts became an important moment in the history of the Clash.
Search I Saw The Clash at Bonds & enter search in red box. Place, venue, etc

Loving the Clash
Facebook page - The only Clash page that is totally dedicated to the last gang in town. Search Loving The Clash & enter search in the search box. Place, venue, etc
Facebook page - Our very own Facebook page. Search & enter search in red box. Place, venue, etc

Search all of Twitter
Search Enter as below - Twitter All of these words eg Bonds and in this exact phrase, enter 'The Clash'
Images on the offical Clash site. (all images via google).
Images on the offical Clash site. site: