Asian / Australasian Tour
updated 22 Jun 2007 - punters comment
Somebody Got Murdered
A Many thanks to Simon Kay for bringing into circulation a 2nd generation tape via Jeff Dove. It’s a great shame the master tape does not yet circulate as despite being recorded on a smuggled in ghetto blaster the sound is full and not distant with all the instrumentation and vocals captured well. It’s a full on sound with guitars upfront and raw.
Recorded presumably on a C90 tape the tape cuts out abruptly at the end of Police On My Back missing the final song, White Riot.
Inevitably there is a loss of crispness and detail in the circulating recording resulting from 2 analogue transfers from the master. Despite the resultant degree of flatness this is still a very enjoyable tape capturing the electric atmosphere and a great Clash performance.
If any evidence is needed that The Clash in early 82 could be as vital, exciting and explosive as anytime in their history then a listen to the recording of this concert should surely suffice. Evidence too surely in view of Topper’s sacking that “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. The energy, brutality, intensity, excitement of the atmosphere in the hall is captured by the recording and it’s obvious why this concert had such an impact on those lucky enough to be there. Essential.
Sydney Press Conference
In keeping with the frequently surreal nature of The Clash’s tour of Asia and Australia the band stopped over on their way to New Zealand to do a press conference in Sydney to boost ticket sales; Joe in full on ranter mode held forth in the Mammals section of the Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences!
Under the headline ‘Mammals babble at the Flying Sydney Press Conference’ NZ Rolling Stone stated ‘Joe Strummer’s performance is an immensely amusing one. This wasn’t the usual Deadly Serious (Dig a Hole) affair as uninformed journalists ask the subjects inane questions, but a holy rollin’ one-man stand up, political flag waving harangue by a man who if he delivers one 10th as good live on stage must be a performer to leave others flatfooted! The Clash’s Sydney press conference was a real occasion’
Joe reportedly didn’t allow any other member of the band or indeed the assembled press to get a word in edgeways. ‘If we’d wanted to make money in Japan, we would’ve played Budokan like Bob Dylan’ Joe insisted. ’30,000 Nips jumping in the air, throw yer money on the plane and bingo! that’s rock’n’roll! We played 9 times in as many days, and never to more than 3000 people. And that’s nine days of expenses, and all’ He also added bizarrely ‘We’re here because we’re exciting. We jump about, wiggle our bums and there’s nothing wrong with that!”
Topper’s reputation meant a 4 hour customs examination before the band were allowed into Auckland on February 4th. Only one show was originally planned in Auckland and Wellington but due to demand the band added an extra Auckland show and a Christchurch concert.
The first Auckland show was certainly a memorable one and thanks to a ghetto blaster smuggled in by a fan a decent audience recording documents the event. Many thanks to Simon Kay for circulating a second generation tape via Jeff Dove and for providing press scans and photos (links opposite) and the recollections of Damian Holt of the gig. See also the 2008 recollections from the NZ shows on the New Zealand Music and Culture website (links opposite) ‘Rat Patrol From Fort Bragg - The Clash in New Zealand - February 1982’. Many thanks also to Steve Andrews for his recollections and photos of the Wellington concert and of meeting the band there.
Punk was already well established in NZ by 1982 and “The Clash’s delight in musical adventure and dance had already been taken on board by Kiwi groups.” Apart from a visit by The Ramones in 1980 The Clash were the first major “punk” group to tour New Zealand and the expectation and excitement was sky high when the band hit the Auckland stage. The band though were shocked to see a large local contingent of skinheads many with Nazi insignia. Fighting presumably between the different factions is evident from the recording. Mick asks for the fighting to stop but Joe says “That’s it punch him one!”
The gig was well covered by the local media (see links).Journalist, Colin Hogg who also interviewed Mick the next day said The Clash were “rough, raw and exciting”. He said the audience were largely awestruck by the “long awaited punk gods”. Roadies were kept busy “plucking fans from the human vice that developed between the crowd and the stage and shepherding them to safety backstage” Mick “We’ll do anything to prevent anyone getting hurt”. The band would have been delighted by Hogg’s statement “Brand New Cadillac is as close as anyone has got to the original rock and roll feel in recent years”
Arriving in the summer the band loved New Zealand (and Australia), the weather, the scenery, the beaches. Joe explained why to Roz Reines in the NME (27 March 1982). “They told me that New Zealand was like England and I imagined grey skies, grey streets, grey buildings, grey people, rain, boredom, misery, no money, no excitement, no action, no future. But then I got to New Zealand and it’s like they’re in blasted California. There are people walking around with knickers on in the street and the sun beating down, and the most beautiful scenery you're ever seen. A lush, tropical paradise. The skinheads there are bored stiff. They think London is wonderful, and when I told them I was a miserable bastard in London, it shattered their dreams!”
Having declared 1982 the Year of the Body. Joe was physically and verbally active at all times to the point of mania on the tour. NZ Rolling Stone recounted how Joe had been up at 7am the morning after his arrival, asking questions about local culture and politics and busking in the town’s main street with a ukulele bought specially for the purpose. Back at the hotel Kosmo asked about the busking “How d’you make out? “Terrible!” replied Joe.
New Zealand TV interview video
The master uncut rushes from the NZBC Shazam interview of the band members on the platform of Auckland railway station last only 5 minutes but are very entertaining. It begins with a brief clip of Joe on his recently purchased ukulele singing Shenandoah. Amongst the responses to the TV interviewer’s questions Joe says, “I like to live with a paradox, everyone’s life is a paradox. We’re not good at making life easy for ourselves “ Can you change anything through music? Joe “You can change something through music. Music is what people are turning onto for the last 30/40 years not books or art, so we’ve got more chance than anyone to change things”
Paul says “I think our spirit alone changes a lot of things for people we go on the stage in Japan for example, maybe a lot of them don’t understand what we’re saying but by the mere spirit they understand what we’re on about”
Joe “You think we’re just masturbating but we’re actually affecting people we’d play for old age pensioners (if they’d let us!” says Mick) but we don’t have to - the Stones have taken care of that now!”
Ironically in hindsight Joe adds “If the band splits up because you can’t keep it together it’s like you’ve fooled a lot of people, wasted a lot of people’s time. We keep going because we are the Real McCoy, we’re not gonna just fold up. We’re gonna be here, continue and get harder and rougher and tough, dreader than dread!”
Joe then assisted with a songbook and accompanied by Topper on clicked fingers and slapped thighs (!) attempts the blue grass standard “Who's Gonna Shoe Your Pretty Little Foot”
Julian Temple used clips from the video for Future is Unwritten.
The Clash at the Logan Campbell Centre - Rapid Magazine, NZ
As the Morricone intro is cut, Joe in classic Strummer style announces to the tightly packed, highly volatile audience, “Alright, alright. It’s quite a shock for us to see this here like back home. We’ve just come from Japan where they sit way back in the back, in the back of the BACK!” The band then launch into a charged London Calling, feeding off the energy and mania of the audience. The sound and performances tonight are raw, fast and fierce. The extended improvisations of 81 (and Japan) are largely missing, and with a heavy emphasis on songs from the “punk years” the band were surely out to prove to the many punk fans in the audience and accusations of “sell-out” that they were the original and (still) the best.
Midway through a powerful One More Time Joe is unhappy not every one in the audience is going ape! “What’s the matter over there, you came here to pose?” The recording captures the live Clash sound mix but with some distortion on the peaks and there are plenty on a pumped up Safe European Home. Joe is in top form scatting as the music drops down and Mick sings backing vocals
Each song bangs into the next. Mick is pumped up too delivering a fine vocal and lead guitar on Train In Vain. Topper adds another, this time extra long “drum solo” intro to The Leader. “Right Ginger!” quips Joe in reference to the Cream drummer. It’s an exceptional performance with terrific guitar fills from Mick, and Joe is unusually word perfect! The band are taut & honed from the Japanese dates.
Topper then takes it straight into Bankrobber with the audience clapping along. Joe stops the band early on “OK will the owner. Shut up and listen to me a minute! Will the owner of this piece of phlegm on my stomach like to come and retrieve it OK kick it off!” Mick shares lead vocals and Joe works the audience to get them to sing backing harmonies. Topper holds it altogether tremendously as they stretch out impressively.
It’s all going off in the audience and Mick tries to calm things down “Woah! No fuckin’ fighting, we didn’t come here to watch that. There’s loads of that where we come from. Dancing’s in, fighting’s out” “Fuck‘in shit hot” shouts one appreciative punter before Joe goes “Don’t you ever stop…” and the band launch into the Magnificent Seven. It features a funky riff instrumental section and is sharp, tight and very effective.
“Mr Paul Simonon” announces Joe and Mick & Topper add terrific inventive fills to Guns Of Brixton, working hard to keep these ever presents in the set fresh. “Who wants a bit of water?” Joe asks the audience. “Ulster, Ulster, Ulster” shouts from audience [they think its Sham 69?!] “Ulster?” says Mick. Joe “What do they keep chanting“ asks Joe. “Ulster, Ulster” says Mick to which Joe replies “I thought you kept saying off, off, off!” Mick “We couldn’t get further away from home if we tried and this is as far as we can get and this is a song about a dance hall!” Joe interjects “That’s it punch him one!” Mick repeats a bemused “Ulster” and the band launch into a razor sharp White Man In Hammersmith Palais. Joe adlibs sarcastically “back in the UK the New Romantics have arrived. I’ve never seen so many pretty young men in all my life! The new groups are not ”
“Alright I can’t expect it from you lot but you lot in the balcony give Topper a big hand for singing his first number in New Zealand!” Hard though to give a big hand to Ivan Meets GI Joe live at the best of times but here it’s heavy rock with out the roll treatment is pretty dire.
“Haven’t you got any punk rock bands in New Zealand?” Joe asks the audience. “I tell you its 10 times harder here it’s so hot I’m glad I’m not a punk rocker in New Zealand! You’ll have to get out of the way of the car now!” A fine Brand New Cadillac is followed by a raw but intense Janie Jones. The fast intensity is maintained as the band tear through Koka Kola segueing into I Fought The Law. After an edit for a tape turn over the sweat soaked Auckland audience are treated to a raw and abrasive Somebody Got Murdered which Joe announces “ “This is not about John Lennon” The recollection from one audience member that the band were laid back going through the motions must have a very bad memory! Joe’s “cheap crappy watch stopped” and Mick screams “Murder” as the band tear it up.
A pause before Joe says either to the band or the audience is not clear “OK never mind these things you’re singing it ain’t before, yeah after we start singing we do 4 fast normal as before” He then intones the intro to Clampdown but it’s very different from the album version and appears to be “Well the kingdom was ransacked, the jewels are put back, the you and I’s were friends. We read it in the paper, we watched it on TV, never told it the same and the metal spoon in the back of the briefcase put on the table in the toilet, and when they went into make it, the treaty was backstabbed, and you could always FAKE IT” [Any revisions, explanations?!]
It’s a fierce performance showcasing Topper’s terrific drumming. The start of Joe’s lengthy adlibs are unclear then as the band drop it down Joe continues “Shush.. and there’s a new kind of bullet been invented, which is a Teflon coated bullet which will pass through a car, through a house, through a bullet proof vest! Through 4 cars, 5 vests, 6 houses yeah they’re turning up on the street now, and you can expect them over here in about 2 years and its called the KTW bullet, pass right through us!”
The main set ends with an exceptional and extended Radio Clash. Joe’s again freeversing taking in it appears the Nazi insignias in the audience and the skinheads he met at the harbour “you’re never gonna seig heil, gotta bigger brain …see you in the harbour, go back to England …take it away and fry it!.” He continues as the band stretch out “I wanna hear the women and children being boiled alive!” Joe runs out of adlibs eventually shouting “OK boys take it home” but his band mates have other ideas Mick adding “Lord Haw Haw” to which Joe adds “Hanoi Sue, Vietnam Rose gave me a dose!” Finally the song ends with each band member adding their own improvised touches to the finish. “Thank you and good night”
The first encore are all 1977 punk standards and Mick’s guitar sound throughout the concert has a raw punk sound the band surely out to prove something to the audience. An intense abrasive Clash City Rockers is followed by Joe announcing “OK now and I am telling the truth now we’re gonna attempt to play a number that we have not played in 2 years and we have not rehearsed it once and it has a very complicated arrangement so you’re privileged spectators, and you watch us fuck it right over too!” [an exaggeration as it was last played at Bonds in June 81!]Mick then blasts out the opening chords of I’m so Bored with The USA. Topper though comes in late and the song certainly sounds unrehearsed. It’s ragged at times but raw and exciting just skirting the edge of chaos! The band then tear straight into Career Opportunities leaving the audience shouting for more as they leave the stage.
The second encore begins with an extended Jimmy Jazz with a long intro from Mick before the rest of the band come in. Mick comes up with another different guitar sound for his solo always varying, keeping songs fresh through invention. Not to be outdone Joe’s adlibs are inventive too! “Come on rover, come and sniff this bloke, he must be around here somewhere!… They didn’t find a bloody thing, one of them looked up my arsehole but we’ll draw the line there on the grounds of common decency, after all I am English and have had a good education!”
Topper keeps a steady beat on the drums as the song ends then goes into his “machine gun” attack intro to Tommy Gun. Fast and fierce and Joe’s still free versing aplenty over the extended final coda.
Before the band can blast into another song Joe pleads “No, no, no just gonna have a rest now!, if you want to you can pogo to this one!.. give you that one in 10 seconds…Don’t lay around.. A very fine Armagideon Time affords the band a break in the sweltering heat but it’s short lived as Topper’s drum roll takes it straight into a storming, stunning Complete Control played more 1977 style, Mick and Joe trading vocals but Topper’s terrific drumming is the standout.
An edit restarts with the 3rd encore and a slow bass drum beat before Mick’s guitar blasts in on a raw but effective Police On My Back. The cassette cuts out almost at the end of the song and the reported finale of White Riot
“If it ain’t broke why fix it” Indeed.
copyright photographs by jonathan ganley
Did you go? What do you remember?
John Graham Mellor - better known as Joe Strummer - awoke on the morning of February 6 1982 in a hotel room on Auckland's Anzac Ave. The previous evening his band the Clash had performed the first of six shows in New Zealand.
After posting a few notes about the show and the tour under the doors of various band members and crew, Strummer picked up his ukulele and walked downtown for an hour or two of busking, pausing only to quiz passer-by about life in New Zealand and Waitangi Day.
I would love to have seen that.
One consolation - that first show was for me one of the best rock shows ever. The Clash were at their peak that night.
And like the Fall’s Mark E Smith a few months later, Strummer was bemused by all the skinheads he saw in New Zealand.
So where did all the Auckland skins go? Maybe they did all move to Christchurch.
As far as The Clash gig goes I am 46 years old now and that night is still by far and away the best night of my life.
I nearly missed the whole experience as while my mate and I were waiting inside Logan Campbell Centre for the gig to start one of the Bootboys gave me the biggest roach (joint/spliff) I had ever seen and said that I could have it. I started chugging away on it and when I looked up a couple of cops walking the beat saw what I was up to and made a beeline for me.
They were about six feet away and all the lights went out and The Clash started belting out London Calling. I just legged it as far away from the scene of the crime that I could and ended up bumping into Rena Owen. (a New Zealand Maori film actress, best known for her role in the film Once Were Warriors (1994). In 2005, she appeared in Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith as Nee Alavar, and in Mee-Shee: The Water Giant)
Rena had been a friend of mine for a couple of years so I stayed with her for the gig. Her favourite song was Clash City Rockers and she wanted them to play it so she went to the side of the stage and in between songs asked Mick Jones to play it (as only Rena would do!) She also asked him where they were staying and he told them it was the Town House hotel.
After the gig we decided to go down there and try to meet them. We bumped into Kim Willoughby (New Zealand’s original pop princess, a self-confessed “rock chick” who virtually grew up in a recording studio with her drummer dad) in the carpark of Logan Campbell Centre so she came along for the ride. We were thrown out of reception twice by the night porter at the Town House and snuck back in twice.
On the third eviction they had called a security guard and he had hold of Rena and I and was physically removing us from the premises. As we were being pulled down the exit coridoor I heard English voices joking and laughing. I turned to Rena and said "Let it be The Clash" and sure enough we bumped straight into them. I looked at Joe Strummer and said that we had come to see them and were being thrown out. He said that we were with them and took us through to a lounge area at the hotel.
Somehow a couple of really drunk strippers made it in as well. The Clash blew the strippers off straight away, Kim sat in the corner like a stunned mullet which left just Rena and I to talk with the band. We were with them for around an hour and a half while they unwound and were waiting for their meals. We talked with Joe Strummer and Paul Simenon the most.
Topper Headon wafted in and out of the conversations and Mick Jones didn't want a bar of it and went to his room. It was amazing as Joe and Paul had more questions for us than we did of them. Wanting to know what we did on a day to day basis, names of the local bands etc. They liked The Screaming Meemees name best. We tried to tell them what a blast it was for us to be meeting them but Joe turned it all around saying that for him being 29 and being able to see other parts of the world as opposed to being stuck in London was what blew him away.
He played a few old rock'n'roll songs on the house piano and their meal came and we floated out of there.The only regret that I have of that night was that my brother, Adam wasn't with me. We lead seperate lives in those days but I knew he was probably Auckland's biggest Clash fan and I was the one that was in the right place at the right time.
Damian Holt 2007.
Mysterex - New Zealand Music and Culture
SUNDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 2008
The Punk revolution was already won in New Zealand by the time the Clash breached our shores in February 1982. The means of production had been seized. The Auckland, Dunedin, Wellington and Christchurch music scenes were alive with punk’s fire. The national scene glutted with venues and fans. Quality independent groups such as Blam Blam Blam, The Penknife Glides, Danse Macabre, The Instigators, The Newmatics, The Androidss, and The Screaming Mee Mees had stepped up to touring the main cities and the provinces.
At your local rock dive you could catch The Prime Movers, The Chills, The Stones, Sneaky Feelings, The Clean, Mainly Spaniards, Bill Direen, Ballon D’essai, The Gordons, Ritchie Venus and The Blue Beetles, This Sporting Life, Naked Spots Dance, Beat Rhythm Fashion, Desperate Measures, Nocturnal Projections, and The Dabs stepping out at the Reverb Room, Rumba Bar, Gladstone, Station Hotel, Mainstreet, Bellblock, DB Onerahi, Sweetwaters Festival, the Hillcrest, the Captain Cook, the Windsor Castle, and others. Punk the ideal predominated the restless intelligence and icon busting zeal - taking old things, pumping them full of youth and arrogance and energy, making them smart and street again.
The throbbing live scene was reflected by an unprecedented Kiwi chart presence. In 1981, 24 singles infused with the energy and ideals of punk made the New Zealand Top Fift
By 1982, New Zealand record companies were responding quickly. The month the Clash arrived Joy Division, The Fall, Dead Kennedys, The Associates, Orange Juice, Depeche Mode, Kid Creole and the Coconuts, The Go Gos, UB40, Simple Minds, the Jam, Spandau Ballet, XTC, Japan, Cure, Madness, Soft Cell, Bow Wow Wow, Haircut 100, Fun Boy Three, DAF, Bad Manners, New Order, Killing Joke and the Go Betweens all had records released.
But those doubts and arguments were quickly pushed aside when the tour was announced. We’re talking first icons of punk here. The Clash shows with their oldies embedded sets would please punk purist and freethinker alike.
The Clash - Auckland
Jeremy Chunn - journalist/Henchmen bassist
“At the airport, always filled with enormous Polynesians pulling taped-shut suitcases, Joe was the first to stroll into the strange scrum of arrivals. Paul and Topper followed soon afterwards.
“Then Mick came out and was thrilled to be greeted thus: "Aw, Mick Jones, ya cunt, eh." He was wearing nice brothel creepers with metal-tipped laces. Two questions: Where are we now? and; Who is this dick kid?
Benny Lee - on the first show January 2001
Eric Vanderhoven. Christchurch punk.
“Strummer pranced on wearing one of the worst looking guitars in history, but he played his heart out. Which rhythm guitarist works harder? Mick Jones also dressed in rebel chic (black boots, wristband) played his lead parts with more invention than the recorded versions. Simonon looked basic, but during reggaed numbers such as ‘Armageddon Time’ and ‘Bankrobber’ his looks defied his abilities.”
3000 people were packed into the Logan Campbell Centre, described as a joyless concrete blockhouse renowned for its poor sound and situated in the middle of the Epsom Showgrounds. It’s still in use today.
Promoted by Stewart MacPherson as part of his Superock series, a second Auckland show was added on the Saturday due to extra demand. The Clash is billed to perform the entire two hour show without a support band. They come on an hour late, and perform a ninety minute plus song set with an emphasis on the ‘punk era’ songs.
Ben Staples remembering the first night in 2001.
There are several sights that provide setlists but most mirror www.blackmarketclash.co.uk. They are worth checking.
from Setlist FM (cannot be relied on)
from Songkick (cannot be relied on)
& from the newer Concert Database
If you know of any articles or references for this particular gig, anything that is missing, please do let us know.
Auckland Star 7 Feb 1982
Auckland Star 12 Feb 1982
Auckland Great Photos © photographs by jonathan ganley to the faraway towns
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Radio Interview The Clash (from FM Broadcast master recording)
Folk rock. Australian rock.
Kosmo Vinyl, and Joe Strummer & Paul Simonon from The Clash interviewed by Geoff King.
Taken from the early 80s Melbourne-based cassette magazine Fast Forward, issue #10 March 1982. The interview was recorded in Sydney the previous month. A couple of musical excerpts (from the original albums) have been edited out .
1 February 1982
There is a brilliantly re-masterd video (by a fan) circulating amongst collectors with the best video source synched to best audio. It is from a VHS tape from broadcast. This Youtube broadcast looks to an upload of this.
If Music Could Talk
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