Pearl Harbour Tour supported by The Rentals & Bo Diddley

Last updated 8 March 2007
Last updated 7 July 2008 - link to photos by Cathrine Vanaria
All photos are available as 16"x20" prints for $300US
C.A. Vanaria, 50 Hudson Drive, New Fairfield, Connecticut,
06812, United States
Daytime phone 203-791-1474 -
E-mail -

cdr 1 - unknown gen - Sound 2.5 - 68min - 20 tracks

cdr 2 - low gen - Sound 2.5 - 68min - upgrade - 20 tracks

cdr 3 - master - Sound 3.5 - 74min - upgrade - 20 tracks

Bob Gruen took his famous and brilliant live photos at this gig, capturing the excitement, drama and energy of The Clash, (see his recent excellent book and his website).

The seminal US Rock critic Robert Christgau reviewed this gig (and the Palladium gig the next night) in the
Village Voice dated 5/3/79. Christgau was to be a highly influential supporter of The Clash stateside.

He describes how the 1800 seat venue was sold out in an hour for an English band that were getting airplay on only one Boston radio station.

The Coaster’s Riot in Cell Block No.9 faded out before Joe, “denimy, still bezippered and fatigued, Paul slash necked red uniform and Mick in turquoise shirt unbuttoned, all with greased back hair”. Christgau goes on accurately “no one has ever made rock’n’roll as intense as The Clash is making right now, not Little Richard or Jerry Lee, not the early Beatles, or middle Stones or the inspired James Brown or pre-operatic Who, not Hendrix or Led Zep, not MC5 or The Stooges, or Pistols or Ramones”.

Mick was playing a borrowed guitar having smashed his in Washington the night before. Christgau wrote that “on our side of the PA this was an ecstatic experience but behind the fucked up monitors, the band felt they were putting out a lousy show”.

Photos by Cathrine Vanaria

7 are from Harvard Square Theater, Cambridge MA, USA (16 Feb 1979)
1 is actually from Boston Orpheum (Sept 19th 1979)
3 from the Boston Orpheum - one of which wrongly attributed to Harvard (March 9 1980)
All photos are available as 16"x20" prints for $300US
C.A. Vanaria, 50 Hudson Drive, New Fairfield, Connecticut,
06812, United States
Daytime phone 203-791-1474 -
E-mail -

The recording in circulation is a quite listenable audience recording. This one suffers some tape wear and better copies may exist, though this came from a good source.

Clearest part is the percussion, the vocals are reasonably clear as well and the lead is there as always, but the bass is buried as the sound edges toward the top end. There are also some distant problems resulting in some slight echo and some very faint noise/hiss. The atmosphere is captured well with the audience responding in loud appreciation to each song.

Guns On The Roof is now the second song, brought forward in the set list at Washington the night before, as the song was getting the bulk of limited airplay The Clash were getting on US radio.

The Clash are fired up throughout, delivering great intense performances. Joe has a few digs at the elitism of the nearby University “We want to move the town to the Clash City Rockers…fat chance!” and “ we’re gonna try a bit of funk a bit of blue beat, entitled White Man in Harvard University”. Police & Thieves and Capital Radio are the usual highlights; the drama before Police & Thieves gets a new twist with mountains of echo filling the theatre and Joe includes “revolution rock, it is the brand new rock” demonstrating the popularity of this song in the Clash camp months before the London Calling sessions.

Capital Radio is introduced as Neil Diamond’s latest and Joe ad libs at length at the end of the song about “trains, tracks and dead heroes”. Joe Strummer very rarely repeated his ad-libs throughout The Clash, just going with whatever inspiration came to him. There was none of the pre-planned show biz of other acts producing supposedly off the cuff moments night after night.


I'm So Bored with the USA
Guns On the Roof
Jail Guitar Doors
Drug Stabbing Time
Tommy Gun
City Of the Dead
Hate and War
Clash City Rockers
White Man In Ham Palais
English Civil War
Safe European Home
Stay Free
Police and Thieves
Capital Radio
Janie Jones
Julie's / Drug Squad
Complete Control
London's Burning
White Riot

A Riot of Our Own pg

New York Rocker Gig Review

Diamondz Fanzine (unknown)
... Cover ... Harvard Square Cambridge Review by Brian Goslaw

Best Magazine [French]
...page1 ...page2 ...page3 ...page4 ...page5 ...page6
Rough English Translation

Refused Visas

Q Magazine UK May 2001
Comments from the band and others on the Pearl Harbour Tour february 1979

Melody Maker
Tour Review

A3 Billboard Ad for the Tour

Melody Maker front page only
The Riot Squad
Allan Jones follows the Clash across America

Gary Bushells Tour Notes

Dolly Parton Impersonators

Sylvia Simmonds Tour Notes

Village Voice
Tour Notes

Strummer's Pearl Harbour Diary

Trouser Press
End of Tour Interview

Los Angeles Times January 20, 1979
Clash Crests on New Punk Wave

Time Magazine
5 March 1979

Jenny Lens (clash photographer)
Photos and Exhibition

Any further info / reviews appreciated

A3 ad (from poster) placed on page 105 of Billboard 3 March 1979

Jan 31 Commodore Ballroom, Vancover, Canada
Feb 7 Berkely Community Centre California
Feb 8 Geary Temple (Fillmore), San Francisco CA
Feb 9 Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica CA
Feb 13 Agora, Cleveland OH
Feb 15 Ontario Theatre, Washington DC
Feb 16 Harvard Square Theater, Cambridge MA
Feb 17 Palladium, New York NY
Feb 20 The Rex Danforth Theatre, Toronto, Canada
We were going to drive to Toronto from New York, but we were snowed in and except for the back-line vehicle, the rest of us flew direct to Cananda. Scratchy