Bonds Residency
Supported by The Sirens and Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five

updated 22 May 2006
updated 14 July 2008 added 2x JFK photos
updated 25 Dec 2008 - added punters comments
updated 30 Dec 2008 - added support band info below for the Sirens
updated 8 Jan 2010 - added punters comments
added photo of the Sirens on stage new year 2014


Top of the RCA Building - Bonds ©1981 Bob Gruen -
http://www.starfileonline.com

cdr - tape 1 - Sound 4 - time 106min - d-mast - tracks 26 42.41

cdrtape 2 – Sound 4 – less distant – time 118 min - d-mast – tracks 26

audio - Backstage radio interview with Mick/Kosmo 4.16min

audio - Rumoured there was a "Bonds Karaoke" disc floating around a long time ago which mixed out some vox from one of the shows. WANTED IF EXISTS

video - Bonds TV News Reports – short live clips and interviews from Channel 4 & 7 (on Clash on TV Vol.1) 6mins
News clips of - Armagideon Time - Bankrobber - I’m So Bored With The USA - London Calling - Magnificent 7 - Brand New Cadilac + press conference and news reports outside

Video - Clash on Broadway Reels - all the original reels have been found and are now with Sony. UPDATE1 The footage the footage that was found is very expensive to transfer. Don hasn't yet ID'd the film boxes (03/2015). UPDATE2 On the Facebook page dedicated to the summer 1981 Nyc residence, from one Kevin Bud Jones that was hired by Don Letts to help shout ing The Clash on Broadway docufilm:‪"We shot one complete show with multiple cameras and a 24 track mobile recorder. We also shot most of every show with one camera and in house 8 track recording. The band wore the same gear every night and Topper was such a consistent drummer - and the band well rehearsed - that we were able to build edits from different nights with no trouble at all."‬ (03/2015)

audio - Radio & TV News Reports – a collection of news pieces reporting on the ticket crises at it happenned over the first few days- 25 mins - updated Jan 2009

Italy to New York

When The Clash landed at JFK airport in New York on the night of the 25th May 1981 they had no idea that their residency at a Broadway nightclub would create such a furore and nationwide media coverage that it became a pivotal event in their assault on America, helping to propel them into the major league Stateside. As Kosmo Vinyl has succinctly put it, “People who didn’t have straight trousers and short hair suddenly knew who we were. It got out – it was big!”. The Bonds concerts became one of the most enduring aspects of the Clash legend.

As the band made their way through JFK airport though, the prospect of the band playing 8 concerts (including an under 18 matinee) in the city had generated only limited media interest; only 12 reporters turned up despite Bonds laying on a bus for the event. Photos were duly taken of the band (with their ghetto blasters) and before they and their entourage set off for the Gramercy Hotel, the Clash prophetically promised New York “something special”.


The Clash at JFK
picture copyright www.Corbis.com


The Clash at the JFK Airport awaiting pick up
Courtesy of a generous Clash fan somewhere


The Clash at the JFK Airport awaiting pick up
Courtesy of a generous Clash fan somewhere


The Clash after a press conference announcing a concerts in New York NYC 5/27/81 by SoHo Weekly News chief photographer Allan Tannenbaum


The Clash at the back of Gramercy Hotel

It would be wrong to think that there was no excitement amongst the press at the bands visit (the New York Times had run a background piece a week before but it in no way compared to the excitement amongst the New York public. When tickets went on sale in early May, fans jammed the ticket office phones from the early hours.

Queues waited outside for 7 hours only to be told there were no tickets and to come back the next day! Bob Gruen’s book includes a photo of fans camping out overnight at Bonds in order to get tickets. For each of the 8 planned concerts 3,500 tickets were immediately sold.

Wall of Posters - Bonds ©1981 Bob Gruen -
http://www.starfileonline.com

Mountain to Mohammed

On Bernie’s return in February 81 the plan had been to tour European cities, then the USA and then the UK in autumn, Epic though refused to finance a US tour. Bernie came up with the idea of playing residencies in New York, Paris and London. Instead of the usual band travelling to the fans, it would be reversed or as Joe put it “It’s the mountain coming to Muhammad”

Joe recalled in 1996 for Mojo; “Bernie had this idea to do 7 nights in various cities, because it enables you to hang out and get in touch with the place. It makes it far more of an event, far more intimate…It was good fun, a real golden time”. Mick when back in New York in the 90’s with BAD said, “ We ran this town. We took Broadway. De Niro was bringing his kids to see us, and the city stopped. The Clash were in town”

picture copyright www.Corbis.com

Culture Clash

The Clash’s knowledge and growing interest in the emerging new black rap music was way ahead of the vast majority of their white fans. Their choice of support acts was typically daring; at Bernie’s insistence they had to be “culturally interesting and progressive”.

The seven-night stand at Bonds International Casino at Times Square (now the Virgin Megastore, if you're curious) figured a varied support. In one of those acts of passionately awkward idealism which characterized the Clash's career, they booked opening acts against punk type: rappers Grandmaster Flash and the Treacherous Three, The Sugerhill Gang, Funkapolitan, Lee Perry, Texan bard Joe Ely, and a forgotten horn-section-and-skinny-tie band called the Nitecaps. And, plucked fresh off the stage of CBGB's, Miller Miller Miller & Sloane and a KRAUT who had formed 3 weeks earlier with only 3 demo songs and who never played live. Plus bands that showed The Clash’s continuing identification and admiration for punk; The Dead Kennedys, The Fall, The Slits, and The Bloods (not to mention The Brattles!)

New York Radio Station WNEW sponsored the Clash at BONDS Casino in Times Square.

Addendum: A strike in Britain had left 5 British bands in the UK and only 3 managed to make it with the Clash. Only the Slits, Funkapolitan and The Equators, who were slated for the matinee shows, made it. Left behind were the remains of Selector, The B-People , The Bell Stars, Aswad and most of all Theatre of Hate whom Mick had produced their debut album.

American bands slated included The Bush Tetras, ESG a womans funk band from New York. They had requested Kurtis Blow but Mick said he 'was tro expensive'!

Futura 2000

Futura 2000, real name Lenny, a graffiti artist from Brooklyn was among the Bonds crowd (also including Gerb, Kiley Jenkins, Josh Cheuse) that befriended the Clash and introduced them to Fab Five Freddie and the local hip-hop world. Futura collaborated with the Clash first by spraying graffiti behind them (notably on the Tom Snyder show) and then by performing a rap on tour later in 81, which they later recorded together.

The Clash deserve greater recognition as the first white band to intertwine the new Black culture of hip hop, break dancing and graffiti into the group and their live shows. The Clash’s “musical distillery” was a catalyst for change. White rock fans at Bonds got their first taste of what was happening in the Bronx and Harlem.

Magnificent Dance, much to the band’s pleasure was getting repeated plays on black station WBLS. Pearl Harbour, now with Paul was DJ for the Bonds shows and got plenty of stick for playing a diverse range of music that reflected the band’s (if not the audiences) tastes.

Maybe not surprisingly many of those watching Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five on this opening night at Bonds found this new culture clash too much to accept. TV news reports from this opening night show missiles being thrown at the stage and fans booing and shouting abuse. The Clash were embarrassed and angry at the reaction of their fans, and on the second night Mick dedicated Magnificent Seven to Grandmaster Flash “without them this song may not have existed”.

Support Bands

Thanks to Laura for the following info on the Sirens...

From: "Laura DJ" <dejesuslauraann-at-gmail.com>
Date: 22 October 2008

i noticed you have the sirens on the tour date list from 81 as playing with treacherous three, that's not true, I was one of the Sirens, the guitarist, and we played after Grand Master Flash, and before the Clash.

It was my idea to support the Clash. My manager charlie martin who built the sound system at CB's and Bonds was getting directions from the owners/managers who were in jail (studio 54 fame) and i had read an article in the nme or soho news or one of the music papers of the day and joe strummer said in the article they like all girl bands opening up for their shows. So i ran over to charlie showed him the article and suggested he get on the phone and reach out to his contacts and get the clash. The rest is history. He did it and we opened their first show at bonds. Grand Master Flash opened for us!

Fans who were there...

There are though differing opinions on why the fans booed, reflected by two contributors to Satch’s Forum who were in the audience:

Snowman

“I had tickets for all 8 of the original Bonds Performances. I was right up front opening night when the club was overpacked by double. Quite a few people passed out and had to lifted and surfed to the stage area to be removed. Bouncers were passing out jugs of water to the front.

If my memory serves me correctly, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were the very first opening act (4 or 5 per night) and they SUCKED! I told my friend who had been drinking a premixed bottle of vodka and orange juice to chuck the bottle at the group (he did).

It was then that the rappers went into a tirade of "The Clash asked us to be here. They wanted us to perform". Though I love GF&TF5 they couldn't be any worse live. To be squeezed into a sardine can, and hear a pounding bass drum and nothing else was more than anyone should bear.

I LOVE Grandmaster Flash, and they were AWFUL. As a matter of fact they were beyond awful. It wasn't racism, it was a matter of an over packed house and a group that wasn't making music, it was barely noise. What would you call listening to a kick drum for 10 - 15 minutes? I saw them a few years later on Long Island where the levels were decent and you could understand what they rapped. It was great.

Leaving, I literally couldn't stand up straight; there were fire marshals at every door. Since I had tickets for the original 8 nights bought at Bonds, my ticket was not valid the following evening. But, I saw 8 shows, and they were all fantastic.”

David S

“Grandmaster Flash did open for the boys at Bonds. I was there and thought it was really closed-minded and small the way the crowd reacted. They wouldn't even give basic courtesy. Grandmaster Flash was right; the Clash did ask him to play, and frankly the reaction of a white crowd to an inner city act like that had to smack of racism.

Some reports have The Slits also on the bill on the 28th but it appears from the press review that they did not play this night.

Press concert reviews

On this the first night at Bonds all the problems with the closing of the club for supposed safety reasons and the rescheduling of later concerts lay ahead. The excellent article in Boston Rock 1 2 3 4 states that at 11-30pm the last 100 or so ticket holders were refused access because the club was packed and that tellingly Police cars and fire trucks and firemen were already outside.

The temperature inside was very hot, some people were fainting, the official count was 3600 but The Clash’s crew estimated it at more like 4,500. Although crowded the concert went off without any problems.

Stephen Holden writing in the New York Times 30th May 'Clash Melee Points Up Danger of Overselling' wrote of the concert; “The Clash’s power comes from their ability to turn song after song into a political and spiritual rallying cry with a tremendous rhythmic propulsion and emotional immediacy”. Rather tempered by “Their exclusively political stance is as limited as their melodic range, which is not much better than Three Blind Mice In concert 9/10ths of their lyrics are unintelligible.”

A further press review from an Unknown source: “The sound was abysmal, with only Topper Headon’s whiplash drumming surviving the trebly collision of guitars and vocals waffling around the hall”. A highlight was correctly identified as Radio Clash going straight into Complete Control.

The Bonds Residency is well covered by the existing Clash biographies by Gray, Gilbert and Needs and no doubt will feature in Chris Salewicz’s authorised Joe Strummer biography.

Chris wrote in Mojo in 94 that the Bonds residency was “the apex of The Clash, who in Manhattan in the summer of 81 simply seemed like the most perfect rock’n’roll group in the world and those 2 weeks the perfect rock’n’roll time…the audiences went crazy for The Clash in a way I’d never seen a more reserved British audience behave, even truly crackers crowds like those at the Glasgow Apollo…

This group was a powerhouse, tight tough and immeasurably confidant. You were struck by their virtuosity, their power and the variety of the material. You had no doubt that The Clash was the best rock’n’roll group there had ever been”

Backstage Radio Interview with Mick/Kosmo
on the opening night

Like other post gig interviews at Florence and Paris, Mick is very candid, and confident enough to spell out the politics of the Clash more openly.

Backstage at Bonds ©1981 Bob Gruen -
http://www.starfileonline.com

Mick complains about the sound at Bonds and there's a quick resume of the Fire Marshalls attendance at the gig where Mick like many is caought in the confusion "I think we have a bit of a problem about the number of people supposed to be here, mmm [pause] I dunno [confused]"

The interviewer blind to the events about to unfurl moves on to the political aspect of the gig and representatives of the Democratic Revolutionary Front of neighbouring El Salvador who were allowed to make a short statement whilst the band played on whilst leaflets were dropped.

The interviewer expands on this support asking Mick about Central Amerca and the need to bring to people's consciences a message which the media don't want or are unwilling to.

At which point Kosmo, says sorry and interupts the interview to speak to Mick, says he has spoken to Paul and Joe and speaks about the problems though it is difficult to hear what he is says. He suggests one show tomorrow and see what happens then they'll look elsewhere to play. He says "deal" and Mick replies "yeh deal". Kosmo adds they can go on and do an couple of extra shows.

He tells Mick that Bernie is outside the front door [freaking] out and Bernie had said to Kosmo 'This is the last time I speak to you as a Clash employee' but Kosmo tells Mick what he said in reply; "It doesn't matter cos I rarely got payed". Mick laughs and turns to the interviewer, faced with the escalating opening night problems, in a matter of fact polite way suggests "end of interview then".

Video /Clash on Broadway/TV News Reports

TV cameras from 2 channels covered the concert for the news channels on the opening night and good quality video dubs circulate on Clash On TV Vol.1. Channel News 4 has live clips of Armagideon Time, Bankrobber and I’m So Bored With The USA.

Seperately there is footage that includes the press conference and nearly all of London Calling uncut with the band in the dressing room, running up the stairs and on stage, though this may be a mix of the opening press conference and Don Letts footage from the 9th June.

Clash on TV [also booted identically as TV Calling]Clash on TV begins with a classic Joe interview clip - “Everywhere, everything is no good, everybody’s walking around going this is no good, everything is gone wrong” cuts to a live clip of Brand New Cadillac, then back to Joe “So there’s no time to stand around with some nice pair of velvet trousers on going on about what you’re gonna do to your women tonight!” Paul is also interviewed about their support of political issues.

Channel 7 live has short clips of London Calling and Magnificent Seven, and includes an interview clip with Kosmo. It also shows missiles being thrown at Grandmaster Flash.

These reports though broadcast on the 29th have live footage definitely from the 28th May, “last night” as it states on screen and then goes onto say “If you want to see them tonight you must have ticketron tickets” and talks about the situation prior to the City Building Department closing Bonds indefinitely on the Saturday 30th morning which resulted in the mini-riot when the matinee crowd were turned away.

Footage form the 9th [aka Don Letts CoB footage]

The CoB Trailer found on Essential Clash, Clash on Broadway and most of Don Letts footage seems to be fropm the 9th. London Calling sound is dubbed from the 9th June master using the master [as opposed to remixed broadcast version] where Micks vocals are out of the mix almost. Essential Clash contain no other tracks.

Clash on Broadway [Westway DVD Bonus] The Clash on Broadway found on Westway DVD extras is certainly the best. It contains London Calling, which seems to be dubbed again from the 9th but from the radio broadcast version with Micks vocals in the mix? Most of London Calling features.

Interspersed with Dons New York footage CoB then includes most of Guns of Brixton which is part dubbed. Quite of lot of Safe European Home which is dubbed with the original studio version. Only when we get to nearly full versions of Charlie Don't Surf and Radio Clash is the original sound.

There is footage of the press conference and nearly all of London Calling but this circulates seperately.

This starts with press conference, backstage, 16 Tons play on, London Calling nearly full [probably the same length as Westway? but the sound plays on to a montage of NYC/Clash pictures]. The sound is remixed from [Trick or Treat bootleg] radio broadcast from the 9th June as Westway.

MTV Rockumentary is same as Westway/Clash on TV/Essential DVD but with only very edited clips of the press conference and London Calling. Nothing new except a couple of comments form Mick and Paul.

Photos taken from the 9th further corroborate the date of the TV footage classic rock concert photos. Paul’s in a turquoise vest and black leathers, Mick in white trousers and red shirt and Joe in all red.

Clash on Broadway never released

The press conference was held on the 27th in Bonds foyer and shots from it including Mick’s “sell out” explanation are shown in Clash On Broadway on the Westway To The World and Essential Clash DVD’s. Sadly Topper’s sacking appears to be the reason this film was never released; in May 82 it was reported in the press that the film was almost complete and would shortly be released. But shortly after he was sacked, Topper took out an injunction preventing the release of the film and it went into storage and was later destroyed. What is left of the film though does capture the excitement, the chaos and the cultural changes of the Bonds residency very well.

Clash on Broadway film UPDATE

Update: March 2007. Researchers for the Julian Temple Strummer film, The Future is Unwrtten unearthed the full set of reels shot by Don Letts. Of which over 90% was recoverable. They had been kept in a garage lock in South London for over 25 years.

They turned up purely by accident. The whole load of film reels that had been originally shot on 60 millimeter for a film called Clash on Broadway. The film, shot in New York in 1981, was principally going to be a clash movie. However it never actually got finished. The only version of the film that existed was a cutting copy as described above in the various releases, it wasn't great quality.

The film researchers heard about a man who lived in South London, and he had a whole lot of film reels and he wasn't quite sure what they were. They visited him at his house and he told the story about he how he acquired these film reels, not neccessarily by straight forward means, he just had them. And for oer 25 years he sat on them. He kept them in his cellar, he did move house several times but always took them with him. There are 50 film reels from clash on Broadway. It includes amazing footage like The Clash visiting Martin Scorsese on the set of king of comedy. A real find.

We at BMC just hope that all of it and we believe there may be about 20 hours worth, finds its way into some bonus DVD.

message posted recently on Clash City
(Satch's - If Music Could Talk)

"I was told by the film makers that all the reels had turned up but they didn't know what state they were in. They had been sat there in a lock in South East London for 25 years. When I got told they said they had possession of them and they were nervous as to whether they were preserved or not. A week later I got an email saying most of the reels where ok. About 5-10% may be lost.

"Well, I collected 40 film reels and am planning to go and look at them next week. Some are pretty badly damaged and I don't know yet if they are repairable. It's certainly not all the rushes either but it looks like most of them are there. The Clash aren't aware yet that we have these - it seems premature to be telling them if the footage is in too bad a state to use, but it all looks hopeful. I'll keep you posted."

"Not much is damaged. The garage film footage of CO Broadway is mostly fine, the only damaged stuff is not live footage. I watched everything but only had a limited amount transferred to tape as it was so expensive. There was quite a lot of Bonds stuff in the Clash on Broadway rushes that I found. "

"Regarding the Clash on Broadway release, who knows - the rushes will probably be handed back to Sony as they are the joint rights holder along with the Clash so who knows? But it's going to need a lot of restoration before that - it's a big job."

Filming shelved?

"I worked for the Clash during the Summer of 1981 Bond's shows. They filmed everything for the intended "Clash on Broadway" film...you couldn't take a leak without a camera in your face.

As I understand it the project was trashed when the band split up (I think it was when Topper left) shortly after the tour, and they were never able to work out the legal details while everyone was feuding. Noam"

El Salvador

The Clash’s support for the Sandinistas in Nicaragua had received such publicity that representatives of the Democratic Revolutionary Front of neighbouring El Salvador were encouraged enough to approach them.

Willing to help the cause the band agreed to let them man a stall at the venue, but were reportedly unwilling to take the stage to make speeches. However on this first night at Bonds, during Washington Bullets, a member of the Democratic Revolutionary Front was allowed to make a short statement whilst the band played on (see later Gig review).

A brief shot of them can be found on Westways Clash on Broadway outside with flags.

Leaflets were reportedly dropped from the ceiling. The Clash’s political stance was stressed still further by the song segueing into I’m So Bored With The USA.

Alan Lewis in Sounds challenged Joe on the contradictions in their support of such a cause but Joe responded “I have no confusion about this. I know what I’m here to do and I’m doing it”

The Venue

Following their appearance at the Palladium in 1980 The Clash had refused to play in New York unless they could play in a venue they thought suitable, i.e. an unseated dance hall. In February, Bernie and Kosmo had come to New York to seek out a suitable venue and agreed on Bonds which seemed ideal; it could hold 4000 with minimal discomfort (fire exits would prove the problem) but it was comparatively intimate and had character (art deco interior).

It was a former men’s department store with a lino floor and beams and a makeshift stage. Local promoters could not understand why The Clash did not play a couple of nights at Madison Square Garden (16,000 capacity) like everyone else. Indeed Chris Salewicz was asked to write a piece for Soho News “to find the story behind the story!”

Bonds was on Broadway as it enters Times Square, real Taxi Driver territory which must have appealed to the band who were great fans of the film. There is actually a clip of Bonds in the opening scenes in Taxi Driver. Indeed film fantasy actually crossed over into reality when Clash fan Scorcese invited the band to appear in his current project, Gangs of New York and write music for it.

J. Blocher writing in a fanzine gives an excellent description of the interior of Bonds and the experience of seeing The Clash there:

“The doors opened at 8pm, we went up a carpeted spiral staircase surrounded by barbed wire and Mooseheads. We went into a large lobby and bar, with Clash concession stands. Through a large bank of double doors we located the dance floor, strobing lights - stunning glow in the dark things, half inflated silver spacemen hanging through trap doors in the ceiling. The dance floor itself was huge with recessed balconies at 2 sides to handle the large number of techies apparently required to keep all the lights flashing and the mikes feeding back. The facilities at Bonds were dance or drop! There was absolutely no seating anywhere.”

In the photo below Bonds is the low building on the right.



Bonds as it is now


One major audience source for all 17 gigs

Remarkably recordings circulate from all 17 of the Bonds concerts. Most of these were recorded by the same taper and are of a similar quality; decent audience recordings that suffer from distance from the taper to the stage and the less than perfect acoustics of the venue. The quality of these tapes benefit considerably from them being transferred to DAT tape from the master analogue recordings. Professional recordings were also made for FM radio on the 9th June and by Epic on the 13th June (From Here To Eternity).

Encores from the 29th and 28th switched
Two tapes, one correct, one incorrect

The recording from the first night is a typical Bonds audience recording. Several different tapes have been credited to the 28th May but thanks to the TV reports live clips and press reviews it is possible to confirm the correct recording from the night.

1st tape, (DAT Master) incorrect encores

There are two seemingly different tapes from this night that are from different sources. The most commonly credited to the 28th May tape has the wrong encores added on.

A live clip of Armagideon Time on the News 4 TV report (itself confirmed as the 28th May) has Joe adlibbing “the calculation, the computation”.

These encores (from One More Time onwards) are found on the 29th tape (and the 28th tape encores are form the 29th).

Joe announces Armagideon Time as "Willie Williams' Armagideon Time". There is a lot of noise on the correct 28th encores and someone shouts "White Riot" leading into Armagideon Time (there is no shout on the the 2nd source). This tape also begins precisely at the beginning of a For a Few Dollars More intro.

Correct 2nd tape (alternate source)

The second tape begins with Barry Scartchy Myers (DJ) playing a few songs and then Morricone intro (For a Few Dollars More). The encores from the 1st tape are probably from the 29th May as the show ends again with I’m So Bored With The USA, the final song on only the first Bonds concerts. Strangely the generally credited 29th May tape has the encores from the 28th but in lesser quality!

Better and more complete 2nd tape (DAT master)

The better 2nd tape is a good quality audience recording with all the instrumentation clear (although bass is low and blurred) except for the encores which have some noise problems. In terms of enjoyability is significantly affected by distance problems, i.e., a lack of “in your face” immediacy.

There are very different opinions on the quality of the Bonds performances. The widely held view, perhaps influenced by the residency’s now legendary status, is that these concerts represent the peak of The Clash’s live career. But a converse view is that the Bonds shows lacked fire, with the band playing on autopilot. Certainly the repetitive demands of playing 17 shows in 17 days at the same venue must have strained the band’s ability to produce inspired performances to the limit.

Thanks to the circulation of recordings from all 17 shows we can draw our own conclusions. From the evidence of the 28th May recording The Clash delivered a strong performance on the 1st night but not an inspired one. Certainly tonight’s performance never reaches the heights of the band’s 2 previous concerts in Milano and Firenze. Even though only 5 days apart there is evidence again here of how The Clash’s music live, never stood still. There are minor changes here to a number of songs. Most bands would have been content to churn out the same music night after night but The Clash in order to maintain their own interest (and thus the listeners) could not allow their performances to stagnate. The Bonds residency though would push that capacity to its limits.

The second tape with the correct encores begins with a stage announcement to the impatient 3,500 plus (over) capacity audience; “We have had a slight false alarm, if you bear with us, we’ll be with you in 5 minutes, thanks for your co-operation” An edit then goes into the ending of Monkey Man on the PA and then with the Morricone intro, audience expectations audibly rise and there is a roar as the band come onstage. A “Good Evening” from Joe and the opening chords of London Calling begins The Clash’s now legendary residency at Bonds Casino.

Thankfully Mick’s guitar is prominent and clear in the sound mix unlike on a number of the European tour dates, and his solo tonight cuts through powerfully. Safe European Home is extended with Joe adlibbing and Mick adding some great guitar fills over the ending of a fine performance. There are problems with the stage monitors; “OK we can’t hear the band” says Joe but Mick adds “but we’re here!” Joe adlibs over the ending of White Man in Hammersmith Palais but the sound is not good enough to hear what he is singing. Unusually it is Mick who seems most fired up tonight, Joe is in a relaxed, jovial mood.

“All aboard” screams Mick at the start of a fine but unexceptional Train In Vain. Mid song someone in the very lively audience grabs Mick’s drinks provoking an amused Mick to break into the lyrics with “Oh shit, there goes the tray!” Lightning Strikes gets some subtle changes since Firenze and is followed by a Junco Partner.

“I’m going to hand over now,” says Joe as he swops guitar with Paul for a strong Guns of Brixton with some fine playing from Mick. A highlight of the concert is the improvised ending (led by Joe) to an excellent Radio Clash, which segues into a powerful Complete Control. There is an edit on both tapes immediately at the end of the song that restarts at the beginning of Ivan Meets GI Joe. “This is a drum beat that comes out of Yokohama” is Joe’s introduction to The Call Up, which is heavy in effects but is not as powerful as some earlier performances of this under rated song.

The Leader is followed by Charlie Don't Surf, which features adlibs from Joe and a great guitar solo by Mick. Mick is the star of Magnificent Seven screaming out “You lot” another strong but otherwise unexceptional performance.

Mick adds another variation on his intro to a fine Wrong 'Em Boyo and Bankrobber too exhibits subtle changes since the dates in Italy the week before. A powerful Somebody Got Murdered leads into the high-octane finale to the main set of Career Opportunities and Clampdown. Whilst Mick’s playing is excellent and Joe adlibs (limitations of the recording make them unclear) the performance does not approach the exceptional Clampdown’s in Milano and Firenze. On tape 1 an edit cuts off the ending of Clampdown (and then restarts with the wrong encores!)

The first encore begins with a long but unexceptional One More Time that again does not quite deliver. The energy levels though peak again through Brand New Cadillac and then straight into Janie Jones.

The second encore begins with an introduction by Joe “Next song we’re gonna try to sing is Willie William’s Armagideon Time”. Joe’s evident good humour tonight (he begins the song adlibbing about “Crunchie peanut butter”) results in his performances tonight lacking the cutting edge that a mean and angry Strummer delivers! Later in the song, Joe’s adlib inspiration dries up as he shout’s “Fuck me, fuckin’ hell”, then adds “the calculation, the computation”.

The final two songs are the most notable performances tonight and represent one of the most overtly political statements The Clash ever made on stage. Toppers drum beat intros Washington Bullets with Mick playing some gentle guitar licks with the melody. Mid song Joe shouts repeatedly “El Salvador” and then as the music continues a Member of the Democratic Revolutionary Front of El Salvador comes on stage to say “A message from Central America, we bring revolutionary greetings because The Clash is the only rock group that supports a revolution in central America [cheers from audience]. We believe that nothing will stop our revolution, not even thousands and thousands of bullets from Washington.

Thank you”. Joe can’t help but joke “Omah Sharif” as the guy leaves the stage! The band continue to play as Joe intones “I’m so B….O….R…...E…..D with the U.S.A” then the song segues into a great I'm So Bored with the USA with an extended repeated final chorus.

I've been a Clash fan for a very long time. I had tickets for all 8 of the original Bonds Performances. I was right up front opening night when the club was overpacked by double. Quite a few people passed out and had to lifted and surfed to the stage area to be removed. Bouncers were passing out jugs of water to the front.

If my memory serves me correctly, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were the very first opening act (4 or 5 per night) and they SUCKED! I told my friend who had been drinking a premixed bottle of vodka and orange jucie to chuck the bottle at the group (he did). It was then that the rappers went into a tyraid of "The Clash asked us to be here. They wanted us to perform". Though I love GF&TF5 they couldn't be any worse live. To be squeezed into a sardine can, and hear a pounding bass drum and nothing else was more than anyone should bear.

I LOVE Grandmaster Flash but they were AWFUL. As a matter of fact they were beyond awful. It wasn't racism, it was a matter of an overpacked house and a group that wasn't making music, it was barely noise. What would you call listening to a kick drum for 10 - 15 minutes?

Leaving, I literally couldn't stand up straight, there were fire marshalls at every door. SinceI had tickets for the original 8 nights bought at Bonds, my ticket was not valid the following evening. But, I saw 8 shows, and they were all fantastic. I saw them every tour since then, and they remain one of the greatest acts in R&R.

One night I was dying of thirst and Mick kept sipping from a large soda cup. So I kept looking at him and motioning for a drink (security would pass water to the crowd). Mick points to his cup and shakes his head no, but finally he gave in and it was RUM and a tiny drop of coke for flavor. I took a sip, passed it on and within a few seconds people were fighting over the cup.

Disclaimer: I was the NYC preppy punk, I was in Times Square all night queued up to buy Bonds tickets for the Clash in Spring of 1981. Yes of course I got seats, and no the riot wasn't because of the fire marshall's opposition. It was just to buy tickets.

The fire marshalls made Bonds double the number of shows because they had oversold their capacity. I saw the Ramones at CBGB in 1977 and I popped pills and acid at the Mud Club with my girlfreind Tina dressed in faux leopard skin. Except I went to college and golly gee, the teenage lobotomy did get his Ph.D. afterall.

I'm even in a punk revival band now twenty years later, and though my hair is long now, and I'm packing 185 lbs, I was only 145 painfully scrawney lbs then when I wore my hair short and spikey. Why do you care? Because the Clash discography wouldn't be the same without comments from one of those who was there when it happened.
Kevin

The Joe Strummer movie has had me searching for Clash websites. I found yours, and it's great. Thanks for making it!

I was at the Clash's appearance at Bonds International Casino ... I was about 12 feet from the stage on May 28, the opening night of the Bonds tour, with an Aiwa cassette recorder. I was trying to bootleg the show, purely for personal use (of course!).

I had purchased tickets at a vendor in Boston weeks earlier by hanging out at the shop hours before it opened, sitting in the dark hours before dawn on the sidewalk of Boylston Street. I bought two tickets.

Later, I called a guy I knew in Albany, New York (about 2 1/2 hours drive from New York City) and offered him one. And on the day of the show, I boarded a bus, and wasted time for the five or six hours it took me to get there. It was a pretty eventful weekend for me, not in the least because I had to work the Friday and Saturday after the concert in the hi-fi department of a Boston appliance and home electronics store. What's even more bizarre is that on the Friday date, the store was open until midnight -- it was a "Midnight Madness" promotion, and a 14 hour workday for me.

And since the Clash didn't come on at Bonds until shortly after Friday morning began, I rode the 4am bus back home and went straight in to work on the same day I saw them. Fortunately, the boss' office had a shower, and I kept a change of clothes at the sales counter. I was 21, and although staying out all night was atypical, it wasn't unknown for me at the time, so I stayed prepared for this kind of thing.

With reference to the other "punters view" it mostly right when he says:

"Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were the very first opening act (4 or 5 per night) and they SUCKED!".

But it wasn't GF&TF5 who sucked, and they weren't the first act on. And I hadn't been drinking vodka like your punter's friend ... though I won't say what I had been doing!

The first act was a girl group. I thought they were called "The Sirens." I didn't like them much, and I couldn't understand a word they were saying in this cavernous, acoustically awful dance hall that used to be a multi-floor department store. The girls came on at about 10pm, played for about half and hour, and left.

It was during the next half-hour that the crowd began to press in towards the stage, as your punter describes. I wasn't at center stage, but instead, I was at stage right, with an amplifier stack towering over me, and Eddie, my Albany chum beside me.

I watched as the microphones were set-up. Both my man Eddie and I thought the Clash would be on at 11.

Eddie counted the microphones. There were five. He said, "Maybe Ellen Foley is going to be with them," since she appeared on the Sandinista triple album that was just out.

At first I was disappointed when Grandmaster Flash, Mellie Mel, and the other dudes came out, because I wanted the Clash. But I got excited again when I saw it was a rap act. Rap was brand-new at the time, and I was glad to see it.

I recognized the Technics SL-1200MK2 turntables on the rear platform. I sold that turntable. It had a little light tower that rose silkily out of the resin base to shine on the stereo cartridge, which allowed cueing-up in low light conditions. We salesmen used to joke that it was the only turntable that got a hard-on from the music. (Hifi salesmen are a dirty breed.)

So the group kicked off. GF spun the disks, Mellie Mel led the rap, and it seemed to get off the ground. But something was wrong right away -- the rap didn't fit the sounds, and the sounds were boomy to begin with.

In response, Mellie Mel shouted into his microphone, "Sound man! More sound! More sound, sound man!".

The sound man ... well, presumably, he was the engineer with the mixing board. Normally, this guy sits in the middle of a concert hall, or in some location where he can hear what the audience hears. But in this venue, the sound man appeared to be in what had been the manager's office of the department store. That was a brightly-lit room high up in the wall, which allowed the boss a view of the whole sales floor. And as I remember, it was behind glass, so the sound man couldn't really hear what was happening down below.

The small stage speakers that faced the rappers weren't working. The house speakers were, but since they faced the audience and not the group, the F5 couldn't hear anything but bass booming around them. They needed the musical cues from GF's turntables, and they couldn't get them.

The sound man obeyed Mellie Mel's command. Without knowing what was really wrong, the sound man turned up the house speakers.

This did nothing good. The booming and echoing increased, but without being able to hear anything but thumping, the F5 had no way of telling what their turntable man behind them was doing. And without realizing what was wrong, Mellie Mel once again called out, "Sound man! More sound!".

The rap stopped and started several times. Each time it started, it went askew from the beat. The crowd started getting restless. And Mellie Mel called for "More sound!", again.

At one point I remember looking forward at the big woofers in the amplifier cabinet. They were pretty huge -- I'm thinking 20 inches diameter, though I might be wrong. And through the amplifiers' grilles I could see the aluminum strips on the edges of the woofer cones that attached the woofer material to their supporting surrounds. They were moving slowly in and out, which told me that there were subsonic frequencies that were being overamplified as the equipment began to feed-back.

It was shortly after that when the howling began, as these vibrations were transmitted to GF's platform and into the turntables. The SL-1200 is a very well-damped turntable, normally immune from feedback, but with very low frequency vibrations moving from the amps into the floor to the platform, the feedback was not at ordinary music frequencies. The turntables echoed the low tones, raising them harmonically, until they were higher pitched, very audible and very, very painful.

I could feel pressure from the speakers in front of me, a kind of acoustic shock wave, and as I felt them, people farther ahead of me and closer to the amps began pushing backwards. Some began falling down. The crowd behind them didn't move, and so some of us were held up by people pressed up from behind, while others fell backwards and knocked down more like dominos.

On stage, Mellie Mel was doing his level best to get the crowd behind him. At one point, he stopped the show and tried to calm everyone down. That worked until they started up again, and that awful feedback got going once more.

In desperation, Mellie Mel attempted to rally the crowd by saying, "Everybody say pahh-tee!".

The response, in perfect time, was "FUCK YOU!"

He tried again. It was perfect Bo Diddly call & response --

"Everybody say pahh-tee!" "FUCK YOU!" "PAH-TEE!" "FUCK YOU!"

Beer cups flew, and then, bottles. Some yahoo ran across on stage, only to be quickly jumped by a pack of bouncers, who flung open a door at the stage's edge that led outside to a fire escape. As I watched the stage-runner go out on the escape, I wondered if they threw him off of it.

Now Mellie Mel was pissed. He stopped the show for a final time, and began calling the audience racist. The audience responded with more projectiles and more obscenities. With mutual birds flying between audience and band, the Furious 5 left the stage.

In front of the stage there were shock waves moving through the crowd, as some people surged forward, and others tried to escape. I was soaked with sweat and unable to move either way. I wanted to safeguard my cassette recorder -- boy, did I feel stupid with that thing strapped under my clothes and the microphone run up my sleeve! And being a big fan of The Who, all I could think of was the 1979 Cincinnati show where nine fans were trampled!

So I dropped to my hands and knees, gliding down against other bodies on my own sweat, and without any inhibitions, used my head and arms to push legs out of the way until I could crawl to the back of the pack and stand up again. I was kicked, my fingers were stepped on, but I was glad to be out of there.

I moved to the back of the auditorium and bought a beer. I wandered around, looking for Eddie, who'd slipped out before I did, but I didn't find him. I stood in the rear when the Clash came on, and listened to songs I knew through the bad echoes of this lousy venue.

I didn't try to get close to the stage again. I also don't remember the playlist very well -- I remember the playlist of the show that I saw in June, 1982 in Brixton far better than that night! I recall Joe making a speech about El Salvador during Sandinista. I also remember feeling calm, safe and good, happy to be alive.

I bought another beer and sat down against a back wall next to a girl. We began chatting. She was sixteen, which didn't prevent her from drinking beer, and she was from New Jersey.

Her brother had something to do with Bond's, and he got her a ticket. I hoped that he wasn't the sound man.

She asked me where I was from. "Boston," I said. "You came all the way from Boston to see these guys?", she asked. "Yeah, they're great," I replied.

"Yeah, but I wouldn't go that far to see -them-," she said, gesturing at the stage. "But I would for Springsteen!". I found Eddie smoking a cigarette outside the club when the show let out sometime after 2am. I had to go to the 42nd Street bus terminal, he had to go back to Albany. He saw a bar called Eddie's, and he told me he had to go there, since it was named after him.

I was a little worried about walking through Times Square at this hour, that being the day when that region was the wild west of porn, drugs, hookers, and all types of people to watch out for.

Eddie set me at ease, though, when he said, "Hey, this is New York! Just walk like you own the place!". We said goodbye. He went to his bar, I went to an all night diner to buy a pastrami sandwich to eat for breakfast on the way home.

That was the last time I saw Eddie. I talked to him once a couple years later, when he was working at a bar in Alabama. I couldn't hear him over the noise of the place. I haven't heard from him since.

I made it through work the next two days on youthful energy, caffeine and donuts. When my girlfriend came over to visit on the afternoon of Sunday, May 31, her first words to me were, "You look awful!".

I'm sure I did. But what can I say? "New York! What? Don't stop! Give it all you got!". Thanks, again, for the cool website.

Towards the end of the run, there was a rumor going around that Mick Jagger was supposed to be coming to one of the shows.

One night we were called up to the "booth", which was really more of a private party room off to the left of the stage, and up a flight of stairs. The muckety-mucks were gathered. They informed us that Jagger was coming that night, and to be on our toes, keep an eye out for him, and direct him up to the booth.

Well, the show started, and the opening acts were done. I was posted as security Stage-Left. Ever since the Pit had been taken down, I had been being used at different locations depending on what was going on. Stage Left was where a lot of "guests" would channel in and out of, and this was a busy guest night. I was not in a good mood, and the Guests were all a royal pain in the ass. The opening bands had brought a bunch of people with them, and I had had enough of babysitting these leeches.

The Clash took the stage, and the crowd pushed forward so there were now "Guests" behind me trying to sneak from side-stage, to back-stage, and the constant flow of people in the audience who thought saying something cute would get them past me to the side-stage area.

I guess about 1/2 an hour into the set, some putz wearing a hat and jacket marches right up to the rope, and tries to push past. I put my hand on his chest, backed him up, and politely said that the "public was not allowed in this area". He ducked his head down and tried to push past again. I backed him up again, and said, "I am not kidding pal, this area is off limits." To my disbelief, the asshole goes for it a 3rd time...this time, I slid my hand up his chest, wrapped my fingers around his neck, and lifted him straight up off of the ground. I wasn't really chocking him, but rather using my hand against his jaw for leverage...it can be very intimidating to have someone pick you up by the neck. I am standing there, with this guy off the ground, he reaches for his hat and collar, pulls them both back to show his face, and croaks "please, you don't understand!"

I felt a little wave of nausea pass through me as it registered in my exhausted, drug addled mind that I was holding Mick Jagger off the ground by his neck. I immediately set him down, and did all of the appropriate appologizing and groveling. He was great about it...he said "No, no, don't worry about it, I know you were just doing your job...." and then he added the word "well" as he rubbed his neck. I showed him to the booth, and never heard anytghing about it from anyone, so apprently he did not tell anyone of the incident.

Hey, Love the site. I was lucky enough to see the Clash half a dozen times in 1981 and 1982--three nights at Bond's including opening night and the last matinee when we all got up on stage (my brother reminded me the other night of seeing me on stage singing "Jimmy Jazz" into Mick's mike and deciding he too had to rush the stage), Asbury Park in 1982, one of the nights with The Who @ Shea and a night in August 1982 at Red Rocks, a natural amphitheater in the Rocky Mountains outside of Bolder, Colorado.  

The Bond's shows were remarkable, but the Red Rocks show was great too. The band opened with "White Riot" Mick, Joe and Paul beginning with their backs to the audience and wheeling around at the mikes just in time to nail the opening vocals.

Also, Allen Ginsburg came out to do his "Ghetto Defendant" rap (he was chairing a symposium at the Naropa Institute in Bolder on the 25th anniversary of the publication of On the Road which I was in town to attend). Amazing all around. Thanks for compiling this. Jason Chervokas

Bob Yawger says
I was one of the first people in line for the show on May 28. The first show! We stood in line for hours and things started to get a little dicey with the police. Busting people for drinking and smoking weed.

Personally, even though I was only 16 years old, I was smart enough to realize I could not drink or hit the pipe because it was going to be a long night of fighting for my place infront of the statge and I would not be able to afford a trip to the bathroom. Once the doors opened, it was a mad rush to the front of the stage.

After many hours, the warm up bands came on and they were hounded off the stage. People were taking coins out of there pockets and throwing them at the band. It was viscous but of course, I never did throw anything.

Towards the end of the warmup bands, it started getting hot, and everybody was soaked. The Clash came on late, around midnight I beleive. And the show rocked!

I have been to well over a hundred shows in my life, I have played many sports and done some really cool things in my life, travelling the world and climbing the highest mountains. But to this day, I tell people my greates time ever was The Clash at Bonds Casino on May 28, 1981.

All my favorite songs. London Calling and Safe European Home to start things off. It was a giant wrestling match in front of the stage and I did very well. They banged out Radio Clash and the best for me was when Paul did Guns of Brixton. He was right in front of me. I could see every detail of his tatoos. Anyway, it was really hot, and a lot of people were passing out.

I was soaked through my clothes and close to passing out. On the way out the fire department were counting the number of people leaving the building. I ran across the street to the Burger King and pounded down two large root beers like they were nothing. I would see many great concerts after this one, but I never reached the level I was at at this show.

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Intro (3.37)
London Calling (3.26)
Safe European Home (3.58)
White Man (3.53)
Train In Vain (4.41)
Lightning Strikes (3.54)
Junco Partner (4.19)
Guns Of Brixton (4.02)
Radio Clash (4.51)
Complete Control (3.46)
Ivan Meets Gi Joe (3.04)
The Call Up (5.22)
The Leader (1.47)
Charlie Don't Surf (5.23)
Magnificent Seven (6.16)
Wrong Em' Boyo (3.28)
Bankrobber (4.26)
Somebody Got Murdered (4.07)
Career Opportunities (1.58)
Clampdown (5.07)
One More Time (5.12)
Brand New Cadillac (1.54)
Janie Jones (2.23)
Armagideon Time (5.19)
Washington Bullets (5.14)
I'm So Bored With The USA (3.37)

bold indicates on video

*Encores begin with One More Time

New York Times Review
Stephen Holden

History & Memories

Facebook
I saw the Clash at Bonds
Popular Facebook group that recounts memories for the Bonds residency. Well worth a read.

NY Times Bonds Opens

Inside 'The Disco' 1.. 2..

FDR leaflet handed out outside
1... 2...

Newspaper & Magazine Articles

Band Arrives a JFK
3 newspaper photos

Private Super8mm film footage of the rucus outside Bonds

30 April New York Post
On the Town
New York Calling The Clash
..tickets go on sale tomorrow...

2 May - New York Post
10,000 Clash fans queue for tickets for only US appearance
6 mounted police and 12 squad cars to control the crowd

NME - Win a week in New York with The Clash!

Early May - New York Post
Bonds Sold Out - Christgua

Poster 'Extra' Clash Sold Out

Blister Fanzine
Thanks for sending the FULL magazine
A weeks at Bonds (main piece)

NYC Advert for Magnificent 7 & Bonds dates

24 May - New York News
Passport Impasses Crimps Clash's style
5 British Groups left at Heathrow
Clint Roswell

New York Times 24 May
scan
or text

26 May - New York Daily News
Clash Promise 'Something Special'
Clint Roswell

MM review of the 28th

29 May - New York News
For Bonds Disco it was double capacity or nothing. Police and Fire Dept shut down Bonds. Vincent Lee

30 May - New York News?
city and Disco Clash, and Clash cools it
Disco forced to close - extra dates
Larry Sutton

30 May New York Post?
City calls a truce in Clash wars and the band plays on. Building Dept Inspectors have lifted a vacate order...

Music press photos 1... 2...

31 - May New York Times?
scan
or text
Stephen Holden

31 May - New York Times Gig review
The Clash rocks with raw energy
Ira Mayer

New York Times June 3, 1981
Clash Melee Points Up Danger of Overselling
by Robert Palmer

Bondage at Bonds (full text version)
Creem - Sept 81
Clash face unrully mobs - Bondage at Bonds
Michael Barnard
First page only

Under Fire in New York - NME
Clash forced to lplay 16 date season after ticket fiasco - When the Clash landed at Kenney Airport last Tuesday, it was nore than clear that America wanted the band... Mick Farren

How The Clash Fed The Wonderbread Generation, Made The Mountain Come to Mohammed - And Other Miracles
Mick Farren, NME, 20 June 1981
The winner of NME's Flatter The Clash competition checks out the ramifications when an English band's world is at Bonds. KOSMO VINYL shoots both fists heavenward, for all the world like a man who had just scored for West Ham at Wembley. "I got the news on every channel! I got the news on every channel!....

Boston Rock Summer 81 No 19
1.. 2.. 3.. 4..

Face NO 16 August 1981
1.. 2..

Unknown Clipping (The Face?)

MOJO Clash Special No79
pages 1.. 2.. 3..

Fanzine piece by: J Blocher
can some1 transcribe this it is very poor

Clash Contre Mafia - French Mag
1.. 2.. 3.. 4..
translation required

Anne Toone from The Bloods remembers opening for the Clash

The Clash on Broadway Part 1
Chris Salewicz, Mojo, August 1994

IF THERE WAS ONE PIVOTAL EVENT IN THE HISTORY OF THE Clash's assault on the USA it was the season of 17 shows they played at Bond's, a tacky former disco on Broadway and Times Square, New York, New York in May and June 1981.

The Clash on Broadway Part 2
Chris Salewicz, Mojo, August 1994

Joe Strummer talks to Chris Salewicz. When was the first time you toured America? I think it was in 1978. We went to finish off Give 'Em Enough Rope in San Francisco. So it would have been to tour that.

Best Magazine [French]
6 page review with photos form Bonds
...page1&2 ...page3&4 ... page5&6

Film footage
Re: Bonds - bazarboy75 wrote:

Here it is a post from the facebook page "I saw the Clash at Bonds"

"New to the group - just found it this morning.
My partner John Hazard and I were fortunate enough to be hired by Don Letts and The Clash to produce and shoot the documentary of Bonds and beyond that is the Clash on Broadway film featured at the end of Westway to the World. What started out as a one week shoot to get six songs live in the can became a year of our lives. The video for This Is Radio Clash was a lift from the 10 minute trailer for the unfinished film that we shot on 16mm and went all the way to a 35mm blowup to show potential distributors. Needless to say - the project was never completed as the band disassembled after Combat Rock. Clash on Broadway is the rough cut we had finished by the time to project was wrapped and went back to the UK."

I thought it was interested to share

Facebook

The same guy who posted that also wrote this in the comments (bold emphasis mine):

"We shot one complete show with multiple cameras and a 24 track mobile recorder. We also shot most of every show with one camera and in house 8 track recording. The band wore the same gear every night and Topper was such a consistent drummer - and the band well rehearsed - that we were able to build edits from different nights with no trouble at all."

"Sadly - we never shot the opening acts. We started the gig with the intention of doing a six song DVD EP - not a full scale documentary. Shooting expanded as the story expanded and the shows stretched on."

"We were not making a concert movie per se - and my part in the post production ended when the material left the US after doing the Combat Rock video which John shot in Texas."

All of this makes me wonder where all that footage is and why they haven't done a long form concert video or if they will at some point. I mean, a whole show in multi-camera, 24 track?! I can't imagine that kind of thing just inadvertently gets lost.

I'm sure there is way more about this that is known that I am not aware of. I think I've read that lots of footage has been lost but I don't know any details about that.

Concert movies have been constructed from way less (The Doors Hollywood Bowl for one, I expect there are more).

Posters, video, photos

The Clash @ Bonds NYC 1981
joe streno's blog
Photos, comments

Posters and Radio / TV Commentary

Gig poster black & white

Radio interview with Mick/Kosmo backstage after the opening night

Classic Rock Photos

Bonds Photos 1
1.. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5.. 6..

Bonds Photos 2
1.. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5.. 6.. 7..

Clash & Slits at Bonds 1981 photos


{  joe streno } seattle wa
www.go2jo.com

Radio Commentary on ticket fiasco - 20mins

NBC TV on ticket fiasco 3mins video

Bonds 25th Anniversay Page

CBS Live tapes
Quote, "Eventually, via Jeff Jones at Legacy in New York, I contacted Bruce Dickinson who'd worked at CBS in the 1970s and 80s and was a fan of the band. He knew of a company in the States who specialised in archiving live radio tapes. They had two nights of the Clash at Bonds on Broadway and two nights in Boston.


...play on music: “6 Seconds To Watch” by Ennio Morricone, from For A Few Dollars More...Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five are among the opening acts...after the first gig of the original seven-show run, the NYC fire marshall orders the club closed for safety reasons; eventually, the shows are rescheduled to accomodate all ticket-holders...

A strike in Britain had left 5 British bands in the UK and only 3 managed to make it with the Clash. Only the Slits, Funkapolitan and The Equators, who were slated for the matinee shows, made it. Left behind were the remains of Selector, The B-People , The Bell Stars, Aswad and most of all Theatre of Hate whom Mick had produced their debut album.

There were two opening acts each night: one British or Jamaican and one American. Hopefully the correct artists are listed by the correct dates. Support Acts included Grandmaster Flash and the Treacherous Three, The Sirens, The Sugerhill Gang, Funkapolitan, Lee Perry, Texan bard Joe Ely, and a forgotten horn-section-and-skinny-tie band called the Nitecaps. And, plucked fresh off the stage of CBGB's, Miller Miller Miller & Sloane and a KRAUT who had formed 3 weeks earlier with only 3 demo songs and who never played live. Plus bands that showed The Clash’s continuing identification and admiration for punk; The Dead Kennedys, Bad Brains, The Fall, The Slits, and The Bloods (not to mention The Brattles!). ESG a womans funk band from New York. The Rockets and the Equators were scheduled for the first matinee show which got cancelled.


Hello, For history's sake, it was Deadline Advertising and Design that designed the attached poster (above) for the Clash. How do I know? My name is John A. Czajkowski and I designed it with the groups manager in our studio on Madison Avenue. I wish I still had the mechanical, but I still have a few of these posters in my art archives.

I remember it being the NY Times magazine cover with Frank Sinatra in front of it. Those were exciting times.

Regards, John

May 28 Bonds Times Square, New York
Support The Sirens and Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five

Thanks to Laura for the following info on the Sirens...

From: "Laura DJ" <dejesuslauraann-at-gmail.com>
Date: 22 October 2008

i noticed you have the sirens on the tour date list from 81 as playing with treacherous three, that's not true, I was one of the Sirens, the guitarist, and we played after Grand Master Flash, and before the Clash.

It was my idea to support the Clash. My manager charlie martin who built the sound system at CB's and Bonds was getting directions from the owners/managers who were in jail (studio 54 fame) and i had read an article in the nme or soho news or one of the music papers of the day and joe strummer said in the article they like all girl bands opening up for their shows. So i ran over to charlie showed him the article and suggested he get on the phone and reach out to his contacts and get the clash. The rest is history. He did it and we opened their first show at bonds. Grand Master Flash opened for us!

May 29 Bonds Times Square, New York

May 30

Bonds Times Square, New York

Matinee show cancelled by NYC Building Dept - Riots

May 30

Bonds Times Square, New York

Evening show cancelled by NYC Building Dept

May 31 Bonds Times Square, New York
Jun 1 Bonds Times Square, New York
Jun 2 Bonds Times Square, New York
Bad Brains and the Slits opened
Jun 3 Bonds Times Square, New York
The Treacherous Three
Jun 4 Bonds Times Square, New York
The Bloods opened the show f/b The Bush Tetras.
Jun 5 Bonds Times Square, New York
Four female singers singing accapella and Lee Perry opened
Jun 6a Bonds Times Square, New York
(afternoon) I was at the June 6th matinee show in 1981 in Bond's. The Dead Kennedys did NOT perform then. It was the Hi-School band The Brattles who opened the matinee show, followed by Funkopolitin. The "We love you clash" that is heard mid-show is caused by a mic that fell into the audience. Joe just watched kind of amused while these guys in the first rows yelled into the mic. After a while, the roadies got it back and set it up again.
Jun 6e Bonds Times Square, New York
(evening) The Dead Kennedys?
Jun 8 Bonds Times Square, New York
Jun 9 Bonds Times Square, New York
The Fall were the support act. This is the pro-recorded concert.
Jun 10 Bonds Times Square, New York
Allen Ginsberg makes an appearance
Jun 11 Bonds Times Square, New York
Jun 12 Bonds Times Square, New York
Jun 13a Bonds Times Square, New York
(afternoon) Hi-School band The Brattles opened the matinee show, plus The Rock-cats? who they had a slap bass and played Stray Cats-type music.
Jun 13e Bonds Times Square, New York
(evening) The Dead Kennedys