Bonds Residency
Three weeks & 17 gigs that shook up New York and America.

last updated 20 May 2006
updated 22 May 2015 - added great soundboard audio

cdr - clear - better - aud. master - Sound 4 - time 92.35min - d-mast - tracks 24

cdr - Soundboard - Sound 5 - time 97min - tracks 24

FHTE II – Bankrobber only – CBS/Epic Mobile – Pro Recording – Sound 5

Having enjoyed their only day’s break at Bonds from performing the day before, the show on the 8th might have been expected to have been one of the best. In fact the band sound at times tired and uninspired; perhaps they over indulged in their R & R as Mick especially sounds somewhat out of it at times! Joe unusually is not so fired up and at times Mick sounds stoned, getting lyrics mixed up and playing out of sync with the band.

It does though make for some fascinating performances for example Magnificent Seven gets an 8 plus minute meandering treatment with Mick and Joe both adlibbing at length! The concert in contrast is one of their shortest at Bonds; with only one encore, which ends with the band charging through a great, I’m So Bored With The USA.

We now know that CBS/Epic recorded two Bonds shows. One was the 9th June (3 tracks appear on FHTE and 1 on Clash On Broadway). Thanks to the circulation of audience recordings from all 17 Bonds shows and the performance of Bankrobber on FHTE II (the tracks short listed for FHTE but not used) we now know that the 8th June concert was also recorded. All the songs from the 8th were passed over for FHTE and you would have to agree with Mick and the compilers of FHTE that the 9th June performances are better, although the Bankrobber performance on the 8th is very good. Its possible of course that the band acknowledged that their performance tonight was below par and asked for the 9th June show to be recorded too, anyone know? We can only hope that all the official live recordings from The Clash circulate one day.

From audience DAT master.

From the audience DAT master from the guy who recorded almost all the Bonds shows! The sound quality is therefore very similar to the others although it is perhaps a little less distant; there is a lot more chat near taper this time so perhaps the taper was nearer the stage. The sound then is of a very decent audience recording let down somewhat by the usual distance and flatness that characterise this taper’s Bonds recordings.

Recent Soundboard

A soundboard tape has surfaced (May 2015) with great sound quality and slightly longer. On par with the 9th sounboard.

The recording starts with a guy near the taper shouting, “Get that car outta that gear yeah” just before London Calling. Thanks to repeated airplay on New York radio Magnificent Seven was no doubt better known in New York than London!

Like most shows the band warm up on London Calling but its on Safe European Home that the gig takes off; Joe and Mick shouting out the words and Mick plays some great guitar over the ending. After The Leader, Joe asks the very lively and appreciative audience, “Have you people got enough room? You must feel like a sardine, this man here”. The set list is again unaltered with Train in Vain followed by White Man in Hammersmith Palais with Joe adlibbing over the extended ending.

Joe’s guitar is very clear on a fine Radio Clash, the vocals just too distant otherwise there is plenty of clarity; an enjoyable sound. Joe’s introduction to Corner Soul is surely a reference to the spliff bunker where Joe wrote the song’s lyrics; “Here we have a roach song written in the roach motel”. Not content to churn out the same performances every night The Clash are again improvising on many of the songs tonight, even on Guns of Brixton with Mick in particular coming up with a new approach to his guitar contribution.

Photo courtesy of Alyn Currie @

Topper’s drums are very clear on The Call Up; it’s a ‘straight’ run through not as inspired as the previous night’s performance. Bankrobber is fine if unexceptional. There is an edit just before Lightning Strikes, which is now shorter and Mick’s solo does not complement the song; his contribution tonight is increasingly ‘out of it’.

“Play the guitar Senor” and Mick obliges hanging out the opening notes impressively to Complete Control then Topper comes in picking up the pace then Mick’s guitar slams in into surely one of The Clash’s top three best songs. The band sound inspired again, Mick’s solo is biting and Topper drives it along, then suddenly an edit loses the ending.

The second cdr begins with Ivan Meets GI Joe, the usual low point of the shows. Illustrating Mick’s contribution tonight he is brilliant at the start of Charlie Don’t Surf but by the end of the song his playing is increasingly out of sync with his band mates and the song! Mick is very agitated about something during the song presumably having a go at someone in the audience.

Joe acknowledges that tonight’s show is not yet firing he says “Alright then that’s just the overture” and the band kick into Magnificent Seven. It’s a long 8 and a half-minute version, which meanders at times but is nevertheless fascinating as the band improvise both musically and lyrically. Mick and Joe adlib at length somewhat bizarrely with Joe for example coming out with “in Italian arriverderci or gimme some of that fettuccine” and “call me Philippe, anything it’s gonna fuck me sideways, not me copper..this is Mighty Mouse…is Diana Ross in the house? We have free vodka martinis, yes, Frank Sinatra did not turn up” Ironically its Topper who holds it altogether as Joe and Mick sound increasingly stoned!

On Broadway Mick plays some nice guitar but the band are not quite gelling together tonight. The sound quality improves half a notch halfway through. Mick sounds like he has been listening to some Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock as his one off intro to Somebody Got Murdered has a long feedback Star Spangled Banner type intro which he hangs out before Joe’s rhythm cutter guitar comes in. Mick sounds stoned getting the lyrics mixed up and again its Topper’s excellent drumming that keeps it all together. Police and Thieves gets a fine ‘straight’ run through and again its not clear whether Mick’s playing is inspired or out of it!

Clampdown ends the main set in rousing style. Mick adding to the “take the best years of your life” line “they will if you let them”. Joe adlibs over the final section as Mick repeats, “I won’t work, I don’t wanna work”

The recording fades out then into the only encore, which begins with the first performance of Pressure Drop since the Mont De Marsan Festival in August 1977! Psychedelic Mick plays the intro then Topper picks it up then Mick plays the melody. Mick and Joe are really into it and it’s a fascinating to hear the song played 81 style. Then its back to the usual encore opener, One More Time with Mick again agitated about something at the start. The performance rather loses its way amongst Mick’s effects and Joe sounds tired and uninspired but still trying to push himself. The band though do pick it up through the charge through the final three songs, Brand New Cadillac, Career Opportunities and a particularly strong I'm so Bored with the USA.

Its possible the taper did not capture a second encore but only one was played at the Saturday matinee and on the 9th so the recording is very probably complete. This is one of the weaker Bonds gigs but fascinating and enjoyable nevertheless.

I am a long time fan of the clash - wanted to see the clash log before my first show in 81 - but could never get there or if i got there I could not get into the show.. And it seemed to be bad fate when i went to first see the clash at the BONDS, NY,NY and the show I had tickets to was called off by the fire marshals and we were told to come back a week later.. No ,money and no ride (I live in Boston) I had to hitch a ride on the side of the road... I DID make it and it was the best clash show I ever saw... 7X total after that ..


London Calling
Safe European Home
The Leader
Trian in Vain
White Man in Ham Palais
Radio Clash
Corner Soul
Guns of Brixton
The Call Up
Lightning Strikes
Complete Control
Ivan Meets GI joe
Charlie Dont Surf
Magnificent 7
Somebody Got Murdered
Police and Thieves
Presure Drop
One More Time
Brand New Cadilac
Career Opportunities
I'm so Bored with the USA

History & Memories

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 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
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?
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


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

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. 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" <>
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