Wishbone Ash – Newcastle City Hall 21st January 1980

When I started this I dug out some tickets and when I saw this one from 1980 I assumed it would have been the second or third time I saw Wishbone Ash but checking my records I actually discovered this was the first gig of theirs I went to. I have no idea why I didn’t see them sooner and in fact it turns out that I did only see them twice, this gig and one a year later at the Mecca in Sunderland.  Blowin Free had long been a favourite on Friday nights at the Mecca so that is why I’m surprised I hadn’t seen them sooner!

The thing I remember about this show was that it was recorded for what would become the Live Dates 2 album but sadly none of the show made it onto the released album. One consolation is that Blowin Free from this night was released as a double A side 12″ single along with another track – Helpless. Needless to say I have a copy and it made us very very happy at the time! The track was later added to the Just Testing album which was what this tour was supporting. It also appears on the Japanese only release Hot Ash.

Support act was The Dukes – who had featured Jimmy McCulloch but he had sadly died from an overdose before this tour and I think the band called it a day soon afterwards

Setlist was probably something like this one from the Hammersmith Odeon on the same tour

Doctor
Blind Eye
The Way of the World
Living Proof
The King Will Come
Lifeline
Insomnia
Phoenix
Blowin’ Free
Helpless
Queen of Torture
Jail Bait

Bad Weather Blues
Too Much Monkey Business