1978-04-12 – The Tubes

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ArtZon Setlist Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, ON, Canada 1978ist: Zon
Venue: Maple Leaf Gardens Bowl, Toronto ON
Date: April 12, 1978
Tour: opening for The Tubes

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Members Of The Band
Denton Young (Vocals)zonguitarist_resized
Brian Miller (Guitars)
Jim Sampson (Bass)
Kim Hunt (Drums)
Howard Helm (Keyboards)

Comments: Exact set list unknown, although this is a pretty good guess based on their one and only album released at the time. I remember Zon as being a very good progressive rock band, Brian Miller, their guitarist an especially bright light. The highlight of their set for me was their amazing cover version of Hocus Pocus, by Dutch band Focus.

Rough Trade Setlist Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, ON, Canada 1978

Artist: Rough Trade
Venue: Maple Leaf Gardens Bowl, Toronto ON
Date: April 12, 1978
Tour: opening for The Tubes


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Members Of The Band
Carole Pope (Vocals)
Kevan Staples (Guitar and Vocals)
Sharon Smith
Jon Cessine
Bucky Berger (Backing Vocals, Drums)
Patricia Cullen
Terry Wilkins (Backing Vocals, Bass)

All Touch and No Contact

ROUGH TRADE – All Touch (live)

Comments: Set list unknown


The Tubes Setlist Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, ON, Canada 1978The Tubes
Venue: Maple Leaf Gardens Bowl, Toronto ON
Date: April 12, 1978
Tour: What Do You Want From Live

Members Of The Band
Fee Weybill (Vocals)
Bill “Sputnik” Spooner (Guitar and Vocals)
Roger Steen (Guitar and Vocals)
Vince Wellnick (Keyboards)
Prairie Prince (Drums)
Michael Cotton (Keyboards)
Rick “Gator” Anderson (Bass)
Re Styles (Vocals)

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Comments: The Tubes first came to my attention when Mike from Star Records in Oshawa pointed out a new bootleg release that had just come in. “Darted In My Own Armchair – An Evening of Unleashed smokelavieenfumier_resizedLinoleum” by a band called, you guessed it, The Tubes. Perusing the cover (nothing more than a square orange like paper insert) one title caught my eye. “Mondo Bondage / Don’t Touch Me There”. The bands name was not unfamiliar to me, being a long time reader of Circus Magazine, one of the main go to magazines for all things rock ‘n’ roll (along with Cream (Boy Howdy!) and the now venerable but then still relatively new Rolling Stone Magazine). There was an issue of Circus Magazine, can’t quite remember who was on the cover, extolling the virtues of the new blood in Rock. Included in the piece were The Sparks and, more germane to this rambling diatribe, The Tubes.  I remembered The Tubes specifically because they had some backup singers, The Tubettes, whose picture was featured in the article. The ladies were scantily clad, I was 16 years of age. Is it any wonder I remembered the band.

rogerandfee_resizedLong story short (too late) I picked up Darted, went home and listened to it. And listened to it. And, for a change of pace, listened to it. This was onejohnnybugger_resized of those moments in a young person’s education in music that people like Cameron Crowe write about and make a shit load of money from. The first song, the very first song I heard by the Tubes was part of a medley. Young & Rich. Who could have hoped to resist lyrics like Young and rich, Everything you desire, light bulbs with shades, in every rooooooomm… I mean, WTF? The rest of the album was a revelation of epic proportions. I had been a fan of bands like Queen, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Led Zeppelin; not exactly bands who wore their sense of humour on their sleeve. And that is if they even had one. A sense of humour, not a sleeve.

Here were these band of lunatics from San Francisco not only embracing their sense of yucks, but 1978-04-12 - God Bird Change_resizedbasically shoving it right down your throat. I went to Star Records the very next day and started buying every record this band had released up until this point in time. Which pretty much amounted to The Tubes, Young & Rich, Now and their most recent vinyl offering What Do You Want From Live. By the time The Tubes brought their show to the old Banana Bowl configuration at Maple Leaf Gardens I was more than primed and ready to go.mondobondage_resized

At this point it was pretty much a no brainer that I would go with Bill, my best friend at the time. This show would mark the first time I attended a concert with an honest to goodness 35mm SLR all of my own. Now I was in control of both exposure and shutter speed. Really wish someone had told me this before the show (and by someone I mean Bill). I already knew to shoot wide open from previous concert excursions but shutter speed was just complicating matters. This, then, is why most of my shots at this show are kind of soft.

The concert was an education in and of itself. I can stand (well, sit) before you, here and now and, without reservation state, I have never, and I do mean never, seen a band quite like The Tubes on this particular evening. That includes the next time I saw the band live which was the better part of 20 years down the line.

God Bird Change / What Do You Want From Life?

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 1

Sexual Perversion in Toronto sketch

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 5

Don’t Touch Me There / Mondo Bondage

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 6

Smoke (La Vie En Fumer)

The Tubes, Smoke (La Vie En Fume'r), 1977

Crime Medley

The Tubes, "Ad Hoc Rock" Tour, 1975 5

Malagueña Salerosa

The Tubes, "Ad Hoc Rock" Tour, 1975 7

I Saw Her Standing There

The Tubes I Saw Her Standing There

You’re No Fun

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 9

Stand Up and Shout

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour , 1977 10

White Punks On Dope

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 11

Tubes World Tour

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 12

The Tubes, "Now" Spring Tour, 1977 13

The Tubes, "Tubes World Tour," 1977

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2 thoughts on “1978-04-12 – The Tubes

  1. One of my fave all time concerts.I was a big fan of all 3 bands, just prior to Rough Trade going commercial (and losing my interest)
    I’ll never forget the (fake) cancellation mid concert, I got paranoid cuz I had joints hidden under my sock.

    1. I have tried for years to describe to friends what it was like to have seen The Tubes back in their heyday and always seem to come up short. Zon and Rough Trade were perfect openers for this band of San Francisco loonies. And, yeah, the (fake) bomb scare mid concert. You just couldn’t ever hope to get away with anything like that these days. Mores the pity. It was pretty damned convincing.

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