Blue Oyster Cult’s Eric Bloom Responds to Tony Iommi’s Comments About Joint 1980 Tour
Pop quiz: What do you get when you create a co-headlining tour between Black Sabbath and Blue Oyster Cult? Answer: A mini disaster, at least if you’re referring to the ‘Black and Blue’ tour of 1980, masterminded by the bands’ then-manager Sandy Pearlman.
Black Sabbath’s Tony Iommi spends just a few paragraphs of his new book ‘Iron Man’ – which we recently reviewed — talking about his frustration at his band’s U.S. tour with Blue Oyster Cult, but his annoyance is palpable.
“We hadn’t been on a co-headliner before, because we’d always had bands supporting us. I suppose Sandy wanted to make them big by putting them in that position,” writes Iommi of the tour during which Ronnie James Dio fronted the band. “It was a disaster…”
Iommi writes about the problems ranging from BOC’s fiberglass Godzilla on stage that took “forever to break down” to his annoyance at the seeming randomness of how the bands would trade opening shows.
“There is a lick of truth to that,” Blue Oyster Cult’s Eric Bloom explains after he being read sections of the account. “The politics [of who would close] was explained to me by Sandy as the promoters’ choice based on [which band] was bigger in which city. Now whether I was told the truth or not, I don’t know. Every night I would ask him who was closing the next night.”
Still Bloom says he and his band mates didn’t feel any animosity toward Black Sabbath despite some less-than-ideal touring conditions.
“I knew Ronnie for many, many years. We met in the 1960s when I had a college bar band and he was a pro,” Bloom says before noting his sadness over the singer’s recent death. “I always looked up to Ronnie and Black Sabbath. They were very influential to us.”
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