In 1977 Blondie signed their contract with Chrysalis Records which went on to release ‘Plastic Letters’, ‘Parallel Lines’ in ’78, ‘Eat To The Beat’ in ’79, ‘AutoAmerica’ in 1980 then finally ‘The Hunter’ in ’82. An incredibly successful period for the band during an incredibly competitive time for music where the band single handidly embraced different genres like pop, punk and rap music and did it with style.
Gaining number one hits whilst on Chrysalis helped a whole raft of new wave and post punk bands get signed in their wake as major labels fell over themselves to sign the punk bands of the day.
Two years later an unknown Irish band released their first EP. ‘U2-3’ Like em or loath them U2 went on to become the biggest band in the world if you have one of those original pressings of which there were 1,000 made you should have it in a vault.
In ’83 Mick Jones was fired by The other three members of The Clash who claimed he’d drifted from what the band was all about from the start he went on to form B-A-D.
The Clash came to a rather sad ending in May 1983. The group had every reason to be on the top of the world by this point: their previous LP, Combat Rock, was an enormous hit and their singles “Rock the Casbah” and “Should I Stay or Should I Go” were all over radio and MTV. But drummer Topper Headon was kicked out of the group for drug abuse in 1982, and Mick Jones and Joe Strummer were barely speaking.
They took a six-month break after the ‘Combat Rock’ tour ended in November 1982. A $500,000 offer from Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak to headline New Wave Day of the US Festival proved impossible to turn down. Some warm-up shows for the huge festival were booked, the group went on a four-date tour of Texas and Arizona. Tory Crimes (who rejoined the band in 1982 after Headon got the boot) was once again out of the group by this point, so they took out an ad in Melody Maker and recruited 23-year-old Pete Howard.
The band eventually went on stage at US festival two hours late and played a sloppy, 80-minute set in front of a banner that read “The Clash Not for Sale.” Joe Strummer taunted the audience from the stage and afterward, the band got into a brawl with security. The group still walked away with a half-million dollars; four months later, they announced that Mick Jones was leaving the group. The chaotic US Festival was his final appearance with the band and the final two songs were “Should I Stay or Should I Go” and “Clampdown”.
Joe Strummer and bassist Paul Simonon did release ‘Cut the Crap’ in 1985 and toured as the Clash that year, but that’s like a Rolling Stones tour without Keith Richards. It doesn’t count. The real Clash bowed out at the US Festival other opinions are available.
Finally on this day In 1955 Bruce Foxton, bassist for The Jam was born. Happy Birthday Bruce.