Picture this. It’s 1973. You are in the United States of America. The dysfunctional and corrupt Richard Nixon begins his second term as President. Pink Floyd release the influential “Dark Side of The Moon” LP, Paul Newman and Robert Redford star in the years biggest film, “The Sting” and an Englishmen returns for his second tour of America in less than a year.
Bowie had performed a number of shows in concert halls throughout September, November and the first few days of December in 1972. Upon his return to America in February 1973 he had become a significantly bigger stage act and was now playing to larger crowds in Arena’s and Theatre’s for a run of 16 shows (he had performed 26 concerts on his 1972 tour) that began in New York on February 14 and concluded on March 12 at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles.
Two days prior to the tour finale at the Palladium, Bowie played the vast Long Beach Arena with a capacity of 15,000. On an abnormally cold Saturday evening of March 10 1973, Bowie ventured on stage as Ziggy Stardust and thrilled punters with an adventurous 16 song set list to almost 14,000 fans and curiosity seekers. At the time Bowie was a genuine one a kind. In an age where most, if not all his contemporaries were denim clad prog rockers the American market was perhaps still not ready for something as diverse as Ziggy Stardust. It didn’t stop Bowie playing to the larger venues, thanks mainly to shrewd management and marketing.
For over 30 years there were few, if any memories published from the Long Beach Arena show. A bootleg of the show, with songs chopped about and not complete had been on the market since 1974 in the guise of “All American Bowie” and “My Radio Sweetheart”. Both were hard to find collectables and at the time of writing the show has still not appeared in the guise of a factory pressed bootleg.
A recent publication however has gone a long way to piecing together the puzzle of the show with rare and previously unseen photographs. The book, produced by fans and done so in a most stunning manner is “All American Bowie”. This full colour 40 page spectacle, painstakingly put together by Andy Barding and Martyn Hammond centres in on Bowie’s aforementioned concert at the Long Beach Arena. The delicious “All American Bowie” paints a beautiful picture of how the show came into being and follows through with reviews from the local press at the time. Some favourable and some not so.
When Bowie played Los Angeles on his previous visit in 1972, the Ziggy roadshow stopped in at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium on October 21 and 22. The first show had been recorded for FM radio broadcast and in doing so became one of the most sought after bootlegs by any artist of the 1970s and 1980s. Some four and half months later Ziggy was back for more! On this occasion there was new material to promote from his Aladdin Sane LP along with the recent success of the re-issued Space Oddity song and LP.
Bowie’s star was beginning to shine. And brightly at that!
“All American Bowie” is available for a limited time with only 1,000 copies produced. As a Bowie fan you need to have this book. As a music fan you need to have this book. Put simply, buy the book and enjoy one of the best reads of 2013 and beyond.
To get your copy please follow the link below…..
You can also follow for updates on future releases by liking the Cygnet Committee Facebook page….
DAVID BOWIE – LONG BEACH ARENA, LOS ANGELES
Saturday March 10 1973
Ode To Joy (intro)
Hang Onto Yourself
Watch That Man
The Width Of A Circle
Panic In Detroit
Waiting For The Man
The Jean Genie
To learn more of this curious concert in bootleg format you can do so here….