Alive As Yesterday: 1985 Concerts


"Live Aid was a benefit concert held on Saturday 13 July 1985, as well as a music-based fundraising initiative. The original event was organized by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure to raise further funds for relief of the 1983–1985 famine in Ethiopia...Billed as the global jukebox, Live Aid was held simultaneously at Wembley Stadium in London, UK, attended by about 72,000 people and John F. Kennedy Stadium in Philadelphia, US, attended by 89,484 people.

The idea to stage a charity concert to raise more funds for Ethiopia originally came from Boy George, the lead singer of Culture Club. George and Culture Club drummer Jon Moss had taken part in the recording of Do They Know It's Christmas? and in the same month, the band were undertaking a tour of the UK, which culminated in six nights at Wembley Arena. On the final night at Wembley, 22 December 1984, an impromptu gathering of some of the other artists from Band Aid joined Culture Club on stage at the end of the concert for an encore of Do They Know It's Christmas?. George was so overcome by the occasion he told Geldof that they should consider organizing a benefit concert. Speaking to the UK music magazine Melody Maker at the beginning of January 1985, Geldof revealed his enthusiasm for George's idea.

It was clear from the interview that Geldof had already had the idea to hold a dual venue concert and how the concerts should be structured: 'The show should be as big as is humanly possible. There's no point just 5,000 fans turning up at Wembley; we need to have Wembley linked with Madison Square Garden, and the whole show to be televised worldwide. It would be great for Duran to play three or four numbers at Wembley, and then flick to Madison Square where Springsteen would be playing. While he's on, the Wembley stage could be made ready for the next British act like the Thompsons or whoever. In that way, lots of acts could be featured and the television rights, tickets and so on could raise a phenomenal amount of money. It's not an impossible idea, and certainly one worth exploiting." (The Guardian)



10,000 Maniacs'

Orpheum Theatre

Memphis, TN


Autumn Tour 1985

Siouxsie & The Banshees


Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band

Orange Bowl Stadium

Miami, FL

The Born in the U.S.A. Tour was the supporting concert tour of Bruce Springsteen's Born in the U.S.A. album. It was his longest and most successful tour to date. It featured a physically transformed Springsteen; after two years of bodybuilding, the singer had bulked up considerably. The tour was the first since the 1974 portions of the Born to Run tours without guitarist Steven Van Zandt, who decided to go solo after recording the album with the group. Van Zandt, who was replaced by Nils Lofgren, would appear a few times throughout the tour and in some of the music videos to promote the album. It was also the first tour to feature Springsteen's future wife, Patti Scialfa. 

The tour started in June 1984 and went through the United States and to Canada. In March 1985 the tour went to Australia, Japan and Europe. It then headed back for a second leg of the U.S. tour in which Springsteen and the E Street Band played to sold-out professional football stadiums. The tour finished in October 1985 in Los Angeles. 

The tour grossed $80–90 million overall.[1] Of that, $34 million came from Springsteen's summer 1985 stadium dates in North America.[1] The Born in the U.S.A. album was inside the top 10 of the Billboard 200 during the entire tour. Springsteen also was enjoying a hit single from the album (there were seven in total) during any moment of the tour. The album along with Springsteen's previous album, Nebraska, which he did not tour to promote, were performed in their entirety throughout the tour. Total attendance was 3.9 million.



Grateful Dead

Nassau Coliseum

Uniondale, NY


March 27 SET LIST

Mississippi Half-Step 
Hell in a Bucket 
West L.A. Fadeaway 
Mama Tried 
Big River 
Tom Thumb's Blues 
Brown Eyed Women 
Tons of Steel 
Might As Well 

Shakedown Street 
Uncle John's Band 
Playin' in the Band 
Stella Blue 
Turn on Your Love Light 

Touch of Grey





The Dynamic James Brown & His Revue

The Commodore Ballroom

Vancouver B.C. Canada


Rock & Roll All Star Jam

Chuck Berry & Bo Diddley

Irvine Meadows Ampitheatre

Irvine, CA




Illinois Memorial Stadium

Champaign, IL

Farm Aid started as an idea at the Live Aid Concert when Bob Dylan said on stage, “Wouldn’t it be great if we did something for our own farmers right here in America?” Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp agreed that family farmers were in dire need of assistance and decided to plan a concert for America. The show was put together in six weeks and was held on September 22, 1985 in Champaign, Illinois before a crowd of 80,000 people. It raised over $7 million for America’s family farmers. Performers included Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, Bonnie Raitt, B.B. King, Loretta Lynn, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty and many more.


Like A Virgin Tour


Beastie Boys


Los Angeles Universal Ampitheatre

Los Angeles, CA

The Beastie Boys & Madonna: One of the most bizarre Tour pairings!

Back in the spring of 1984, the Beastie Boys’ first manager, Russell Rush Simmons got a call from Madonna’s manager who asked if the Beastie Boys would be interested in opening for Madonna on her Like A Virgin tour. This was not necessarily a wise move because at the time Madonna’s audience was filled with young girls and their moms and dads. The whole tour was crazy, because Madonna went from playing CBGB and the Mudd Club to playing sporting arenas. She wasn’t a superstar that everyone now knows, it was the first time she was playing in huge arenas.  The relationship between the Beastie Boys and the audience was synergistic, one feeding off the other. It was like a love-hate relationship type of thing. The Beasties hated the crowd, the crowd hated them. 

On April 10 1985, Madonna’s Virgin Tour started at the Paramount Theatre in Seattle, the Beastie Boys were the opening act. Madonna had three shows in Seattle – April 10, 12 and 13 – and all three were sellouts by the time she took the stage that first night. The Beastie Boys opened for Madonna and they weren’t well received by the pro-Madonna crowd. 'The girls had flap skirts on and the tights cut off below their knees and lace gloves and rosaries and bows in their hair and big hoop earrings.'

After Seattle, all of the shows were moved to arenas. 'Their 30-minute set got off to a bad start when one of the Beasties declared himself King of the Paramount, and generally made the pro-Madonna audience feel like a swarm of hillbillies.'

After the first few dates, Madonna’s management was ready to pull the plug on them, but Madonna stood up for them and kept them on the tour.

 One particular show at Madison Square Garden was particularly memorable because more than 15 000 people were there and the crowd booed and jeered the Beastie Boys for their entire set.




Grateful Dead

Boreal Ridge

Donner Summit

Soda Springs California


Willie's Picnic

Highway Men Live!

Willie Nelson

Waylon Jennings

Kris Kristoferson

Johnny Cash

Austin, TX


The Unforgettable Fire Tour

Croke Park

Dublin, Ireland

The Unforgettable Fire Tour was a concert tour by Irish rock band U2 that took place in 1984 and 1985 in support of band's album The Unforgettable Fire. Beginning in August 1984 with the band's first tour to Australia and New Zealand, the tour spanned four further legs which included 43 concerts in Europe and 50 in North America. 

Initially challenged by the sonic complexity of the new album's material, the band were able to translate the complex layered atmospheric textures of the new studio-recorded tracks to live performance through the use of programmed sequencers, which the band until then had been reluctant to use. Since then sequencers are now used on the majority of U2 songs in performance. Songs criticised as being "unfinished", "fuzzy" and "unfocused" on the album, including the live favourite, "Bad", made more sense on stage. 

For the first time, U2 consistently played in arenas instead of smaller halls and theatres, and sometimes for multiple nights. The group had reached the level of popularity where this was possible, but had not yet broken out into widespread fame and familiarity among the general rock and pop audience; that would come in 1987 with the release of The Joshua Tree. The band's now renowned performance at Live Aid in July 1985, was watched by millions on television and brought them to a new level of fame and exposure.


Motley Crue


St. Paul Civic Center

St. Paul, MN



U.C. Davis Coffee House

Sacramento, CA



Aragon Ballroom

Chicago, IL


The Head Tour 1985

The Cure

Cleveland Music Hall

Cleveland, OH


The Baby Screams 
Play for Today 
Kyoto Song 
The Hanging Garden 
A Night Like This 
In Between Days 
Let's Go to Bed 
The Walk 
One Hundred Years 
A Forest 
Six Different Ways 
Close to Me 
Charlotte Sometimes 
Three Imaginary Boys 
Boys Don't Cry 
10:15 Saturday Night 
Killing an Arab 
Do You Wanna Touch Me (Oh Yeah)



Perfect Strangers Tour '85

Deep Purple



The Alarm

Madison Square Garden




Queens Students Union

Belfast, Ireland


Teenage Lobotomy

Psycho Therapy

Blitzkrieg Bop

Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio?

Danger Zone

Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment

Rock 'n' Roll High School

I Wanna Be Sedated

Beat on the Brat

The KKK Took My Baby Away



Suzy Is a Headbanger

Let's Dance

I Don't Care

Chinese Rocks

Rockaway Beach

Surfin' Bird

Cretin Hop

California Sun

Today Your Love, Tomorrow the World



UK Jobs For Youth Tour '85

Billy Bragg



MT Smart Stadium

Auckland, New Zealand


Prince & The Revolution

Sheila E.

Louisiana Superdome

New Orleans, LA


Let's Go Crazy 



Little Red Corvette 

Take Me With U 


How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore 

Let's Pretend We're Married 

International Lover 


Computer Blue 

Darling Nikki 

The Beautiful Ones 

When Doves Cry 


I Would Die 4 U 

Baby I'm a Star



George Thorogood & The Delaware Destroyers

Cain's Ballroom

Tulsa, OK


UK & Ireland TOUR

The Pogues


New Year's Eve Party 1985

Stevie Ray Vaughn & Double Trouble

Joe King Carrasco

The Fabulous Thunderbirds

San Antonio Convention Center Arena

San Antonio, TX






Tom Waits

Dominion Theatre

London UK

"Tom Waits has a voice that could guide ships through dense fog. He sings songs that are poetic, hilarious, scary, touching, hallucinatory, and fine. Maybe he’s like John Lee Hooker, Mose Allison, Neville Brand, Francois Villon, Soren Kierkegaard, Lenny Bruce, and Wallace Beery rolled into one. Sometimes his band sounds like a Salvation Army combo covering a Stones tune. But nothing really sounds like Waits. Or writes like. Or looks like. Or talks like." (Spin Magazinem, 1985)



16 Shells From a Thirty-Ought-Six 


Heart Attack and Vine 

Shore Leave 

Tango Till They're Sore 

I Beg Your Pardon 

Broken Bicycles 

On the Nickel 

In the Neighborhood 

Cemetery Polka 

Falling Down 

'Til the Money Runs Out 

9th & Hennepin 

Step Right Up 

Down, Down, Down



Walking Spanish 

Red Shoes by the Drugstore 


Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis 

Tom Traubert's Blues (Four Sheets to the Wind in Copenhagen)



NEW RELEASE! It was a drizzly foggy night on Thanksgiving NEW RELEASE! It was a drizzly foggy night on Thanksgiving Eve 1979. The aura of tryptophan mixed with beer, cheap booze and hormones filled the Silver Dollar Saloon as the Freelance Vandals took the stage. WBAB, a popular radio station, was on hand to capture the band's first radio show. Rock & Roll sounds...down to the bone baby!Eve 1979. The aura of tryptophan mixed with beer, cheap booze and hormones filled the Silver Dollar Saloon as the Freelance Vandals took the stage. WBAB, a popular radio station, was on hand to capture the band's first radio show. Rock & Roll sounds...down to the bone baby!

Recorded live @ The Right Track Inn (Freeport, NY) on Easter Sunday 1981. Featuring Billy "the Mountain" Cairns (Drums / Vocals), Mike Adams (Bass / Vocals), Chuck Ciany (Vocals / Sax / Guitar), Jack Finch (Keyboards), "Diamond" Ray Finch (Vocals / Lead Guitar) and Johnny Pierre (Vocals / Rhythm & Slide Guitar). Rock & Roll is a State of Mind!

Recorded Live 1983 @ The Right Track Inn (Freeport, NY) >Billy Cairns - Drums Vocals >Mike Adams - Bass / Vocals >Tommy Yamasaki - Tenor & Soprano Sax / Percussion >Diamond" Ray Finch - Lead Guitar / Vocals >Johnny Pierre - Lead Vocals / Guitar >Chuck Ciany - Guitar / Vocals / Percussion / Sax >Al Speed - Keyboards / Vocals Jack Finch - Keyboards

It's 1978 and The Freelance Vandals are getting wild and crazy @ The Music Box in Bellmore, NY on New Year's Eve!

This live set captures the Freelance Vandals in action @ The Pastime Pub in Amityville circa 1980! Special Thanks To John C. Englehardt for his artwork and The Michael Tully Archive for providing a cassette of this show.

This was the first official album that was released by the Freelance Vandals in 1979. Many of the songs have become popular items to all of the Freelance Vandals fans around the world!


Return To All Blog Posts