The Clash – News Report about Bond’s Casino Shows – June 1981.
The Clash played a series of 17 concerts at Bond International Casino in New York City in May and June 1981 in support of their album Sandinista!. Due to their wide publicity, the concerts became an important moment in the history of the band.
The site of the concerts was formerly Bonds department store which had been converted into a large second-floor hall. Promoters kept the name because there was a large Bonds sign on the outside of the building. As The Clash had not yet broken out into mass popularity, eight shows were originally scheduled: 28, 29, 30, 31 May and 1, 2, 3 and 5 June 1981. However, given the venue’s legal capacity limit of 1750, the series was blatantly oversold (3500) right from the first night, leading the New York City Fire Department to cancel the Saturday, 30 May performance. In response, the band condemned the brazen greed of the promoters while demonstrating unprecedented integrity to each and every ticketholder by doubling the original booking with a total of 17 dates extending through June.
The concert captures The Clash on the cusp between being a cult band and their short-lived major market penetration. As always with The Clash, ticket and merchandise prices were set relatively low.
The band had a new opening act every night, including The Fall (band), Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Dead Kennedys, Bad Brains, Lee “Scratch” Perry and many more.