Rhino Historic Tours: The Greatest Punk Shows That Never Happened

Thursday, November 13, 2014
Rhino Historic Tours: The Greatest Punk Shows That Never Happened

38 years ago today, a UK tour was announced which might well have been viewed as the greatest lineup of punk artists to ever travel together in the ‘70s if it had ever come to fruition. But it didn’t.

On November 13, 1976, the UK music publication known as Melody Maker broke the news that November 29th had been set as the kickoff for a 14-date tour featuring co-headliners the Sex Pistols and the Ramones. The initial performance was set to take place at Newcastle City Hall, and in addition to the aforementioned bands, the other artists on the bill were reported to be Talking Heads, the Vibrators, and Chris Spedding.

There was only one tiny problem that kept the tour from taking place: the whole thing was apparently a fabrication.

One wonders if the whole thing sprang forth from some happy-go-lucky attendee of the Ramones’ UK show at the Roundhouse, where members of the Pistols, the Clash, the Damned, and even the Pretenders came to bask in the awesomeness of the bruddahs as they rocked the roof off the joint. You can only imagine how great a co-headlining Ramones / Pistols tour would’ve been – okay, maybe not great, but certainly unforgettable – but given that the Ramones’ art director / lighting technician, Arturo Vega, has said in the past that Johnny Rotten was terrified that Johnny Ramone was going to beat him up, it’s hard to imagine any such tour ending in anything other than chaos.

Then again, that’s kind of what you’d want from such a tour. Man, now we’re bummed all over again...