Black Sabbath Newcastle City Hall May 1980

Black Sabbath Newcastle City Hall Heaven and Hell tour 1980
And so it came to pass that the unthinkable happened and Ozzy left his Black Sabbath mates, to be replaced by one Ronnie James Dio. This seemed a strange pairing at first, but one which became more believable as time went on. Ronnie was of course known to me. I had seen him in Elf, when they supported Deep Purple on the Burn tour and Johnny Winter (thanks to John for reminding me of this), and a numbers of times in Richie Blackmore’s Rainbow. The change in line up didn’t seem to affect. Sabbath’s popularity. Indeed they were a popular as ever, with the tour selling out and featuring multiple nights at several venues, including Newcastle. So I went along with a group of mates to see this new Sabbath. Often when a band changes line up in this way, they come back stronger than ever. There are several reasons for this in my view. They have something to prove, the new member brings new energy, and the need for rehearsals also strengthens the band. I had seen this before. Deep Purple came back stronger than ever with David Coverdale on the Burn tour, and Genesis did the same, but in a different way, on the Trick of the Tale tour. And so it was with Sabbath. The Newcastle show was just great. We were right down the front, in the middle in front of the band, and Ronnie fitted in very well, much much better that I guessed. His small elf like frame added a new dimension t the stage show, and his devil horns two finger salute, was annoying, but it worked! I even did it back to him! The set was a mixture of tracks from the new Heaven and Hell album and old Sabbath classics. So far so good, we still had Sabbath to go and see, and also the promise of Ozzy and Blizzard of Oz shows (which were also great). Typical set list from the 1980 tour: War Pigs; Neon Knights; N.I.B.; Lonely Is The Word; Sweet Leaf ; Children Of The Sea; Black Sabbath; Heaven And Hell; Iron Man; Sabbath Bloody Sabbath; Orchid; Die Young; Paranoid; Children Of The Grave; Lonely Is The Word

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by paul white on September 12, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    Hate to disagree, but I remember when Bill Ward started his drum solo, we all buggered off to the bar and never came back. Got talking to the excellent support band, Shakin Street featuring the truly gorgeous Fabienne Shine. We ended up in the haymarket chippy with ex Dictator, Ross The Boss Funicello who was their guitarist. Dont get me wrong, I loved the album, just didnt like the change livewise.


  2. Posted by J Smith on April 6, 2014 at 5:45 am

    Anyone that knows of early H&H Tour footage, from April 1980 to August,1980 when Bill Ward is still in band, still on the kit, please let me know.

    There is an audio, “bootleg”, The Dance With The Devil, Seattle show, BW is on his game ! He rips through Die Young, like an A10 delivering the ordinance, he was on fire, really sounds good !

    I’ve not seen any footage of BW in 1980 before he left the tour in August that year.

    He played about 70/75 shows of the 1980 H&H tour, from April to August, some of them big venues,(ie), Day On The Green, and I am just astonished that not ONE person or production company filmed or video tapped this show or any of the other venues.

    With the exception of the overdub, History of Black Sabbath, (Die Young/Neon Knights), I’ve not seen one piece of footage, of a REAL concert in the H&H 1980 tour with Bill Ward, not one.

    Any info, much appreciated


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