18th August 1983 - Black Sabbath's Born Again tour opens

Sabs.jpg On 18 August 1983, the Black Sabbath ‘Born Again’ tour opened in Drammen, Norway[1].

The tour featured an over-sized Stonehenge replica. Ian Gillan discussed it with Mojo magazine

Mojo Magazine (December 1994): Ian Gillan, you briefly joined Black Sabbath in 1983, tell us about the infamous Born Again tour that provided such valuable inspiration for Spinal Tap?

Ian Gillan: We were up at a company called LSD (Light and Sound Design) in Birmingham, and the lighting engineer asked if anyone had any ideas for a stage set.

Geezer Butler suggested Stonehenge. "How do you envisage it, Geezer?" asked the engineer. "Life size, of course," replied Geezer. So they built a life-size Stonehenge.

We hired the Birmingham NEC to rehearse in and they couldn't get these bloody things in there. We opened in Montreal and Don Arden had hired Maple Leaf ice hockey stadium for a week, so they shipped the set over there and could still only get a few of those damn stones up, one each side of the stage, one behind the drums and two cross-pieces. [2].

Geezer Butler recalls it differently:

We had Sharon Osbourne’s dad, Don Arden, managing us. He came up with the idea of having the stage set be Stonehenge. He wrote the dimensions down and gave it to our tour manager. He wrote it down in metres but he meant to write it down in feet. The people who made it saw fifteen metres instead of fifteen feet. It was 45 feet high and it wouldn’t fit on any stage anywhere so we just had to leave it in the storage area. It cost a fortune to make but there was not a building on earth that you could fit it into.[3]

Footnotes

[1] Born Again Tour 1983 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

[2] Spinal Tap: The Origins of Stonehenge

[3] Wikipedia contributors, ‘Black Sabbath’, Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 7 November 2017, 15:05 UTC, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Black_Sabbath&oldid=809169005 [accessed 28 November 2017]

Image

By Andrew King (Flickr: Black Sabbath Cardiff 1981) [CC-BY-SA-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons