US Tour 1982

SIU Arena, Carbondale IL, USA - May 7, 1982

Rainbow concert was well-balanced

Rainbow, led by former Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, put on a show Friday night that had many ups and a few downs - but generally it was one of the better rock concerts the Arena has had this year.

Rainbow started the show with a recording of Judy Garland singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow". As the song played, a backdrop with hypnotic eyes painted on it was unveiled. Then the band ignited the frenzy of the crowd of about 4,000 by firing up an enlivened performance.

Sure enough, the audience's response said they knew they were not in Kansas anymore, as the line from "The Wizard of Ozz" goes. Audience members frenziedly waved arms resembling tree branches in hurricane.

Blackmore looked generally as if he were in the midst of melancholic lethargy, but did erupt into a few spurts of activity, like leaping in the air to land on his knees, furiously pluckid his guitar. He performed very well.

The Rainbow concert did not underdo the flashing ligbts, and they were not overdone either. Rather, they were balanced to accent the show, not to overpower it.

Blackmore actually has the skill to play the guitar and not make the mindless noise that most rock guitarists pawn off as solos. His version of the fourthmovement of Beethoven Ninth Symphony displayed the skill of a classical guitarist.

However, Blackmore botched a riff during his lackluster rendition of the Deep Purple hit "Smoke on the Water". Old Rainbow tunes though, like "Man on the Silver Mountain" and "Long Live Rock and Roll" were done well and fast.

Blackmore was not alone in presenting a good mood. Drummer Bobby Rondinelli performed a fine drum solo that did not become long and boring. However., keyboard player David Rosenthal's solos were a disappointment. Rosenthal pounded the keyboard with his fist and carried on in a way that came across more like a childish tantrum than serious music playing. His synthesizer playing during his tenure in the spotlight sounded like Pac-Man game.

Vocalist Joe Lynn Turner performed energetically and sounded a lot like Foreigner's Lou Gramm. But despite all his energy Turner lacked the magnetism of Blackmore, who played with an air of eerie melancholy, head hung low, his dark eyes occasionally sweeping across the stage and audience.

The opening band, Charlie Midnight, also deserves mention. Arena Director Gary Drake said the band wanted to open for the concert very badly.

Joe Walter
The Daily Egyptian - May 10, 1982

Civic Center, Lansing MI, USA - May 13, 1982

Rock-n-rollers had a fine time

True rock fans are a special breed of beings. They can stand all night on wobbly chairs in a room stuffed tighter than a band aide box filled with life rafts. Rock and rollers can cope with heat which could melt bumpers off of old Buicks. Most of all, true rockers love their music loud.

Thursday night, in the Lansing Civic Center, a sell-out crowd of such creatures were made happy. They stood on their feet as three bands performed almost four hours. Iron Maiden, 38 Special and Rainbow blew the blemishes off the faces of a mostly young audience with some speaker shakin' rock.

Richie Blackmore led Rainbow through some thunderous music that kept the crowd wet with sweat. It was warm enough inside the Civic Center to fry a sidewalk sunny-side up. Rainbow was able to keep the temperature high with high volume music.

38 Special played with so much punch, it sounded like they had two drummers. Come to think of it, there were two guys beating drum kits above the screaming guitarists. Two ladies occasionally added some vocal brawn behind the southern boys. Lead singer Donnie Van Zant shouted out the same phrase he used the last time 38 Special were in town. It still fit Thursday night when he yelled, "We've got some rock and roll maniacs in the house tonight!"

David Winkelstern
Lansing State Journal - May 14, 1982

Cobo Arena, Detroit MI, USA - May 14, 1982

This is my ticket and the Fender Stratocaster Guitar. This should be a start in your research to show it's authentic! That was a smart call for 38 Special if you guys would have let them play first that night the fans in Detroit would have killed 38 and boo them off the stage. Ritchie did Donald Barnes a big favor by saving his life that night. Everyone that night was there for one thing only and only one thing to see Rainbow.

When you said 38 Special went on last. When we were done half the audience left. That is so TRUE its part of the Story I can tell you about everything that happen to me leading up to that night of the best time of my life concert in Detroit with Rainbow if you want to hear it. It’s a little freaky in a good way and how I got that fender stratocaster!!

Phil Sith added: Mark took the guitar (after security let him out the back door) an hid it in (or under) Bill Fergusons car... then came back in to find us so we could leave... we never did see 38 Special.... also I think Mark had a cast on his arm from a broken wrist... which may of been used to fight off the others that were trying to take the guitar from him.

Ritchie Blackmore almost sacrificed a Marshall stack that night, the audience was pulling it in by the Stratocaster, someone ran out from back stage and cut the umbilical cord to the Holy Grail of Guitars and the fight was on. There had to be 30 fans on top of the new born sacrificed white fender strat. I had a right broken arm with a cast on at the time too all most got killed that night getting that guitar but I wasn't coming home with it.

Clif Cooky Crawford (Rainbow Roadie) said: This was a night where we let 38 Special go on last. When we were done half the audience left. 38 was pissed and Donald Barnes wanted to fight Ritchie back at the hotel.

Mark Mason Campbell

Richfield Coliseum, Cleveland OH, USA - May 22, 1982

Iron Maiden and Rainbow or Eddie and Ritchie in Cleveland Ohio. Iron Maiden were opening for Rainbow, at this show a man in the front row gave Ritchie his false teeth and Ritchie played slide with them.


Ross Halfin

Richfield Coliseum, Cleveland OH, USA - May 22, 1982

Rainbow's short, interrupted set was typical of the show rendered by Ritchie Blackrnore and Company in the past. Older Rainbow material was in short supply, consisting only of "Long Live Rock and Roll" and "Man On A Silver Mountain." Newer material from last year's DIFFICULT TO CURE album and the more recent STRAIGHT BETWEEN THE EYE LP was abundant the remainder of the evening.

Lead vocalist Joe Lynn Turner seemed to be straining at times, but really belted it out on the band's current single, "Stone Cold." His vocal delivery here and on "Miss Mistreated" was really precise, down to each individual note. Ritchie Blackmore, along with Roger Glover on bass, Bob Rondinelli on drums, and newest member, Dave Rosenthal on boyhood, put forth a good instrumental effort.

However, while Blackmore's guitar wizardry remains second to none, his unpredictable emotions and desire to have everything nothing less than perfect, can sometimes cause problems.

A slight hum in the monitor system resulted in Ritchie walking off the stage, while roadies frantically tried to fix the problem which caused a ten minute delay in the show.

With everything under control, Rainbow returned finally breaking into a short, but potent version of "Smoke On The Water." This was a real treat that kept the restless audience pacified.

.38 Special took the stage promptly following Iron Maiden and had the crowd's attention right from the start. "Fantasy Girl" and "Rockin' Into The Night" were the crowd favorites. A rousing version of the Creedence Clearwater Revival hit, "Fortunate Son," was a climactic ending to a fine show from .38 Special.

Judging from the crowd response, Iron Maiden had a lot of fans there that night. Bone crushing rock and roll from the band's latest LP, THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST, was featured including their current single "Run To The Hills" and "22 Acacia Avenue." Iron Maiden's music is meant to be played loud, and that's the way they played it. For those who survived the attack, just remember, there's always the next tirne.

Jack Hammer, Cleveland Scene - May 27, 1982
Photo: Linda Woods

Convention Center, Indianapolis IN, USA - May 23, 1982

The last time Rainbow played Indy, they shared the bill with .38 Special and the crowd was abysmal. The show was on graduation night, right before the 500. Just the kind of show you'd spell disaster at, as far as Ritchie was concerned.

So Ritch comes out and his amps all blow up and he has no power. While the rest of the band keeps playing, Ritchie goes behind his stack, and I thought, "Oh crap, that's it!" Out comes Ritchie, laughing his ass off, and the roadies got his new amp heads up and running in record time [in the time it took for the two solos from Death Alley Driver, about two minutes tops], with Ritchie then soloing over the top of everyone for the rest of the song.

Ritchie, being in rare form, played guitar with his rump, played slide with a girl's lighter and picked guitar with Wild Bill's teeth! I'm not making this up. Bill popped them out and Ritchie played guitar with them. Then he took a hit off of Bill's joint. Wild Bill was a fixture for years on the Indianapolis concert circuit. There just weren't many shows this cat missed. Every band that came through knew him, and he always sat down front. I mean, the crowd would part when this guy walked in.

Of any Purple-related shows, this one was the best. He even demolished a Strat.

Chris Parsons

Convention Center, Indianapolis IN, USA - May 23, 1982

Iron Maiden campaigned heavily in the Midwest in 1982 and it worked, because they developed a loyal fanbase. I never quite got the Iron Maiden scene. I think I bought only one of their albums and it just wasn't my thing at the time, which is strange because I loved Black Sabbath and Ozzy. But like them or not, you had to give a lot of credit to the band from Britain who essentially took up residency in the USA and played every single opportunity they had.

I'll never understand why 38 Special was part of this bill... another in the series of mismatched bands. Iron Maiden campaigned heavily in the Midwest and it worked, because they developed a loyal fanbase. I never quite got the Iron Maiden scene. I think I bought only one of their albums and it just wasn't my thing.

I was there to hear Ritchie Blackmore. For as much talent as was part of Rainbow, it struck me that most of their studio albums only had a few moments, but none were stellar, must-have albums. Maybe this could be attributed to the instability of the band's roster. Nevermind all that, this concert was a "best of" their stronger material and Joe Lynn Turner was an ample singer to handle anything from the Dio and Coverdale eras. At least in the United States, Rainbow probably enjoyed their greatest popularity during the Turner era.

Other Peoples Music

Convention Center, Indianapolis IN, USA - May 23, 1982

I met Ritchie Blackmore after the Indianapolis show on the 1982 tour. Sacrificed another white Strat and rammed it thru a 2x15 speaker cabinet. After that we didn't even stay for 38 Special and went to the hotel, saw Iron Maiden sitting around drinking, then met Ritchie at a bar a few floors up. He was nice, we chatted about 50s guitar players.

Tim Mendenhall

La Crosse Center, La Crosse WI, USA - June 3, 1982

La Crosse is not exactly a hotbed of heavy-metal enthusiasm. Country music fans filled the La Crosse Center to overflowing twice on Wednesday for the Kenny Rogers concert. But it was a different story Thursday night. About 2,500 people attended the Rainbow-UFO-Riot concert in the La Crosse Center.

Riot, a New York-based band, was the opening act and unless it does some tightening up, it is doomed to remain an opening act. Lead singer Rhett Forrester would do well to work on his harmonica and give his voice a rest. During the song Restless Breed, Forrester switched the use of his wind pipes from screaming to pumping some breath into a brief interlude on the harmonica. The interlude was too brief. Riot would do well to stretch Forresters harmonica bits and go easy on the screaming.

The double-billed main attractions of the evening were heavy-metal bands UFO and Rainbow. UFO followed Riot and the difference was apparent from the first chords played. UFO kept the crowd up and screaming with Too Hot to Handle and Lights Out. But Rainbow is the band that stole the show.

With the leadership of legendary guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, of Deep Purple fame, the band is deeply rooted in heavy metal. But Rainbow plays heavy metal with a twist, serving up some of its music with a classical flavor. Add to that a good light show, explosions and showers of fireworks and this is a band Which will catch your attention. It grabbed the audience with Miss Mistreated, which sounds as if it was written specifically to be sung in front of an audience.

The band is tight and cohesive and also displayed an really got going when lead singer Joe Lynn Turner began singing Stone Cold, which is currently blazing its way up the charts. As Turner sang, two eyeballs painted on a black curtain at the back of the stage spewed forth beams of red light, darting out at the audience. The band delighted the audience by playing an old Deep Purple standard for the first encore Smoke on the Water. The song was, of course, accompanied by clouds of smoke and the stage was appropriately drenched in a rainbow of colors.

Rainbow chose a rather peculiar song to open its second encore the Beatles Yesterday. Joe Lynn Turner certainly does not have the voice of either Paul McCartney or John Lennon, so he and the band would do well to forget the Beatles and stick with heavy metal. With three bands performing, and two encores by Rainbow, the concert stretched to four hours.

Geri Parlin, The La Crosse Tribune - June 4, 1982

Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena, Green Bay WI, USA - June 4, 1982

I was watching a video of Rainbow...Live Between The Eyes... I know you know it well, and I remembered that they were supposed to play Green Bay in early June of 1982. I see you have the date of 6-4-82 as the scheduled and completed date. This concert was cancelled, and did not take place.

I remember it was a 3 band bill, but could not place the 2 other bands. UFO and Riot...damn. I remember being extremely bummed about the cancellation. It may have been because of low ticket sales. The Brown County Arena (place of scheduled concert), has a capacity of 7,044. I see Richie had a bad night, the next night at Alpine Valley Music Theater which had at the time, I believe a capacity of 30,000. And he walked after 30 minutes? Hmmmmmm. Anyway, I respect what you guys have done, and know you are sticklers for the facts. So am I. Take Care and Be Well....

Mel in Green Bay

Alpine Valley Music Theatre, East Troy WI, USA - June 5, 1982

Alpine Valley is an outdoor venue, usually a good place to see a summer concert. However, evenings in June can get quite cool and the temperature probably was in the 40s [fahrenheit] that night. Poor Richie Blackmore: his fingers got cold, so he walked off stage after a half hour. He just walked off stage after a song and didn't come back. We knew the show was over when we heard his helicopter leave.

Steve Phillips

London Gardens Arena, London ON, Canada - June 7, 1982

The Scorpions came on around 9pm and did a good show, then there was a long intermission while roadies etc changed sets. I must say there were a lot of Scorpions fans there but I think Rainbow did a better job. I scuttled off to the far right aisle for an excellent view of the stage. After the Garland intro, some drums and keyboards, the lights went on and they went into Death Alley Driver.

Turner looked like your typical HM singer but Glover surprised me decked out in a white suit and hat, like a southern yankie gentleman. He looked rather silly! Blackmore [in black!] looked extremely bored during the first song, hung around the drums and didn't take his eyes off the floor, though he perked up during the next number and looked a little more with it. Behind the band was a canvas sheet with eyes painted on and lights flashing on it. In all honesty it looked pretty terrible. I can recall they also did Stone Cold - very popular here, Long Live, and I Surrender. They did nothing off the first album - a disappointment.

Janis Soper
[published in the Stargazer Magazine]

Fairgrounds, Allentown PA, USA - June 15, 1982

Scorpions win 'terrific' rating; headliner Rainbow no match

At the Allentown Fairgrounds last night, there was ample proof that subtlety doesn't count for much in the vast venues of America. In other words, heavy metal bands once again had come to town. That meant big sounds, big concession sales, a big crowd, and a joyous, festive atmosphere that tapped its energy from Woodstock-era pop culture. Much of the estimated crowd of 6,500 arrived too late to hear New York band Riot, which had the distinction of opening up this, the first large-scale outdoor concert of the year.

But as it turned out, the absentees didn't miss all that much, save for perhaps the early evening's warm, sunny weather. While Riot's recorded work reveals a possible American answer to so-called New Wave of British Heavy Metal groups like Saxon, last night's set proved otherwise. The Scorpions. on the other hand, were terrific. This West German quintet is on the brink of a commercial breakthrough — their current Mercury LP "Blackout" has just gone gold — and it's not hard to understand why after seeing last night's 13-song show.

True, the band often lapsed into the most hackneyed of poses (tossed-and-caught guitars, aerial gymnastics), and singer Klaus Meine's Tarzan-goes-to-the-opera vocalizing got on one's nerves after awhile. And the band too often readily showed their influences, as on the Led Zeppelin-style droner "Animal Magnetism" (Meine's Robert Plant-like crooning, the near-Indian strains of Rudolf Schenker's guitar work), and on a lengthy instrumental halfway through the show which resembled Black Sabbath at its worst.

But for the most part, the Scorps confidently strutted past their limitations, turning cliches like "Another Piece of Meat," "Lovedrive" and "Can't Live Without You" into pieces of amplified power. The real killer, though, was "The Zoo," one of two well-deserved encores that showcased lead guitarist Matthias Jabs' adept use of a voice box.

After the Scorpions left the stage, it became apparent that most of the crowd had come to see headline act Rainbow. Lit matches and high-pitched screams greeted guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and his ensemble while pseudo fog filled the stage and a tape of classical music blasted from a mountain of speakers. Despite the opening fanfare, Rainbow proved to be no match for the Scorpions.

Blackmore showed he could still construct a neck-breaking riff or two, just like he did while playing with Deep Purple. But when considering that other rockers like Eddie Van Hales and Rush's Alex Lifeson are redefining the guitar-hero role, Blackmore's blues-based riffing and overly long soloing sounded hopelessly old hat.

Enthused, one longhaired teen in an Iron Maiden "Killer Tour" T-shirt: "Man, these guys are great." The older, wiser guy next to him rolled his eyes and asked: "Where's Motorhead when you need 'em?" The concert was a Makoul Production.

Rich Harry
The Morning Call - June 16, 1982

Fairgrounds, Allentown PA, USA - June 15, 1982

Rainbow did a smallish (12/15 thousand) outdoor festival at the Allentown Fairgrounds on June 15th, supported by The Scorpions plus Riot.

They played well but not brilliantly, solos kept very short. Tracks were Spotlight Kid, Miss Mistreated, I Surrender, Can't Happen Here, Stone Cold, Tearin' Out My Heart, Beethoven's 9th, All Night Long, Power, Long Live and Smoke On The Water for an encore with all guitars kept intact.

Lori Galloway
[published in the Stargazer Magazine]

Madison Square Garden, New York City NY, USA - June 19, 1982

Rainbow Blows 'Em All Away

Ritchie Blackmore has been rocking for quite a long time, but to judge by the wild-eyed show he put on in the Garden, he shows no sign of whatsoever of slowing down. While many of his contemporaries are greying and sound ready for the old rockers' home, Blackmore has proven himself to be a master rock guitarist still in his musical prime.

Younger guitarists can learn a lot by watching him work, though it's often difficult to pay attention on that level because of his showmanship. He knows all the tricks - palming the guitar backwards, throwing his arm up in the air and pointing during a solo, of creating a bomb-blast effects. He was a hotshot with the tremelo bar long before people like Eddie Van Halen ever came along, and was doing that muted lead effect long before Al DiMeola.

After a searing set by the suddenly hot Scorpions, Rainbow made their entrance in a cloud of smoke, and as soon as they broke into their first number, a huge pair of spotlight eyes modeled after the eyes that appear on their current Right Between The Eyes album decended from the ceiling and lit up, shining white columns of light into the audience.

Though he has no need to trade on his past for justification, Blackmore continually played to the audience, teasing them with a number of introductions to various Deep Purple songs, such as "Lazy" and "Child in Time." The anticipation of his pulling out some oldies was further heightened by the presence of former Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover. When you really think about it though, isn't Rainbow the concept of Deep Purple carried into the eighties? Roger looked fit, much the same as he did during the Fireball and Machine Head days.

Performing much of the new album, as well as some older songs, singer Joe Lynn Turner was in great form, jumping about the stage with lots of urgency. Drummer Bobby Rondinelli also got his moment in the spotlight with an excellent drumsolo, keeping the crowd interested with lots of tricks, such as throwing sticks at the cymbals. One has to wonder, however, why the backing vocalists - especially such pretty ones - were kept hidden behind the speakers.

The finale of the show was one of those magic moments; one of those shows that all rockers dream about, with the sold-out Garden crowd screaming and roaring its approval. Equal to the task, Blackmore paid them back with the self-assurance that comes only with being an old pro. When he came back for the first encore and played "Smoke on the Water," the crowd went beserk, and actually outshouted the 52,000-watt sound system during the introduction.

The second encore was, amazingly, even better. First, Blackmore started doing some mindblowing sound effects and panning them between speakers set up way back in the rear of the arena. Then he furiously tortured his guitar ramming it into a speaker cabinet, which then exploded. He picked up the guitar and smashed it on the stage, pieces flying in all directions, until it was completely wrecked.

Then he pulled out another guitar, and slammed it down in front of his amplifiers, with feedback screaming from the speakers. He left it there, ran to the front of the stage, heaved the carcass of the mutilated guitar into the audience, and walked off. It was an awesome, manic show; a magic moment in rock & roll for those who were lucky enough to witness it.

George Gelish

Madison Square Garden, New York City NY, USA - June 19, 1982

PolyGram recording group Rainbow made its return to the Big Apple with a raucous, severe show meant only for the strong at heart and was never afraid to augment the effect of its music with violent stage effects. But, to add a dash of style to its particular alloy of heavy metal, the group often took advantage of the classical backgrounds of lead guitarist Ritchie Blackmoro and keyboardist David Rosenthal.

Prefacing the show with a prop shaped like blood-snot eyes that beamed directly into the audience, the group led off with the hard-driving "Miss Mistreated," a noisy number that kept the predominantly teenage male crowd sufficiently roused to stay on its feet throughout. Keyboardist David Rosenthal led into the equally rowdy 'Surrender' with a serene synthetic 18th-Century harpsichord solo.

He also resorted to the sounds of a church organ to prelude "Stone Cold" which, with the strong vocals of Joe Lynn Turner, brought home the pain of the song's character.

Lead guitarist Blackmore showed his chops on "Tearing Out My Heart" and towards the end of the show, did a long guitar solo taken from his days with Deep Purple. Predictably, he encored with "Smoke On The Water, the latters 1972 hit, which was accompanied by formula fog effects.

Larry Riggs
Cash Box - July 3, 1982

Civic Center, Providence RI, USA - June 25, 1982

The Civic Centre was packed. Over 10,000 screaming white middle class kids with Riot and The Scorpions to warm them up. Finally the PA was blasting out Pomp and Circumstance, then the Oz intro. The lights came on and Rainbow plowed into Spotlight Kid. Amidst dry ice is a dapper looking Glover in white. A huge pair of [bloodshot] eyeballs - no kidding! - are lowered from the lighting rig and hover above the band, gazing left and right with lights shining out through the pupils. Hmmm. Solo is different, he did the Difficult To Cure one for some reason.

Exit huge eyes thankfully, they were pretty funny really. Miss Mistreated and I Surrender next, unexceptional. Band played well and the new keyboard guy fits in well. Turner then dedicated the next song to "the British Navy" - you guessed it - Can't Happen Here; fast version slowing down into a very nice quiet bit, before becoming Tearin' Out My Heart which came together much better live with more feeling. The end was different too and Ritchie finished with a great rave-up solo. Up until then I felt he was just going through the motions.

Next; All Night Long, one I've never been fond of. The backdrop's eyes light up and Ritchie is using his old bass pedals, before they do a boring audience-participation thing in the middle followed by a brief keyboard break featuring Child In Time then into Stone Cold. Out pop those eyes again for Power which again is much improved live, with another excellent solo from Ritchie that really got the crowd going. The pace now slowed as Glover and the keyboard guy do some riffing together before keyboard solo time; actually quite imaginative and better than his predecessor.

Drums next and, tho' I hate to admit it, really better than anything I'd seen by Cozy. I think Blackmore really has got a good band now; maybe room for Turner to improve but even he wasn't too bad! The band return to start up Long Live Rock 'n' Roll which the crowd take up, as the stage goes very dark for some minutes. We wonder what's going on when it suddenly explodes with light, fireworks, sparklers etc., and the end of song. Band leaves, crowd go wild, encore!

Blackmore is in complete control, frantic soloing to Kill The King, turns around hurls his guitar into his amp and it explodes! He then plays it with his feet, tiring of that he smashes the crap out of it and climbs the speaker stack to finish it off up top. He's soon back on the stage for a burst of Stargazer and a short Smoke On The Water - very rousing I might add! End of show. Well paced throughout, not the best Ritchie I've seen but one of the best shows overall since the Rising tour.

Steve Wunrow
[published in the Stargazer Magazine]

Civic Center, Providence RI, USA - June 25, 1982

What inspired me to drive 300 miles there I dunno, but the show was better than Allentown although the crowd was young and uneducated and Ritchie must have known he didn't have to try too hard to please them. Two huge swivelling eyes with spotlights that shone out of them onto the audience came down during the opener Spotlight Kid, and there was also a backdrop of the sleeve with eyes glowing during Stone Cold. They used a fair number of fireworks up too, and Ritchie left out Beethoven. Ritchie attempted to bust his guitar but after the neck came off he couldn't dent the body.

After the show I booked into a hotel nearby which turned out to be the one the band had chosen. I saw Ritchie later in the bar looking bored. I thought he'd fallen asleep at one point until I saw he was after a bowl of peanuts which he lined up on the edge of the table and proceeded to flick at passers by!

Lori Galloway
[published in the Stargazer Magazine]

Spectrum, Philadelphia PA, USA - June 27, 1982

There was a wildly enthusiastic crowd, all familiar with Rainbow's work and it was the best show of them all. Ritchie responded by playing like a wildman - he was absolutely brilliant. They dropped I Surrender [no loss] and reinstated Beethoven. Ritchie and Bobby did a nice jam and then a surprise as they resurrected the blues bit off On Stage, only a hundred times better with lots more bluesy guitar from Ritchie. It was just one of those nights - he couldn't be stopped. Awesome.

Come encore time he burst on amidst a flurry of notes and then began Jealous Lover. They did the whole song and ripped into Smoke On The Water. After that they returned again while Ritchie sacrificed another guitar, flinging the bits at his amp which burst into flames and sticking the rest into the cabinet. He brought on a replacement and proceeded to play this with the butt end of the broken one, it was the best destruction since Purple days.

Lori Galloway
[published in the Stargazer Magazine]

Stanley Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA, USA - June 29, 1982

Rainbow's Concert Vanishes After Only 9 Numbers

Bands do change their names. For instance, the Quarrymen became the Beatles, the High Numbers became The Who, the Golliwogs became Credence Clearwater Revival and Mother McCree's Uptown Jug Champions became the Grateful Dead. Rainbow, based on last night's date in the uncomfortably muggy Stanley Theater, has a perfect substitute in the wings — "Ripoff."

Nine songs — that's right, only nine, and no "I Surrender" or "Man on the Silver Mountain," two of their better-known ones — and one crummy, two-song medley encore in just 75 minutes onstage. And what composed the medley? One verse and the final chorus of "Since You've Been Gone," one of Pittsburgh's most popular songs, and two verses and choruses of Deep Purple's classic "Smoke on the Water" (for the uninitiated, guitarist Ritchie Blackmore and bassist Roger Glover were Purple members).

That's a rotten way to treat people who paid good money to hear, presumably, one of their favorite bands and certainly their favorite songs by that band. No wonder the booing was almost as deafening as the music had been when the stage went dark after "Smoke." A few slow guitar lines were heard and then the house lights came on — the fans thought they'd be getting more, and it was tape, not Blackmore. What they'd gotten to that point was exactly what Rhett Forrester, lead singer for the opening act, Riot, called his band's music: "a heavy metal alternative."

There's no denying songs like "Spotlight Kid," MISS Mistreated," "All Night Long," "Power" and "Long Live Rock 'n' Roll" are hard and heavy, and there's also no denying Rainbow plays that style as well as anyone. Yet there were plenty of more musical touches: the slower, bluesy duet between Blackmore and singer Joe Lynn Turner on "All Night Long"; David Rosenthal's "haunted castle" organ opening to the Foreigner-sounding "Stone Cold'', several highlights on the long "Difficult to Cure."

Those included Blackmore's making his electric guitar sound like an acoustic one, stick-tossing Bobby Rondinelli's drum solo on which he used his hands in lieu of sticks at one point and Rosenthal's keyboard solo, which ended with the "Looney Tunes" opening.

Blackmore, of course, added most of the spice He plays effortlessly, standing like a statue with only fingers moving (flying, actually) and an occasional wig-wag of his head. He comes to bodily life only after or before his part is over. There was plenty to see as well: dry ice fog, flash pots, scads of colored lights, spotlights in a frame around a large gong behind Rondinelli and, to celebrate the holiday a few days early, five jets of sparklers at the edge of the stage and some firecrackers in the audience to boot).

The most striking of all was a huge pair if bloodshot eyes with green irises (the quintet's current album is called "Straight Between the Eyes") suspended on a truss and lowered over the band to beam searchlights over the crowd. This was a terrific visual effect.

Riot couldn't compete with that, such is the lot of opening acts. So this quintet had to make do with its music, and just looking at the huge banks of speakers at stage left and stage right told you what was coming. Sort of. Just like Rainbow, Riot plays it hard and loud yet offers just enough seasoning here and there to avoid the "mindless" tag.

There was the voice of Forrester, who looked like a young Robert Plant with his blond, curly, shoulder-length hair flopping and his bare chest sweat-soaked under a blue vest after only three songs. His voice has a surprising amount of quality for a heavy metal singer. There was Sandy Slavin's solo on "Loanshark" in particular. This guy's one of the best new drummers in some time. "Outlaw" had more melody, "Warrior" sported melody under the thunder and a Southern-style guitar duet between Mark Reale and Rick Ventura (so Forrester, appropriately, donned a cowboy hat, And "Loved by You," a seven-minute showpiece, featured some good harmonica licks by Forrester which turned into a "wailing" contest between him and Ventura.

All that's very much by design, they said in their dressing room. "We just write songs and play 'em loud," Forrester said 'They actually are songs." Added Reale, "It's so hard to get airplay with heavy metal, playing three chords and going crazy. When this heavy metal revival started about two years ago, a lot of bands came out playing three chords," said bassist Kip Lemming. "That's why they burned out. We think we're gonna be around for a long time." That's what the disappointed fans thought Rainbow would do, too.

Pete Bishop
The Pittsburgh Press - June 30, 1982

Capitol Center, Largo MD, USA - July 20, 1982


At 7.30 the houselights go down in Washington's giant Capital Centre auditorium to those in attendance prepare to enjoy a feast of metal mayhem. And a fine evening's entertainment it promises to be too.....

First to hit the stage are those lovable letchers The Rods, who deliver half an hour of powerhouse rock'n'roll, airing numbers from the current "Wild Dogs" LP as well as cuts from their classic debut. It's a brief set but nevertheless Feinstein and the lads give it their all and elicit well-earned response from the audience. They finish with the glorious 'Power Love' and could well have returned for an encore. However, with three bands on the bill, time is limited.

Next on are Krokus, who've been out on the road in America since March. The Swiss rockers are clearly building up a strong following in the US. The opening tune is the ballsy 'Long Stick Goes Boom' and for the next 50 minutes Krokus sustain solid impact. Vocalist Marc Storace is undeniably the star of the band - the man posesses an incredible throat. Prior to their departure, lead guitarist Fernando Von Arb mutilates his guitar with a giant axe. The kids love it but one senses that Ritchie ain't gonna be too pleased!

Finally, Rainbow hit the stage, kicking off with 'Spotlight Kid'. This is the first proper date on the second leg of their 'Straight Between The Eyes' tour and what an absolute killer it turns out to be. The man in black is in brilliant form and plays some of the best lead breaks I've yet to witness him deliver in concert. Aside from the omission of the riotous 'Death Alley Driver' and the solo in 'Stone Cold', there are no complaints. New keyboard player David Rosenthal appears to slotted into the position well enough and the band are airing one of the strongest Rainbow sets to date.

The limelight is totally stolen by Ritchie though and at the end of the show he looks all set to smash his axe. Obviously the antics of Von Arb are still in his mind and when he's just about to hurl his guitar against his amps he suddenly stops and tosses the complete instrument into the audience. It's a killer punch and one can't help but smile. Even Blackmore seems to be grinning as he takes hold of another Strat and proceeds to remove the strings one by one - he simply can't be outdone in the showmanship stakes. Definitely, a night of top-notch metallic fun and games. Give me more!

Steve Gett
Melody Maker 1982

Municipal Auditorium, Lubbock TX, USA - August 7, 1982

On the night of August 7, three bands were scheduled to appear at the Municipal Auditorium: Rainbow, Saxon and Riot. Only Rainbow and Saxon came on stage. Riot did not appear because of differences between the band and the promoter. They were scheduled to appear at 7:30 p.m., but decided to wait until 8:00 in order to get more exposure by those who got to the concert late, thus, the promoter asked them to leave.

Saxon then took the stage and "put on a pretty good show" according to Dottie Townsend, Coliseum Auditorium Manager. Rainbow then came on, a half hour late, then went off after playing only three numbers without an encore. Townsend said that the band was in bad playing form, and eventually walked off because a few "fans" were throwing cups at them. Many fans were expecting to see a supposed great show, but ended up paying $9.00 for a very short and somewhat disappointing concert.

Westerner World (Lubbock, Tex.) Vol. 49 - September 30, 1982

Busch Memorial Stadium, St. Louis MO, USA - August 14, 1982

Superjam: Spectacular Rock

Nothing helps a major event go smoothly like a perfect day. And when that event is a rock spectacular such as the Superjam at Busch Memorial Stadium on Saturday, such weather is a fortunate thing indeed. For reasons that have always escaped me, thousands of people ignore the seal in the stadium and stand packed together for eight or nine hours in front of the stage with a view most often worse than if they had been sitting. That was the case Saturday.

With the weather perfect as it was, there was far less work than there might have been for the first-aid teams or the security men. Things were relatively calm in the audience. To help keep things nice, Steve Schankman of Contemporary Productions, who has been doing stadium concerts for years now, had this one moving like clockwork. Each act was given a starting time and an allotted time on stage, and each group stayed within its schedule until the end of the evening. The star act of the show, REO Speedwagon, was 30 minutes late in starting because of what appeared to be technical difficulties on stage.

Unlike Superjams of the past, which usually provided two blockbuster acts, this year's event had only one REO. That may have kept the crowd from growing like Topsy. Not that it mattered for the tens of thousands who flooded the stadium, because they certainly were not shortchanged in the quality of the entertainment. The other acts were 707, Rainbow, .38 Special and Loverboy, all of which had a good set, and two of which .38 Special and Loverboy were terrific.

Often at daylong events like this, a lot of the audience will drift in over the course of the concert. So an opening act such as the Detroit band, 707, will be kind of a throwaway, there to get the crowd in the mood or settled down. But 707 didn't allow itself to be wasted. It gave the crowd a good 30 minutes of solid rock. It seems as if each edition of Rainbow is different. So it's difficult to keep track of the players. One thing for certain, though, is that lead guitarist Richie Blackmore has yet to achieve the same acclaim with this band as he had with Deep Purple. This is despite the fact that he has had some highly intelligent themes in his songs. The group opened with a heavy rock number that was impossible to decipher because the pounding of the two bass drums created an echo. But things quickly became better when the group moved into "Mistreated," and they stayed that way through the end of the set.

Most bands would probably lay off for a time if their lead singer had a cast on his leg. Not .38 Special. Singer Donnie Van Zant came out carrying a cane, put it away when the set started and then went hopping across the stage with the same speed and energy as when he has two good legs. This group has enjoyed tremendous success recently. Consequently, the members are. now playing with the confidence of the seasoned professionals they are. So even when they performed songs that are not as well known as "Rockin' Into the Night," "Wild-Eyed Southern Boys", and "Hold On Loosely," the audience was with them.

Where the first three bands leaned toward the rough-and-tumble approach to rock, Loverboy seemed by comparison more charismatic. What the others achieved by sheer energy, singer Mike Reno and the rest of Loverboy seemed to have as a gift. Of the songs that Loverboy did, none could be classed as mediocre, but there were three that were head and shoulders above the others. The first was "Take Me to the Top." The song began with the synthesizer creating a theme much as a bass in jazz often does, where it is repetitive but strong and attractive enough that when that sound is gone, it's missed. The two others "Turn Me Loose" and "Working for the Weekend" were far more popular with the crowd, which was natural, considering that each has a dynamite chorus.

The buildup to REO Speedwagon was structured so that by the Lime it got on stage, it seemed a natural progression. REO has Kevin Cronin on lead vocals, Gary Richrath on lead guitar, Neal Doughty on keyboards, Alan Gratzer on drums and Bruce Hall on bass When a band has been around as long as REO, it has no trouble picking material with which everyone is familiar. So the group opened with songs such as "Good Trouble," "Don't Let Him Go" and "Keep Pushin." Consequently, from the opening notes there was a sea of hands clapping in time on the field. One of the many things I have always appreciated about REO is that the group never assumed that everyone in the audience was completely familiar with the band's repertoire.

So Cronin, as he has always done, announced almost every song, and in some cases told the audience a little as to how it came to be written. REO's set was structured with the same precision as the Superjam itself. The band played several new songs such as "Girl With the Heart of Gold," "Keep the Fire Bumin'," "The Key" and "Stillness of the Night" mixed in with a lot of its older hits. The group did "Tough Guys," "Take It on the Run,' "Time for Me to Fly," "Keep on Loving You," "Flying Turkey Trot," "Ridin' the Storm Out" and "Back on the Road Again." The crowd knew the band would come back for encores, and it did, playing three. What the crowd had no way of knowing, however, was that to end the concert there would be a spectacular fireworks display. What a way to take a final bow.

Dick Richmond
St Louis Post-Dispatch - August 16, 1982

Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City MO, USA - August 15, 1982

"Summer Rock 1982" with R.E.O. Speedwagon/Ted Nugent/John Cougar/Rainbow/707 Ticket price: $17.50 Richie Blackmore's Rainbow followed with a somewhat-abbreviated set, as I recall. Rainbow was now on their third singer, with Joe Lynn Turner having replaced Graham Bonnet ("All Night Long", "Since You’ve Been Gone"), who replaced Ronnie James Dio ("Man On The Silver Mountain", "Long Live Rock ‘N’ Roll") when he replaced Ozzy in Black Sabbath. Confused yet?

Anyway, "Stone Cold" was their big hit at the time. Their set was plagued by sound problems throughout, which led Blackmore, in a fit of frustration, to inadvertently gouge a huge hole with his guitar neck in the big decorative canvas screen in front of the speaker stacks at stage left.

Brian Holland
Holland's Comet Blogspot

Hemisfair Arena Convention Center, San Antonio TX, USA - August 18, 1982

"Live Between The Eyes" recorded in San Antonio Texas in middle of 1982 American tour shows Rainbow at their peak with this lineup, in my opinion. While Joe Lynn Turner wasn't as heavy metal a singer as Ronnie James Dio he did have an incredible voice and range and was always in great vocal shape. Bobby Rondinelli on drums was a powerhouse and also played better when people were watching. David Rosenthal was again in my opinion the best keyboardist to play in Rainbow and you could tell by the interaction with Ritchie. He loved playing back & forth with David as David was pitch-perfect and could mimic anything Ritchie came up with. Roger Glover was the catylist who held it all down and was a jack of all trades and producer of the album.

Spotlight Kid opened the show with a bang and we used some pyrotechnics at the intro controlled by Raymond d'Addario. the eyes themselves were run by a tech from See Factor by the name of Sal Lupo who loved pointing them at the soundman (Gordon Patterson) and lighting tech (Tony Mazzuchi) just for laughs. those eyes were stored while traveling in two cases the size of a Volkswagen Beetle and didn't fit thru many a stage door especially in Europe. We also had two beautiful background singers in Lynn Robinson and Dee Beale who filled out the sound nicely. I was told they used to sing on the "Benny Hill" show on tv, not too sure on this but thats what i was told.

San Antonio was a great place to play and was known by the crew as the spandex capital of the world as the girls backstage were a great inspiration and came dressed to kill! Usually on shows like this where the band knew they were being filmed they would have been nervous, but everyone looks very relaxed here and the playing was very good. Before the show in the tuning room Ritchie would be loosening up by kicking soccer balls and excercizing his fingers playing his usual favorite things like the Brandenburg concerto and such. he also used to drink Johnny Walker Black and Coke to an imaginary line on the bottle where he knew he got a nice buzz going. Ritchie did suffer from stage fright in a way as he knew all eyes would be on him and this was alot of pressure for one person to handle. the new songs from Straight Between The Eyes came off beautifully especially "Tearing Out My Heart".

When it came time for "Kill The King" you can see the smash-up guitar (a strat-imitation with the maple neck) was fitted with a black Fender pickup in the treble position and i had scalloped the neck so Ritchie enjoyed playing it before he went about smashing it to pieces. I got so good at keeping them in tune like his main guitars that he could play them for quite a while before laying them to waste... as I've said before his main guitars never went out of tune on stage and he only switched from #1 to #2 for a more deeper heavier sound and this was done at the break in Beethovens Ninth as he came back out on stage for his solo.

I also used to give him more preamp during solos by turning up the input on his Aiwa tape deck and you can see him motion to me with his hands in a circular motion on "Spotlight Kid" on this tape. I could tell he was enjoying himself here and his amps sounded hot this night. Since tube amps can be affected by temp and humidity their sound could change drastically.we were trying to change his tubes once a week on whatever head he was using most often and we would experiment with them when he'd show up for a sound check. He didn't always come to soundcheck so he relied on me to make sure it was sounding good.

I usually stuck to whatever amp he was playing the night before. His amps always sounded best when they were about to blow their resistors, so i had keep my eyes on them and used to stand behind them watching their orange glow. When he played the intensity would show in the glow of these KT88's. I used to keep a record of when the tubes were changed in each of his three marshall major heads he used. The tubes were hard to come by in these days and were very expensive. This video was done by Polydor and as far as I know there were no overdubs done on it. This was a very honest example of Rainbow at their best.

Cooky Crawford (Rainbow Roadcrew)