The Jam – Bracknell Sports Centre 7.11.1980

This is the next in the list of gigs I went to Handwritten gig list 1979 – 1983

The first tine I saw The Jam, and to be honest, from this point forward, there was no looking back for me! I saw The Jam a few times (7 I think in total).

Like every right-minded youth in the early 1980s, The Jam were my favourite band. I was too young to have been there in their early or even middle years, joining in the fun for the ’Sound Effects’ tour in November 1980. My God what a gig. I returned sweaty and elated. Jumping up and down for the whole gig, elbows in my face. using other peoples’ shoulders to propel myself upwards. My older brother Tom was having his 18th birthday party at our house that night. We came back from the gig and played records by The Jam to pogo to and tell everyone what an amazing concert we had just witnessed. If I hadn’t been hooked by gigs and music before that night, I sure was after it. I was 14 years old and my life had just been mapped out for me.

The support band, were from Brighton. The Piranhas, and had one hit – ‘Tom Hark’. I had the 7″ single and knew all the words to all three tracks. Dancing in an ‘80s style either in my room or at parties, singing along at the top of my voice.

I went to see The Jam with a boyfriend who was a couple of years older than me and could drive. We also took a friend from Scotland, Alastair Baird. I asked him just now what he remembers of the gig and his trip down south:

‘Memories include Tom and I visiting your school, drinking giant cans of Tartan Special at the party and falling in love with this gypsy like lady. The gig was brilliant, talking to the guy at the door who you said was Paul Weller’s Dad, getting right to the front and having to get the hell out before I died and freezing to death outside soaked with sweat. Oh and the Piranhas getting booed if they played anything other than ‘Tom Hark’ or whatever it was called. Your Mum introduced me to chicken liver pate, which I loved and she gave me a box of crackers and a pack of pate for the train back to Aberdeen. Happy days indeed. X’

Kind of captures a wonderful teenage energy – thanks Alastair!

I found these photos from that night online, don’t know who took them, but they’re great.

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This was a gig a few days before the Bracknell one. Yup, that’s what it was like – effing incredible!!

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