The second date of David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust Tour took place on 10 February 1972.
Ha ha haaa! Oh, that’s perfect. Ziggy at the Toby. It was probably a pub. Things moved quite fast in those days, but Ziggy was a case of small beginnings. I remember when we had no more than twenty or thirty fans at the most. They’d be down at the front and the rest of the audience was indifferent. And it feels so special, because you and the audience kid yourselves that you’re in on this big secret. It’s that English elitism and you feel kind of cool. It all gets so dissipated when you get bigger.
Q magazine, February 1997
The venue was the Toby Jug pub in Tolworth, Surrey. This date is sometimes given as the start of the tour proper, since the initial gig, at Aylesbury’s Friars Club, took place two weeks before and could be considered a warm-up show.
Bowie and the Spiders From Mars were joined by Nicky Graham on piano.
The first gig of the Ziggy tour was at the Toby Jug, a large, red-brick pub in Tolworth near Kingston, on 10 February. About sixty people were there and we came on around 9 p.m. Before the show we got changed into our stage gear in a tiny dressing room and we could hear the punters outside drinking and chatting. When we went on stage, we played that little pub as if it was a stadium. I watched Bowie, Mick and Trevor up front; they were full of energy, and made sure the crowd gave them their full attention. It was a great start to the tour.
We were optimistic, and we knew we’d build up momentum as time passed – but some of the early gigs were only half full. The girls usually liked it, but most of the guys didn’t: the show was so over the top and outrageous, especially in small spaces like those.
Spider From Mars: My Life With Bowie
The Toby Jug later became a branch of McDonald’s, but was demolished in 2008.
Also on this day...
- 1971: Travel: Houston to San Francisco
- 1971: Travel: Atlanta to Houston, Texas
- 1967: Recording: The Laughing Gnome
- 1966: Live: David Bowie and the Buzz, Mecca Ballroom, Leicester
Want more? Visit the David Bowie history section.