Live: Palais des Sports, Lyon

David Bowie performed at the Palais des Sports de Gerland in Lyon, France, on 26 May 1978, as part of the Isolar II Tour.

It was the 41st date of the tour, which began on 29 March in San Diego.

Bowie’s guitarists were Carlos Alomar and Adrian Belew. Simon House was on electric violin, Sean Mayes played piano, and Roger Powell was on keyboards and synthesizers. George Murray played bass guitar and Dennis Davis was on drums.

We drove to the gig through drab dusty streets of big square, white houses with wooden shutters, a typical provincial French town, Lyons. It was Friday and looked like Sunday. The gig was a large, round building with a fluted roof like a dustbin lid. As we approached we slid past a row of dusty, dark-blue police riot-trucks – the ones which feature in so many French gangster films and always seem to be lurking around Paris corners. As we circled the building we passed a large crowd of kids. Later when David arrived, his French driver tried to drop him off in front of the building, right beside the crowd… ‘I must go back to ze ‘otel to collect some more people.’

Inside this odd place we found a five-star meal – a fabulous spread of lobster salad, fragrant hot food and excellent wines. The crowd by contrast were the youngest and scruffiest we had seen – they looked like someone else’s audience. But they were noisily appreciative and we did a great show. Someone tossed a magazine on-stage for David to sign and during a solo he sat on his heels leafing through it slowly. Every now and then an empty beer can would sail into the air, sometimes falling back into the crowd, sometimes onto the stage – the mood of the crowd was exuberant and stimulating.

Sean Mayes
Life On Tour With Bowie

Bowie returned to the Palais des Sports de Gerland on 24 and 25 May 1983during the Serious Moonlight Tour.

The setlist

Last updated: 19 October 2023
Live: Pavilion de Paris, Paris
Live: Palais des Sports, Marseille
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