Thirty(!) years ago today I was beside myself with excitement for a very special The Cure gig. Ahead of the full Wish Tour, the band announced a clutch of warm-up dates at club venues.
All the shows I had seen up to that point had either been in enormous arenas, or outdoor shows. The Kilburn National Ballroom was a relatively tiny venue for The Cure, and that only added to the feeling of anticipation. Seeing your #CultHeroes live is honour enough, but up close and personal? Even better.
The journey to seeing this gig was fraught. I was studying for a Journalism degree at the time and had an in-class assessment the day that tickets went on sale (at only £10 each!). In these pre-internet days phoning up to book tickets, or queuing in person, were the only options. The only person I knew who would want to go wasn’t able to queue up either, so I had to knuckle down and complete my class assessment while the clock ticked down and – you guessed it – the gig sold out.
First world problems, I know! (Hey, I was still very young back then.) And it turns out I passed the in-class assessment so there is that. I was trying to be responsible, even in the face of my borderline insane Cure obsession! And, luckily I was working a part-time job to support myself so I rolled up my baggy black sleeves, put in several extra hours and saved up some cash.
Long story short, the £10 ticket ended up costing me £60 on the night, but I had enough cash left over for a tour shirt and a couple of beers. People danced and sang along. There were promotional balloons! Happy the man, as the old b-side goes.
The gig itself was a loud, joyous, sweaty sprint through the amazing new double album Wish plus several hits and surprises. The crane camera swinging and floating above the crowd added a showbiz touch to proceedings, and from what I recall there was a fair bit of crowd-surfing going on during the faster numbers. (Hey, this was ’92, the golden age of grunge…)
I emerged from the tiny, packed out venue with a massive grin on my face. I would see The Cure a further nine times on the ’92 Wish tour, in those huge arenas again. But, as an intimate introduction to a massive tour, the 3rd May 1992 would be very hard to beat.
See what The Cure played on 3rd May 1992 here.
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Comment below with your Cure memories! I’d love to hear them!