On This Day (December 8)…Colosseum II in Birmingham

Colosseum II performed on this day in 1975 at the Birmingham Odeon in Birmingham, England.

Original lineup of Colosseum II. Retrieved from here.

At this particular gig, the band was supporting Electric Light Orchestra. Interestingly, a member of Colosseum II, Don Airey, would one day tour with Electric Light Orchestra in the 1990s.

The band had at the time only released a single album, Strange New Flesh. Based on the few bootlegs we have from this period in their history, the setlist was by necessity composed of this sole album. It was bolstered by solos and by a few other songs whose origins I am still investigating.

Neil Murray, who was then part of Colosseum II, recalled that he broke a bass string at the concert. He also recalled that about 600 people attended the concert. Other things I have read suggest that the Birmingham Odeon could house just under 2500 people, so the hall would have been about a quarter full for the group.

No recording of this concert is known to exist.

I talk more about the venue, the Birmingham Odeon, here.

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  • Edit on 2020-12-13: Added anecdotes by Neil Murray. My gratitude, Mr. Murray!

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