November 14, 1985
Convention Center Arena
Opening act: Rough Cutt
This show was the tour for Ronnie James Dio's Sacred Heart album, but I really went to hear the stuff from the previous two albums, Holy Diver and The Last in Line. Dio turned in a smacking performance, but I was once again left to wondering exactly how headline groups chose their opening acts. Dice? Paper slips in a hat? Ouija board?
I mean, really ---- Rough Cutt?
Oh, oh I see. Then I read this on Rough Cutt's page at the site of all truth and knowing:
Dio’s wife Wendy Dio was the group’s manager, and Dio himself helped write one of the band’s songs.Well, if it works for them, it works for them. It didn't do much as an opening act, though.
And here's one more tidbit about this concert: This was the first major show to be held in the Convention Center Arena after the city banned smoking in that venue. Talk about an event! One of the hallmarks of a show in the Arena was the hundreds of lighters being lit after the house lights went down, and those lighters weren't sparking up just to make pretty little flames. They were lighting hundreds of cigarettes and hand-rolled cigarettes, if you know what I mean. A rock show in the Arena was nothing without clouds of audience-produced smoke.
So I went to this show curious to see how the officials would handle the ban. And, man, did they ever come down hard on the smokers! I watched each person in uniform, and as soon as a rocker would light up a Camel they would swoop down and pull those poor schmoes out of the crowd. And I think they were throwing them out of the Arena altogether.
But, curiously enough, that new rule seemed to apply just to the cigarette smokers. Because when the lights went down for Dio, I smelled just as much sweet leaf as ever. And I didn't see a single head get the boot.