Black and Blue (video)

Black and Blue
Black and blue.jpg
Video by
RecordedNassau Coliseum, Long Island, New York, 1980
GenreHard Rock, Heavy metal
Length90 minutes
Black Sabbath video chronology
Never Say Die
Black and Blue
The Black Sabbath Story, Vol. 1
Blue Öyster Cult video chronology
Black and Blue
Live 1976

Black and Blue is a live video by hard rock bands Black Sabbath and Blue Öyster Cult filmed during their 1980 co-headlining tour of the United States, known as the "Black and Blue Tour". The film was originally released to theaters in 1981 as a concert film. It was later released on VHS, Betamax and laserdisc video format, but has not been officially released on DVD.[1][2]

Film and video releases

In 1980, Black Sabbath co-headlined a number of the U.S. shows on their worldwide "Heaven & Hell Tour" with Blue Öyster Cult, at the suggestion of Sandy Pearlman, who was managing both bands at the time. These shows became known as the "Black and Blue Tour" and were very well attended, often ranking in Billboard magazine's weekly "Top Boxoffice" charts.[1][3][4]

The two bands' October 17, 1980 performances at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Hempstead, New York were filmed and edited together into the concert film Black and Blue, which was released to theaters in 1981 after the conclusion of the tour. Following its initial release, the film played for some time on the theatrical midnight movie circuit in the United States.[2] In the 1980s, it was released for the home video market in VHS format by Polygram Video in the UK, and by Warner Bros. in US. It was also released in laserdisc format by Polygram in UK and Warner Bros. in Japan.[5] According to Martin Popoff, a Betamax version was also issued.[1]

In 2002, a DVD release of the film was announced by Castle Pictures, and was available for pre-order from online merchants.[5][6] However, the release was postponed several times before finally being cancelled in January 2003.[5][7]

In 2004, a second announcement was made of an upcoming DVD release, this time by Universal Video. However, the release was again postponed and then cancelled at the last minute. A few copies were sold by some record stores in European countries that had received advance shipments before the withdrawal.[5] Since then, there has been no official DVD release of the film, although various bootlegs are available.[5]

Several sources, including Castle Pictures, have indicated that the DVD has not been released because Black Sabbath, in particular Tony Iommi, do not want it released.[1][5] The 2011 book Black Sabbath FAQ by Martin Popoff contained statements from members of Blue Öyster Cult about the video, with Joe Bouchard saying that Iommi and Sabbath opposed release of the video, and Eric Bloom opining that the video was not very good due to the lack of post-production, which was too expensive at the time the film was made.[1] On a 2013 episode of That Metal Show, Buck Dharma of Blue Öyster Cult talked very minimally about the release and said to his knowledge, the reason it has not been re-released is because the members of Black Sabbath don't want it being distributed, for reasons unknown to Dharma.[8]