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The Clash • I Fought the Law • Live at the Lyceum • 28 December 1978
On this day, the 28th of December 1978, The Clash played the first of two consecutive nights at London’s Lyceum Theatre. The Lyceum shows were the final gigs of the Sort It Out tour.
This video of “I Fought the Law” is the footage shot at that show, taken from the 1980 movie Rude Boy, synced to the remastered live audio from the same show, from The Clash Sound System box set, released in 2013.
All of the live tracks used in Rude Boy are stated as having being re-recorded at Wessex Studios, in London, with the exception of I Fought the Law. If that is to be believed, then what we are hearing is indeed really recorded live.
"I Fought the Law" is a song written by Sonny Curtis of the Crickets and popularized by a cover by the Bobby Fuller Four, which went on to become a top-ten hit for the band in 1966.
In mid-1978, the Clash were working on their second album, Give 'Em Enough Rope. Singer Joe Strummer and guitarist Mick Jones flew to San Francisco to record overdubs in September–October at the Automatt studio. Distributed around the various rooms of the studio complex were classic jukeboxes. Strummer and Jones listened to the Bobby Fuller version of "I Fought the Law" for the first time on one of the jukeboxes. By the time Strummer and Jones returned to England, they could perform the song.
Their version of I Fought the Law first appeared on the EP The Cost of Living in May 1979 in the UK. This cover version helped gain the Clash their first taste of airplay in the States and is one of the best-known cover versions of the song.
Prior to the Cost of Living EP, the band had been performing the song live. This live recording of the song, from the Lyceum Theatre, in London, on December 28, 1978, features as the last track we see performed in the Rude Boy movie. The song, at that stage, was considered the film's title song.
The Clash playing I Fought the Law at the Lyceum in late ’78, is one of my favorite music videos of all time. It astonishes me that there is no good quality version of it online, even on the official Clash YouTube channel.
So here’s the footage from the Rude Boy movie, slightly re-edited and synced to the wonderful sounding Sound System remaster of the audio.
Hope you dig it!
The Clash • I Fought the Law • Live at The Lyceum • 28 December 1978 From Rude Boy • 1980 • Directed by Jack Hazan & David Mingay
The Clash • I Fought the Law • Live at The Lyceum • 28 December 1978 • 2013 Sound System Remaster
Joe Strummer • Lead vocals, rhythm guitar
Mick Jones • Lead guitar, backing vocals
Paul Simonon • Bass, backing vocals
Topper Headon • Drums
Mick Jones / Bill Price / The Clash • Production
Always more videos to follow, so please keep your electric eye on me babe!
I don't own the rights, and I never monetize. Just a fan making videos for other fans.
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