Dandy in the Underworld
Marc Bolan & T Rex
Prior to the UK tour, T Rex played a series of low profile concerts, in small venues, in France. Although seen by many as warm-up gigs for the UK tour, at eight dates, it was in reality the same length as the following UK tour. Most of the concerts were held in small clubs and consisted of a relatively short set of songs, mixing the greatest hits with the new sound of the soon to be released 'Dandy In The Underworld' album.
For the UK, the first dates were announced in February 1977 with dates for Hanley, West Runton and Portsmouth being added a couple of weeks later. The tour, originally scheduled to be 9 dates, was shortened to 8 dates when the concert at Hanley was cancelled.
Unlike the Futuristic Dragon tour of 1976, most of the concerts were held in the larger, well established, music venues. The fact that T Rex's London gig at The Rainbow was exactly 5 years to the day that T Rex had played 2 incredibly successful concerts to 20,000 fans at Wembley Pool (now named Wembley Arena) could not have gone unnoticed by Bolan.
Back in 1972 the front page of the NME proclaimed it to be 'Bolan's Triumph' and featured a double page centre spread proclaiming '20,0000 screamers and the day that pop came back' (one of many unforgettable headlines that Bolan had at the time). Although this lacked the scale of the Wembley concerts of '72, it was still a 'triumph' of a sorts and seen by fans and the media alike as a vast improvement on the previous year's concert at the Lyceum in London.
T Rex would only play 2 further UK concerts, one at West Runton Pavilion (a small venue but with a great reputation amongst the emerging punk bands) and, the last ever UK concert, at Portsmouth Locarno.
After the UK tour T Rex would only perform one more concert at Grona Lund, Stockholm, Sweden. This concert featured the same T Rex line-up as the French and UK tours and, in all probability, the same set of songs. Although this is generally considered to be a 'one-off' concert, and therefore not part of the Dandy tour, it is featured here because of its historical importance. It is also fair to assume that this would have been the last gig by this T Rex line-up as Miller Anderson (2nd guitar) left the group around July 1977 and Herbie Flowers (bass guitar) had already signalled his intention to leave after the 'Marc' shows.