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CANCELLATION:
Due to a serious injury suffered by Cars guitarist Eliot Easton last week, the Blondie/New Cars concert scheduled for Sun. June 18 at the N. Charleston Coliseum was officially cancelled on Tues. June 13. Ticket refunds are available at point of purchase.

Blondie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame in March largely for the trailblazing music the group made in the late 1970s and early 1980s as one of the best groups on the original punk/new wave scene. Nearly 30 years after their release, albums like 1978’s Parallel Lines and ’79’s Eat To The Beat remain among the best, most creative — and for that matter, diverse — records of that era, with songs that ranged from pithy guitar rock (“Hanging On The Telephone,”) to dreamy pop (“Picture This”) to the dance pop of the disco-inspired hit “Heart of Glass.”

Blondie, who broke up in late 1983 and regrouped in the late 1990s, have returned to release two studio albums, No Exit and Curse Of Blondie. Although they haven’t made the same seismic impact as the early records, singer Debbie Harry, guitarist Chris Stein, and drummer Clem Burke agree that today’s Blondie is better than ever.

“We sounded pretty damn weird sometimes back then,” Burke says. “I can’t believe some of these songs that we did. There was quite a disparity.”

The quality of Blondie’s current live show is on display as the group co-headlines a tour with The New Cars.

“I think it’s going to be a very powerful show, and probably one of the most compatible bills that we’ve ever been on,” says Debbie Harry.

Blondie initially reunited in 1999 around core members Harry, Stein, Burke, and keyboardist Jimmy Destri. The other members from the band’s peak era, bassist/guitarist Frank Infante and bassist Nigel Harrison, were replaced by guitarist Paul Carbonara and bassist Leigh Foxx, with a second keyboardist, Kevin Patrick, added to the current lineup. Stein was the prime mover in bringing Blondie back together. He began lobbying for a reunion in the mid-’90s, but it took several years before Harry, Burke and Destri agreed to rejoin forces.

The band returned in 1999 with No Exit, which included a hit single, “Maria.” The Curse Of Blondie didn’t spawn any hits, but it solidified the notion that Blondie were an active, ongoing band.

“You know, we did some pretty inventive things and we sort of broke some ground and, you know, came out of a really powerful time in music,” Harry says.

“When we started, I think rock music was in a pretty stagnant place,” Burke adds. “I don’t really even think that the bands at the time, for the most part, were in touch with the real roots of rock ‘n roll, whether that be R&B or ’50s rock and things like that. I think all that stuff has kind of been neglected and I think we kind of pulled it back into the evolution of what rock music has become now. I think we pushed the music along a little bit. I think that’s probably one of our main contributions.”