IRON MAIDEN @ QM Union, University of Glasgow, Scotland, February 2nd 1980. First Maiden tour ever!

Ticket for Iron Maiden at the (then) 300-capacity student bar at the University of Glasgow!

I often find myself surfing around youtube, looking for early videos of bands I love to see how it all started and how they looked, sounded and so on. With a band like Iron Maiden, which are now metal legends, diving into the history of the band is extremely exciting!

Iron Maiden started their very first concert tour EVER on February the first, 1980, in Aberdeen, Scotland. This ticket, which I am fortunate enough to have in my collection, is from the second date of that very same tour. On the second of February 1980, Paul Di’Anno, Steve Harris, Dave Murray, Dennis Stratton and Clive Burr pulled their tired band van up by the backdoor of the Queen Margareth Union, which is and was part of the Glasgow University student society. The QM Union has today been expanded, but at the time it had a max capacity of 300 visitors. Imagine; Iron Maiden playing at a venue the size of your local pub!

Iron Maiden had actually never even appeared on record yet. Their first appearance on an album was on the Metal for Muthas compilation (released on 15 February 1980, 13 days after the show my ticket is from) with two early versions of “Sanctuary” and “Wrathchild”. The release led to an ensuing tour which featured several other bands linked with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal.

File:IRON MAIDEN - Manchester Apollo - 1980.jpg
Paul Di’Anno and Steve Harris in 1980

Show info: The ticket is for the Glasgow, Scotland show on the 2nd February 1980. One of two local student unions,  the one called Queen Margareth Union, had been fortunate enough to host the second evening of the ‘Metal for Muthas’ tour, which consisted of up-and-coming brit metal bands. Later known as part of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM). Iron Maiden had signed a record deal with EMI Records a couple of months earlier and had been impressing the living crap out of every audience they’d appeared in front of so far. They were on the first step on the ladder to the stars.

Ticket info: This 33 year old ticket is in excellent condition, especially considering the fact that it was present during a full Maiden gig among 300 crazy students. It has been torn relatively gently in the upper left corner at the entrance, apart from that it’s been taken care of really well. Well done!

What is it worth?: I can tell you right off the bat: This ticket is metal history. There were only 300 people at the show. Students in the fair city of Glasgow. 300 tickets! How many saved theirs? Not many. In fact, there’s a very good chance this is the only one left in the world! An insanely cool memory from the very beginning of the Iron Maiden world domination! Hell, this is so cool! To a collector I’d value it at 150 USD.

Venue info and tour poster: File:Metal for Muthas London Tour Poster.jpg

Photo from Tiffany’s Club in Edinburgh, Scotland, two days after the QM Union Show. Photo courtesy of
The Queen Margaret Union entrance

Video / links from the gig: I think its very hard to find any video or even audio from this gig. This video is from their april 1980 show at the most ‘Maiden  of all pubs in the world, Ruskin Arms in London.

The band: (from Wikipedia): Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band from Leyton in east London that were formed in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. The band’s discography has grown to include a total of thirty-seven albums: fifteen studio albums; eleven live albums; four EPs; and seven compilations.

Pioneers of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Iron Maiden achieved initial success during the early 1980s. After several line-up changes, the band went on to release a series of US and UK platinum and gold albums, including 1982’s The Number of the Beast, 1983’s Piece of Mind, 1984’s Powerslave, 1985’s live release Live After Death, 1986’sSomewhere in Time and 1988’s Seventh Son of a Seventh Son. Since the return of lead vocalist Bruce Dickinson and guitarist Adrian Smith in 1999, the band have undergone a resurgence in popularity, with their latest studio offering, The Final Frontier, peaking at No. 1 in 28 different countries and receiving widespread critical acclaim.

Considered one of the most successful heavy metal bands in history, Iron Maiden have sold over 85 million records worldwide with little radio or television support. The band won the Ivor Novello Award for international achievement in 2002, and were also inducted into the Hollywood RockWalk in Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, California during their United States tour in 2005. As of August 2011, the band have played almost 2000 live shows throughout their career. For the past 30 years, the band have been supported by their famous mascot, “Eddie”, who has appeared on almost all of their album and single covers, as well as in their live shows.


Artist: Iron Maiden
Date: 1980-02-02
Venue: QM Union, Glasgow, Scotland
Tour: Metal for Muthas

Likely setlist, based on articles from the tour:

  1. Wrathchild 
  2. Sanctuary 
  3. Prowler 
  4. Remember Tomorrow 
  5. Running Free 
  6. Transylvania 
  7. Strange World 
  8. Phantom of the Opera 
  9. Charlotte the Harlot 
  10. Iron Maiden 
  11. Transylvania

As always; if you have any questions – feel free to mail me: LBMikalsen @ gmail . com or leave a comment and I’ll get back to you 🙂

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