One of a series of five oversized posters produced by innovative Stiff Records design director Barney Bubbles to promote the first Stiff Records tour, which was known as the Live Stiffs Tour or 5 Live Stiffs, from 3rd October to 5th November 1977. Signed to Stiff Records as a solo artist, Ian Dury started performing with his band Ian Dury & the Blockheads for the UK Live Stiffs Tour alongside Elvis Costello and The Attractions, Wreckless Eric and The New Rockets, Nick Lowe's Last Chicken in the Shop, and Larry Wallis's Psychedelic Rowdies. The five promo posters showed each of the five lead musicians (Ian Dury, Nick Lowe, Elvis Costello, Larry Wallis and Wreckless Eric), photographed by Stiff photographer Chris Gabrin, and the graphic images silkscreened in five electric colourways by the prolific Bubbles, with Dury printed in neon pastels. Although the running order was planned to rotate each night, it became clear that Dury and Costello were the most popular acts, so the shows usually ended with a performance of Dury's Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll. Following the successful tour, which made Costello and Dury into household names, Stiff Records launched a full on Ian Dury marketing campaign, resulting in the 1979 No. 1 single Hit Me with Your Rhythm Stick. All five posters in the series are now extremely rare, with the posters of Costello and Dury the most sought after. Another copy of this electrifying poster resides in the permanent collection of the V&A Museum, London.
Very good (B+)
Prior to backing this poster had one vertical and three horizontal folds with light wear and a few splits to fold lines and creasing, wear and staple holes to corners and edges. Backing has smoothed and diminished the folds and staple holes. A few minor creases remain to edges with a few faint scuffs to artwork. Image and colours excellent.