Coronavirus: Low ticket sales force Saxon's Biff Byford to call off UK and European solo tour
Old-school metal legends 'Saxon' has been a fan favourite, throughout. But, in a new development, the band's 69-year-old lead singer Biff Byford has had to cancel his upcoming UK & European tour dates due to low sales. The sparse interest among fans was hinted to be due to the ongoing coronavirus scare. The singer is the latest to join the list of musicians who have been cancelling shows for similar concerns like Miley Cyrus, BTS, Green Day, Avril Lavigne, Khalid, Madonna, Pearl Jam and Slipknot.
The revered "Heavy Metal Bard of the North" had been making plans to go on the road in support of his debut solo album, 'School Of Hard Knocks', which was recently released on February 21. The fire-breathing vocalist's 21-date tour of the United Kingdom and Europe had originally been slated for April and May of this year, but due to bad timing and unforeseen crowd turnouts, has been called off.
In a statement released by Byford's publicist, the reasons were explicitly stated, "We are very sorry to announce the cancellation of the Biff Byford solo tour previously scheduled for April & May 2020. The cancellation is mainly due to low ticket sales, which may or may not have been affected by the current Worldwide Covid 19 Virus pandemic."
Never one to sugarcoat the truth, Biff Byford candidly admitted, “The honest truth is the tickets for the forthcoming tour have just not sold as everyone expected for whatever reason, so we have canceled the dates as scheduled, with a view to hopefully re-visiting them at a later date."
The vocalist revealed he had been keen to go out on tour, considering his previous tours of Europe had been a huge success and his new solo album had also been selling rather well. "It’s sad as I was looking forward to the spoken word & live band show but it’s just not to be at this time. I want to thank everyone who bought the album and supported me. Keep the faith and see you on the road with Saxon,” the vocalist signed off.
To see the entire statement by Byford, you can check out the video message for his fans here below.
The shows from Byford were in “An Evening With Biff Byford” format and were to be rolled out in two halves. The first half was going to feature a spoken word show emceed by Don Jamieson, the American comedian & star of VH1 Classic’s 'That Metal Show'. Don would quiz Biff on all aspects of his life and career in the first half of the evening, and the second half would then consist of a live show with Biff and his band.
The now-canceled tour dates were as follows:
Friday 17 - UK - Gateshead, Sage 2
Saturday 18 - UK - Birmingham, Town Hall
Monday 20 – UK - Glasgow, St. Lukes
Tuesday 21 – UK - Leeds, City Varieties
Wednesday 22 – UK - Bath, Komedia
Friday 24 – UK - Liverpool, Arts Club
Saturday 25 – UK - Aberdare, Coliseum Theatre
Monday 27 – UK - Milton Keynes, Stables
Tuesday 28 – UK – London, Islington Assembly Hall
Wednesday 29 – UK – Brighton, Old Market
Friday 1 - The Netherlands - Tilburg, 013
Saturday 2 - Germany - Essen, Turock
Sunday 3 - Belgium - Sint-Niklaas, Casino
Tuesday 5 - Germany - Hamburg, Gruenspan
Friday 8 - Sweden - Malmo, Kulturbolaget
Saturday 9 - Sweden - Trollhattan, N3 Stagebox
Sunday 10 - Sweden - Stockholm, Nalen
Tuesday 12 - Germany - Berlin, Passionskirche
Wednesday 13 - Germany - Munich, Technikum
Thursday 14 - Switzerland - Zurich, Dynamo
Friday 15 - France - Vaureal, Le Forum
Ticket refunds will be available from point of purchase. In better news for Byford fans, 'Saxon' will continue on their path of world domination with dates throughout the spring and summer, including a sold-out Glasgow Barrowlands on March 27, a sold-out London Eventim Apollo on March 28 and a soon to be sold-out show at the Manchester O2 Apollo on March 29.
The last remaining tickets for the Manchester show can be purchased by clicking here.