ABC to Play “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s” Summer Music Festival at Fremont Street Experience

June 14, 2011 by  

ABC's Martin Fry on stage
“Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s”
music festival at Fremont Street Experience will feature a free concert by legendary band ABC on Saturday, June 18 at 9 p.m. at the 3rd Street Stage.  

This is one of only two dates ABC will play in the United States this summer. ABC helped kick-start the 80s with their own brand of pop and their debut album The Lexicon of Love released in May of 1982 that went straight into the UK album charts at number one and charted in the U.S. Showcasing the hit songs “Tears Are Not Enough,” ”Poison Arrow,” “The Look Of Love” and “All Of My Heart” this album has been acknowledged as the greatest British pop LP of its decade, and remains one of the 10 best of all time.

ABC once again captured American audiences with hits “How To Be A Millionaire,” “Be Near Me,” alongside Billboard dance chart number ones “Vanity Kills” and “Ocean Blue.” By the summer of 1987 the worldwide hit “When Smokey Sings” had powered its way toward the top of the American charts. Heavy MTV rotation and an appearance on the legendary show Soul Train cemented even greater success in the U.S.A for the band.

The 90s saw the release of Abracadabra, with “Love Conquers All,” the BlackBox remix of “Say It” and The Lexicon of Live a live album that showcases ABC on stage. Skyscraping in 1997 represented a tour de force of gilt edged ABC with “Stranger Things” and “Only The Best Will Do” embracing Glam inspired rock and roll.

In April 2008 ABC released their first studio album in over 10 years, Traffic, a collaboration between Martin Fry, David Palmer (who had been in ABC during The Lexicon of Love) and Chuck Kentis. The first single “The Very First Time” was a big hit on BBC Radio 2, with the follow up “Love Is Strong” demonstrating that Martin Fry’s song writing, stagecraft and musicianship is still as contemporary as it was in the beginning. In April 2009 ABC performed their debut album The Lexicon Of Love in its entirety to a sell-out audience at London’s prestigious Royal Albert Hall accompanied by the BBC Concert Orchestra, some 27 years after its debut release. ABC still gives audiences a great night of music and entertainment whether performing as a band, or with an Orchestra, Martin Fry is the consummate showman.

About “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s”
Fremont Street Experience’s “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s” highlights the music and culture of the 1980s with free headliner concerts. Throughout the summer visitors can also enjoy a stage extravaganza The Nancy Rayguns, an original production show, “VJ Invasion: Launch Date 8.1.81,” Las Vegas based premiere cover band Venus Rising, Blackwood’s countdown of her 100 greatest songs of the 80s on Viva Vision and a chance to travel Back to the Future with a rare 80s icon, a DeLorean DMC-12.

Blackwood, an original MTV VJ, is synonymous with ‘80s music, helping to set the musical tastes and trends still celebrated today. She continues to highlight the era that changed music forever with her radio shows on Sirius XM channel “80s on 8” and on syndicated radio shows “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s” and “Nina Blackwood’s New Wave Nation.” Blackwood is also revealing her personal 100 greatest songs of the ‘80s over the course of the 100-day celebration with one selection revealed every night on Viva Vision.

Free Headliner Concerts
Blackwood guest hosts a series of free headliner concerts throughout the summer that includes ‘80s artists: Terri Nunn & Berlin on May 28; Missing Persons with Warren Cuccurullo & Dale Bozzio on June 4; ABC on June 18; Colin Hay of Men at Work on July 2; Wang Chung with Naked Eyes on July 23; Loverboy on Aug. 6; Tony Hadley of Spandau Ballet with Men Without Hats on Aug. 20 and Howard Jones on Sept. 3. All concerts start at 9 p.m.

The Nancy Rayguns
The Nancy Rayguns are more than just a cover band; they are a complete show with stage sets, music videos, comedy and of course, the VAL-2600, 1985’s most powerful interactive supercomputer. Their mission is to rid the world of bogus music and to help the audience relive the 1980s with the best jams of that era. The band, which consists of Kim Gone Wild, Iceman, Dig Dug, Howard Joneson and The Noid, will bring audiences back to the days of leg warmers and scrunchies with spot-on renditions of such classic hits like “Hungry Like the Wolf,” “Kids in America,” “My Sharona,” “Safety Dance,” “Lucky Star,” “Electric Avenue,” “Its Tricky” and many more. The Nancy Rayguns will perform Tuesdays through Fridays with three 45-minute sets starting at 9, 10 and 11 p.m. on the 3rd Street Stage.

“VJ Invasion: Launch Date 8.1.81”
Fremont Street Experience’s “VJ Invasion: Launch Date 8.1.81” is an homage to the video music generation that began Aug. 1, 1981 with the birth of MTV. This original production is a 35-minute show full of high energy singing and dancing featuring classic hits from the 80s such as “Video Killed the Radio Star,” “We Got the Beat,” “Tainted Love,” “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun,” “Walk Like an Egyptian,” “Whip It,” “Sweet Dreams” and many more. Visitors can enjoy this blast from the past Thursdays through Tuesdays with three shows a night at 8, 9 and 10 p.m. on 1st Street Stage with the first performance starting on Sunday, May 29.

Venus Rising
Venus Rising is a well-known Las Vegas-based premiere cover band with a huge song list that covers everything from the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, to current top 40 music. Venus Rising features Miss Heather Riggi on lead vocals, Eden Stollman on guitars, Mark Sidener on drums and David Mark Miller on keyboards and bass. Heather puts on quite the stage show, her dynamic singing and performing is not to be missed. Eden has played with Vixen and Bob Seger, Mark is highly regarded as a veteran of the Vegas music scene and David is a well-known TV composer. Venus Rising has opened for Jefferson Airplane/Starship, The Fifth Dimension, Rare Earth, The Grass Roots and Canned Heat. For complete band bio and information visit their website at
Venus Rising will be playing the 3rd Street Stage at 9:10 p.m., 10:10 p.m. and 11:10 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays throughout Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s (except headliner Saturdays on June 4, June 18, July 23 and Aug. 20).

Fremont Street Experience’s three stages will be active every night as the 100-day flashback to the 80s takes over downtown through Labor Day Weekend.

The nightly lineup of Viva Vision shows will include custom productions remembering the decade of the ‘80s. Also featured on Viva Vision during “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s” will be “KISS Over Vegas” highlighting 1983 hit “Lick it Up,” “George Thorogood & the Destroyer’s Bad to the Bone” and a 1980’s chart toppers Queen with “A Tribute to Queen.

For complete information on the headliner concerts and nightly entertainment, visit to plan an awesome experience that will take you back to the ‘80s. You can also become a Facebook fan of Fremont Street Experience to get the latest insight and buzz about “Nina Blackwood’s Absolutely 80s.”

About Fremont Street Experience
Fremont Street Experience is a five-block entertainment complex located in historic downtown Las Vegas. Fremont Street Experience features Viva Vision, the world’s largest video screen which is 1,500 feet long, 90 feet wide and suspended 90 feet above the urban pedestrian mall. Viva Vision features nightly spectacular light and sounds shows with 12.5 million LED lights and a 550,000-watt sound system. Fremont Street Experience is a one-of-a-kind venue which includes free nightly concerts and entertainment on two stages. With direct pedestrian access to 10 casinos, more than 60 restaurants and specialty retail kiosks, Fremont Street Experience attracts over 17 million annual visitors. Fremont Street Experience can be found online at

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