The band that melded Southern Fried Rock with Arena Rock in the Eighties played at the Civic Center in Portland 32 years ago this week. That band was 38 Special, the outfit formed by childhood friends Donnie Barnes and Donnie Van Zant (Ronnie and Johnny’s Brother) in 1974.

They came to Blimpville for the second time on their Strength in Numbers tour. It was July 8, 1986, with Canada’s Honeymoon Suite opening the show. Their first trip here was in June of 1977 as co-openers with Foreigner for the the Lynyrd Skynyrd show.

New songs Like No Other Night and Somebody Like You were blastin’ on the airwaves of WBLM and we heard ’em live for the first time at the CCCC that night. Of course they also played Hold On LooselyCaught Up In You, Rockin’ Into The Night and more.

Slick suit coats, heavy riffs with a little twang, soaring vocals, and TWO drummers…yeeeee haw!!