Here’s a strange bit of fan service, The Who are honouring tickets to a cancelled Rhode Island gig… from 1979.

Billboard reports that the iconic British rock band were originally to play the 1979 concert in the New England region of Providence, but it was shut down by then-Mayor Buddy Cianci over safety concerns at the concert following a show in Cincinatti, Ohio where a crowd stampede killed 11 people.

At the time, the mod-rockers promised they’d return to make up for the canned gig, but has never returned to play Providence live since.

This week however, the band announced that it will end its latest tour – celebrating the group’s 1973 opus Quadrophenia by playing it in its entirety – with a performance in Providence on February 26 at the same venue where the originally cancelled show was held 33 years prior.

Now called the Dunkin Donuts Center, the venue’s owner will be honouring entry to the current show to those who still have their tickets to the original 1979 performance.

General Manager Lawrence Lepore says the venue will honour tickets to the February 2013 show and while many sensibly opted for refunds for the cancelled performance, Lepore believes others would have held on to their stubs for memorabilia.

“Somewhere, someplace, someone’s got it stashed,” says Lepore. “The question is, are they willing to give that up? If they are, we’re willing to take it.” Lepore put the call out on local radio, including urging owners to call in if they had one of the rare, decade-old tickets in their possession. But no one did.

The original tickets were only $US 14 while admission for February’s Quadrophenia show range $US 57.50 to $US 127.50, making for quite the saving on the 33 year wait, with all of the vintage tickets redeemed being donated to a worthy cause, says Lepore, to help raise money for Rhode Island’s Special Olympics event.