Saturday, September 8, 2012

4500 TIMES (I've played a Quo album)

First time I'd heard of the boys, was when I saw Status Quo at Randwick racecourse (with Slade and aussie bands, Caravan and Lindisfarne) in late 1973..suffice it to say, I was hooked totally...they were loud, they were cool and they rocked, yeh, yeh, Slade looked great, BUT Quo were dressed like us in the audience..I saw them again on the Rocking All Over the World tour in 78 at the Hordern Pavillion...

and I was surprised to see Alan Lancaster on stage, cause he didnt show up to flim the video of Rockin, the band actually had a Alan size puppet playing bass on the video..I thought he was out of the band..anyway, I, like anybody else in the Denim Army, bought a few Quo albums, my favourite, probably still is, was the Live in Glasgow album...what a rocking album...I can shut my eyes and still, to this day hear the bloke introducing the band..

IS THERE ANYBODY THATS WANTS ROCK..Is there anybody who wants to ROLL..and ..IS there anybody out there who wants to at the Apollo GLASGOW, we have the number One rock'n'roll band in the land..will you welcome the MAGNIFICENT ...STATUS QUO...

Hey, what about that for an intro...AWESOME....the next time I saw the band live in any way, was on the End of the Road '84 vhs tape...I thought it was a good gig, recently I saw a Francis interview and he said they were all coked of their nuts and you can tell the chemistry between them was just about history..I went back and checked and his right, it was a bit of a shocker..I must had a guts fulla bourbon when I watched it the first time...HAHAAAAA.

ANYWAY...some history of the boys for ya....

The origins of Status Quo were in the rock and roll band "The Spectres" formed in 1962

 The Spectres signed a five-year deal with Piccadilly Records, releasing two singles that year, "I (Who Have Nothing)" and "Hurdy Gurdy Man" (written by Alan Lancaster), and one the next year called "(We Ain't Got) Nothin' Yet" ...All three singles bombed miserably.......Then after a spell in the toilet writing some songs Francis came up with Pictures of Matchstick men, which turned their fortunes about ....

BUT...after seeing Fleetwood Mac one night , the boys all realised they liked the "shuffling" boogie beat and decided from  that point to ditch the flower power clothes and grow the hair and become a boogie band......and we all know what happened after that....


From 1977 onwards, the band's sound became more polished as they used more famous producers, these included Roger Glover from Deep Purple, who was the first outside producer to work with Quo since Pye's John Schroeder in the early 1970s and produced "Wild Side of Life" and its B-side "All Through The Night" in 1976.

1977's Rockin' All Over the World's title track, a minor hit for its writer John Fogerty (formerly of Creedence Clearwater Revival) became one of Status Quo's most enduring anthems. Sales remained high in the UK throughout the 1980s, but tensions within the band and a serious drinking problem saw John Coghlan leaving the band late in 1981.

His replacement was Pete Kircher from the 1960s pop band Honeybus. This line-up played its last  gig at the infamous 1984  Milton Keynes Bowl show, although the band were contracted to record more albums. Status Quo's final appearance with the Kircher line-up opened the Live Aid charity event at Wembley in July 1985.

Rossi recorded and released two solo singles with long-time writing partner Bernie Frost.

Rick Parfitt however recorded a solo album, Recorded Delivery, with bass player John "Rhino" Edwards and drummer Jeff Rich...then in mid 85, Rossi, Parfitt and Bown, along with Edwards and Rich, started work on a new Status Quo album.

Then came the legal shit storm by Alan Lancaster, who by this time had settled in Australia, joining the Party Boys and forming  The Lancaster Bombers,  took out a legal injunction to stop the band from using the Status Quo name on any records, citing his increasing musical differences with the group.

 The specific dispute concerned two tracks which became hit singles for the group around that time. Lancaster had written the track "Ol' Rag Blues", but was angered when the producers chose to release a version with Rossi singing the lead vocal in preference to the one sung by himself. The injunction also prevented the release of a single, "Naughty Girl", for which a catalogue number was issued by Vertigo....yeh, petty hey?

An out-of-court settlement was made in January 1986, enabling the new Status Quo to continue recording the In The Army Now album, of which "Naughty Girl" was reworked as "Dreamin'". and Alan Lancaster formally left Status Quo formally in 1987.

On 12 July 1986 they played at Queen's Live at Wembley '86 concert.

The commercially successful In the Army Now album was released in 1986, the single of the same name becoming one of the band's biggest selling UK singles, reaching number 2. The following album, Ain't Complaining, released in 1988, didnt do as good but did the rocking tune "Burning Bridges" on it which got to number 5. .....

This was later turned into the greatest song in the history of human existence  when it was re-recorded (with new lyrics) in April 1994 with Manchester United F.C. as "Come on You Reds" ...excuse me, I slipped on my soccer hat there for a second...HAHAHAHA....Bands have done some unique things to promote an album promote the release of the "Rock 'Til You Drop" album (1991), Quo performed four arena gigs across the UK in the space of a single day, earning them a place in the Guinness Book of Records..

Then came an album I quite enjoyed , Famous in the Last Century (2000) consisted almost entirely of covers (with the only exception being the title track to the latter). The former brought some chart success for Quo with covers of Fleetwood Mac's "Don't Stop" and The Beach Boys' "Fun, Fun, Fun". The band became involved in an acrimonious dispute with pommy radio after the station refused to include the "Fun Fun Fun" single on the radio station's playlist.

In December 2005, it was announced that Parfitt had been taken ill and was undergoing tests for throat cancer. All subsequent dates of the UK tour were cancelled as a result. However, the growths in Parfitt's throat were later found to be benign and were successfully removed.

 In May 2006, a fully recovered Parfitt and the band returned to the NEC Birmingham to play the show that they had postponed in December. This was their 40th show at the venue, and was recorded for a DVD, entitled "Just Doin' It", which I own and have roaring through the cans on a reglar basis....

On the 1 July 2007, they performed in front of 63,000 people at the newly built Wembley Stadium as part of the Concert for Diana. .....Their twenty-eighth studio album, In Search of the Fourth Chord, was released on the band's own Fourth Chord label in September 2007 in the UK

In 2008, they teamed up with German techno group Scooter to record a jumpstyle version of their 1979 single "Whatever You Want" entitled "Jump That Rock (Whatever You Want)"...... In December 2008, they released their 75 th single and first Christmas single, entitled "It's Christmas Time", which peaked at No. 40 in the UK Singles Chart

And then came something that Francis and Rick (and me just quietly) would never have expected, they both were awarded an  OBE  each in the New Year Honours 2010 for their services to music.

There will be a reunion of the original four members (Francis Rossi, Rick Parfitt, Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan) in March 2013, and the original lineup will also record an album in 2013.

But unlike KISS, the project will exist alongside the current lineup of the band, which will also release a new record next year a soundtrack to their movie Bula Quo! which will have 6 re-recorded classics and 6 new songs........AND...Just recently the Quo and their song "Down Down" has been showing up on Coles Supermarket commercials ( must of got a quid or six for that I reckon) so, there you go...

QUO's Website

TIME TO BOOGIE....seeya next time

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