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That was the Quo month that was ... April 2011

1st - Quo concert at Zenith, Lille, France

The first proper Quo show of the year saw the band heading to France for a gig in Lille on April 1st (no joke!). Supported by Wille & The Bandits, a crowd of about 2500 enjoyed the following setlist.

Some great photos of the band in action in Lille can be found here.

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3rd - Francis Rossi show on Planet Rock radio

Francis presented his fifth show on Planet Rock radio on April 3rd. Another eleven tracks were spun with the usual banter between each song. First up was Cream with "Badge" followed by a minor rant about 'supergroups', before talking about John Coghlan's idea that the reason Deep Purple named their song "Speed King" was after the new Speed Pedal around on drumkits at that time, rather than the more obvious drug conotations. Next was "Speed King" itself, before familiar territory for Quo fans with Robert Palmer's "Johnny and Mary" (as covered by Quo on the "Don't Stop" album). Francis talked about hanging out with Palmer in Sweden when he was with Vinegar Joe. Moving to Wales, next up was "Have A Nice Day" from the Stereophonics before Big Country with "Look Away" (who Francis described as a "great band"). He went on to talk about how influential The Kinks had been and played "Tired Of Waiting For You".

It was then straight into "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult (a "cock rock band") and Francis talked about touring America with them and playing around with CB radios! Next up, Francis talked about Robert Plant and how he'd come to see the band recently and then played "Please Read The Letter" from Page & Plant. Heading into the blues, John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers was next with "All Your Love" then the penultimate track in the shape of the classic Steve Miller Band song, "The Joker". Francis finished up with "Question" from The Moody Blues.

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3rd - Francis Rossi one-hour special on Resonance FM 104.4

Henry Scott-Irvine presented an interview with Francis Rossi on Resonance FM 104.4 on April 3rd. The show featured a number of tracks written, produced or performed by Francis in addition to a swag of Quo tracks. Francis also played a few bits of live guitar, making this quite a rare interview piece.

Although the interview sounded like it was recorded in a cupboard, Francis gave some genuinely interesting responses. He talked about the recent solo album and St Luke's DVD recording, as well as recording Quo's live album at Glasgow Apollo. The psychadelic era was discussed and the Ozzy Osbourne idea for "You'll Come Round". He also talked about the tie up with Paul Camilleri and the "Quo song vs. not Quo song" debate. He spoke very fondly of working with John Du Cann and the way his two solo albums all came together. He went on to talk about his musical influences, from early blues to his love for The Everly Brothers. He also talked about the perception of him as a grumpy old man! He named "Caroline" as the song he doesn't mind playing again and again and again...

The full list of tracks played during the show was:

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4th - Quo concert at Zenith, Clermont-Ferrand, France

Quo continued their march through France with a concert at Clermont-Ferrand's Zenith on April 4th. A subdued audience of about 2000 witnessed the same setlist and some superb pro photos of the gig can be found here.

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5th - Quo concert at Le Dôme, Marseille, France

The next show on the French tour saw Quo hitting Marseille on April 5th. An encouragable crowd of about 2500 enjoyed the usual set and some good photos of the gig can be found here.

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7th - Quo concert at Zenith, Toulouse, France

The next show on the French tour saw Quo playing in Toulouse on April 7th. A good crowd of about 2500 enjoyed the usual set and the photographers went wild at this gig - see here, here and here for some great shots!

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10th - Francis Rossi show on Planet Rock radio

Francis presented his sixth show on Planet Rock radio on April 10th. The show kicked off in rocking style with AC/DC's "Back In Black" and Francis said they "never change their music" and can't decide whether he loves it or hates it! He then talked about "cock rock" as a lead in to Def Leppard's "Run Riot" before playing Mike Oldfield with "Moonlight Shadow". He admitted to missing the Oldfield craze but did enjoy this song and claimed Oldfield once went to a Quo gig. Next up was Bruce Springsteen with "Born To Run", followed by Muse's "Hysteria". He enthused about Muse (as usual) before talking about finding ELO long after they became big, then playing their "Can't Get It Out Of My Head".

Next up were The Eagles with "The Last Resort" and he recalled how painful it was seeing them live in Wembley in 1979 as they were just so good, but a recent appearance on the CMT music awards left him less impressed. He then played "Heat Of The Moment" by Asia (which he said was great even though it speeds up as the song goes on) and "Show Me The Way" by Peter Frampton (bringing back memories of Francis being the runner up to Frampton in the "Face of 1968" competition). Next up were The Pretty Things with "Rosalyn", who he described as being very very hip at the time, and then for the penultimate track, The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band with "The Intro And The Outro". Expressing his love for Tom Petty again, Francis closed the show by spinning "I Won't Back Down".

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12th - Quo concert at Zenith, Nancy, France

The penultimate show of the short French tour took place in Nancy on April 12th. A fairly quiet audience of some 1500 or so witnessed the usual set and a set of good quality fan photos can be found here.

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17th - Francis Rossi show on Planet Rock radio

Francis presented his seventh show on Planet Rock radio on April 17th. This show kicked off with a (long) track from a new blues player, Joe Bonamassa with the excellent "Sloe Gin". Francis then described the next band as making Rhino "touch himself", Free with "My Brother Jake", before launching into Queen's classic "Seven Seas of Rhye" and he said that he was really looking forward to the Freddie movie. Next up, The Move with "I Can Hear The Grass Grow" who Francis talked about meeting at Sheffield City Hall and playing cards with. He also mentioned that Roy Wood told him recently that he had felt very intimidated while being a member of The Move. Francis also revealed how his son Flynn ended up being on Quo's cover of "I Can Hear The Grass Grow".

Next up were The Small Faces with "Whatcha Gonna Do About It" who Francis said he was introduced to by his father through the ice cream business and that he met the band a few times. Humble Pie were next with "Natural Born Woman" and then "Arc Of A Diver" by Steve Winwood. Introducing the Foo Fighters by saying both he and Rick think they're "brill", he played "Times Like These" before "Owner Of A Lonely Heart" by Yes. Another ramble about Hendrix and "Pictures Of Matchstick Men" ensued before playing his classic "Hey Joe" and "Pictures Of Matchstick Men" back to back for the purposes of comparison!

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20th - Announcement of "Quid Pro Quo" release

The following announcement about the forthcoming album release appeared on the official Quo website on April 20th.

"Quo are delighted to announce that their brand new studio album "Quid Pro Quo" will be released exclusively in the UK through Tesco Entertainment on 30th May 2011 and in Europe and the rest of the world through earMUSIC/Edel on 27th May 2011.

The album has 14 brand new tracks plus the 2010 version of "In The Army Now" and is packaged with a second disc the "Official Bootleg - Greatest Hits Live" making this serious value for money. The "Official Bootleg" was recorded in Amsterdam and Melbourne last year and offers 10 classic hits specially re-mixed by Gregg Jackman.

The album will also be available as a limited run of 1000 deluxe box sets comprising a vinyl album in a gatefold sleeve, the 2xCD version featuring special artwork and 2 extra live tracks, a Quo poster, individually numbered "Quo Quid" banknote, a T-shirt and a set of badges (unavailable elsewhere). The deluxe box sets will retail at 50 and will be available worldwide, with only 500 available exclusively from this site -

The 14 new tracks on "Quid Pro Quo" were produced by Francis Rossi and Mike Paxman, the 2010 version of "In The Army Now" was produced by Pip Williams.

In the UK the album will only be available in-store at Tesco, and online at as a CD or MP3 download. In Europe/Rest Of World the album will be available at usual online and offline retailers through earMUSIC/Edel -

In a first for Quo, the website also offered a free download of the track "Rock 'n' Roll 'n' You" over a month before the official album release, well done Quo!

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24th - Francis Rossi show on Planet Rock radio

Francis presented his eighth show on Planet Rock radio on April 24th. The show opened with "Aqualung" from Jethro Tull and Francis recalled how he met Bob Young on the Gene Pitney tour and they scored him as a roadie after offering him five pounds more than Jethro Tull. He then talked fondly about Phil Lynott and meeting his mum again at a recent Dublin gig, before playing Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak". Next up was Rory Gallagher's Taste with "What's Going On" before "Shiny Happy People" by REM. Joe Walsh's "Life's Been Good" came next and he recalled his Eagles live experience from 1979 again, before Van Halen with "Jump" (with the "naff" synth!).

A rare airing of the original version of "Speechless" (by Ian Hunter), as covered on Quo's "In The Army Now" album, came next. Francis said he loved the band and that Bowie had been a huge influence on Mott The Hoople. Another song covered by Quo was next up, in the shape of Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band with "Get Out Of Denver" and Francis confessed that "we could have killed people and ourselves" during the Quo covers album period. Playing this song reminded Francis of a Brighton gig around that period when Rick and Rhino had a big night and struggled with the song the next night, both suffering from the NIPS (Non-Improving Parfitt Syndrome)! The Beatles got their regular airing next with "Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds" before heading into Supertramp's "Logical Song". Francis described Hodgson's voice as being incredible before the final song, The Cure's "Friday I'm In Love" (he said he never knew much about the band but this song was "one of the best things ever").

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