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That was the Quo month that was ... April 2016

2nd - Quo article in The Mirror (UK)

The following article, titled "Status Quo say tour will be their last because 'we don't want to croak on stage'" and written by Janine Yaqoob, appeared in The Mirror newspaper on 2nd April.

"Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt admit their years of hard living have taken their toll and have seen contemporaries Lemmy and David Bowie die in recent months.

They've been rocking all over the world for 50 years, but time could be up for Status Quo as they embark on their last tour.

Frontmen Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt admit they can no longer deliver the high-octane performances they became famous for as their ageing bodies give in.

Now enjoying the slower pace of life, the former hellraisers - who were known for their wild partying and drink and drug binges - look forward to taking it easy.

ďItís time to call it a day really and reflect on how wonderful itís all been,Ē said Rick, 67. ďI would rather stop it intact and in one piece.

"I donít want one of us croaking on stage. Itís time to get off this treadmill and put Quo to bed.

ďFrancis says he canít keep the physical side of it up and I know what he means. In the certain places on stage when we jump up in the air, these days we kind of look at one another and go ĎAre you gonna jump? Yes or no?í then we realise we shouldnít have done it.

"It gets to the stage when itís just old men leaping in the air.Ē

Francis, 66, agrees and told the Sunday People : ďItís the last electric tour. The fatigue gets to you - it takes its toll. It has to stop somewhere.Ē

The Rocking All Over The World duo have sold over 100million records around the world, notched up nearly sixty Top 40 hits ≠including two No1s, plus four chart-topping albums.

Tickets went on sale this week for what could be Status Quoís final tour. The Last Night Of The Electrics sees the band perform at 11 venues across the UK in December.

Francis admits heís doing it for one main reason - the money.

ďYes itís about the money. Iím not going to do it for free. Iíve got the trappings of life - the house, the lifestyle, getting the kids through uni. For me to give all that up would be a failure.

ďMost people think you earn all these millions but then thereís a divorce, cocaine, you drink, you buy a boat and Bentleys. They assume that money stays. Iíve had 8 kids who need help occasionally.Ē

Rick, who now lives in Marbella with his wife and two young children Tommy and Lily, 8, told the Sunday People he knows the tour will be a struggle.

ďItís quite a wrench this time as I havenít worked for five months. Iíve been at home and been that other bloke - dad and husband. Itís been lovely. Iíve settled into it nicely.Ē

Giving an insight into what tour life is like now - Rick says itís not very rock Ďní roll.

ďTouring these days itís not like people think it is - itís not all beer and skittles, everybody having a laugh and parties until 3am. It doesnít work like that anymore.

ďFrancis and I wonít go in hotels. We donít like them.

"Weíve got the bus covered - I have the front half of the top deck and Francis has the back. Weíve got our own little suites with our own duvets and pillows and 400 movies. Weíre very happy there. So itís bus, dressing room, stage. Thatís how it works.Ē

Despite working together for five decades, people may be surprised to hear that Rick and Francis donít see each other away from the stage.

And Rick says itís the key to Quo staying together for so long.

ďWe have a professional relationship. We come together to go on stage. Weíll meet up an hour or so before the gig in the dressing room but through the day we donít see much of one another.

ďPeople often ask us whatís the secret to being together all this time and I think thatís it. Give one another space - I donít crowd him and he doesnít crowd me.

ďWeíve been off for five months now - I havenít spoken or emailed him. Thereís nothing to talk about. Once we get back together all the stories come back out, weíll sit around over a cup of tea and have a laugh. Itís been like that for years. Itís not that we donít love one another, because we do. But itís just the way it works.Ē

With music contemporaries passing away - like David Bowie and Motorheadís Lemmy - the pair say they are conscious of their age.

ďIt always comes as a shock when people in the business that you know die,Ē said Rick.

ďI knew Bowie a bit and I knew Lemmy quite well. We used to go out quite a lot in the 70s and 80s. I saw Lemmy not so long ago and he didnít look well.

ďIím lucky to still be here. Iíve had car smashes, Iíve pushed my body to the absolute limit for 30-40 years and I canít believe how well I feel. Itís just not right somehow. It must be the Parfitt genes!Ē

Francis added: ďAll my mates are going.Ē

The rocker, who lives in Surrey, says he doesnít want to die slowly - and would instead choose to go to Dignitas, the Swiss group which helps those with illness to die.

ďI donít want to get to the next decade and then someoneís got to wipe my backside. I want to go quickly and in no pain. I would go to Dignitas.

ďIím in support of assisted suicide. Surely itís within our rights to terminate our life if we wish. I can not deal with someone having to feed me and do everything for me. Give me that tablet that makes me feel good and finish me off at the end.Ē

Rick had a quadruple bypass a couple of years ago after suffering 2 heart attacks - but says heís fitter than heís ever been.

ďIíve never felt better as I donít smoke or drink now. I had to have a reason to stop those vices. My doctor said ĎIf you want to see your next birthday and see your kids grow up then you need to stop.í That rung in my head. I havenít had a smoke or drink in 2 1/2 years. ď

With talk of a possible musical and Rick and Francis working on solo material itís unlikely this will be the last we see of Status Quo.

ďIf that doesnít work Iíll just retire and sit in the garden. Iíll do the crossword and have naps,Ē Francis said.

Rick added: ďItís been amazing. I wouldnít in my wildest dreams have thought we could achieve what we have.Ē

Revisit the April 2016 event list  

28th - Quo concert at Empress Ballroom, Blackpool

Quo's first gig of 2016 took place on 28th April at the beautiful Empress Ballroom on Blackpool. Keen fans were treated to harsh conditions as they queued in rain and hail, but they were rewarded with a good show. Support came from Strapped for Cash and the setlist contained no surprises, being exactly as it was for the pre-Christmas leg of the "Accept No Substitute" tour. Francis revealed that he'd undergone eye surgery during the break so he could see the setlist and crowd without glasses! His old green Tele made an appearance too, albeit following a refurbishment which now sees it in its natural wood colour rather than the battered green we've all come to know and love.

Revisit the April 2016 event list  

29th - "Raw Brit" play "12 Gold Bars" at The Caravan Club, Oakleigh, Melbourne (Australia)

Excellent Australian outfit Raw Brit gave their second performance of Quo's "12 Gold Bars" at the Caravan Club in Oakleigh on 29th April.

The lineup consisted of Mick Pealing (lead vocals, from Stars), Bob Spencer (guitar, from Skyhooks and The Angels), John Favaro (bass guitar, from The Badloves), Peter Maslen (drums, from Boom Crash Opera) and Scott Griffith (guitar). Unlike the first outing, the band played their general British classic rock set first this time, leaving the Quo set until after their break. This was a smart move and the packed house thoroughly enjoyed this band's fine attempt at reproducing the Quo sound (albeit really being "11 Gold Bars" as they leave out the lighter "Living On An Island"). Bob Spencer on guitar was a standout again, putting in an enormous effort and committing to the music physically as much as anyone in Quo does. As the only way to here live Quo music in Australia right now, Raw Brit are assured good crowds, so roll on the next one!

Revisit the April 2016 event list