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That was the Quo month that was ... August 2006

4th - Quo concert at Dzintara concert hall, Jurmala, Latvia

Quo paid a rare visit to Latvia on August 4th, to play in Jurmala (about 30 km from Riga). The venue was inside a public garden and Quo took the stage at 8.30, about half an hour after their scheduled start time. They played the usual Summer festival set, hampered slightly by a few technical glitches.

Photos of Quo's show can be found here.

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6th - Quo concert at Haapsalu Castle, Haapsalu, Estonia

Continuing their mini-tour of unusual locations, Quo hit Estonia on August 6th. A crowd of about 8000 crammed into the ramparts of the Episcopal castle in Haapsalu and witnessed Quo performing the usual set on a stage built next to a medieval tower! Support came from two local Estonian outfits before Quo took over at 10pm.

Photos of Quo's show can be found here.

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11th - Quo article in Birmingham Mail

The following article, entitled "Quo ready for the silver screen" and written by Andy Coleman, appeared in the Birmingham Mail on August 11th.

"STATUS Quo have been bitten by the acting bug after appearing in Coronation Street. The band's frontmen, Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt, enjoyed the experience so much they plan to star in their own movie.

The duo have teamed up with Coronation Street's stunt co-ordinator to work on an action thriller, Care Factor Zero. Set in Bangkok, the story will see Francis and Rick, playing themselves, caught up in gang warfare. The soundtrack will consist of a new set of Quo songs and guest stars approached to appear in it include Vinnie Jones and Joanna Lumley.

Rick says the Coronation Street experience has fired up his enthusiasm for the big screen. "We had five days on the set and it was marvellous. The highlight for me was beating up Les Battersby. Once it had all been edited it looked like I'd really hit him.

"But it's not my first acting experience. I went to stage school when I was 12 years old. The movie, which has a £3 million budget, will be quite heavy - it won't be anything like the Spice Girls film."

The Coronation Street episodes, shown last year, were supposed to be the highlight of Quo's 40th anniversary celebrations but 2005 ended on a sad note for the band.

Their UK tour was cancelled when Rick was told he may have cancer. Thankfully, he got the all-clear and Quo resumed their UK shows with a barnstorming gig at the NEC in May which was filmed for a DVD.

They are back at the NEC on December 9 for their traditional pre-Christmas gig but more immediate is this Sunday's headliner at Burntwood Wakes Festival. "Playing outdoor shows in Britain in the summer is fantastic," Rick enthuses. "Over the past few years we've played in some great settings and the fans bring a bottle of wine and have a picnic."

Their latest album, The Party Ain't Over Yet, is still being promoted by the group but they are already thinking about songs for the movie and the next release. And there could be some surprises from Rick who admits to using an unusual instrument to pen his contributions.

"I'm picking out tunes on a ukelele," he reveals. He counters suggestions that a George Formby-style boogie could be on the agenda. "There are some very beautiful tunes to be found on a ukelele. And because it's such a small instrument I can carry it anywhere."

This Sunday Status Quo play The Burntwood Wakes Festival, Burntwood RUFC and The NEC Arena on December 9."

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11th - Rossi quotes in The Guardian (UK)

The following quotes from Francis appeared in the UK's Guardian newspaper in August 11th, in an article about the highs and lows of the rock and roll touring lifestyle.

Know your limits - "I gave up drinking and coke in '98. It came to a head one night when I was planning a toot the night before a day off, so it wouldn't affect the show. I had it all planned: cornflakes, watch the news, get stuck into the coke. When I got to it, I thought, 'No, I'll do it next time.' Because I never actually said 'Stop' I didn't touch it again for years. Then in Amsterdam somebody I knew in a restaurant gave me some and I couldn't say, 'I don't do that any more.' I gave most of it away but had a little sniff off a plectrum. I went running down the stairs to meet the wife and kids, got halfway and my teeth started grinding. I had to run into the bar and have a tequila to take the edge off. I thought, 'That's it, no more.'"

Keep smiling and don't moan - "You learn very quickly there's no point moaning. We have an expression, 'I do believe this was your chosen profession.' It's our way of saying, 'Shut the fuck up, you could be driving an ice-cream van.'"

Play gigs, not rehearsals - "We do 125 gigs a year and one of the reasons we work so much is because we know if we don't play for two weeks we've got to bloody rehearse - and we've always hated rehearsals. If you do that many gigs the machine keeps nicely oiled, whereas the longer you stop the more it feels like putting a whole new bloody engine in."

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13th - Quo concert at Burntwood RFUC, Chasewater, Burntwood

August 13th proved unlucky for some, with a showery day welcoming the Quo entourage to Burntwood for them to headline the Burntwood Wakes Festival. This new event went very well and provided a good variety of music for the fans to enjoy. First up were Eagles tribute act, Talon, who did a fine job of the well-known Eagles favourites, before the well-known Rolling Stones tribute, The Counterfeit Stones took the stage and impressed the crowd with their accuracy.

It would be 6.45 before Quo took the main stage and they hammered out their usual festival set to the 3-4000 strong Midlands crowd.

Photos of Quo's show can be found here, here, and here.

The following review by Andy Coleman appeared in the Birmingham Mail on August 14th.

"BRAVO to the brains behind the Burntwood Wakes Festival for persuading Britain's best boogie band to headline last night's rock 'n' roll spectacular.

The rest of the bill included tributes, Counterfeit Stones and Talon (The Eagles), but Status Quo were the real deal.

And, true to their track record when it comes to playing outdoor shows in the Midlands, it was cold and wet. Not as wet as Warwick Castle in 2001 or as cold as Ragley Hall in 2004, but temperatures on the rugby club pitch were soon raised with a blistering 90 minutes of 12-bar boogie.

The crowd of between 3,000 and 4,000 may have been smaller than Quo are used to playing for at their annual NEC gig but they never gave less than 100 per cent.

After guitarist/singer Rick Parfitt's recent throat problems he left more songs for Francis Rossi to lead.

And though the wet stuff started to come down an hour into the set - during Down Down - it failed to dampen the spirits of a crowd who left on a high.

Now we only have to wait till December 9 for the NEC gig."

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19th - Quo concert at Town Square, Linz, Austria

Quo played a free open-air concert in the main town square in Linz, Austria, on August 19th. The weekend of events was a huge success with in excess of 30000 attending the Quo show. Supported by boyband "US 5", Elvis-style crooner Ty Tender and local act Bluatschink, Quo played their usual Summer festival set. Photos of this beautifully-located gig can be found here.

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20th - Quo concert at Schwarzlteich, Graz, Austria

As part of a festival with headliners Toto, Quo performed in Graz, Austria, on August 20th. Support acts Mauf and She Says got through their sets without problems, but a heavy storm was brewing all day. As Quo took the stage, the storm whipped up and heavy rain was soon lashing the stage, easily finding its way onto electrical equipment via flimsy protection particularly at the rear of the stage. Four songs into the set, Francis received an electric shock as the result of the zealous rain and Quo left the stage, never to re-appear. Some confusion reigned, especially as Toto later took the stage to perform their headlining set. It turned out that Toto's equipment was safely stored off-stage and had not got wet, with the storm abating in time for them to complete their performance. An announcement was made that Quo would re-schedule a show in Graz to make up for the abandonment of this show.

Photos from this very short gig can be found here.

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26th - Quo concert at Pendennis Castle, Falmouth

Next stop on the Summer roadshow for Quo would be back on UK turf, in Cornwall with a gig at Pendennis Castle on August 26th. Supported by young act "My Elvis Blackout", Quo performed to a large crowd in this historic location. Excellent photos from this show are available here, here, and here.

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27th - Quo concert at Stansted House, Stansted Park, near Rowlands Castle

Originally scheduled at Portchester Castle, near Portsmouth, this August 27th show was moved to Stansted House due to staging issues. Lots of photos from this show are available here, here, and here.

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28th - Quo concert at Midsummer Magic, Lincoln Castle, Lincoln

In a now traditional excursion to Lincoln, Quo rounded off their UK stately home/castle tour with a sell-out show at Lincoln Castle on August 28th. Support was again provided by youngsters "My Elvis Blackout" who didn't handle a power failure very well and left the stage in a huff, never to return! (not that the Quo fans seemed to mind!). Lots of photos from this show are available here, here, and here.

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