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That was the Quo month that was ... June 2013



1st - Quo concert at Retropop festival, Emmen, Netherlands

Quo kicked off the month with a show at the big Dutch Retropop festival in Emmen on 1st June. There were no setlist surprises but Leon Cave threw in a drum solo, to the delight of the Quo fans in the crowd. Official photos of Quo in action at the festival can be seen here.

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3rd - Bula Quo album launch at Planet Hollywood, Duisburg, Germany

While in Germany, Rick and Francis made a promotional appearance at Planet Hollywood in Duisburg on 3rd June. The appearance was basically an album launch for "Bula Quo" with a decent contingent of German press and media on hand.

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6th - Quo concert at Sweden Rock Festival, Solvesborg, Sweden

Quo played at the massive Sweden Rock Festival on 6th June. The usual festival setlist was played to an audience of about 12000. Rick and Francis gave a five-minute press conference before their performance too, which is available on YouTube, in which they talked about the Frantic Four tour, the Lincoln Festival in 1972, Live Aid, the Bula Quo movie, and their amazing statistics.

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8th - Quo concert at Haze over Haarum Festival, Harboøre, Denmark

Quo played at the popular Haze over Haarum Festival on 8th June. Fine weather ensured a good crowd and some good photos of Quo are included on the festival's photo roll.

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10th - Release of "Bula Quo!" soundtrack

The "Bula Quo!" movie soundtrack was released as a double CD set on 10th June. The first CD features nine new songs, written and recorded specially for Bula Quo, while the second CD is a compilation of re-recorded classics and live tracks (all of which had been available previously). The CD is released via Fourth Chord Records / Warner Artist & Label Services / earMusic/Edel with catalogue number QUOCD007.

A limited edition box set was also released on the same day - it contained 2-CD edition of Bula Quo!, plus an exclusive gatefold vinyl LP, 7" vinyl single, collector's flight ticket (individually-numbered certificate of authentication), a set of glossy postcards and full-colour poster.

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11th - Rick and Francis interviewed on The One Show (BBC1, UK)

Alex, Rick, Francis and Matt on The One Show Rick and Francis took up spots on the couch of The One Show on BBC1 on 11th June. Presented by Matt Baker and Alex Jones, the pair sat through a couple of different stories and were then interviewed about "Bula Quo!" (including Rick detailing his hair loss dramas through the movie's filming in Fiji). They also briefly discussed the Frantic Four shows and showed a teaser clip from the Wembley DVD, before closing with a brief chat about the "Hello Quo" doco.

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13th - Rick and Francis interviewed on Steve Wright In The Afternoon (BBC Radio 2, UK)

Rick and Francis at Radio 2 Rick and Francis were interviewed by their old Radio 2 DJ mate Steve Wright on 13th June as part of his popular afternoon show. The main part of the interview focused on "Bula Quo" of course with a good chat about the soundtrack songs. They finished off by talking about their touring commitments for the rest of 2013.

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14th - Rick and Francis interviewed on Planet Rock

Francis and Rick were interviewed by Paul Anthony and answered questions from fans on Planet Rock on 14th June. They discussed the 'Hello Quo' documentary, the Frantic Four reunion, and the Bula Quo movie. The interview is available here and the video of them answering fan questions is on YouTube.

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18th - Francis article in The Age newspaper (Melbourne, Australia)

The following article, titled "Millions up nose but rocker still rolling in it" and written by Nick McGrath, appeared in Melbourne's The Age newspaper on 18th June.

"Francis Rossi, star of the recent Coles ads, talks about success and excess – and how both have shaped the course of his life."

How did your childhood experience influence your attitude to money? My father was self-employed, and all of my family were retailers, making and selling ice cream, so we learnt the value of money early – that you had to go and earn it. I was brought up to believe in the concept of capitalism.

Are you a spender or saver? I am a Gemini, so I'm half-and-half. I'm not stupid with money but I'll spend it if I have to. I don't mind putting my hand in my pocket, but I can't deal with tight-fisted people.

Can you remember your first job and how much your first pay packet was? My first job was working in LT Harrison's opticians on Bromley High Street, grinding the lenses down, for which I got £2.50 a week, but even then I was very much focused on the band. I was never going to do that forever, as the time went painfully slowly doing that job, so it helped inspire me to get the band up and running.

What was your first paid performing work? The first paid gig we did was in a working men's club in Dulwich, and people passed a hat around and we shared the money, which was about two-and-a-half quid the first time. Then by about 1965 we did our first Butlins show and got 25 quid a week, which was outrageous money in those days. The first record deal was in about 1966, but there were no big advances in those days, and until we made it big in the '70s all we got was half a per cent of any retail sales – literally 5p out of every pound, which was daylight robbery. But that's the deal a lot of bands were on at that time.

How did things changes financially when the hits started coming? By about 1972, cheques for 40 grand and 80 grand were coming in all over the place, which I know doesn't sound a lot by today's standards. And that continued right through to the mid-'80s.

Your current wealth has been reported at anywhere between £2 million and £10 million. What's closer to the truth? It's probably somewhere around there, yeah.

Closer to £10 million or £2 million, then? No comment [smiles].

So £10 million then? [Even wider smile] Whichever way you put it, it's still not enough, as the decimal places just keep moving to the right, don't they?

So you'd say someone worth £10 million is not fabulously wealthy? Not compared with the billions that people like Roman Abramovich talk about. I couldn't afford his snot, could I? Let's just say the numbers – and that income is made up of back-catalogue sales and songwriting royalty sales – we make are bigger than they ever used to be, and if I'd had those sort of numbers when I was 21, I would have been a rich man, but that decimal point hasn't stopped moving.

Who controls the finances in your house? My wife. I don't deal with the money at all; I just spend it if I need to spend it. I never pay the bills or [for] the shopping or anything like that. As soon as I got married I basically handed that to the lady of the house, who looks after the house with the accountants. All that stuff is not my department. My department is to earn it. I'm a very uneducated boy, I failed the 11-plus, failed everything. So it's all about trying to improve oneself in this capitalist society and the way to improve yourself in this capitalist society is to earn money.

Financially, how much of a challenge has it been providing for your eight children? It's only in the last few years I've actually thought about it, and they cost a f---ing fortune, and that's not going to go away. One of my daughters is at university, training to be a vet or a veterinary nurse. I've got another in uni and one that's finishing school, and they've been privately educated. I didn't necessarily want to do that, but my wife is very much into their education. I'm not sure I'm comfortable with the idea of paying for education.

Does money make you happy? I was going to say no, but I was going to say yes at the same time. There are times when I'm extremely unhappy, down, depressed and whatever else, and money cannot protect you from that. I do have moments when I think "What are we all doing chasing our a--- around for wages, working like crazy?" What's the point?

What does money buy you? Anything I need. Or anything I want – even worse.

Did you develop extravagant spending habits when the millions starting pouring in? I had a couple of Porsches, a couple of Range Rovers, and I've been known to buy quite a lot of the same thing if I particularly like something. I was in Germany last year and I bought 19 of the same shirt, just because I liked them – and I didn't ask how much they cost. I like to be able to do that, but it is tempered with carefulness. Rick Parfitt [Francis' Status Quo bandmate] is worse. He's terrible. He's got boats, planes; he's had everything. I'm not as flamboyant or as wasteful as that.

At the height of the band's well-documented hedonism, how much money did you spend on drugs? I used to spend £1200 a week on cocaine, which again doesn't sound like much now!

At 1985 values that's £3252 a week, £169,104 a year or £1.69 million ($2.78 million) for the whole decade. Do those figures make your heart sink, or was it all part of the rock 'n' roll fun? No, I don't see it as part of the fun at all. I've got a hole in my nose. I really wish I hadn't become a coke addict or a drinker – I don't like either.

Do you give to charity? Why the f--- have we got charity? What the f--- is wrong with the world that we need to do that? I do give to charity – I do some work with the Prince's Trust and Nordoff Robbins – but I'm aware that it's never bad publicity for showbiz people to talk about the charity work they do, so I don't like to.

Do you tip generously? I like to tip where it makes a difference, and I used to give this Chinese guy who'd carry our luggage at the Midland Hotel in Manchester £50 or £100, and his wife came up to me one day and said, "Thank you so much Mr Rossi, that money really, really does make a difference to us." It was a lovely thing for her to say, as it was exactly the reason I had done it. If someone takes 50 quid and goes, "Yeah, so what?", that's no fun. There's no joy in it.

Do you bank online? No, the wife does a little bit and I'm not sure about all that. I'm a bit of a conspiracy theorist, so I worry about identity fraud to be honest.

Do you prefer to pay by card, cash or cheque? Cards always, and I always pay them off every month so the banks are not really interested in me. I don't want to know: I'm not paying any interest. They're interested in the schmucks that let the debt mount up. That's how they get you.

Do you have a pension? I've had so many pensions. I do have a new one which started about 10 or 15 years ago, which still seems to be doing all right. But everything else I've ever had has gone under, failed, not worth the money. When I was 18 or 19, not long been married, this guy who later became our manager, he got on to me and said, "You need this policy, it's a few shillings a week and when you're 45 it'll be worth 80 grand." When it matured it helped clear one of my overdrafts. These things are never going to be worth what people say they are when they mature. So everything I've gone through has lost its money.

Do you have any investments? I've wandered into quite a few people's fields over the years and the band have invested in all sorts – the band has a limousine company and we have a private jet company. All that went pear-shaped.

How much have you lost? Millions, but I feel all right about it because I am doing all right. I am still working, people are still interested.

What's the current biggest drain on your finances? Apart from Status Quo? Children. Children's education. Or children generally.

What do you like least about dealing with money? There's never enough.

What are your financial plans for the future? Every time I plan for the future, it does something else. So I kind of keep my head down and hope. I'm just planning to carry on until I drop, as I don't know what would happen if I didn't."

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22nd - Quo concert at The Venue, Derry, Londonderry, Northern Ireland

Quo headed to Northern Ireland for a gig in Derry on 22nd June. Supported by Sandstone and local act Triggerman, the band were very well received during their familiar set. The previous evening, Rhino joined a local Quo tribute band, The Matchstickmen, to perform "Paper Plane"! Leon Cave also attended their gig and the story made the BBC news, with an interview with the delighted band members being available here.

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24th - Lyndsay Parfitt article in the Daily Mail (UK)

Thew following article about Rick's wife, Lyndsay, appeared in the UK's Daily Mail newspaper on 24th June, entitled "Did IVF give Quo star's wife cancer? Lyndsay Parfitt speaks of her fear after four tumours are discovered".

"After two life-threatening ectopic pregnancies and two miscarriages, Lyndsay Parfitt feared she would never conceive naturally. Having waited until she was almost 50 to embark on motherhood she and Status Quo frontman husband Rick turned to IVF. The multi-millionaire and his wife were overjoyed to discover it had worked and Mrs Parfitt gave birth to twins Tommy and Lily Rose five years ago.

But Parfitt’s third wife has now been left to wonder if her IVF treatment is to blame for the breast cancer battle she now faces. Now 54 she recently discovered that a cyst she thought was harmless was in fact four tumours. She recently had a lumpectomy to remove the growths followed by a three-week course of radiotherapy and is now on a five year course of hormone treatment.

But Mrs Parfitt said yesterday: ‘The cancer I got is fuelled by oestrogen, which is why I have to take the hormones. Having the kids late in life has delayed my menopause. There’s a school of thought that suggests this could be a link to breast cancer. But who knows?’

‘I was very lucky because the cancer hadn’t spread to the lymph nodes and the surgeon is hopeful it has been caught in time.

‘I had the operation on the same day the news about Angelina Jolie [having a preventative double mastectomy] broke. ‘Now I have a scar around the side of my right breast and under my arm where they took a lymph node.’ Parfitt, 64, who has two sons, Richard, 39, and Harry 23 – from his two previous marriages (he also had a daughter, Heidi, who drowned in 1980 aged two) has often credited his third wife for turning his life around and has described their relationship as the ‘big love story’.

Before meeting Lyndsay in his local gym, he was by his own admission, on a downward spiral, depressed and drinking half a bottle of vodka a day.Living alone in his riverside apartment he spent most days slumped in front of the television until he decided to take his Auntie Dot’s advice and ask Lyndsey out. They married in 2008 and live in a luxury villa in Marbella, Spain. Parfitt himself has struggled with his health undergoing a quadruple heart bypass in 1997, throat surgery December 2005 and a heart attack in December 2011.

Mrs Parfitt said the health scare had made her wonder whether she was right to have children so late. She told Hello!: ‘When you have a scare like this you feel your age and vulnerability. Then again, if it wasn’t for the kids I may have gone off the rails.’

There have been rumours that their marriage is in trouble but Mrs Parfitt dismissed the rumours explaining: ‘Rick is often away on tour for six months so it can be a strain.

‘He’d love to slow down but being with the band runs in his blood. He’s like a caged animal when he’s here too long. ‘ And she expressed her regret that she had left it so long to be checked out given that she first discovered a lump in her right breast more than two years ago.

Although she had a scan that revealed it was a cyst she failed to go for a follow up six month appointment which would more than likely have revealed it was cancer.

Instead dismissing it as nothing to worry about as she did not have a history of breast cancer in her family, it was not until the lump changed shape that she was prompted to seek further advice. She said she hoped other women would learn from her mistake. She said: ‘By not acting on a follow-up check I was being even more selfish to my family. I’m not asking for sympathy. I don’t smoke or drink much. I eat well and try to keep fit but I didn’t follow up with medical advice to get another check-up.

‘From now on it’s onwards and upwards. I still have big swings of emotion and get overwhelming feelings of anxiety about the forthcoming treatment.

‘But the prognosis is good. My children are my inspiration’ "

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26th - Francis and Rick interview on Daybreak (ITV, UK)

Rick and Francis appeared on the Daybreak morning TV show on 26th June. They were interviewed by Lorraine Kelly and Aled Jones, with the main topic being Bula Quo, as well as brief mention of Lyndsay's recent health scare.

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29th - Francis and Rick interview on The Danny Baker Show (Radio 5 Live)

Francis and Rick appeared on Danny Baker's popular radio show on Radio 5 on 29th June. They kicked off a long intreview by talking about the origin of the name Status Quo before moving onto "Bula Quo". They talked about how the film came about and then the actual process of filming it. Danny was interested in the secrets of their longevity and then discussed the old Rossi ice cream business connection. Early family memories for both Francis and Rick were recalled, then they talked about the band's largest and smallest audiences. Surprisingly, they talked about the possibility of doing an acoustic album and tour, maybe even with an orchestra! During the interview, Danny played "Pictures of Matchstick Men", "Ice In The Sun", "Whatever You Want", "Bula Bula Quo" and "Break The Rules".

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30th - Francis and Rick interview on Madeley on Sunday (BBC Radio 2)

Richard, Francis and Rick in the studio Francis and Rick were interviewed by Richard Madeley on Radio 2 on 30th June. They started off talking about the Rolling Stones and their performance at the weekend's Glastonbury Festival, before talking about their attitude to live gigs. Rick's health was a short topic of conversation before Richard played "Looking Out For Caroline" as a segue for talking about the "Bula Quo" movie. They rounded out the interview with a discussion about their longevity.

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undated - Quo reach 100 single releases

With the release of the "Bula Bula Quo" single, Quo reached the milestone of releasing 100 singles (much to their own surpise it seems!). The full list of single releases can be found here and the following press release appeared on the official Quo website.

"The world knows that Quo have had a longer career than almost any other band ever, but who would have thought that would get to 100? The band's new single 'Bula Bula Quo' is their 100th in an incredible series that began with ‘Pictures of Matchstick Men’ back in 1968.

Francis said, "One hundred singles seems incredible even to me, and I recorded them all! When we started out, we would have been happy to survive a couple of years in this business so to reach this milestone is unbelievable."

Rick Parfitt added, "We always joke that you’d get less time for murder but, in all honesty, we’d like to thank all the Quo fans all over the world who have sustained us on what has been an amazing ride."

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