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That was the Quo month that was ... May 2004



3rd - Wildhearts concert at Bristol Carling Academy

At this gig, the Wildhearts played "Down Down" and also the first verse & chorus of "Caroline"! It turns out Ginger (their lead) has a special affection for Quo, thanks to the track "Dirty Water". From the Wildhearts web site (Berlin report, February 19th): "Both this album and the Status Quo track "Dirty Water" have kept me grounded throughout a very emotional Xmas, spent in the Philippines, where my lady and I decided to split, only to fall even deeper in love than ever before. The sweet melody of "Dirty Water" is floating through my head as I turn away from Justin, and walk straight into Status Quo guitar player, Rick Parfitt ! As I tell him how inspirational the track has been to me recently, he seems quite taken aback. Thrown by the sudden reminder of a presumably semi-forgotten gem, he warmly thanks me and we clink glasses. Hey, look at this... I've got a beer and he's got a beer. I thought we were supposed to both be on the wagon?"

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19th - Interview with Nick Rossi on www.iccroydon.co.uk

The following interview with Nick Rossi, conducted by Ben Ashford and titled "Rossis are Rockin' but not in Quo's plimsolls", appeared on www.iccroydon.co.uk.

BROTHERS Nick and Kieran Rossi watched in awe as dad Francis rocked all over the world with his legendary guitar band Status Quo.

And now the pair, who grew up in Woodcote, Purley, are hoping to follow in his white-trainered footsteps and make their own mark on the music world.

Nick, 32, and 25-year-old Kieran are members of Little Egypt - a talented four-piece already making a mark on the local live scene.

And with the traditional guitar sound enjoying a renaissance in recent years in the form of bands like The Darkness, the boys are confident of signing a deal and climbing the charts.

Nick told the Croydon Post: "We've been offered a deal and we know a couple of companies are coming to see us this week. It's a little off-putting but we'll just treat it like another gig."

Little Egypt were founded by Nick and features fellow musicians Ik Ilangantileke, 25, and Gavin Smith, 32. They describe their sound as "tuneful rock 'n' roll" and Nick admits that Status Quo fans will recognise a "familiar tilt" to his voice.

But despite his dad's legendary status, he says his upbringing was decidedly "un-rock 'n' roll".

"I was kept away from the public," said Nick. "My dad was always conscious of keeping us away from the cameras.

"But having watched his success the dream seems much more achievable. I've been very lucky to have access to a recording studio and it's been great to have someone around to tell you what sounds good and bad."

With Status Quo celebrating their 40th anniversary next year, having amassed an incredible 58 British hit singles, Nick and Kieran say they would be happy with a just a couple of years in the limelight.

But as for the pony-tail and white plimsolls, that's one tradition that the boys will be happy to ditch. "A pair of tan brogues is probably more like it," he added.

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21st - Rhino's Revenge gig at The Half Moon, Putney

Rhino played his first of three solo gigs with his band "Rhino's Revenge" at the famous music pub, The Half Moon in Putney, on May 21st. Featuring Rhino on bass & vocals, Matt Letley on drums, Dave Goodes on guitars & vocals, and Mike Casswell also on guitars & vocals, the band played to a sold-out crowd at The Half Moon for about 90 minutes.

First up though, were support bands Mobster (the new band fronted by Steve Pipe, formerly lead vocalist with Hurricane Party) and Undesided, a young rock act whose lead singer is the brother of Matt from Busted. They served to warm up the crowd well and the Revenge show was very well-received.

Their show featured some new material, some classic Revenge tunes and a few covers along the way. Tonto was called upon as guitar tech for the evening and Matt Letley surprised everyone with a long-overdue display of his drum solo talent. The much-hyped presence of Rick Parfitt failed to eventuate (though he did sneak a peak at the soundcheck by all accounts), but everyone had a great time anyway and a happy Mike Paxman admired the show whilst lurking away from the limelight.

More information and photos can be found over at the RhinoSite.

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21st - Rhino article in Birmingham Evening Mail newspaper

A half-page article on Rhino's Revenge appeared in the Birmingham Evening Mail newspaper on Friday 21st May. Complete with photo of the band and written by Andy Coleman, the article - titled "Quo's Rhino is on the charge!" - is reproduced here.

Status Quo are one of the hardest working bands on the circuit but even when they are off the road bass player John 'Rhino' Edwards can't get enough of being on stage. "Quo have had around four months off we've only played 10 gigs this year, so I am getting really bored" says the 51 year old. "That's why I m playing a handful of gigs with my own band, Rhino's Revenge."

One of those dates is at Birmingham's Carling Academy tomorrow, and Rhino hints that there may be a surprise or two for fans. "Quo guitarist Rick Parfiit is really bored as well so he's said he will turn up for our London show. Who knows he may do some of the other dates as well..."

Whether or not Rick plays Birmingham, the Quo Army is guaranteed plenty of classic boogie numbers because the support band is tribute act 'State of Quo'.

"It'll be a real party, a great laugh," says Rhino. "I am told that State of Quo perform songs from the early years of the band, leaving me to play the Quo stuff Ive had a hand in writing. "I'll also be doing a few covers, tracks from my album and some new songs."

The debut album, Rhino's Revenge, was released three years ago and it allowed Rhino, a former member of Dexy's Midnight Runners and bands that backed Kim Wilde and Judie Tzuke, to tackle subjects that Status Quo would shy away from. Subjects like American Republicans, the dangers of out of control credit and school girl mums.

"I've had my fair share of knockers but the album sounds good and Im really proud of it," asserts Rhino. He has faced most criticism from hardcore Quo fans still miffed that he took the place of former bassist Alan Lancaster. "I remember first seeing Quo in a pub in 1972," recalls Rhino "I've been with the band since September 1985 and 99.9 per cent of the time it's been fantastic. Any criticism doesn't really bother me.

"I saw Alan Lancaster playing in a small Gothenburg club in 1994. Quo were performing at an ice rink nearby so Rick and I wandered round to watch his show. He played "Whatever You Want" and pretty much mucked it up." Things are set to get busy on the Quo front again soon. A European tour with Deep Purple and Cheap Trick will be followed by a headline appearance at Ragley Hall near Alcester on June 27th and Wicksteed Park, Kettering on August 29. Then they're back at the NEC for the traditional pre-Christmas show on December 1.

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22nd - Rhino's Revenge gig at Carling Academy 2, Birmingham

Andy Coleman followed up on his previous Rhino article in the Birmingham Evening Mail, with this short piece, titled "Letting his hair down".

"Status Quo bass player John 'Rhino' Edwards stepped from the shadows of Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt to take centrestage with his own band. For fans it was a chance to see Rhino, and Quo drummer Matt Letley, up close and personal. For Rhino it was the opportunity to let his hair down and have some fun.

To the disappointment of some that meant only one Quo song - Obstruction Day, the B-side of 1999's Twenty Wild Horses. But fortunately support band State of Quo, a superb tribute act, had already provided over an hour of Quo blues 'n' boogie from the band's early albums.

Rhino entertained with tracks from his Rhino's Revenge album, a new song "Secretary", and covered "Once Bitten Twice Shy" and "Roll Over Beethoven". His inexperience as a frontman was apparent when he forgot lyrics, fluffed lines and switched off his guitar mid song! He was quickly forgiven by the crowd.

And, besides, it was a refreshing change from seeing the well oiled machine that is the modern day Quo."

More information and photos can be found over at the RhinoSite.

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23rd - Rhino's Revenge gig at The Met Lounge, Peterborough

Good reviews and photos can be found both at the RhinoSite and also by clicking here.

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undated - Francis interviewed for TV2Weken magazine (Belgium)

Patrick Cusse interviewed Francis Rossi for a "Top of the Pops" related article in TV2Weken, a Flemish magazine. The full transcript of this excellent and revealing interview can be found here.

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