After a 28 hour bus trip from Melbourne to Brisbane on Friday 3rd October, five Victorians (if you include me!) descended on the Carindale Hotel in the Brisbane suburb of Carindale at about 12 o'clock on Saturday 4th. A few people had already arrived and the committee were busy getting everything organised and registering the fans as they arrived.
By the time of the formal opening at 1pm, everyone had arrived and the mood was good amongst the small but enthusiastic crowd of about 30. The afternoon was filled with the usual convention things - getting to know new fans, meeting fellow list members (hi Patrick!), enjoying the Quo music and exercising the grey matter with a few quizzes. Things started well for me, winning the "on the door" raffle, my prize a very nice signed copy of "Don't Stop", but signed by the Beach Boys rather than Quo. A third place in the next general Quo quiz, then a joint winner of the lyric quiz. Maybe I had a little bit of an advantage coming from the UK.....
What everyone had waited for was the taped message from the band, and we weren't to be disappointed. Similarly to last year's message, it was filmed during Quo rehearsals at Francis' house. It started with some live rehearsing of a few songs, including lots of close-ups of Jeff's freshly-shaven head !! Later, the band went into the garden for a game of footy before settling down to tell us their plans for the next few months, including of course their promise of a 98 Australian tour (which went down quite well!). About 10 minutes in total, the message was Quo at their most relaxed and it was a great chance to see such "fly on the wall" footage.
After a very swish evening meal, the lights went down and the partying could start. Air guitars at the ready, midnight soon rolled around and the band of merry folk dispersed after a very enjoyable day. The organisation of the event must be commended and, while the attendance was low, everyone I spoke to had a good time. Once again, I was something of a novelty, even being interviewed by a local reporter for a Brisbane newspaper !!Revisit the October 1997 event list
The following review comes courtesy of Rick Norman.
The interview is over two large pages and includes three large pictures of Rick relaxing with his gorgeous girlfriend Laura McNeil. The interview was conducted at Henlow Grange health farm.
It starts by stating that Rick is about to commence a schedule that a man half his age would blanch at, never mind a 48 year old who suffered an agonizing angina attack on May 1st !! It confirms the release of "Whatever You Want" and the tour of the UK to be followed by tours of Japan, Australia, USA and South America prior to the late summer release of Quo's latest studio album.
Rick says he's mighty gad to still be here, and joked that Rossi was probably thinking of the album sales going through the roof if he had popped it!
Rick saw a different side to Rossi during his time in hospital, and also received sackfulls of letters and cards from all over the world, he says he's never seen himself as a rock star, just the blond bloke from Status Quo !
He also says he's not turned to the church and that the illness has not made him more caring to the people close to him, as he has always been caring to people close to him anyway !
He doesn't regret his lifestyle up to his angina attack and he has no intention of becoming a saint, although he doesn't do drugs anymore and he's cut down on the booze and fags.
He doesn't intend to move to the countryside and settle down as he has an apartment in Teddington (London) overlooking the Thames, and has the best of both worlds, 15 mins form the countryside, 15 mins from the town.
Rick is also asked about his memories of the Princess of Wales, and the loss of his own daughter Heidi.
Rick also says he has no intention of getting married a third time or RETIRING !!!Revisit the October 1997 event list
The latest in the long line of Quo compilations was released on October 13th, the "Whatever You Want" double CD (or cassette) set charting Quo's amazing record of hits with 41 tracks. The inlay is introduced by Simon Porter and contains some nice pictures covering the entire spectrum of Quo's career. The inlay also features a full list of the UK December tour dates.
Released on PolygramTV (backed with a huge advertising campaign), the CD set has catalogue number 553-507-2, while the cassette version has number 553-507-4.
The first CD contains the following tracks: Pictures of Matchstick Men, Ice In The Sun, Down The Dustpipe, In My Chair, Paper Plane, Mean Girl, Caroline, Break The Rules, Down Down, Roll Over Lay Down, Rain, Mystery Song, Wild Side of Life, Rockin' All Over The World, Again and Again, Whatever You Want, Living On An Island, What You're Proposin', Lies, Don't Drive My Car, Something 'Bout You Baby I Like.
The second CD features: Rock 'n' Roll, Dear John, Ol' Rag Blues, A Mess of the Blues, Marguerita Time, Going Down Town Tonight, The Wanderer, Rollin' Home, Red Sky, In The Army Now, Dreamin', Ain't Complaining, Burning Bridges, Anniversary Waltz Part 1, Anniversary Waltz Part 2, I Didn't Mean It, When You Walk In The Room, Fun Fun Fun, Don't Stop, All Around My Hat.Revisit the October 1997 event list
I went to the filming of the Jack Docherty Show for Channel 5 last night (15/10/97) at the Whitehall Theatre, London. Arrived about 4.45 and met Francis and Rick as they entered through the rear entrance of the theatre. A good crowd of autograph and photograph hunters had gathered and they got through everyone after about 5 minutes. The recording of the show itself started at just after 6pm, scheduled guests for that evening's programme were Rossi and Parfitt, Billy Joel and Louise Weener from Sleeper.
Francis and Rick were first up (surprisingly) and did one of the all time great Quo interviews. Free of the shackles of pre-watershed TV, the interview conformed to none of the standard stuff and, love him or loathe him, Jack Docherty does ask some unusual questions. We got the first (?) TV kiss between the guys and some very funny one liners from both of them. The front row of the audience were all familiar Quo people and I met Matthew Bradshaw from the list. Unfortunately, when it went out on TV, the camera just fails to pan across to us, but never mind. The interview lasted close on 20 minutes and, as it was so good, they decided to leave it uncut and relegate Louise to today's (16/10) show !!
Billy Joel was next, he was OK and lightened up as the interview progressed. They also did the Louise Weener interview being as she was there but it didn't go out. She seemed to be trying hard to be controversial and failing miserably.Revisit the October 1997 event list
The following comes from The Sun newspaper on October 15th.
Here's "Only Fools And Horses" star Nicholas Lyndhurst frocking all over the world with Status Quo. The comedy actor appears with rockers Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt in the latest of his hilarious series of telly adverts for high street store WHSmith. In the new ad Nicholas, 35-Del Boy's nit-witted brother Rodney in Only Fools - repeats his role as a frumpy mum.
Viewers will see him buying a copy of the band's new album "Whatever You Want: The Verv Best Of Status Quo" in a shop. As "she" leaves the store she spots two buskers, Rossi and Parfitt, strumming Quo's hit "Rockin' All Over The World" - but doesn't recognise them. Thinking they are a pair of desperate old musicians trying to earn a few quid, she chucks them some loose change.
Rick, 49, remarks: "Funny Woman." Francis adds, "Nice legs, though!"
Francis, 48, says of the ad: "It was a real laugh to do although I did begin to get worried by Nick's convincing performance as a woman. I was even more concerned when I realised I rather fancied her! We had a lot of fun working with Nicholas. He had a great sense of humour - even when we were taking the mickey."
Francis adds: "We turned up for the shoot with our nicely-pressed shirts and jeans, only for the wardrobe people to literally jump up and down on them. We'd forgotten that we were supposed to be down-and-out buskers."Revisit the October 1997 event list