I went to my first Standing Quo gig in December 1986, in Whitley Bay, on Tyneside, at an outdated ice rink. I used to be 14. My dad mentioned it was silly, so my grandad took me. He was virtually deaf anyway, so it didn’t hassle him. After that, I used to be hooked.
I don’t drink, I don’t smoke, I’ve by no means touched medication. My habit is seeing Standing Quo. They’ve been on the go for 55 years they usually’ve just about by no means stopped touring. They are surely – excuse the pun – all the time rocking everywhere in the world.
I’ve by no means left the UK, sadly, due to medical issues – I’ve epilepsy and generally have seizures – so I’ve solely ever rocked round Britain. The farthest south I’ve been to see them is Cornwall; the farthest north is Aberdeen. The venue I’ve been to probably the most might be Metropolis Corridor, Newcastle, my native.
At first I wasn’t working and so solely went to 1 present a yr. Once I bought a job in 1994, working nights at B&Q, I began doing fairly properly and it turned 10 a yr. I met mates by the gigs and we began to go collectively. Ten reveals a yr changed into 15, which changed into following the entire tour. Quickly I used to be doing your complete UK tour yearly. Probably the most gigs I’ve seen in a single yr is 42. It practically killed me.
I don’t drive, however my mates will give me lifts or I’ll take the practice. On the venue, I all the time prefer to get down the entrance if I can. I’ll attempt to get throughout the first 10 rows, typically the primary or second. We’ve had nods from Francis Rossi within the band. A number of instances, I’ve been fortunate to be let inside to look at the soundcheck.
One of the best present I noticed was in all probability in 1988, on the Nationwide Exhibition Centre in Birmingham. They have been all on prime kind, the gang have been prime notch. After reveals, you’ll be knackered, sweaty, your eardrums gone. You’ll be hyper and it’ll take you two hours to relax. Then you definately’ll assume: “Oh, I’ve bought to do that once more tomorrow.” It simply rolls on and on. We used to sleep within the backs of mates’ automobiles or vans. By the tip of the tour all you wish to do is sleep. I all the time say: assume how the roadies really feel.
It’s foolish once I take into consideration the amount of cash I’ve spent. I used to be preserving a tab however it was getting scary so I ended. It used to value about £1,500 a tour, together with tickets, journey, lodging and meals. I reckon I should be into six figures by now. However as my grandad used to say: you’re not right here for ever, so that you may as properly spend it.
Folks knock me for doing what I do, however I all the time ask: “What’s your ardour? Do I knock you for doing that?” Some folks smoke or drink –how a lot does that value them?
Once I’m at a present, I get a sense of being amongst mates. There are others who’ve been to many extra Quo gigs than me – one particular person I do know is properly in direction of 900. Folks know my scenario, so if I’ve a seizure, they give the impression of being out for me. Typically, we hold to ourselves, however we ship one another Christmas playing cards and always remember one another’s birthdays. When Rick Parfitt died in 2016, it was a hell of a shock, although I knew he’d been unwell. It was like shedding a member of the family. However even with out Rick, the Quo carry on going.
My different huge curiosity is vinyl accumulating. I’ve bought about 20,000 data. Of these, 6,500 are Quo data from everywhere in the globe. It’s written into my will that once I die, I’ll be buried in a casket produced from melted-down Quo data. The undertakers say it’ll take spherical about 1,000 of them.
Hopefully I gained’t pop my clogs any time quickly, although. I nonetheless benefit from the Quo now as a lot as ever. My most up-to-date present was the start of 2022; sadly, I’ve had fairly just a few well being issues just lately so haven’t been to many up to now yr, however I’m hoping to get again quickly. I might like to make it to 500 reveals. God prepared, with my well being scenario and with everybody staying match within the band, it needs to be finished throughout the subsequent couple of years.
If I do make it to 500, I gained’t cease. What else am I going to do? I’m going to maintain going till I drop.
As instructed to Malcolm Jack
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