poster source: http://www.leehawkins.com Ad supplied by Sarah Harvey
Sarah Harvey… Must admit this one rather took me by surprise when I came across it. February 1st, 1969.
Phil Gill… From the words ” personal appearance” It looks like that might have been a Status Quo meet and greet rather than a gig.
Mick Knights… Status quo did play there not sure if it was the witch doctor or cobweb, but it was when pictures of matchstick men was a hit.
Sarah Harvey… I was wondering the same as you Phil about the ‘Personal Appearance’ bit…..but it would be nice to clear this one up….did they play or did they just show their faces?
John Storer… I’m thinking that the words “Personal appearance by” was an attempt to make the Quo look a bigger, more popular, band than they actually were at the time. By Feb 69 they had had top ten hits with “Pictures of Matchstick Men” and “Ice in the Sun”, but their next single “Technicolour Dreams” (released in September 1968) had flopped miserably, failing to reach the Top 60. Feb 69 saw the release of their 5th single “Make Me Stay A Bit Longer” and that also failed to chart. Those were the days when you were only as big as your last single. Like many bands, they were on the road pretty much non-stop. In January 69 they had been the support band for Small Faces on a short tour of Germany. Their set list still included a fair number of cover versions of songs by other acts, including Little Richard and The Beatles. They even did a cover of Vanilla Fudge’s cover of the Supremes “You Keep Me Hanging On”. Two days before the Cobweb “appearance””, they had been in Manchester recording a session for the BBC. During the week after, they played gigs at Wolverhampton, Birmingham and Ross-on-Wye. Later that month they were 3rd on the bill to The Move and Spencer Davis Group at the Royal Albert Hall It would be another 13 months before they had another hit – “Down The Dustpipe” – which marked a change in their image from psychedelic dandies to denim-clad rockers. 1970 also saw the release of the rather excellent “Ma Kelly’s Greasy Spoon” album, followed in 1971 by “Dog of Two Head”. Neither album, however, caught the attention of the record-buying public and both failed to chart. The change in their fortunes came in 1972 with the “Piledriver” album and the “Paper Plane” single. This started a 17 year run of unbroken hit singles and albums, by which time they had almost become a self-parody.
I was only 12 in Feb 1969 so what do I know, but I’m guessing that their appearance at the Cobweb was a gig. It certainly features in their gigging history. Like many others, I tend to regard Quo as a bit of a joke these days, but those 3 early 70s albums mentioned above still sound bloody good today … and their cover of The Doors “Roadhouse Blues” on “Piledriver” is, for me, better than the original
Caz Simpson… I remember the GoGo competition, I even remember the semi finalists but I can’t remember the name of the winner. The prize was a holiday in Spain and she asked Ginger for the £30 instead! He obliged.
Mick O’Dowd… Very Interesting!(as they once said on was it Rowan & Martins Laugh In?) Never thought the Quo appeared in town before their Pier concert. I believe Andre Palfrey-martin & Paul Casson tried to book them on The Pier but it fell through.
Joe Knight… Still got my collection like new in the blue round container!!! lol great days!!
Garry Mitchell… I can settle the debate over the nature of Status Quo’s appearance as I was there! It was indeed The Cobweb by then and The Quo were brilliant. All dressed in Mod gear with neat haircuts. Can’t remember the setlist but, apart from their two hits already mentioned, i definitely recall a great version of Steppenwolf’s ‘Born to be Wild’ which I hadn’t heard before. Strobe lights flashing; standing right by the stage; the great sound, for me, it was a night to remember. I have had a soft spot for Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt ever since although, apart from seeing them in early 1973 on the pier, have never been to another Quo concert or bought any of their stuff.
John Wilde… I distinctly remember not going
Mick Knights… I distinctly remember going! It was in their back combed hair paper plane days and as I recall it was a good show. Senior moment there, it was pictures of matchstick men as they had one guitar tuned especially for the intro.