Hospice staff get mean and moody in double denim: L to R: Sandy, Michelle & John
With all the excitement surrounding the upcoming Wirral Rocks concert at Tranmere Rovers in May, you may (or may not) be surprised to hear that we have an überfan of Status Quo here in our ranks at Wirral Hospice St John’s. Needless to say our Finance Manager, John Pentland, is very (very very very) excited that our Wirral Rocks concert has ‘The Quo’ headlining on the Saturday night. So, for those of us who aren’t too sure about what all the fuss is about, we thought we would ask him exactly why he loves the legendary rockers so much.
When and where did you first see Status Quo?
I first saw Status Quo at the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall in December 2001.
How did that come about? Had you been a fan for a while?
I had been into rock music for a while and had been to a lot of different concerts but had never really been a fan of Status Quo. Of course, I was aware of their music as most people are, but I was not really a fan and had not considered going to see them live. Then one day my niece phoned up and said she was buying tickets to take her mum and dad to see Status Quo in Liverpool, and asked if my wife and I wanted to go with them. I said “yes,why not!”.
What were your thoughts on that first gig?
We were in the next to back row at the very top of the circle, so pretty much the worst seats in the house and I was not expecting to have a great time. However, when The Quo came onstage they totally blew me away. I was hooked from the first minute. It was the best gig I had ever seen. They tore through an unbelievable back catalogue of hits, and the energy coming off them was truly amazing! We all had an awesome night!
John has been lucky to get seats close to the stage action!
How many times do you think you’ve seen them since 2001?
Since then Gill and I have seen Status Quo 27 times. We go to quite a lot of concerts of all different types, but the Quo gigs are the highlight of the year for us. We always go to their winter shows in either Liverpool or Manchester, and try to get to as many of the outdoor summer shows as we can reasonably get to! In 2014 we saw them 4 times, and last year we saw them 3 times!
What are they like performing live?
The Quo are like a finely tuned machine. They have been performing live all of their lives, and they have got the performance down to a “T”. They are amazingly good musicians, and don’t really get the credit they deserve musically. I have never seen a bad Quo gig. They always give it all they have got and, the energy coming off the stage is infectious. I defy anyone to attend a Status Quo gig and not have a good time!
For people who may not be fans of SQ, how would you try to encourage them to give them a listen?
The live experience is nothing like listening to the records. It is a magical experience to see Status Quo live. The thing is, they are packing in touring the electric set after this year, and will only be doing some acoustic shows in future. Their acoustic shows are great, but they are a totally different proposition, they are sit down affairs in smaller venues. So our show is one of the last ever full on electric guitar driven Status Quo shows! I urge anyone who is vaguely interested in rock or pop music to take the opportunity of seeing The Quo live at our gig in May – I guarantee you will have a great night out!
John’s wife, Gill, is an equally big fan of Status Quo!
What’s your favourite SQ song?
I love “Rain”, “Big Fat Mama” and “Forty Five Hundred Times” – not their most popular songs but some of the ones that sound amazing live!
What’s your favourite SQ album?
There are so, so many to choose from, but for me the “Heavy Traffic” album from 2002 is my favourite. I was right at the front for the Liverpool show of the Heavy Traffic tour that year, it was the first time I had seen The Quo close up and it was an experience I will never forget.
Why is Wirral Rocks so important to Wirral Hospice St John’s?
It is getting more and more expensive for us to provide the superb care which we deliver each year. If we can make this event successful and make it a regular part of our fundraising then it will take our income up a notch and enable us to carry on providing that care.
John makes a good argument for seeing Status Quo; and with this year being their last performing an electric set it will be one of the very last times to experience ‘The Quo’ as he has.
Tickets are available on Ticketmaster via www.wirralrocks.com or by calling 0844 844 0444.
If VIP is more your thing; please contact Michelle Talgam on firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about VIP tickets or our corporate sponsorship packages.
Fancy taking part in a daft dress-down day like a Double Denim Day in aid of Wirral Hospice? Please contact the fundraising team on 0151 343 0778, we’d love to hear from you!
Author: Jacinta Warwick