THEY’VE been around for what seems like for ever, but Status Quo are showing few signs of succumbing to old age and are still going strong as they near their golden anniversary.
The veteran rock’n’roll band were named as Britain’s hardest-working act by the Performing Rights Society two years on the trot, in 2008 and 2009, and they have no plans to take it easy just yet as they’re back on the road in December for their second QuoFest Christmas tour.
Last year’s festive tour included a date at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena, but the band are heading south of the river this time round.
Their Tyneside show, on Wednesday, December 12, is their first at the Sage Gateshead but not their first visit to the town as they have played at Gateshead Stadium before, back in 1991 supporting Rod Stewart.
Status Quo have notched up 64 hit singles in Britain since they were founded in 1967, more than any other band, and 22 of those made the top ten.
Their first hit was Pictures of Matchstick Men, a No 7 in 1968, and their last was a reworking of their 1986 hit In the Army Now for charity, a No 26 in 2010.
In between came an almost-endless succession of songs familiar to almost anyone with access to a radio over the last five decades, including Whatever You Want, What You’re Proposing, Caroline, The Party ain’t Over Yet and their cover version of John Fogerty’s Rockin’ All Over the World.
The band are still led by founder members Francis Rossi, 63, and Rick Parfitt, 64, accompanied by relative new boys Andrew Bown, their keyboard player since 1976, and John Edwards, their bassist since 1986, along with their newest recruit, Matt Letley, their drummer since 2000.
Quo’s last album was 2011’s Quid Pro Quo, a No 10 hit initially only available at Tesco stores but later given a wider release.
Tickets for the Gateshead show, costing £37.50, are almost sold out, but there are a couple left. For details, go to www.thesagegateshead.org