Thursday, July 18, 2013

Status Quo - Golden Hour Of (1973)

(U.K 1962 - Present)
It's very much an up and down world as Status Quo will, almost to a man, tell you. The first major break through for this band, that has been together virtually from school days, was in 1967 when 'Pictures Of Matchstick Men' shot to the top five position in both the British and American charts. With sales in excess of two million and three follow-up hits "Ice In The Sun" "Down The Dustpipe" and " In My Chair" each of which gave the band international status, life looked good for the band.
Then inexplicably everything changed and the Quo slipped from the charts and the pop music headlines. But at heart a band, if it's sufficiently dedicated and talented;'survives and Status Quo not only survived the black periods but found within their own writing, a strength that makes them a strong force on the musical map of 1973. Now the college circuits and clubs occupy the working life of the band that Mike Rossi, the leader, has always believed in.
This Golden Hour album takes a good look at the musical progress over the years of Status Quo. The early hits are all there as is the gutsy promise in their playing that gave a very clear indication of just where the band were heading. Status Quo fans will find it a valuable addition to their collection; pop historians will regard it as a real find in the ever turbulent world of popular music [linear notes from album cover 1973]
Chronology Of Status Quo in 1968
(sourced from
5.1.1968          Release of the single "Pictures of Matchstickmen" (Rossi) - Lead-Vocals: Francis Rossi. B-Side: "Gentleman Joe's Sidewalk Cafe". Lead-Vocals: Francis Rossi and Alan Lancaster. To avoid another flop, Pat Barlow paid the pirate radio station 'Radio Caroline' so that the new single was played daily. 'Radio Caroline' was founded in 1965 by an Irish businessman and was settled on ships or on air-bases close to the Dutch/English boarder. Another pirate radio station at the time was 'Radio Veronica', who regularly broadcasted the dutch TOP40.
16.01.1968      BBC-Session in studio 4 Maide Vale. (Songs: Spicks and Specks, Pictures of Matchstickmen, Judy in Disguise)

22.01.1968      Performance on the David Symonds Show in England.
24.01.1968     The permanent airplay of the new single "Pictures of Matchstickmen" on 'Radio Carline' achieved. Single entered the charts on January 24 and climbed up. The music media took notice too.
03.02.1968      Frontcover "Chartclimbers" in the New Musical Express. The single notched up at No.7 and stayed a total of 12 weeks in the UK single-charts. Another frontcover appeared on the magazine "Fabulous208", an English teenager mag.
08.02.1968      First time in the BBC-show "Top of the Pops" - no performance.
15.02.1968      First performance of The Status Quo at "Top of the Pops". Moderator: Jimmy Savile, Dave Cash. Until this time the band played with Madelaine Bell on her tour, but with the own success they retired. Immediately the first own shows were booked. More chart-success throughout Europe and USA and Australia with "Pictures of Matchstickmen" - USA No 12. Germany No. 7.
18.02.1968      Headline-concert in Ruislip, Middlesex, England. Another shows in Scotland and England.

01.03.1968      Another single had to be released to ride on the success of "Matchstickmen" and the band went into recording sessions. The Rossi-Song "Black Veils of Melancholy" was chosen.
24.03.1968      Single-release "Black Veils of Melancholy (Rossi) Lead-Vocals: Francis Rossi. B-Side the song "To be free" written by Roy Lynes. Lead-Vocals: Roy Lynes. But the new single couldn't match the success of "Pictures of Matchstickmen" and sank without a trace. The critics talked about a copy of "Pictures of..." and the band was already described as "One-Hit-Wonders".
05.04.1968     The band was signed as supporting act on the Gene Pitney-Tour which included 28 concerts throughout Great Britain. Other support bands have been: Amen Corner and Simon Dupree and the Big Sound. In bigger cities additional support was "The Marmelade". While The Status Quo toured with Gene Pitney, Andy Bown played a lot of shows with The Herd in Great Britain.
01.06.1968     Bob Young was signed as roadie for The Status Quo. Meanwhile studio recordings started for the next single release. This time a song written by songwriters Ronnie Scott and Marty Wilde (father of Kim Wilde) - "Ice in the sun".
26.07.1968     Single-release "Ice in the Sun" (Scott, Wilde) Lead-Vocals: Ricky Parfitt (and Francis Rossi). B-Side is the first Rossi/Parfitt teamwork "When my mind is not live". Lead-Vocals: Ricky Parfitt.01.12.1968     A poll on the "Record Mirror" reveals The Status Quo as number 12 of the most promising bands of the year.08.11.1968     The release of the new single "Technicolor Dreams" was cancelled in last minute by record company PYE. Only some copies exist and whenever one comes up for sale, the price is up to 400 pounds and more.
01.08.1968     The Status Quo in the Show "Top of the Pops" - no performance.
21.08.1968     The new single entered UK-Charts. Highest position No. 8 and spent 12 Weeks in the charts. With the second hit of the year the band again in the spotlights.
14.09.1968     First performance of The Status Quo on German television at the famous Beatclub (Folge 35) with the song "Ice in the sun".
19.09.1968     The Status Quo in the show "Top of the Pops" - song "Ice in the sun".
26.09.1969     The Status Quo in the Belgian show "Tienerklanken" with their first video-clip. You can see the band walking downstairs and then they are sitting around a gambling table and all are playing roulette and smoking cigars. This clip is from the Canadian DVD compilation "Remember 60's Vol.3" and it is very rare.
27.09.1968     Album-release "The Picturesque Matchstickable Messages of the Status Quo". The album couldn't chart initially.
10.10.1968     The Status Quo in "Top of the Pops" - song "Ice in the sun".
26.10.1968     Performance on the show "Crackerjack", which was very popular for kids.


This post consists of MP3's (320kps) ripped from my vinyl copy of this hard to find album.  Although the tracks are somewhat dated, they give the listener an insight into where the Status Quo sound came from. Also included is full album artwork along with select photos of the band from the 60's, some of which were sourced from the book Status Quo - Just Doin' It by Bob Young, Cassell Illustrated.
It is also worth noting that the band was a 5 piece at the time of these recordings, with the inclusion of keyboards by Roy Lynes and Rick Harrison on rhythm guitar (eventually replaced by Richie Parfit). The picture on this Golden Hour album cover is somewhat deceiving, as their' long hair' - 'quo stance' image did not appear until the early 70's - a far cry from their actual look in the late 60's (see band picture above)
Most of the tracks on this compilation come from their 1968 album 'Picturesque Matchstickable Messages From The Status Quo" and the lesser known 1969 album "Spare Parts". It should also be noted that this Golden Hour compilation by ASTOR Records was later released by Hallmark Records under the title 'Status Quo' (see cover below)
01. Pictures Of Matchstick Men

02. The Price Of Love
03. Mr. Mind Detector
04. Paradise Flat05. You're Just What I Was Looking For Today
06. When My Mind Is Not Live
07. The Clown
08. Elizabeth Dreams
09. When I Awake
10. Are You Growing Tired Of My Love?
11. Ice In The Sun
12. So Ends Another Life
13. Spicks And Specks

14. Velvet Curtains
15. Poor Old Man

16. Sunny Cellophane Skies
17. Gentlemen Joe's Sidewalk Cafe
18. Face Without A Soul

19. Sheila
20. Green Tambourine
21. Black Veils Of Melancholy

Status Quo Link (150Mb) New Link 21/12/2016

1 comment:

  1. by crackies there is some psycedelic Quo on that one aint there?...wicked