Tuesday, July 23, 2013

2013-the story so far...

Halfway through the year give or take, and the present quiet offers a chance to reflect on the last few
Baz Cognac 2012
months, a look forward to the coming one, and then on into next year…

The British tour was, as always, a great time…We had nothing to promote commercially, and it was a chance to just get out there again, see everyone, and play… Using Jim McCauley for most of the set and then Jet coming on for the last 30/40 minutes or so was a risk, but a chance we felt we could take, and after a few teething troubles early on in the tour, we straightened the transition out and it worked very well we thought…and it seems a lot of you did too judging by the comments and reviews we received. I passed a milestone with my 500th gig, and as you can see from the footage was completely taken by surprise...As always, too of course, you’ll never please everyone, but we’re used to that and plough on regardless…as you’ll know by now. We were happy with it…

Baz-Philly
Then a breather…a knee operation for JJ on his left cruciate ligament…then off to Canada for the first time since being there as a 5 piece in 2004, the U.S. for the first time in almost 20 years, and my first visit there with the band. It’s been well documented by now that it was a hard slog in places, as all tours are, and wasn’t as seamless as we’re used to in the organisation department, but the shows and unending enthusiasm from the fans and media alike made it a trip to remember for sure…

Everywhere was packed with whooping, hollering yanks and braying Canucks and it was a pleasure to see the faces of people who feared they’d never see us play there again… Cancelling Detroit was a decision that wasn’t taken lightly of course…pulling gigs never is, but we had no choice as at that stage we couldn’t physically get into the United States and the entire tour was at risk had we not done so…In our parlance Detroit ‘took one for the team’…it couldn’t be helped and again, we’re sorry…hopefully we’ll be back…

And so now, during what has been a very quiet summer for us, we’re moving into August, the Royal Albert Hall, and a couple of nice local festivals, one of which we’ve done before… When we were first asked to do the Proms it all seemed a little unreal…for a band that has thrived on bucking trends and moving in the darker fringes of British music, courting controversy whilst still having hits and enjoying huge popularity, it almost seems like some sort of perverse vindication…The BBC, pomp and circumstance, and ‘Land of Hope and Glory’…

Err...maybe not...
The band have played at the RAH before of course, but it’s another first for me and I’m looking forward to it immensely, as are JJ, Jet and Dave…we get to play with a very big orchestra this time, as well as live simultaneous broadcasts on the beeb…and as I write this it’s very close to selling out…Hip hip….

Two festivals follow then we break for a while as preparations are made for next year…don’t know what they’ll be, where we’ll be or what form much of it will take…but we’re plotting, planning and scheming…and when we know, so will you… Enjoy the rest of the summer…

Baz/23rd July 2013

Baz Cognac pic thanks to Phil Martin
Baz Philly pic courtesy of Mitchell Smith

28 comments:

  1. Yes. Thanks for using my shot.

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  2. Thanks baz - Loved seeing you all play Norwich earler this year. Still sounding fantastic and fresh as always. Great to see the 'Big Man' take to the drums. Can't imagine being able to do that myself at his tender years. Much appreciated. Congratulations on your 5ooth gig - as you say one can't please all of the people all of the time; however, that said you're a born Strangler and a joy to watch play. Indeed, I've managed to convert some frends to the Dark {Black] Side simply by getting them listen to your vocals on Relentless. May it continue.

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  3. Glad you're plotting, planning and scheming for 2014, I'm grinning already in anticipation. And I can still 'feel it' from March.

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  4. Baz, great to hear. Congratulations on all these accomplishments. By not mentioning any U.S.tour, it's safe to say the much ballyhooed September west coast tour in the U.S. is off. Please do let us know if and when you will return to the states. Cheers.

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  5. Looking forward to August for the 2 festivals but not the long, bleak winter waiting for the 2014 tour. I can still 'feel it' too! ;-)

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  6. The lovely thing about loving you lot (36 years and counting), is that as time goes by: it never feels like Nostagia .. it's always current and vital.

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  7. hope theres a 40th anniversary tour then my life would be complete , this years glasgow gig was the best ever , and last 2 albums fantastic , long may you continue , thanks for being part of my life for 40 yrs .

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  8. Looking forward to seeing y`all at weyfest, and then a well deserved rest for you all. Enjoy your summer too. :)

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  9. Yeah looking forward to next year my 18 year old went to The Roundhouse next year i'm taking my 13 year old but to a seating venue and I will do the standing with my eldest at another venue

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  10. thanks baz, it was nice meeting you and others at the roundhouse gig. cant wait for next tour. good luck

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  11. Seeing the band and meeting you guys in NYC - Boston & Philly was brilliant to say the least. I can only hope that the enthusiasm you encountered in the US will expedite your return! We're waiting for the announcement of that West Coast leg...hope it's not falling apart. Steaks & beers are on me when you're in SF next!! :)

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  12. Mixed feelings here ... congrats on your 500th, and the RAH gig and the Proms and all that ... but us Yanks were all fired up for your return to the colonies to do a west coast club tour this fall. Make no mistake, my friends and I were delighted that we flew to the east coast and caught the NYC-Boston-Philly shows ... but we were also stoked at the expectation that you'd return to the west coast this fall for that club tour. It doesn't sound like that's in the plans for the balance of 2013 ... so please PLEASE "pencil us in" for 2014. Your west coast fans are waiting.

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  13. Congratulations on your milestone Baz. Come back and play in Toronto anytime!!The fans were pumped and the music hall was oozing with energy!!
    63-25-03

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  14. looking forward to seeing you guys in york or near by, and hopefully at the cluny in newcastle soon take care keep on rockin

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  15. Dont forgot for one person to leave a toilet jamming turd in one of the alberts lavvies, its traditional and apparently worth 3 years good luck =)

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  16. Looking forward to 2014, nice to hear a dj on our local independant radio station commenting after playing "Always the sun" that the band still have "got it" after playing at a local festival last sept!

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  17. Matt (Safari) BrignallJuly 24, 2013 at 3:39 PM

    I think the band can be proud of the the year so far,it sounds like the year off next year won't happen.As the band are doing so well at the moment,it would be crazy to take a year off.I look forward to seeing the boys suited and booted at The Albert Hall.

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  18. Looking forward to seeing the band play in the City by the Bay, San Francisco!!
    Julie

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  19. Great to see the band firing on all cylinders and I very much hope 2014 will include a gig in Berlin. I saw the band a lot up until La Folie times and then, well, drifted off. A birthday present of the 30th anniversary gig at The Round house reawakened my enthusiasm and saw me buy quite a few albums including Giants. I think that, from other live videos I have seen online Baz's contribution and the return to a four piece, the band are really at a peak. So, please make an old geezer very happy and storm it up in Berlin soon.

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  20. Hi Baz, thanks for keeping us fans informed of what the band are up to. Great stuff! All the best. Michael.

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  21. Baz congrats on your milestone.was at Manchester academy gig with my 17th year
    old son in march what a gig were still talking about it,great to see jet play for so long and all credit to jim.Try play over in Dublin next year or sooner Kevin and Rob INBLACK.

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  22. hi baz well done on your 500 th gig,we all think you have done the band so good since your arrival!cant wait to see you you all on the proms ...how posh,the band are 40 next year and im 50,so ive now been a fan for 36 years seems like yesterday cant wait to see you all next year.mikeinblack x

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  23. All the very best for RAH and congrats on another amazing year so far.

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  24. Thanks Baz, so when are you coming back to Aus, you made a promise!
    Take care.

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  25. Dude, Had a great time at the Glasgow, New York, Boston, and Chicago gigs. I know you guys were having a blast as we chatted after all the gigs. There is obviously no doubt many of your fans in the US are hopeful of another tour. It was a great success and the band went down a storm. America is waiting!

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  26. Baz - as always, an excellent blog. What a year you guys have had, and boy have you slogged at it.
    Just one thing, and I know other fans who travel across Europe seeing you like myself agree, can we knock any ideas of performing new material on the head and give the punters the pleasure of hearing the classic tunes which made them follow The Stranglers in the first place.

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  27. Not perform 'new' material - and you call yourself a fan? If you want to hear just the same old stuff rolled out over and over again go to a Stones concert. THE whole point about the Stranglers has been change. Don't get me wrong, I love to hear old favs (and what a back catalogue they have) but if you just want old stuff - go and see a tribute band! Just like High WRONGLY said about The Stranglers. Playing a fair number of the classics is a fair deal for fans but, if you want the band to continue, they have to keep growing and that means new stuff. Did you complain on the Black & White tour that they played too much 'new' stuff.

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  28. Just have to add a comment about the Proms 40 show: great stuff! Looked like the band enjoyed it as much as the audience, judging from the huge grins!

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