Q & A Archive - January 2006 Print E-mail

Colour Code: DANNY, LUKE, BEN, HARRY, CHRIS, THINNY


Q: I was just thinking about how amazing the gig was on Sunday in Sheffield. I was also thinking about the first time I ever went to a thunder gig 15 years ago (I was 13!!) and all the other gigs in between. Sunday was just as fabulous as that first time and I still get terribly excited before every one and end up as giddy as a schoolchild and impossible to have an adult conversation with (I even wandered down the side of city hall early on and listened to the sound check like I used to as a daft teenager). I still wake up after with really aching bones and that feeling that I was part of something very special. I get the impression that you all still love it (and us) as much as you always have so, I suppose my question is do you still feel the same way? Is the same rush of adrenaline still there? Is it all still as great a feeling as it was 15 years ago? I hope so. Sherry Hannam, Hull
D: The feeling you get during a show is unlike any other, and it's always been the same, very exciting and pure pleasure. Touring can be quite tough on the body and it's become more so as we've aged, but to be honest any aches and pains disappear the moment the show begins.


Q: Really enjoyed your recent gig at the city hall, great stuff lads! when you had finished your encore, and when everyone was leaving, can you tell me what the instrumental music [with harmonica] was playing over the p.a? I would really like to know if possible. Brett Charger, Newcastle upon Tyne
D: No idea I'm afraid. We leave the choice of music before and after we play to our sound man. I'd offer to ask him but I know he'll just shrug at me...


Q: Just received the latest DVD and was so impressed with the quality and content! In case anyone hasn't told you before...you are actually quite hilarious! My question is... who did the editing and what package did they use? The effects were brilliant. Especially liked the interview featuring Chris and Danny! Poor Chris... are you always so mean to him? Did you have a hand in deciding what went in? (and what was censored!) Great performance in Glasgow...hurry back! Buffy, Scotland
D: Glad you like it, we hoped people might get an insight into our personalities through the DVD, and as you've pointed out, we can't help having fun. None of the put downs are serious, it's just part of the banter that comes out of being cooped up together for years. The editor was Tom Robinson from Mediachill, I have no idea what package he uses I'm afraid. We looked at loads of the footage and selected bits we thought were appropriate, then we handed it over to Tom and Mark (The Illusionators at Mediachill), along with the outline brief. They did the rest, and we're very pleased with the result, hopefully you guys will be too. 


Q: Guys, I've been reading the rumours for the return of the "Monsters of Rock" festival at Milton Keynes bowl in June, apparently Thunder has been confirmed to appear, can you guys comfim/deny this? (Look Forward To Seeing You Guys Tomorrow Night In Brighton!)
Preston Kersey, Brighton
T: Thunder have NOT been confirmed for the Monsters Of Rock festival this summer. However, I can tell you that the bands management have been contacted by the promoters and discussions are being had. A decision has not yet been made, but as soon as we know one way or the other we will let you all know,


Q: I came to the Newcastle gig on Friday and must say it was the best night I've had in a LONG time (thanks to my brother who got me the ticket for Christmas after saying he would get me a ticket for any gig in Newcastle, where I'm at uni. After listening to Finest Hour and a Bit, I chose Thunder). My question is, what was the song played that night that started off with Ben on the keyboard and Danny singing? Ben Elliott, Newcastle
T: Glad you enjoyed the show. The song in question is 'Like A Satellite', but in a more mellow form than the one you will have heard on 'Their Finest Hour'.


Q: Great to see a couple of different live tracks on the Jap. version but it works out fairly expensive to import it in. Is there any likelihood that these tracks will be available via download? James Vincent, Reading
D: Yes, the whole Shepherd's Bush show from March 2005 is likely to be available via download at some stage in the future. We're trying to achieve a situation where each song will be available with and without fades. The thinking behind it is that once achieved, those who want the whole show will be able to buy the non fade versions and assemble them in the correct order for the full show warts and all. Those who want individual songs can buy the fade versions of just the songs they desire. It's a good idea but at the moment it's proving a bit painful to implement. We want to offer downloadable artwork too so buyers can burn the songs and get their own "Thunder DIY Live CD". We'll crack it, and as soon as we do we'll post the news on the site as usual.


Q: Good morning Thunder!!!! It's 11.00am, Sunday 22nd and I have woke up with the biggest smile on my face. You guys were sensational last night and boy did you impress my Northern Soul loving Dad. (So much he is buying us all tickets to come see you again in Manchester on the 3rd February for my birthday. Bonus!!!!) My dad is what you would call a virgin to the rock and roll scene but after last night's performance he would like you all to know the Thunder experience will now have to be a regular thing. (Congratulations chaps we've bagged another one!! he he ).  It seems like you guys are getting popular by the minute, so much that when we arrived in Glasgow at 4pm, jumped in a black and white to town for food, the taxi driver asked "whats you folkes doing in Glasgow then?" and we told him we were off to see Thunder. The taxi driver laughed out loud and said "tonight is your lucky night, Guess the song" In slipped the cd and on came Love Walked In. We were all sat in amazement and we even had the pleasure of him singing along at the top of his voice. So my question is, are we going for world domination??? he he he. Thanks Guys... Danielle Louise, Leeds
D: This I love.. This warms the cockles of my heart...Your Dad is more than welcome to buy as much Thunder stuff as he wants, and to attend all and any future shows. Good job! Consider yourself popular, and yes we are going for WD.


Q: I have been a fan for many years now and was wondering if there is an album I may have missed between Giving the Game Away and the latest one. Rob Gillespie, Thurso
T: There certainly is. You've missed out on the excellent 'Shooting At The Sun' album.


Q: why don't you open with "party" anymore? r u bored with playing it? is it a tough one for Danny on voice box? I think it got everyone in party mood which is what Thunder live r about. Who chooses set lists? Shaun, Barnsley
L: I choose the set list. The reason we don't still open with 'Welcome To The Party' is because you can't keep repeating yourself. Every time we tour I spend a lot of time putting together the setlist bearing many things in mind such as 'what haven't we played for a while?' 'is there enough material from the current album?' 'does the pace of the set ebb and flow in the right places?' etc. I've said it before and I'm sure I'll have to say it again; it's impossible to play everybody's favourite tune and I have to look at the big picture. It's the set as a whole that matters.


Q: Hey guys, just wanna know are there any songs that you have tried to cover but couldn't for some reason? cheers, see you in Manchester! Steve France, Wrexham
L: None that I can think of. I think we've been around long enough to know what works for us.


Q: Luke, I've always wondered about writing my own stuff but I always come up with pathetic lyric ideas... I have everything but lyrical genius...how do you as a songwriter mentally prepare yourself and go about writing a song for Thunder? I've always thought of writing my own songs for a band I'm in but I can't pull it off! Any advice? Luke M, UK
L: Just use your imagination and be honest. If there's a subject that moves you or there's something you feel strongly about then you have all you need right in front of you. The trick is being able to reach your listener and convey those feelings to him/her/them. The most successful songs have lyrics that everyone can relate to.


Q: What makes you feel humble???? Ele, Chesterfield
L: People who cope with tremendous difficulties in their everyday life but remain happy and optimistic in the face of their problems.
D: People who show dignity and grace when they're clearly suffering. News footage of people starving always makes me feel very humble and extremely angry at the same time.


Q: I was wondering with having one of the tightest drum/bass sections around, what you thought of the Cozy Powell/Neil Murrey traveling section. I'm not the biggest fans of the drum solo but was in the front row at the Cambridge Corn Exchange for Cozy (In Black Sabbath) doing the 1812 overture drum solo. being so close to the power & dry ice was something I'll always remember! Any of you fans of the late great drummer? Mart, Essex
H: Thanks for the compliment mate and I agree that Cozy and Neil were a pretty tight rhythm section. Cozy Powell was a big inspiration to me when I was learning to play. I met him once-a great pleasure indeed and I was shocked when he tragically died. I'm not a big fan of drum solos either to be honest!!!!!!


Q: I see the colour of your replies is in Pink on the Q&A who made the choice of colour? And Why is it you? Any reflection to you? Shaun, Torpoint
H: Nothing to do with me mate! This is purely the choice of the Thin One and I have to say, I'm not a fan of pink at all. But I do like to stand out!!! But I can assure you, it is no reflection on me. Must dig that pink cap out of my wardrobe............ha ha!


Q: Could you please advise me of the approx times for each band / artist for the Bournemouth gig on 24th Jan. Timing is tight due to work commitments, I want to be sure to see Toby Jepson as it's been a while since I saw him with his last band? Also, is there any way I can get a copy of the video from Luke's solo single, "Go With The Flow"? After all this time it is still my fave album, to be able to see the video would be great. Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated. Neil Parsons, Southampton
T: We don't know the timings yet, but our guess is that it's likely to be roughly as follows:-
19:00 - 19:30 Roadstar
19:55 - 20:40 Toby Jepson
21:10 - 23:00 Thunder
Once again these are guessed timings and not cast in stone but they won't be too far out from reality. Please bear in mind also that times may very from venue to venue. 
There are no plans at the moment to make the videos from Luke's solo album available (there was also a video for 'One Drop') - but maybe one day... 


Q: Hi Ben, Recently I've checked out the Glenn Hughes website. You're in there, too: There's a photo of you talking to JJ Marsh, guitarist of the Glenn Hughes Band, at a festival. Are you friends or what? Keep up the good work, and good luck to your gigs! Simon, Germany
B: JJ Marsh and I go back a long way, but I'll tell you more in my next Wit Wisdom and Whiskey...


Q: My mum has one of Luke's plectrums that he threw into the crowd. Why don't you throw yours into the crowd? Danny Pollard age 4yrs, Gloucester
B: I do but they are on a piece of elastic.


Q: Seeing that Leyton Orient drew Fulham in the 3rd round of the FA cup and beat them, and now have drawn another London team Charlton. If they beat them, and Palace and the O's make it to the 5th round, what chances is that they will get drawn to play? Also in your opinion what chances for Palace this year in the cup? Lee Friend, London
H: Lee - there's every chance if they both get through this round! It's the luck of the draw. A cup run would be nice but I think that a return to the Premiership is top priority.


Q: Myself and a few friends are of to London later in the year, and with you guys being from the afore mentioned city and I would imagine quite well used to hotel's, could you recommend anywhere in London that is not to expensive but still ok ie: not a @*!* hole, also any good watering holes, any suggestions appreciated, cheers. Lee, Belfast
T: To be honest, you would probably be better off asking this question on the message board - there are a number of people on there that will almost certainly be able to advise your on this matter much better than we could.


Q: I think this is probably a question for the 'Grand Thin One, The First'!!. Have you got specific locations for where the cover shots of the Just Another Suicide and Giving The Game Away were taken, and why these places were chosen for the cover? I'm currently photographing some of London's 'darker' places for a half related side project, as I find them much more interesting and beautiful than say, Piccadilly Circus, and would like to take a photo of these places. Also, are you guys interested in photography, have you done any of it yourselves? Alex, London
L: The shots were taken on the South Bank of the Thames around Greenwich and the tunnel shots for 'Suicide' were taken around London Bridge. I love photography and it's one of those things I would love to do if only I had the time.
B: They were my boots in the picture! I had to go and stand in the freezing cold on the Thames "beach" and splash in the puddles - and to think they say this job is all glamour eh!


Q: Thanks for a great Christmas show - it was 'absolutely bloody marvelous' to coin a phrase! Anyway - apparently when Bryan May meets his fans, they give him a sixpence to play his guitar - what would we give Luke or Ben if we met them?!? Reita, Sutton Coldfield
L: A nice bottle of Marques De Riscal Reserva please.........
B: Last time I saw Brian May playing the guitar it cost me a darn site more than sixpence, thirty five quid for a ticket I think. Still you can give me a fiver and I'll play guitar for you.


Q: As the Christmas work party season comes to an end, we wondered do you have any interesting characteristics that come to the surface when drunk? We have witnessed/participated in the following examples: talking randomly and confessing deep dark secrets to unsuspecting strangers, solitary dancing like someone's dad to a tune straight off Sad FM, and asking careers advice off taxi drivers! Do you have any similar stories? Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Kim and Sasha
L: I'm a very happy drunk thankfully so I tend to love everything and everybody. I have also been known to dance when drunk but only when everybody else in the vicinity is drunker than me!
D: I, like many, am prone to extreme happiness when imbibed, but I have also been known to become quickly irritated on some beverages (so I avoid them). My drunken escapades are many and sordid, so I'm afraid I shan't be revealing them here...
H: I just love everyone and everything around me. Although it has been known for me to be slightly aggressive but that's when I've drunk a gallon of scotch-so I try and stay clear of that particular tipple! As with most people in a drunken state, you won't get too much meaningful conversation out of me (what's new I hear you say), but I tend to be very generous with my cuddles......and I have been known to dance really well(?).............which is nice!
B: When I get I drunk I usually go out as a taxi driver and give careers advice to people and for some reason people always confess their deep dark secrets to me even though I'm a stranger... can't understand it


Q: Hi guys, Happy New Year to you all. We are both looking forward to seeing you back at Hammersmith and was wondering if you have got any plans to treat us all to a new song or two, that is in the works on the forthcoming tour? It has always been a treat on the previous times when you have done it, to hear a song months before it will be available. Hope you all have as much fun on the tour as I am sure we will. Pete and Jackie, Wickford
L: Possibly......we'll have to wait and see.


Q: Firstly, many thanks for the excellent Christmas show enjoyed it very much. I have 2 questions for you. 1 - Where did you meet the McDonald sisters and Peter Shoulder? 2 - Luke, you said once that The Who were a massive inspiration to you, have you ever smashed a guitar a la Peter Townsend, what are your views on instrument trashing in general? Hope to see you on tour soon. Rob, Rotherham
L: I met Tara when she was singing at a singer/songwriter's evening at the Kashmir Klub. We got chatting and it turned out that she'd been a teenager in the audience when we'd done Top Of The Pops a few years earlier. A publisher friend of mine sent me some very early demos by Pete as he thought it would interest me; he was right! After that we became friends and I helped him out with his demos and offered a bit of advicehere and there. I smashed a very cheap guitar when I was 17 during a gig at my old school but I've never felt the urge to do it since. I think if you've paid for it you're entitled to smash it!


Q: Luke, have you or would you ever use Synthesised effects on any recordings? On a basic practice amp, what's the best set-up to replicate the clean Thunder sound? Ian, S. Wales
L: I wouldn't write off using anything if I felt it complemented what we were doing. It's difficult to be precise without hearing the amp in question but I would say keep the volume fairly low so the amp doesn't distort and according to what kind of guitar you're using, back the treble (on the guitar itself) off slightly.


Q: Luke !! I am a Struggling budding musician who is struggling with my sound. What essential effects can you recommend. Pikey
L: I would say start by looking at your guitar and amplifier. If your sound isn't working no effects pedal in the world will make it sound good.


Q: On I love you more than rock and roll Ben plays a cowbell beat I was just wondering whether you took it from another song or just thought it sounded good? ps my dad thinks you stole it from a rolling stones song did You? Adam, Norwich
L: I was aware of the similarity between the cowbell pattern on ILYMTR+R and Honky Tonk Women but I wanted it to have a Stonesy feel. The riff and the song are completely different though!!!!


Q: Hi guys, just been watching the "Flawed to Perfection" DVD- Same great music, much more hair( even for Harry!!) and it has raised a question. I cannot find the alternate version of "Like a Satellite" anywhere in my VAST Thunder collection- did it appear on any album or only as a B side to a single? Mike Wright, Kent
T: The alternate version of 'Like A Satellite' was recorded live at the Hammersmith Apollo 14/10/92 and has only ever been released on the 12" and CD single for the Like A Satellite E.P.


Q: Hi Danny. You always come across as totally relaxed on stage and able to communicate with your audience most effectively - bit of banter, humour etc. Is this something you've always had the gift of doing or have you built up this confidence over the years? Maybe you're still nervous as hell and disguise it brilliantly!! Axel Marple, nr Stockport
D: I don't get nervous, never really have, but my audience skills have grown with practice as the years have gone by. Believe it or not I was quite introverted when we first started playing live, I remember Luke telling me very early on after a pub gig in Hornchurch Essex "if we're going to get famous mate you should think about spending a bit more time looking at the crowd rather than the drummer". So the megalomaniac you see on stage nowadays is a product of evolution.
I won't pretend it's easy to do it, it's not. These songs are buggers to sing, so I fight a bit of a mental battle all the time on tour to get myself up to the challenge of physically delivering my part every night.
Having said that I have total confidence in the band and the power of Thunder music to motivate people when we play it live, so when you have that it helps when the crowd are going mad in front of you. It's a different matter when the crowd don't know, or care, who you are. These are the times when I really earn my money working them round to seeing it my way, and that can be a battle of wills sometimes, but a very sweet feeling by the end of the show when they've realised that resistance is futile and DANCING IS THE LAW.... 


Q: Hi Luke, Maybe that question seems to be a bit strange and stupid to you..I just want to ask you, where do you buy your trousers? Having seen you 3 times now (last time Nürnberg) live on stage , I've always thought during the show "Hey Luke really wears cool jeans" I also want to have jeans like these. Chris, Germany
L: My favourite jeans are Diesel and Energie but I tend to go for what fits me best, regardless of brand.


Q: A while ago, someone asked about seating at the Hammersmith gig. The reply was that the upstairs would only be opened if the gig was sold out. The gig is sold out, so ...? C'mon, guys have faith in us, get the upstairs open and sell more tickets!!!! Mr. Grumpy, London
D: I know not who has said that the show is sold out. I've not heard it. The decision to open and close areas within venues is made by the promoter, not the band. If it were sold out downstairs they would open the balcony, to leave it closed would deprive them of income and that won't happen. If and when we hear it is opened we will make it public here on the site, but lobbying us in the meantime can have no effect I'm afraid. Sorry.


Q: Thinny, what is happening with Meet and Greet passes this year? I have a ticket for Cardiff, do I need to apply? Ian, S. Wales
T: Where have you been Ian? Meet and Greet applications happened via the website in November/December (check out the news page for proof). The applications are now closed, but don't worry - there's always next time!


Q: Hi Guys, Going to the Colston Hall show on the 29th Jan, can't wait! Paul Rodgers and Danny Bowes are the 2 best vocalists in rock music, just wondering what you guys thought of Queen + Paul Rodgers CD/DVD?, if you went to one of their shows? and if they were to cover a Thunder song (I can only wish!) which one would you suggest they do? See you in January. Yasuko, Tokyo
B: I'd like to see him sing a duet with Danny, maybe the "Don't Go Breaking My Heart" by Elton & Kiki.


Q: Happy lovely Birthday! How did you spend a birthday? But excessive drinking is the worry which makes itself ill. I'm looking forward to next year coming to Japan. By the way what will you do by "THUNDER PLEASURE HUNTING TOUR" in Japan? I'll meet in Japan soon! With love. Yasuko, Tokyo
H: Thank you Yasuko. Spent my birthday in Bonn, Germany and Thunder played a gig that night. Don't worry! I didn't have too much to drink.......that night anyway!! Looking forward to February in Japan. See you then.


Q: First of all I would like to thank everyone at Thunder for making next year's tour bigger than ever with probably the 2 best support acts anyone could wish for (well done in talking round Tobe). My question is (after seeing Luke in the crowd at Roadstar) do you mind when out with your friends, fans coming up and disturbing you, or do you prefer to fade into the background (or the sun in your case). Michael, Oxford
H: No I don't mind at all, as long as the person is polite, civilised and articulate like what I is!


Q: Hi Luke, just wondering if there was (or still is) a particular chord(s) which you have had trouble playing? Im thinking probably not but you never know!! Ian, S. Wales
L: Not any more although I'm sure there are a few obscure jazz chords I've never heard of that would be a nightmare.


Q: Have you ever thought of writing instrumental break for the forthcoming new Thunder album (or any released previously)? I think sometime it really sets the mood for the next song. I think Paul Weller's Wild Wood really showed that, and Supergrass's Road to Rouen had a great break after way through. Lee Friend, London
L: The only instrumental I've written is 'El Gringo Retro' and that's probably because I love to write 'songs' as opposed to 'pieces'. Lyrics can double the impact of a good tune in my opinion.


Q: Luke, what is the model of the acoustic guitar you play on stage? Luc, France
L: It's a Tanglewood but I played an Epiphone on the Xmas show which was a very nice guitar.


Q: Hi everybody. Thanks for the big show in Pratteln. And thanks for your kindness during the aftershow.And specially Danny for according a little discussion to me even though he wasn't alright with his voice. My question is : do you have enjoy the little X-mas gift? Does it encourage you to come in the East of France one day ? There's so many other delicious things to taste. Bye. Luc, France
L: Yes and yes. Ta very much.


Q: Luke, before I get to my question, I just wanted to pass on my belated appreciation for the tremendous show your good selves did at Manchester earlier this year. Myself and the wife took along 4 Thunder virgins and now they're all converted to Thunderlife! We were all further impressed when we found out Danny had been suffering with the flu, as none of us had spotted it during the performance - what a pro! Now to my question, it's really a follow up to an answer you gave to a previous question of mine. I asked during the writing period of TMS if there was a possibility of yourself doing an online diary of the writing/recording of the album. You said some of it was being videoed and it may appear at some time. Is this still the case? Are you going to do it this time around? If not, would you ever consider posting writing/recording progress on this site for the fans to read? I've seen this kind of thing on a few other artists websites and it can give fans a real insight into the whole process. Cheers and great work by the lot of you! Duncan Mackerness, Cheshire
L: Work is currently taking place on a DVD which features some behind the scenes type studio footage. Watch this space for more details in the New Year.


Q: Hi Luke, the show - and aftershow - in Winterbach was brilliant (as expected)!! Already looking forward to the next one. By the way, I finally got the proof that the famous "incident" in Lose-Wig-Burg, well Ludwigsburg, was definitely in 1993 and not 1992.
Being a wiseacre myself, I really HATE to admit that you were right, Luke! So indeed my sister Betina was already 15 upon her first Thunder concert... I still got the ticket (found it somewhere in the dark basement) - it was during the Laughing All Over Europe Tour. Finally we can put an end to this... Er, no question this time but I hope you're glad you finally know the exact year. Expect my reward to be quite immense!?! Looking forward to getting the new album (which you already recorded partially, Harry said) and seeing you again on tour next year. Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Cheers! Ulrike, Germany

L: Thank you for your comments and I look forward to my reward whatever it may be!


Q: 1st of all I'd like to thank you and the band for a truly excellent xmas night at rock city was the bet yet! And I have an observation rather than a question about it. A Guitar teacher once told me that "soloing was more about the notes you don't play than the ones you do"............Does that mean your 1st solo on the cockney rebel song last night was your best ever???? ROFL. Tony Bye, Plymouth
L: Ha ha ha ha...............well spotted Tony. I've always subscribed to the Miles Davis theory of 'if you don't feel it, don't play it' but I have to admit that in my relaxed state at the Xmas show I turned myself off then couldn't find the appropriate pedal to switch myself on again. Damn that alcohol stuff!


Q: I'm a bird, right? I'm actually a fine looking bird with an extremely well filled t-shirt, if you get my drift.... I'm a singer in a band. Now my question. Do you mind if I sing 'Dirty Love' at our next gig? I'm really rather good! Any tips .... or should I just thrust my chest
out and give it six nowt? Lots of Love and Kisses Shelly (Badass Beeyatch). Shelly, Isle of Man

L: You sound perfectly qualified to sing 'Dirty Love' so we don't mind, providing you send us some pictures of your performance! If you really think you're good send us a recording as well!


Q: Why is the 2003 Armoury Best of Live! CD so hard to get hold of? Well saying that it's quite easy on Ebay but goes for between £20 & £40 was it unofficial & was pulled or just a limited amount pressed? P.s Merry Xmas to you all,see you in the front row at Cambs. Mart, Essex
T: The CD release had nothing to do with us and was done by Amory/Eagle Records. It's a fairly poor rehash of the original Live album from 1998 (if you have this, there is nothing on 'Best Of Live' that you don't already own). As Eagle do own the rights to this material it is a 'official' release, although not sanctioned by the band. A totally pointless release if you ask us - complete with utterly crap artwork. I expect there were only very few pressed as demand for such a release would be fairly limited. However, you can purchase the CD from Play.com for just £6.99.


Q: Who is supporting you at Manchester Academy on Feb 3rd??? Be great if you could say!!!!! Sorry for randomness of question btw!!! Thank yoooooooou. Sazz, Manchester
T: The details of the support act for the Jan/Feb shows has been available on the Gigs page for some time now. Support is from former Little Angels vocalist Toby Jepson and Roadstar (who were formally called Hurricane Party).


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