Q & A Archive - November 2004

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


Q: WELL DONE! - 27 in the charts! Just heard you on the radio. Are you all happy with the position? Where were you when you were listening to the chart? At home? or as a band together somewhere? Nice one! Well done! Dan Birkett, Southampton
D: I was at home during the chart run down, but I must confess I didn't listen. Chris however, did, and was kind enough to record it, then play it down the phone to me. What a man! We're all very pleased with a top 30 entry. It's been (and continues to be) a huge amount of work, but everyone has done us proud, as we knew they would, and the results are there to be seen.


Q: Hi guys. In addition of my Thunder-mania, I'm very interested in the DVD medium which is, in my opinion, an excellent way to know everything about a movie or a gig. Subtitles are perfect for "internationalization" ... I know that foreign languages are a problem for some people outside the UK. Did you ever thought to add subtitles to your DVDs ? I know that it's not very appropriate for live concerts but, for additional footage as "In Out Put The Kettle On", it could be interesting. I know how it's possible to do it technologically and I'm available to translate into French. If you are interested !?! I can launch this idea on the message board to find some help if you like this idea. Congratulations for the new entry in the UK charts. I've received my copies of ILYMTRNR and I can't wait to hear the new album. Cheers. Olivier Monnard, Belgium
D: This is a good idea, as and when we get close to another DVD release, we may just take you up on this kind offer.


Q: Hi guys, congratulations on the brilliant chart position of no.27!! You have proved that chart success is not exclusive to those bands with major label backing and that communication with fans is just as important. Anyway, fantastic stuff. So heres my question, and its with regards to the new album. Have you considered releasing a limited number in a special LP vinyl format?? Much like the single(s) experiment, you can always rely on a percentage of the thunder fans to buy more than one format of the album (especially as a lot of us thunder loonies still love and miss vinyl!) thus helping your chart ambitions and perhaps opening more doors for you. Do you think this is a viable option or would the cost of such a production outweigh the benefits? Looking forward to seeing you in Glasgow in March! Sean Burke, Glasgow
D: We are considering releasing a limited edition vinyl LP, but at this time there is no firm plan to do it. We know there would be interest in it so if we can we will do it.


Q: Firstly congratulations on the chart entry - hooray! On a serious note though, as someone up in Scotland who ordered their single from Townsend Records would my single be counted as an English purchase? It occurred to me that many of the Scottish fans may have ordered on line and hence the stats for Scotland would look a lot lower than they actually were. Looking forward to seeing you in Glasgow in March 2005.  Anna Macpherson, East Kilbride
T: Your order would not have counted as a Scottish sale unless you bought it in a Scottish shop. We understand your concern, but all sales count in the long run, and we will have access to sales data that shows where the online buyers were from, and all this kind of information will be used in the future to help plan various activities. Fret ye not, all is well.


Q: Is it possible that you excellent musicians could send me a couple of backstage passes for your Manchester show next year? please it would mean so much to me to meet you guys again!! see you guys at the Manchester show!!!! Mike, Manchester
T: Hi Mike. I'm afraid that you'll have to sign up through the web site for a meet and greet pass, just like everybody else. More details nearer the time...


Q: I Was looking back through your history guys and noticed that you have done quite a few promo videos. Will these ever make it to a DVD or does A N Other own the copyright. Finger crossed for a flyer on Sunday guys. Good luck. Neil, Cleethorpes
T: Funny you should ask...stay tuned for more news in the new year...


Q: Is it possible to purchase your live DVDs by post?? You new single sounds great as are the the other tracks especially the pride. Colm, Northern Ireland
D: I'm afraid the DVDs are only available via the Thunder Online Shop. We're not set up to accept orders and payments any other way. They do get sent out by post though...


Q: Hi lads. Got my CD's and vinyl on Monday. I was like a kid again and couldn't wait to get back to the car to play them. loved all the tracks. Tell me will you all be like us and be glued to the radio chart countdown on Sunday to see where you enter. I can't tell you the last time I was this excited. Little Legs, Cleethorpes
D: Sunday is going to be a nail biting day for all of us at Thunder Towers. Much hard work has gone into the campaign for ILYMTRNR, and it is still going on (keep telling everyone to buy it baby, there's still time..), Sunday will be the day we know there is no time left, and so we will be waiting for the chart position, feeling helpless, but excited. We shall see.


Q: Cracking new song, chaps. Fingers crossed for a Top 40 slot, goodness knows you deserve it. OK, so both CD singles are lying next to the player, my 3-yr old son Harry picks up the one with the cowboy cover to play, song starts, Danny sings first line - son asks "Daddy, is that man a cowboy?" What do I tell him? Will he be sadly disappointed?!? Pete, Milton Keynes
D: Tell him he is a cowboy. At this moment in time I must say I do feel a bit like a cowboy, blazing a trail through uncharted (no pun intended) territory. This running your own label lark is fab, blinkin' hard, but very exciting, especially at the moment. We've made a plan, and it appears to be working out very well, with the splendid assistance of you the fans of course. Get your boy to keep his fingers crossed for the cowboy on the record, it may help get him into the charts...


Q: Can you please tell me if t-shirts will be on sale at the Christmas gig? Claire
D: Yes, there will be a one off shirt, designed specifically for this show. It will be on sale on the night, along with the recent tour shirts, the 2 DVD titles, and the SATS CD. All will be available after the show via the Thunder Online Shop.


Q: Your gig on 13 March 2005 will be your 4th (2nd as headliners) visit to Glasgow since you reformed. I've seen you before in Edinburgh and Aberdeen - are any other Scottish cities considered nowadays? Kenny, Aberdeen
D: We're still re-building. This is our third headline tour since re-forming, after a two year absence. The other Monsters Of Rock and Deep Purple bills are great as we mostly get to play in front of other people's crowds but they don't give us any indication of how many tickets we can sell. Once we know we're strong again (and there's no reason to suggest we won't be), the touring cities can be expanded, especially in Scotland. It's frustrating for some I know, but to blindly book loads of shows in different cities and end up with them all half full would spell disaster for promoter confidence and therefore our future touring prospects.


Q: Hi. Firstly I do have all 3 copies of the new single but was wondering if there are any plans to release any, or even all of the tracks released today for download through itunes or one of the other legal download sites? The only reason I ask is I don’t have a record player and want to hear ‘The Pride’. Oh one more thing, many thanks for the meet n’ greet at Birmingham, I wasn’t able to go, but my 11 year old daughter meet you all for the first time and hasn’t stopped talking about meeting you all ever since – she even sleeps with her autographed envelope under her pillow! (Bless her!!) Merry Christmas!! MagicDave
D: This isn't going to happen I'm afraid. For us to get anything on iTunes takes 6 months, and we hadn't recorded the song 6 months ago. We quite simply can't do everything with perfect timing, we don't have the resources, or the hours in the day. It's hard enough doing what we're doing. I'm afraid you'll have to go visit a friend with a record deck, and or wait until February when the LP comes out.



Q: Good luck for the single release on Monday, I am looking forward to seeing the band back in the charts on Monday and on tour in March. If Anti-Watershed Wrestling can be of anymore help then let us know, it seems alot of the wrestlers were also Thunder fans and will be buying the single next week and coming to the tour.  My question, I know all of Thunder's UK chart positions over the past 15 years but I have always wondered how the singles fared in other countries such as Germany, Japan, US, etc. What is the highest chart position you have had and where? Any way of getting a list? Good luck for next Sunday guys, your success is very much deserved! Stu @ aww.org.uk
T: Hi Stu - I'm glad that the AWW event went well - thanks for the support! As for international chart positions for the band, I'm afraid that we don't have that kind of information. Sorry.


Q: Not really a question just a big THANK YOU!!! for a fab night at Wembley on 13th. The show was fantastic, and considering it  wasn't even your crowd, the atmosphere was amazing. It was the first time I'd heard the new single too, and I have to say it sounds like one of your best so far!! Me and my sister thoroughly enjoyed the show and we can't wait to see you again in March '05 when hopefully we'll be lucky enough again to meet up after the show and have a laugh. Although we've been fans for 14 years we'd never actually been to a meet and greet before and so were curious to see what it's like; it was great!! Enjoy the rest of the tour (I'm sure you will) and good luck with the single, I'll be listening out to the top 40 countdown... love and hugs, from 'The dancing "bookend" sisters' (Ask Ben to explain!!) Maria Savva, Hertford
B: I am very pleased you had a good time and if you dance like that again you have to come back afterwards - just to sit down and rest. Now are you the left bookend or right bookend....?


Q: Hello Chaps! Firstly, thanks huge amounts for a marvelous set at the Deep Purple gig, Wembley - a little short, but that was expected seeing as you weren't the headliners and there's not alot I can say about Deep Purple, except very disappointed. Anyway, my 30 minute Thunder fix will keep me going till the Crimbly Party! Thanks for signing my I LOVE YOU t-shirt (cheers Harry, cheers Harry, cheers Harry, cheers Harry, cheers Harry, cheers Harry! LOL!) - made my night, and as always it was a pleasure having brief chin wags with you all. Talking of chins, where did Ben's goatee go? I thought it really suited him - ho hum.
Anyway, my question....... Are all your albums recorded in the same key which you play them live? My parents have just bought a rather sexy electric piano doobrey dob, I'm still a little rusty, but I'm desperately trying to pen down the notes of 'Numb' onto manuscript (for my personal pleasure only). Ben, have you decided which key 'Numb' is in yet? You did say you'd let me know ;o)
Good luck with the single - VERY excited about this one - it's gonna happen, I can feel it in me water! See you soon! Cathy (Pids), Norwich
B: I think the crew packed my goatee away in the truck one night and I couldn't find it the next day, it may have eloped with one of Harry's wigs. The songs are generally played live in the same key as they were recorded, there are a few exceptions but they are rare, that's why they are exceptions of course. Yes I have decided which key Numb is in and I'll give you a clue care of Baldrick from Black Adder: "It's a big blue wobbly thing that mermaids live in"


Q: Hello everyone, Just wondering if when you are on tour you get together with the other groups or group to discuss the audience or venue or what you are up to personally. I know that Rhino from 'QUO' think you rock and should be more recognised for example but do you hang-out (not the window) with the other rockers. David Lloyd, Wrexham
B: Thunder have always been a sociable lot and so we will always have a chat with the other bands on the bill. Some bands do and some bands don’t, it’s a personal choice.


Q: Hi Guys. A couple of short questions for ya! As it is that time of the year again have any of you ever had a visit from the other side? Are there any plans to gig in Belfast again or will we have to think back to the limelight gig all those years ago. Steve, Belfast
B: I've never had a visit from the other side, but I've had a few from the other half. I must say I would welcome the chance to play in Belfast again, the audiences are quite magnificent. I remember a particular unplugged acoustic show that was completely riotous, just like a full Thunder show but with a smaller electricity bill.


Q: I've just booked tickets for the Shepherd's Bush Empire - and now ( amongst other things) have something to look forward to in 2005. In this climate of gloom and doom what are you looking forward to in 2005? Angela Burrows, Surbiton
B: A huge hangover brought on by News Year Eve celebrations, oh and all that touring and album stuff the others mentioned.
L: Touring the UK in March!!!
C: Having read Danny's answer to your question, I have to agree with him - you really shouldn't pay too much attention to what the media choose to bombard you with. If you decide to live in constant fear of terrorist attacks and other catastrophic events (which is what they would have you do) your life will be miserable, as will the lives of those around you. But it's your choice - smile and the world smiles with you, as the old saying goes. On a more mundane note, I'm really excited about next year - the new album is, I feel, the best we've made since I've been in the band, and the increasing popularity of rock bands with younger fans puts us in a very good position. The tour in March will be an interesting one.
D: Whilst I agree the news in general appears to be quite doom laden, I'm sure it's more to do with the way the media reports it, than the news itself. My approach is to keep an eye on the news most of the time, but if it starts to get me down, I just withdraw and step back into the nicer things in life (family, sport, books, good company etc) and ignore it all. You can't carry it all around baby. I'm looking forward to the chart position for the single at the end of Nov (not 2005 I know), and the release of the new LP in Feb. It's always exciting to get the reaction to a new LP. Next year will be a good one for Thunder.


Q: This isn't really a question but I just wanted you to know that THUNDER have made my life 1000 times better than it would have been without you, as a young songwriter your music has had such a huge inspiration on me and I hope to come to every show I can from now on and bring all my mates with me to show how brilliant you are!!! Cheers. (ps. is it true Ben used to date men?) just kidding! Adam Thistlethwaite, Lancaster
B: Glad to hear it and it's true I used to date men; I found cutting their heads off and counting the rings the most accurate method.
L: Thanks for your support Adam. Ben has never dated men, only ladyboys........


Q: As some of your songs are really romantic I thought I would ask each of you what song you would choose for your first dance at your wedding and why. Let's see who the true romantics are! (I am getting hitched next year.) I really like "Better Man" and "Love You More than Rock and Roll" but it doesn't need to just be your own songs.) Thanks Guys. Anna Macpherson, Glasgow
B: Wedding? Me?... what a strange concept - The song would have to be "Another One Bites The Dust" for obvious reasons.
L: I doubt if I will get married but my favourite romantic song would probably be 'God Only Knows' by The Beach Boys.
C: I must admit, Better Man would be my choice for a first dance, but there's something a bit incestuous about playing your own band's song at your wedding, so our choices were No-one Can by Marillion (wife's a big fan) followed by Dromen Zijn Bedrog (for the Dutch guests) followed by Robbie Williams' Feel.


Q: Had a listen to the Total Rock interview - how many plugs for the website, DVDs, T-shirts and of course the new single? Nice one! Best of luck with the new single. Thinny (as you are probably the one in the know) what's the current record for highest chart placing - am I right in thinking Better Man was the highest charting single? To the banD: So what's on your Christmas list this year - apart from a good chart position for the single? James Vincent
B: A Stretch Armstrong and a Ferrari F60
L: An iPod...
C: You're dead right - a good chart position would be the best christmas present ever. Apart from that, I'll be asking Santa for some more equipment for my home studio, a new bike, a Scalectrix, Lego, a Johnny 7 gun (did you see that on Jonathan Ross?) an Action Man, an Etch a Sketch and some Silly Putty. Please.
T: You're absolutely right James - A Better Man is Thunder's highest charting single so far, peaking at number 18 in February 1993.


Q: Saw you at the NEC last week - excellent, but sadly short set. I was fortunate to get a meet and greet pass and it was great to meet you guys. Whilst talking to Ben, he said that the Cambridge Corn Exchange is a good gig but a poorly run venue. My question is therefore, what are the guys favourite and least favourite gigs and why ? Personally I like the Hammersmith Odeon. Also, I thanked Luke for playing Flawed To Perfection at Cambridge last year but he couldn't remember playing it (although we did agree that they hadn't played it since 1992)- please tell me I wasn't imagining things. Looking forward to next year's tour. PS Thanks to the people who took photos for me at the meet and greet. Michael Hales, Cambridge
B: My favourite venue has to be Hammersmith Odeon as I saw so many bands there in my youth; my least favourite is Wembley Arena because it sounds so awful, both for the audience and the band - still a legendary venue though!
C: It's odd, but my favourite and least favourite are the same venue - Wembley Arena. I love it because it's great to be able to say you're playing there, but in reality it's too big and the sound is appalling, on and off stage.
D: I find it impossible to answer the favourite/worst venue question, for all kinds of reasons. I might add that Ben's opinion of Cambridge Corn Exchange may not be shared by others. I personally love playing there, and I'm sure there are lots of other acts who do too. I've checked the setlists for May 2003, and FTP was not there. The setlist for Cambridge on 24/05 was as follows:-
1.BACKSTREET SYMPHONY
2.LOSER
3.THE THRILL OF IT ALL
4.LIKE A SATELLITE
5.SHOOTING AT THE SUN
6.RIVER OF PAIN
7. EVERYBODY'S LAUGHING
8.IF I CAN'T FEEL LOVE
9.HIGHER GROUND
10.SOMEBODY GET ME A SPIN DOCTOR
11. DON'T WAIT FOR ME
12.JUST ANOTHER SUICIDE
13.SHE'S SO FINE
14. STAND UP
15. A BETTER MAN
16. DIRTY LOVE
You must have indeed been imagining it...
T: Hmm....I'm with you on this one Michael...if you look back at my tour diary from the Cambridge show last year, I have Flawed To Perfection listed.  I believe that they alternated between Stand Up and Flawed as the first encore song throughout the course of the tour...


Q: Hi Thinny. I'm looking for the Thunderwear thongs on Townsends website - but can't find them anywhere - The link in the shop isn't taking me to the page. Have they sold out? Is there anyway of me getting hold of them? Dan
T: They are still available HERE ! (Scroll down to the bottom of the page...). Townsend have just revamped their website so things have moved around a bit!


Q: I'm a girl looking for retail therapy. I've got the CD's and the t-shirts....... but what now? Any plans for more merchandise? Something that female fans would want to spend some cash on? Of course the completely fab single ILYMTRR has been pre-ordered..... if it doesn't get a good chart position I will freak! This leads me to my next question...... which chart show on Sunday 27th should the fans tune into? Do you have a preference? Anna Macpherson, East Kilbride
D: We're looking into new merchandising items for next year, but apart from a Tee and maybe a girls skinny for the Xmas show, we're not doing any more items this year. Next year's range should be great, but I can't give anything away right now. If you have any suggestions we're happy to consider them all. Any suggestion that proves to be popular would of course be investigated thoroughly. As for chart shows, I believe the BBC run down is the official one, but I feel I must inform you that it is on Sunday the 28th and not the 27th which is of course the day before, and therefore a Saturday (I'd hate for you to miss it). Keep your fingers and toes and everything else crossed, but in the meantime please keep spreading the word, and don't forget to ensure that everyone who's ordered one collects it next week..


Q: I recently met you at a meet and great and heard some guy blame you for the shape of his nose??? What's the craziest thing you've heard on this tour or this year. Steve, Sheffield
D: I think being blamed for the shape of someone's nose takes a bit of beating. How bizarre do you want to get?


Q: Dear boys, I am a recent convert to your excellent music via a close friend of mine and I need to ask you all a favour. The thing is we are coming to your Xmas gig and my friend has said that unless you play really well I won't be getting any post-show action - if you know what I mean!! So if you could try your very best (I am sure you will be fantastic) I would very much appreciate it. I am in the process of catching up on all your back catalogue and have bought 4 albums and your new single so far so I thought you wouldn't mind helping me out with this. Anyway I am really looking forward to it, the gig I mean. Thanks in advance. PS - Someone told me that we have to come in Christmas style fancy dress to this gig, is that true or are they winding me up? T, London
D: Glad to have you on board, but I'm not sure I like the idea of  carrying all the pressure of being responsible for "post show action".  We will of course do our best to help, and please let us know if we have a positive effect on the outcome. Dressing up is not compulsory, but last year a great many fans did it, and I must say it contributed greatly to the fun. I think you need to decide if this will be a plus  or a negative, given your master plan. Choice of outfit is crucial, as I'm sure you already know, if you have an agenda. I shall say no more.


Q: Chaps, Looking forward to getting my 3 singles when they are released. Those nice people at Townsend are sending them all the way to Brussels for me! A question on your tour for March 2005, on the Biebob (Belgium rock club) website it is stated you are playing there on March 20th. Is this true, as I didn't find any info on the Thunder website 'gigs' page. Hope you are coming to see us all again! Guy,Brussels
T: There are currently plans for some European show in March - however none of these shows are confirmed yet. Until you read it on this site take nothing as gospel...


Q: Guys, I was just wondering, do you have a set routine for touring? If you do, does it change depending if you're headlining your own tour or supporting someone else? Also, when you go out on your own tour, do have time to go for wander round the towns you play in, or is just a case of bus-hotel-gig-bus? Tony
D: There is a degree of routine when we tour, and it varies according to the billing and transport arrangements. Most of the time touring involves a lot of waiting around, so there is always time for a wander around wherever you are.


Q: Hi there. I would guess that this is one of those questions that will be consigned to the bin, but I was wondering why the price of gigs (in general - not just yours) is going up. I was discussing this at work the other day, and prices have gone up by 50% or more in the last 3 years. I know some of that is due to fuel prices. Have the venues started charging you more to use them? It's a bit sad all round, as where once I would have gone to see a band who i wouldn't have minded seeing, (as opposed to MUST SEE) it's got to the "no way am I paying that!" stage. Anyway - looking forward to the new album and single. Keep up the good work! Rob, Nottingham
D: The price of most things goes up over time with inflation. By extension, the cost of putting on a show goes up too, specifically hotels, transport, fuel crew wages, the list goes on. Ticket prices for some acts are extortionate I agree, and ticket agencies commissions are also helping to push them through the roof. I like to think that our show is good value for money, as we do our best to not only play the songs well, but send people away happy and glad they attended. Not all acts have this ethos. I don't think our prices are that high, compared to other acts, and when all is said and done, I guess it all comes down to a value for money judgement.


Q: Hiya guys. I was fortunate enough to be at the NEC on Friday the 12th of this month with my eldest son who is now a thunder, peter frampton and deep purple fan which at 21 isnt bad is it .....I have a question a few years ago I purchased a thunder single which at the time I played lots but have had my c.d collection stolen this is one of them I would like to replace if possible but I cant remember the title all I can remember is that it started tired and weary hope u can help ......by the way we are hopefully going to watch u at the Birmingham carling arena. keep up the good work guys. Martin Stevenson
T: "Tired and weary, fraying at the seams...". The song is called 'Love Worth Dying For' and was a single from The Thrill Of It All album.


Q: Luke, after all the mad 2005 work you guys will be doing and you get your rest is there any chance of seeing El Gringo 2 being recorded? Michael Beck, Flint
L: It's not on the agenda at the moment but in the future , who knows?


Q: Simple question, will you ever perform "Ball And Chain" ever again at a gig heard/saw it many years ago back in 1995 at York  Barbican (finest set & a bit tour)& still one of may Thunder favs, I will concede singing that track every other night on a tour tends to wear on the vocal chords... but its a cracker & should be should be key part of your setlist (9/10 years on).. like Queen doing "Tie Your Mother Down" or "Now I'm Here".. once they were in the set list, they were never dropped.. just a thought Ben, Middlesborough
L: Compiling a setlist is a thankless task because there'll always be people who are disappointed we didn't play their favourite song. This is why we try and change the set around everytime we tour. 'B+C' may well feature in the set again at some point.


Q: Whenever, I listen to Thunder songs; more than any other group or artist, I can't stop thinking how fantastic the lyrics are and how much feeling comes through when you all perform them. So it got me wondering...., and I suppose this is more geared to Luke really....When you're in a relationship and your lover is neatly wrapped in your arms, are you as eloquent and tender as some of your lyrics appear to be and able to tell them exactly what you are feeling, or do you hope that a smile, cuddle or a gentle touch tells them what they need to know and only when you put pen to paper can you really express how you truly feel? Simone, Hampshire
L: Wow.........I suppose it's much easier to be eloquent and tender on paper than it is in a real situation although I do have my moments. The thing with lyrics is you can take as much time as you like to consider what you're saying and get it exactly right and real life isn't like that. I try to be as sensitive as possible but I can't get around the fact that I'm a man !!


Q: Hi Guys. Superb set at the NEC. A question for Luke: I saw you at the Rock & Blues in the Summer (what a brilliant show!) and you played the White Les Paul most of the time. However, at the NEC you played a Flying V all night (except for the acoustic bits). Is this a new guitar or an old one revisited? Are you going to stick with it (it sounded really good)? If it's an old one, please forgive the ignorance but I only caught you live for the first time this summer and have been frantically catching up on Albums and DVD's ever since. See you at the Xmas show and the March Tour. Good luck with the single. Roy Ashley
L: The 'V' is very new. In fact I bought it three weeks before the tour. I'd never seen a left-handed one before so I thought what the hell and took it home with me. It's a lot lighter than the Les Paul and sounds very similar. I'm sure I'll play both guitars in the future according to my mood.


Q: Firstly it was great to meet you at Glasgows Meet N Greet. Cheers Guys! A piece of info was discussed with you Luke, as to the lack of airplay as regards to Dirty Love. Is it true that this was the first time it had been omitted from the set playlist? My friend and I agree with this as, even though we have not seen all your shows, it was definitely played back when you first toured at Edinburgh 16? years ago! Hope the rest of the tour goes well and see you in March at The Academy. Fiona the Dumbsrtruck Blonde, Fife
L: Yes, I think it was the first ever Thunder gig without Dirty Love. Amazing but true!!


Q: I would just like to say i saw the gig you guys put on at Cardiff on Sunday the 14th. you guys rock, your set was amazing. I just wanted to say a big thank you for being such an amazing band! when's ur next album out? Tom, Wiltshire
T: Glad you enjoyed the show!! The new Thunder album is called 'The Magnificent Seventh' and is currently planed for a February 2005 release. But don't forget that the new single 'I Love You More Than Rock 'n' Roll' is out on Monday...


Q: You say that ILYMTRR will be available in all good record stores. All good record stores in the UK, or also all good record stores in other countries, especially Germany? :-) Jonas Hamm, Germany
T: The single is already out in Germany and throughout Europe on Frontiers Records (it was released on November 5th). You can buy it online here or place an order at your local record shop (if they don't already have it in stock).


Q: Hi. Can you settle an argument? Is that a Young Chris on Paul Young's set on the new Live Aid DVD? Steve Crooks
C: I'm afraid not - I didn't start playing with Paul until 1998. I think it was probably Pino Palladino.


Q: Danny. At last year's gig at the Cambridge Corn Exchange, the week of the release of the Loser single, you promised that if the single charted you would personally visit everyone who bought it and make them a cup of tea! So the question...does this apply to the ILYMTRR single? If so, can you please advise what you preferred brand is (I know your're a tea leaves and pot man like myself) and if my budget stretches this far, what type of biccies would you like? Seriously, I have everything crossed that the new single reaches a deserved high chart position perhaps then a few more people will sit-up and take notice. Best Wishes and I'm looking forward to the new album and to seeing you chaps at the UEA at Norwich in March. Neil, Suffolk
D: Sadly the single pre-sales are so huge on this one (did I say sadly?) that I think the tea thing is going to be a little difficult to achieve... Thanks for the support, make sure you tell everyone about the single, keep spreading the word etc. The big moment is coming..


Q: We saw you in Birmingham last night and thought you were on top form..a super night. The Dean Howard Band introduced one of their songs with "This is one of Danny Bowes', I hope I can do it justice". We didn't recognise it at all ....is it one of your very early tracks or something new that you have had written for them? Marg & Tricia, Wales
D: Thanks for coming, glad you enjoyed it, I certainly did. Dean is an old friend of ours. He asked me to sing on his LP, so I did. I sang one song called What I Need. The song was written by Dean's band. The LP also features guest vocals from both Ian Gillan and Toby Jepson.


Q: So. The Rock City gig. What do mean when you say semi-acoustic? I caught the acoustic show at the London Guitar Show earlier this year and it was great, (including the Great Iron Head joke and the parking spaceman joke), Will the Rock City gig be a similar sort of thing or what? Gazz, Nottingham
D: The Xmas show will be mostly an acoustic experience, though Harry will have a tiny tiny drum kit, he will hit it with brushes rather than sticks (saving our ears), and there will be some electric guitars, though they will not be as they are in a regular "full on" Thunder live set. There will be guest singers and musicians, all coming and going for different songs. The band will be seated throughout, as will the first 150 people through the door on the night (if they wish). Come to think of it the "Plug It Out" DVD (available on the BUY page) gives a good idea of how it will be. It will be very festive, and great fun. More than that I cannot say.


Q: What size are the kids t-shirts?! Would they fit a size 10-12 female?!! Shame you don't have skinny versions of the new 'I Love You....' t-shirts. Emma Swales, Wiltshire
T: You can find this info over at the Thunder Shop. They are aimed at kids ages around 7-8.  The shirt is 44cm across chest from armpit to armpit.


Q: Saw you in Glasgow last night, as always you were perfect! Margo & I took Caroline...her first time seeing you but not her last...have been told to get tickets for March under threat of death if I don't. (Think I'll do as am I'm told!!). Don't really have a question just wanted to let you know that so enjoy the rest of the tour and we'll see you in March! Denise Donald, Aberdeen
D: Thanks for the kind words, and I'm glad you enjoyed the show. Spread the word on the single and the tour baby...


Q: Just recovered from Monday's SECC gig. Due to impeccable timing on our part we missed your first tune, pissed off Purple fans by standing then resorting to non-friendliness when asked to sit down. I can't tell you how gutted it is to only get half an hour of you guys. Still roll on March. Nice to see PF and Purple without the twiddly solos were pretty good. Steve Morse has sold his soul to other forces or is a replecant, or the ultimate advert for clean living. Finally....the question. How about a wee club gig up north. Stu Free, East Kilbride
D: Glad you enjoyed it, the early show is obviously proving to be a problem for some people, but with 4 bands on the bill, the timings are necessary, not that we have any say in it of course. In March when we tour as headliners it will of course be different. From what you write it would appear some people think it's acceptable to sit during a Thunder show, hopefully both we and you will have convinced them that the contrary is true. Can't comment on the replicant thing, seems like a nice man.. A wee club gig up north is a nice idea. We'll see.


Q: EXCELLENT show last night at Sheffield, just too short! Looking forward to March 2005 when we can get a full Thunder gig. Also it was great to meet you all afterwards, not many bands do this and it is very much appreciated!! Question: How do you get yourselves on a tour like this? Is it through a personal contact with one of the DP guys, does your promoter get you the tour? How does it work? See you in March! Kate, Leeds
D: Glad you enjoyed the show, it was much too short for us too! As to how we got on this show, we share the same agent as Deep Purple, and we have a long standing relationship with the promoter also.


Q: I became a fan of Thunder after my boyfriend introduced me to your music. He has been a fan for many years. Anyway I got a chance to see you at the rock and blues and you were all brill. I think you look very distinguished with without your curly locks. You got me thinking have you and the boys ever considered a Thunder calendar. Catch you at the Xmas party. Rock on. Cherry, Cleethorpes
D: Thanks for the "distinguished" comment, though it makes me feel old, but I am so I guess it's OK. We've considered doing calendars in the past, but with all things you offer for sale, you have to make loads in order to sell them cheap enough. At this time, our research indicates we wouldn't have enough buyers. If and when that situation changes, we'll look into it again.


Q: Hi. Not so much a question I guess, rather a thank you. Last night’s gig in Newcastle was fantastic, despite being only 35 minutes long (rather than the expected 50). Can’t understand why organisers felt they had to shorten your set (despite being the best band on the bill?). It’s not that Purple still need to prove anything, or do they? Nevertheless, did you notice that you were the only band who managed to get the people on the seated areas to stand up??? Everybody remained seated during the (rather lame) Purple show…Attended my first meet & greet. Really enjoyed the opportunity to have a few words with you guys (Danny and Luke in particular!). Thanks for giving your fans the opportunity to meet you. Just want to add you are doing a great job, and surely Thunder is one of the best live acts I know. I am looking forward to the new single, the new album and hopefully a few more opportunities to meet and chat (already got my ticket for the upcoming March show in Newcastle). Keep on doing what you’re doing!!! I might not be in the best phase of my life, but then there’s always a Thunder CD to put into the CD player… Matthias
D: Thanks for the nice words. It was a fab show for us, especially as it was clear that the majority of the crowd were not there for us. The Thunder fans did us proud as always, and helped spur us on. We have a deliberate plan on this tour to try to impress as many of Deep Purple's fans as possible, and so far I feel like we're winning. Hopefully some of them will be moved to buy the music and DVDs and come see us play in March. Thanks for coming, spread the word about the single baby, the time draws near.....


Q: As some of your songs are really romantic I thought I would ask each of you what song you would choose for your first dance at your wedding and why. Let's see who the true romantics are! (I am getting hitched next year.) I really like "Better Man" and "Love You More than Rock and Roll" but it doesn't need to just be your own songs.) Anna Macpherson, Glasgow
D: My choice would be Something Stupid by Frank & Nancy. Love that song.


Q: I recently heard that the Watford Colloseum is threatened with closure. I took my wife and son to see you there last November, and  thought it was a great venue. You lot were excellent as usual. We found the bar facilities very agreeable, and there was a restaurant where you could get fish and chips! So I was wondering what you thought of the venue, and if you have signed the petition against the closure, which I understand was being made accessible to all the artists that have played there in the past. Paul Morgan, Harpenden
D: I had no idea the place was in trouble, so I have not yet signed the petition. I found it to be a very nice venue, though when we played there I got the feeling the promoter didn't do a particularly good job of selling the show. It would be a shame if it went away, but it must be said we live in harsh times.


Q: Having taken 6 friends to the Deep Purple show on sat night to see "this band you have been going on about for ages" as they put it I have just bought tickets for the xmas do in Nottingham as they had a great time. That's there Christmas presents sorted then!!! It is advertised as an "all seated" concert on the Rock city web site but the order confirmation says it is all standing. I don't care which I am just glad to have tickets but it would be nice to know if its seats or standing. Quick second question how long after to show will the CD be sent out? Andy Metcalfe, Halifax
T: Glad you and your friends enjoyed the show. Well done for converting them to the Thunder faith. The Xmas show is not the usual Rock City show, the confusion is between the venue and the ticket vendors. Our website is always the only really accurate source of information, as it comes direct from our team. The show will be mostly standing, as usual at Rock City, with the addition of tables and chairs on the dance floor for the first 150 through the door. There is no way to reserve these seats (we've been lobbied very heavily but we have to be fair to all). Hope this clears up the confusion. The show will be mixed in January once Ben has digested all the turkey & Quality Street. It will be manufactured straight away. The CD will be sent out at the end of January at the earliest, and most likely mid February, but this is just an estimate. Please check the news page on the website, we'll update you as soon as we know what's happening.


Q: Lads, as a Die Hard fan ,went to the Shooting At The Sun tour last year and was blown away by the whole experience. However went to Manchester gig with Deep Purple (who were rubbish) and was curious as to why the gig did not meet my expectations. Did Deep purple deliberately make the sound different to make them sound better. Was it there gear? Why were we seated? I Appreciate that you were first on and it was hard to make an impact but it took about 3 songs to get the balance anyway right .Luke did you have an off day? Danny you were awesome and a true pro. Ben you were strong and were feeling the tunes .Chris you are the rock off the band but on that evening your sound was muffled and distorted. I hope that you just had an off day and don't mean to sound harsh but I left that evening with my friends feeling frustrated and annoyed. I Still luv you guys and will continue to bring my five year old lad up to worship thunder. I understand that you guys are busy but would it be possible to shed some light on your perception on the gig? Booked tickets for the xmas gig and look forward to it. Pikey, Southport
D: Oh dear, this was clearly not the show you hoped for. There are loads of factors that can affect the way bands go down on the night, and all of them are out of our control when we're down the bill (as opposed to headliners). As you mentioned the sound and production are supplied by the headline act, and with a 4 band bill, the timings are very tight. As a Thunder fan, you are obviously used to seeing us as headliners, this situation is obviously very different. The crowd was not ours so we had to work hard to win them, and we did, and considering it was the first night of the tour, I felt it went very well. I'm sorry you were disappointed, but both the Thunder Xmas show and tour in March will be very much our shows, so normal service will resume.


Q: I've just booked tickets for the Shepherd's Bush Empire - and now ( amongst other things) have something to look forward to in 2005. In this climate of gloom and doom what are you looking forward to in 2005? Angela Burrows, Surbiton
D: Whilst I agree the news in general appears to be quite doom laden, I'm sure it's more to do with the way the media reports it, than the news itself. My approach is to keep an eye on the news most of the time, but if it starts to get me down, I just withdraw and step back into the nicer things in life (family, sport, books, good company etc) and ignore it all. You can't carry it all around baby. I'm looking forward to the chart position for the single at the end of Nov (not 2005 I know), and the release of the new LP in Feb. It's always exciting to get the reaction to a new LP. Next year will be a good one for Thunder.


Q: Hiya, just a quick note to say a big thank you for a great gig on Saturday at the MEN Arena, just a pity you couldn't have played for longer! It was great to see you all again at the Meet & Greet afterwards. I noticed that part of the show was filmed & also the meet & greet, is there any chance of any of this ever being seen? Can't wait to see you all again next year. Take care. Louise
D: Thanks for the kind words, glad you enjoyed the show. We film most things we do, and eventually it will all surface on a DVD of sorts.


Q: Just a quick note , I notice on ebay that one individual has accuired 12 tickets to the 2005 tour for London. I'm going to Brum but I was limited to a maximum of six tickets. The individual has obviously got them to profit from us loyal Thunder fans. What's the bands view of this profit situation as opposed to genuine tickets from "can't goes" and is there anything to be done? Bruce Bostock
D: I don't agree with people profiting from this kind of thing, but there are safeguards in place to prevent it happening. It would appear they're not that effective, but given the nature of the process, I must confess I have no idea how to improve it.


Q: Having just got back from the MEN Arena gig, did you notice Anne in her new 'I Love You' t-shirt standing at the front of the stage? We thought you were great as usual; the best of the four bands tonight! See you at the Academy in March. John & Anne, Warrington
D: Thanks for coming to the show, and your kind comments. Yes, I saw her, and knew immediately it was her, on account of her splendid tee shirt...


Q: I know it's probably beyond your control but what are your opinions on the costs that are added to the face value of tickets prices? I went to book 2 tickets for the Birmingham Academy through getlive.co.uk and in addition to the £37.00 ticket prices they wanted £5.50 service charge and £4.95 processing fee. What a rip off, I thought!!! (not by you guys) Not to be deterred, I then logged onto Birmingham Academy's website and got redirected to ticketweb.co.uk, here I managed to get the 2 tickets I wanted for £37.00 + £5.94 service fee. This is a saving of £4.50, that'll pay for a pint at the gig!!! the tickets are now booked, look forward to seeing you at Rock City in December and then at Birmingham in March. Good luck with the single. Mick, Desborough
D: Good point, and well made. We have no control over these booking fees, but hopefully your information will be of use others. Thanks for the info.


Q: Is there any chance we could see you on TOTP with Rock n Roll if it makes the top 40? (We're all keeping our fingers crossed) Kevin, Kent
D: If we were asked, we would almost certainly do it, and we'd probably frighten large numbers of small children across the UK...


Q: Hi Guys, Sorry - two part question:
1) Great news about the single sales - I'm looking forward to my 3 editions dropping on the mat. Just thought I'd ask whether you have filmed, or are going to film, a promo video for this single? I know that you have strict budgetary restrictions, but assuming you hit top 20, (and possibly even top 10 judging by the comments) surely a promo is a must, as everyone from VH1, MTV, Kerrang!TV etc.. will then want, (and in the case of chart rundowns, actually have) to feature the song. If you have a big selling single but no video to help support it, it's shelf life will surely only be a week or two on the radio, whereas the music TV stations these days seem to feature tracks for months after release if people keep requesting themt. I noticed with 'Loser' that the video seemed to be a bit 'after the event' (please correct me if I'm wrong), and was only available after the date that the single was released, which then meant it was never really going to get played as the single was never going to sell enough copies to hit the charts after the first week.
2) I have seen some previous comments regarding your thoughts on the Queen musical "We Will Rock You". The calibre of musicians in the bands is second to none, and they are 'band' players not just 'session guys'. In the various productions around the world (UK, Australia, Las Vegas, Moscow etc..) they have members of Meatloaf, Anthrax, etc.. as well as Neil Murray from (Whitesnake, Rainbow), Spike Edney etc... Is this something that would appeal to any of the band, performing in this musical as a regular thing? (I'm sure the money is good!!) As Brian May and Roger Taylor personally audition every musician, would the thought of auditioning appeal, even if you didn't get through?? Cheers. Chris, Herne Bay
D: There is video footage shot during the summer at European festivals, it is all live performance stuff. The "budgetary considerations" as you put it are plentiful and heavy. We have spent a lot of money on originating, manufacturing and promoting the new single. If the song achieves a high chart position and/or picks up more radio airplay, we will move to edit it up asap and make it available for the TV. I must correct you on a point of accuracy. The video for the Loser single last year was shot prior to the release, the simple truth is no one in the mainstream wanted to play it. The Loser single was our first single release since we started our own label, and for reasons too boring to go into, we knew it couldn't be a big hit, so when it got to no 48 we were very encouraged. Once again it was all down to you guys, and consequently love was both everywhere and overwhelming...
We've never had a lot of support from either TV or radio, even going back to the early 90s, and it's not better now than it was then (though in general the support for the new single has been surprisingly good). Promos are expensive to make, and if you make one there's no guarantee it'll be shown, so when you take all that on board, there has to be an extremely good reason for us to commit to make a promo video for one song. It's not that we don't want to, we simply have to spend our marketing budget where and when it will do the most good.
I hate musicals. All of them, always have. Spontaneous bursting into song for no apparent reason leaves me cold and clammy. It may be a failing, but there it is... I'd be very surprised if you ever saw me in one.


Q: Do you really think it is a good idea to delay the release of the single? If radio stations are being asked to play it now, people are going to want to go out and buy it now, but they won't be able to. Obviously Thunder fans will wait, but other people new to Thunder may hear it, enjoy it, try and buy it, can't buy it and may well forget about it by the time it is released. Clare, Middlesborough
D: These are valid questions, but I can't go into a detailed response, for previously stated reasons. All I can say is there are a lot of things going on behind the scenes, but rest assured we considered the matter fully, and the problems created by moving the release date back are heavily outweighed by the possible advantages.


Q: Hi Danny, I was just wondering: Do all of the pre-orders for the new single through the web all get put onto the first week of sales? I guess it must as otherwise you wouldn't start selling them until the release date! I will be buying all formats in the first week! GOOD LUCK! See you in March! Dan Birkett, Southampton
D: Sorry but for previously stated reasons, I can't reply to this question in any meaningful way without opening us up to potential claims of chart rigging. It's silly, but there it is. Ask me again in December!


Q: Hello Ben. I've noticed that not many questions are aimed directly at you and feel I should redress the balance slightly. What do you think? Firstly, how are you? Well I hope? Keeping fit? Looking forward to the tour next week? Yes? Which instrument do you most prefer to play, Keyboards or Guitar? Cos you are most proficient at both, aren't you? I think I should stop asking questions now, what do you think? I don't want to interrupt your practicing for the tour, do I? Well, thanks for listening and I'll see you at Wembley? Do you think I'll need an umbrella, given the time of year? Or just a warm hat? Cheers. Pabs
B: No, good, what do you hope? No, yes, are you deaf? Guitar, yes, agreed, no, this is not a question, either will look ridiculous.


Q: I was interested to see that you have announced the UK Tour next year before the release of the single, I was just wondering why? If the single does really well, which it is going to do, wouldn't it be better to announce the tour on the wave of the hysteria that it's going to create and maybe book some bigger venues or leave room for more nights at each venue? Or is it simply a case of having to book the venues so far in advance that it makes this impossible? Thunder headlining at the Hammersmith Apollo would be quite something! Tim, London
D: It's down to availability firstly (venues are usually booked months in advance), and secondly by announcing now we're using the opportunity of the impending Deep Purple tour to help sell the 2005 shows. We can't take anything for granted, least of all a fantastic chart position. Assuming we did, and the single is a huge success (everything is being done, and everything is crossed), if we wait until then the chances are the availability of venues will mean the tour would have to be several months after the LP is released... This doesn't fit in with the plan (which is always several months ahead).


Q: Hi All. With the news the single has been put back because you need more copies and the recent news of the lowest ever single sales for a UK no. 1, what is the realistic chances of Thunder being in the Top 10 when the single is released? Fingers crossed for you and for us. So many people when I try to sell the band say "Thunder, nope, never heard of them". Wouldn't it be great to be able to say "Oh you know that band you've never heard of, well check this weeks chart....." ;-) Good luck! Trevor
D: The answer is no one knows how well the single will perform alongside the rest of the singles that week. One thing I do know is that you fans are doing a truly splendid job spreading the word. We've got good people working on radio and press stuff, rock clubs etc, so everyone is doing their bit. I agree it would be very satisfying to see it up there in the top 10, and us with no big record label and all. Given the pre-sales so far, it's very encouraging, and it is achievable, but we'll just have to wait and see what happens.


Q: Last week, for some bizarre reason, I found myself watching Top Of The POPS, and then the announcer mentioned a band called "Rooster", when they struck up the first few chords of the song, I couldn't help but think there was a similarity to their sound, and of course the mighty Thunder sound (or am I just going mad), I was wondering if you gents had seen that performance, and if you did, what you thought of them? Dale Gonsalves, London
D: I must say I agree with you, there's more than a hint of us about them. Mind you I wouldn't fancy being the singer's throat in 3 or 4 years time...


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