Q & A Archive - July 2007

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


Q:
Hi there, just wondered of there was any chance of any of the bands videos or live footage being made available on iTunes or would demand for this need to be much higher in order to justify it? Sam, Norwich
D: They've been offered them but iTunes have been a bit twitchy about taking our videos so far. It may have something to do with the occasional dodgy/dubious sexual content... We're hoping to be able to offer video downloads via a newly revamped Thunder Shop at some stage soon, but it's taking an age to develop, so don't hold your breath...


Q: Hey guys, as an add on to my last question, Luke have you ever thought a song was good enough for an album then your girlfriend has given you second thoughts? Steve, Wrexham
L: No. Opinion is everyone's prerogative but I wouldn't tell her how to do her work and she wouldn't tell me how to do mine.


Q: I'm sat here at work browsing 'Youtube' as another method of procrastination, and have stumbled across several old thunder acoustic sets (I think they were filmed in Japan - correct me if I'm wrong) Do you have control over any of this footage and if so will there be any plans to release it in a kind of 'THE RARE, THE RAW AND THE REST' DVD??? Simon Walker, Sheffield (the dry bit)
T: The footage in question has already been released on DVD...but only in Japan. It appears on a bonus disc that comes with their version of the 'Flawed To Perfection' DVD. This was released by EMI and therefore the band have no control over this footage, which is pretty much the case with most TV appearances from over the years - so any DVD released featuring this stuff is unlikely...


Q: Hi Luke, I was watching Scenes Of The Behind today - I love the recording diary that you kept. I was just wondering if you'd consider doing a similar thing in stages and putting it on youtube for the fans to see how everything is coming together for the next album? It would be great (and give us a sneaky peak at new songs). Dan Birkett, Southampton
L: Hmmm...I'll have to think about that one. Maybe we'll look at doing something like that before the next album.


Q: Danny once said that the band were gutted that "Once In A Lifetime" never made it onto an album. Are there any other Thunder songs, whether B sides, demos, etc that you wish had made it onto an album or single? My personal favourite is "The Fire Is Gone" and think it'd be a great inclusion at the next Xmas gig, hint hint.......... Graeme Johnston, Kingswinford, West Midlands
D: To be honest now we have the control, it doesn't tend to happen any more. It's one of the plus points of running your own label.


Q: Hi, do you ever remember any of the old liggers who used to hang around in the 80's. Especially round the time when you recorded at Great Linford with Andy Taylor? Sez, Brizzol
L: I remember having a lot of fun. We had a great time recording the first album and quite a few people dropped in for a drink or seven. I'm not quite sure I'd remember all of them though!


Q: What do your wives, girlfriends etc think of the music you make? do they pay much attention to it? Steve, Wrexham
L: My girlfriend likes some of what we do and is quite vocal when she doesn't like something. I listen to everything she says and obviously I always agree with her as she has never been known to be wrong about anything...ha ha ha.....
D: I think the kindest way to put it would be to say that my wife is interested up to a point, or maybe agog with indifference. I'm not sure which. Let's put it this way, she doesn't buy the records.


Q: Hey guys, quick one. Danny have you considered growing the silver locks since its been cut short & Luke have you ever, even for a second, considered cutting all your hair off? Steve, Wrexham
L: I cut my hair very short in the 80's and it was a terrible mistake. Girls were not interested in me at all! Seriously, it has got a little shorter  over the years and will probably continue to do so unless it all falls out of course!
D: I have considered it a couple of times, in fact I have done it here and there in non busy times over the past few years, but to be honest I always get fed up with it and cut it off before it gets very large. The problem is my hair is curly once it gets past a certain point, and has a mind of its own, and once I get to the stage where I have to start applying products to reign it in, I simply lose interest.. Call it hair laziness if you will.


Q: Happy Birthday for Saturday Ben! My Birthday falls in August (every year amazing enough) and because of school holidays, have never had to go to school on my Birthday. Sadly my school years are many years ago
 now, but as a result I always take the day off work as I personally feel it's wrong to do any sort of work on your Birthday. After all that rambling, my question is have you/do you go to work on your Birthday or like me, feel it should be made illegal to exert yourself in any way other than for self gratification (oo-er missus) on your special day? Beth, Enfield
B: Many thanks for the birthday felicitations, I agree wholeheartedly and nobody should have to work on their birthday unless it's a job involving making my birthday better. Members of Thunder often work on their birthday,
playing shows or in the studio but we generally make sure they have a splendid time and more often than not there's a cake and a small glass of sherry available.



Q: If one of you guys won the lottery would you use a chunk of it to try to really push a Thunder album & single in everyone's face & ears or would you keep it all for yourselves? Steve, Wrexham
B: I would use some of the winnings to promote the Thunder name around the world but all from my large yacht in the Virgin Islands. Is there a marina at the Cambridge Festival site?
D: If I won the lottery, like most my age, I think I'd invest wisely, then retire and enjoy what was left of my life. Having said that I'm not going to win it, as I don't do it, so that's that cleared up.


Q: So how does it feel? I was out driving yesterday afternoon listening to Radio 2 when knock me down with a feather, that orangest of orange but greatest (for the following reasons) radio DJ Mr Dale Winton played Thunder!!! It was his Pick of the Pops show and he was covering 1990 and he played Gimme Some Lovin'. I nearly crashed the car. For what it's worth, he said you were a great band ..... but there you go, Radio 2!! Who'd have thought it. Thankfully I averted the crash and recovered sufficiently to turn the volume full blast, throw back the soft top and drive through Leeds singing and shouting "Thunder! On Radio 2" at the top of my voice. Kate, Leeds
D: It's always a strange feeling when we get played on the radio, I guess it's because it's such a rare occurrence when it happens. No matter, loads of bands get played on the radio and disappear the next year. I've always liked Dale Winton by the way. Such a nice man, good to his Mum, never married.. Glad to hear you didn't crash, and you probably gave a lot of people some pleasure ("look there goes the famous nutter from Leeds who sings Thunder songs out loud in his car").


Q: Hello Chaps, I am taking a break from my Thunder CDs and currently listening to the 'Rainy Changes' compilation by Steve Marriott (which I love, love,  love). I recall reading somewhere that you (may not have been the plural you) were influenced by Steve. If so, when and why? And what is your favourite Marriott work ? Thanks for your answers - I am a huge fan of you all. Lesley Stewart, Wiltshire (Pearl Of The South)
L: Danny and I saw Steve Marriott play in a tiny pub back in the seventies. It was with his very occasional band called 'Blind Drunk' and I can confirm they definitely were! He had one of the great British blues/soul voices and was and still is very underrated in my opinion. He could also sing pop songs with a great sense of style and humour. I don't have a particular favourite.
D: Steve Marriott was a major influence on us, both as a singer and composer. His work speaks for itself, and we've covered some Small Faces tunes over the years, but I particularly love the live Humble Pie stuff.
I saw him in a band called Blind Drunk years and years ago in a pub in London. They were very "medicated" so it came and went a bit musically, but the good bits were fabulous. It's one of the most memorable shows I ever attended.


Q: Being a lefty like yourself I was considering buying a Les Paul in the next couple of years only to find out that Gibson have ceased production of any left handed guitars (apart from custom shop) and are taking no orders for individual guitars. Bearing this in mind you may want to source some before supplies run out! What do you think of this injustice? Also you have recently been using your Flying V more. Why is this as I think that your Custom sounds better? David Hewett, Warwickshire
L: The 'V' is due to the fact that I suffered with back trouble a few years ago and it's a much lighter guitar than the LP custom. I still use the Les Pauls when recording. I didn't know that Gibson were stopping making lefties but I do think it's a shame. I have all the guitars I need really so hopefully it won't affect me too much.


Q: Hi, Fab night on Saturday in Chepstow - pink wellies will now be my gig going footwear of choice!. Thanks for lots of jumping around tunes to keep us warm, if not dry. My question is did you stop on to see UFO and The Answer on the Sunday? and finally a plea - any chance of hearing Empty City live again? - I'm a big fan of your more dramatic outings. Helen, South Wales
L: We headed back to London on Sunday so we didn't see UFO. 'Empty City' will I'm sure be played again at some point but when exactly it's hard to say at the moment.


Q: Okay, Thinny, just read your answer abhout the GTGA booklets. Now, being the smart a~~e that I am. I reckoned there was a second edition, however I'll be blowed (???) if I can find it. Can you, in your right royal, thin, wisdom, establish where we may be able to get the second edition, and also, what apart from the booklet, is the difference between the two discs. Are there any different tracks or do we  just not get the same fine message from the band? Your expertise, knowledge, and wisdom, as always, is anticipated. Martin, Glasgow
T: I'm a bit confused as to what you mean by second edition. As stated in the other Q&A, there were 2 versions in the U.K. - The Anniversary edition and the Standard edition. The Standard booklet featured the lyrics and the Anniversary edition featured loads of pictures and clipping from throughout the band's career so far. The Anniversary edition had the message from the band on it. The Standard version didn't. The disc on the Anniversary edition was pink, while the Standard version was blue. Then there was the European Anniversary edition which came in a slipcase and also included the CD single 'You Wanna Know (Just Another Suicide)'. And finally there was the Japanese edition which had a slightly different front cover, two bonus tracks ('The Only One' and 'Wonderland') and the Disc was Silver. Hope that clears it up...


Q: Hi guys. I've finally dried out from the Chepstow gig, and what a show it was, too. Many bands can entertain, but only Thunder can make torrential rain seem enjoyable. May I also say what a great setlist it was too, especially What a Beautiful Day, which sounded better live that on the CD. Anyway, on with the question(s) Thinny mentioned, in answer to Colin Cowan's question that Lyrics are all available on the CD sleeves, yet there is one CD that I have that contains no lyrics (Giving the Game away 10th Anniversary Edition). Are the lyrics printed in the original versions CD sleeve (in which case I'll go and buy that one too!), or were they not printed for that album... If not what was the reason for this? Keep up the good work guys, it's always a pleasure to see you play. Scott, Chepstow
T: The original idea was that the Anniversary edition of GTGA was to include both the regular booklet and the anniversary book.


Q: Hi guys. I've finally dried out from the Chepstow gig, and what a show it was, too. Many bands can entertain, but only Thunder can make torrential rain seem enjoyable. May I also say what a great setlist it was too, especially What a Beautiful Day, which sounded better live that on the CD. Anyway, on with the question(s) Thinny mentioned, in answer to Colin Cowan's question that Lyrics are all available on the CD sleeves, yet there is one CD that I have that contains no lyrics (Giving the Game away 10th Anniversary Edition). Are the lyrics printed in the original versions CD sleeve (in which case I'll go and buy that one too!), or were they not printed for that album... If not what was the reason for this? Keep up the good work guys, it's always a pleasure to see you play. Scott, Chepstow
T: The original idea was that the Anniversary edition of GTGA was to include both the regular booklet and the anniversary booklet, but someone at Eagle Records got confused and only included the one booklet. So therefore, yes, those that have the standard version do have the lyrics...


Q: Hi guy's, just wondered if there's any plans yet for an xmas show and if so do you know where it is likely to be and will any announcement be made soon? Paul, Rainham Kent
T: Yes. Yes. Soon enough. ;)


Q: Thanks again for a cracking gig at lovely wet chepstow. you cheered me up alot again. shame I cant make Cambridge next month. but definitely see you in November/December. thanks for all the support bands too. seeing Toby again was great after seeing him with Little Angels. well done again. Graham, Portsmouth
D: Thanks for the nice words, it did go rather well, all things considered, but it's a joint effort between the band and the crowd, so well done to you too. I'm assuming you forgot to ask your question..


Q: Hi guys - can't wait to see you at the Academy in Glasgow again. My question is this - are there any plans to expand the discography to include lyrics to the songs. I know it can be a huge undertaking to have to re-type all the lyrics and post them on the site, but I'm sure if you asked the fans for their help we would quite happily do the typing for you. Colin Cowan, Glasgow
T: We have no plans to do this at the moment. It is indeed quite a task to undertake and to be honest, although I know in the days of digital downloads this doesn't mean as much, but all lyrics to the album tracks are available exclusively in the CD booklets. For the meantime at least, we'd like to keep it that way...


Q: I was at the Chepstow Castle gig last night, absolutely amazing show, but there seemed to be an awful lot of cameras there, both still and video, just wondering what that footage will be used for as would be good to see it.  Katie Bruce, Leeds
D: The Thunder show was filmed by a Welsh music video crew. The footage will be studied with a view to a DVD possibly being produced at some stage in the future, but the weather didn't help things, so it's by no means certain. Until we know how it turned out it's impossible to say what will happen with it. They also filmed Toby Jepson, but I don't know what his plans are for the footage.


Q: Hi Danny! Firstly, great gig at Chepstow on Saturday - worth getting pneumonia for! I noticed you were using a Shure radio mic at Chepstow, rather than your usual Sennheiser. Also, when I saw you guys at Wolves in November you used a mic with a lead - first time I've ever seen you without a radio mic during a normal Thunder or B&M gig. Were there any particular reasons for these changes? I ask cos I'm a singer in a band and looking to invest in a radio mic, and wondered whether you'd recommend a Shure or a Sennheiser, or indeed something completely different? Cheers! Graeme, Kingswinford, West Midlands
D: I'm glad you enjoyed it, we did too. Your eagle eyes do not deceive you. I am not Mr Technical in these matters, but I shall explain as best I can. The Sennheiser mic is a truly fabulous mic, but it's designed to accept a lot of information, unlike the Shure SM58, which is legendary for getting the voice, and at the same time avoiding the other annoying sound stuff floating in the air (like drums). Both work very well, but perform best under different conditions. In big shows where there's a lot of space in between everything the Sennheiser (which I'm told has a
> Neumann capsule in it) works very very well, but the Shure appears to work better in smaller venues where there is an increased risk of audio spill. The cleaner the information getting to the sound man, the easier it is to control the overall mix. If I am ever on a cabled mic, it is usually because the radio is either broken or not working very well. I prefer a radio mic, as it leaves me free to roam around and do my thing, and not tie the rest of the band up by the ankles. Sennheiser make a great range of mics (and radio transmission systems - can I have the cheque now please?), and the Shure SM58 has always been up there too. My recommendation would be to try out as many as you can, and choose the one you like the most, and or the best one you can afford. After that it comes down to what comes out of your chops...


Q: Have just been listening to Laughing on Judgement Day and wondered who it is playing the Hamlet cigar advert piece of music on the piano at the end of "Baby I'll be gone" and who is it patiently trying to help by saying the chords? Beth, Enfield
B: As far as I can remember, and believe me remembering that particular episode is very difficult as you will see, it was Snake and I after a hard days recording. Having drunk a couple of glasses of sweet sherry I thought it would be a good idea to teach Snake to play Bach's - Air on a G String. Why I decided it was a good idea, I cannot tell you but it all made perfect sense at the time. Due to Snake being slightly the worse for drink he soon gave up uttering the immortal words "I can't do this now"


Q: Hi Ben. Congratulate you guys for that lovely concert last Saturday in Switzerland.  It makes so much fun seeing you guys on stage getting a taste of real Rock N' Roll. You're just the best Rock Band ever!! At least in my opinion. So I was wondering if you did change your Hammond? In March you played not the same one as far as I remember. I went to see you at Z-7, Switzerland. I also gave you guys a CD there, a blue one from a band called NICE. So if you did listen to it (I know you probably get thousands of CD, but maybe you did listen to that one! :-) ) I'm wondering how you liked it? So thanks for answering these questions. Have a good one and as Neal Young used to say: Keep on rocking in a free world! Cheers! Diego, Ennenda, Switzerland
B: And who are we to argue with your opinion... The Hammond was hired in for the show but was the same model as my Hammond which I used at the Z7 show. Mine is a B3 split into two so it can put it in a flightcase with a 147
Leslie.


Q: Long time noo questions, hope you guys are doing well. I was listening to the radio the other night & it made me think.What does Elton John mean by "Rolling Like Thunder under the covers"? Mart "Metalfartz", Essex
B: Must go back to the days when pastry making was outlawed and we all had to do it late at night in bed
L: I think it's probably a sexual metaphor or perhaps 'thunder under the covers' refers to the aftermath of a particularly searing vindaloo. Either way it's a great song.


Q: Hi guys! Saw you last night at Chepstow castle! Just had to take the time to tell you what an awesome gig that was - despite the weather!!! You guys were really on form - especially Danny who did a great job working the crowd. Excellent support from Toby yet again, but my question to the band concerns the other support band Rattlesnake Remedy. Did you get chance to see their set, because as support goes they really blew me away. Is there any chance of them supporting you again this Nov/Dec? Richard, S Wales
D: Glad you enjoyed the show, we did too. It was so fantastic to see a crowd completely unaffected by the horrendous rain. If anything it seemed to enhance the atmosphere. I didn't get to see RR as I was eating my dinner at the time they were on, but I've heard the record. I can't say right now if they'll get it, but I can say that they're on the list of possibles for the UK dates in November/December, but it's a long list, and the decision won't be made for a while yet.


Q: Couple of things peaked my curiosity whilst listening to your back catalogue recently. Obviously it goes without saying that you are all incredibly talented with your chosen instruments. I just wondered which Thunder song is the most tricky/taxing for each of you? Are there any that you tend to leave out of the setlist due to the musical logistics of performing them live? I note that 'once in a lifetime' (some of your finest work Luke!) contains some particularly high moments for Danny and is rarely performed live, seen you do it once in 16 concerts I've attended. Andy, Sheffield
B: There are a few that are virtually impossible to recreate the album version live, on the second album tour we did a few songs that were a logistical nightmare for Luke and I, we had to use twin neck guitars to cover all the
guitar parts.
L: OIAL isn't particularly hard for Danny to sing. I just feel it works better in an acoustic format. There are a few songs that we don't physically have enough hands to perform during a usual Thunder show but we're gradually working our way through these tunes at the Xmas shows where we are augmented by other musicians.


Q: Ben & Luke, The photo you had taken with Bruce Forsyth, How did you meet him, has he heard of Thunder and if so what does he think of the music. Did you ask him to do a number with you on stage..haha. Steve, Southampton
B: You can blame a band called Reculver for that photo, two of the members are related to Bruce Forsythe and they are friends of mine, I also recorded them a few years ago. They are well worth checking out as they are a great band, may even see them on tour with us one day. Be nice to see them, to see them...
L: Brucie's grandson (called Luke, funnily enough) plays guitar and sings with a band called Reculver and Benny engineered some of their very early demos a few years ago. Jolly good they are too! We met the Great man at a  showcase gig the band played last year at the Gibson venue in London. He  was exactly how you'd expect him to be; very funny, cheeky and thoroughly  charming. I don't think he was familiar with Thunder beforehand but after we'd been introduced somebody pointed out the large photos of Benny and me adorning the walls where we were standing. 'Marvellous!' said Brucie as only he can say it.


Q: Wimbledon 2007 has arrived!!!!!! As a long time great tennis fan I'm thrilled and delighted about the
this year's outcome of the most special and important grand slam!!!! Any tennis fan within the band???? Is tennis a popular sport in great Britain????what do you think of Rafael Nadal, last year's runner up and federer's biggest menace on every surface??? I'm sorry, but have you ever attended, being Londoners as you are, the All England Lawn club to enjoy the tournament???? I don't know if you know Dan Bern, an American songwriter, but he wrote
a song about John McEnroe and a dream he had about him playing McEnroe at the u.s. open!!!!!very funny!!! Did you ever think about writing a song dedicated to a certain person, apart from k.t. tunstall's the girl is alright (or maybe welcome to the party, which could be dedicated to Tony Blair as I think I read years ago...)????? Who could be that person????? Thanks again!!!! Diego, Spain
B: I used to watch tennis in the glory days of Björn Borg and John McEnroe but have lost interest in it now so I'm afraid I rarely watch anything but the final at Wimbledon.
D: I love tennis, and played a lot as a kid. Sadly I've developed a lower back problem which prevents it nowadays, but I watch it whenever I have time. I've never been to Wimbledon, though I would like to. I'm not familiar with Dan Bern and the other question is a Luke question rather than one I can answer. Phew!


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