Q & A Archive - June 2006

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


Q: Last time I saw you live before MOR in June was back in 95 (marriage kids etc). Couldn't believe you were as good as you had ever been. Went out and bought The magnificent Seventh Straight away and now 10 year old daughter listens to nothing else. How about that you've ousted McFly!! Thanks guys. Phil Thomas, Nottingham
D: That's what I like to hear! So glad you finally came back to us, and it's OK, we understand, just don't go away now, after all you have kids that need continual "Thunderizing". It's your duty as a parent... Oh and tell everyone you know....


Q: I am a massive Eagles fan aswell as a HUGE Thunder fan. When checking out the tour dates for both Thunder and The Illegal Eagles, I noticed that you have a gig for both bands on the same date (Nov 22nd). I'd like to ask firstly is this a mistake, or will you have to choose which gig you play? Jon Belton, Co. Durham
C: Ah yes - well spotted. It's not a mistake, but it is a pain. This is what happens when you work with more than one band. Fortunately there is only one show that coincides on these two tours, so I've been quite lucky. As to which gig I'll choose to play - you'll have to wait until the night to see where I am!



Q: Luke have you used a acoustic guitar at all when writing the new album this time? & can we beat Portugal? Mart, Essex
L: Yes and yes....



Q: I heard on the radio that some England fans have payed £500 to have a curry sent to them in Germany from their local Indian back home. It also said that they were believed to be 5 musicians... Admit it, it was you guys wasn't it!?! Fair play. What did you order?
Andy Shaw, Thame Oxon
D: Sorry to disappoint, but it wasn't these 5 musicians. Must have been a cheap old curry if it only cost them £500 including transport.. 
L: No, it wasn't us but if it had been, let me see...................... a King Prawn vindaloo, saag bhaji, brindal bhaji, one garlic naan and a pilau rice please........
B: Nice idea but what if they forgot the mango chutney



Q: Danny. I am absolutely devastated that my off-hand comments have wounded you so mortally. Your lengthy soliloquy's are the highlight of our days, keeping us sane and cheerful in the dull and dreary world, where light and happiness fades so quickly. When the rain is falling and all seems beyond hope...there you are, in all your talkative glory...voice of an angel, eyes like limpid pools of loveliness, cheeky, knowing smile and a very nice bum. How can I ever make it up to you??? ;-) Yours, on her knees, begging pitifully in an attempt to get back into your good books. Emma, in the doldrums
D: Sorry, but apologies, flattery and associated rhubarb are no match for the healing powers of time... The words will return one day I'm sure, but at this time I cannot say when...



Q: Hi Danny. I don't expect a serious answer to this but here we go. Can we look forward to the return of your lengthy answers in the not too distant future? And if the answer is NO!! what's it going to take to get them back? Karen, Herts
D: They may possibly return, but I have been wounded, and I guess a period of healing is required. As to how long that will be, I know not. That answer was longer than I wanted it to be.



Q: Do you fancy playing 2007 TT festival in the Isle of Man. it is the 100th year of the event and should be massive. I have a little bit to do with entertainment on the Island and also the largest in door venue, the Villa Marina. just thought of you and how much better it would have been if it was you playing this year instead of Alice Cooper! Just a thought. all the best Colin. PS. TT is the end of May and begging of June. we usually get 60000 bike fans from all around the world. 2007 will be larger than normal. Colin, Isle of Man
D: Thunder would be very keen to play at the 100th IOM TT, as we've never done it before. If you think you can influence the music decision in any way we'd be most grateful if you'd exert some positive influence.



Q: Hi there, I'm glad to see you are coming to my neck of the woods in November (Llandudno) and I'm just wondering is it the first time there and did you ever play the Deeside ice rink in north Wales which had all the top rock bands in the 80's. It was a great little venue but probably lost out to the arenas maybe in a similar vein as the Glasgow Apollo. Remember Pot Noodle isn't it. Cheers see you soon. David Lloyd, Wrexham
D: We've played the Llandudno venue once before, I'm not sure of the exact date but I think it may have been on the Giving The Game Away tour. We haven't played the ice rink. I do remember pot noodle, isn't it.



Q: Hi Guys, Any chance a "Loved Walked In" signed disc could be put together? I would love to buy this for my fiancé' for our anniversary. I will be making sure I get the Magnificent Seventh one too. Rainy, Reading
D: We're hoping the TMS disc proves popular with fans galore. If it does, we'll add other designs, and we're thinking of perhaps making them so you can personalise them with your own dedication. You'll be able to do at the time of order, but let's not get ahead of ourselves, it's only day one... 



Q: Oh wise thin one, could you please tell me who it was that made those rather lovely presentation discs? Alex, Putney
T: Sorry, it's top secret. We have to protect our suppliers from all and sundry. Why do you want to know? LMK and I'll see...


Q: Quote: "This is a limited edition presentation disc, featuring the CD and cover from The Magnificent Seventh album". Firstly, the item looks great and the price is not unreasonable. However, unless I'm mistaken, you haven't indicated how may of these will be made. Almost everything is essentially a limited edition - one day it won't be available. So, I think it's only fair to say up-front that we're making 100, 500, etc. I hope you find this a constructive observation. Axel Thomas, Marple.
T: You are indeed mistaken. As it says on the Thunder Shop page : "Only 2006 of these will be made, so here's your chance to own a future Thunder collectors' item."


Q: Hi Luke, you may (or may not!) remember I asked you what was the stand you use for playing your acoustic and you told me it was a gracie stand, well I'm pleased to announce I finally managed to get hold of one on eBay (£25 plus postage!) absolute bargain!!!! ever since my electric/acoustic has been permanently on the stand since as I play it a lot more often than when I used to, I also play bass guitar as well (having been a failed guitarist!!) and learning plenty of thunder bass!! anyway I  digress just a little, can you tell me what gauge strings you use on the acoustic? flatwound? roundwound? bronze? or normal?I am also looking forward to seeing you guys back here in Portsmouth. Sean, Portsmouth
L: I use standard roundwound light/medium guage.


Q: As both performers and fans of live music what do you think of the whole end of show "encore" routine. Given that everybody knows that bands will be back after a couple of minutes for a few more songs do you think it adds value to the show or is all a bit of a palaver? Kim and Sasha
L: I'm all in favour of nipping off for a couple of minutes. It's a breather for band and audience and we get a chance to go to the loo!

D: It's all part of the show, it's showbiz, after all the people in the crowd expect it, and bands like to come back on to rapturous applause. Nothing palaverous about that. That was short.



Q: With the success of Finland rock band Lordi at the Eurovision Song Contest, has the band ever considered trying to compete to represent GB in the finals? Lee, London
L: I met the guys (and one girl!) from Lordi last week and they were very nice. They were Thunder fans which was also nice. In answer to your question.....no.

D: No, not unless we can wear masks and lots of make up so no one would recognise us afterwards.



Q: Luke, your birthday is coming soon. What are you doing on The Big Day??? I wish I could see you and say "Happy Birthday" to you directly...but even though I am far away, I hope you have a great birthday. May your day be one filled only with fun and laughter!!! Chikako, Japan
L: Thank you. I will actually be working on the new album (which is coming along very nicely) during the day and in the evening I intend to enjoy a few cold beers with friends



Q: Happy birthday for Monday Luke, we were thinking of holding a vicars and tarts party , you in a long vicars coat!! (mmmmm) PRAISE THE LORD!!!!.see you in November p.s dont forget the spanish fly!! Ele and Patti, Derbyshire
L: Thanks for the greeting. I quite like the idea of the Vicar's coat providing I can wear something racy underneath!



Q: Question for Luke regarding the writing process: How do you approach writing songs for an album? Do lyrics come into your head and then music? Do you approach each album with a particular frame of mind? Have you always done whatever comes naturally or has a record company (in previous years) influenced your direction and writing style? You hear of songs being written for particular artists ... do you ever tailor anything for Danny or the band? Last question: do you get many songs that are rejected at the demo stage i.e. do you chaps play around with 20 or so songs per album? Do you have any of these songs that got rejected that have yet to appear anywhere? Would these be eligible for bonus tracks on Xmas releases or by the fact they're still gathering dust be best left on the shelf (in your opinion). I lied, this is the last question - you may be familiar with KISS Destroyer that was produced by Bob Ezrin. At the time, it produced a slicker sound with an orchestral feel to many of the tracks. I'm not suggesting this for Thunder, but do you dismiss the idea of ever producing a "concept" album with another producer? Many thanks and good luck with the next album e.g. "Pieces of Eight"? Axel Thomas, Marple
L: I tend to write any time I get the opportunity. I have no particular order in which I do things. Sometimes the music comes first and sometimes the lyrical idea; there are no rules. Thunder has always been about playing the kind of music we want the way we want to play it. We make records we like and hope other people like them too. I'm not capable of 'contriving' an album and even if I was, I wouldn't want to work that way. As Thunder's principal writer I am obviously aware of how the other boys play/sing when I'm putting the material together; I am also aware of that when I'm arranging the songs. The amount of songs we record depends on how many are written. I like to think I have a good awareness of what's right for the band and what isn't so by the time the boys hear it I will have already been around the artistic houses a few times. I don't like to waste our time when we're recording. Everything we've recorded since the band reformed has been released in some shape or form but in the future if we do generate material that doesn't make the cut, it may well be released at some point. I'm not familiar with the Kiss album but I do know Bob Ezrin's work, particularly 'School's Out' which is a great record. 'Concept' albums are to my knowledge always driven and inspired by the songs having some kind of common theme; I don't think the concept itself eminates from the producer. Any producer is there to get the best out of the material and the musicians and I would have no problem at all working with a producer if it was somebody we felt good about.



Q: Hey guys. Have been talking to other THUNDER fans in recent days and have to agree that from MOR and some photo galleries from recent gigs looks like a lot of gear changes have happened! First off, Ben, the Gibson Explorer - interesting choice, what's that like in terms of usage for the gigs? Next, Luke, have you had your V changed recently because it looks different to the very first one we saw you with? And has Harry got a new kit recently aswell? I also read that Chris had a custom bass made... any information on that anywhere? It was great to meet you all at Monsters Of Rock, looking forward to the new record of course and I'm gonna be there for 2 dates of the November tour. PEACE OUT. Luke M, Somewhere on Planet Earth...
H: Yes you're right. I have recently acquired a new MRX from my good sponsors at Pearl. Over the moon!!
L: No; it's the same Flying 'V' as ever.

B: The Gibson Explorer was not actually a Gibson Explorer, it was an Ibanez Explorer and the reason I was using it is a quite a funny story, as soon as I have finished mixing the new album I'll tell it. It was a very nice guitar to use and I may go and buy one, that particular one is not for sale.
C: I have had a custom bass made. It's a '65 Fender Precision relic, made by Dan McPherson. His website is www.dm-guitars.co.uk
 


Q: Where do you watch the England World Cup games? Do you prefer watching them at home with a few beers or out and about in the pubs/bars? Also, do you watch a lot of the other World Cup games? I try to watch every single game I can, preferably in the pub (any excuse!!) Stu, Jersey
H: Whenever possible I like to watch it in the pub! The expectancy.....the atmosphere.....the shirts.....the beer!! I've seen most of the goals in the tournament so far and have been following it closely. I tend to watch the highlights of the day but have managed to see a few of the live games. Obviously I want England to win the World Cup, but Argentina look a bit useful don't they?
L: Anywhere I am will do! I love the World Cup and as it only comes around every four years, I try to see as many games as possible.
D: I've been watching them pretty much anywhere I am. In the pub, at the golf club, in the garden, under water etc. I try to watch as many games as I can but some are less interesting to me than others... 
B: I've managed to watch a few minutes here and there at home whilst mixing the new album; oh how wonderful would it be to get to the pub or on a golf course or even in the garden for just a few minutes for a dip in the pool...



Q: Hi Danny, I was looking at the Monsters of Rock pictures that people have been posting on the message board, and it looks like you had a great show! I wish I could have been there... Just one question-- what is that electrical tape around your fingers for?? Fumi, San Francisco
D: Nothing glamorous. I cut three of my fingers quite badly recently, and rather than risk covering everyone in blood (gripping a microphone tends to set them bleeding again). Sticking plaster doesn't stay on when you get a sweat on, so good old fashioned gaffa tape does the job admirably (until it's time to get it off of course). The other hand was the wedding ring, which can fall off in festival situations.



Q: Of course I want you to go on pleasuring me with that voice of yours for ever, but do you have anything you could turn your hand to (as it were) when you decide to stop performing (on stage)? Do you dread aging/growing old/retirement?!! (I'm alergic to almost all perfumes too by-the-way, far worse than cigi smoke!!) And Danny, how do I get to a meet n greet? Will you lovely guys come back to the B.I.C. in bournemouth Pleeeease? Zita, Dorset
D: I'll hang up my microphone one day in the not too distant future, and to be honest I don't know what I'll do then, but I'm sure I'll think of something. Any ideas? In the interests of keeping it short I shall leave it there. There, that didn't go on too long did it?



Q: Firstly a thank you. I did send it before but I think I sent it to the contact page.. Saw you at MOR, brilliant as always, and came to the signing tent with my g/friend Kerry. [she with the orange top, who had been perched on my shoulders for virtually the whole set. haha]. Well she has major probs with her eyes which could result in her loosing her
sight in the near future, so I was especially pleased that she got to meet the boys and that they were so friendly. [she was made up that Danny said she inspired him on the day].Anyway, THANK YOU ALL again very much indeed. Will be coming to see you on tour in November at Wolverhampton. Question: My head is being turned by Roadstar, saw them support you at Norwich and again at MOR.. Will they be supporting you again on the next tour.? Andy Price, Worcester
D: Nice words and thanks for them. You were a formidable team on the day (after all she was on your shoulders). I agree Roadstar are a good band, they have a solid work ethic and I wish them well with their record. There's been no conversation with them about support for the next tour.



Q: Hi guys, I'm the greatest french fan of thunder, and play welcome to the party in my own band (I'm glad to do it). My question is : have you ever thought to shift down the tune of your songs in live (or in the lps) of one or two semi-tones to have a heavier sound or to ease Danny's voice on the higher notes, as many bands (like lynyrd skynyrd) do nowadays? Thanks, see you on a french gig soon !? Fred, France
L: The only song we've ever de-tuned specifically for is 'Moth To The Flame'. I think we did it on the recording as well.



Q: Hi guys, Great show at MOR, and contrary to other peoples statement, YOU stole the show, any way, my question is this, Where did you find your version of the Magnificent Seven theme, I have hunted high and low (and even lower) and cant find it anywhere? See you again in November guys. Dale, London
L: It's on various film soundtrack compilation albums. Try this; http://www.moviegrooves.com/shop/magnificentsevensoundtrack.htm 


Q: Hey there, delighted to hear about the new tour. went to Glasgow in January to c u, my first thunder gig. it was great. apart from that I never heard u sing a better man, instead I got a rendition of harry singing "faith, u gotta have faith" why oh why... oh how
disappointed i was. (but fair play to u harry, u sang it well lol) trust me to pick the one tour u didnt sing a better man. awk well, im goin in November and i wana hear a better man!!! :-) moving swiftly on.... the band called Rooster. there is such a resemblance to yourselves. how about you convince them to play in the UK tour this year! how great
would it be, to see the younger type version of thunder and the mighty thunder on one stage. its worth a thought...and Thinny don't shout at me, its only a wee suggestion. hehe. what u think Danny? Simeon, W'point
D: Sorry we didn't play the song you wanted to hear. Not sure what else to say, except it's been said before, and it'll be said again.. 
Rooster are a good solid band, I like them, and I'm told by those in the know that they were influenced by us in no small way (which is nice). As to us playing a show together, whilst I think it would be great, I think their label, management and agent would all hate the idea. I could go into it in depth but it's been mentioned on the board more than once that I go on a bit, so from this day forward I'm going to cut down on the length of my repl.....



Q: Hi guys, what fantastic day at MOR, I thought you were superb as usual, as were all the bands, however performance of the day, for me goes to Journey, so my Q is apart from yourselves who do you think stole the show, see you all in November. Gareth (welsh wizard), Hampshire
D: No, sorry, you're wrong, it was us who stole the show. Just us. No one else. Just us... Perhaps you should ask the same question to Journey on their site, or do they do personal Q&As?



Q: Are these the only tour dates regarding the new album or will there be more dates in 2007. Also I have just had sky fitted and I have been on men and motors looking for Hawk Kawasaki a few times. can you tell me if there are any more shows scheduled new or old as I am an avid bike fan and don't really give a s--t about thunder! as if. Colin Vale, Leicester
D: I suggest you visit Hawk Kawasaki's website for information on their TV shows. We're not planning on splitting up after the November tour, so it's natural to assume there will be more tour dates at some stage in the future. We're hoping to do another Xmas show (news later on in the summer hopefully), but we have no other tour dates arranged at the moment. 



Q: Great news about the November tour, please can you confirm yet (or even give us a hint) if there will be a xmas show this year? any idea of date? Judith, Carlisle
D: There is going to be one, and it will naturally be in the latter third of December. I'm afraid we can't announce any more details until September at the earliest.



Q: GUTTED!! I can't come and see you guys at Milton Keynes tomorrow night as I have a gig myself!! My question is: Have you ever had to miss out on any event in your life because you had to play a gig, and where do you draw the line between Thunder/other gigs and personal life? Andy Shaw
D: Band and personal life commitments clash from time to time. Sometimes the band thing wins, sometimes it doesn't, but it's always been the same, it's a bit of a never ending juggling act. To be honest it happens less these days as we're more in control of what we do, but when it does we have to make a choice and hope it's the right one in the long run.



Q: Hi Harry, my wife was wondering why it is that you always seem to wear your dark glasses when on stage, is it the glare from the lighting or some other reason? Paul, Gillingham
H: The glasses do help with the glare from the lights on stage, but in the early Thunder days, I wore them and I was told they suited me. Ever since I've worn them; in fact you could say they have become a bit of a habit!!



Q: Without wanting to be presumptuous and assume there'll be a Christmas show this year, if there is one could I recommend the Half Moon venue in Putney, London? I recently went there to see the rather good Miles Hunt and throughout the gig I couldn't help but think how great a Thunder intimate show would be in there!! Have you ever played there previously? Alex, London
D: Thanks for the tip on the Half Moon, I agree it is a most splendid venue. I fear it may be a little small for the Thunder Xmas show (for we need to satisfy the demand). Whilst I've seen bands there over the years, I've not played there, but I know Harry has, and I'm sure Chris must have (he's played everywhere).



Q: Luke, did you bring any Spanish fly back from your holidays???? Ele and Patti
L: Ha ha ha..........now that would be telling!!


Q: Have recently converted all my Thunder albums to my ipod and think the B-side on "I Love You More Than Rock 'N' Roll", think its called "Love is an easy word to say", is fantastic. So I guess my first question is, any reason why it didn't make the cut for the magnificent seventh!?! Also, have you guys thought about doing another Raw, Rare and the Rest style album to incorporate such great tracks such as these and other B-sides!?! Mark, Tonbridge
L: I guess we felt the song didn't fit the album as well as the songs that made it. I think it's a bit early to make another 'outtakes' type album. Maybe in another ten years.......


Q: OK boys, think on... I was recently informed by a witty soul (?) that if I was a car I would be an Alfa Romeo - nice to look at but unpredictable (obviously she doth protest on both accounts!!). So, on that basis what car are you and why? Feel free to answer each others! Fay, Leicester
D: I'd have to be an 80's Mercedes SL. Not that quick anymore, compared to the newer ones, but still very precious to those who appreciate quality from a bygone age....
B: Do Smart Cars make a model called the Arse?
L: Probably an 70's style Rolls Royce Corniche - unnecessarily flash and very thirsty.........


Q: I'm surprised this hasn't came up before, my question is how did you feel about the death of George Best, were you surprised at the worlds reaction and the almost state funeral that was given to him and the fact that they are now naming airports after him, I personally think not enough can be done to remember such a great talent but should serve as a warning to anyone no matter how gifted. Lee, Belfast
H: I was truly saddened when George Best died. And I was not surprised at the reaction then and since then. He was an exceptional talent and I unfortunately I never got to see him play on the park. Just old TV clips. The state funeral and the renaming of the airport is well deserved in my opinion. However....I agree. His life and his ups and downs, should serve as a warning to others who are exceptionally gifted.
L: I was fortunate enough to see Bestie play when I was a young lad and he was very special indeed. Football, like music, does have the ability to make people's lives better for a few moments here and there and George should be remembered as someone who did what he did brilliantly. Like many gifted people he was flawed in other ways but I'd rather an airport was named after him than some faceless bureaucrat or politician.

D: I agree with you. He was one of the best football talents the world has ever seen, simply staggering, and as far as I'm concerned he deserves all the plaudits and airport naming and everything. There'll never be another like him, so hopefully no one will go through what he went through either. It's easy to say you make choices with your lifestyle, drinking etc, but in his case it's not so black and white. He was the first football superstar and no one knew how deal with it back then. He paved the way for others, in as much as the lessons learned from his career have undoubtedly helped players who've achieved big success very young. Having said that I'm sure he enjoyed almost every minute of it...



Q: What do they think of the 'official' England song by Embrace and what in your opinion is the best football song ever written? Kim and Sasha, Wirral & Sheffield
H: It's not bad but I doubt if you'll ever hear it sung on the terraces. My fav has to be "Three Lions".
L: The Embrace song is ok. It's a very difficult thing to write a song about football without it being a series of clichés. My favourite would have to be 'Three Lions'.

B: Awful and there has never been a good football song written.



Q: Daft question I know, but what are your favorite sweets? either from childhood or present day? Emma Price, Sunny South Wales
H: Has to be anything Haribo! Especially the sour ones-Think they're called "Tangfastics"? To be honest I tend not to buy them because they're a bit naughty and I don't want to spoil my athletic figure........Ha ha!
L: I used to love a Sherbet Fountain when I was a kid or a pack of Refreshers.
D: Fruit pastilles. Can't suck them for more than 10 seconds, have to chew...
B: Never really been a big sweet eater, but who remembers Spangles, Bar Six and Aztecs? Bazooka Joes, Black Jacks and Chipsticks - oh yes, and all those visits to the dentist.



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