the squeeze reader

Packet of Three Squeeze Picture of the Week:

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Squeeze gets mention in the KC Star

Writer Brian McTavish ostensibly wrote this for Glenn Tilbrook's show at the Hurricane in Westport (in Missouri I guess?). He attributes Squeeze lack of success to the lack of a bona fide frontman, so, he suggests, go see Glenn --- Squeeze's non-bona fide frontman. Thanks for the plug, I think? I wonder if this guy can tell the difference between Glenn and Chris. If he can, you can't tell it from this.
Today in Kansas City: Squeeze time at the Hurricane
The Kansas City Star

What held back Squeeze? As much as anything, the lack of a bona fide frontman.

Without a showoff to shine the spotlight on during Squeeze's not-quite-mainstream heyday in the early '80s and beyond, the band's demure singer/songwriters Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook were left to focus on producing great little pop songs.

It wasn't enough to make Squeeze a household name. Yet the little British band that couldn't quite get over the major commercial hump left behind a string of indefatigably catchy ditties that sound just as fresh and intelligent today.

After years of trying to make it happen - the last Squeeze album came out in 1999 - Difford and Tilbrook have more or less taken to solo careers, although the door has not been officially closed on the duo or a Squeeze reunion.

Until then, any pure pop fan would do well to catch Tilbrook and his current band, the Fluffers, at 8 tonight at the Hurricane, 4048 Broadway in Westport. Bob Walkenhorst opens. Cover is $15.

To reach Brian McTavish, arts & entertainment writer, call (816) 234-4766 or send e-mail to

Chris produces London band Thee Unstrung

The Huddersfield Daily Examiner reports that Chris Difford is producing London punk band Thee Unstrung, which the paper describes as Thee Unstrung as "a working class group of 19-year-olds offering aggressive, attitude-filled raucous punk, inspired by self-doubt, depression and rejection." Sounds cool.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

extra glastonbury tickets sold out

According to Glastonbury Festival organizers, an extra 3,000 tickets released earlier this week sold out immediately to people on a waiting list. Organizers added the tickets to raise money for tsunami victims' relief. The Telegraph reported earlier this month that 112,000 tickets sold out in less than three hours. I hope some Squeeze fans get to go see Glenn and Jools. I hate to think those are all Kylie Minogue fans.

Oh, and confidential to Michelle: the Kaiser Chiefs are also playing on the mainstage. I mention it now, so when you hear about them, you'll remember I mentioned them on my blog! KC's single "I Predict a Riot" is fun, though I don't like it as much as I liked FF's "Take Me Out."

Glenn is "Critics' Pick" in St. Louis

Christian Schaeffer of the Riverfront Times in St. Louis, Mo., tells people to go see Glenn at Mississippi Nights this Saturday, but says "Squeeze wasn't anyone's favorite band, but who actually disliked it?" Oh, I think you're very wrong, Mr. Schaeffer. Maybe he was trying to be funny? He likes "Goodbye Girl," so I'll give him a pass.
Glenn Tilbrook & the Fluffers
Saturday, April 30; Mississippi Nights (914 North First Street)
By Christian Schaeffer

As the principal singer and co-songwriter in Squeeze, Glenn Tilbrook provided the people with tight, melodic, life-affirming pop for many years. Squeeze wasn't anyone's favorite band, but who actually disliked it? Just think of the songs, man, the songs: "Black Coffee in Bed" is the best soul song that never was, "Up The Junction" turns on a dime, and "Goodbye Girl" takes a crappy drum-machine samba beat and turns it into solid gold. Onstage, Tilbrook is as affable a chap as you'll find, honoring requests for all the old favorites and peppering the set with songs from his two solo albums. Dust off your copy of Singles -- 45 and Under and bask in the rays of pop's goodness.

Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15; call 314-421-3853 for more information.

Editor's note: I usually don't like to cut-and-paste the article, but I was having trouble loading the original page. I was able to read the article here.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Chicago/Milwaukee: Midwest dispatches from Michelle

Frequent Squeeze Reader reader Michelle has sent us a review of the Chicago and Milwaukee GT and the Fluffers shows. Michelle says in the review that Glenn love us, but you folks in the M.W. are lucky! Someday I'll see Glenn with a band....
The Chicago show was hands-down, the single best Glenn show I have ever seen, Squeeze or otherwise. He and the Fluffers have melded into one beautifully orchestrated organism.

The band took the stage after 11 p.m. and played until about 1. I don't have a set list - I was too swept up in the moment, I did get pictures though, and I'll be sharing those shortly. Our sartorially-challenged hero was wearing some jeans that were badly torn and frayed at the bottom, red Keds and his gray button-down shirt. The hair is at an optimal length!

His voice is 99% now - he's avoiding some of the highest notes, (splitting up was never our inten-TION) but generally, he sounded terrific and powerful. He was chatty, he was fun, he did "Mussels" as the opening number of the second half of the set, while roaming through the crowd - the crowd of very 400 excited people. I can't say enough how electric the atmosphere in that club was. Stephen was simply magnificent. I don't have a large enough vocabulary to describe what he does. Suffice it to say, he had everyone mesmerized.

The Band did all the favorites, plus These Boots Are Made for Walking. And as for Maidstone, he was very polite in explaining that the band doesn't know the song. I managed to get him to admit (after the show)
that maybe it would be prudent for the band to learn it.

We hung out at the bar until we were booted out at 3:45. The drinks were free-flowing, and we got to chat for a long time. I got to spend time with 1-L and her wonderful husband Glen, their friend Cindy, Jackie the amazing pastry chef, Lauren, Josh, Blair - Rodney... lots of friends showed up, lots of familiar faces. It was great seeing everyone.

As for the west coast - he, first of all, asked me to explain to all of you that he LOVES YOU and appreciates your support. He said that it wasn't possible for him to do a tour of the whole country, and since he'd been there last in October, he hoped everyone would realize it wasn't a slight - he just wanted to hit some places that were easy to drive to. New York to California just isn't possible right now.

Glenn is starting to work on some songs for the new album with the Fluffers. As for those demos - it seems that things have been slowed down because of the record company (Universal, I think he said? I'm not sure, please correct me if you know the answer) He's got permission to release them now, and in return, he's given his permission for the entire back catalog to be re-released. He said he was being very meticulous about finding the right bonus tracks for these, and that it would be awhile.

And now for the bad news.Ok, not "bad", exactly, but just kind of "sad" in a selfish kind of way. Glenn isn't coming back to the US until next year. With solo tours of Japan, Australia, and summer concerts in the UK planned, he's got a full plate. He wants to get back into the studio. I've been used to seeing him 2x a year now, and I'm spoiled. But you know, he's got a life too.....

And now, onto Milwaukee.

Milwaukee is a beautiful city - very green and although it is on Lake Michigan, as is Chicago, has a very different look and feel. I generally like it there, and I have always been impressed with how much I like the clients I work with from Wisconsin. And they have these adorable accents there, and say things like "ode hay". Someday I am going to stop at the Mars Cheese Castle and the Bong recreation area.

My review is going to seem like a little bit of a "dis", and I'm sorry if it does. But after the wild roar of Saturday's show in Chicago, I think I would have been disappointed by almost anything.

It wasn't the Fluffers. It wasn't Glenn. They worked their hung-over tails off and sounded brilliant. It was the crowd. The venue was set up with tables and chairs, and nobody wanted to dance. I've never been at GT&F show where people just sit and clap. He invited us to get up and dance, and nobody took him up on it.

I knew Glenn had his work cut out for him when Jim Bianco, the kick-ass opening act, started making jokes to lighten the mood. He got a big "woo hoo" from the audience when he said (jokingly) that he'd been to church in the morning....

When Glenn came on, I tried hard to stay in my seat, but it wasn't possible.. I got up to dance and an 18 year old came with me. I begged and bribed people to dance, but they just thought I was on drugs. And I wasn't - I swear. I was completely sober. I too was hung over. Glenn finally broke the ice by the second act, by going to the back of the venue where the bar was, and he and the band performed on it, with Jim Bianco and his trio joining them on accordion and the tiniest little trumpet I have ever seen.

They switched to playing from 45's and under - working fewer of his solo stuff in the mix. He did "Walk Away", which literally blew some of this tiny crowd of about 40 out of the water. For Up the Junction, I had company up dancing at the front, but it didn't last for long. When the Band left the stage to get ready for the encore, people jumped out of their seats and begged for more. Simon ended the show by diving into the cymbals - which, in turn, fell off the stage and onto my body. No harm, no foul, but it was funny. They loved him, but I don't know. They had less energy. Maybe that's because it was a Sunday show, or maybe because the crowd was a bit older. About half stayed after to meet and greet the Band. One guy was so blown away by one of Glenn's amazing solos that he rushed the stage to give Glenn a high five. During Take Me I'm Yours, Stephen broke into a full rendition of "Funky Town".

Simon left for London a few hours after the show to go be by the side of his very expectant girlfriend. He's being replaced by a guy from Nashville, but I didn't get the details. Simon will be back shortly, and is anxious to be on the road with the band. Thank goodness for Chris the bus driver (sweetheart of a guy, by the way who introduces the Band with a mini stand-up routine) and the manager (whose name escapes me, which is sad, because he was absolutely lovely and so kind to me) - they held everything together and took off that night for MN.

I invite anyone else who was at either show to fill in the gaping holes in my report.

Exhausted, overjoyed, and depress-edly yours,

Great review, Michelle! Also, Lily also has a review of the Annapolis show. Happy reading!

Sunday, April 24, 2005

belfast telegraph gives christopher holland four stars

The Belfast Telegraph said Jools' much younger brother, Christopher Holland (who isn't even 40 years old yet), "plays like Jools and he sings uncannily like Glen (sic) Tilbrook! On his latest album, Butterfly Effect with his Cosmic Harmony, the younger Holland proves he is unashamedly old-school pop." I guess listening to Squeeze evolve since the age of about 11 or 12 has an effect on you. (I know it has to me, though that's not reflected in my musical talents, I'm afraid.)

The Jools World site has a further description of the album: "Recorded during the summer months of 2004, Butterfly Effect is a joint collaboration between Chris and Lisa Covington, an original member of B Sharp, the band Chris formed whilst still at school. A hugely infectious and contemporary soulful pop album with 1960s/70s influences but a definite ear to the future, Butterfly Effect comprises 13 self-penned songs and a range of vintage keyboards."

no wait, I'M the dumbass....

Thanks, Rob, for reading my last post. You are indeed, right, and the Allenby Solfest is the same as Solfest. I'm a dumbass. Strangely, the Solfest people don't want to tell us when Glenn will be playing, because, "too many festivals where tickets are sold for individual gigs/sessions and this encourages visitors to 'cherry-pick' the big name acts without supporting the festival as a whole, often leaving insufficient tickets left for people who want to stay for the duration of the festival." I guess you can't have an entire festival overrun with Shane MacGowan and Glenn Tilbrook fans.

Friday, April 22, 2005

glenn the workhorse

It's sort of lame that I didn't notice this before, but I scrolled down to Quixotic's confirmed shows and I realized that Glenn already has shows booked for the 27th and the 28th that bank holiday in August. So, I guess that means he's playing Solfest on the 26th? Three gigs in a row, and just before his 48th birthday.

But what about Shane?

Glenn gets a mention and a picture in the Whitehaven News in an article about the upcoming Solfest, which the paper says will be on Aug. 26-28 at the Tarns Farm, Near Silloth. (Um. So they say.) The headliner actually is Shane MacGowan, formerly of the Pogues, but "successful solo artist" Glenn definitely gets more column inches.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

chris and glenn get brief mention in fox "news"

Roger Friedman of Fox "News" wasn't wild about Coldplay's new single, saying it sounded a lot like that ginormous hit, "Clocks." Friedman compares Mr. Gwyneth Paltrow rather unfavorably to Difford and Tilbrook. He writes:
"Speed of Sound" relies on the same piano chord progressions as the group's well-known and beloved "Clocks." Not there's anything wrong with that. Plenty of groups can play a "medley of their hits," as it were.

But frontman Chris Martin is never going to be the songwriting equal of XTC's Andy Partridge or Squeeze's Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook. Maybe the rest of Coldplay's new album, "X&Y," will be better when it's released on June 6.

PS-- I used boldface only in "homage" of that ridiculous tabloid style. I'll never use it like that again, I promise. And since Fox is the only American news outlet that refers to Michael Jackson as "Jacko," like only the British tabloids do, can I accuse Fox "News" of being un-American now?

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

What does Jools want? FAIR TRADE!

According to the UK's Socialist Worker Web site,Jools Holland was at a fair trade vigil at Westminster Abbey. He and singer Beverly Knight opened the vigil with a rendition of "A Change is Gonna Come." Pete Postlethwaite and Vanessa Redgrave also gave readings.

I haven't read anything else about this event. Has it got any other (Jools-free) write ups in the UK press?

Friday, April 15, 2005

glenn articles

No clever banter here. I need to rush to the Post Office. But, I didn't want to not mention a couple of articles relating to Glenn's tour:

The Troy Record interviews Glenn on his tour asks about the dying days of Squeeze, from Glenn's perspective. I'm not really sure who would be interested outside the extreme Squeeze fan, but that would include all of the readers here!

The New England-area MetroWest Web celebrates Squeeze, including a Glenn gig, his new album and the Squeeze: Song by Song book. (The article has the weirdest lede I've read ina while: "Squeeze's cultish fans have reason to celebrate. No, Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford aren't getting the band back together again. ") Does the mention of the book mean that it's available stateside?

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

post-script to jools and glenn at glastonbury

I just re-read my last post and thought it was a little too negative. I don't want to completely rule out Glenn and Jools playing together --- in fact, I am an eyewitness to Glenn and Jools on the same stage in 1997. In my very brief tenure as a resident of London, I saw Glenn play acoustic in a little pub in South London, I believe. The gig was also a fundraiser for a sick child and there was a raffle for her. Jools was there, he played, and drew the raffle and told a joke that I have stolen many times since, with mixed results.

So, where is this photographic evidence? Afraid I have none, as I left my camera at my house and I didn't go back for it because I didn't want to miss the bus. Of course, I never forgot my camera after that, and Jools never showed up again. Dammit!

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

xfm: glenn and jools at glastonbury

XFM has a list of acts for this year's Glastonbury Festival, which includes Jools Holland on the main stage and Glenn Tilbrook on the acoustic stage (so, no Fluffers, I'm guessing?). Nothing about the "R" word ("reunion"), of course, because they're just two acts in a list that includes The White Stripes, Tori Amos, Elvis Costello and Kylie Minogue. I'm not really holding my breath --- remember Glenn and Jools were the reluctant ones in the VH1 special.

Monday, April 11, 2005

sartorial report: jools holland edition

According to This Is London, which I believe is the Evening Standard's Web site, Jools wore a morning suit embroidered with a keyboard pattern on the inside lapel to wedding celebration of the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. This is London reports that "Jools was 'delighted' to have been asked and was looking forward 'to a fantastic day.'"

(My apologies to those of you who aren't royal watchers. I'm guessing that's probably most of you.)

Saturday, April 09, 2005

A later "Later with Jools Holland" with Glenn Tilbrook (got all that?)

In case you miss Friday night's 8 p.m. showing of Later with Jools Holland, with Glenn Tilbrook, on the Ovation channel, they are showing it again at noon, or 11 a.m. Central. (I don't think the listing says that they're showing it at midnight Saturday morning....)

Friday, April 08, 2005

from the horse's mouth: glenn dates, demo news and say hi to steve

Glenn Tilbrook's record company Quixotic Records released a list of upcoming solo and band gigs. He appears to be spending quite a bit of time in the "flyover" part of the U.S. Good for them, the need some good music too.

Quixotic also says that Squeeze demos are going to be released soon, though I think that people on the Yahoo GlennList all know this already.

From Quixotic:
Glenn Tilbrook and The Fluffers are back on the road in the US and Canada. Glenn's very nice merch gentelman, Steve, will be selling copies of the Squeeze book at the shows as well as CDs and shirts. Do go up and say hello.

The Demos are still due to be released, we are looking at a mid
summer release date now. Will let you all know when we have more

April '05
Thu 7 Jewish Mother Norfolk, VA  
Fri 8 Funk Box Baltimore, MD  
Sat 9 Rams Hesad Annapolis, MD  
Mon11 World Cafe Live Philadelphia, PA  
Tue 12 Canal Room New York, NY  
Wed 13 Downtown Farmingdale, NY  
Thur 14 Harpers Ferry Boston, MA  
Fri 15 Revolution Hall, Troy, NY  
Sat 16 Milestones Rochester, NY  
Sun17 Mod Club Theatre Toronto, ONT  
Tue 19 The Ark Ann Arbor, MI  
Thu 21 Beachroom Ballroom Cleveland, OH  
Fri 22 The Music Mill Indianapolis, IN  
Sat 23 Abbey Pub Chicago, IL  
Sun 24 Shank Hall Milwaukee, WI  
Tue 26 Fine Line Music Cafe Minneapolis, MN  
Wed 27 Vaudeville Mews Des Moines, IA
Thu 28 Knickerbocker's Lincoln, NE  
Fri 29 The Hurricane Kansas City, MI
Sat 30 Mississippi Nights St Louis, MO
May '05
Mon 2 Blue Note Columbia, MO  
Thu 5 Gypsy Tea Room Dallas, TX  
Fri 6 Antones Austin TX  
Sat 7 The Engine Room Houston, TX 
Tue 10 The Dame Lexington KY  
Wed 11 Exit In Nashville TN  
Thu 12 Rhythm and Brews Chattanooga, TN  
Fri 13 Smiths Olde Bar Atlanta, GA  

Then Glenn finishes up the tour with some solo acoustic performances:

Thu 19 Ocean City Library Tom's River, NJ  
Fri 20 Housing Works/Live For Life, New York, NY
Sat 21 Boulton Center, PAC Bay Shore, NY  

There are various shows throughout the summer, solo and band, below are the shows cofirmed so far.

May '05
Thu 26th Haver Hill Arts Centre - SOLO

June '05
Thu 9 Riga Music Bar Southend 01702 348020 - SOLO
Fri 17th Beverley Folk Festival - SOLO
Sat 25th Acoustic Stage, Glastonbury Festival - BAND

July '05
Sat 2 Sevenoaks Festival - SOLO
Thu 7 The Courthouse, Otley - SOLO
Fri 8 The Met, Bury - SOLO
Sat 9 Faringdon Arts Festival - SOLO
Fri 15 The Compass, Whitby - SOLO
Sat 23 Trowbridge Festival - BAND

August '05
Sun 21 Beautiful Days Festival - BAND
Sat 27 Allenby Solfest Festival - SOLO
Sun 28 Nantwich Folk Festival - SOLO

More to follow soon. Thanks for your continued support.

End transmission....

be our guest, be our guest!

Jools Holland --- ambassador of the Prince's Trust, TV personality and ex-Squeeze keyboardist --- will be a guest at the blessing of the nuptials of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles this weekend. I skimmed over the article in the Scotsman, and apparently the pair will also confess their sins. (I read this stuff, so you don't have to.) Also in attendance will be Tony and Cherie Blair, Sting and Mrs. Sting, Rowan Atkinson, Stephen Fry and other people that British people will recognize.

another squeeze Web page?

My fellow Squeezefans,
Two questions: 1) do I really need another project and 2) does the world need another Squeeze Web page? Yes and yes. This project will serve as a tribute to Messrs. Difford, Tilbrook, et al., and as my little experiment in cyberspace (do people still say that?). Bells and whistles will be added or deleted as we try out and discover 1) what is a pain the butt to maintain and 2) what is absolutely necessary for the maximum readers' enjoyment.

I'm considering the addition of the following features

  • Trackback
  • A notify e-mail list
  • This page's own e-mail address
  • Audio blogging
What won't change is the information mission of this page: I want to update at least twice a week, depending on how active ex-members of Squeeze are and I hope that it's at least entertaining. (Just for the record, I didn't actually write this at 7:42 p.m., but I wanted the Jools item to be the first thing you all saw!)

Thanks, I hope you like it, and I hope you visit often.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

are you cool for cats?

Squeezed, a Squeeze tribute act in Herts, Essex and Kent (suburban London?), is (or was) looking for a Chris Difford-style vocalist. I suppose knowledge of all the lyrics to "Cool for Cats" and "Slaughtered, Gutted and Heartbroken" would be a plus. If this is you, contact that band, not me, because I can't help you. Check out Squeezed's Web site, though, for a cute picture taken at a Squeeze: Song by Song book signing (in the archeology section, no less).

glenn tilbrook compliments local school of arts

This March 22 article in the Greenock Telegraph interviews Glenn, who "gave a talk" about the music business to performing arts students at James Watt College. Apparently he thinks they have a very nice facility and the article has a picture of him sitting by a mixing board, so I'm gonna guess the school also has a recording studio. I wish the article summarized for us what he actually told the students, but I guess we have to pay tuition for that! (Anybody know what he said, by the way?)