Chas & Dave UK Tour 2013 – Back by demand!
They pioneered the ‘Rockney’ genre with their blend of memorable songs, music-hall humour, and Rock’n'Roll. Now, due to ‘phenomenal’ demand from fans, Chas & Dave are back and about to embark on an extensive UK tour, kicking off at the Cambridge Corn Exchange February 28.
In a career spanning 40 years, Chas & Dave are, without doubt, one of Britain’s longest-running and best loved rock acts. In 2013, their appeal has never been greater or more varied. The audiences are getting younger – without the ‘boys’ deliberately trying to appeal to the youth and the older generation of fans are as happy as ever. The ‘boys’ are also a big festival draw these days, playing to thousands of delighted people at the Glastonbury festivals in 2005 and 2007 and most recently at Bestival in 2012.
Bursting onto the music scene in the 70s, they recorded exceptionally witty songs performed with a strong affection for all things English, reminiscent of many of the great Music Hall artists many years previously. In the tradition of The Kinks and The Small Faces and around the same time as Ian Dury and Squeeze, they wrote songs that spoke about life in London, using their own accents rather than the fashionable-but-fake transatlantic twang.
With hits like Gertcha, Rabbit, The Sideboard Song and Margate, they created a sound that was uniquely British and rockin’ to boot. And it’s those songs that have ensured the ‘boys’ continue to tour for over five decades to audiences across the world, enchanted by their East End charm and great song-writing.
Chas Hodges (piano, vocals, banjo, guitars) and Dave Peacock (bass guitar, vocals, banjo, guitars) began playing together in 1972. Chas had worked with the legendary producer Joe Meek, backed Jerry Lee Lewis, played with Mike Berry and the Outlaws, with Ritchie Blackmore, and also the highly-respected Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers, where he first worked with future Chas & Dave drummer Mick Burt. He then joined Albert Lee’s cult band Heads Hands and Feet before playing with Dave and Albert in Black Claw.
Dave had been equally active, starting in The Rolling Stones (no, not them!) in 1960. Spells with The Tumbleweeds, Mick Greenwood, Jerry Donahue, and Black Claw followed before the pair coined forces to go out on their own as Chas & Dave. Their debut album ‘One Fing ‘n’ Anuvver’ was released in 1975, earning critical acclaim from Radio One legend John Peel. Featuring songs such as Ponders End Allotments Club, it had a strong North London angle and was acclaimed as the one of earliest examples of cockney rock ‘n’ roll.
Their proudly-cockney vocals blended with Rock’n'Roll led them to title their 1978 EMI album Rockney.
Gertcha was the first of their eight Top 40 hits in 1979, and Ain’t No Pleasing You reached No.2 in the singles chart in 1982. The band has also contributed theme tunes for TV shows such as Crackerjack and In Sickness & In Health but, contrary to urban myth, they were not responsible for the Only Fools and Horses theme, turning the opportunity down because they were too busy.
Their contribution to popular culture was recognised by BBC Four recently with an hour-long documentary detailing their career and influence. The critically- acclaimed show was based around the 2011 tour and featured input from Jools Holland, Phill Jupitus, and Pete Doherty among others.