READ ABOUT SLADE'S CRAZEE NITE
- IT'S YOUR CHANCE TO JOIN
THE BOYS ONSTAGE ...
AND WIN A PRIZE
'We won't make
any money out
of this tour'
says Noddy ...(to Rosalind Russell)
SLADE'S next British tour, starting April 19 in Bradford, is going to be a labour of love. For the band reckon they'll actually lose money and will have to subsidise their concerts, so that British fans can see them. Not only that, they have to set aside money to cover damage to halls and that can mount up. Noddy says it cost them £4,000 in bins after the Earls Court concert last year.
"It's not wilful damage, it's just caused by kids standing on the seats. £4.000 was quite low considering there was eight thousand people there We won't make any money out of this tour. There just aren't any halls big enough. The cost of hiring halls has gone up, we're carrying 10 tons of equipment and a road crew of between 12 and 15."
The show will also feature a brand new light show, being brought from the States, and all the concerts on the tour will be billed "Slade's Crazee Nite"
"So many kids come dressed up like us anyway, we thought we'd run a competition:' said Noddy. "We'll pick out about 10 kids as they come in. and at the break they’ll come up onstage and we’ll find a winner. We though we’d make it worthwhile for them. The winner will come backstage and maybe get something like a cassette recorder. It'll be the usual party scene."
"We haven't toured here since last June, before Don's accident."
Even something like the cost of petrol going up is going to affect the on - road expenses of the group quite considerably.
"I thought the silly thing about this budget was the petrol increases. I haven’t studied it too closely but it seems to me that the working man put this government in and it’s the working man who gets hit hardest.. I didn’t vote - we were in Australia - because I haven’t got any strong political convictions. We heard about the election results when we were basking on a beach in Australia, so it didn't worry us too much."
From the beauties on Bondai Beach (or wherever Slade were) they went straight to the mysteries of the East. Japan, I’m assured is the cleanest country in the world. I’m amazed by this pre-occupation with cleanliness until I discover the reason for it.
"They have these wash ‘ouses, y'see, where little Japanese ladies scrub yer back for you. We had a scrub-down twice a day…”
Well what about Japanese style wash ‘ouses for Wolverhampton Would they be just as alluring with British ladies?
"I'm sure British girls would he just as good." said Nod "I think I'll open "
"We had to learn to eat with chopsticks:" said Don. "Dave gave up and walked out of the restaurant to look for some 'real food’.”
Everyone bought loads of camera equipment and cassette recorders. Jimmy lea, wearing a fistful of silver and amethyst rings he bought in Australia, demonstrated his recorder and told me he’d taken rolls of film with his £500 worth of camera and none of it had come out.
Hill brought back a spare tyre. He was busy trying to fit it under the waistband of the while satin trousers he was wearing for 'Top of the Pops'. He’s been nicknamed ‘The Adjutant’ because of the scale-effect jacket he was wearing. It's a bit like a kilt with no front but very spectacular.
What did they think about missing the streaking craze while they were away?
"We didn't miss it - we were in America when it started there." said Noddy.
So who was going to be the first Slade streaker?
"We've had them. The Roadies - Swin and Robbie streaked down a road in Wolverhampton last week at 3 o'clock in the morning. Swin wanted £20 to do it but I got him down to £2. Swin only had his boots on and Robbie had one sock on. They were going to streak across the pitch at the match last Saturday, at half time, because the TV cameras went there. But they changed their minds.
"Now they’re thinking of organising a streaking tour. Streak to the Houses of Parliament, streak to Buckingham Palace, places like that. And have a tour manager that keeps your clothes for you and arranges the venues…"
Slade's own tour may be only a little less spectacular. They’ll be featuring their new single, Everyday, in the act. It’s a departure from their usual sound. Did they feel they were forced to make some kind of move in a new direction?
"No, we thought it was a natural progression from the Xmas song That sold a million in three weeks. The new single has already sold 240 thousand on the album. We felt it was a nice change."
After the British tour, Slade head for the Slates again, where their records are not selling with the speed they do here. But where the audiences seem to be very similar.
“It's amazing the stuff we get," said Noddy. "I've been given gold watches and rings, I can't understand how they can afford it. They must have spare time jobs, but when I was a kid I could never have afforded to do that for everyone. It means a lot to us. They know they might never meet us, but they do it all the same."Mad
Being loved like that makes up totally for any criticism Slade might get from the Press. At first they would get upset by a bad review but now they say they don't even read them.
Manager Chas Chandler was reading this week's music Press, and in particular a review of the new Slade single.
"I don't even know what this bit means," he said as the others crowded round. "They're mad."
"Maybe there should be people to review the reviewers." suggested Don Powell. Maybe it wouldn't be a bad idea at that.
"They dress up there, just the way they do in England, And we've started to get the knickers and bras thrown on-stage,"
I always wondered how these people managed to get their knickers off in the auditorium. without attracting too much notice.
"Oh, they bring special ones with them to throw, They are all embroidered with messages!"
In the 'TOTP' dressing room Don Powell was admiring an embroidered velvet birthday card herd just been given - although his birthday had been in September.
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