Last night we went to see The Quo Experience, a fantastic tribute act, at Stamford Corn Exchange. It took me back to a day in May 1982 when, as an excited 15-year-old, I was in the audience at Top of The Pops. It’ll give you an idea of my interest back then – on the bill playing live were Blondie, Bucks Fizz, Phil Collins…but for me it was all about Japan. David Sylvian in particular!
Armed with my autograph book I did the rounds – not difficult as the studio, and the audience, was small. It got to the point when I was getting people to sign my autograph book without really knowing who they were (shameful I know).
After the show was finished, my friends and I headed to the BBC canteen. I was going through my autograph book and 3 signatures meant nothing to me. However, the men in question were sitting at a table in the canteen, so I (with way more confidence than I actually had) approached them.
‘You signed my autograph book’, I said, ‘and I’m sorry but I don’t know who you are.’
The blonde one took my book, flicked through, and when he came to his own signature, he added ‘Quo’ and then got his band members to do the same. Rick Parfitt, what a gentleman you were. Alan and Francis too.
I look back and realise, even though you were known and feted worldwide, you took time to show kindness to a 15-year-old who genuinely didn’t know who you were.
A lesson for us all.