Squeeze at Chichester’s Real Ale And Jazz Festival a couple of summers ago was one of the great Chichester gigs of recent years.
Now Glenn Tilbrook - one half of the great Squeeze song-writing engine room with Chris Difford - is back in the area, this time solo and unplugged.
Glenn takes in The Brook, Southampton on Wednesday, December 14 (02380 555366) and the Komedia, Brighton, on Monday, December 19 (0845 293 8480) on an extensive acoustic tour
The first half will be Glenn on his own; the second half will see him joined by Simon Hanson (who drums with both Squeeze and The Fluffers) and also Chris McNally, featuring percussion, acoustic guitars, ukeleles, Indian harmonium, bass and iPads in a completely-new show.
As well as performing songs from his back catalogue, Glenn will be showcasing new unreleased solo material and music from The Co-Operative (Glenn’s collaboration with Nine Below Zero).
“What it means is that there will be the chance to explore the facet of simplicity,” Glenn says. “I have been working a lot with Squeeze over the last couple of years and have recorded with Nine Below Zero. Those have been quite electric records.
“This time I will be going solo acoustic. Practically since I started writing, the emphasis has always been on the songs themselves. There is no change in what comes first, but on this tour I am looking at much lighter instrumentation.
“Quite a lot of it will be new songs. I am writing songs specifically for the tour.”
And the great news is that technology means the result will be an instant new recording; you will be able to buy the night’s concert on the night.
Glenn has never been an artist who’s been fazed by the thought of a show being recorded; all it means is that there will be rather more structure to the show: “There will have to be definite anchor points throughout the evening.
“With the new songs, I am working really hard to be audience-inclusive, to be writing songs that are relevant. About the strange time that we are living in. There is such a lot going on with the economy and the way we are governed. I am not going to be shoving my finger in people’s faces. But I just want it to be relevant.”
Glenn comes to it all on the huge high of the massively-successful Squeeze reunion tours of recent years: “It feels like the best Squeeze. And I mean no disrespect to past. But Squeeze has got more spark, more vim and vigour than we have ever had. The reason is that we are working hard. Squeeze had become complacent. You don’t realise it is happening. But you see it in retrospect. But the main thing is never getting comfortable.”
Which Squeeze did?
“The main thing is just to have a break every now and again. But the reaction this time has been amazing. We have never had a reaction like it before in terms of ticket sales. It’s very powerful stuff.”