Squeeze’s Chris Difford is on the road with a different kind of tour – one which will see him read from his autobiography and share stories from his time in one of Britain’s most successful bands.
Alongside that, he will be offering an acoustic set – all part of his Some Fantastic Acoustic Book Tour.
Chris is on the road with Boo Hewerdine with dates including Hailsham Pavilion on March 18.
Chris will tell audiences about key events in his life in music from his book Some Fantastic Place and perform some of his biggest hits acoustically alongside tracks from Pants, a best-of album featuring songs from a stage play created by Chris and Boo a couple of years ago. Both album and book will be available to buy at the show.
As for the title of the book, also of one of Squeeze’s most popular songs, it sums up his experiences perfectly, Chris says: “It is one of the best songs we have ever written, and I am also very proud of the book. The book is not about the band really. It is about me. After 25 years of sobriety, I thought it was a good time to celebrate that sobriety, but really it is three books in one. It is about my early life and the middle book is about being in Squeeze and then it is about what is going on now. I have been writing it for five or six years.
“The sources were diaries, but it can be very fluid and selective. It is a very emotional read. If you want all the factual stuff, you can go to the Squeeze website. This is much more the emotional journey, and I am very pleased to have laid down my sword. The memory just flows. I really just enjoyed the process of writing it.”
A different process to writing lyrics. Over the course of a 13 album career with Squeeze, it was clear from the beginning that Chris had few peers when it comes to smart, pithy lyricism.
His kitchen sink-drama style has drawn plaudits from fans on both sides of the Atlantic, while his influence is keenly felt today. The likes of Lily Allen, Kasabian, and The Feeling have all recognised the debt they owe to Squeeze’s music and Difford’s way with words, while journalists were moved by his creativity with Glenn Tilbrook to dub them the new Lennon and McCartney.
As Chris says: “Lyrics are really the personality that is within me, a need to write what I really am and to share stories for the stage.”
The tour is also the chance to put the focus on the album Pants: “I wrote it a couple of years ago with Boo, and it came out at the same time as a new Squeeze album which took priority. The Fancy Pants record just disappeared.”
The last ten years or so have seen the great Squeeze revival with the band getting back together again: “I think it has been great. When we came back together again, we were like the best Squeeze tribute band ever, but since then we have done a couple of new albums in quick succession, and we were able to move on, which has been really gratifying to do. A lot of that is down to (co-writer) Glenn’s production and his eye for detail. He is very thoughtful when it comes to going into the detail and getting it right.”