Chris Dif­ford

Squeeze are one of the head­line acts at Corn­bury’s ever-pop­u­lar mu­sic fes­ti­val this sum­mer. Katie Jarvis asked Chris Dif­ford how it is that, four decades af­ter they started out, he and Glenn Til­brook are still re­ally cool for cats

Cotswold Life - - EDITOR’S COMMENT -

Katie Jarvis meets the man be­hind the le­gendary band Squeeze as they head for Corn­bury Fes­ti­val

Read­ing Fes­ti­val, 1978. The stand­pipes of two years ago are drip­ping into six-pack-fud­dled me­mory, but here in Read­ing the sun is still burn­ing with an in­ten­sity that scorches every nos­tal­gic sum­mer of youth. In the UK charts, Frankie Valli has po­litely out­groved the Com­modores’ Three Times a Lady from the num­berone spot with a disco-beat Grease. On the Rich­field Av­enue fes­ti­val site (spe­cial week­end tick­ets £8.95), there’s not a poo­dle-skirt in sight: the bub­blegum pink of Ry­dell High School has been stomped into the mud by the an­gry black­ness of an an­ar­chic Doc Marten. (“Grease” is most def­i­nitely not the word.) A crowd of 15,000 watches as Paul Weller smashes up a sound-sys­tem and Jimmy Pursey weeps as groups of pogo­ing, safety-pinned Mo­hi­cans smash up each other. …And then, on the Sun­day, Squeeze play.

“Com­pare and con­trast,” I say to Chris Dif­ford, as if in­tro­duc­ing an A-level topic (Com­pare and con­trast the life of a ptero­dactyl to that of a modern-day

bird). “Take me back to a Squeeze gig – say, Read­ing 78. How you felt on stage. What your emo­tions were… Then on to, I dunno [the choice is in­fi­nite], Glas­ton­bury 2016. Com­pare and con­trast.”

Be­cause 40 years on, long af­ter the punks had ag­gres­sively safety-pinned the holes they ripped through so­ci­ety; long af­ter that old di­nosaur, An­ar­chy, be­came ex­tinct, Squeeze are still soar­ing: the lat­est al­bum, The Knowl­edge, was re­leased last year to great ac­claim, ac­com­pa­nied by a tour of the US; this year, it’s Aus­tralia,

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