Music preview: Chas Hodges to perform without Dave

15:05 08 May 2012

Chas Hodges

Chas Hodges

Archant

There are certain words which have been a pair for so long it is hard to imagine one without the other: bangers and mash, Mark’s and Spencer, Chas and Dave.

Which might explain why there is something slightly unnerving about Chas – of Chas and Dave – playing with a band which most definitely does not include Dave.

Chas Hodges and His Band are performing at The Old Queen’s Head, Essex Road, on Thursday – but don’t fear, Chas hasn’t abandoned the classics which first made the duo a household name in the late 70s.

“I do all the Chas and Dave stuff, plus I’ve got my new solo album out so there will be one or two songs from there,” he says.

In fact, not performing with Dave – who retired following his wife’s death two years ago – has meant Chas can now open up the archive into life before he was one-half of a pair.

“I was with a lot of people before I was with Dave,” he explains. “I was on the road with Jerry Lee Lewis, toured with the Beatles. So I tell one or two stories from that era.

“When I was on the road with Dave, I couldn’t talk about this stuff, about before I was together with Dave. I find I’m enjoying it.”

And there must be a lot of stories to tell – after all, Chas first began playing as a session musician in 1958.

For example, the time the life-long Spurs fan ended up on the same record as Stevie Wonder, who added keyboards to a track after he heard it being mixed in a New York studio.

But while they might share credits – Hodges on bass and Wonder on keyboard – on the album cover, they never met.

That might be rectified this September though, when he and Dave – who comes out of retirement sporadically for the big events – to support the internationally-famous artist at Bestival.

“I don’t know if Stevie Wonder realises – I might tell him.”

But before he has a chance, Chas has a a lot of gigging to do: the 68-year-old still tries to gig two to three times a week.

“The older I get the more I enjoy it,” he says. “It is part of my life – it always has been. It’s like sleeping and eating. If I don’t do at least one gig a week I feel there’s something missing. I go away happy [from gigs] and everyone else goes away happy.”

Doors open at 7.30pm. For ticketing information call 07943 847 035 or visit www.theticketshop.biz.

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