Roxy revival gets under way - Thu 9th Aug

Roxy revival gets under way
09 August 2001

The Gold Coast Bulletin, 09 AUG 2001, By: MICHAEL DUFFY

BRYAN Ferry, the suavely suited crooner of Roxy Music, once
described himself as an 'orchid born on a coal tip'.
The son of a coal miner from Durham, England, Ferry and his band sprouted from unlikely beginnings in 1971 to add bright colour to the musical landscape, inventing glam rock and inspiring a generation of youth to move on from Beatlemania to a more arty style.
Thirty years ago Roxy Music, resplendent in make-up, spangles, platform shoes and feathers, burst onto a music scene recording landmark songs including Virginia Plain, Love is The Drug, More Than This, Avalon, Dance Away and a cover of John Lennon's Jealous Guy during its 13-year career.
Ferry says barely a day has gone by since the group disbanded in 1983 that he, saxophonist Andy MacKay and guitarist Phil Manzanera have not been asked when they will 'get Roxy back together' and tour.
Finally, with a 50-date tour of four continents under way, the group has an answer to please Roxy Music's legion of fans.
Ferry, whose voice is as stylish and crisp as his trademark suits, says he has been 'taken aback' by the positive reaction to the tour so far, which has taken them through Europe.
"We expected to get the usual 'rock dinosaur' criticisms but it hasn't
happened," Ferry says.
"Our last show, a week ago, was at a youth music festival with 65,000 young people and if we had any apprehension about the tour, this dispelled it.
Some people have waited a long time for this ... We just hoped people would remember us this time around."
Remember they have, with even the music press - which Ferry remembers often 'savaged' Roxy Music in the '70s - giving glowing concert reviews.
Saxophonist MacKay says he had 'mixed feelings' about the reunion.
"Things are different now, I had to practice to be able to play a
full-length concert again, but it was good for me. One thing I'd forgotten about is working with Bryan is that he's a perfectionist and his attention to detail is immense."
For this tour, the group has included dancers and a selection of Ferry's touring band. Former member Brian Eno, who left the group after For Your Pleasure in 1973, was never a consideration, says Mackay.
"Not really. We knew he wouldn't do it anyway. He hasn't been performing for a decade now."
More than anything, Ferry, who has pursued a solo career in the interim -with a new album including a collaboration with Eno due out in January -seems thankful for the positive reaction to the music.
"But this tour has given me the best reviews I've ever had."

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