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The story of how the Riff for Status Quo “Down Down” was created

Status Quo


The story of how the Riff for Status Quo “Down Down” was created

Status Quo was formed in London, England back in 1962 and started with a more psychedelic sound in the late 60s later on being known for their indistinguishable “Boogie Rock”. One of their biggest hits is “Down Down” on their classic 1974 album “On The Level” when the band was formed by Francis Rossi (Vocals, guitar), Rick Parfitt (Guitar), Alan Lancaster (Bass) and John Coghlan (Drums).


In a radio interview back in 2018 made available by Raised On Radio (Transcribed by Rock and Roll Garage), Francis Rossi recalled how the riff for the song was written by him when they were in the United States. The lyrics were written by Rossi and Bob Young . It became the only Status Quo number one single on the United Kingdom singles chart. It spent a week at the top of the chart in January 1975. However, the single version was almost 2 minuted shorter than the album version.

The story of how the Riff for Status Quo “Down Down” was created:

“We were in Los Angeles staying in this terrible little travel lodge on Sunset Boulevard, which the time seemed by heaven. Traditionally, I would stay in a room boring and most people would be out. I was sitting with a guitar with a G tuning just messing around with the thing. And I got the entire (thing).”

“Most music you sit on acoustic guitar and you try do harden it up somehow. These things at the time you don’t realize they’re going to be wherever they turn out to be. It was enjoyable to make it. It was quite thunderous at the time and the record. People kept asking me how we’ve got so much bass on the record. But I have no idea why he have so much bass on the record. But people love it, still do,” Francis Rossi said.

I'm a Brazilian journalist who always loved Classic Rock and Heavy Metal music. That passion inspired me to create Rock and Roll Garage over 6 years ago. Music has always been a part of my life, helping me through tough times and being a support to celebrate the good ones. When I became a journalist, I knew I wanted to write about my passions. After graduating in journalism from the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais, I pursued a postgraduate degree in digital communication at the same institution. The studies and experience in the field helped me improve the website and always bring the best of classic rock to the world! MTB: 0021377/MG

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