Suzi Quatro - Spring 2019

Born in Detroit, Suzi Quatro has been making music since the age of 13. After being in a group with her siblings, she took the decision to become a solo artist five years later – and she’s never looked back. With almost 20 studio albums in the rearview mirror and countless live and compilation albums, there is absolutely no sign of things slowing down. In fact we see quite the opposite. It’s an exciting time for Suzi as she prepares to release her new album No Control and readies herself for the forthcoming UK arena tour. There is a huge amount of anticipation for this new record, especially as Suzi herself says this is the best one she has ever made. Its hard to disagree with this view. No Control is a record that drives hard and is perhaps an amalgamation of everything she has learned from over 50 years in the business. We’ve already been teased with the lead track No Soul/No Control, a hugely powerful track which takes the listener on an exhilarating journey with its hypnotising arrangement. At 68 years old Suzi’s voice is as strong as ever and she shows beautifully - and without argument - why she continues to be fully deserving of the title Queen Of Rock ‘n’ Roll! With only days to go until the album is released we catch up with Suzi to find out how it all came together.

I would like to come straight on to the music. Your latest studio album No Control is released on 29th March and we have already been teased with what’s in store with the lead single No Soul/No Control, an incredible track which really takes the listener on a huge journey with it’s unexpected arrangement and big chorus. After 50 years in the business and nearly 20 studio albums you continue to maintain the very highest standards to bring your fans the very, very best. What was your vision for the new album and how has your approach to songwriting changed over the years?


My approach has always been the same, and that is to write the truth and always make the best album possible. This is my best album since the beginning. I have returned home!


This album sees you collaborating with your son, Richard Tuckey, for the first time. With Richard being a musician it’s quite surprising that this collaboration hasn’t happened sooner! How did working with Richard differ to working with other artists and how will fans recognise Richard’s influences within the music?


He has always been in lots of bands and has always wanted to work with me. Finally he was ready and he showed me some ideas. He was truly ready. He did a riff which turned into Don’t Do Me Wrong and then we started to create. He is a riff man and pushed me in unusual directions. I then started to assimilate, throwing chords in back and forth, putting a bit in here and there. A title comes pretty quick, and then I start with melody and lyrics which are really my forte. One the single No Soul/No Control, as Richard showed me the riff he said "I just kept saying to myself ‘you can’t control my soul’". That idea stuck! He is a talented boy and was able to push my Suzi Quatro buttons in today’s world. Marvellous! And he is quite certain what he wants in the studio. I produced myself, with a big hand from my son and the engineer, Mike Curtis. We make a great team!


The one thing that is very clear about your fan base is firstly that they are hugely loyal. They are also fans who crave new music from you. That’s not always the case with long-standing artists – and I would even suggest that this applies to bands such as The Rolling Stones. How does it feel to know that your fans aren’t just about nostalgia but they are also excited about your future and new music?


I guess it means that they know I am real, not an invention, and everything I do has credibility. Therefore they stick with me. I hope that’s what they think anyway! I am a published poet, and author, so my creativity is ongoing.


For No Control you’ve signed to SPV records. Many artists are turning to SPV. What is it about this label that creates such winning partnerships?


They are hands on which is unusual in today’s climate, where artists and bands are faceless and just a means to make money! Which is not what the motivation should be. They have really pushed the boat out promoting this product and I hope we have a long association. 


In April you will be performing 10 arena shows in the UK. With so much material, how do you decide the set list for a Suzi Quatro show? With tracks such as Devil Gate Drive and Can The Can still sounding as fresh and as relevant as they did in the 70s – and with them being adored by old fans and new – do you feel obliged to include them in the set every night? Also, will you be playing any of the new tracks?


I always do my hits. It is sacrilegious not to. But I also always include new material. I will be doing No Soul No Control. The problem is that on this tour it’s a short set because the are so many acts and a curfew. I do prefer my own two hour show.


You’ve been in rock for over 50 years. That’s a long time! Looking back at your 18 year old self, what would you have thought if someone told you that you would still be doing this – and arena tours – more than 50 years later?


Actually it’s now 55 years. Hard to believe isn’t it! I absolutely knew I would be doing this for a lifetime since day one. Creating, entertaining, rockin’ n rollin’ us what I was born to do!


As the Queen Of Rock N’ Roll, which new artists do you feel deserve our attention?


That’s a hard one. No bands spring to mind. Ed Sheehan is a force to be reckoned with and I am in collaboration with KT Tunstall. We have recorded 3 songs that we wrote together and will do more.

As our conversation draws to a close, we reflect on what a huge a achievement it is for an artist to still be creating incredibly strong music and playing arenas after 55 years. Let’s say that again - 55 years! Suzi Quatro isn’t just a great artist - she is iconic. The Queen Of Rock ‘n’ Roll? Absolutely 100%!


No Control is available now. Check out www.suziquatro.com for more information. In the meantime check out the video for No Soul/No Control below.