The phone rang the other day and wouldn’t you know it, it was Stu Cook, the bass player for Creedence Clearwater Revisited, on the line.
Dude said he appreciated the attention we gave his band last time around—Weekly Alibi talked to Doug Clifford last summer when the band flew in for a show at the Route 66 Casino—and so he wanted to tell me all about the last tour Creedence plans to do, about this last chance to see the band together.
Cook was flying to Brazil later that day to commence the tour and I found out they are stopping by Route 66 again on Friday, Nov. 8, before we moved on to other subjects. What follows is a summary of the talk we had about a legendary group of musicians, the effects of 25 years on the road, the future and a world that needs your vote more than it needs your record-buying dollars.
Weekly Alibi: Hey, is this Stu Cook, the bass player for that one jungle music band, Creedence Clearwater Revisited?
Stu Cook: Yes, it is.
Stu, you’ve reached August March at Weekly Alibi. What’s going on?
I’m headed to Brazil.
What’s going on with the tour?
We go back to South America every two or three years and rip it up. They love Creedence.
Since this is your last tour together, are there any shows stateside?
There are a couple of US shows.
How does that feel? You’re ending something, after all. I heard this will be the last time you all play as an ensemble.
That’s right. It’s all true. I’ve been fortunate from the very beginning. This band has enabled us to bring the music to a lot of people, to the world. In the past, we thought it was time to hang it up, but this time, it really is time to put it to bed. Twenty-five years of the Revisited project have worked out great for us, and for the fans. [Then] there will be time for other things in life. I haven’t even thought about doing other musical projects.
Are you reflecting at all on the legacy you guys have—Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, countless earworms embedded in countless American ears, many memorable albums—or do you want to put that away with the rest of the past?
You know, I never think about the music until I’m on stage. I have a wide musical palate that I enjoy and Creedence is just one part of it. I imagine our music will still catch my ear as I stroll through Whole Foods. It’s not going to go away; it hasn’t after 55 years.
What’s important to you now, Stu, as you move into this new phase of your life?
Well, I think our planet is important. Our families, of course, are important. Our role in the world is important, as a nation.
Do you care to expand on any of that?
The state of the world needs some attention now. We might put some effort into that direction. It’s never too late to pitch in and give back.
What have you been listening to on tour?
I’ve been a big fan of the Foo Fighters and Queens of the Stone Age. They have a good story. Each band has a rich story of how they got where they are. Those are the kinds of rock and roll stories that I like, they remind me of Creedence in some ways.
I can see that with QOTSA, they have that same sort of funky, hard rock sound that Creedence helped shape. Speaking of funky rock, my friend Jimmy Stallings from the Sir Douglas Quintet just dropped by and asked me to say hello. He’s busy here, tearing up the local scene with some younger musicians.
Oh, wow, tell him thanks for remembering me. Jimmy’s gotta be keeping them up late at night.
That makes me happy.
I like to hear that, too. I’m not leaving the music business, I’m not leaving music, It’s my life. But Doug and I are pretty much done with the constant touring. We’ve been there, we’ve done that and we certainly have the T-shirts. It’s a bittersweet year, I think everybody understands that. We love to play; to die onstage would be the death of a god. On the other hand, I don’t wanna wake up dead in some hotel room in Kansas.