Brit Floyd the latest to pay tribute to iconic rock band
BY MIKE THOMAS Staff Reporterfirstname.lastname@example.org March 13, 2013 5:50PM
Brit Floyd will try to live up to is moniker as the “greatest Pink Floyd Tribute Show” with a concert Saturday at the Chicago Theatre.
‘The World’s Greatest Pink Floyd Tribute Show’
♦ 7:30 p.m. March 16
♦ Chicago Theatre, 175 N. State
♦ Tickets, $29-$49
♦ (800) 745-3000;
Updated: April 16, 2013 3:14PM
It’s no surprise that one of the world’s most popular rock groups, Pink Floyd, has spawned numerous tribute bands in America and abroad.
Musician Ian Cattell plays bass and shares lead vocalist responsibilities for one of the biggest tribute acts out there: Brit Floyd (www.britfloyd.com).
Begun in early 2011, it grew out of the venerable and grand-scale “Australian Pink Floyd Show” (of which Cattell and his mates were a part) and makes nearly 120 stops a year in North America, the U.K. and Europe.
Shortly before arriving in town for a March 16 show at the Chicago Theatre, Cattell talked about the pressure to get it right, Brit Floyd’s appeal and tribute band groupies.
Question: What’s the appeal of Brit Floyd?
Ian Cattrell: Some people want to relive what they experienced back in the ’70s, and some people just never had the chance [to see Pink Floyd] at all and they jump at the chance to come. And Pink Floyd is one of those bands that’s going to be around forever. As far as I’m concerned, it’s going to be a Mozart or Beethoven. And hopefully there’s always going to be a market for it.
Q. Do you guys prefer playing theaters to arenas?
IC: Well, they’re both different sorts of shows. I enjoy the intimacy in the theaters, but sometimes we can’t bring out all the toys depending on width and height of the stage. So there’s a different atmosphere.
Q. What’s the difference between touring as a Pink Floyd tribute band as opposed to the actual Pink Floyd?
IC: It’s a big show. We have two tractor-trailers … and two tour buses. We have more than a dozen crew [members] that we bring with us and there’s usually another dozen local crew. But when you compare it to the actual Pink Floyd, they had dozens and dozens of trucks. They tended to fly everywhere. That’s proper rock ‘n’ roll. The other thing is, they made money off their album sales. We only make money when we play.
Q. As you’ve gotten bigger, have your contract rider requests become more complex?
IC: Yes. I personally have a bowl with all the green M&Ms removed in my dressing room every night. [Laughs] And apple pie — no crust.
Q. You must be under a tremendous amount of pressure singing these epic tunes. Is there a sense that you can’t screw up?
IC: Every show, we have 1,000 or 3,000 fans out there who know every note. And, yeah, there is a lot of pressure to get it right, because there’s a lot of people that do hang on every note. And that’s why the show works the way it does, because we’ve taken the effort to get to that point.
Q. Does a Pink Floyd tribute band get a good level of groupie?
IC: [Laughs] Well, we’re not a Motley Crue band, let me put it that way. We do get some super fans that love to go on the [online] forum and the Facebook page and come to multiple shows, and we get to know some of them. But they’re usually middle-aged men… The only thing worse [groupie-wise] is being in a Genesis tribute band.