STATUS QUO drummer Matt Letley has decided to leave the band after 12 years. He will make his final live appearance with Francis Rossi, Rick Parfitt, Andy Bown and John “Rhino” Edwards on Wednesday, December 19, at the O2 Arena in London.
Says Letley: “It’s been a fantastic journey over the past twelve years or so, but I have decided that now is the right time for me to leave QUO and move on to something new.
“No doubt there will be much conjecture that this is somehow related to the upcoming reunion gigs, but I’d like to assure everyone that it has no bearing on my decision. Indeed, I wish the guys every success with this tour and certainly hope to come along to see one of the shows!
“I should like to take this opportunity to thank the guys in the band, our fantastic crew and Simon and the girls in the office for their friendship and professionalism. Most of all I thank the fans without whom I should not have had the chance to play with one of the best rock and roll bands in the world.”
Adds QUO manager Simon Porter: “The band would like to thank Matt for a dozen years of loyal service. He’s a true pro and it’s been a pleasure to work with him. We’re delighted that his last hurrah with the band will be at such a prestigious London show and we wish him all the best for the future.”
The original STATUS QUO lineup — Rossi, Parfitt, Alan Lancaster and John Coghlan — will reunite for a one-off, never-to-be-repeated series of U.K. dates in March 2013.