The Chas and Dave account on Twitter posted today-
“It is with tremendous sadness that we announce the passing of our very own Chas Hodges. Despite receiving successful treatment for oesophageal cancer recently, Chas suffered organ failure and passed away peacefully in his sleep in the early hours of this morning.
Chas Hodges, one half of this popular musical duo, had been receiving treatment for oesophageal cancer.”
He died aged 74.
Chas 'n' Dave were still a popular singing duo before Chas sadly died today although music careers began as session musicians so many years ago.
As a band they performed what has been labelled Rockney music a combination of rock and cockney. The style of music is almost traditional pub sing-a-long music but much better.
Charles Nicholas Hodges played piano and was lead vocalist but could also turn his hand to banjo and guitar.
David Victor Peacock sang along as he twanged guitar but he was also a multi-talented musician turning his hand to banjo, piano and ukulele.
In the early days Mick Burt bashed away at the drums but he retired in 2011 and Nicholas Charles "Nik" Hodges, Chas’s son took over the role as drummer.
In October 2014 it was announced Mick Burt had died.
Chas and Dave songs have a comedy theme but still sound great and there was never any doubting Chas and Dave’s musical talents.
However some of their songs will make the 21st Century listener wince as they are anything but politically correct.
Dubbed a cheeky cockney duo Chas and Dave were often underestimated as musicians.
During their long musical career they had eight Top 40 hit singles and nine successful albums.
The single that set them on the path to success was Gertcha released in 1979. Chas and Dave even opened for Led Zeppelin at Knebworth Festival that same year.
In 2013 they released their first studio album in 18 years.
Chas and Dave reached stardom in the late 1970s and 1980s in Britain. It was a time of light entertainment variety shows on British television and this cheeky pair popped up on our screens time and time again.
In the mid 1980s Chas and Dave hosted a variety show set in an East End of London pub. The show was called Chas and Dave’s Knees Up with more than a nod to their cockney roots.
Love them or loathe them Chas and Dave played catchy songs that people still sing-a-long to.
The songs utilize cockney rhyming slang with rabbit substituted for talk in the song of the same name. In cockney rhyming slang rabbit and pork is talk. This song refers to a great looking woman who cannot stop talking.
Gertcha is loosely translated as get out of it!
Today tributes are pouring in not least from Tottenham Hotspur Football Club-
“The official Spurs Twitter account wrote: “Everyone at the club is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of one of our own, Chas Hodges. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”
Chas and Dave worked with Tottenham on various singles and Chas was a long time fan of the team.
In July 2018 they played to a full house, supporting headline act Eric Clapton, but Chas looked far from well. Later scheduled appearances were cancelled.
Perhaps the final words should go to Chas; words which are being reported across the mainstream media. In April they released their first album of new songs in decades and interviewed at the time Chas said -
“This is our first Chas & Dave-produced album for over 30 years. “Tell you what, though, we ain’t waiting another 30 years before we do the next one. The older you get, it seems time goes quicker. Yet as soon as we got in the studio it seemed like yesterday that we were producing our last album. My mum used to say the same thing in 1960: ‘Thirty years ago I was 17 and it seems like yesterday.’ ‘How can 30 years ago seem like yesterday?’ says I, slightly mockingly. ‘Well it bloody well does’, says mum, getting the deserved last word, and that’s that.”
Yes it does.