I thought it was time to stick my oar in after reading the threads and comments posted in this forum. I have been a Naz fan since 1977, and in that time I have seen them on numerous occasions, bought every album, then the CDs, then the remastered CDs, and I have even managed to collect the EP and the all the singles!
Like all of us, I was devasted that Dan had to retire - especially since there was a British tour coming up - a raritity these last few years. For what it is worth, I think it is wrong that Naz continue. Many of the posts have talked about how Dan is the heart and soul of the band, unreplacable, his voice is what is unique about Naz, etc., but then you calmly go on to discuss his replacement. I think you need to read your posts carefully; if Dan is what Naz is all about, then quite simply he can't be replaced. I am still smarting that Manny was sacked from the band and it took me a long time to get over that. When Darrell passed, I genuinely believed the band would end, after all, half of the group was now gone - how many members have to leave before it is no longer the group anymore? I must admit, it took me a while before I accepted that Naz would continue but eventually the 'new' line up won me over.
There were some tough times - when the band couldn't get a record contract I thought Naz would turn into one of those 'greatest hit' bands that tour small venues endlessly, and for a while it looked bleak, almost embarrassing. However, both 'The Newz' and 'Big Dogz' soon put that to rest and I genuinely feel that Naz are as good now as they have ever been.
Losing Dan has effectively stopped that. The talk of Billy returning to the band is depressing. Firstly, he clearly doesn't want to return - I mean, he did actually say that, right? Secondly, doesn't anyone remember how Billy was in the band, then he left, then he rejoined, and then he left again? Hardly committed, was he? Thirdly, can anyone really see Billy singing 'Telegram'? Come on guys, don't be silly.
What is concerning here is that this could turn into a farce. At certain times of their career Naz have got it wrong - Manny's sacking was badly handled, as was Billy's second departure; Zal left because of 'management issues', whatever that means, and the lack of information we, the fans had, about Dan's departure, wasn't funny. Now Pete has asked Billy to join the band and Billy has turned him down! Seriously, this is a bit ridiculous.
The hard truth is that this is done, Naz are done, and we have to accept that. We should, instead, celebrate the memories, the legacy, and most importantly, the music.
All things come to an end and this has been a great ride, but now it's time we all had a bit of dignity and say our farewells.