When Francis Rossi Served Ice Cream Containing His Own Blood
The rocker's Italian family ran the Rossi’s chain of ice cream parlors in London, and as a young man he worked alongside his father before changing direction and following music instead.
In a recent episode of Psycho Schizo Espresso, hosted by Dickinson and psychologist Dr. Kevin Dutton, Rossi recalled the family business. “I was supposed to go into ice cream but at the time that was a horrendous thought, and now I’m thinking, it wouldn’t have been that bad,” the singer joked. When Dickinson mentioned “ice cream wars” – referring to violent incidents between rival crime gangs in the '80s – Rossi said: “That goes on. A couple of times my dad came home beaten up for some reason. Unless he was chasing someone’s wife. He was probably a bit that way – Italiano!”
The Status Quo frontman went on to recount one of his early misadventures. “You see, the ice cream goes into these chambers; it’s liquified and you pour it in the top,” Rossi explained. “It’s a frozen chamber and this thing swings round with blades and it makes ice cream. Well, I stood up to check it… I pushed the ice cream down the little funnel piece… and of course the blade kicks in to start the thing, and it chopped my finger.”
He continued: “And it kinda went pink, the ice cream. Fuck knows whether they’d get away with that these days, but [Dad] made me serve it the rest of the day! He said, ‘Just tell them it’s strawberry or something.’” Dutton noted, “There’s probably all these people of a certain generation running around south London with things wrong with them,” to which Dickinson responded, “Rossi D.N.A.!”
Watch Francis Rossi on ‘Psycho Schizo Espresso’