Status Quo founder Francis Rossi was preparing to ditch his music career to become an ice cream man just before the rockers hit the big time in 1968.

The legendary guitarist - who had bought the van and practised his scooping technique - was worried about his new family's finances until the band's first hit PICTURES OF MATCHSTICK MEN charted at number seven.

Rossi says, "I was in a bit of a corner, to be honest.

"Up until then I was ready to jack it all in and go out and go out and sell ice cream.

"I'd bought the van, just got married and I thought, 'I'm going to have to go out and do all this.'

"But luckily it was a hit and I thought, 'That'll do me, I'm off.'"