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Monday, 22 September 2014

Shattered dreams, but what's new?

And now here we are in the cold light of day suffering from the post referendum blues, and the news that the vows written on the cover of the Daily Record have already been shredded is being heard across the land.
There will be a debate, but the majority in Westminster who don’t want to deliver more devolved powers will kick it into the long grass.

Who would have thought that would have happened?
Sorry.
I mean who didn't see that coming?
Oh wait. Cameron says it’s still on track.
Does anyone want to join me in holding our collective breath for a positive outcome?
Nope?
No, I didn't think so.

So would it be churlish of me to ask those who voted no as they believed more powers would be forthcoming how that is currently working out for them?

Then again some people voted no because they didn't want anything to change.

Latest news is that Ed Balls has called for child benefit to be capped if Labour takes Westminster.
It looks likely that the English vote will take us out of Europe when that referendum rolls around.

So over all how is that decision working out for you?

Thankfully pretty much all the parties have said that austerity measures will remain in place so there’s one thing that isn't changing.

Hurrah for that then.

There are of course some people who have managed to get what they wanted.

The politicians for one.
What a no vote did was secure a season ticket on the gravy train for them.
No wonder Labour and Conservative councillors were slapping each others backs and cracking open the champers.
Allegedly Jim Murphy broke down in tears of pure unadulterated joy and screamed “the drinks are on my expense account” to loud cheers of support from a selection of cross party representatives.
Once the clamour had died down it is said that you could hear a large sigh of relief from London based interior designers who make their living from the patronage of Scottish MPs.

Then let’s not forget that the right wing elements got what they wanted to.
Their beloved Queen and country has been saved for whites of a certain religious group.

Fandabifuckindozycunts.

That’s a personal favourite of mine.
I just loved watching them celebrate at a war memorial by rigidly extending their right arms skywards.
Not sure what it was that it reminded me of though.
You would have thought it was a nazi salute, but they were waving union flags and the location seems to say that couldn't be the case.
I mean war memorial, union flags, Rule Britannia being sung and Sieg Heiling.
One of those doesn't fit so it must have been something else.

Hmmm who else got what they wanted?

I'm not really sure.

Did those who wanted to protect their income and employment get what they wanted?

Only time will tell I suppose, but it’s a harsh fact that if a business wishes to relocated and bump their employees out of a job then this country being part of the UK or not will have no bearing on that.

So maybe we will have to wait a bit and see if they get what they wanted.
Some probably will, but not all of them.

And now here’s the tricky one.

Did the pensioners get what they wanted?
Security in the years they have left to them?

Once again we will have to wait and see how that works out to.
I’ll not be betting on them having a better standard of living or the one they currently have being maintained, but who knows.
In a genetically modified future maybe pigs will also fly.

Off the back of all this there has been some effort made to have people show a bit of solidarity.
There’s a cry for people to refrain from apportioning blame.

Much of it sounds like people realizing that they made a mistake and instead of putting their hands up to it they would rather just not talk about it at all.

I'm not sure if I am entirely comfortable with that.
A portion of my fellow countrymen and women took something away from me and apparently I am just to let it go, or even work with these people to secure something that we had the opportunity of already taking for ourselves.

It’s going to take some time for me to personally get over this.


I think I will reserve the right to point fingers just now.
I think I will reserve the right to still feel a degree of hurt and anger.
I genuinely don't think anyone has much of a right to put a time scale on my grief or to claim that I am over reacting.
In fact how dare they.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

In conversation with Bad Touch

XXXX - From the outside looking in the career arc of Bad Touch certainly gives the impression of living the dream. There’s been many plaudits and a whole bunch of sought after national supports secured by the band.
Obviously none of that falls into your lap though.
So what is the secret? Is it simply a combination of hard work, talent and luck?

BT - Things have been going really well for the band over the last couple of years and its difficult to put your finger on why - It's probably a combination of the band constantly striving to improve and write better songs, playing as many live shows as we can, sound management and a huge slice of luck - hopefully opportunities will keep coming and we will make the most of them

XXXX - Is there moments when you are all on the road that the trials and tribulations of the reality of moving from city to city, setting up, sound checking, crashing out and then doing it all again slips into the background and you consider yourself rather blessed to be doing something that you all so obviously love doing?

BT - Touring is without doubt our favourite way to gig as we can focus on exactly what we are doing and get into a good routine - and we want to keep on doing it for years to come.
Obviously as a young band we are going to cities and venues we have never played before and meeting loads of great people who support live music - how could anyone not love it.
We have also been really fortunate to have toured with some great bands and really lovely people - The Quireboys and Bonafide were just the perfect people to help us through our first 2 tours - and having met both The Electric Boys and Tyketto in the past we know that they to are great guys to tour with.

XXXX - In the hardest moments. The nights when everything goes wrongs - as if we are honest every band has battled through them - what is it that keeps you going?

BT - There have been nights where everything that possibly could have gone wrong has gone wrong, and we've thought we've played really badly because we've been battling with equipment constantly going wrong.
But then when multiple people come up to you afterwards and say how much they enjoyed it and that you played really well despite the problems, it makes none of the problems really matter. Because we all love playing and writing our own music and people enjoying the music you've written is what it's all about and the good nights far outweigh the bad.

XXXX - In every band there is that one person who is the take charge type. The one who has an OCD approach to covering everything and the rest turn to and ask anything from “where’s the set list” to “is there a Mexican vegan restaurant near the venue” and they can actually answer pretty much anything. In Bad Touch who is that?

BT - We are all a bit OCD but in different area's. Rob is fussy about the songs themselves, Steve and George about performing and putting on a good show, Seeks about image and artwork, Baileys just too laid back - but does have in built satnav to find the nearest Weatherspoons.- probably the only one with his priorities in the correct order

XXXX - Once this forthcoming tour with The Electric Boys is put to bed what is the next move for the band? How far ahead are you forward planning?

BT -  Once the tour with the Electric Boys concludes we will be looking forward to another short UK tour with Tyketto and several one off gig's and festivals around the country including Hard Rock Hell and Legends of Rock.
In January we are off the Sweden to record our debut album which we hope to be ready for release in the early Spring - the plan is then to tour the UK again to promote the release.
We expect to play several festivals throughout the summer of 2015 - then perhaps tour again in the autumn but beyond this we dont have any plans - just hopes.

XXXX - In the time frame of the band being together you have obviously been gaining an insight into the music business as you have forged ahead.
What sort of advice would you offer other bands?
Is there one specific thing they should avoid, one specific thing they must do?

BT - In the time we have been together the music business has continued to evolve and has become ever tougher for young bands to establish themselves and with the fall off in sales of recorded music there are not many companies willing to take a chance on an unproven band.
Never-the-less there are still young bands such as Heavens Basement making progress so its up to us to work as hard as we can and build up a following around the country and gigging as much as possible is vital.
Advice to other young bands - Go and see as many bands as possible and learn from the best.
Avoid - behaving like you are already rock stars
Must - Write good songs and practice and gig as much as possible

XXXX - As the gig in Glasgow is following the referendum vote for independence has it dawned on you all that Bad Touch could unofficially be one of the first English bands to play in Scotland as a foreign country (I say unofficially as independence doesn't automatically follow a yes vote). In a sense you could be forging the way for others to follow.

BT - We just hope that we won't be cavity searched at the border.
(XXXX. It’s not going to be compulsory, but if you want to put some names forward we can see what we can do.)

XXXX - And finally do you have any messages that you want to pass on to your Scottish fans?


BT -  We've only played in Scotland a few times and every time its always been a great and appreciative crowd, so I'd just say thanks for your support and for making us feel welcome.

Bad Touch will be arriving in Glasgow to open for Electric Boys on Sept 21st and will be joined by Rank Berry.
Info is here.

Five things I have learnt in the lead up to the referendum.

Here are just a few things that I have learnt in the lead up to the referendum vote.

1) We, the people, have taken our eye off the ball for too long.
This alienation, and then disengagement from the political process, has allowed individuals who lack the skills to represent us assume representational roles.
We have people that couldn't spell integrity making decisions on our behalf.
Dishonest rogues, liars and charlatans abound.
Yet whose fault is it that these people proliferate among every political party and hold office in every tier of government?
It’s ours.
The brightest and best were the people who we should have been supporting.
Instead tribal loyalties got in the way, and if we bothered to vote we did so for parties rather than the individual.
It’s been said that pin a certain colour of rosette on a donkey and some will still vote the donkey in, and it’s true.
We should have done better.

2) A wage and an expense account are more important than an ideology.
Every day we see politicians claim to speak on behalf of the people, but strip the hollow words away and what we are left with is protectionist rhetoric.
They want to protect their job, their wealth and their privilege.
They don’t just want to keep their first class ticket for the gravy train, but they want us to pay for it to.

3) A suit and tie and is a serviceable disguise for an idiot to pass himself off as a rational human being.
Consider UKIP.
They should be a fringe party with the amount of nonsensical rubbish they come out with, but put a suit on the village idiot and people listen to him blather on about floods being Gods judgement on homosexuals and respond as if it has some sort of relevance instead of laughing it off as the ravings of a fool.

4) The mainstream media in the UK is beyond being salvaged.
From phone hacking to being the mouthpiece for the political elite they are failing us on every single level imaginable.
Journalists of the present should hold their heads in shame.
Reportage has become infotainment and z-list celebs are as relevant as a child abuse scandal for the red tops.
How did that happen?
They say the people get the press that they deserve.
Is this our fault to? 

5) In the dictionary in Westminster words such as honesty, morals, fairness, compassion, equality and honour have apparently been redacted.

In fact the dictionary must look like a top secret confidential report with virtually every page only having a couple of words on show. 

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Let's start again.

I have friends in England who consider that us Scots who fervently wish for independence from the United Kingdom are rats leaving the sinking ship.

Thanks for acknowledging that the ship is sinking, and this may surprise you when I say this, but you are right.
It’s called the survival instinct.
To take the analogy further if the rUK is the Titanic then the Scots refuse to be the band who continue to play on.

When we signed up to the union it was supposed to be that, a union.
It was never supposed to be master and servant.
Our wishes, our dreams, and what we aspired to were to be equally taken into consideration, and successive governments defaulted on that.
Have we had some good years?
Maybe some people have. Others most certainly haven’t.
The relationship in many ways has not delivered on what was promised.

Now I will admit to feeling slight pangs of guilt when good fellow socialists state that our abandoning them will leave them under the boot heel of the Conservatives.
However how is our standing in solidarity working out for you right now?

What you need to do is seriously consider the future, and if Westminster isn’t going to even acknowledge the changes you would like to see happen then come and join us.

Help us make a country that you want.

We need you.

We need people from all walks of life to bring their skills with them.
We need your intelligence, your work ethic and your dreams.

Can we do it without you?
We probably can, but the door is open anyway.

Many of us have been looking for change for many years.
We have shared the pain of hitting our heads off that brick wall.
Now the offer is there to come with us and help build something new.
To be part of a dream that could become a reality that will fundamentally change your life.

The analogy of it being akin to the end of a marriage has been used often, but while many of us do want a separation it is with the government that has poorly represented us all.
Between us, the people, it is different.


We do want to leave, but you can come with us.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Stanley Odd - Son I Voted Yes

Scottish hip hop to the outsider may well sound like an oxymoron, but when they shout never the twain shall meet we can quietly laugh at their ignorance as acts like Stanley Odd, Lusty, Loki, The Girobabies and Hector Bizerk rattle out rhymes that would stand triumphant in any rap battle.

When you really listen to them all you can hear the nascent sound of the punk revolution echoing down the years as their take on social commentary covers ground that the mainstream media dare not touch.

here's to them as they set foot on the ground where angels would fear to tread.
They are out there on the fringes breaking ground and all are worthy of our attention and support.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

1984 - Citizens Theatre.

It has been said that the only culture I indulge in is scraped off the bottom of a yoghurt pot at 3am when I do a hangover raid on the fridge, but that’s a dirty lie as when time permits I don’t mind indulging in a bit of theatre.

In fact the truth is that I love it.

Although I will admit that as a working class boy there’s a bit of me that does feel the need to justify my penchant for a good stage play.

It’s irrational, and of course my rational mind baulks at that revelation, but I can’t help but accept that deep down there is a part of me that still feels that the theatre is not for the likes of a semi literate chancer who grew up in the wilds of Ayrshire.  
In very quiet moments a small voice often whispers that it is for my betters.
My so called betters being those who have basked in an existence that wasn’t one of making ends meet, wearing hand me downs, and instead revolved around chats with mater and pater about the merits of impressionist art over classic realism.

It is silly stuff, and most assuredly not rooted in reality and the voice is of course one that I try not to listen to.

Thankfully it does helps that the Citizens Theatre in Glasgow has always advocated strongly that the tales that are shared from their stage are for everyone, and it is ensconced in one of their seats that the voice that whispers to me is so very often drowned out by the inclusive spectacle of the events that they regularly host.

A prime example of this was provided by the performance of an adaptation of 1984 by Headlong that they currently have running. http://headlong.co.uk/

I’ve always been pushing that people should read Orwell, and I consider that through the character of Winston that he painted a dystopian picture that is well deserved to be considered as a globally recognized precognisant masterpiece.

Yet this imaginative adaptation by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan takes the story, one that has always been darkly alive, and pumps even more fresh blood into it.

By twisting how the tale is delivered by looking at it from a future vantage point as if the fictional account was one that was based on actual events - even if the character of Winston himself is accepted as a fictional one - they allowed us all to immerse ourselves in what could be the equivalent of what could be considered akin to an Anne Frank diary speaking to us from the past.
An example of not what could be, but what once was, and by coming at it from this angle the message of the evils of totalitarianism are writ large, and are then ultimately difficult to ignore when we leave the theatre and consider the present world as it is.

Clever, thought provoking and entertaining.
In fact it is everything that the novel equally is.

While I have often been left enchanted by live theatre this is one performance that I would not hesitate in recommending to literally everyone.
It’s a must see in every way imaginable, or probably a more accurate statement would be a must be experienced event in every way imaginable.


Bravo. 

Monday, 25 August 2014

Monsterpop

Fame and success are two things that often go hand in hand, but neither necessarily have anything to do with talent.
Some people are famous for doing very little, while others have success dropped into their laps due to being in the right place at the right time.

Talent, hard work and a sense of self belief may well get you far in life, but there are simply no guarantees that come with having any, or all of them, as positive attributes.

So with that said I am sure that pretty much everyone can name a friend who they know are supremely talented in what they do but are not getting the recognition that they so richly deserve.

For me that person is Jimmy Devlin aka Monsterpop.
Apart from being an all round good guy who has been supportive of all the things I do and who can be relied upon to step up when help is required, he is also as mentioned outrageously talented.

Give him a guitar and there’s not a lot he can’t do with it.
Throw a genre of music at him and he will master it.
Ask him to write a song and what he will come up with could sit comfortably on a top selling album.

Yet for one reason or another that success that his talents should provide him with has never materialized.

It’s not that he hasn’t had opportunities.
He’s been a member of a few bands who are much loved and some of them have taken him right to the cusp of wider recognition and then due to factors that are not within his control fell short of reaching the finishing line.

He’s not one to complain though.
Instead he will regale you with tales of the tours and television appearances that are humorously entertaining, and not once do they come close to being the “Glory Days” stories that lend themselves to the person claiming “I could have been a contender”.
It is certainly to his credit that the years haven’t left him burnt out and jaded as it has for so many others.
The man is in short a diamond.

In recent years, far from being idle, Jimmy has been offering six string support to both The Snipes and The Red Eyes.
Both of who are considered to be - not to be missed - examples of melodic punk rock at its finest.

And as a project that stands apart from playing in these bands he has his Monsterpop alter ego that allows him to flex his power pop muscles.
.With some kitchen session recording done he time after time drops little nuggets of power pop classics to the world that could have been recorded in the most luscious of studios.
Think Cheap Trick, think Jellyfish, think of any act that that has had some success in writing a hook that digs deep and wont let go and then think Monsterpop.

Over recent months he has journeyed out and made a few sporadic appearances as Monsterpop and played the songs acoustically, but he must be sick of me telling him to get a band up to speed and get out there to do the full electric show.

Anyway, the project and Jimmy are literally that good, and best of all is that you don’t have to take my word for it.

Instead all you have to do is go and listen to him here www.noisetrade.com/monsterpop/monsterpop and after you have done that then jump over to Facebook and show the man some love. 

Oh and here he is just messing about in his kitchen.

No Mean City 2014 (Glasgow)

After last years success the team behind No Mean City are not resting on their laurels and an already sterling line up has been secured.

The Felice Brothers - O2 ABC, Thursday 28th August, 7pm

The Felice Brothers started their musical career performing at family barbeques; and have just released their sixth album. 
Described by American Songwriter as "challenging Americana that never takes its audience, or its influences, for granted", 
Favourite Waitress marks the first time the band ever recorded in a proper studio.

Nick Waterhouse  -  King Tut's, Thursday 28th August, 7pm
Californian guitarist Nick Waterhouse is known for a sounds rooted in rhythm & blues, jazz, and soul. 
On his latest record, Holly, "he hones a had-edged sound, full of nimble guitar licks, taut melodies and precise rhythm" (Paste Magazine).
St Paul and the Broken Bones
He cites the movie Chinatown as his main influence for the album, which is an ode to Los Angeles; and dedicated it to screenwriter Robert Towne.

St. Paul & The Broken Bones - Oran Mor, Monday 1st September, 7pm
St. Paul & The Broken Bones is a seven-piece soul band from Alabama who use vintage technology to recreate a 60s sound. 
After taking SXSW 2014 by storm, their debut album Half a City went to No.3 in the iTunes Chart.

Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin plus Sarah Hayes (Admiral Fallow) - O2 ABC2, Monday 1st September, 7pm
Glastonbury regulars Phillip Henry & Hannah Martin are one of the most innovative acts to appear on the folk scene in years; 
and after winning Best Duo at the BBC Folk Awards 2014, they are very hot property.

Willie Watson -  CCA on Friday 5th September, 7pm
Former Old Crow Medicine Show member, Willie Watson was once described as "Bob Dylan without the nasal whine or pretention". 
Although he did grow up listening to the likes of Dylan, it was a Leadbelly album that got him hooked on the folk style; as a result, 
his expert banjo and guitar playing will transport the listener to another time.

Frank O'Hagan plus Les Johnson & The Shiverin' Sheiks -  O2 ABC2, Friday 12th September, 7pm 
A regular at one of Glasgow's oldest pubs The Scotia, Frank O'Hagan has become one of the city's best-loved singers songwriters. 
He recently supported soul legend Mavis Staples.

Robert Altman's Nashville - Glasgow Film Theatre, Tuesday 16th September, 6pm
Incorporating film into the Festival for the first time, there will be a special screening of Nashville (1975) at the GFT on Tuesday 16th September at 6pm. 
Widely considered as some of Robert Altman's best work, the film takes a snapshot of people involved in the country music and gospel business in Nashville, Tennessee.

Natural Child plus Eugene Twist- O2 ABC2, Wednesday 17th September, 7pm
Rascals of the country scene, Natural Child 'Let the Good Times Roll' with comical lyrics, and a fun laid-back stage show. 
Indie Media Mag sums the boys up perfectly: "the three-man band blends country, rock and blues to make an elixir to cure all your musical ales (Sic)".

The Urban Voodoo Machine plus Dirty Diamond and the Gunslinger - O2 ABC2, Saturday 20th September, 7pm
The Urban Voodoo Machine market themselves, accurately, as bourbon soaked gypsy bop 'n' stroll. 
Urban Voodoo Machine
"The London-based nine-piece inhabit a weird, surreal Noo Orleans world where the ghosts of Dr. John, John Lee Hooker and vaudeville orchestras do battle with stomping rockabilly-style swamprock". (Louder Than War)

Christian Bland & the Revelators plus Al Lover -  O2 ABC2, Tuesday 23rd September, 7pm
Christian Bland is best known as the guitarist for The Black Angels (part of No Mean City in 2012) His solo project, 
Christian Bland and The Revelators highlights his signature sound and his contribution to one of modern psych-rock's biggest and best bands.

Chastity Brown -  O2 ABC2, Thursday 25th September, 7pm
The sound of Chastity Brown is a laid-back fusion of soul, jazz, blues and country. She has been compared to the likes of Tracy Chapman and Nina Simone; 
and Penny Black Music dubbed her last album, Back-Road Highways, "THE soul album of the year".

The Dunwells plus City of Lights - O2 ABC2, Saturday 27th September, 7pm
Leeds lads, The Dunwells, describe their sound as a "unique blend of emotionally driven, anthemic rock, featuring four part harmonies". 
Their influences vary from Foy Vance and Crowded House, to Fleet Foxes and Elbow.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

NHC Shop

As some readers will know I am involved in a new venture.
For those who don’t know what I am talking about I will explain.
We, and I say we as it isn’t just me, are opening a record shop in the west end of Glasgow.
Well it’s not strictly just a record shop as apart from the vinyl and the CDs we are selling books, DVDS, Blue Rays, Merchandise and gig tickets.
The shop itself is really an extension of the New Hellfire Club, a natural next step from the website, podcast, fanzine and promoting of gigs and I am very pleased to be up to my neck in this.
So I hope that explains the lack of content being added to the blog.
We have all simply been run off our feet getting things ready.

Times are indeed a changing.

Now a bit more about why I am doing this.
Well apart from the obvious of why not, it is because like so many others I have always felt a degree of dissatisfaction with the employment side of my life.
There have been many positives in what I do as a day job, and I have worked with very many lovely people, but deep down it isn’t what I feel that I am naturally inclined to gravitate towards.

It’s like that instant association thing when someone asks you to say your dream job, no thinking, just say it fast.
If anyone was to do that with me then what would fly from my lips is not what I currently do.

It would be the word “music”.

I want to be involved in music.
I want to swim in it, breath it in, feast on it and exist within a world of swirling notes that will carry me forward in my life.

And now as middle age wraps its arms around me I have this opportunity and I am not going to let it slip past.

I am going to make that leap and sweat blood to make a success of it as if I don’t now then when will the opportunity arise again?

The words “shoulda, woulda, coulda” will not be part of my future conversations.

This is it.

So wish us all luck, and more than that come and see us.
I think the majority will be surprised at what we are doing as we are looking to be more than just a record shop.

If you do want to pop along then you can find us in the hidden lane in the west end.
The shop is tucked away in a corner at Unit 4, 1103 Argyle Street.

We are open from the 18th of August, but on the 23rd and 24th (Sat and Sun) we have six acoustic performers on each day to entertain you as you browse.
There may even be wine.

Oh okay. There will be wine. J

More information can be found on our facebook page.


Friday, 8 August 2014

We love you to. Mwah.

Dear everyone that put their name to the lovebomb letter.

Yes, that’s you David Aaronovitch, Jenny Agutter, Sir Ben Ainslie, Kriss Akabusi, Roger Allam, Kirstie Allsop, Alexander Armstrong, Sir David Attenborough, Steve Backley, Baroness Joan Bakewell, Frances Barber, Andy Barrow, John Barrowman, Mike Batt, Glen Baxter, Stanley Baxter, Martin Bayfield, Mary Beard, Sarah Beeny, Antony Beevor, Angellica Bell, Dickie Bird, Cilla Black, Graeme Black, Roger Black, Malorie Blackman, Ranjit Bolt, Helena Bonham Carter, Alain de Botton, William Boyd, Tracy Brabin, Lord Melvyn Bragg, Jo Brand, Gyles Brandreth, Rob Brydon, Louisa Buck, Simon Callow, Will Carling, Paul Cartledge, Guy Chambers, Nick Cohen, Michelle Collins, Colonel Tim Collins, Olivia Colman, Charlie Condou, Susannah Constantine, Steve Coogan, Dominic Cooper, Ronnie Corbett, Simon Cowell, Jason Cowley, Sara Cox, Amanda Craig, Steve Cram, Richard Curtis, Tom Daley, William Dalrymple, Richard Dawkins, Dame Judi Dench, Jeremy Deller, Lord Michael Dobbs, Jimmy Doherty, Michael Douglas, Simon Easterby, Gareth Edwards, Jonathan Edwards, Tracey Emin, Sebastian Faulks, Bryan Ferry, Ranulph Fiennes, Ben Fogle, Amanda Foreman, Sir Bruce Forsyth, Neil Fox, Emma Freud, Bernard Gallacher, Kirsty Gallacher, George Galloway, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Bamber Gascoigne, David Gilmour, Harvey Goldsmith, David Goodhart, Lachlan Goudie, David Gower, AC Grayling, Will Greenwood, Tamsin Greig, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, Lord Charles Guthrie, Haydn Gwynne, Maggi Hambling, Mehdi Hasan, Sir Max Hastings, Stephen Hawking, Peter Hennessy, James Holland, Tom Holland, Tom Hollander, Gloria Hunniford, Conn Iggulden, John Illsley, Brendan Ingle, Eddie Izzard, Betty Jackson, Sir Mike Jackson, Howard Jacobson, Sir Mick Jagger, Baroness PD James, Griff Rhys Jones, Terry Jones, Christopher Kane, Sir Anish Kapoor, Ross Kemp, Paul Kenny, Jemima Khan, India Knight, Martha Lane Fox, Baroness Doreen Lawrence, Tory Lawrence, Kathy Lette, Rod Liddle, Louise Linton, John Lloyd (journalist), John Lloyd (producer), Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber, Gabby Logan, Kenny Logan, Sarah Lucas, Dame Vera Lynn, Margaret MacMillan, Stephen Mangan, James May, Davina McCall, Sir Ian McGeechan, Heather McGregor, Andy McNab, John Michie, David Mitchell, Lord John Monks, Lewis Moody, Michael Morpurgo, Bill Morris, David Morrissey, Philip Mould, Al Murray, Sir Paul Nurse, Andy Nyman, Peter Oborne, Sir Michael Parkinson, Fiona Phillips, Andy Puddicombe, Lord David Puttnam, Anita Rani, Esther Rantzen, Sir Steve Redgrave, Derek Redmond, Pete Reed, Lord Martin Rees, Peter Reid, Baroness Ruth Rendell, Sir Cliff Richard, Hugo Rifkind, Sir Tony Robinson, David Rowntree, Ian Rush, Greg Rutherford, CJ Sansom, June Sarpong, Simon Schama, John Sessions, Sandie Shaw, Helen Skelton, Sir Tim Smit, Dan Snow, Peter Snow, Phil Spencer, David Starkey, Sir Patrick Stewart, Sting, Lord Jock Stirrup, Tallia Storm, Neil Stuke, David Suchet, Alan Sugar, Graeme Swann, Stella Tennant, Daley Thompson, James Timpson, Alan Titchmarsh, Kevin Toolis, Lynne Truss, Gavin Turk, Roger Uttley, David Walliams, ZoĆ« Wanamaker, Robert Webb, Richard Wentworth, Sir Alan West, Dominic West,  and Kevin Whately.

Especially you Kevin Whately, but maybe not you John Barrowman.

First let me apologise as I have no clue whatsoever who many of you are, but that doesn't matter.
I thank you for your timely and compassionate intervention.
I am sure that you have all thought long and hard about the future and each and every one of you have very clear reasons as to why you want us Scots to remain as part of the union.
We feel the love, we really do.
Just ignore those people who are saying that you have no right to an opinion because so many of you are rich, oh so very rich, and very often don’t live in Scotland, or even the UK, or have much of a clue about what it is like to be scrambling from one pay day loan or benefit cheque to the next.
These people are just tired, partially ground down and lashing out.
You all have the right to an opinion regardless of whether you hold it while lounging on a beach in Barbados or sharing it with a friend over a meal in a VIP area in a five star restaurant.
So feel free to express them as you wish.

However, and this is just a small thing, a little favour that you could maybe consider doing.
Could you maybe, just maybe, find some time in your busy schedules to add your name to another letter?

This one could be addressed to David Cameron and you wouldn’t even need a stamp to send it as some of you are close friends and I am sure next time you see him you could just hand it over.
I mean there’s no rush anyway.

Here’s the deal though.
In this letter could you all collectively ask why there are food banks in the UK, why the rich are getting richer off the backs of the poor who are most certainly getting poorer, and maybe casually throw in a request for him to sort out someone that the nation can get behind to investigate all that disgusting child abuse stuff.
If you really want to you could even mention something about the NHS dying from a death of a thousand cuts.

It’s just that I think that it is possible that you have put the cart before the horse when you asked us to stay with you.
Although not literally because I am sure none of you want us Scots turning up on your doorstep with our suitcases full of Irn Bru, haggis and shortbread asking where your nearest deep fat fryer is.

What I mean is that if there were no food banks because no one was going hungry, that the wealth of the nation was shared a bit more fairly, and that we could see justice being done not just in the child abuse cases, but in all the things that the politicians seem to get up to, then it is possible that we would agree that we were better together and feel no need to look to forge ahead with an independent Scotland.

It’s just a thought, and I am sure that given a moment you will see the worth in it.

PS. Can you have a word with John Barrowman about his accent? Life is hard enough.

PPS. Oh, and I didn't notice Rod Liddle in there. Rod Liddle who said "The only reason any people remain in Scotland is on account of the very cheap alcohol in supermarkets, plus a ready supply of heroin for when the alcohol runs out."
He is also the guy who offended so many with his cheap racist shots surrounding the Stephen Lawrence case.
So while we love the rest of you I think you can keep Rod.
The Scotland many of us want is a pretty inclusive one, but you have to draw the line somewhere. 


Thanks.

More information about Rod Liddle in the comments section.