A right Carry On at Celtic Connections
I WOULD like to start this week’s column by wishing readers of the Glasgow Letter all the very best for 2017.
January is always a massive month for Glasgow as the city is transformed by the Celtic Connections festival which begins this year on Thursday January 19 with an opening night concert in the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, with Laura Marling and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra plus special guests.
I am looking forward to including details of the what is on at the festival over the coming weeks, and hopefully managing to take in a couple of concerts.
The talent on display at the festival is always awesome; but it is the craic in the evenings after the concerts that makes Celtic Connections so unique. With so many musicians from around the world gathering in one city, and usually in the same hotels, the sessions are not surprisingly fearsome!
One must be careful, however, when partaking in the joy of a Celtic Connections after-party that one is not spotted by journalists, who are always keen to relate tales of mischief and nonsense!
Last year, for example, I was walking to the Holiday Inn with a big group of folk in the small hours of the morning when I spotted in a newsagent’s window a huge, cuddly teddy tiger. In the spur of the moment, taking leave of my senses, I decided to buy it (for a ridiculously extortionate price) and take it to the party.
As we approached the Holiday Inn, two pipers in our group decided to strike up and pipe us into the hotel bar. As soon as we all entered the bar, an impromptu strip the willow began. With nowhere to put my tiger, I elected to dance the Strip the Willow with it.
As Burns would say, the night drove on with sangs and clatter, and eventually I awoke in my bed later that morning with this great big teddy tiger lying comfortably on my couch. I suddenly realised I had parted with my cash too easily whilst in good spirits, and felt so daft at having lumbered myself with this useless tiger.
At exactly this point, the phone rang. It was my auntie. “Did you get the tiger home safely?” she laughed.
It turned out my appearance with the tiger the previous night had been documented in The Herald that very morning!
They say that no publicity is bad publicity – but don’t expect to get away with anything at Celtic Connections!