By CHRIS SWEENEY
Published: 08 Sep 2009
SCOTLAND’S hyped-up Homecoming campaign has hit a bum note – after a line-up of ageing rockers was hired to play its musical grand finale.
Gig chiefs left pop fans baffled by snubbing chart-toppers like The Fratellis, Calvin Harris and Glasvegas for November’s Final Fling ‘extravaganza’.
Instead, middle-aged acts like Lloyd Cole, Kevin McDermott and James Grant will fill a golden-oldie bill that most of today’s cool young punters will struggle to recognise.
But last night top radio DJ Jim Gellatly said: “It will be the over-40s who’ll make up most of the crowd.
“I think it’s an opportunity for people to see bands that people probably assumed were no longer around.”
The November 28 bash at Glasgow’s SECC has been hailed as the climax to Homecoming 2009 – celebrating a golden era of Scottish music.
But organisers have signed up the likes of former Commotions frontman Lloyd Cole – who’s actually English.
He last brushed the charts 13 years ago when his single Baby limped in at No 121.
Also on the bill is singer Kevin McDermott, who’s fallen so far off the radar that his only confirmed gigs for 2009 are at The Victoria Hotel in Largs, Ayrshire.
Adding to the blast-from-the-past brigade is James Grant – ex-singer of soul band Love And Money.
Final Fling bosses have billed him as one of the best songwriters Scotland has ever produced – yet his biggest hit was in 1989 and even that didn’t break the Top 40.
Even some of the bigger names on the bill have struggled to make an impact in recent years.
Live Aid co-founder Midge Ure appears fresh from a recent appearance at festival Retrofest at Loudon Castle – having spent all summer playing 80s-themed events.
Coatbridge crooners Hue and Cry will play the SECC after a string of gigs saw them tour House of Fraser department stores to shift last album Open Soul.
Also on the bill are Deacon Blue – who haven’t had a new album for eight years.
In fact, the only current big-name acts are Dundee indie rockers The View and talented teenager Tommy Reilly.
Gellatly – who hosts The Music Bed on BBC Scotland – said: “Maybe they’re worried about asking the current crop of big acts because they could sell out the SECC on their own.
“I’d imagine the people that are going to be attracted to this are the sort who only go to one gig a year.
“This is not aimed at the gig-going public because it’s £35 a ticket and kids just can’t afford that.”
DF Concerts boss Geoff Ellis, whose firm is producing the show, defended the line-up.
He said: “Homecoming Live – The Final Fling is about bringing people home to celebrate Scotland and its music scene.”
A Homecoming Live spokeswoman added: “To say there is a lack of contemporary acts on the bill is not true.
“As well as The View, it will feature Idlewild, The Law and King Creosote plus more names.”
Publication: The Sun
Publication date: 08/09/2009