Pub's charity Hootenanny is old pals act

CHRISTMAS might still be a few days away but an end of the year bash is only a day away.

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For anyone unfamiliar with the term 'hootenanny' – and it's not a word that gets much use, except for Jools Holland's annual TV bash – all will become clear at Glasgow's Bon Accord pub tomorrow night.

Music and an unusual raffle will be among the attractions being staged by actor and writer Sandy Nelson and his friends at the famous North Street hostelry.

All proceeds will go to Yorkhill Sick Kids.

Admission is free, though all donations will be welcomed.

The Charity Hootenanny has been running for seven years and, according to Sandy, it stretches back a good few years beyond that.

He said: "Seven years ago, two of my friends, Jay and Lorelle McGurran, decided it would be a good idea to get all their old friends together for Christmas.

"We all came through the 1990s – we were in our 20s back then and we would all hang aroud at the Halt Bar on Woodlands Road. We were all musicians.

"By the early 2000s, we had all moved out of the city, and had children and got proper jobs."

The Christmas reunion, suggested by the McGurrans, was a way of the friends getting back together.

As befits such a clutch of old friends, even the raffle had a special beginning.

Sandy said: "Back in the 1990s, a bunch of us took a couple of bands over to France to do some gigs, and on the boat coming back there was bingo.

"When we got back to the Halt Bar, we thought this was a good idea, so we'd put bingo in every Wednesday night, in the middle of the music.

"It was tongue-in-cheek at first but everybody got into it."

Previous hootenannies have attracted contributions from such well-known local musician as Dave Anderson, Stevie Jackson of Belle and Sebastian, and Zac Ware, the guitarist with the Proclaimers.

l Charity Hootenanny, Bon Accord, North Street, 8pm tomorrow. Admission free.


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