Award-winning Carnoustie celtic rock band Gleadhraich were Rolling in Talent last Saturday night - when Bay City Roller Alan Longmuir and Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall played surprise guest spots on their Dundee gig.
The band, who were Angus Cultural Ambassadors in 2014, were joined by the Very Special Guests for the sell-out show at the Starlight Showroom.
2011 Britain’s Got Talent winner Jai McDowall was the first surprise guest - providing vocals on Loch Lomond. He was greeted with a huge cheer from the capacity crowd, who sang along.
But the surprises weren’t over when the band finished their set list, as when they returned for their encore they welcomed Bay City Roller Alan Longmuir to the stage. He rolled back the years to play acoustic guitar with the band on the Rollers’ 1972 hit Shang-A-Lang sending the crowd into raptures.
The band then closed the show with their version of Take On Me from their second EP, Where We’re From, with confetti canons blasting into the crowd and showering the band as they took their final bows to David Bowie’s fitting Heroes.
Both guest spots were a top secret surprise for the sold-out gig – even the band’s families were kept in the dark - and came about thanks to the support the band and their piper Craig Weir have been giving to top names over the last few years.
Gleadhraich have played support for Jai twice as well as Donnie Munro, ex-AC/DC drummer Chris Slade and Skerryvore in recent years, plus Stevie McCrorie and The Fratellis in a charity gig in January.
Piper Craig has played the most star gigs, though, having piped on the Bay City Roller’s reunion tour last Christmas, with Queen at the SSE Hydro in January 2015 and twice with The Libertines. He’s also composed and played a tune to the Dalai Lama in 2012 and along with brother, Paul, played Arnold Schwarzenegger into his Edinburgh business event in January.
Even the pre-announced support act for the night, 18-year-old Aberdeenshire folk singer Alannah Moar, was extra special as she won the Scotland’s Soundwaves unsigned act competition in January.
Talking about how the star-studded guest list came to be, Craig said: “We were keen to make this show extra special with the addition of a couple of special guests.
“We’d previously played with Jai and thought it would be great to get him to sing with us. When I was on the Bay City Rollers tour I discussed with Alan the idea of him guesting for us, so when I asked if he was up for it he agreed straight away. I still can’t believe it’s really happened.
“To have both of these major Scottish artists playing with the band was amazing and hopefully the crowd enjoyed the surprises. It certainly completed the night for us!”
Afterwards, Roller Alan, who kept his promise to play despite suffering from flu, said: “They’re a great band.”
Jai added: “I was panicky before the gig, as I normally am, but once I was on stage the audience were great and the boys were brilliant too.”