Remember Live Aid? (you know Phil Collins appearing twice, Queen, all those other folk?)
Remember Live 8? (you know the richest stars in pop getting together, and ignoring their litigation about hats and other delights in order to make poverty history?)
Remember the Diana memorial concert? (you know the untimely death of Ricky Gervais, as excrutiating as the Partridge interview with the impressionist on the Radio 4 Knowing me, Knowing you with the sotto voce, “Do your Frank Spencer”)?
Remember the high voltage Al Gore inspired concerts which actively encouraged us to switch off by being rubbish and finding – mysteriously – further work for TV’s Fearne Cotton?
Yes, occasionally, the multifarious strands of the world of pop come together to support a cause dear to its collective poptastic heart. The press today has reported news of the latest venture: Tommy Aid.
“TOMMY Sheridan has won backing from top pop stars as he prepares to face perjury charges next week. The former MSP’s supporters have set up a “Defend Tommy Sheridan” page on social networking internet site MySpace. And a host of stars have registered as “friends” in a gesture of support. They include Beautiful South singer Paul Heaton, Edwyn Collins, Justin Currie and The View, Glasvegas and Asian Dub Foundation. Former Orange Juice frontman Collins has left a message on the site saying: “Total solidarity brother. Love Edwyn.” Comic Frankie Boyle, poet Benjamin Zephaniah, record boss Alan McGee and Respect MP George Galloway are also among 167 friends. Jim Monaghan, spokesman for Sheridan’s Solidarity party, highlighted the webpage writing in Scottish Left Review this week. He told the Record the stars had backed Sheridan personally and added: “We have been getting a lot of support. People can see that the Sheridans have been singled out here. This is politically motivated and not in the public interest.””
[Incidentally Mr MOnaghan [aka rinty] has also been active elsewhere promoting the Sheridan cause and exhibiting an exasperated tone in replies to the persistent questioning of jimtrot here while suggesting that the news of the appearance of Tommy on petition next week, which incidentally indicates the Crown are of the view that there is sufficient evidence to proceed against Tommy and Gail and that it is in the public interest to do so, implies that there will be no formal action against the other 5 that have been charged. He may have inside knowledge on this – but as I mentioned in a reply to Mick Hall the other day there are feasible explanations for the prosecution doing this or as Mr Monaghan suggests it may mean nothing is happening in relation to the other 5.]
The Scotsman suggests that things will progress a step further
“Leaders of the campaign are organising a concert and CD in support of Mr Sheridan and his wife Gail”
as well as planning a protest outside the sheriff court (which I may make my way through sunny Edinburgh to have a quick look at 😉 My loyal reader should realise that I’ll wear dark glasses and a disguise while walking with a pronounced limp in order to protect my identity).
PS The Scotsman list of Sheridan supporters differs slightly from that in The Record indicating, perhaps, the different class of clientele reached by each publication – “[Edwyn] Collins is joined on the list by Justin Currie, of Del Amitri, Paul Heaton, of the Beautiful South and the Housemartins, and the bands Camera Obscura, Glasvegas and the View. Writers John Aberdein [of course, Aberdein was on hand throughout the court case assisting Sheridan following the dismissal of his legal team], Martin McCardie and Irvine Welsh have also put their names to the campaign, as have poet Benjamin Zephaniah, comedians Frankie Boyle and Stu Who, actors Davie MacKay and Peter Mullan and trade unionists and members of the public.” Mullan’s involvement coincides with his wonderful performance in ITV1’s The Fixer, where he plays a mysterious employee of the state who maintains a crack team to deal with miscreants.