Tonight, The Stranglers play the O2 Academy, Glasgow.
This is their 40th Anniversary tour, bloody hell, where did that go?
40 years ago, Scotland qualified for the World Cup in Germany and remain the only team that never suffered a defeat in the opening group stages to be removed from the competition.
Hardly a claim,, but we were a fairly decent football team then.
I first came across The Stranglers in the summer of 1977, when punk rock and new wave became popular.
Their first single was a Double A-Side of Peaches and Go Buddy Go which we played constantly.
The difference between The Stranglers and the majority of Punk that was around at the time, is that these were actually musicians and had been playing as a rock band for years before jumping on the New Wave bandwagon .. or should that be being pigeon holed under .. as everyone needs to be hit with a label.
In my mind, they were never really punks, not like The Wire, or the manufactured bands like Sex Pistols and Generation X, they were more Ramones style, American Punk rather than the UK punks of Mohican Haircuts and bondage trousers.
Me and my pal Jim went to see them at the Glasgow Apollo around that time ( 77/78 ) Jumping around to Go Buddy Go, Something Better Change and No More Heroes.
Of course there was no way that we could dress as punks, we were still kids at the time and our mammies widnae let us!
40 years ago, Jim was my best pal, we used to play football every day, tennis when Wimbledon was on the tv and ran home to see Stansky and Hutch on the tv every Saturday night.
Strangely, because of the religious divide in Glasgow, we went to different schools .. how crazy is that?
We played fitba all day, ate in each other’s house, backed each other up in fights, occasionally fell out, went camping together to Tighnabruich for weeks during the summer.
But we had to go to different schools? Madness!
After leaving school aged 16, we both started working in the shipyards, Jim was a joiner and I was an engineer.
Jim was my mate, my best mate but our families moved when we were 18 and we lost touch although I’d hear news about him on the grapevine every now and then.
Well, with the gig coming up tonight, I was thinking about him the other day and decided to look him up.
There he was in his Facebook, smiling away with his wife and family and his contact details below.
So I sent him a text, he texted back almost immediately and after a few more of these I picked up the phone and we chatted away for the next few hours.
Jim is still a great guy and we got on like a house on fire, I’m delighted how life has worked out for him. He’s married again, has an 8 year old daughter, still works in the shipyards and is happy with his lot.
I’m delighted for him and we arranged to meet up soon.
So guess where we are going tonight?
I’m going to the Stranglers at the O2 and he is going to Tighnabruich! J
Would have been fab if he was going to the gig, but we’re meeting for a curry soon and I’ve agreed to go to Tighnabruich with him next time.