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The Secret Millionaire

Nick Leslau is a self made property tycoon worth £200m (His company owns Alton Towers). He was the subject of tonight’s Channel 4 programme ‘Secret Millionaire’. These two elements would normally have me reaching for the off button. Indeed the opening scenes where Leslau was swanning about his Mayfair mansion with two wee white dogs and showing us his swimming pool, cinema, housekeeper etc. was setting the scene for one of my rants. Instead as the programme progressed and Nick travelled to Possil in Glasgow. He posed as someone getting experience in social work and the cameras were explained to participants as the making of a documentary on his progress.

As it turned out Leslau came over as a very good humoured and sympathetic character who was obviously deeply touched by the environment and conditions he encountered. He helped out at a Riding for Disabled Group and a Disability Forum Centre as well as meeting people who had suffered personal tragedy. He seemed to find the whole experience very moving and inspiring.

Of course the punchline of the whole thing was for Nick Leslau to hand over substantial sums of money to some of those he’d met. The Disabled Riding Centre copped for over £100,000, the Centre got over £200,000. A man struck blind in adulthood was given £10,000 for Guide Dogs for the Blind and a season ticket for Ibrox (I’m sure there’s a joke there somewhere).

I found the programme quite uplifting. I think I must be getting sentimental in my old age.

The Daily Record had an article about the programme in advance. It’s HERE

Scotland Goes Pop! (5b and 6b)

For Richard (see comments on Scotland Goes Pop 6).
Here we have footage of Jimmy McCullough with Thunderclap Newman, Stone the Crows and a newspaper cutting (at the end) about him being in the band Blue. Wiki may indeed have some duff info Richard but not on this occasion it would seem.

Scotland Goes Pop! (6)

Especially for Fern Cake (see comments on Scotland Goes Pop! (4)) This is Blue from 1977. The band comprised former members (at one time or another) of The Poets, The Marmalade, Stone the Crows and Wings (Jimmy McCulloch). Perhaps the most surprising thing about them was that their first single Little Jody was enthusiastically promoted (and produced) by John Peel!

They actually sued Blue (mark 2 boy band) a few years ago for the right to be known as Blue as they are still apparently on the go playing British Legions and Miners Welfares nation wide.

A Bigrab guilty pleasure, with all its total anti-style, supercilious grinning and naffness, I’m with Fern Cake on this one 8)

Scotland Goes Pop! (5)

Stone the Crows’ (the band name came from Led Zeppelin’s manager Peter Grant. It was his comment when he first heard them) star shone briefly between 1970 and 1973. The axis for the band was provided by Les Harvey (brother of Alex who tragically died on stage in 1972) and Maggie Bell. The heart went out of the band with Harvey’s death and Maggie Bell went on to have a solo career. It really is a mystery why Maggie was never a bigger name as she had the demeanor and presence of a star. She’s often been compared to Janis Joplin. It’s sad to realise that she’s perhaps known best for two tv cop themes (Hazel and Taggart) and for a chart hit with BA Robertson (Hold Me).

There’s a good info site for Stone the Crows HERE

Here they are with a cracking slow blues, Danger Zone.

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