Toast the New Year in with Skerryvore

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Do you remember when first footing was a big thing, and the living room was full of visitors from not long after midnight when the bells rung, and the boats had sounded the arrival of the New Year.

My late mother swears that we had 42 folk in the living room at the croft in Benderloch one famous New Year – and one of them was playing the accordion.

I remember that as a kid and it was not a big room either!

Well, it is a bit different this year, of course, as with Covid spread as dangerous as ever, we are encouraged to bring in the bells by ourselves. We often enjoy the Tralee Bay fireworks, sometimes from the comfort of our back door with a dram. This year we may do the same.

But we will have an accordionist in the lounge – and a piper too. Two of them in fact. And more. Multi award-winning band Skerryvore have announced that they are coming round first footing – well virtually so.

It is first footing but not as we know it, as the eight-piece won’t be knocking at our door with a piece of coal for the fire or with a box of shortbread in hand. Instead they will be encouraging us all to get settled in for the evening, get the whisky poured at 7pm ready to toast the New Year in as they perform a special live stream that can be enjoyed from the comfort of your own sofa from anywhere in the world.

The show begins with a tour of Robert Burns’ birthplace for a chorus of Auld Lang Syne no doubt before Norrie MacIver, the Skipinnish frontman, gets the unique gig under way.

Then it’s Skerryvore Live – not at Mossfield or Inveraray Castle – but centre stage in your lounge. The band will relay ‘A Happy New Year’ to those who cannot be with us this year.

Daniel Gillespie, the man on the box, told us: ‘The festive season is usually one of the busiest periods of the year for us as we take to the road and tour around Scotland celebrating the Christmas season with a run of gigs for fans across the country. We will really miss that this year.’

But adding to the atmosphere, artists, and friends from across the world will drop in with good wishes for 2021.

Remember Everyday Heroes – the charity single that the band released to raise money for NHS charities? In April it went to number one in just 12 hours of being released. Only this month, it won the band an MG Trad award. Well, on January 1, viewers will have the chance to win a unique signed and framed vinyl version of that single. Amazing!

So that everyone can get involved, the socially-minded band won’t have a fixed ticket price, instead in the 2020 festive spirit you just pay what you can at

www.skerryvore.com/new-years-day-live

Then sit back and enjoy Skerryvore doing what they do best – playing live music!

Slainte Mhath – here is to 2021 – we hope it’s your best yet!