Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

FINAL SAY Ray Laidlaw

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

FINAL SAY Ray Laidlaw

Article excerpt

Byline: Ray Laidlaw

We do the first show in Berwick and the last one in Durham... and there are 48 dates in between.

Me and Billy (Mitchell) will be like Morecambe and Wise every night in bed with a bag of chips. It'll be something like that.

When Lindisfarne started off we were a student band. The music you get into in your student days stays with you for life. So a lot of the show we do is like a soundtrack to people's lives.

Although there were a lot of fanatical Lindisfarne fans, there was also a big group of people who had Lindisfarne as their second favourite band... so in that way we were a bit like Newcastle United.

In the Black Country we used to get loads of bikers coming... these really ferocious looking lads would be singing along to Winter Song with tears in their eyes.

The show we're touring has loads of visuals - archive photos and video which people haven't seen before.

People like to see the photo we didn't choose for the album. We all want to hear the stuff we didn't know at the time.

We're not pretending to be the band.

The band doesn't really exist any more.

There are people playing the songs and that's fine, but the band isn't there anymore.

We do 12 or 14 songs stripped right back to the way they were when they were written. It's not an 'instead of', it's an 'as well as'. I still love the full versions too.

When anyone had a new song, we would audition them in someone's house. We used to call them 'front room rehearsals'. If everyone didn't like it, then we never used it. It had to be a full house.

It's very organic. As you do it, it jogs your memory and you remember things you might have completely forgotten about. It's bizarre when you think how intense some things were at the time... you can't believe that you could possibly forget them, but you do.

The punters remind us of things too... we always go for a couple of pints and a natter in the bar afterwards.

Billy (Mitchell) is unique because he was there before the beginning and all the way through out on the road with us... and then joined the band. …

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