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Celtic TV on song for Hoops superfan Rod Stewart

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SUPERSTAR, Rod Stewart is a well-known face at Hoops games, but when the singer can’t make it to Paradise, he logs on to Celtic TV to keep up with what’s happening.

And that proved to be a rub of the green for songwriter, John McLaughlin and his band, Johnny Mac & The Faithful, who provide most of the pre-match music for Celtic TV and Celtic Park itself.

Rod heard a backing track written by John that was the background music to a clip of the Hoops training – and he contacted Celtic TV to track down the tune.

He said: “I was watching the Bhoys coming out to train on Celtic TV. There was a backing track, no vocal, just an instrumental. I was looking for who wrote it. I turned it into a song called Julia on the last album.

“We searched for a year. It turned out to be Johnny Mac, and a friendship was born. He said he had a band and he’d like to do more gigs.

“I said, ‘Right, you’re on the tour. You’re going to be playing to 30,000 a night’. He’s been magnificent – best opening act I’ve ever had.”

Johnny Mac & The Faithful, who have recorded many Celtic songs on CDs, then went on Rod’s summer arena tour as his support act, playing in front of over 500,000 fans.

Following the Celtic TV revelation, John told how Rod paved the way for the tour. The songwriter said:  “One day he heard me singing along to songs in the car and told me I was a great singer and that I was going on tour to get the crowd going.

“I didn’t believe it until the contracts turned up six weeks before the tour. I thought, ‘I’ll have to get a band together and write some songs’.

“It’s incredible to be playing to 30,000 people each night. Rod did everything for us. He introduces us at every show. Rod has become a best pal. He invites me to his house and I’ve had dinner at his home in Essex with Penny.

“He’s been great to me and the rest of the band. I’m 54 and never thought I’d be doing this at this stage in my career.”

North of the border, they will now be teaming up with Rod again at gigs at Glasgow’s Hydro and in Aberdeen later in the year.

Rod said: “Johnny and the guys went down a storm on the summer dates so I’m delighted they want to come on the road with us for the winter dates.

“I love Johnny Mac & The Faithful. I love the energy in their performance and how they look like they are having so much fun.”




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