Review: And I Ran with The Gang

Alan Longmuir, on stage at 'And I Ran With The Gang' playing at Le Monde at Fringe Festival.
Alan Longmuir, on stage at 'And I Ran With The Gang' playing at Le Monde at Fringe Festival.

And I Ran with The Gang

Le Monde, George Street (Venue 47), 7.00 p.m.

Music like this couldn’t die ...

Sunday night upstairs at Le Monde and there’s more than a hint of Rollermania in the air.

There’s a tartan scarf flying in the audience and everyone is up singing ‘Shang-A-Lang’ like it’s 1975 all over again.

Well, everyone did say music like this couldn’t die …

‘And I Ran with The Gang’ is the story of the Bay City Rollers, specifically, the original Roller, Alan Longmuir.

It’s 40 years since he was part of a band band that inspired a worldwide phenomenon, Rollermania, and this show brings him back to the stage for the musical finale.

It’s a remarkable story - a plumber (retired) from Edinburgh who formed a band which, under the management of Tam Paton (now there’s a dark subject for a Fringe show), cracked the charts on both sides of the Atlantic, spawned a TV show and made millions, although not necessarily for the band,, and saw several reunions as well as an on going court battle to reclaim their missing monies.

The narrative is rich in detail.

Anyone growing up in Edinburgh will be taken on a trip down memory lane to bars and clubs long since gone, and will instantly recognise the streets and places name-checked, and for visitors, it brings the back story vividly to life.

Told by a cast of three, it rattles through the story in chronological fashion before celebrating the music - the songs which can still fill a dance floor all those decades later.

Only at the Fringe could you see a bonfa fide pop legend singing his hits and staging a Q & A in which audience members were happy to admit that, as teenagers, they’d sat on his garden wall waiting for a glimpse of their hero!

For anyone who grew up in the era of Rollermania,’ And I Ran With The Gang’ is a wonderful trip back in time.

Bring your own tartan …