Tonight, some of Scotland’s biggest names came together for a night of livestream entertainment whilst raising money for fundraising initiative Masks for Scotland.
Organised by DJ and presenter Edith Bowman, ‘For the Love of Scotland’aimed to raise funds for the Masks for Scotland appeal, founded earlier this month by Professor Jill Belch of the University of Dundee in response to the urgent need for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for community frontline medical teams across Scotland, with 100% of the money raised funding the provision of PPE for key workers across the country. ‘For the Love of Scotland’ was set up to help the initiative reach its £200,000 target and over the course of four hours, the show generated over £43,000 in donations, bringing the total to over £143,000.
Edith Bowman said, “Masks for Scotland are desperately trying to raise money for PPE to protect frontline workers. That’s why we’re here, that’s why we’ve got all these amazing people.” The outstanding line-up was watched by fans around the world, including the one and only Billie Eilish who commented her congratulations on YouTube!
The fundraiser, which was hosted on Gigs in ScotlandFacebookand YouTube this evening, saw the likes of Alan Cumming, Annie Lennox, Sir Chris Hoy, Jack Lowden, Karen Gillan, Martin Compston, Ncuti Gatwa, Peter Capadi, Sam Heughan, Simon Neil (Biffy Clyro) and more join Bowman for a night of musical performances, literature, poetry, comedic laughs and heart-warming chats, as the stars paid homage to the incredible medical workers across Scotland. The event also showcased inspiring stories from the community, highlighting the many ways the nation is coming together during lockdown.
First up, Jack Lowden who kicked the whole idea off when he sent Edith a message saying we need to do something! Lowden said to Edith, “It’s hugely important – a lot of this tonight that folk are going to do is a lot of fun and nonsense. But at the root of it, is a really serious situation that we really shouldn’t be in – we’re asking people to go to work unprepared. So this is a bit of fun tonight, but it’s for a really good cause.” Jack did his own version of the famous Trainspotting speech ‘Choose Life’, with the core message being to Stay at Home, and Protect the NHS.
Alan Cummings wrote and performed his very own song ‘Keep Your Peckers Up’, providing viewers with a comedic laugh, followed by Edith giving shoutouts to fans who sent in pictures of their own family and friends working in the NHS.
Next, Martin Compston demonstrated some of his Spanish skills which he’s been learning in lockdown. He said, “I feel a bit unprepared, I don’t have a piano under my stairs so fair play to Alan! We’re trying to take it a day at a time, it’s surreal times and fair play to you for getting everybody together. It’s an amazing thing, we’ve got people out there who literally are putting their life on the line. The very basic thing they deserve is basic equipment – my brother is a frontline carer.”
Speaking about how he’s trying to take a step back and enjoy time at home that he wouldn’t normally have, Martin said, “This is amazing and it’s a very productive time for me, but we’ve got to be careful with the message of make sure you’re out doing stuff. You feel a bit useless at times, so if people just want to chill out for a bit and take this time for themselves. You don’t have to beat yourself up cause you’re not running 10ks every day. For a long time I’ve been desperate to learn another language, so I’m trying to learn a bit of Spanish.”
Heading into the second hour of Edith’s epic livestream, Ross Wilson from Blue Rose Code joined for a beautiful acoustic musical performance while Edith continued to give shoutouts from fans to their close friends and family worked on the frontline, with messages of support from fans watching from Argentina, Canada and America.
Next, Scottish musician Rachel Sermanni told Edith online gigs are just as nerve-wracking as normal ones before a beautiful acoustic performance of ‘Wish I Showed My Love’.
Actor Peter Mullan provided viewers with the perfect bedtime story with a Scottish twist, as he read ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’. Peter said, “Lockdown is pretty much like being an unemployed actor!”
Stuart Murdoch from Belle and Sebastian joined the livestream, speaking to Edith about missing his bandmates in lockdown, before performing an acoustic version of ‘She’s Losing It’. Stuart said, “Scotland has done us proud in the last few weeks!”
Viewers were treated to an iconic performance from singer-songwriter Annie Lennox, as she sang a beautiful rendition of the traditional Scottish song ‘Dream Angus’, stating that it was a ‘lullaby for Scotland’ and to help all those struggling mum and dads in lockdown as they try to get the kids to bed.
Stuart Braithwaite from Mogwai joined Edith for a chat and did a rare solo performance of Mogwai’s ‘Party in the Dark’.
Richard Rankin was up next, saying he’d made some new friends in the virtual backstage area and has been passing his time at home by playing guitar, singing and cooking a good steak. Richard said, “Who knew I needed Peter Mullan reading Goldilocks, this has been missing from my life for so long! Masks for Scotland is a necessary and very worthwhile cause to be getting involved with so it’s the least I can do.”
On Outlander, he said “We have such an incredible fanbase, we wouldn’t be where we are now if it wasn’t for them – we’re in Season 5 and still going strong. I think this season is one of the best yet.”
Next, Sex Education’s Ncuti Gatwa spoke to Edith about his NHS worker mum who got Ncuti his first job as a cleaner in a health clinic in Edinburgh when he was 15. He last saw Edith at BAFTA Scotland and said, “It was good to come home and have a proper Scottish shindig!”
Ncuti also said, “None of us could have anticipated a pandemic like this, it’s so important what you’re doing Edith to get money to people who need this equipment the most. The NHS is such an amazing thing that we all have in this country, so let’s help them.” He confirmed they ARE doing a third season of Sex Education, and although he’s not sure when they’ll start filming, he promised – “it will be epic!” Ncuti had a bone to pick with Edith for putting him on the show after “living legends” Peter Mullan and Annie Lennox!
Jumanji star Karen Gillan joined Edith from the west coast of America to discuss working on the writing side of filmmaking, plus Karen’s new reality TV obsession. Karen said, “I’ve been watching a lot of reality TV… I watched Too Hot to Handle on Netflix – it couldn’t have come out at a better time.”
Author Ian Rankin told a personal story of how important it is to get PPE for care workers, as he said, “My youngest son is in a care home for young adults. When we clap for carers, it should be as wide a clap as we can give.”
Ian told Edith he’s managed to finish an Inspector Rebus novel TODAY, showing us the manuscript and even reading a snippet from ‘A Song for the Dark Times’, out later this year. Talking about the book, Rankin said, “I’m so happy the book isn’t set during Coronavirus times, cause Rebus would be stuck in his flat!”
Joining Edith, two out of three Biffy Clyro band members made an appearance as Simon Neil performed ‘Instant History’ and bassist James admitted “It was nice to see that guy play, I miss him so much!”
Next, Ally McCoist updated Edith with his lockdown life and Judy Murrayadmitted to feeling very lucky to live in the Perthshire countryside. Laughing with Edith, she said, “My bike has got a life of its own and I am developing quads to rival Chris Hoy!”
Conveniently enough, it was then time to speak to the world-renowned athlete as Sir Chris Hoy chatted to the Scottish presenter saying, “Homeschooling is hard, my kids don’t have a clue what’s going on! I’ve been making videos of parents trying to help parents teach their kids how to cycle.”
Travis frontman Fran Healy performed a heartwarming ‘Flowers in the Window’, while Sanjeev Kohli gave everyone a laugh with his Navid impressions. Jean Johansson gave a shout out to all the teachers as parents struggle with homeschooling while Peter Capaldi read an uplifting Kurt Vonnegut extract.
Scottish mother-daughter comedic duo Janey Godley and Ashley Storriemade an appearance, complete with homemade smoke machine.
Outlander star Sam Heughan joined Edith for a cocktail class like no other, saying he’d just learned to make cocktails online with whatever he had left in his cupboard. Making the ‘Isolation Sour’, Sam pledged to donate a PPE package for every post by fans making the cocktail on social media. “You wouldn’t think whisky and wine would work well together, but we’re going to try it out! What a fantastic evening, the amount you’ve raised is remarkable and we want everyone to be healthy. Thank you to everyone working hard – stay safe!”
KT Tunstall joined Edith from the sunshine to catch up on the strangeness of life under lockdown asking, “Has anyone else been having absolutely mental dreams?? Thank you for doing what you’re doing Edith, it’s amazing!”
Playing the song that shot her out of the cannon at the very beginning,‘Black Horse And The Cherry Tree’, KT Tunstall admitted to still having absolutely no idea what it’s the song is actually about!
Mark Bonnar joined the livestream, complete with ‘I LOVE THE NHS’ painted on his face. The two caught up on life in lockdown, Mark Bonnar said “I can’t believe the response to Quiz, it’s been smashing to get the response we have on social media.” Mark also performed a hilarious version of Iron Maiden’s ‘Run to the Hills’, with new lockdown lyrics.
Irvine Welsh was up next from Edinburgh saying, “I don’t know how long I’ll keep enjoying it but right now it’s fine! I pick an album every morning that I’ve not listened to for years, and I listen to that and I’m getting back into reading.”
Following Welsh, Lauren Mayberry from the band CHVRCHES joined Edithon her epic livestream, saying, “This is probably the most human interaction I’ve had in a long time. Once a week, we do a quiz on the internet with our pals and Matt from The National was on it the other week and he did really well!”
James McAvoy joined the party from London and added, “Everybody’s got a party piece and I’ve got nothing!” Talking about our key workers he said, “They’re going into war without their personal protection, but I’m so proud that I live in a county that prioritises something like the NHS. Right now, they need our help so they can help us. It’s an honour for me to be able to use whatever daft fame I’ve had in my career to help bring attention to it.”
Edith made James a birthday chocolate cupcake, complete with a rendition of Happy Birthday for yesterday!
Twin Atlantic’s frontman, Sam McTrusty brought the show to a beautiful end, as he sang his own version of ‘I Say A Little Prayer’ by Aretha Franklin, dedicated to his mum, ‘Champagne Supernova’ by Oasis dedicated to his sister and lastly ‘All You Need is Love’ by The Beatles, dedicated to his wife. All three of his close family members work in the NHS, and Sam thanked them and all those across Scotland working on the frontline.
Sam said, “I’m working from home looking after our daughter, my wife has gone back into working for the NHS. It is a bit scary as soon as there’s someone in your household walking into danger like that. My mum and my younger sister do the same so it’s a daily worry for me. It’s just a crazy time and to see someone be that fearless and selfless, is amazing.”
Throughout the show, Edith Bowman regaled the audience with heartwarming stories sent in by the public, showcasing the many ways Scotland has kept its spirits up over a very difficult few weeks. During the evening, Edith shared a video from The Van T’s band member Chloe, who is a staff nurse at the Queen Elizabeth hospital and is currently working between theatre and the critical care department looking after patients with COVID-19, Chloe encouraged people to stay at home saying, “We’re doing our part, so you do your part.”
Reading out comments from the livestream, a viewer said, “Think how much you’d pay for a ticket to an evening’s entertainment with this crowd – then donate that!”
‘For The Love of Scotland’ was a huge success with fans across the world joining in across Gigs in Scotland’s Facebook and YouTube for an evening of entertainment, thanks and appreciation for key medical workers across the country whilst raising urgent funds for PPE, showing that there really is no place like home.
You can still show your support for Masks for Scotland and those carrying out exceptional work in this unprecedented time by donating directly here.