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Simple Minds: We’ve been around the world but, for a great cause like this, there is nothing better than being home

Frontman, Jim Kerr and Simple Minds play Slessor Gardens, Dundee.
Frontman, Jim Kerr and Simple Minds play Slessor Gardens, Dundee.

Rock star Jim Kerr last night spoke of his pride after his band Simple Minds were honoured at the Scottish Music Awards.

The singer said: “We started it 40 years ago with only one thing in mind … to try to be in a great live band and take our music around the world. And four decades later here we are.

“That in itself has been the best reward. We’ve enjoyed a lifetime of writing songs, being creative and playing in front of audiences around the globe.

“So to get recognition beyond that – in our home city of Glasgow and here in Scotland – is absolutely fantastic. It’s very special.”

The Minds were back in their home city to collect the Outstanding Contribution to Music Award and closed the ceremony at the Old Fruitmarket, in Glasgow, with a performance of some of their biggest hits.

Jim said he and guitarist Charlie Burchill grew up just a 15-minute drive away in Toryglen adding: “The venue is in the same location – Albion Street – where I used to go every Friday to meet my mother coming home from work on pay day. She worked in a factory in Albion Street.

“It’s also a five-minute walk from the site of the former Rottenrow Hospital where I was born in 1959.

“So this is a part of the world which helped make us. You could look on this award as us coming full circle. We wanted to go around the world with Simple Minds and now we’re back working in the city again.

“We were given an award for the first time by Nordoff Robbins Scotland more than 21 years ago at the City Chambers in Glasgow.

“Back then, this amazing charity – which raises money to fund music therapy – was in its infancy.

“The charity has been synonymous with music throughout our career. The fact they still seek to achieve great things and put so much effort into their cause means they’ve almost become part of rock and roll themselves.

“We’re delighted to be here.”

Another legendary Scots group, The Incredible String Band, were also honoured last night alongside the next generation of the country’s music talents, like Be Charlotte and Joesef.

The 21st Specsavers Scottish Music Awards marked St Andrew’s Day in style, with Edith Bowman hosting the event at Glasgow’s Old Fruitmarket.

Sunday Post columnist Donald MacLeod, who is chairman of the fundraising committee, said: “We feel very proud that our annual night of music and cultural celebration also raises vital funds for Nordoff Robbins while celebrating the living legends and rising stars of the Scottish music scene.

“From Simple Minds to Josef, Twin Atlantic to Tom Walker and more, we really can’t thank all the artists enough who have come together to support Nordoff Robbins. Their support ensures we can provide music therapy to those who need it most across the country and it is truly enriching lives.”

The Scottish Music Awards has been the main fundraising event for music therapy charity, Nordoff Robbins.

Funds raised on the night are a vital part of the charity’s ability to provide music therapy to vulnerable and isolated people with a range of challenges.