Live in Preston: Scottish rockers GUN set to play in the city

Scottish rockers GUN head to Preston
Scottish rockers GUN head to Preston
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There's few British rock bands who can boast highly successful tours with the likes of The Rolling Stones, Def Leppard and Bon Jovi, or having a string of hit singles, including greats like Better Days and a cover of Cameo's Word Up. But GUN are one of them.

Since forming in Glasgow in 1987, GUN have since gone on to become one of Britain's best loved rock bands.

EXPLICIT WARNING: This music video is uncensored and some people may be offended by the content.

Consisting of brothers Guiliano 'Jools' and Dante Gizzi, who provide guitar and vocals, Andy Carr on bass, drummer Paul McManus and Thomas C Gentry, also on guitar, which is their most recent formation, GUN enjoyed their most successful phase during the late 80s and 90s.

It was in 1990 that GUN set off as support on the The Rolling Stones' European tour. Frontman Dante remembers this time as a highlight of his career, saying: "The Stones were something of the biggest deal - well they still are and remain to this day the biggest deal - and to play alongside and get that opportunity.

"It was a month of touring throughout Europe, playing you know Munich stadium, all over, including Basel, Portugal. We played Hampden here in Glasgow. These are massive shows.

Expect a mix of old and new when GUN play in Preston

Expect a mix of old and new when GUN play in Preston

"I'll never forgot, we were doing what we call 'toilet tours' in America and it was so demoralising. You're having to play and there's nobody there at these shows you're doing in America, and everybody is getting on each other nerves, like you do, like you've heard.

"We ended up getting a call whilst we were on that tour that The Rolling Stones were really interested in getting the band to play on the European leg of the tour, but you know, don't hold your breath because there's another 60 bands who have been offered it, and some of them were big bands. Even Prince played with The Rolling Stones. Living Colour also played with them, and Siouxsie and the Banshees were offered it.

"So there was a lot of big bands were getting offered this and we were like, 'I don't think there's a chance or hope in hell we're going to get this, but we'll see.'

"And in those days there was no communication via mobile phones etc, it was all done by fax machines. And obviously we were in the States and our management received a fax from the Stones saying, 'What will it take for you to do the tour? What things do you need to make it happen?'

"And I remember being told that there's so many bands that were wanting this and wanting that - there was a lot of demands - and we sent the same fax back and we had just written in big writing on the fax - We will take whatever you can give us.

"And I think that's kind of how we got the tour."

Dante then went on to talk about meeting the big man himself - Mick Jagger. You could hear the admiration in his voice when he said: "I'll never forget the time in Munich. There was a party after the show, the gig in Munich, in this really funky, super cool nightclub. And they have the cordoned off area for the bands, tons of security, lots of beautiful girls everywhere. And here's these guys from Scotland, from Glasgow.

"And I remember Mick Jagger coming in and I was like 'God, I didn't think he would come in.'

"And I said to the guys in the band, 'I'm going to go over and speak to him and have a wee chat and just thank him for having us on the tour.

"And I went over to him and I goes, 'Hi Mick, listen I just wanted to say a massive thank you so much. Do you mind me just asking, why did you pick us? Because we knew there were a lot of bands getting offered it. Why did you pick us?'

"And then he turned round and said 'Well you reminded me of us when we first started out.'

"And I was kind of blown away by that. And I was like 'That's amazing. Thank you so much. Can I buy you a beer?' And he's like,'No you're sorted man, it's a free bar.'

"And it was just the best thing ever. It was unbelievable. What an experience it was."

GUN won't be supported The Rolling Stones when they hit Preston on Thursday, they will be headlining their own show. And Dante is very enthusiastic about the show. He said: "I'm really looking forward to it. I can't remember the last time we played Preston actually, we've definitely done it in the past. It's been such a long time.

"It will still be very energetic. We love playing all the old songs, there'll be a lot of the old songs that kind of crossover.

"And obviously a lot of the new album and stuff like that. The new album has been going down really well. And when you play new material, you know it kinda gives you that extra wee push because you just want people to hear the new stuff as well as the old classics, like Better Days and Word Up and stuff like that, which we'll do anyway.

"It's a great night listening to all the songs, it will be very nostalgic but also be very energetic. I just can't wait to do it. We're looking forward to it."

GUN will performing at Preston's LIVE Venue on Thursday, November 1. Doors open at 7pm and support on the night comes from Austin Gold and Kris Barras. This show is a standing only gig, and under 16s must be accompanied by someone aged 18 or over. Tickets cost £19, available online at https://prestonguildhall.co.uk/shows/gun/ or by calling 01772 80 44 44.