This weekend a true Glasgow institution returns as the Sally Gunnel rides again.
Yes, the Tunnel is back this Saturday June 5, the home of the city’s most glamorous dance music fans and the place where some of the biggest names in world dance music came to play.
What made the Tunnel really special was the residents from Michael Silky Kilkie to Tevendale and McCreery, Lisa Littlewood, Simon Foy and Harry Miller.
And now they’re back, for one night on a special one-off stream The Tunnel – The Glory Years – raising money for the Catherine McEwan Foundation.
With all the old names and memories galore, it’s not to be missed – we caught up with old Silky Kilkie for more.
What made you decide to launch a Tunnel stream?
I’ve been involved in loads or really good streams over lockdown for brands and clubnights that I’ve played regularly at over the years like Streetrave and Colours, and have been filmed at places where I’ve held residencies and done gigs before such as The Arches, SWG3 and The Radisson RED Sky Bar. Myself and Jon Mancini along with Graham at The Radisson RED have also grown our own Guilty Pleasures brand of streams, but I realised probably the biggest and most influential part of my DJ career was spent in the Tunnel and there hadn’t been any way to celebrate that in a stream as yet. So I thought I’d try and pull a quality line up together to celebrate the time I spent there along with the other residents.
Were you surprised no one else had done it?
To be honest not really, as the club in its original form is no longer there and as most of us have moved on with our careers or ‘proper’ jobs and mostly just DJ as a hobby now, or some not at all.
Obviously, you were an innate part of the Tunnel’s glory years – was it important to you that one of the originals did something to commemorate the club?
Yeah I think it was important that the people at the very centre of those amazing years not just presented the soundtrack to the stream but had a real input on how it should look, sound, run best. Which they did. I’d have hated someone to try and cash in or do it for the wrong reasons who wasn’t an integral part week in week our, as we all were.
What did and does the Tunnel mean to you?
The tunnel is where I really cut my teeth as a DJ, and learnt the art of being a resident and all that comes with it, programming the whole night, warming the clubbers up, taking the crowd on a musical journey, setting the scene for guests, all the things you don’t learn when you are a guest DJ. So it means a lot in terms of learning my craft but I also had some of the most amazing nights of my life and made many friends who I’m still friends with to this day.
Was it ahead of its time?
100% it blew everything in this country away and was on a par with the so-called English superclubs. The design, the sound system, the toilets, the guest DJs, the music.
What made it so special?
Other than all of the above, the people and the atmosphere made it. From the moment people joined the queue, sometimes waiting for over an hour, the anticipation to get in, to walking down the stairs the music getting louder and on to the dance floor, to dancing in the car park opposite afterwards, you just couldn’t beat it. It was electric. And the DJs knew what they wanted and made sure they got it.
What are your favourite Tunnel memories? Any specific stories or moments stand out?
The Ark on a Friday, a fridge full of vodka and Red Bull, me getting into trouble for cramming all my pals into the DJ box, and just having the best time doing something I loved.
What can we expect from the stream? Who do you think will be the highlights?
A musical journey through the best years of the Tunnel, some incredible production, amazing old footage being incorporated, and a group of ageing DJs having a ball!
Oh and if you’re lucky you might see the original big T and the caged DJ box!
How did you pick the DJs and how did they react when asked?
To be honest there was no picking and choosing, I knew exactly who should be involved and thankfully I got everyone I wanted, and everyone who shaped the club in those years in my opinion. Everyone was delighted to get involved, the club holds a special place in all of our hearts. It’s going to be amazing to see everyone again, all at the same time.
You’re raising money for a great cause – how did you choose and why?
The Catherine McEwan Foundation is always my chosen charity for events as it’s very close to my heart but I ran it past all DJs and was happy to split amongst other charities anyone wanted to support but they were all more than happy to support the CMF as it’s such a great cause.
How can people help?
Just join us on Saturday and if you enjoy the stream and can spare a bit of cash then click one of the links or text one of the numbers which will be on screen. It would be hugely appreciated
How would you suggest people best prepare for the stream – what’s your ultimate Glory Years insider tips?
Make sure your fridge is full of vodka and red bull, clear yourself a space for dancing, tune in on Facebook or Twitch and be prepared to relive some of the best times of your lives with some incredible musical memories.
Go to www.facebook.com/thetunnelglasgow to find out more and check out the stream on Sat June 5