FRETS can now announce that the recently cancelled acoustic concert by THE BLUEBELLS has now been rescheduled for Friday 28th August later this year at the Strathaven Hotel. All tickets purchased for the original date (20th March) are valid for the 28th August concert. Tickets for The Bluebells’ acoustic concert sold out in less than a day, we’re all excited to announce this new date. Anyone who would like a ticket refund please email info@fretscreative.com

We are living through strange times, unprecedented is the word most associated with COVID 19, with good reason. We hope you are all keeping well and adhering to Scottish Government guideline, and look forward to seeing you again as soon as possible.

THE BLUEBELLS / The Strathaven Hotel, Friday 20th March

Hi all,
Unfortunately we are going to have to postpone The Bluebells acoustic concert at FRETS in the Strathaven Hotel this Friday 20th March.

COVID-19 official statement : THE BLUEBELLS / FRETS CONCERTS

It is with a heavy heart that, due to the ongoing issues with the COVID-19 outbreak and in conjunction with guidelines issued by the Scottish Government, we have to postpone
The Bluebells acoustic concert at FRETS in the Strathaven Hotel on Friday 20th March.

Tickets will be valid for the rescheduled date which will be announced as soon as possible. We are working hard behind the scenes, while considering the best health interests of our audience, artists, staff and the community at large, which remains our main consideration. Please stay safe and keep informed while following the public health guidelines.

We are looking at possible dates later in the year, once we have confirmed a date we will contact you regarding the event.

Please email us at info@fretscreative.com with any questions, we will post soon regarding more information about tickets.

RODDY WOOMBLE in acoustic concert at FRETS on Thursday 28th May, at the Strathaven Hotel.

Tickets on sale now at the Eventbrite link below https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/roddy-woomble-in-concert-tickets-99007370711

Roddy Woomble

Roddy Woomble is widely regarded as one of Scotland’s finest songwriters. Known for his enigmatic lyrics, warm baritone voice and consummate gift for a tune, Roddy has released five solo albums to date – ‘My Secret Is My Silence’ (2006), ‘Before The Ruin’ (2008, with Kris Drever and John McCusker), ‘The Impossible Song & Other Songs’ (2011), ‘Listen To Keep’ (2013), and ‘The Deluder’ (2017). Roddy’s first poetry collection ‘Instrumentals’ was released in 2016.

For the past 25 years Roddy is also the frontman of much loved IDLEWILD, who have released eight studio albums, and toured worldwide as a headline act, but also as special guests of R.E.M., Pearl Jam and U2 amongst others.


Acoustic Concert at FRETS 

Friday 24th April , The Strathaven Hotel – 7pm


Tickets available from the Eventbrite link below https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-skinner-songbook-tickets-97196040975

THE SKINNER SONGBOOK is a new troubadour concert show produced by vocalist Grahame Skinner. The idea of the show is to highlight songs Grahame enjoys performing live as a vocalist, including songs from his own repertoire (Jazzateers / Hipsway / Cowboy Mouth), and songs by other artists (including Scott Walker / Lee Hazlewood / Frank Sinatra / Lou Reed / Orange Juice / Josef K). The music in the show is stripped down and performed as torch songs, focussing on the interpretive voice and lyrics.

Grahame Skinner first came to prominence as a vocalist on the Jazzateers eponymously titled debut album on the Rough Trade label. Jazzateers were signed to legendary Postcard Records (and managed by label head Alan Horne), but after the demise of Postcard, Jazzateers joined label-mates Aztec Camera and the Go-Betweens in signing to Rough Trade. Skinner’s laconic Lou Reed meets Iggy Pop drawl worked perfectly with Jazzateers, resulting in international acclaim for the album.

After the demise of Jazzateers, Skinner regrouped and formed a new group, Hipsway, who would go on to significant commercial success with their debut album, which sired single success with Broken Years, Ask The Lord, The Honeythief, and  Long White Car. The group toured internationally, with Europe and the USA being particularly popular countries for Hipsway. The Honeythief was a big hit single in the USA, and the group based themselves in New York to record their second album, Scratch The Surface.

Exhausted from years of recording and touring, Hipsway disbanded, though Skinner kept working on musical projects for a period before taking a complete break from being involved with the major label industry. However, on receiving an offer by Hamburg based label independent label Marina Records to record, he returned to singing and writing, releasing two album on Marina with his new group, Cowboy Mouth.

In recent years Skinner has worked on a variety of projects, most notably reforming Hipsway to record an album “Smoke and Dreams” and return to live touring to considerable success.


Here is a link to Grahame Skinner performing a version of his first single release (Jazzateers – 16 Reasons) on the BBC Quay Sessions.


An Evening With Robert Forster – FRETS, The Strathaven Hotel,

Friday 29th May 2020.

Tickets on sale NOW, available exclusively at this link – https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/robert-forster-acoustic-concert-tickets-95584761595

Robert Forster – One Bird In The Sky

It is with the greatest pleasure that FRETS can announce An Evening With Robert Forster, which takes place at the Strathaven Hotel on Friday 29th May 2020. Robert will be performing an acoustic concert that will feature songs from his solo albums and prior work with the Go-Betweens. Like many others, I first became aware of the Go-Betweens on their 7″ release on Postcard Records, and saw the group perform live many many times over the years.

Robert’s previous 2019 concert in Glasgow in St.Lukes was a major triumph, and we are delighted and honoured that Robert’s concert at FRETS is his only Scottish date.

The Robert Forster Timeline

1957 – June 29: Robert Forster born in Brisbane, Australia

1976 – Meets Grant McLennan (b. 12 Feb 1958) at a drama class at the University of Queensland. McLennan is brandishing a copy of Ian Hunter’s first solo album. 

1978 – Robert Forster and Grant McLennan form the Go-Betweens. McLennan is the bassist and Forster plays guitar. Their first  single “Lee Remick”/”Karen” is released on their own ‘Able Label’.

1979 – They release second single “People Say”/”Don’t Let Him Come Back”.

1980 – McLennan and Forster move to Glasgow and sign to Postcard Records and hook up with Orange Juice. “I Need Two Heads”/ “Stop Before You Say It” released.

1981 – Band returns to Australia signs with Missing Link Records. Releases “Your Turn, My Turn”/”World Weary” single.

1982 – Band sign to Rough Trade Records and release their debut LP, Send Me a Lullaby. They move to London with drummer Lindy Morrison.

1983 – Before Hollywood released. It was recorded in Eastbourne, England and contained the classic single “Cattle and Cane“. Bass player Robert Vickers joins the band. McLennan switches to guitar.

1984 – Band sign to Sire Records. Spring Hill Fair is recorded in the South of France.

 1985 – Band record Liberty Belle and the Black Diamond Express in London for Elektra Records in the UK. Label closes down before the contract is signed.

 1986 – Band sign to Beggars Banquet and release Liberty Belle. Multi instrumentalist Amanda Brown joins the group. She becomes McLennan’s partner.

 1987 – Tallulah, recorded in London, is released. The band move back to Australia. 

1988 – Record 16 Lovers Lane with Mark Wallis in Sydney, which is released the same year.

1989 – Band tour the world in support of 16 Lovers Lane. December: The Go-Betweens split professionally and romantically. Robert Forster moves to Bavaria, Germany.

1990 – Robert releases his debut solo album, Danger In The Past, produced by Mick Harvey and recorded in Berlin. Robert marries Karin Bäumler.

1991 – February: Robert Forster tours Europe as a solo artist. November: tours USA and Europe with McLennan as a duo.

1993 – Calling from a Country Phone released. It was the first time Forster had recorded in his hometown, Brisbane, since the first Go-Betweens album in 1981.

1994 – Forster releases the covers album I Had A New York Girlfriend. It was recorded in Sydney and he is accompanied by Warren Ellis, Clare Moore and Mick Harvey.

1996 – Releases Warm Nights, produced by Edwyn Collins in London. Forster and McLennan accept an invitation from French magazine Les Inrockuptibles to play in Paris as The Go-Betweens.

1997 – The Go-Betweens, with Adele Pickvance on bass and Ross MacLennan on drums, perform concerts and festivals in the UK and Europe.

1999 – Forster and McLennan tour the world as an acoustic duo in support of  Go-Betweens compilation album released by Beggars Banquet Bella Vista Terrace.

 2000 – The Go-Betweens release their first studio album in twelve years, The Friends of Rachel Worth. The album was recorded in Portland, Oregon with Adele Pickvance on bass and Janet Weiss from Sleater-Kinney on drums. Its release generated acclaim around the world.

2001 – Forster moves back to Brisbane, Australia

2003 – Bright Yellow Bright Orange released. It was recorded in Melbourne, Australia. Drummer Glenn Thompson joins the band permanently, completing their final line-up.

2004 – The band performs a career spanning concert at the Barbican, London accompanied by a string section. The show released on the Live in London, double CD.

2005 – Oceans Apart, recorded with Mark Wallis in London, is released to universal acclaim. It becomes their most commercially successful release. It is awarded an ARIA (Australia’s Grammy). Forster begins writing regular features for The Monthly, an Australian magazine that covers politics, society and the arts. Their first DVD, That Striped Sunlight Sound, is also released. 

2006 – May 6: Grant McLennan dies. Queensland Premier Peter Beattie delivers a eulogy in the Australian Parliament paying tribute to the band’s outstanding artistic legacy. Forster is awarded the Pascall Prize for Critical Writing.

2007 – Sept: Recording begins on The Evangelist with Mark Wallis in South London. It contains some of McLennan’s final compositions. Go-Betweens, Glenn Thompson and Adele Pickvance accompany Forster on the recording.

2008 – The Evangelist is released to rave reviews and Robert embarks on a worldwide tour that includes performing a Velvet Underground set at the Andy Warhol museum in Pittsburgh USA

2010 – Queensland Government names the 1st road bridge built across the Brisbane River in Brisbane for 50 years “The Go-Between Bridge” in honour of  Australia’s finest band.

2015 – The album Songs to Play recorded in Robert’s home town of Brisbane is released, again to astonishing reviews and Robert embarks on another worldwide tour with the young Australian musicians that played on the recordings.

2016 – Robert’s memoir Grant & I: Inside and Outside the Go-Betweens is published by Penguin books in Australia to remarkable reviews cementing Robert’s reputation as an award winning writer.

2017 – The film The Go-Betweens: Right Here starring Robert and directed by Kriv Stenders is released, opening in Australian national cinemas and film festivals around the world.

Grant & I is published by Omnibus books in London and a German translation by Heyne Books in Munich. 

Robert embarks on a Europe wide book tour. The year ends with Grant & I  named as MOJO and UNCUT’s ‘Book of the Year’

2018 – Robert decamps to Berlin to record new material, reuniting with producer Victor Van Vugt who 28 years earlier engineered Robert’s 1st solo album. He is joined in the studio by Karin Baeumler, Scott Bromiley, Earl Havin and Michael Muhlhaus.

2019 – The album Inferno is released worldwide, charting in Germany and the UK and announced as MOJO’s ‘Album of the Month’. Robert will tour worldwide during the nest of the year.

For more information visit www.robertforster.net 

Robert Forster – Inferno (Brisbane in Summer)
JONNY aka Norman Blake & Euros Childs


Really excited and looking forward to the Feb edition of FRETS this Friday 21st. Here are some details. The Strathaven Hotel has a good restaurant and bar food is also good. There is parking at the hotel, though it is expected to be busy as the concert is sold out. People usually queue up before doors open to get a seat near the front, as tickets / seats aren’t numbered they are bagsied on a first come first seated basis. There is a bar next to the concert room, though that bar will close just prior to Norman and Euros taking the stage (there is a main bar through next to the restaurant). As the evening features acoustic performances, a listening audience is greatly appreciated by the artists. Here are the stage times.

7pm – Doors


8pm – KIDD


The concert finishes around 10.30pm, with the main bar remaining open for post match analysis.

Public transport is not great, trains run regularly from Glasgow Central to Hamilton Central and Larkhall. A taxi would be required thereafter, which would cost around £15 to get to the Strathaven Hotel. If taking this mode of transport, a taxi would need to be ordered to collect from the Strathaven Hotel to the train station to catch the last train. There are buses from Hamilton and East Kilbride too. 

Hope you all have a great night, and word up – keep your eyes peeled for another FRETS concert announcement this Monday morning, it is another cracker. It’ll be announced exclusively on this blog at 10am on Monday, along with a link to purchase tickets.

THE BLUEBELLS (Sold Out) – March edition of FRETS


THE BLUEBELLS were formed by songwriter / guitarist Robert Hodgens aka Bobby Bluebell in 1980. When deciding to form a group to start performing his songs, Hodgens remembered two punk musicians from Bothwell (brothers Ken and David McCluskey) he had interviewed for his fanzine, 10 Commandments. David (drums / backing vocals) and Ken (vocals / harmonica) joined Robert and The Bluebells started performing live in and around Glasgow.

The Bluebells were soon involved in the burgeoning scene coalescing around Postcard Records in Glasgow (Orange Juice, Josef K, Go Betweens, Aztec Camera, Jazzateers), and it wasn’t long before The Bluebells were sharing stages throughout the UK with some of the Postcard groups. A single (Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool) was scheduled for release on Postcard, however after appearing on the front page on Melody Maker and in NME / Sounds etc, major record companies started making serious offers to sign the group. The Bluebells appeared on BBC music program the Old Grey Whistle Test, the first unsigned group to do so, and it wasn’t long after this television appearence that the group signed a major record contract with London Records.

The Bluebells were soon in the studio working on songs for their debut album, with Elvis Costello producing. They were invited to open on UK tours for Haircut 100 and Elvis Costello & The Attractions, and started releasing singles to critical acclaim (Forevermore, Cath, Sugar Bridge). However it was their fourth single I’m Falling (co-written by Robert and Ken) that finally resulted in commercial success, chart success, and appearences on Top of the Pops.

The Bluebells released their debut album, Sisters, in 1984 to further commercial chart success, which was continued when their next single, Young At Heart, gave the group their second big hit single. However, when Young At Heart was reissued in 1993, it reached number 1 in the chart for a month, making The Bluebells regular fixtures on Top of the Pops.

FRETS is delighted that Ken, David, and Bobby will be appearing at FRETS, The Bluebells will be performing acoustically in concert at the Strathaven Hotel on Friday 20th March.

Tickets for The Bluebells’ acoustic concert at FRETS on Friday 20th March in the Strathaven Hotel, will only be available from the Eventbrite link below. The link will go live at 7pm on Saturday 8th Feb, from which time tickets can be purchased.


Who We Are

FRETS CREATIVE was formed by experienced Strathaven musician, Douglas MacIntyre, who has worked professionally in the music industry in various capacities for several years. Douglas has several years’ experience in teaching, his ethos is geared towards helping people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds reach their full potential.

Where We Are

FRETS CREATIVE is based in 2 Barn Street Mews in the centre of Strathaven. Why not get in touch and make an appointment to visit our newly-built bespoke studios, we are also hiring rooms that are perfect for use by local organisations and individuals.

What We Do

Check out our Music Lessons section, we provide a learning experience in a modern and inclusive learning environment for all abilities and age groups, perfect for developing your creativity. Your time at FRETS CREATIVE will be as enjoyable as it is productive.


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Get in Touch

Frets Creative
2 Barn Street Mews, Strathaven, ML10


Unless credited all images on this website are by Les Hoggan http://www.leshogganphotography.com

Douglas MacIntyre – photo credit Ross Sinclair

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