Liam Rudden: TV concert coverage is Twitter’s Pet hate

Pet Shop Boys. Picture: John Wright
Pet Shop Boys. Picture: John Wright
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BRAVED is the word. Last week, I braved the crowds, the unpredictable weather and the drunken masses to attend Edinburgh’s Hogmanay for the first time in two decades.

The attraction? A greatest hits set from Concert In The Gardens headliners the Pet Shop Boys, a double-act that has now sold more than 50 million records worldwide.

With spot-on sound, an intricate laser light show, dancers and an hour and a half of hits, the gig was the ideal way to celebrate the 21st birthday of the biggest Hogmanay party in the world. Even the weather remained mild for the duration of the event.

I say biggest Hogmanay party deliberately, because, let’s be honest, there are bigger New Year’s Eve parties these days. Just look at New York, where Times Square saw in excess of one million people welcome in 2014.

Not that you would be able to tell from the BBC’s coverage that Edinburgh’s Hogmanay was anything more than a firework display.

The poor old Pet Shop Boys didn’t even get a mention, let alone feature in their coverage, which instead relied on some pre-recorded clips and a ropey performance from Deacon Blue and all the usual suspects - will no one else work on Hogmanay?

I wasn’t the only one on Twitter asking why the Beeb had eschewed the Boys who, according to the Guinness Book of Records, are the most successful duo in UK music history.

Reportedly at breakfast the next morning, even Neil Tennant asked why there had been no coverage. The answer, I’m told, is simple: the BBC decided not to. Not an editorial decision, they just decided not to. In which case you have to wonder whether the licence fees used to set up the outside broadcast for their resident newsreader to do the odd Princes Street link, was really worth it.

A waste? You could say it’s a sin.