TeamRock Radio presenter Billy Rankin has been asked to rejoin his old band Nazareth – but refused, despite enjoying a trial rehearsal.
The veteran Scottish rock outfit – who have been going for 45 years – were thrown into turmoil after frontman Dan McCafferty was forced to retire due to ill health. He'd collapsed twice on stage recently, forcing them to cancel a tour of Canada then a series of bill-topping European festival sets.
Last week McCafferty admitted he wouldn't be back on stage. Earlier this week bassist Pete Agnew, now the only original member, called Billy to invite him to rejoin Naz for a third stint – he'd played guitar with them between 1980 and 1983, then again from 1990 to 1994.
Billy explains: "Pete said, 'We'd like you to replace Dan.' I said, 'No one can replace Dan. Why me?' He told me, 'Well, you can sing, and we've got history.'
"We arranged a rehearsal and blasted through some old hits – and we all had to agree it sounded fucking great. But there was one thing missing: Dan.
"I can't win with the fans, or the bottles I'd have to dodge. We agreed I'd think about it, and I have. Yesterday I called Uncle Pete and said: 'Thanks, but no thanks.'"
Billy appeared on five Naz albums and has three solo records to his name. The former Rock Radio breakfast host returns to TeamRock Radio with The Blues Magazine Show tomorrow night (Saturday) at 6pm.