Raymond Mearns

Raymond Mearns

Raymond Mearns, regular Thursday-night compere at the Stand in Glasgow, has been performing across Scotland, and beyond, for more than a decade, since starting his career in Glasgow’s infamous Comedy Cellar, at the time hosted by Ed Byrne.

He is a regular contributor to Radio Scotland's Fred MacAulay Show; has adopted a number of guises on BBC One's Live Floor Show in 2002-3 and is part of the improvisation and sketch show Dance Monkey Boy Dance.

Mearns is also an actor having appeared in a number of films and TV shows, including Ken Loach’s Ae Fond Kiss in 2004, in which he played Big Roddie.

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Will everybody love Raymond?

Stand-up Mearns lands his own radio series

Scottish comic Raymond Mearns has landed his own radio series.

Planet Mearns, a mix of stand-up, sketches and music, will air a festive special on Christmas Day on BBC Radio Scotland, with four more episodes scheduled for 2015.

The commission follows a successful pilot in March, with the Christmas show recording at Glasgow's Oran Mor venue tomorrow night.

The stand-up will be joined by his former Limmy's Show co-star Debbie Anderson (formerly Welsh), musician Allen Chalmers, who performed with Mearns in the Dance Monkey Boy Dance comedy troupe, and River City actor Robin Laing.

The series of 30-minute shows, airing at lunchtime, will be produced by Gus Beattie for The Comedy Unit.

'This one's purely about Christmas and New Year' says Mearns of the imminent recording. 'Me talking about Christmas when I was a kid, when I stopped believing in Santa, all the cool toys in my day, then growing up and buying toys for my own kids. Things like secret Santa and Christmas songs'.

The pilot examined relationships, with the comic reflecting on his return to dating after the breakup of his marriage. Forthcoming episodes will focus on health, aspirations, finance and lifestyle.

'It's my view of the world' said Mearns. 'I've got tonnes of stuff written, tonnes of sketches, based around stand-up observations that I've done. But the stand-up elements will be fresh, re-written and re-done.’

The pilot 'was phenomenal. I had every intention of building a really nice, tight, warm vibe in the room and we did that'.

At 47, Mearns, who has supported musician Pete Doherty on tour and appeared in the BBC Scotland sitcoms Rab C Nesbitt and Legit, as well as two Ken Loach films, described landing his own vehicle as 'amazing'.

A regular headliner and compere throughout Scotland, he said 'I didnae think [commissioners were] remotely interested in me because everything seems aimed at younger people.

'But they're bringing back Still Game, they brought back Rab C Nesbitt. And Mrs Brown's Boys is bigger than the Rolling Stones. It seems clear that we're all living longer and there's an enormous demographic there to serve, anybody between 30 to 70'.

And he added that he's in 'exploratory chats' about adapting the show for television, 'though that's at early stages'.

-by Jay Richardson

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Published: 2 Dec 2014

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