Tony Christie: Live At the V Festival

Tony Christie

review by Emily Webb

The first I ever heard of Tony Christie was when Peter Kay mimed to (Is This The Way To) Amarillo. Such a cheerful little song that, sadly, has been hijacked by drunken chavs all over the country...

Peter Kay created a music video, along with Christie and various other famous faces for Amarillo, which raised money for Comic Relief 2005. (Apparently, Kay's mum is a huge Tony Christie fan.) This became the biggest selling single of 2005.

Obviously, this is the reason Christie got the gig at the V Festival performing this hit and more, including Avenues And Alleyways and a Beatles' medley. I was not familiar with the music performed, besides Amarillo and the Beatles' medley, so I just took the performance at face value. Christie is a feel good performer, albeit of the vintage kind.

Christie is a great showman and it was truly enjoyable to watch an artist who is enjoying a career renaissance and realises it (a bit like seeing how grateful Take That were for their second chance, which turned into their recent best-selling concert tour).

When I was watching this I kept thinking of Peter Kay and his series Phoenix Nights, which always makes me laugh out loud. Kay first used Amarillo in this series when the characters Max and Paddy tried to encourage a group of Muslims, on their way to prayer, into a sing-along to the song. I bet Tony Christie is very grateful to Kay (and Kay's mother) for his revived profile.

Extras on the DVD include an exclusive karaoke sing-along for Amarillo, and a photo gallery: Tony Through The Years.