The long distance love affair between Paul Carrack and his Sheffield fans continues unabated, writes Martin Dawes.
Once a year they meet at a packed City Hall and he sings his heart out while they cheer and stomp like mad.
After all this time – some 40 years – both might be forgiven for going through the motions of a long romance. But he doesn’t let up and neither do they.
Last Sunday he gave them quite a few new tunes from his latest album, Rain or Shine, and it could be that Life’s Too Short and All That Matters To Me will become standards in his stage act. “Indulge me,” he said, introducing another new song and they did.
But he knows what turns them on the most so he also sang the old ones: such as Tempted, Eyes of Blue and Over My Shoulder and tunes which triggered their memories of younger days.
You Don’t Know Me, he sang, echoing Ray Charles (also on the album) but they do.
As the accolades pile up Paul Carrack has become one of Britain’s musical national treasures. Sunday’s audience has known that for some time.