(In other words – is it worth your while subscribing?)

Is this a new beginning?

Celticunderground.net and the free to air podcast are not going away, we just want to do something a little different and different costs and so we need a subscription for that but the general larking around on the pod and Saint Anthony pics and our social media presence will continue, unabashed. But things change – we launched the site in 2006 and followed shortly with the podcast but that was 18 years ago and so whilst we’re not walking away from the free website and podcast (we don’t do walking away!) there’s loads of fan media sites and pods now out there covering Celtic. As the world’s original fan football podcast, we wanted to do something different.

1. Why this, why now

You might have noticed that the volume of podcasts and articles on the site have been slowly dwindling – sometimes life can get in the way. Also, sometimes doing the same thing for 18 years can start to diminish the enthusiasm and so we needed a spark and that spark has come from the arrival of Andrew H Smith.

A journalist of excellent repute, Andrew has spent over 30 years at the peak of the industry in Scotland and when the opportunity arose to work with him we wanted to use his skills and experience to deliver something different for the listeners and readers.

2. Substack – more than a blog or podcast or twitter

Older readers may recall the early internet days before podcasts, blogs and social media when the fan media interaction was more like community message boards. Substack sells itself as an online platform that allows journalists, writers, and other content creators to publish newsletters, videos and podcasts and circulate to their readers and listeners in a more interactive way. Substack’s main function is connecting the creator and their audience combining the features of a blog and email newsletter. Authors can use the platform for personal writing or news, and send digital newsletters directly to a reader’s inbox. There are also tools for podcasts and group chat broadcasts. It sounded right up our street!

3. So who is going to be on this Substack thingy?

Andrew H Smith – Chief Writer and podcaster @Andrewsmit75299

Andrew started his journalistic career at The Celtic View over 30 years ago, shortly before the Fergus McCann revolution – something he discusses at length in two of our forthcoming podcasts. After leaving The View he progressed on a 30-year career in the written press with the Scotland on Sunday and then the Scotsman, focussing on the football of our dear green city and specifically Celtic and the Rangers.

With more than 30 years experience in Scottish sports journalism, Andrew has covered everything from domestic football to international events and European cup finals. He has been shortlisted for UK awards and has been a vociferous campaigner against racism and sectarianism in Scottish football.

Eddie Pearson – Rumour Mill and podcaster (@celticrumours)

Eddie Pearson featured in the first ever eleven for Celtic, but little is fully known about this player.  Born on 16th March 1863 in Holytown (Lanarkshire), he was to become a right-back for Carfin Shamrock.  Eddie Pearson had the honour to play for Celtic in the club’s inaugural match, a 5-2 friendly win over Rangers, a major note in retrospect. However, he never played for Celtic in another match, so he never played in any competition matches with Celtic….but this isn’t our Eddie!

Our Eddie Pearson was the founding father of The Celtic Underground.  In a previous guise who could be found waxing lyrically about made up transfer gossip on the Etims Rumour Mill before setting up The Celtic Underground.  The original host of the podcast, life got a got in the way and he handed the baton over to Harry Brady. 

Harry Brady – General ramblings and podcaster (@HarrybradyCU)

Harry Brady had a season book in the main stand at decades.  A bit like Breakfast at Bernies, Harry was long gone but in the days of season books in the main stand only, his ticket was passed from pillar to post as and new Harry’s popped up as regularly as new James Bonds.

Our version of Harry Brady is known to his friends as Brian Gilmour and has been on the podcast almost since the beginning and hosting it for a decade.  Occasionally Harry’s opinions may be at odds with the perceived position of the online fans, but unlike some of the Johnny-come-lately fan podcasters Harry says what he thinks – not what he thinks people want to hear.

4. Please subscribe.

We’ve spent considerable time and effort generating the content for our substack and that takes time and money. We believe in Andrew H Smith we will be providing people with a quality and standard of writing not found anywhere else on the Celtic internet. Allied to the ramblings of a couple of Celtic Da’s we’re hoping it’s something worth spending a couple of bob on once a month.

There’s two types of subscription over on substack and both will get fresh new content emailed directly to their inbox or available on the Substack app – it’s just that one will be premium and paid for and one is free. We hope that, after 18 years of free listening, you might think £3.50 a month is worth it…and even better when you consider that it’s not being back dated! (also – that’s the minimum substance subscription fee.)