When Marti Pellow made his acting debut as himself in Emmerdale

21 January 2022, 14:34

Marti Pellow on meeting his heroes Elton John and Eric Clapton

By Tom Eames

Soaps are no stranger to a celebrity cameo or two, and we've recalled one of our favourites from yesteryear.

In the latest Famous Firsts podcast episode, host Jenni Falconer reminded guest Marti Pellow about his appearance in ITV's Emmerdale back in December 2001.

At the time, former Wet Wet Wet singer Marti was embarking on his solo career, and he hadn't done much acting, but why not take a trip to the Woolpack, eh?

In the episode, Marti - playing himself - was roped into serenade Kathy (Malandra Burrows) with 'Close to You' before she emigrated to Australia. Not a bad leaving present!

Watch the episode clips below:

Marti Pellow - Close To You - Emmerdale

Speaking about his appearance on the soap, Marti told Jenni: "A friend, Lucian, a friend of my record company at the time, he was working there, he said, 'Marti, Emmerdale have asked if you’ll do this wee thing where you come on and you sing a wee song' and I’m like 'What?'. Fear, fear.

"I’m like, 'That’s bizarre'. He said, 'Listen, it’ll be a bit of fun. Just go in there, it’ll be great.' So I went and everyone was lovely.

"I remember on the day everybody being really, really lovely and I had to sing a bit of ‘Close to You’ which was my first solo single. And I was very chuffed with myself because at one point I was walking backwards and taking off my coat and speaking, so I was multi-tasking. So that was good for me."

Marti Pellow on fulfilling his mum's dreams

It obviously sparked the acting bug for Marti, as not long after this he ended up doing stints on the West End and Broadway, in musicals like Chicago.

In Famous Firsts, Jenni Falconer chats to pop music legends to hear the stories behind their firsts: first gigs, first record deals, first TV appearances and much more.

Previous episodes have featured Ed Sheeran, Michael Bolton and Westlife among many others, with future guests including Tony Hadley and Billy Ocean.

Listen & subscribe: Global Player | Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify

Marti Pellow heads out on his Greatest Hits UK and Ireland tour in 2022 in April. Ticket details can be found here.