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Tony Horne - The people's voice.

Byline: By Tony Horne

We like to have a guest on our radio show once a week as invariably they are good value, keep the show fresh, and people do like a bit of celebrity.

Before Christmas the guest list looks like this: Ricky Gervais (yes), Noddy Holder (probable), Chris Martin from Coldplay (maybe), Helen and Tim from Soccer am, Pogues, ( er, that fell through), Alan Shearer, (if he breaks the record he will come on), Elvis, (we're still waiting for his people to get back to us).

Today the A-List guest list reached new heights. Forget all those big names, today was Chico time.

I succumbed to the hype and gave precious airtime to a natural-born entertainer if not natural-born singer.

I told him he was a Latino Shaky Stevens; he told me it was Chico time.

I asked him who would win the X Factor? He told me it was Chico time.

I asked him if he would rather sleep with Louis or Sharon, he told me ...

Well anyway, I never allow such product placement on our show, and as I write this on my Compaq laptop, I am asking myself have I joined the Chico bandwagon?

It was a good interview, oddly, beyond the hype. I am on a superior intellectual plane to him but he has more self belief!

He told me categorically that the person going home on Saturday night from the X Factor this weekend is ... `we'll take a break' ... no, just joking ... either Andy or Brenda.

So well done for narrowing it down to two out of four!

Andy, he claimed was his best mate, and despite his murdering of Easy Lover last week, remains the best singer, even if it looks like he can only do Nat King Cole.

We did have serious words, however, when I told him that I had reported him to Health and Safety for throwing water on the X Factor stage when surrounded by live equipment.

Chico believes his own hype. He announced the 2006 Chico album on our show. He even went as far as to endorse our fake campaign to rename the Tyne Bridge as the `Chico Tyne Bridge'. Oh dear!

Please tell me quickly if I ever get this lost in showbiz. He is a legend obviously but so is Frank Bough, and I don't see him getting much work.

I told Chico straight ... Chico time is over.

Next week, it is Ricky Gervais time - thank goodness!
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Dec 9, 2005
Words:413
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