Rangers’ top spot bid for Heckmondwike songwriter’s Orbison hit

Sammy King, whose song 'Penny Arcade' is bieng used by Glasgow Rangers to raise money for charity. (d13041141)
Sammy King, whose song 'Penny Arcade' is bieng used by Glasgow Rangers to raise money for charity. (d13041141)

IT was one of Roy Orbison’s biggest hits during the 1960s.

And now Penny Arcade, by Heckmondwike songwriter Sammy King, could hit the charts once again thanks to a football campaign.

Glasgow Rangers fans have sung it in the stands for many years and wanted to use it to raise cash for the Erskine Hospital, for former servicemen and women.

Already more than 18,000 people have joined a Facebook campaign to get the song to number one and raise cash for the hospital.

Sammy, 70, said: “Fans used to play the Roy Orbison record and sing along at matches. Recently one of them found out that I had written it so they got in touch with me. Every year they download a particular song from iTunes and all the proceeds go to the Erskine Hospital.

“This year they have decided to do Penny Arcade. They are over the moon and now I’m a legend in Glasgow! ”

In a twist to the tale, Sammy is a Roman Catholic and the Rangers are a Protestant team with a big rivalry with Catholic team Glasgow Celtic. Sammy said he told the fans he was Catholic but they said it was the football that mattered.

And now he is hoping fans of his own team, Huddersfield Town, will get on board.

Sammy said Roy Orbison made the song a hit after he played it to the star at Batley Variety Club in 1968.

He said: “His son later told me he had always seen some magic in it.”

Profits from Sammy’s own version, on iTunes from Monday to Saturday, go to the hospital. Clock on the link to the top right of the story for more.