A Belfast DJ has shared his memories of the former Bay City Roller Ian Mitchell, who has died in Los Angeles at the age of 62.
Mitchell from Northern Ireland was just 17 when he joined the world famous Scottish pop sensations for a seven-month stint in 1976.
During this time they released the album Dedication and a cover version of the Dusty Springfield song I Only Want To Be With You.
The tartan-clad band had previously dominated the charts with songs such as Saturday Night, Shang-a-Lang, Bye Bye Baby and Summer Love Sensation, selling almost 300 million records worldwide.
When the band played a sold-out gig in Belfast, record store owner and future radio broadcaster Ivan Martin was tasked with saving them from hordes of screaming fans who ripped their van apart.
After supporting The Rollers with his first band from Downpatrick, Mitchell was asked to join by manager Tam Paton.
"It was a bit like somebody playing for Cliftonville getting a call to play on the first team for Manchester United," Martin told the Belfast Telegraph.
"I was given the job of looking after them for the day and getting them to the gig in one piece. They couldn't go out at this stage and were staying in the Secretary of State suite in the Culloden Hotel."
A decidedly un-rock and roll afternoon of horse riding on the Ards Peninsula was arranged, with the stable owner promising secrecy in exchange for gig tickets.
In a ploy to beat the crowds outside the former New Vic Cinema on Great Victoria Street, an empty stretch limo was sent into Belfast as a decoy.
"The place was teeming with young girls, who all chased the limo," recalled Martin.
"I had The Rollers in a Transit van and drove round the back. They jumped out and into the stage door and were away.
"There were crash barriers on the street and the fans just ran through them - flattened them - and were heading our way.
"About half-an-hour later I came out to get something in the van.
"The wing mirrors, wipers and hubcaps had all gone, with the fans taking them as souvenirs."
The hysteria continued inside as soon as the band appeared on stage.
"After the first two notes you couldn't hear anything because the crowd just went absolutely bananas, it was like the early days of The Beatles," Martin explained.
"In the midst of all this hysteria I was astonished to see one of our local MPs in the middle of the audience in his pinstripe suit."
Asked about Mitchell's appeal, he said: "He was hugely photogenic, the camera loved him.
"He slotted into the band perfectly and he was a shrewd choice by Tam Paton to fill the gap left by bassist Alan Longmuir.
"All the young girls went for him.
"The music business is a bit about talent and a lot about marketing.
"And in terms of marketing, Ian Mitchell was an absolute dream for The Bay City Rollers, because he was young, he was good looking, he could play and the fans loved him."
Although the band had "already been to the top of the mountain" by the time Mitchell joined, he said the teen still got to see huge success abroad.
"So Ian enjoyed that aspect of it, and spent a lot of time in the Orient.
"I think, at the time, Japan was the fourth biggest market, so it was a big deal.
"Any time The Rollers were around I would have chatted to him and the rest of the band. They were very ordinary lads who had hit the big time."
As the group's popularity waned Mitchell quit and was replaced by guitarist Pat McGlynn.
A statement on the band's Instagram page said yesterday: "We are deeply saddened by the news of Ian Mitchell's death.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Wendy, their family and friends. Rest In Peace, Ian."
Stuart 'Woody' Wood, who was among the founding members and still performs with the band, wrote on Facebook: "Very sad, sad news about Ian Mitchell.
"We'd like to send our love and condolences to Wendy and all Ian's family and friends... you are in our hearts.
"I have many fond memories of Ian not only in the BCR days but also when we played together in the Eighties with The Passengers...
"Great guys and great days! You will sorely be missed Ian..."