This week, with Rangers heading out for the Florida cup in Orlando, I have decided to mix up a touch.

I spoke with David Edgar, former spokesman of the Rangers trust, and for the last seven years voice of Heart & Hand.

Heart & Hand’s flagship shows on a Monday & Friday, attract audiences of well over 100,000, and can also boast to hold the most downloaded podcast episode ever in Scotland, following a recent interview with ex-Rangers player Kevin Thomson.

Recently Heart & Hand evolved to a new subscription platform, one that provides daily updates and a varying mix of content, so you can go to @rangersnewsuk for your articles, and Heart & Hand for breaking news and everything else.

We have covered many topics from the evolution of the podcast, to what’s coming up next and a host of other topics, in a four-part special.

Today in part 2, we cover the start of the subscription platform and what the show sets out to achieve in the long run. If you missed the first part please head over to @rangersnewsuk or @steven_harrigan where you can find it.

SH: In November Heart & Hand launched a new subscription platform, providing a wide range of shows from daily updates to shows like the Advocaat years, has the new subscription service exceeded even your expectations ?.

DE: Oh ye I mean it blew me away it really did, well I’ll tell you the figures I expected, after the launch which was November the 26th.

My hope was to get 100 by Christmas and 300 in the first three months, maybe 500 after 6 months and now just under a month we are sitting with almost 1600 people and that is incredible to me because its not really a model that’s been used in Scottish football, it’s not really a model that I knew if it would work or not I just thought we’ll give this a try and again I was quite prepared for it to fail.

You know, I hoped it wouldn’t but if it didn’t then we tried it which is always my approach to the stuff, give it a go. If it works it works and I think that is always what people have said.

You’re putting in so much content and incidentally for any one reason we don’t expect you to listen to it all ok, if you subscribe and you like three shows a month I think if you’re paying the £2 it’s probably worth that. When you look at the pricing structure it is very much based on what was £1.74, one of the reasons we did dollars was that they add tax to it so I wanted to make sure it was still under the price we would advertise.

I do feel awkward about it and there’s no getting away from it you can dress it up and say well you know I’m putting in all these hours and it’s all true but at the end of the day I still feel a bit strange saying it and I can’t help that.

In the case of the pricing the idea was if you get 4 shoes a month and I hope you would get a lot more than that but if you get 4 shows a month that you like its 50p a show for 2 hours entertainment you’ll probably not grudge that,

Now so far I don’t think that’s the case, for example our most popular show is the Advocaat years but the next popular show is our daily update. So clearly people are listening to a mix they’re not just listening to the Advocaat years and the head to heads, so if you’re listening to the daily show every day then you’re certainly getting value for money.

That being said, I never ever want anyone to think I subscribe to that and it’s a complete waste of money that would be a failure on my part then because I’ve not delivered something that they thought they were getting and that would be entirely down to me, we always air on the side of more content. I guess what I will promise you that never will we put something out that we don’t like see if I wouldn’t listen to it then won’t go out 100% that’s one of the rules of the subscription service. It might mean sometimes there are valid shows I might not go for just because not interested in them and I’ll always say go off and do that on your own, set that up I’ll help you it’s just not anything that I want on this network but that’s always the guiding principle.

SH: What makes the subscription service so good in my opinion is the range of content it offers, along the fact you can download and listen at you leisure. Along with the fact as Rangers fans we feel a huge disconnect with mainstream media, me personally I download podcasts from NFL to ones about business rather than listen to the radio.

DE: That was why I did it, I’m exactly like you I like a few American podcasts, I like NBA and like pro wrestling and I listen to loads of other podcasts.

When I was working you know my job a lot of it involved you know web coding and stuff which is a pretty singular thing and at times can be quite dull and repetitive, we used to say I’m going to plug in for two hours and it meant we’re going to be doing some coding that will be fairly boring, so I’m going to put my headphones in and I would listen to podcasts so I felt there was a need for that content.

Also the key is that Rangers fans are excluded from mainstream media in this country, deliberately.

When I was growing up in the 90’s I listened to Scotsport every Monday, BBC Sportsound, but I’ve never been a Clyde. guy.

I must admit anything to do with BBC Scotland in the 90’s Gordon Smith, Bob Crampsy Alex Cameron Willie Miller, you know those type of guys and it was a good show and I enjoyed it and there was plenty there for Rangers fans and that’s been taken away from people.

When I was in the supporters trust I railed against the media. Possibly because of the naive belief that possibly if we just pointed out to them that they were being unfair maybe they would see our side and maybe they would then start to change it and then after a while of doing that and my chaotic tilting at windmills, after a while I realised no they do know they know exactly what they’re doing so what can you do, you can’t change that. Especially with the written media the written media are worse than any kind.

SH: I always felt that the BBC was a good show probably decent enough until we got demoted and then this started. It was still decent enough to listen to on a Saturday on the way back from the game and since that time its just plummeted.

DE: From there its really then just got, they were faced with the choice of listening to people who don’t like them and who make it clear they don’t like them so that’s not particularly great for your self-esteem or not listening at all and I’ve been in exactly that position Steven where I’ve been coming back from the game with my dad and he’s out rigging Beatles CD’s from the car, I put them on because we’re not going to listen to radio and that’s a shame.

SH: You’re kind of restricted up here because you can’t even put on Talk Sport or anything because it doesn’t give you the Scottish football scores or a reporter at Rangers games they’re not interested.

DE: To be perfectly blatant I don’t give a fuck about any other Scottish club, I really don’t I’m not going to lie about it right, if I watch football for pleasure it tends not to be the Scottish league shall we say so I don’t care about Aberdeen have done this or Hibs have done this does it affect Rangers right no, I’m good so what I do like to talk about constantly is Rangers again it just goes back to I’m just recording conversations I have anyway and it’s the same with all you guys and I know this that everybody just talks about Rangers non stop you know text, tweets, conversations follow it’s what we do we talk about Rangers constantly so I figured lets try and build some of that mind for people and give them the option.

Importantly for me was to keep the two free ones (flagship shows) because I didn’t want to force people to into the subscription service from a business point of view the first thing they’ll tell you is you need to push people into that and what I decided was no I’m not going to do that because these people have been the ones that gave us the start we would not be able to do this if it wasn’t for them so I’m not going to turn round and slap them in the face now what I’m going to do is and I really do believe this is I still put as much and if not more effort in the last few weeks into the main flagship shows, they haven’t shortened them, they haven’t shortened, I think, in quality yours till get all the stuff on that, that you would expect we don’t do the flagship shows to tailor it just for subscribers and exclude all the other people and it’s the case of saying to people if you’re happy with two shows a week that’s fantastic and thank you very much for continuing to listen to us and I really appreciate it and they will be here for you as long as you want them and then if they decide well I do like that and on top of that I would like more content them we’ll provide it but not at the expense of the people who us to the stand in the first place.

SH: Also you’re getting them in the door so to speak with the free flagship shows, and if they are really interested or really enticed they eventually will come over.

DE: Yes, but I get that there are people who’ll go that’s two hours a week that’s plenty and I absolutely understand that and I’m not going to in any way take that away because of you know financially I want to make money off you. That’s not what it’s about, if we’ve provided two hours entertainment to you all week an hour back on the flagship show for seven years and you’ve loyally stuck with us for seven years then there’s no danger that I’m going to come round and say well you’re not getting that anymore because that is something that I really don’t want to do and I’ve seen other podcasts that have been reasonably successful but that have done that or have started putting their best content onto their subscription podcast onto their subscription service and we’re not doing that.

Don’t get me wrong I think for instance the Advocat years s one of the best things we’ve ever done I really do but it’s not the same show it’s not the same structure its additional for the subscription service and that’s what it’s about it was rather than taking away from the main podcast it was about building up the subscriptions service so it shouldn’t be that for one to be good the other has to suffer there is room for both of them to maintain and I promise for anyone reading this who is well I listen to two shows I’ve got a new baby I don’t have time to listen to 10 shows or 20 shows a week I absolutely understand that and there is no way we will ever put you in that position. People like the flagship shows that’s wonderful they will always be there.

SH: You say you don’t plan for the future but do you ever see or envisage anything that you would expand it into documentary making ?, or does that involve having to pay for the rights to Rangers games and stuff like that, does that create issues ?.

I think maybe it would be more a case of I don’t like filmmaking. I’ve done it and I don’t enjoy it. I like the nature of podcasts. Filmmaking is an awful lot of sitting about, getting set up whereas I just like to show up do my thing and fuck off.

I’ve never been, I’m not a patient guy I have the attention span of a chair I’m not a great one for being able so I’d happily if the finances allow I’d happily fund people to do it and I’m more than happy to do that and if it was a case we could afford as you say licenced clips or whatever or pay for interviews and somebody came to me and said look David I’m a really good filmmaker I’d be more than happy to do it. In my previous job as I worked as a content producer I had to do video and I don’t enjoy it, the editing process is a pain in the arse you need to do umpteen takes do a long ways for cut always as we call them all that kind of stuff it’s not really my bag much in the same way incidentally that I don’t do a lot of written anymore it was almost like I’d been an amateur writer my whole life and I wrote a music blog that was quite successful.

On the back of that I decided to write my book in 2010 and see the day after it and I’m not kidding I was like I’m done writing, see once I’ve done something then I like to move on so then writing is something I don’t particularly do anymore.

I write a column every month for WATP magazine and I’ll not fool you it’s murder getting it out of me. David must hate me he’d be like how you getting on with that article oh sorry I’ll need to sit down and write that. Filmmaking would be like that for me it’s just not something I enjoy. In terms of would I branching into other areas of contents I would if people come to us and have the skills and want to do it but I don’t think us as a group would but we have the freedom to do that n the platform and we have the freedom to do video, we do some video but it will be mostly gorilla style, so I’m not dead set against it.

SH: What is your overall vision for the platform, is it like the one this very article appears in to create your own narrative and have it by the fans for the fans ?.

DE: When we started off people kind of knew in football terms who I was some people not everyone, some people enough gave us a try and we started off getting 10,000 downloads a week which is massive for a started especially back then when it was a much smaller market so I know how difficult it is to launch something from scratch and we wanted to be able to do with the platform was if people come to us we have an idea or me and my mates are really good at this blab la and we can give them a guaranteed audience straight away and my sort of vision is that people come to us and say I really want to do this but I don’t know how to record it. Great well I can do this that’s a doddle I an edit it I’ll happily produce the show for you but you do it it’s your show.

What I want is to come in be introduced to an audience so people know them and then after a few months if it’s taken off come in and go thank you David I’m ready to go off and get this up on iTunes myself. I’ll shake their hand, thanks very much and I’ll wish them luck and all the best because then if that happens and it happens regularly in two or three years Rangers fans won’t have to go to the mainstream media Rangers fans will have this ….views from the club and their analysis and history from the club.

The more of that the better, and people will say well aren’t you just creating your own competition well yes I am but equally we have an audience and we’ll keep it if we’re good and if we’re not good it won’t matter who else is out there so its down to us so there’s that and secondly I can’t imagine how fucking unbearable I’m going to be in two or three years if there are 10 shows that started on my network it’s kind of win-win. If we did have a sort of airy-fairy dream then that would be what it would be if we could start and help people get going. I know its hard to get going and people tend think I’ll get round to it so if we can help and we can then we’ll do it and as I say maybe in a couple of years time we won’t have to Rangers fans won’t have to rely on mainstream media they don’t have to pick up a paper.

Don’t listen to shows that hate you, you can have the choice of six or seven different shows that you can go and listen to and if we can play a small part in that then that would be making everything that we had done up to that point worth it.

The overall dream of the platform and we touched on this earlier and we wanted this to be the alternative media of Rangers fans.

That’s it for part 2. Please join in tomorrow where we will divulge further into upcoming shows, and how the hugely successful live shows came about.