Category Archives: Scotland

ahab – “Run Me Down”, Live on Brick Lane, East London

Best thing you’ll hear this week.  The band features Callum Adamson, son of the never-forgotten frontman of Big Country, Stuart.  I still can’t believe he’s gone.

I own everything Big Country ever did, and I’ll own everything Cal ever does. “Own”.  Not rip from f’ing youtube.

And Kirsten, too!  Just how it is.



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Filed under Music, Scotland

Night In That Land

A beautiful air written by the late Johnny Cunningham, played wonderfully by the brilliant Scottish fiddler Duncan Chisholm.

I have three of Duncan’s albums ~ Farrar, Canaich, and Affric ~ which make up his ‘Strathglass Trilogy’, a tribute to his Chisholm roots in Scotland.  This song appears on Affric.  All highly recommended; he is one of the world’s great fiddlers.

I also love Duncan’s version of Farewell to Uist, as the Hebrides, including South Uist, was the point of departure for so many of my ancestors before they arrived in Nova Scotia.  The recording of this song is on Farrar.

Just this year, at age 48, I got a fiddle for Christmas from my wife.  The kind of playing seen above is what I would aspire to, but that’s miles and miles away.  Vibrato seems like a far-off country.  Who knows, I may never get near there, but its a musical journey that I’ll enjoy anyway.  It’s the time in my life when I am at least ready to begin the journey; and I suppose it helps that I’ve loved this kind of music and been surrounded by it all my life.

Funny, reading music again after not doing so since I was a kid, really.  I’m working with a young violin/fiddle teacher now, and we’re going through the first Suzuki book, but I’m also bringing in stuff to learn (Skye Boat Song, Star of the County Down, and, now, probably, this one).

Anyway, Duncan — thank you for the inspiration.

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Filed under Music, Scotland

Tobar an Dualchais ~ an online collection of oral histories of Scotland


Here’s an interesting site ~ a collection of oral histories from Scotland, many in Gaelic, of course.

I have bought via iTunes the Alan Lomax collection of Gaelic Songs of Scotland.  Some wonderful stuff there.


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Filed under History, Music, Scotland

R1b-L1335 ~ a Scots modal genetic marker

Just tested positive for the R1b haplogroup genetic marker, or single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), L1335.

Researchers are thinking this one represents the Scots modal.

Recently, I had tested positive for DF13 which was a downstream (i.e. more recent) marker from R1b-L21 (L21 representing, more or less, a good part of the Bronze Age move of peoples from NW Europe to the British Isles).  The modern L21 distribution is here.  With the age of L21 being maybe 3500-4500 years old, the DF13 mutation followed along fairly close after that, so it still represented a fair portion of the L21 group.

Six subclade markers from DF13 (the big six) had been identified recently, and I was negative on all of these, remaining R1b-DF13* until these most recent results.  Now, I am R1b-L1335.  😎

You can check out this pin-map at FTDNA to see how the various R1b groups are shaping up.

Will have to update my Genetic Ancestry page and probably give it a bit of a refresh when I get the chance.

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Filed under Genetics, Scotland

Kinda Harsh


This is kinda harsh, and a bit absurd.

Rangers FC have folded due to debt problems.  The club has been taken over, but are now considered a new club.  Rather than start next season in the 2nd tier of Scottish football, they are now starting over in the 4th tier!  The Old Firm is broken.  Either Rangers or Celtic have won the SPL since 1985; I suppose Celtic could win it for the next three seasons or so; even if Rangers get promoted each year, the earliest they can return to Premier League play would be 2015/16.

Average attendance in the Scottish 4th tier (3rd Division) last year was 475 (four-hundred seventy-five) while the attendance at Glasgow’s Ibrox was over 45,000.  Fun.  😎

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July 27, 2012 · 10:36 am