Bonnie Jeannie o'Bethelnie is also known as Glenlogie. The words of this version are a mixture of the version sung by John Strachan on the record in the Folk Songs of Britain series, Vol 5 (12T161) and that in Greig's Folk-Song of the North-East. The guitar is tuned DAAEAE.
Bonnie Lass Amang the Heather — This comes more or less from the singing of Alex McShannon of Cambelltown via Gordon MacAuley, who is well known to floor sweepers in pubs all over the world.
Crooked Jack — Written by Dominic Behan, this is very selfexplicit. I learned it from Al O'Donnell, a personal hero of mine.
The Recruited Collier — I felt it was about time that this was resurrected — it's always been one of my favourite songs. I learned it years ago from the singing of Kathy Bainbridge, a fine singer from Tyneside. The tune is by A. L. Lloyd who first collected the song from a miner, Jim Huxtable of Workington,
The Pound a Week Rise was written by Ed Pickford and needs little explanation. What price productivity deals?
My Donald — A song written by Owen Hand emphasising the fact that most of our luxuries are obtained at the expense of somebody else's hard and frequently dangerous work.
Willie o' Winsbury — I couldn't have imagined myself singing this a few years back, but I found a couple of verses for the middle which change the whole emphasis of the song. I first heard it sung by Anne Briggs to a different tune, but don't remember where I got this tune. The guitar is tuned DADGAD and the accompaniment is from an idea my wife Dorris gave me.
Such a Parcel o' Rogues in a Nation — Although I couldn't really be called a nationalist, like all Scots I'm very aware of the fact that Scotland has had a separate history and culture and can appreciate the feelings of whoever wrote this song. (Not Robert Burns, though it is sometimes credited to him.) In the wake of the abortive Jacobite risings, the government came up with a “final solution” type of policy calculated to deal with the Scots for ever, by using the politics of greed. That it worked is all too obvious.
Gillie Mor — I have gone on record elsewhere as saying I consider Hamish Henderson one of the greatest Scots poets and songwriters. This song was written by Hamish as a message of solidarity from the blacksmiths of Leith (my home) to the blacksmiths of Kiev in the Soviet Union, and was sent as such by them. Gillie Mor is Gaelic and means, literally, the big lad. The guitar tuning used here is DAAEAE and the tune Hamish wrote the song to is normally called Whistle ower the lave o't.