I am so pleased to know someone else is a fan of Melanie's music; such a distinctive voice (Andrew Hook
, 17 March). My LP, along with all our others, has been passed to our son who has the means to play them; I depend on Spotify now to revisit my past.
I used to have a box of 78s also but these were passed on to a friend who lives in the States, whose husband had bought a 1940's Wurlitzer which only played 78s. As she was a relative of Calum Kennedy, she wanted some of his records but after three fruitless days searching in Edinburgh junk shops, she asked me if I could think of anywhere she might find them. My reply was which ones do you want? She got all the Scottish ones she wanted (including George Elrick's Aikey Brae
) on condition I could come to New York and hear them being played. When I did get there, the juke box wasn't working.
A few years ago, I came across some 16rpm single sided records, including Harry Lauder's best known recordings, which had not sold in a scout sale; I paid £1 for them. They took up space for about 10 years until I put them back into a charity sale.
The only record I now possess is a 45rpm, Give Peace a Chance
, by the Plastic Ono Band, which was part of a bundle of stuff John Lennon sent to the hospital in Golspie after he, Yoko and Julian spent a week there following a crash on the North Coast in 1969. My mother was a nurse there and received things like sheet music with scribbles and notes, microphones and other assorted music-related items – he must have had a clear out in Abbey Road. Unfortunately, my mother over the years cleared out everything except the 45, not appreciating the value these things would have now.
We have surely reached a new low in public life, when the most interesting feature of a new political party is a widespread inability to say its name correctly. Some commentators are but a short step away from calling it Alibaba, but with around 4,000 new members' names already spouted from the magic lamp – oops sorry, that was Aladdin – we may yet enjoy a resurgence in a Gaelic version of Oriental folk tales. Heaven knows, snake charmers in (tartan?) loin cloths would be a welcome relief after months of dreary laments from Holyrood. Better than any manifesto from a 'political force' which, unaccountably, has attracted women to sign up to its wrecking ball tactics.
Time for the voters to swing a few wrecking balls of their own? Should we paint ourselves in woad and practice a bit of Gaelic as we march into the polling booths? Whatever happens on 6 May and thereafter, I will happily return to my own wee foetid swamp.
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