The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #151940   Message #4068325
Posted By: Jack Campin
14-Aug-20 - 06:52 AM
Thread Name: Linen Industry Songs
Subject: RE: Linen Industry Songs
From Tobar an Dualchais on FB:

**Clàr na Seachdain/Recording of the Week**

Steve Byrne is a folklorist, singer, broadcaster and community activist, best known for his work with Scots folksong band Malinky. A graduate of the School of Scottish Studies in Edinburgh, in 2011 he founded a project to safeguard the papers of folklorist Hamish Henderson which are now housed at Edinburgh University Library. With "Local Voices" he runs folklore workshops in schools, he appears regularly on Scots Radio with Frieda Morrison, and worked as singing coach for Netflix's Robert the Bruce epic, "Outlaw King". In 2019, he was named 'Scots Singer of the Year' at the Scots Trad Music Awards. This is what he said about his favourite track from the website:

I worked as a Scots Song cataloguer for Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches for several years and in that time heard hundreds of amazing tracks - so choosing a favourite is quite a task!

That said, the one I have come back to most often is from my hometown, Arbroath. Mabel Skelton sang her own song, "Awa Wi Ma Laddie", about the Brothock Mill, an old flax mill whose imposing red sandstone outline is very much a kenspeckle building in the town.

I have since taken that song back to numerous schools in the Arbroath area, teaching it to several hundred kids in the process. The idea of taking songs from the archives back to the places they were collected is something that fellow cataloguer Chris Wright and I have developed in various projects over the past few years.

I knew a bit about Mabel already from Dr Sheila Douglas's book, 'The Sang's the Thing', but until Tobar digitised the tapes, I had never heard her sing, nor seen a photograph of her. I recently made contact with Mabel's daughter who has since sent me photographs of her mum and sent me a tape she made for the BBC in the 1960s.