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A recontextualisation of Woody Guthrie’s ‘Deportee (Plane Wreck at Los Gatos)’ inspired by the events which took place on 13th May when the UK Home Office sent a dawn raid to Kenmure Street on the Southside of Glasgow to deport two asylum seekers, Sumit Sehdev and Lakhvir Singh, on the last day of Eid. Hundreds of people took to the street for eight hours to surround the van that the men were detained in, and human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar was present to support the men. They were finally released by the UK Home Office van. We vehemently oppose the hostile immigration policy of the United Kingdom.

lyrics

The city is quiet, morning is breaking
The people are making their daily commute
Down in the southside, they’ve spied a big white van
The government say they’re to end a dispute

Over two men who settled and thrived in this nation
Who made it their home and who worked all their lives
Torn from their homes on the holiest day
And judged by the press through their bigoted eyes

The suits down in Whitehall make justifications
For tearing a family apart in the street
You won’t have a name when you ride the big airplane
And all they will call you will be deportees.

But the people of Glasgow they took to the streets
Defending their neighbours, raided at dawn
For eight hours they sat there, chanting and singing
Your home is in Glasgow, you’re where you belong

Why should we continue to stay in this Union
A Union that doesn’t treat us with respect
We should carve our own path and set our own rules
And value the people we ought to protect

Think of that woman who makes the decisions
Who wears her posh suit, and who smirks at the press
She thinks “taking back control” means deporting our people
Instead of the issues she ought to address

No one is illegal, no matter where they come from
We’re still toiling through Westminster’s lies
The system is broken but we see a way out
It’s time now for Scotland to stand up and rise

The suits down in Whitehall make justifications
For tearing a family apart in the street
You won’t have a name when you ride the big airplane
And all they will call you will be deportees.

Is this the best way we can grow our own nation
How can we move forward if we can’t agree
And they shouldn’t be sent to ride the big airplane
When all they will call you will be deportees.

Braw Sailin on The Sea is part of a project called Memory of Water. Memory of Water is a two year Creative Europe funded project consisting of six European artists exploring post-industrial cultural heritage on waterfronts, in the context of urban planning and community development. The following film is a collaboration between Fable Vision who co-ordinated the project, STAGE (Scottish Talent Across Generations Events) and the Greek memory of water artist Ira Brami the film is called “Awakening The River” Watch full video here: https://youtu.be/0HVVHFnb57E

Iona Fyfe: vocals Graham Rorie: mandolin Jack McRobbie: guitar

 The Alabama is the first single from HAV’s forthcoming Album ‘Haar. The song tells the story of a fishing boat disaster out of the port of Buckie (Moray, Scotland) close to where Alex Ross (the song’s composer) and Iona Fyfe both grew up. Narrated by the sweetheart of one of the men lost in the tragedy, The Alabama is a personal meditation on the perilous risks that fisherman took and still take today.

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Join Iona Fyfe and Christy Scott as they discuss their purpose as Scots Sangsters, the stories they want to tell, the challenges they’ve face singing and writing in Scots and plans for breaking the Scots language out of the folk genre. 

Iona and Christy discuss three songs they have written or translated into Scots. PDF downloads of the songs are available below to look at whilst listening.  

If you hear Scots being sung, it’s most likely a folksong. However, other minority languages don’t seem to be intrinsically tied to the folk genre. Artists have recorded Gaelic, Irish Gaelic and Welsh language songs in genres such as pop, indie, funk, rock and country, but the Scots Language has often been confined to folk music.  

With the mentorship of Christy Scott, a songwriter and Scots Singer from Buckie, Iona has translated a Taylor Swift song into Scots and has written her own original pop song in Scots, with the aim of showcasing Scots as a living breathing language that can be sung in any genre – not just a language that is attached to our national folksongs.   To be kept up to date about the official release of the tracks mentioned, please sign up to Iona’s mailing list: www.ionafyfe.com/mailinglist  

Love Story (Scots) – Lyrics and Sheet Music (PDF)

Love Story (Scots) – Scots Language Guide (PDF)

The Cauld – Lyrics and Sheet Music (PDF)

The Cauld – Scots Language Guide (PDF)

Hud Ma Ticht – Lyrics and Sheet Music (PDF)

Hud Ma Ticht – Scots Language Guide (PDF)

Hud Ma Ticht – Recording (MP3)

Iona Fyfe – listen to more here  

Brought up in Huntly in Aberdeenshire, Iona was nurtured by the Traditional Music and Song Association movement, attending sing-a-rounds, folk clubs, bothy ballad and traditional ballad competitions from infancy. Iona graduated from The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland with a degree in Traditional Music; her primarily specialism in Scots Song. The youngest ever winner of Scots Singer of the Year at the MG ALBA Scots Trad Music Awards, Iona has toured internationally with her band, which was nominated for Folk Band of The Year in 2019.  Iona mainly sings in the Doric dialect of Scots, but describes her dialect as being “Glescadjacent” and has lived in Glasgow for the best part of a decade. She has worked to raise the profile of Scots, campaigning for a Scots Language Act. Iona won the title of Young Scots Speaker of the Year and Scots Performer of the Year at the Scots Language Awards in 2019 and 2019 respectively. In 2021, she successfully campaigned for Spotify to add Scots to its list of languages. 

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Christy Scott – listen to more here 

Hailing from Buckie on the North East Coast, Christy grew up in a Doric speaking household, with strong family links to the fishing industry. Immersed in the traditions of the North East, Christy’s passion for the Scots language piqued when attending The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and studying under Rod Paterson and Fiona Hunter. Christy first gained a Bachelors of Education in Music and worked as a secondary school music teacher. Then she returned to the Conservatoire to focus on Scots Song, gaining an MA in Traditional Music. Before this, Christy released her debut EP, Amaranthine in 2017, which features self-penned songs in English. Since then, Christy has found her own voice, and has gained more confidence in both her singing and songwriting in Scots. As part of her masters, Christy wrote several Scots Songs, all relating to ‘Songs of the Sea’, and has contributed one of these songs, Hud Ma Ticht, to the Scots Language Centre. 

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Listen to Scots Language Sangs playlist on Spotify: https://bit.ly/scotssang