Introduction to the project. Who are we? The music of Motherwell and Lanarkshire. Interviewing parents and carers to find out what songs they sang or danced to when they were young. Collecting poems and words that may be useful for inventing original songs. Collecting stories, images and items that may inspire songs. Composing a song together as an example.
When you ask people, particularly members of your own household, to talk to you about music, you need to approach them in the right way. You have to make sure you can sit quietly with the person concerned, and make them feel at ease. And like all professional interviewers you will need to be modest but a little formal. You may prepare some questions in advance, for example: Where did you listen to music? Where did you go dancing? Did you play an instrument? If so, which instrument and where? Was music important to you in your life? What did it mean to you? Which songs and tunes do you remember?
Ask your parents or carers if they remember any songs about Motherwell. Does anyone remember Up the Well, or Claret and Anger?
Many well-known musicians were born in Motherwell or nearby, for example…
The LaFontaines are a Scottish band from Motherwell, North Lanarkshire, formed in 2010. The band consists of Kerr Okan (lead vocals), Jamie Keenan (drums, vocals), John Gerard (bass, vocals), Iain Findlay (guitar), and Darren McCaughey (guitar, keyboard). Their style is a unique blend of hip hop, rock and pop. The band are named after American voice actor Don LaFontaine.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/299487299″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]
The Delgados were a Scottish indie rock band. The band was composed of Alun Woodward (vocals, guitar), Emma Pollock (vocals, guitar), Stewart Henderson (bass) and Paul Savage
(drums). The band was formed after friends Woodward, Henderson and Savage were ejected from the band ‘Bubblegum’. Joined by Savage’s then-girlfriend Pollock, the band named themselves after Tour de France winning cyclist, Pedro Delgado.
The band set up one of the influential Scottish record label Chemikal Underground (Mogwai, Arab Strap, Aereogramme), run the recording Studios Chem19 where bands like Admiral Fallow, Idlewild and the Twilight Sad record and also set up the Scottish Album of the Year awards.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/38374401″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]
Hamish Imlach (1940-1996) Scottish folk singer; lived in Muirhouse, Motherwell. He was described by Ewan McVIcar, the Scottish storyteller and singer, as “a raconteur who taught Billy Connolly, a singer who taught Christy Moore, a blues guitarist who taught John Martyn.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/278789881″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
Jack Bruce (1943-2014) was born in Lanarkshire. He began his life as a jazz and classical musician, and studied cello and composition at the Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow, but then went on to become one of the best electric bass players in the history of rock ’n roll. He is best known for his work with Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker in the supergroup The Cream.
Douglas “Doogie” White (born 1960, Motherwell) is a rock vocalist, who has sung for La Paz, Midnight Blue, Rainbow, Cornerstone, Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force, Praying Mantis and Rata Blanca. He is currently the vocalist for the Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock, his original band, La Paz and Demon’s Eye
Anne Sharp (1916-2011) was a coloratura soprano also born in Motherwell, daughter of an engineer at the steelworks. She studied in Glasgow, and went on to become one of composer Benjamin Britten’s favourite singers, starring in many of his operas.
Alexander Gibson (1926-1995), who studied at the Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow and went on to become the first principal conductor of the Scottish National Orchestra and the founder of Scottish Opera. In spite of his life as a “superstar” musician, he was a humble man, who was ready to give anyone the time of day and was always great company.