Burnsong 2009 – The Big Gig at the Parliament

Images from the Scottish Parliament Burnsong Big Gig, 30th November 2009.

All images © Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body. Click on an image for a short interview with each artist.

Burnsong 2009 setlist

BURNSONG set list 30-11-09

(1st set to be broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland 11pm)

The staging and skylights in the Garden Lobby area of the Parliament.

Scottish Parliament
1st set – 4.10pm-5pm


1.         Inveresk          4:01         Alex Hodgson

2.         Days Gone By          4:06         Marie Claire Lee

3.         Put Good Knickers On And Go Into Town         3:02         Roberto Cassani

4.         Tinto Hymn         3:27         Lisa Rigby

5.         The Poet         2:45         A. J. Roach

6.         Guthan Air A’ghaoith (Voices On The Wind)         3:30         Fiona J Mackenzie

7.         Spielberg Moon          4:37         Andy Tucker

8.         Thinking Hybrid Redirected         4:13         Emily Elbert

9.         Plate Smashing Song          2:39         Nuala Kennedy  & Ziggy Campbell

10.         All Is Not Lost         3:41         Yvonne Lyon

BURNSONG set list 30-11-09

Scottish Parliament

2nd set – 5.10pm-5.55pm

1.         Hang on in there Sunshine         3.02         Alex Hodgson

2.         Housework of the Heart         3.14         Andy Tucker

3.         Fill Asophocles          3.32         Nuala Kennedy and Ziggy Campbell

4.         I Don’t Want To Love         3.30         Marie-Claire Lee

5.         Mutton Dressed as Lamb         3.10         Roberto Cassani

6.         Only In Your Love I Am         3.45         Yvonne Lyon

7.         Thuirt Thu Riumsa         3.30         Fiona McKenzie

8.         Clockwork Music Box         3.20         AJ Roach

9.         Everything’s Changed         3.30         Emily Elbert

10.         Hey Honey I’m Home         3.30         Lisa Rigby

11.         A Man’s a Man for A’That         2.52         Robert Burns

At the Parliament

We’re here at the Scottish Parliament building, and this may be the last chance to post a blog entry before the show begins. Here are some pics of the soundcheck in the Garden Lobby area.


Chris The Bass


AJ Roach; there's a photo of John Lennon in this exact pose from around 1967, I think...


Burnsong director Ronnie Gurr (centre) chats to songwriters Alex and Andy about the Burnsong project.


Lisa Rigby writing a quick song on the mandolin (well, the tempo isn't apparent from the photo so it could be a slow song). http://www.myspace.com/lisa_rigby

Guitar geek central

The staging and skylights in the Garden Lobby area of the Parliament.


Yvonne Lyon fingerpicking on the 4-string tenor guitar; http://www.yvonnelyonmusic.com/


The staging is built out of the main stairwell.










If You’re Ready

The songwriting part of Burnsong 2009 is be complete and I’m blogging this from the back of a splitter van, on the way to the Parliament gig (see Burnsong site for more info about the project). We have a luxurious 4-hour soundcheck booked today, then an evening off in Edinburgh. The gig itself runs 4-6pm tomorrow (Monday 30th Nov 2009) and will be broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland (the Iain Anderson show) we think between 11pm and midnight the same evening. Iain will be at the gig providing links and chatting to the songwriters.

We (me, Chris Blanden on bass and local session drummer Blair McMillan) have been rehearsing with the songwriters for the last two days, and now have two 45min sets. The first set consists of the ‘winning’ 10 songs – the tracks from which the songwriters were selected, and the ones that will be broadcast initially. These were easy to rehearse because Chris and I had time to work out the chords and structures before the project began, so all we’ve had to do is work out a band arrangement and write the backing vocal harmonies. The second set is a bit more tricky because some of the songs were only finished on Thursday, but there’s some great stuff there, including Lisa’s particularly rabble-rousing up-tempo song ‘Hey Honey I’m Home’, which should serve as a nice ending to the show (although we finally close with the even more stirring Robert Burns song A Man’s A Man For A’That). Needless to say I have not compromised on (over) arranging vocal harmonies – when you’ve got a room full of great singers who love working together the temptation is impossible to resist!

And I learn that every audience member will get a ‘wee dram’ in the break between sets. Proper Scots hospitality!