|Ewan MacColl & Peggy Seeger|
MacColl was a Scottish indy supporter
He is remembered best for his songs – Dirty Old Town, First Time Ever I Saw Your Face, Shoals of Herring
He was born Salford, Jimmie Miller -he would lie and said he was from Auchterrarder and had a Glasgow childhood.
He had Scottish parents – his mother from outer Hebrides. He read of 19th century Gaelic poet Eoghan MacColl of Lochfyneside. He collected Scots ballads,
MacColl recorded album of street songs from Dublin, Salford and Glasgow with Irishman Dominic Behan. He was friends with Scots poets Hugh MacDiarmid and Hamish Henderson.
MacColl was part of the Scottish Literary Renaissance – 1920s, 1930s connected to the Celtic revival movement renewed cultural nationalism. Both looked back to poets such as William Dunbar and also to contemporary poets such as Ezra Pound, TS Eliot, WB Yeats, Edwin Morgan , first Scots Maker.
Town planning of people and their environment – place-work-folk.
Also novelists Neil Gunn, Lewis Grassic Gibbons,
Scottish Gaelic Renaissance – Sorley MacLean.
He had strong left wing views and monitored by M15. He married Peggy Seeger lived Beckenham, Kent on his song royalties. He was a prophet not fully acknowledged. Who felt and imagined himself as part of the Scotland of his parents.
We need honest visionaries who recognise the past and see the ways forward.
BOOK: The cultural and political life of Ewan MacColl by Ben Marker.
Irish Times columnist Fintan O’Toole writes, “MacColl’s influence on the culture we live through now is so pervasive as to be almost invisible – so much taken for granted that we hardly bother to see it.”