This Songwriting and Placemaking project ran in May and June 2013, led by singers Christine Kydd and Ewan McVicar, involving three primary schools in Stonehaven, one of Scotland's oldest coastal towns. The project was funded by Creative Scotland's Youth Music Initiative, linking with Aberdeenshire Council's YMI Officer post.
There were six days of workshops with each school, in which classes worked with Christine and Ewan to write songs. Most of the songs tell of and celebrate aspects of their own Stonehaven community, but others are ‘just for fun’. Topics include:
A compendium song with verses from each school that celebrated many aspects of the town;
Local events like the annual Stonehaven New Year Fireball Ceremony, the tale of how at Dunnottar Castle Scotland’s Crown Jewels were rescued from Cromwell’s troops, and the catastrophic floods of December 2012;
Topics a class was studying and therefore was knowledgeable about e.g. Mary Queen of Scots, the Woods of Dunnottar, Yoga, Water, Natural Disasters, Carnival and The Vikings;
Food topics featured, including a ‘recipe song’ about haggis and neeps, what can be done with the different parts of a herring’s body, and a song celebrating the Stonehaven fish and chip shop who created ‘the world-famous deep fried Mars bar’.
In all 24 new songs were created, nearly all to traditional Scots tunes, and another four traditional Scots songs had new verses created for them. Each school’s songs were presented to parents and other pupils in a ceilidh celebration.
All the songs were recorded with each pupil group who co-wrote them.
All these recordings were placed on the www.stoneysangs.webs.com website, along with pupils’ artwork illustrating the songs.
Four edited CDs of the songs were created.
One CD is a full assembly of all the songs written in the project, the other three CDs are of one school’s own songs only.
Multiple copies of CDs were given to each primary school. We suggested that they might at a future date want to utilise the CD of their own songs as the foundation of an Enterprise project.
This work is funded by Creative Scotland's Youth Music Initiative through Aberdeenshire Council.
More information for Educators and Administrators - click here
We hope you enjoy these songs! For more information please contact Christine Kydd at Ceilidhmakers
Christine is one of Scotland's best-known singers, an experienced practitioner and curator of educational projects. She is completing a Masters(Ethnology and Folklore) Elphinstone Institute, University of Aberdeen.
Ewan has written several books on aspects of traditional Scots song, and is one of Scotland’s best-known storytellers. He has created several resource websites and projects around Scotland and in Africa and Russia, including Songmaker in Schools, and The Great Scots Song Treasure Hunt.