The Great Tapestry Of Scotland Songwriting Competition
Posted: 19th September 2012
This competition was launched in The Scotsman on 14th June and entries closed on 14th August 2012. The winner of the nationwide songwriting competition run by Greentrax was Benny Gallagher (of Gallagher & Lyle) with his song Tusitala. There was excellent response to this competition and there were some very fine songs. It was a pity that only one could be included on the album. It wasn’t an easy call for our judges.
The Great Tapestry Of Scotland is a unique project to stitch the entire story of Scotland from pre-history to modern times, the brainchild of one of Scotland’s best-known writers, Alexander McCall Smith.
McCall Smith, together with historian Alistair Moffat and the artistic talents of artist Andrew Crummy, form a team with Scottish stitchers who will produce the world’s longest tapestry through one of the biggest community arts projects ever to take place in Scotland.
Greentrax has been invited to release a companion double CD of songs and music to reflect many of the subjects of the panels of the tapestry. It will comprise some forty tracks and will include many items from the Greentrax back-catalogue, as well as tracks licensed from other companies and individuals. Examples of tracks being included are: The Proclaimers’ Letter From America, representing the ‘Scottish Pop Boom’; Eric Bogle’s now universally sung No Man’s Land evokes the ‘First World War’ panel and The McCalman’s Who Pays The Piper? represents the ‘North Sea Oil’.
Greentrax Recordings has also come up with songwriting competition with a £1,000 prize to whoever writes the best song to reflect one of the tapestry images as yet unmatched to an existing song. The winning song will also be recorded for inclusion on the CD (hopefully be released before the end of 2012). Entries will be judged by a panel including singer and songwriter Ian McCalman, as well as Alexander McCall Smith, Alistair Moffat, Andrew Crummy and Greentrax boss Ian Green.
Entrants must choose one of the following panel subjects to base their song upon:
- The General Strike Of 1926
Scotland In Africa
James Watt And The Steam Engine
Robert Louis Stevenson
Scotland At The Movies
The creation of the tapestry is a unique opportunity to tell the nation’s history and to involve as many people as possible in the telling. The aim is to create a series of over one hundred and twenty panels that tell the key stories in Scottish history – everything from Duns Scotus to Dolly the Sheep.
The tapestry project will use a range of embroidery skills and over 30 miles of woollen yarn to translate Andrew Crummy’s descriptive artwork into a colourful, skillful and textured depiction of the history of Scotland. To date there are stitchers in practically every area of Scotland committed to taking part, all of whom share a passion for Scottish history and some pretty impressive sewing skills. The volunteers will work together for over 400 hours per panel to help make Andrew Crummy’s artistic vision a reality, and gift The Great Tapestry of Scotland to the nation.
Seventy-five children from Prestonpans Infants School have recorded local singer-songwriter Alex Hodgson’s song The Toun o’ Prestonpans to partner the panel ‘The Scottish Reformation - A School In Every Parish’.
Greentrax released a well-received companion album to The Prestonpans Tapestry in September 2010.