Feel good in Gaelic

18th July 1997 at 01:00
One for the Walkman Charles Kennedy MP

My choice of a piece of music to make me feel good would be the album Delirium by Capercaillie, a modern Gaelic folk band, and particularly one song on the album, called "Fear a Bhata". It's traditional music played in a modern idiom, and this particular song is haunting and wistful and conjures up a picture of swirling mists and heather. It's sung by the band's lead singer, Karen Matheson, who is one of the best known singers of her type in Scotland.

Capercaillie appeared in the film Rob Roy, and they have done soundtracks for documentary programmes on Scotland that have been sold internationally. They are not quite from my constituency, but from the same area and I have seen them perform live.

I've had Delirium since it came out, about five or six years ago. I play it in the car, at home, wherever I am, both in England and Scotland. Whether you are happy or sad, it is very soothing and this particular song is very reflective. It pretty much empties your mind of other things when you listen to it. It reminds me I'm a Scot and a Highlander. I have it on tape and on CD. I listen to it alone and in company.

"Fear a Bhata" is a well-known traditional song, and the way Capercaillie have recorded it, using synthesisers rather than fiddle or bagpipes, is lovely.

Interview by Pamela Coleman. Charles Kennedy is the Liberal Democrat MP for Ross, Skye and Inverness West

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