Interview with Dougie MacLean, Songmaker

We are thrilled to welcome a special guest today, renowned Scottish singer-songwriter Dougie MacLean! Recently I phoned Dougie at his home in Scotland, just after he had returned from a concert tour in England and Wales, to ask a few questions on behalf of the Wenches. We spoke about music, creativity and songwriting from the perspective of Dougie's abiding love of things historical, particularly fitting for his first visit to our historical fiction blog… so please sit back and enjoy a chat with this talented and charming songmaker.

Dougie_monticello One of Scotland's most successful, respected and popular musicians, Dougie MacLean is highly acclaimed as a singer, songwriter, composer, performer, masterful guitarist, and fiddle player, and his songs are known worldwide, sung in pubs and at sporting games, and covered by other artists. From his home base in the village of Butterstone in the beautiful Perthshire hills of Scotland, he tours the world both as a solo performer and with his band. His moving songs, especially "Caledonia" and "The Gael" among others, have been recorded by hundreds of artists and some have been featured in movies and TV advertisements. His newest release, "Songmaker," is a DVD of several of his best-known songs, filmed in Butterstone. In September, Dougie will be touring the east coast of the USA, and in October he will host the sixth annual Perthshire Amber-Dougie MacLean music festival in Scotland. "A festival with vision and imagination…and great momentum!" — The Scotsman

"…a Scottish phenomenon…with his exquisite guitar style, expressive voice and honest performance, his songs conjure up remarkably vivid imagery of our world." — The Performing Songwriter, USADougie-guitar

Dougie, welcome to Word Wenches! You're probably best known for your contemporary songs, yet your music has strong ties to history, too. For example, you've done a CD of the songs of Burns and Tannahill, and you've recorded some traditional Gaelic songs as well as some 18th century fiddle tunes. And some of your songs have historical associations, including the very well-known "The Gael" (featured in the movie "Last of the Mohicans" — as well as a Nike commercial!).

Can you tell us a little about how you came to write "The Gael" ?  (click here to see Dougie performing his original composition.)

Dougie: I wrote the song for the Loch Ness Monster Centre-– it was a commission for them. The monster in the loch goes way back to ancient Gaelic myths of seahorses (kelpies), and to write this little tune, I imagined a Gaelic community on the banks of Loch Ness, believing in such myths, and I thought about how real that would have been to them. I wrote several songs for “The Search,” the CD that contains “The Gael” and other songs about Loch Ness, including a song about the vigils on the loch in the 1960s. At the time I got right into the whole Loch Ness monster thing. I’m fascinated by man’s search for myth, and I was inspired by thinking of the Gaels back in ancient times, waiting for the monster to appear.

Last of the mohicans The movie—they were looking for a contemporary Scottish piece with atmosphere to suit the movie, and they had listened to a lot of dance tunes and that. “The Gael” is an ominous sort of piece, with ominous chords, dramatic. Michael Mann (the director) tuned into the emotional feeling of the song, and he must have felt the mood I had felt when I had written it. If it comes from the right place, the music encapsulates a feeling—Michael Mann tapped into that, with the tragedy of this story of the early Native Americans and so on. You have to get into that place for the emotions, the mood, to work in a song. (click here for the movie version of "The Gael.")

When I wrote "Caledonia" that was a much simpler thing, kind of communicating that sense of belonging, of home, and that’s kind of historical too, as you can’t live in a place like this without the history being part of what makes it home for you. I love this part of the world because I know there’s thousands of years of history here. In Scotland, we have a sense of our history, we’re emotionally connected to it, we’re aware of being part of the continuity of the place — like a higher sense of belonging. I’m in love with this place, and it’s historical memory that helps make you feel part of a place (click here to watch a live performance of "Caledonia").

Susan: Your music often evokes the deeper connections to our ancestors and historical legacies– do you consciously set out to accomplish that?

Fotheringhaycastle Dougie: Oh yes. I wrote a song about Mary, Queen of Scots after visiting Fotheringhay Castle, the remains of Fotheringhay where she was beheaded, and where her coffin lay for a year, as they didn’t know what to do with it, wanting to avoid her becoming a martyr and so on. There’s such a mood in that place, an amazing sense of history there. I was standing in what had been the great hall of the castle, where the platform had been set up for her execution. Terrible dark mood there. Fotheringhay is one of the spookiest places I’ve ever been, where a terrible thing in history happened–I mean, cutting off the head of someone else's queen! For the song, I wanted to communicate the mood I felt there.

Susan: Have you absorbed traditional music techniques and styles in your own songwriting and performing?

Dougie: Yes! My grandfather used to sing in the pubs and at home, and when he’d get enough whisky in him he’d sing in Gaelic and the tears would roll down his cheeks. I come from a musical Gaelic family, very much so, and I absorbed the patterns and the sense of melody in Gaelic tunes. My mother played the mandolin and my father the fiddle, and my grandfather was a singer–and I consider myself more a singer, as he was. When he would sing and cry, drinking the whisky, we children would ask what was wrong with Seanair (grandfather in Scottish Gaelic) and we were told oh, he was all right, it was just the mood of the song got to him. And that’s with me now as I make my own music. Sometimes I’ll try something new for Jenny and them here, and I’ll play the new bit and burst into tears. When you can tip the emotions over into that place, that’s good.

Susan: Your personal interests in history are varied — you dig your own peats for fuel and you've done a little excavating on your property on the Isle of Lewis. You've been involved with bottling your own whisky brand at Edradour, one of the most historically authentic small distilleries in Scotland. And you've explored MacLean genealogy (and were featured on the BBC for your work!). Can you tell us something about your interests outside of music?

Caledonia whisky Dougie: Well I haven’t cut peats yet this year! But making our whisky with Edradour, that’s been a great thing. It’s one of the finest small historical distilleries that we have here in Scotland. And it was interesting to recently learn that during prohibition in America, that the Mafia were in cahoots with small Scottish distilleries, Irish too. Edradour was shipping whisky to Newfoundland, and it was being smuggled to Chicago. The Irish and Scots were making fortunes during the American prohibition. Scottish ties to the Mafia–amazing!

Here near my home, there’s a wee burn called the Drouthy Burn, where my dad as a boy saw the remains of a very old still back there hidden among the trees. "Drouth" means thirsty or dry in Scots, and I can imagine the folks way back then saying, Oh, I’m off for the thirsty burn! And the still would be up there.

Susan: If you hadn't become a musician, would you have become a historian or an archaeologist?

DM_CALLANISH Dougie: An archaeologist! I’d love to have been that. Though I continue to get into trouble on the Isle of Lewis, where I have a house, for rooting around old sites! I like to go to some of these places and take a few moments to visualize what was there before. Around here we have some remains of Roman camps in the hills above Butterstone and Dunkeld, and you can stand above and see the straight lines they built. The Romans got up this far, not much further. Here as I’m talking to you on the phone, I’m looking out the window at an old mound, the remains of Bishop Sinclair’s castle, back in Wallace and Bruce days. My dad remembered seeing ruins there and now it’s houses and cottages called Craigie Wallace and other references to Wallace. Archaeology is about trying to understand the past from what is left behind, bits and pieces and mounds and that. I love that.

Susan: What's next from Dougie MacLean?

Dougie: Dougie_MacLean___songmakerDVD Well, there's the new DVD, "Songmaker," which was filmed here in Butterstone Studios in our school (note: Dougie’s home in Butterstone was once the village schoolhouse, where his father and uncles went to school, and which Dougie purchased several years ago to make into his home and a recording studio—a triumph for his Dad, who was a bit of a rascal in his boyhood and wished the teacher could have known who would own that school in the future!). We’ve got a film company now for videos, and it’s a great thing to do when I'm at home and not on tour. I’m writing songs with my son now and it’s an opportunity to concentrate on creativity. For creative projects, you know, you must keep yourself happy and not compromise what you do.

Dougie's new DVD "Songmaker" focuses on acoustic versions of some of his better known songs, filmed at Dougie's home in Butterstone and performed with various members of his band. There are also two bonus videos–one filmed in the Perthshire hills and one on the Isle of Lewis. To purchase the video along with CDs and other items, visit www.DougieMacLean.com.

Dougie will be touring around the UK in August (including in Edinburgh at the Festival Fringe on Aug. 14) and he will be performing on the east coast of the USA in September (see his concert schedule here).

Please take a moment to welcome Dougie by posting a comment below — and you'll have a chance to win some of Dougie's music! We'll draw a name at random from among those who post a substantive comment before midnight eastern time (US) on Friday, July 30.

~Susan

100 thoughts on “Interview with Dougie MacLean, Songmaker”

  1. Welcome, Dougie! After so many years of hearing about you, it’s lovely to finally “meet” you, in the way of the internet world, anyway.
    I envy you your connection to the land and the music. I’m a rover and a writer and can only admire the music. Thank you for visiting the wenches!

    Reply
  2. Welcome, Dougie! After so many years of hearing about you, it’s lovely to finally “meet” you, in the way of the internet world, anyway.
    I envy you your connection to the land and the music. I’m a rover and a writer and can only admire the music. Thank you for visiting the wenches!

    Reply
  3. Welcome, Dougie! After so many years of hearing about you, it’s lovely to finally “meet” you, in the way of the internet world, anyway.
    I envy you your connection to the land and the music. I’m a rover and a writer and can only admire the music. Thank you for visiting the wenches!

    Reply
  4. Welcome, Dougie! After so many years of hearing about you, it’s lovely to finally “meet” you, in the way of the internet world, anyway.
    I envy you your connection to the land and the music. I’m a rover and a writer and can only admire the music. Thank you for visiting the wenches!

    Reply
  5. Welcome, Dougie! After so many years of hearing about you, it’s lovely to finally “meet” you, in the way of the internet world, anyway.
    I envy you your connection to the land and the music. I’m a rover and a writer and can only admire the music. Thank you for visiting the wenches!

    Reply
  6. Welcome, Dougie! “Caledonia” is a lovely song, one of my favorites. It evokes a yearning for home in me – but a spiritual home. As a Canadian, I loved your smuggling story. A few years ago, my dad told a little story of smuggling on the Gaspe coast (in Eastern Quebec) during Prohibition, and apparently my own grandfather was involved. Since he died shortly after, I cherish the family history and that connection.

    Reply
  7. Welcome, Dougie! “Caledonia” is a lovely song, one of my favorites. It evokes a yearning for home in me – but a spiritual home. As a Canadian, I loved your smuggling story. A few years ago, my dad told a little story of smuggling on the Gaspe coast (in Eastern Quebec) during Prohibition, and apparently my own grandfather was involved. Since he died shortly after, I cherish the family history and that connection.

    Reply
  8. Welcome, Dougie! “Caledonia” is a lovely song, one of my favorites. It evokes a yearning for home in me – but a spiritual home. As a Canadian, I loved your smuggling story. A few years ago, my dad told a little story of smuggling on the Gaspe coast (in Eastern Quebec) during Prohibition, and apparently my own grandfather was involved. Since he died shortly after, I cherish the family history and that connection.

    Reply
  9. Welcome, Dougie! “Caledonia” is a lovely song, one of my favorites. It evokes a yearning for home in me – but a spiritual home. As a Canadian, I loved your smuggling story. A few years ago, my dad told a little story of smuggling on the Gaspe coast (in Eastern Quebec) during Prohibition, and apparently my own grandfather was involved. Since he died shortly after, I cherish the family history and that connection.

    Reply
  10. Welcome, Dougie! “Caledonia” is a lovely song, one of my favorites. It evokes a yearning for home in me – but a spiritual home. As a Canadian, I loved your smuggling story. A few years ago, my dad told a little story of smuggling on the Gaspe coast (in Eastern Quebec) during Prohibition, and apparently my own grandfather was involved. Since he died shortly after, I cherish the family history and that connection.

    Reply
  11. Dougie, Susan, great interview. Dougie, I’m an Aussie of Scots background, and even though it was my great grandfather who was born in Scotland, I think inside every scot who lives elsewhere, there’s an exile. At any rate he raised his kids and grandkids to read Scottish literature (Burns, anyone?) and we said the Selkirk Grace at dinner.
    Then when I was a wee girl, my dad moved us to Scotland for his work — we lived in Abernethy for a year, and we brought home records of Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor, among others. No idea what all the words of Brochan Lom mean and I’m sure I’m butchering it shockingly, but I catch myself singing the song every time I make porridge.
    Love your songs, love your work, thanks for the visit.

    Reply
  12. Dougie, Susan, great interview. Dougie, I’m an Aussie of Scots background, and even though it was my great grandfather who was born in Scotland, I think inside every scot who lives elsewhere, there’s an exile. At any rate he raised his kids and grandkids to read Scottish literature (Burns, anyone?) and we said the Selkirk Grace at dinner.
    Then when I was a wee girl, my dad moved us to Scotland for his work — we lived in Abernethy for a year, and we brought home records of Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor, among others. No idea what all the words of Brochan Lom mean and I’m sure I’m butchering it shockingly, but I catch myself singing the song every time I make porridge.
    Love your songs, love your work, thanks for the visit.

    Reply
  13. Dougie, Susan, great interview. Dougie, I’m an Aussie of Scots background, and even though it was my great grandfather who was born in Scotland, I think inside every scot who lives elsewhere, there’s an exile. At any rate he raised his kids and grandkids to read Scottish literature (Burns, anyone?) and we said the Selkirk Grace at dinner.
    Then when I was a wee girl, my dad moved us to Scotland for his work — we lived in Abernethy for a year, and we brought home records of Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor, among others. No idea what all the words of Brochan Lom mean and I’m sure I’m butchering it shockingly, but I catch myself singing the song every time I make porridge.
    Love your songs, love your work, thanks for the visit.

    Reply
  14. Dougie, Susan, great interview. Dougie, I’m an Aussie of Scots background, and even though it was my great grandfather who was born in Scotland, I think inside every scot who lives elsewhere, there’s an exile. At any rate he raised his kids and grandkids to read Scottish literature (Burns, anyone?) and we said the Selkirk Grace at dinner.
    Then when I was a wee girl, my dad moved us to Scotland for his work — we lived in Abernethy for a year, and we brought home records of Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor, among others. No idea what all the words of Brochan Lom mean and I’m sure I’m butchering it shockingly, but I catch myself singing the song every time I make porridge.
    Love your songs, love your work, thanks for the visit.

    Reply
  15. Dougie, Susan, great interview. Dougie, I’m an Aussie of Scots background, and even though it was my great grandfather who was born in Scotland, I think inside every scot who lives elsewhere, there’s an exile. At any rate he raised his kids and grandkids to read Scottish literature (Burns, anyone?) and we said the Selkirk Grace at dinner.
    Then when I was a wee girl, my dad moved us to Scotland for his work — we lived in Abernethy for a year, and we brought home records of Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor, among others. No idea what all the words of Brochan Lom mean and I’m sure I’m butchering it shockingly, but I catch myself singing the song every time I make porridge.
    Love your songs, love your work, thanks for the visit.

    Reply
  16. Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Dougie. It was fascinating to learn about you, your music, and your love of history. I look forward to listening to your music.

    Reply
  17. Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Dougie. It was fascinating to learn about you, your music, and your love of history. I look forward to listening to your music.

    Reply
  18. Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Dougie. It was fascinating to learn about you, your music, and your love of history. I look forward to listening to your music.

    Reply
  19. Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Dougie. It was fascinating to learn about you, your music, and your love of history. I look forward to listening to your music.

    Reply
  20. Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Dougie. It was fascinating to learn about you, your music, and your love of history. I look forward to listening to your music.

    Reply
  21. Having a total fan girl moment! I’ve seen Dougie perform in Asheville. Several of his wonderful, evocative songs are on my writing playlists (“The Place” for Immortal Sea, “She Will Find Me” for the work in progress).
    Thank you so much for posting this interview!

    Reply
  22. Having a total fan girl moment! I’ve seen Dougie perform in Asheville. Several of his wonderful, evocative songs are on my writing playlists (“The Place” for Immortal Sea, “She Will Find Me” for the work in progress).
    Thank you so much for posting this interview!

    Reply
  23. Having a total fan girl moment! I’ve seen Dougie perform in Asheville. Several of his wonderful, evocative songs are on my writing playlists (“The Place” for Immortal Sea, “She Will Find Me” for the work in progress).
    Thank you so much for posting this interview!

    Reply
  24. Having a total fan girl moment! I’ve seen Dougie perform in Asheville. Several of his wonderful, evocative songs are on my writing playlists (“The Place” for Immortal Sea, “She Will Find Me” for the work in progress).
    Thank you so much for posting this interview!

    Reply
  25. Having a total fan girl moment! I’ve seen Dougie perform in Asheville. Several of his wonderful, evocative songs are on my writing playlists (“The Place” for Immortal Sea, “She Will Find Me” for the work in progress).
    Thank you so much for posting this interview!

    Reply
  26. I’m so glad you could “visit” us today, Dougie! I learned about your work through Susan, and now have a stack of your CDs by my computer, part of the music for making stories.
    The Gael is such an amazing piece of music–it tears the heart out. I can’t think of another movie where the music is so utterly integral, and so vital to creating the mood.
    My family tree is mostly English–but there must be a Scot or two in the branches somewhere, giving how the music moves me.

    Reply
  27. I’m so glad you could “visit” us today, Dougie! I learned about your work through Susan, and now have a stack of your CDs by my computer, part of the music for making stories.
    The Gael is such an amazing piece of music–it tears the heart out. I can’t think of another movie where the music is so utterly integral, and so vital to creating the mood.
    My family tree is mostly English–but there must be a Scot or two in the branches somewhere, giving how the music moves me.

    Reply
  28. I’m so glad you could “visit” us today, Dougie! I learned about your work through Susan, and now have a stack of your CDs by my computer, part of the music for making stories.
    The Gael is such an amazing piece of music–it tears the heart out. I can’t think of another movie where the music is so utterly integral, and so vital to creating the mood.
    My family tree is mostly English–but there must be a Scot or two in the branches somewhere, giving how the music moves me.

    Reply
  29. I’m so glad you could “visit” us today, Dougie! I learned about your work through Susan, and now have a stack of your CDs by my computer, part of the music for making stories.
    The Gael is such an amazing piece of music–it tears the heart out. I can’t think of another movie where the music is so utterly integral, and so vital to creating the mood.
    My family tree is mostly English–but there must be a Scot or two in the branches somewhere, giving how the music moves me.

    Reply
  30. I’m so glad you could “visit” us today, Dougie! I learned about your work through Susan, and now have a stack of your CDs by my computer, part of the music for making stories.
    The Gael is such an amazing piece of music–it tears the heart out. I can’t think of another movie where the music is so utterly integral, and so vital to creating the mood.
    My family tree is mostly English–but there must be a Scot or two in the branches somewhere, giving how the music moves me.

    Reply
  31. Dougie and Susan: Enjoyed your interview this beautiful sunny morning here in London,Ontario Canada!
    Speaking of prohibition, my maternal grandfather was actually a bootlegger as they called them in those days. He sold liquor from his home and thus a very busy place for a time until the law caught up with him-he served 6 months in jail leaving behind his 8 children with a housekeeper. I remember the telltale proof of his former activity in the basement of his home where you could see hidden cupboards in the wall.
    I have a better understanding of Dougie as he has shared his love for history and how that effects his songwriting. I would love to go to Scotland one day!
    Thank you for this insightful glimpse into your life and work.
    Marion Gardiner

    Reply
  32. Dougie and Susan: Enjoyed your interview this beautiful sunny morning here in London,Ontario Canada!
    Speaking of prohibition, my maternal grandfather was actually a bootlegger as they called them in those days. He sold liquor from his home and thus a very busy place for a time until the law caught up with him-he served 6 months in jail leaving behind his 8 children with a housekeeper. I remember the telltale proof of his former activity in the basement of his home where you could see hidden cupboards in the wall.
    I have a better understanding of Dougie as he has shared his love for history and how that effects his songwriting. I would love to go to Scotland one day!
    Thank you for this insightful glimpse into your life and work.
    Marion Gardiner

    Reply
  33. Dougie and Susan: Enjoyed your interview this beautiful sunny morning here in London,Ontario Canada!
    Speaking of prohibition, my maternal grandfather was actually a bootlegger as they called them in those days. He sold liquor from his home and thus a very busy place for a time until the law caught up with him-he served 6 months in jail leaving behind his 8 children with a housekeeper. I remember the telltale proof of his former activity in the basement of his home where you could see hidden cupboards in the wall.
    I have a better understanding of Dougie as he has shared his love for history and how that effects his songwriting. I would love to go to Scotland one day!
    Thank you for this insightful glimpse into your life and work.
    Marion Gardiner

    Reply
  34. Dougie and Susan: Enjoyed your interview this beautiful sunny morning here in London,Ontario Canada!
    Speaking of prohibition, my maternal grandfather was actually a bootlegger as they called them in those days. He sold liquor from his home and thus a very busy place for a time until the law caught up with him-he served 6 months in jail leaving behind his 8 children with a housekeeper. I remember the telltale proof of his former activity in the basement of his home where you could see hidden cupboards in the wall.
    I have a better understanding of Dougie as he has shared his love for history and how that effects his songwriting. I would love to go to Scotland one day!
    Thank you for this insightful glimpse into your life and work.
    Marion Gardiner

    Reply
  35. Dougie and Susan: Enjoyed your interview this beautiful sunny morning here in London,Ontario Canada!
    Speaking of prohibition, my maternal grandfather was actually a bootlegger as they called them in those days. He sold liquor from his home and thus a very busy place for a time until the law caught up with him-he served 6 months in jail leaving behind his 8 children with a housekeeper. I remember the telltale proof of his former activity in the basement of his home where you could see hidden cupboards in the wall.
    I have a better understanding of Dougie as he has shared his love for history and how that effects his songwriting. I would love to go to Scotland one day!
    Thank you for this insightful glimpse into your life and work.
    Marion Gardiner

    Reply
  36. Fabulous interview Dougie and Susan! Thanks so much for visiting the Wenches and sharing your wonderful creative spirit with us.I love your passion—for history, for music and for giving expression to the magic of letting your imagination soar. Your music uplifts us all!

    Reply
  37. Fabulous interview Dougie and Susan! Thanks so much for visiting the Wenches and sharing your wonderful creative spirit with us.I love your passion—for history, for music and for giving expression to the magic of letting your imagination soar. Your music uplifts us all!

    Reply
  38. Fabulous interview Dougie and Susan! Thanks so much for visiting the Wenches and sharing your wonderful creative spirit with us.I love your passion—for history, for music and for giving expression to the magic of letting your imagination soar. Your music uplifts us all!

    Reply
  39. Fabulous interview Dougie and Susan! Thanks so much for visiting the Wenches and sharing your wonderful creative spirit with us.I love your passion—for history, for music and for giving expression to the magic of letting your imagination soar. Your music uplifts us all!

    Reply
  40. Fabulous interview Dougie and Susan! Thanks so much for visiting the Wenches and sharing your wonderful creative spirit with us.I love your passion—for history, for music and for giving expression to the magic of letting your imagination soar. Your music uplifts us all!

    Reply
  41. You guys without a doubt have the best guests ever. I would like to say something sensible, but all that’s running in my head is “a bone fide Scotsman! They interviewed a bone fide Scotsman!” And then to realize it’s the Scotsman who wrote the best song of the entire Last of the Mohicans soundtrack, the song if you hear it in malls or elevators, you stop and look around, knowing the deerhunter is going to pop out somewhere….
    Okay, let me aim for something sensible (it will be difficult): Hello, Dougie, it’s clear you have a love and respect (and passion) for all of Scottish history–and a lot of Americans’ knowledge of Scottish history is based around Braveheart (i.e. Wallace and a bit of Bruce)–is there a part of Scottish history you wish Americans knew more about?

    Reply
  42. You guys without a doubt have the best guests ever. I would like to say something sensible, but all that’s running in my head is “a bone fide Scotsman! They interviewed a bone fide Scotsman!” And then to realize it’s the Scotsman who wrote the best song of the entire Last of the Mohicans soundtrack, the song if you hear it in malls or elevators, you stop and look around, knowing the deerhunter is going to pop out somewhere….
    Okay, let me aim for something sensible (it will be difficult): Hello, Dougie, it’s clear you have a love and respect (and passion) for all of Scottish history–and a lot of Americans’ knowledge of Scottish history is based around Braveheart (i.e. Wallace and a bit of Bruce)–is there a part of Scottish history you wish Americans knew more about?

    Reply
  43. You guys without a doubt have the best guests ever. I would like to say something sensible, but all that’s running in my head is “a bone fide Scotsman! They interviewed a bone fide Scotsman!” And then to realize it’s the Scotsman who wrote the best song of the entire Last of the Mohicans soundtrack, the song if you hear it in malls or elevators, you stop and look around, knowing the deerhunter is going to pop out somewhere….
    Okay, let me aim for something sensible (it will be difficult): Hello, Dougie, it’s clear you have a love and respect (and passion) for all of Scottish history–and a lot of Americans’ knowledge of Scottish history is based around Braveheart (i.e. Wallace and a bit of Bruce)–is there a part of Scottish history you wish Americans knew more about?

    Reply
  44. You guys without a doubt have the best guests ever. I would like to say something sensible, but all that’s running in my head is “a bone fide Scotsman! They interviewed a bone fide Scotsman!” And then to realize it’s the Scotsman who wrote the best song of the entire Last of the Mohicans soundtrack, the song if you hear it in malls or elevators, you stop and look around, knowing the deerhunter is going to pop out somewhere….
    Okay, let me aim for something sensible (it will be difficult): Hello, Dougie, it’s clear you have a love and respect (and passion) for all of Scottish history–and a lot of Americans’ knowledge of Scottish history is based around Braveheart (i.e. Wallace and a bit of Bruce)–is there a part of Scottish history you wish Americans knew more about?

    Reply
  45. You guys without a doubt have the best guests ever. I would like to say something sensible, but all that’s running in my head is “a bone fide Scotsman! They interviewed a bone fide Scotsman!” And then to realize it’s the Scotsman who wrote the best song of the entire Last of the Mohicans soundtrack, the song if you hear it in malls or elevators, you stop and look around, knowing the deerhunter is going to pop out somewhere….
    Okay, let me aim for something sensible (it will be difficult): Hello, Dougie, it’s clear you have a love and respect (and passion) for all of Scottish history–and a lot of Americans’ knowledge of Scottish history is based around Braveheart (i.e. Wallace and a bit of Bruce)–is there a part of Scottish history you wish Americans knew more about?

    Reply
  46. Hi Dougie, I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful interview and listening to some of your songs. I’ve always loved Gaelic and Celtic music, and the history of Scotland is fascinating. I have some Scots in my background, like a lot of people, and I’d love to visit one day.

    Reply
  47. Hi Dougie, I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful interview and listening to some of your songs. I’ve always loved Gaelic and Celtic music, and the history of Scotland is fascinating. I have some Scots in my background, like a lot of people, and I’d love to visit one day.

    Reply
  48. Hi Dougie, I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful interview and listening to some of your songs. I’ve always loved Gaelic and Celtic music, and the history of Scotland is fascinating. I have some Scots in my background, like a lot of people, and I’d love to visit one day.

    Reply
  49. Hi Dougie, I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful interview and listening to some of your songs. I’ve always loved Gaelic and Celtic music, and the history of Scotland is fascinating. I have some Scots in my background, like a lot of people, and I’d love to visit one day.

    Reply
  50. Hi Dougie, I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful interview and listening to some of your songs. I’ve always loved Gaelic and Celtic music, and the history of Scotland is fascinating. I have some Scots in my background, like a lot of people, and I’d love to visit one day.

    Reply
  51. Sherrie, here. This was a wonderfully well-rounded interview, with lots of historical info and some great links!
    Dougie, Susan has been a one-man promo machine for you. *g* She introduced all the Wenches to you and your music. I have the soundtrack from Last of the Mohicans, and love, love, love “The Gael.” I can never listen to it without choking up. It is so visceral. It speaks to a primitive part of me. I’m listening to it as I write this. It hit me hard in the chest, as it always does, and then my chest just seems to expand with emotion. That’s the way the song affects me. It bypasses logic and goes straight to the heart.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and loved all the historical detail. Thanks to both of you, Susan and Dougie!

    Reply
  52. Sherrie, here. This was a wonderfully well-rounded interview, with lots of historical info and some great links!
    Dougie, Susan has been a one-man promo machine for you. *g* She introduced all the Wenches to you and your music. I have the soundtrack from Last of the Mohicans, and love, love, love “The Gael.” I can never listen to it without choking up. It is so visceral. It speaks to a primitive part of me. I’m listening to it as I write this. It hit me hard in the chest, as it always does, and then my chest just seems to expand with emotion. That’s the way the song affects me. It bypasses logic and goes straight to the heart.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and loved all the historical detail. Thanks to both of you, Susan and Dougie!

    Reply
  53. Sherrie, here. This was a wonderfully well-rounded interview, with lots of historical info and some great links!
    Dougie, Susan has been a one-man promo machine for you. *g* She introduced all the Wenches to you and your music. I have the soundtrack from Last of the Mohicans, and love, love, love “The Gael.” I can never listen to it without choking up. It is so visceral. It speaks to a primitive part of me. I’m listening to it as I write this. It hit me hard in the chest, as it always does, and then my chest just seems to expand with emotion. That’s the way the song affects me. It bypasses logic and goes straight to the heart.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and loved all the historical detail. Thanks to both of you, Susan and Dougie!

    Reply
  54. Sherrie, here. This was a wonderfully well-rounded interview, with lots of historical info and some great links!
    Dougie, Susan has been a one-man promo machine for you. *g* She introduced all the Wenches to you and your music. I have the soundtrack from Last of the Mohicans, and love, love, love “The Gael.” I can never listen to it without choking up. It is so visceral. It speaks to a primitive part of me. I’m listening to it as I write this. It hit me hard in the chest, as it always does, and then my chest just seems to expand with emotion. That’s the way the song affects me. It bypasses logic and goes straight to the heart.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and loved all the historical detail. Thanks to both of you, Susan and Dougie!

    Reply
  55. Sherrie, here. This was a wonderfully well-rounded interview, with lots of historical info and some great links!
    Dougie, Susan has been a one-man promo machine for you. *g* She introduced all the Wenches to you and your music. I have the soundtrack from Last of the Mohicans, and love, love, love “The Gael.” I can never listen to it without choking up. It is so visceral. It speaks to a primitive part of me. I’m listening to it as I write this. It hit me hard in the chest, as it always does, and then my chest just seems to expand with emotion. That’s the way the song affects me. It bypasses logic and goes straight to the heart.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and loved all the historical detail. Thanks to both of you, Susan and Dougie!

    Reply
  56. Wonderful interview! Great historical info and links! I never knew that Caledonia was the name the Romans gave Scotland!

    Reply
  57. Wonderful interview! Great historical info and links! I never knew that Caledonia was the name the Romans gave Scotland!

    Reply
  58. Wonderful interview! Great historical info and links! I never knew that Caledonia was the name the Romans gave Scotland!

    Reply
  59. Wonderful interview! Great historical info and links! I never knew that Caledonia was the name the Romans gave Scotland!

    Reply
  60. Wonderful interview! Great historical info and links! I never knew that Caledonia was the name the Romans gave Scotland!

    Reply
  61. I really enjoyed hearing about your varied interests, and where the ideas behind some of your songs came from. I will enjoy listening to them even more in the future. Thanks!

    Reply
  62. I really enjoyed hearing about your varied interests, and where the ideas behind some of your songs came from. I will enjoy listening to them even more in the future. Thanks!

    Reply
  63. I really enjoyed hearing about your varied interests, and where the ideas behind some of your songs came from. I will enjoy listening to them even more in the future. Thanks!

    Reply
  64. I really enjoyed hearing about your varied interests, and where the ideas behind some of your songs came from. I will enjoy listening to them even more in the future. Thanks!

    Reply
  65. I really enjoyed hearing about your varied interests, and where the ideas behind some of your songs came from. I will enjoy listening to them even more in the future. Thanks!

    Reply
  66. Thank you for a fascinating interview. I have been a fan of Dougie MacLean for years. I remember the first time I listened to his music, so many pieces brought tears to my eyes. I especially love his version of Auld Lang Syne. I am writing from Israel which just goes to show that great music resonates around the world.
    Elle

    Reply
  67. Thank you for a fascinating interview. I have been a fan of Dougie MacLean for years. I remember the first time I listened to his music, so many pieces brought tears to my eyes. I especially love his version of Auld Lang Syne. I am writing from Israel which just goes to show that great music resonates around the world.
    Elle

    Reply
  68. Thank you for a fascinating interview. I have been a fan of Dougie MacLean for years. I remember the first time I listened to his music, so many pieces brought tears to my eyes. I especially love his version of Auld Lang Syne. I am writing from Israel which just goes to show that great music resonates around the world.
    Elle

    Reply
  69. Thank you for a fascinating interview. I have been a fan of Dougie MacLean for years. I remember the first time I listened to his music, so many pieces brought tears to my eyes. I especially love his version of Auld Lang Syne. I am writing from Israel which just goes to show that great music resonates around the world.
    Elle

    Reply
  70. Thank you for a fascinating interview. I have been a fan of Dougie MacLean for years. I remember the first time I listened to his music, so many pieces brought tears to my eyes. I especially love his version of Auld Lang Syne. I am writing from Israel which just goes to show that great music resonates around the world.
    Elle

    Reply
  71. Hello, Dougie! I’ve listened to and loved your music for years. Caledonia and Ready for the Storm are my favorites. As an amateur musician, I’ve enjoyed playing both. It’s great to see you here.

    Reply
  72. Hello, Dougie! I’ve listened to and loved your music for years. Caledonia and Ready for the Storm are my favorites. As an amateur musician, I’ve enjoyed playing both. It’s great to see you here.

    Reply
  73. Hello, Dougie! I’ve listened to and loved your music for years. Caledonia and Ready for the Storm are my favorites. As an amateur musician, I’ve enjoyed playing both. It’s great to see you here.

    Reply
  74. Hello, Dougie! I’ve listened to and loved your music for years. Caledonia and Ready for the Storm are my favorites. As an amateur musician, I’ve enjoyed playing both. It’s great to see you here.

    Reply
  75. Hello, Dougie! I’ve listened to and loved your music for years. Caledonia and Ready for the Storm are my favorites. As an amateur musician, I’ve enjoyed playing both. It’s great to see you here.

    Reply
  76. Hello, Dougie: I really enjoy your music. It speaks to the “wildness” that I try to keep buried down deep most of the time. I hope your tour will bring you along to Texas. If not this time, then another. There are many, many descendants of Gaels here and a lively culture of music lovers. Like most musicians, I’m sure you are glad that people like your music but you are really playing for your own pleasure and the feeding of your soul. Is there something you want to accomplish in music before you stop taking the long road? All the best, KathyK

    Reply
  77. Hello, Dougie: I really enjoy your music. It speaks to the “wildness” that I try to keep buried down deep most of the time. I hope your tour will bring you along to Texas. If not this time, then another. There are many, many descendants of Gaels here and a lively culture of music lovers. Like most musicians, I’m sure you are glad that people like your music but you are really playing for your own pleasure and the feeding of your soul. Is there something you want to accomplish in music before you stop taking the long road? All the best, KathyK

    Reply
  78. Hello, Dougie: I really enjoy your music. It speaks to the “wildness” that I try to keep buried down deep most of the time. I hope your tour will bring you along to Texas. If not this time, then another. There are many, many descendants of Gaels here and a lively culture of music lovers. Like most musicians, I’m sure you are glad that people like your music but you are really playing for your own pleasure and the feeding of your soul. Is there something you want to accomplish in music before you stop taking the long road? All the best, KathyK

    Reply
  79. Hello, Dougie: I really enjoy your music. It speaks to the “wildness” that I try to keep buried down deep most of the time. I hope your tour will bring you along to Texas. If not this time, then another. There are many, many descendants of Gaels here and a lively culture of music lovers. Like most musicians, I’m sure you are glad that people like your music but you are really playing for your own pleasure and the feeding of your soul. Is there something you want to accomplish in music before you stop taking the long road? All the best, KathyK

    Reply
  80. Hello, Dougie: I really enjoy your music. It speaks to the “wildness” that I try to keep buried down deep most of the time. I hope your tour will bring you along to Texas. If not this time, then another. There are many, many descendants of Gaels here and a lively culture of music lovers. Like most musicians, I’m sure you are glad that people like your music but you are really playing for your own pleasure and the feeding of your soul. Is there something you want to accomplish in music before you stop taking the long road? All the best, KathyK

    Reply
  81. Welcome Dougie! Hadn’t heard your music before this interview,but you’ve got a new fan. Am adding your CD’s to my wish-list for up-coming birthday.

    Reply
  82. Welcome Dougie! Hadn’t heard your music before this interview,but you’ve got a new fan. Am adding your CD’s to my wish-list for up-coming birthday.

    Reply
  83. Welcome Dougie! Hadn’t heard your music before this interview,but you’ve got a new fan. Am adding your CD’s to my wish-list for up-coming birthday.

    Reply
  84. Welcome Dougie! Hadn’t heard your music before this interview,but you’ve got a new fan. Am adding your CD’s to my wish-list for up-coming birthday.

    Reply
  85. Welcome Dougie! Hadn’t heard your music before this interview,but you’ve got a new fan. Am adding your CD’s to my wish-list for up-coming birthday.

    Reply
  86. Susan here~~It’s great to see some true Dougie MacLean fans among our Word Wenches as well as our readers!
    Anne – what a wonderful story about your Scottish grandparents! Dougie’s wife is Australian and he has a great fan base there.
    Elle – welcome to the Wenches, all the way from Israel, how cool!
    Kathy – I so agree about the wildness in the music. Well put.
    Marion – great story about your smuggling kin! (I wrote a whisky smuggling book, The Highland Groom, as Sarah Gabriel — gotta love those cheeky Highland smugglers…)
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  87. Susan here~~It’s great to see some true Dougie MacLean fans among our Word Wenches as well as our readers!
    Anne – what a wonderful story about your Scottish grandparents! Dougie’s wife is Australian and he has a great fan base there.
    Elle – welcome to the Wenches, all the way from Israel, how cool!
    Kathy – I so agree about the wildness in the music. Well put.
    Marion – great story about your smuggling kin! (I wrote a whisky smuggling book, The Highland Groom, as Sarah Gabriel — gotta love those cheeky Highland smugglers…)
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  88. Susan here~~It’s great to see some true Dougie MacLean fans among our Word Wenches as well as our readers!
    Anne – what a wonderful story about your Scottish grandparents! Dougie’s wife is Australian and he has a great fan base there.
    Elle – welcome to the Wenches, all the way from Israel, how cool!
    Kathy – I so agree about the wildness in the music. Well put.
    Marion – great story about your smuggling kin! (I wrote a whisky smuggling book, The Highland Groom, as Sarah Gabriel — gotta love those cheeky Highland smugglers…)
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  89. Susan here~~It’s great to see some true Dougie MacLean fans among our Word Wenches as well as our readers!
    Anne – what a wonderful story about your Scottish grandparents! Dougie’s wife is Australian and he has a great fan base there.
    Elle – welcome to the Wenches, all the way from Israel, how cool!
    Kathy – I so agree about the wildness in the music. Well put.
    Marion – great story about your smuggling kin! (I wrote a whisky smuggling book, The Highland Groom, as Sarah Gabriel — gotta love those cheeky Highland smugglers…)
    Susan 🙂

    Reply
  90. Susan here~~It’s great to see some true Dougie MacLean fans among our Word Wenches as well as our readers!
    Anne – what a wonderful story about your Scottish grandparents! Dougie’s wife is Australian and he has a great fan base there.
    Elle – welcome to the Wenches, all the way from Israel, how cool!
    Kathy – I so agree about the wildness in the music. Well put.
    Marion – great story about your smuggling kin! (I wrote a whisky smuggling book, The Highland Groom, as Sarah Gabriel — gotta love those cheeky Highland smugglers…)
    Susan 🙂

    Reply

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