Folk star to help Uddingston Pride celebrate 20th anniversary

Alastair McDonald
Alastair McDonald

Scottish folk singer Alastair McDonald plays a rare solo gig in Lanarkshire tonight (Wednesday).

The free concert at Park Church, which is part of the Sir Boyd Tunnock Uddingston Music Festival 2020, is also a celebration of 20 years of community group Uddingston Pride.

The much-loved star is delighted to be back in the village and comes straight from Celtic Connections where he appeared alongside singer songwriter and broadcaster Jimmie Macgregor.

Alastair (78) said: “It’ll be great to be in Uddingston. This will be my fifth appearance and it’s always a joy.

“I am delighted to be a part of the Musicfest which is the brainchild of retired local teacher Lorna Cammock and is in its eighth year now.

“I never take these invitations for granted - I might even learn a new song for the occasion!”

Alastair, famed for his recordings of folk songs The Barras and The Massacre of Glencoe, takes to the stage at 7.30pm.

Over the years he has worked with Scottish showbiz stalwarts including the late greats Jimmy Logan, Calum Kennedy and Russell Hunter and actor John Cairney.

He’s promising some old songs - including children’s hits Sam the Skull, by Harry Hagan and Matt McGinn’s The Wee Kirkcudbright Centipede - along with new work.

Alastair said: “The Wee Kirkcudbright Centipede was just one of those gifts that life presents.

“Matt McGinn phoned me one day and sang it to me over the phone and I still sing it 40-odd years later.”

He appeared on January 22 at Oran Mor in Glasgow, during an evening to celebrate Jimmie’s 90th birthday.

And he’s currently playing with dixie jazz quartet Quattro Mac Jazz.

He said: “We have a winter residency with monthly appearances at Whitecraigs Golf Club, one of the oldest established jazz clubs in Scotland.”

Uddingston Music Festival runs until Sunday.

Liz Wilson, who joined Uddingston Pride 18 years ago and has been chairwoman for 15 years, said: “I don’t know where the time has gone. I still can’t believe it has been 20 years. We’re looking forward to celebrating.”

For more details on Musicfest see Facebook/UddingstonMusicFest

Alastair’s website is www.corbanrecordings.co.uk