January-February 2011


Some days there won't be a song in your heart. Sing anyway. ~Emory Austin

The singer has everything within him. The notes come out from his very life. They are not materials gathered from outside. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Sweetest the strain when in the song the singer has been lost. ~Elizabeth Stuart Phelps Ward


Scotland's Battlefield Band have written a new tune in honour of the 33 Chilean miners rescued from the ground deep beneath the Atacama desert last month and have recorded it and also released it as a video. This track came about, after three of the band were working in the studio. During a break from recording, they were watching the rescue of the Chilean miners.


About 2.4 billion CDs are sold annually and the number of recorded CDs and blank CDs sold has been equaled. Around one-third of recorded CDs are pirated.

The first CD pressed in the United States for commercial release was Bruce Springsteen's Born in the USA.

The LP (long-playing) record was invented by Paul Goldmark in 1948. The LP is not dead yet: more than 10 million LPs are sold every year.


Congratulations to Songlines magazine, which will celebrate the publication of its 75th issue in 2011. The first issue appeared in 1999 as a supplement to the classical-music-oriented Gramophone magazine. Although the term ‘World Music’ hadn’t come into general use then, the publishers’ goals fit the genre well. Before long, Songlines had become a separate publication, issued quarterly.

By the early 2000’s, the magazine had 1,500 subscribers and sold about 8,000 copies of each issue. It has continued to flourish, a remarkable accomplishment given the limited appeal of its subject matter, thanks to the staunch loyalty of its regular readers. So, here’s to Songlines’ first 75, and here’s hoping we’ll be celebrating number 100 very soon. Read or subscribe to Songlines online.


If music be the food of love, play on. ~William Shakespeare

An American now living in Scotland, Linda Dewar is a singer and a player of various instruments with strings and keys. Besides being a solo performer, she plays in the Scottish band Togarrach, and is a founding member of the revue Simply Burns. Visit her website.


All Columns by Linda Dewar