The Cairngorms, “In A Big Country” and Heatwaves in Scotland!

Tuesday seems to have become my default day for posting something new, however with all this fine weather I haven’t been spending much time on the computer, or pondering blog ideas. Hmm…

Time to resort to the dash cam!

Last Saturday Mr WIAA and myself headed down the A9 to The Cairngorms as only 45 minutes from home and a great place to visit on a beautiful sunny day. Yes – unbelievably – Scotland is also experiencing this very uncharacteristic heatwave that seems to be sweeping the country. The film I took was hard won I can tell you, as every few minutes the device over-heated and had to be slotted into the car’s air-conditioning vent to cool down. I have however managed to piece together the following and when asked what music might be appropriate for it, Mr WIAA suggested In A Big Country by who else but Big Country.

In A Big Country by Big Country:

Big Country formed in Dunfermline in 1981 and had their heyday in the mid ’80s. The band had a very distinctive music style which involved engineering their guitar sound to evoke the spirit of bagpipes, fiddles and other traditional folk instruments. In A Big Country was released in May 1983 as the third single from their debut studio album “The Crossing”, and reached No. 17 in the UK Singles Chart. The album was a hit in the United States which is how my friend Rich from Kamer Tunes Blog must have come to know about them and how they became his favourite band during his high school years (I know this because he has mentioned it often). He is on hiatus at the moment but because of his great affinity with Scotland, here are a few more pictures taken whilst out and about recently, just in case he drops by.

It actually rained today, for the first time in about five weeks. Can it really carry on like this for much longer? Who knows, but with all the political shenanigans going on right now, it’s nice to be able to just chill out under the shade of a tree. Scotland may not in reality be a “big” country, in fact it’s really quite small, but it has a big heart which was what those boys from Big Country capitalised on back in the ’80s.

bg

Until next time enjoy the sunshine, and remember that even in Scotland, we still need to wear sunscreen. I can’t turn the clock back and tell my teenage self of the dangers of too much sun (let’s face it we all got burnt every single year) but a bit older and wiser now fortunately. Cross fingers it’s shaping up to be another Summer of ’76!

In A Big Country Lyrics
(Song by Stuart Adamson/Mark Brzezicki/Tony Butler/Bruce Watson)

I’ve never seen you look like this without a reason
Another promise fallen through, another season passes by you
I never took the smile away from anybody’s face
And that’s a desperate way to look for someone who is still a child

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can’t stay here with every single hope you had shattered
I’m not expecting to grow flowers in a desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

So take that look out of here, it doesn’t fit you
Because it’s happened doesn’t mean you’ve been discarded
Pull up your head off the floor, come up screaming
Cry out for everything you ever might have wanted
I thought that pain and truth were things that really mattered
But you can’t stay here with every single hope you had shattered

I’m not expecting to grow flowers in a desert
But I can live and breathe and see the sun in wintertime

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

In a big country, dreams stay with you
Like a lover’s voice fires the mountainside
Stay alive

Postscript:

It may be a small country but Scotland extends a bit wider in all directions courtesy of the many islands off its coasts. One of these is South Uist, the second largest island of the Outer Hebrides, and I couldn’t help but gasp in wonder at the pictures shared recently by a friend after a visit. She grew up there and those beaches used to be her childhood playground. Spectacular, and barely a soul in sight.

Author: Alyson

Whenever I hear an old song on the radio, I am immediately transported back to those days - I know I'm not alone here and want to record those memories for myself and for the people in them. 50 years ago the song "Alfie" was written by my favourite songwriting team Bacharach and David - The opening line to that song was "What's it all about?" and I'm hoping that by writing this blog, I might find the answer to that question.

14 thoughts on “The Cairngorms, “In A Big Country” and Heatwaves in Scotland!”

  1. Love the dashcam footage of my second favorite country (after my own) along with the mighty Big Country. Nicely done, Alyson. Thanks for the shout-out, which was unexpected. Just to clarify, they’re not my favo(u)rite band, but among artists whose careers began during or after my high school years they are my #1 (with fellow Scots Del Amitri at #2). I do rank them up there among the all-time greats, which for me includes Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Yes, Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Who, etc.

    Sorry for my extended low-profile here and throughout the blogosphere, but my family emergency/situation (depending on the day it’s one of those two) has lasted longer and taken up more time & energy than anything I expected or planned for. Glad I could pop my head above water to say hi. Hope all is well by you and summer is treating you well.

    Sláinte

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi – Thanks for dropping by. Wasn’t sure if you’d get the link or not. When the other half suggested the song for the little film, of course I thought of you. I will do a little edit to clarify the “favourite band” claim – Looking at the other contenders they are all British aren’t they. Funny how these affinities work out.

      Hope all is well with you – Didn’t realise you were having an ongoing family emergency/situation actually, so sorry to hear that. Kind of the same over here for us but at least the weather has been really nice.

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  2. Sorry I’m so slow and quiet in the blogosphere at the moment, just seems like there’s always something else to do at the moment and when I’m not doing it I’m knackered! But I’ll be back to watch your dashcam footage which I can see even just from the preview pane is going to stunning – what lovely surroundings you have.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know – It’s partly this hot weather isn’t it but when you’re really busy with work and other stuff blogging takes a low priority – Everyone is the same and understands however. The little film is not that exciting actually as mainly scenery this time but if you’re not from here I think it looks pretty impressive. Thanks for dropping by.

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  3. Big Country went well with those glorious images, but I initially watched the film without sound and heard a much spookier soundtrack, from a David Lynch movie or the opening to The Shining…

    You could have a new career as a director!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gosh I hadn’t thought of the little film with a Twin Peaks type soundtrack but you are right, it could work, if it wasn’t such a glorious sunny day perhaps. No Jack Nicholson jumping out from behind a tree either. A new career as a director? I think not!

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  4. Oh my, you’re driving on the wrong side of the road! Kidding. I kind of know this KamerTunes fella from another blog, now defunct, that we used to frequent. We were always selling the benefits of Big Country to the writer. They were briefly my favorite band during my high school days as well and I never did shake them. I fulfilled a dream of seeing the band at Barrowlands when I flew over in 2012. Mike Peters took Stuart Adamson’s spot as they performed the Crossing in its entirety. Quite moving. I became a 14 year old again.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha – Must be a bit disorientating to see the dash cam footage from “the other side”. I am continually amazed, considering the blogging population of the world, how those who blog about music all seem to end up finding out about each other. Big Country was the common ground in your case – In my case it was because Rich started a series last year called Forty Year Friday and as I’m a bit older than you guys the music featured was all from my high school years, and I became a teenager again dropping in with anecdotes from the time (as I’m wont to do!). Didn’t mention what became of Stuart in my short post above but very sad what happened to him as for me he was the face of Big Country – Good to hear however that Mike managed to take his place and they were able to perform The Crossing in a way that went down well, obviously, with fans.

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    1. Hi Marie – Nice to have you drop by. No, I went for training at our local Apple Store earlier in the year which means I can now put together these very basic little films on the laptop, but as you can see I have a bit of a problem with getting reflections on the screen etc. As for the other course, I had an interview recently and have since heard I have a place starting in September – It’s a massive commitment though and I can only do it if I can get help in place for my mum. A few more hoops to jump through within the system but I’m hopeful.

      Hope all is well in your world – Are you still painting with watercolours I wonder?

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  5. Seriously impressed with your video skills! Your road trip movie is now indelibly linked to our memories of Summer 2018 in the Cairngorms. I wasn’t aware that training was available through Apple Stores, but will now consider that possibility.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very basic video skills but learnt at the Stormfront store where we bought the laptop. I bought a thing called a Personal Training card where you can book lessons for a whole year and learn about all those unused functions on your Apple machine – iMovie was where I learnt how to string these short clips together (but not easy to upload with the broadband speeds we have around here).

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