I have restricted myself to interviewing a small random section of the community, whilst aware that there are many more who could have given equally as interesting interviews (but this would have taken me a lifetime to bring together!) The archive is ongoing and awaiting more interviewers, interviewees, lyrics, music, old posters etc. yet to be discovered in old files and attics in the area!

In talking to people about their musical experiences from early years the key influences appear to have been their primary school, the home environment, the church, the radio and, in this area, Stow pipe band. Those who were lucky enough to own gramophones and pianos made good use of these also. The many music teachers working in the Gala Water area over the years are well mentioned in the musical life stories that come through the interviews.

There were key figures in the Galawater area who were able to pass on their expertise and entertain locally. Geordie Easton was one such figure; a rabbit and mole trapper with a wooden leg, who enjoyed playing the fiddle and is mentioned by several people as having entertained drinkers, and children listening from outside, in the Springbank Inn and the Royal Hotel (both of which have now closed down). We are lucky enough to have an interview of Geordie Easton and Wull Renwick, recorded by the renowned Hamish Henderson (courtesy of the school of Scottish Studies.) This is the only interview that hasn’t been transcribed as it is quite long and rambling. However both Wull and Geordie can be heard playing the fiddle.

Ruth Flavin