1 October 2022



I'll sing you this October song,
Oh, there is no song before it.
The words and tune are none of my own,
for my joys and sorrows bore it.

Beside the sea
The brambly briars in the still of evening,
Birds fly out behind the sun,
and with them I'll be leaving.

The fallen leaves that jewel the ground,
They know the art of dying,
And leave with joy their glad gold hearts,
In the scarlet shadows lying.

"October Song" was written by Robin Williamson of The Incredible String Band but here it  is performed by the Scottish folk duo - The Corries. They were active between the mid sixties and 1989 when the death of Roy Williamson occurred. Though they were friends on the Edinburgh folk scene, Robin and Roy were not related. It is thirty four years since The Corries last appeared on stage. Roy Williamson was the author of the unofficial Scottish national anthem "Flower of Scotland".


  1. The Corries will be unknown to Scottish men and women under 50.

    Roy Williamson, who was afflicted with asthma, often before a concert, died from a brain tumour in 1990.
    Irish folk singer Paddie Bell joined the Corries, left them and fought a battle with depression, then revived her singing career, passing away in 2005, age 74.
    Bearded Ronnie Browne, born in 1937, no longer gives concerts, but will sing Flower of Scotland on special occasions.

    The Corries sang The Braes of Killiecrankie (YouTube) celebrating the only battle the Jacobites ever won.
    I have a pal of 81, Robert Watson, a retired teacher like yourself and an Orangeman.
    When he rings me I will launch into the chorus of Killiecrankie just to annoy him.

    Robert was educated at Hutchesons' Grammar School, taught Latin and History, published novels about John Knox and King Billy, and idolises RL Stevenson and John Buchan.
    He still walks the walk with the Orangemen, and has introduced me to a number of them, courteous men devoted to the Protestant cause.

    1. To me, an orangeman should be a fellow who sells citrus fruit at the local market. Probably good chums with a bananaman and a potatoman called Paddy. In the YouTube video, Roy and Ronnie are walking along the road strumming their cars and singing - contrary to The Highway Code.

  2. Lovely tune for this first day of the month.

    1. And I thank you for listening to it Bob.

  3. A nice way to start my morning

  4. Happy October, Neil. Your birthday is coming up, isn't it? :)

  5. I still have all my old ISB records, they sound very dated these days. Perhaps if I sat cross-legged on the floor and smoked a few joints they'd sound better.

  6. I could only listen to 50 seconds, sorry. Just not to my liking. Happy upcoming birthday.

  7. Happy October, yes! September was a beautiful month here under many aspects, even with the rain (which was much needed and truly welcome). Let's see what this month brings.

  8. It will soon be Christmas. A nice tune.

  9. What a terrific song. I've heard of the Corries, I think, but I can't imagine where.

    The theme reminds me of Joni Mitchell's song "Urge for Going," one of my favorites. Tom Rush's version is especially good.

  10. We went to many of their concerts over a twenty year timespan and Ronnie Brown's rendition of Green Fields of France can still bring me to tears.


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