Northern Summer

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There’s something special about those long Scottish summer evenings when the light fades so slowly that you hardly notice night falling. On just such an evening, the band and I found ourselves walking on the beach at Troon, gazing out to sea as the sun set on the mountains of Arran, from where we had just returned from shooting the video for a composition of our pianist Gene Poole-Skimmings’, called “Arran’t We Special.”

None of us liked the song, but Gene persuaded us that it was because, without a visual clue, nobody would get the pun, since “aren’t” and “Arran’t” sound pretty much the same. A video, he insisted, would fix this and add a whole new dimension to the song. It didn’t, and we never released it.

As I walked along the beach next to Gene, I was struck by the beauty of the evening and what a waste it was to be sharing it with a paunchy and frankly obnoxious git like him. I sent him back to the van for more beer and allowed my thoughts to drift off in a more pleasing direction. By the time he returned to tell me that our sax player, Aldo Sachs, had finished off the last can of Tennent’s Lager, I had this song.

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