Burns Night is tonight and I’ve polled TwinsTown to discover their top three works from Scotland’s National Bard.
3. A Red, Red Rose
In 2008 The Guardian reported that Bob Dylan was asked to name the lyric or verse that had the greatest impact on his life. Rather than quoting his idol Woody Guthrie or poet Dylan Thomas, from whom it is thought that Robert Zimmerman took his name, Dylan selected ‘A Red, Red Rose’ written by Robert Burns in 1794.
Till a’ the seas gang dry, my dear, And the rocks melt wi’ the sun; I will love thee still, my dear, While the sands o’ life shall run.
A brilliant verse in what is essentially a Scots love song. For the climax, Burns puts The Proclaimers’ efforts to shame.
And fare thee weel, my only luve! And fare thee weel awhile! And I will come again, my luve, Though it were ten thousand mile.
Craig and Charlie are lightweights compared to Rabbie. 500 miles indeed. Oh, and 500 more, is it, aye!? That’s twins for ye! Try 10,000 mile and I bet Burns didn’t fall down at her door. No half measures for Rab.
2. Tam o’Shanter
Hmmm, I wonder why Tam o’Shanter is number two? Could it be that Tam liked a drink and spending time with his pals… enough said for now. Here we go.
O Tam! had'st thou but been sae wise, As ta'en thy ain wife Kate's advice! She tauld thee weel thou was a skellum, A blethering, blustering, drunken blellum.
Who’d have guessed TwinsTown would like a waster, a rambling, blustering, drunken boaster!? I suppose they like me well enough. I really should have stopped before stumbling into that conclusion.
Anyway, it’s time for number one, the top of the hit parade, and it’s undoubtedly the greatest egalitarian song ever written. It has even been covered by Midge Ure although his choice of venue was questionable.
1. A Man’s A Man for A’ That
Nothing if not predictable, I hear you say. Well aye, but it is good, and appropriate. In TwinsTown we have two actual brothers, but the rest of us are brothers too, you know…
For a' that, an' a' that, It's coming yet for a' that, That Man to Man, the world o'er, Shall brothers be for a' that.
Brankholm Brae the stunning debut album from TwinsTown is coming soon. The album cover has been painted by local Dunfermline artist Jack Paton and it will be featured in our very next post, also coming soon.
In the meantime here is one of Jack’s portraits of Rabbie Burns.
To see and buy art by Jack Paton please visit: Art by Jack Paton on Facebook.
Happy Burns Night.