Dundee songwriter/singer Michael Marra died a few months ago. The Guardian’s obituary is here.
The obituary mentions his songs General Grant’s Visit to Dundee and Frida Kahlo’s Visit to the Tay Bridge Bar saying they illustrate Marra’s humour. Well, maybe. What is most astonishing is that General Grant (as President Grant) actually did visit Dundee. I don’t think Frida Kahlo ever frequented the Tay Bridge bar, though, which is an example of idiosyncratic humour.
I didn’t mark Marra’s passing at the time because I was searching for a particular song of his which I remember from the first time he came to my attention. This was on an STV programme after the late evening news many moons ago. For this one he strode, wielding his guitar, through a flat in the process of refurbishment.
The song was the almost bizarre Painters Painting Paint which I have now been able to access. You can find it if you scroll down to number 36 on this webpage.
His gravel voice was not to everyone’s taste but he was a significant figure on the Scottish music scene, not least for his influence on it.
This You Tube clip says “Mother Glasgow cover.” In fact Marra wrote the song and it was Hue And Cry who covered it.
Michael Marra: 17/2/1952 – 23/10/2012. So it goes.