Music man Ken’s song for Scotland

Ken Morton - he wrote a Song for Scotland which he hopes will be new national anthem. 'Photo Emma Mitchell'29/7/13
Ken Morton - he wrote a Song for Scotland which he hopes will be new national anthem. 'Photo Emma Mitchell'29/7/13

A Bearsden-based musician has high hopes that a song written by him and performed by Scottish singing sensation Brenda Cochrane will become Scotland’s new anthem.

Ken Morton, of Switchback Road, Bearsden, originally wrote ‘Song for Scotland’ in 1999 as an entry for a competition to find a new Scottish anthem.

The winning song would be performed at the opening of the newly devolved Scottish Parliament.

Ken (58), a proficient guitarist, was determined to rise to the challenge and worked on the song during his spare time.

He used the imagery of Scottish flags, the iconic Saltire and Lion Rampant, in the first lines that he wrote.

He suspended working on the anthem four times that year due to other commitments, but he resolved to finish it.

Ken said: “I had put the song in the bin, but woke up in the middle of the night and got it back out again.

“It demanded to be finished - it wouldn’t let me give up.”

Reminded of the famous story of Robert the Bruce and the spider, Ken was determined to try again.

He submitted his song for the competition, but sadly a short list of 20 songs was never put to public vote and “A Song for Scotland” was never performed in public.

Disheartened by this unexpected turn of events Ken put the song in a bottom drawer, where it lay almost forgotten for 12 years, apart from every Hogmanay when he’d get out his guitar and sing it for friends and family.

Ken said: “People say it’s a great patriotic anthem and it stirs their blood and gives them goosebumps.”

In May 2011 Ken read an article which said that the First Minister Alex Salmond wanted a new Scottish anthem.

Ken approached singer Brenda Cochrane, known as ‘The Voice’, to sing the song. She agreed, and they sent a demo CD to the First Minister.

Ken said: “He replied very positively and gave a copy of the song to Event Scotland, who co-ordinate Homecoming Scotland and who are the organising committee for the Glasgow Commonwealth games.

“He’s also invited Brenda and myself to perform the song at a Scottish Government event taking place at Edinburgh Castle, which is very exciting.

“We can’t wait to see what the future holds for our song.”

They are now looking for an investor for the song to get a full orchestral version recorded.

Some of the song’s stirring lyrics are printed here.