GlasgowLiving…The Real People of Glasgow
I usually busk around the city centre, folk songs mostly, but my real passion is Reggae, my friends are some amazing Reggae MC’s and producers and we just had the legendary El Gateshead and Little Roy perform, they are absolute legends in the Reggae Dub Scene, they’ve been going for like fifty years, and my friends were supporting them at the Rum Shack. What a night.
Apart from that I’m not really sure what was happening in town, I had a couple of parties to go to, my friend is moving to Milan, so all my mates and me got together.
There’s loads of good musicians up and down (Buchanan) Street, sometimes it’s hard to find a good spot, this was my first time out with an amp, done pretty well considering I was only out for an hour or two.
Glasgow’s good for that though, it’s not like Edinburgh or London where you might need a permit, you just sort of find a space, some shops can move you on depending where it is, but usually if you’re not too close you’re fine.
You need to consider beggars though, earlier on I went to set up and this girl came over and was like; “mate i’ve been here all day”, I didn’t even realise, I didn’t see her, I would have gave her half my profit, but I just left cos I felt so bad..And now I’m here.
Im 23 now, I started playing the guitar when I was 13, ten years, and i’m now at music school on the guitar course, learning theory, practicality of the guitar, but on the side my folk solo project, it’s all different tunings, percussive styles and beat. There’s a real contrast between learning the theory and making your own songs, I’m always trying to be out and active, constantly gigging and networking. Random encounters.
My mates are really into the reggae dub scene which has helped me get slots at Audio Soup and Eden Festival, big huge reggae events, but there’s always a folk stage, cos y’no it’s traditional, Scottish people love a bit of folk music during the day. A lot going on, a lot to look forward to for the summer.
I always wanted a guitar when I was younger, to find my own sound, I went through all the musical stages, heavy rock etc, but when I was 18 I found my music. Even though I still like all the other styles, I knew then I wanted to commit my mind body and soul, lyrically and musically. My family weren’t all that creative, pretty normal people, but I just knew I wanted my own guitar to make my own music.
This guitar is my pride and joy, my friend actually designed and made it for me, he spent easily the best part of a year, used a variety of different types of wood, it’s truly one of a kind, it’s priceless. The funny thing is he doesn’t really like people, so not only do I find it a privilege that this guy who doesn’t like other people is one of my closest friends, but i’m humbled that he spent a year creating this priceless work of art for me.
In Glasgow you can be inspired because of the vast amount of different genres and there’s always so much going on. There’s a really tight network of people, a tight community. Funnily enough most of them seem to be big hippys who’ve travelled up from Galloway.
Talk about random encounters, my mate’s just phoned me to say Kyle from the View is sitting across from him in the pub, worse for wear, complaining to anybody that will listen. Apparently he’s been chucked out his hotel and some bird’s stolen all his stuff. Only in Glasgow.
Lee McGilvray aka FlewTheArrow…Buchanan Street