Celebrating the genius & poetry of Joe Corrie ...

William Hershaw from Lochgelly has worked with Fife musicians to create a new CD featuring Joe Corrie's poetry set to music
William Hershaw from Lochgelly has worked with Fife musicians to create a new CD featuring Joe Corrie's poetry set to music
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A CD featuring the poetry of Bowhill miner, poet and playwright, Joe Corrie, set to music has been released.

‘The Joe Corrie Project: Cage Load of Men’ by The Bowhill Players was the brainchild of William Hershaw, Lochgelly poet, songwriter and head of English at Beath High School.

It was produced by Erik Knussen and features Fife folk musicians including The Hershaws, Davey Stewart, Fiona Forbes, Jenn Knussen and The Dandylions.

William explained: “Joe Corrie was quite a famous writer in his time.

“He was a playwright as well as a poet and started writing during the miners’ strike in 1926.

“I managed to track down an ex-library copy of a first edition of his poetry on the internet.

Permission

“As I was reading through the poems I thought some of them could be set to music.

“I’m involved in folk music myself and I spoke to Fiona Forbes and we started getting people involved.

“There’s about 10 musicians on the CD and it took 18 months to complete.

“We needed to get the permission of the Corrie family to record the songs and I managed to track down his daughter Morag.

“She was delighted and has been very helpful.

“The project was partly to celebrate his work, but also to make his poetry accessible for younger people.

“Locally people of a certain age will know of him, but the younger generation not as much.”

The CD features 16 songs, with Corrie’s poems set to traditional and contemporary arrangements written specially for the project.