The Angry Corrie 19: Jul-Sep 1994

"Pop Stars stole my songs"
says Highland Grandad

ELVIS PRESLEY, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Phil Spector and Gary Glitter all have one thing in common, according to 66-year-old grandad Ben Scribble - they all recorded hit songs written by him over 30 years ago. Scribble claims that some of these superstars' best known hits are taken from Kintail Bagging Songs, which he published in the early 1960s. This is now out of print, but when we checked with Ratagan public library, they confirmed it included titles such as

"Hello Hello Am Bathach Again",

"I dreamed I saw Sgurr na Sgine", and

"Gleouraich (G-L-E-O-U-R-A-I-C-H)"

If Scribble's claims are upheld it could mean big money lawsuits or that kind of thing. I put his story to Nick Shunt of Quirrrrraingggg!!!! magazine. He was openly scornful, even when I sang him one of Scribble's earliest efforts:

Ben A'an or Nevis
Which should it be?
One's a big bastard
The other's wee

It was only when I showed him the following extract from KBS that he became interested:

We walked to Glen Shiel and she asked me if I wanted to camp
(Sgurr Fhuaran, Sgurr Fhuaran)
Well that went okay so we did the ridge up to Creag nan Damh
(Sgurr Fhuaran, Sgurr Fhuaran)
We did the Sisters from the south
And spent the night in a secret howff
We did Aonach Meadhoin, then the Forcan Ridge again
And then did Ciste Dhubh
And then did Ciste Dhubh

We hitched to Kyleakin and couldn't wait to get to Gars-bheinn
(Sgurr Dubh Mor and Sgurr nan Eag)
The ridge was superb and we soon reached Sgurr Dubh na da Bheinn
(Sgurr Dubh Mor and Sgurr nan Eag)
We passed Sgurr Thearlaich on the right
The In Pinn was in our sights
But we had to pack in, 'cause the rain had set in
And then it pissed down
And then it pissed down

I decided to check if these lyrics struck a chord with singer Ronnie Ronette, so I phoned here at her mansion in Motherwell. She evaded all my questions and denied any knowledge of Scribble's songs, saying obliquely, "No, I can't help you, why don't you try the crystals".

Alan Blanco

TAC 19 Index