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Issue 65 - Whisky's muse

Whisky Magazine Issue 65
July 2007

 

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Whisky's muse

Robin Laing is whisky's muse.He's recorded three CDs of whisky songs and has just completed a quite excellent book on Speyside,called The Whisky River. Dominic Roskrow spoke to him

Typical. You wait years for some new Robin Laing whisky product, and then two come along at once.

And the arrival of a new whisky compact disc and a new whisky book come complete with rather a large dollop of irony. For just as the 55 year old musician is starting to look for a quieter life he's produced arguably his finest works yet – works almost certain to raise his profile across the whisky world yet further and make even greater demands on his time.

The CD's called One For The Road and it's reviewed in full following this interview. The book, called The Whisky River, is delightful guide to the distilleries of Speyside. Robin didn't plan to produce either of them in their current form, but they meandered their way through time like a tributary of the Spey before taking on a momentum of their own.

“The CD is the third one I've done containing just whisky songs,” he says. “The first one, The Angel's Share, was recorded very quickly to meet what I saw as a gap in the market because there wasn't a collection of whisky songs and visitors to the distilleries would ask for one.

And with the second one, The Water of Life four years ago, I thought I had pretty much emptied the barrel of whisky songs.

“But I found I was still writing whisky songs and also more of them started falling out of the sky. In one example Rory's Still I first heard when I was in a folk club in Northumberland. In another case there was a singer supporting me in Coventry and she had written Fu...

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