IMG_5408I’ve never really got over the idea that the summer holidays are endless. 7 weeks as a child made it quite possible to be a different person coming back to school than the one who’d run out of the gates at the end of June. I remember wanting to come back into the next year and be looking and sounding different. It rarely worked.

This morning I had a strong sense of those long July weeks when I spent a bit of time sorting out the path at the back of my house. Turning over some unwanted weeds I spied a couple of beautiful beetles and remembered again being the boy who, with his chums next door, collected all manner of insects, bees and assorted wildlife. Mornings would drift into afternoon as bees, wasps and all manner of myriapoda were buckled into makeshift dens, boxes and jars. It seemed to me that we rarely ventured home, though in truth, we never really went that far away either. I distinctly recall managing to return to the house fairly quickly when an insecure bee jar broke free and the newly liberated buzzers took revenge on their captor. It was all of this which went through my mind this morning pulling out the weeds and generally getting lost in my garden. I found myself thinking, ‘It’s summer, so this is where I’m really meant to be.’

It’s probably me stretching my holiday as long as possible. Returning from a warm place to a sunny Scotland is always the bonus we yearn for. But I am back and, as you may have seen on my Life in Ten Pics on the telly last week I’m delighted to be back in the studio to play you some music I’m loving at the moment.

Tonight we’ll pay tribute to this family:


For the full story of The Browns is better told by my radio hero, Eddie Stubbs who shares his memories of Bonnie Brown when her death in July was the subject of one of his great blog. We’ll play you some Browns from vinyl tonight.

We’ll also play you some great selections from one of our favourite record labels, Third Man Records. Not only do they record, master, manufacture and distribute the records from their Pie Town HQ in Nashville they’ve recently decided to play one of their records in space…….I know…more tonight featuring The Raconteurs, Margo Price and new signing Dwight Yoakam.


We’ll have some wonderful new records from Band of Horses, Miranda Lambert, Haley Bonar and Brent Cobb. Look out for some vintage Alan Jackson from his excellent boxed set compilation and, of course, this week’s Merle Moment.

We’ll be on from Five past Nine on Tuesday on BBC Radio Scotland FM. Join me and send me a picture if you’re listening out of doors too.