Song tribute to J.M. Barrie ‘Uncle Jim’

J.M. Barrie
J.M. Barrie

A new song about Kirriemuir’s most famous writer will be debuted this weekend.

Singer/songwriter Eddie Cairney, who was born in Perth and now lives in Arbroath, will be previewing his song about author and playwright J.M. Barrie at the Airlie Arms Hotel on Saturday.

Eddie Cairney

Eddie Cairney

He is on stage at 8pm and will be singing the tune as part of his set.

James Matthew Barrie was born in Kirriemuir on May 9, 1860, the son of a local hand-loom weaver, and is most remembered as the creator of Peter Pan.

Eddie has written the song about Barrie’s life and work.

He said: “I never knew that much about J.M. Barrie and when I started to write I thought it would be a nice little song about the man who wrote Peter Pan, but life isn’t like that. He was quite a sad man.

“He had a lot of sadness about him even though he was extremely famous person, he knew just about everybody.

“The thing that never left him through out his life was he had a brother, David, when he lived in Kirriemuir, who was his mother’s favourite.

“David died and his mum never got over it. She used to see him when he wasn’t there.

“That was a big trigger for J.M. Barrie wanting to create a different world.

“His mum’s memory of David kept him forever young, like Peter Pan.

“I think when J.M. Barrie wrote it was an escape for him. It was the only time he felt whole.”

Barrie’s older brother, David, died at the age of 13 in a skating accident, when the writer was only six-years-old.

Barrie even dressed up as his brother after David’s death to comfort his mother.

The song is called ‘Uncle Jim.’

Barrie became the guardian of five young boys when their parents, Arthur and Sylvia Llewelyn Davies, died.

Eddie said: “The kids called him Uncle Jim.”

The tune will feature on Eddie’s new album, ‘bluescotland woad’, which will be third in the series of his bluescotland albums.

He is also working on a song James Graham, the first Marquess of Montrose, called ‘Right man wrong place wrong time’ and one about politician George Galloway called ‘The GG Blues’.

Eddie has also written songs about Forfar bridies, Arbroath smokies and Norwegian sea dog Bamse, who is buried in Montrose.

Eddie has also written new music to Robert Burns’ lyrics, so far he has produced 892 songs.

He said tries to write songs about as many things different to do with Scotland and its people as he can.

Eddie added: “It’s got to be a quirky thing.”