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Davie STEWART is a singing-traveller with many a tale to tell. First the story of Johnny Mc Phee, a piper who was stolen away by the fairies near Pitlochry in Perthshire. He was restored to his wife but no longer remembered by his children. The second is a "Burker Story" (so-called after the Edinburgh doctors Burke and Hare). It's about an old widow woman who was carried off by the body-snatchers in a silent coach

1: THE STORY OF JOHNNY MACPHEE - [part one] - 14.10

2. [part two] The rest of the story - 2.20


Recorded & edited by Peter Kennedy and first published on Folktrax cassettes 1975.

DAVIE STEWART (1901-1972) was born April 1st, at Windmill Street, Peterhead. His father, Robert, and his grandfather too, werre general hawkers and tinsmiths, so Davie was brought up as a "traveller", spending the better part of each year on the road. Between the ages of 4 and 9 he spent only the winter attending school in places such as Aberdeen and Fraserburgh. He started to get known as a singer from the age of 10 when his family were working in the farm bothies.

Davie was 13 when the 14-18 War began. Twice he tried to join the Gordons but he was called back by his father. The third time, at the age of 16, he was sent to France where he was wounded on 3 occasions. However he joined a pipe band and was tutored by the great Scottish piper, John MacLennan. When he came out of the Army, at the age of 20, he resumed his travelling life, singing and hawking, combining farm-life in the Aberdeenshire bothies with playing the accordion and singing. 2 years later he fell in with another great travelling man, Jimmy McBeath (see FTX-058, FTX-059 & FTX-060).

Other cassettes of Davie Stewart: FTX-180 THE DOWIE DENS O YARROW Davie sings some lowland Scots Songs and Bothy Ballads accompanying himself on accordion and plays some Scots bagpipe tunes - FTX-462 A TINKER'S TALE Davie Stewart tells his life story and songs including: THE CATTLE-DROVER'S SONG, I'M OFTEN DRUNK SELDOM SOBER and THE JOLLY TINKER.

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