A Song for Staffin: sparked by German war story
A WAR story set on Staffin Island, which was handed down through the generations, has inspired a new song.
Skye songwriter and musician Hector MacInnes, who made his name with the eclectic band Injuns, has released an EP called “Staffin”.
And the self-titled acoustic song has an intriguing tale behind it.
Hector, whose grandfather hailed from Clachan but was brought up in the south-end of Skye, had heard a story several years ago which got him thinking and then he heard it again more recently from a Trotternish woman.
“The story as I heard it was that there was a crofter who had seen a U-boat surface, and a small row boat land on Staffin Island,” said Hector. “He had raced back home to tell everyone, but of course no-one believed him. Apparently it was only so many years later that he was looking down on the island from the road and an older German tourist pulled up and began reminiscing with him about the drinking water that was available there, and he confessed to having landed there during the war, having no idea that the person he was talking to had seen him.”
Hector, whose older brother is Sleat’s well-known DJ and musician Mylo, teaches music at Staffin Primary School on and off. He enjoyed the war tale although he has no idea about how true it is.
He added: “I try and make a point of having some kind of narrative behind my songwriting, and frankly this was too good a tale to pass up! Needless to say it would be a terrible shame if I investigated it too closely and found out it wasn’t quite true…”
Two other new songs feature on the new EP, including “Air Raid” and “A Thousand Huts”.
To listen to the EP, click here https://hector-macinnes-mn9b.s
It is not the first song written about Staffin Island, which is also known as Stenscholl Island. Phil Cunningham composed “The Hut on Staffin Island”. The island has even given rise to the name of the Dundee-based Staffin Island Ceilidh Band. http://staffinislandceilidhband.co.uk/