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'Moira Anderson eat your heart out'
From Jeroen Schipper's FAQ: "Moira Anderson is a Scottish middle-of-the-road singer, who sings, among other things, cloyingly versions of Scottish traditional songs. Loch Lomond is exactly the sort of thing she would sing - hence Fish's comment."

The two traditional songs bastardised in Margaret are The Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond and Mairi's Wedding (pronounced as 'Mah-ree' or 'Varry'; the name is a Gaelic spelling of Mary or Marie.) Here are the lyrics for both pieces in full, courtesy of
Mairi's Wedding

Step we gaily on we go
Heel for heel and toe for toe
Arm in arm and row on row
All for Mairi's wedding.

Over hillways up and down
Myrtle green and bracken brown
Past the shieling through the town
All for sake of Mairi.


Red her cheeks as rowans are
Bright her eye as any star
Fairest of them all by far
Is my darlin' Mairi.


Plenty herring, plenty meal
Plenty peat to fill her creel
Plenty bonny bairns as weel
That's the toast of Mairi.

Chorus (Twice)

The Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond

By yon bonnie banks
And by yon bonnie braes,
Where the sun shines bright
On Loch Lomond
Oh we twa ha'e pass'd sae
mony blithesome days,
On the bonnie, bonnie banks
O' Loch Lomond.

Oh ye'll tak' the high road
and I'll tak' the low road,
An' I'll be in Scotland before ye',
But wae is my heart
until we meet again
On the Bonnie, bonnie banks
O' Loch Lomond.

I mind where we parted
In yon shady glen
On the steep, steep side
O' Ben Lomon'
Where in purple hue
The highland hills we view
And the morn shines out
Frae the gloamin'


The wee bird may sing
An' the wild flowers spring;
An' in sunshine
The waters are sleepin'
But the broken heart
It sees nae second spring,
And the world does na ken
How we're greetin'

AKA LySergic Acid Diethylamide or LSD. A powerful chemical which increases the production of neurotransmitter substances across the synaptic gaps of the brain and thus can allow parts of the brain that are only distantly aware of each other to become best friends. Terrible/interesting hallucinations, allegedly. The verb describing being under the influence is 'tripping'.

Hash, Marijuana, Weed, Ganja, take your pick. All basically derivatives of a spiky-leafed plant. The effects of smoking dope is to make you feel tired, often giggly, subjectively brilliant, and you get the munchies, which involves crawling to the nearest all-night garage and buying lots of pickled onion-flavour Monster Munch and Jaffa cakes. The verb describing being under the influence is 'stoned'. So, technically, it's obvious that Fish will be stoned before the other person, because acid takes a while to kick in. But I think that's a little too pedantic...

Infopedia 94: "mar·i·jua·na also mar·i·hua·na \,mar-e-'wä-ne also -'hwä-\ n [MexSp mariguana, marihuana] (1894) the dried leaves and flowering tops of the pistillate hemp plant that yield THC (the psychoactive ingredient of dope - Stoned Ed) and are smoked in cigarettes for their intoxicating effect."

'Margaret' was Marillion's original touring vehicle, a green Commer van, and they supposedly put an obituary in the paper when it broke down for the last time with the message 'VAN MARILLO MARGARET. In Loving memory of our hardworking friend and companion. Rust in peace. The Crew.'

A news article from the archives of
Diz Minnitt posted to the Facebook group Marko's Marillion Museum in April 2021 stated that the band were once detained by Anti-Terrorist Squad officers after someone had reported their van for being similar to one used in an IRA bombing.

Diz recalls "[W]e were raided by the Anti- Terrorist Squad. They said that the neighbours had reported Irish accents and the Commer van was the same type as one used in one of the London bombing." The bombing mentioned was a remote-controlled nail bomb attack targetting a bus of soldiers outside Chelsea Barracks on October 10 1981. Two civilians died, 40 were injured, 23 of them soldiers. The band had been playing a gig that night at the Black Lion, Northampton and were soon eliminated from enquiries."

Even more remarkably, one of the members of that Facebook group admitted that they suspected the culprit that dobbed the band in might have been their dad, who simply didn't like having a load of long-hairs next door.

In 2002, Mark Kelly commented on the Online Forum at, "The title was changed from Scot's Porridge to Margaret Gets Her Oats after a friend of Stephanie (AKA Stef Jeffries, drummer Mick Pointer’s girlfriend, who also ran The Web for a while) called Margaret, got laid for the first time! It was later shortened to Margaret. I'll get my anorak and scarf."

Songs with a link have explanations.

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1 comment:

  1. "Mairi's Wedding (Pronounced as far as I can tell from my Billy Connolly version, as 'Murray' although it would seem to make more sense if it were a Gaelic spelling of Mary or Marie.)"

    Mairi is the Scots Gaelic for Mary. It's pronounced with the emphasis on the first syllable, and with a short-a, ie kind of like the English word "marry".

    There's a way many Scots have of pronouncing a short-a over a longer time than other English-speakers which might be why you hear Billy Connolly as saying it as "Murray". Try saying some short-a word like "man" but extent the vowel-sound and that's kind of what "Mairi" would be.

    Sort of :)


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