The three are Alex Beaton, Brian Fogarty and Leonard Sturrock. All are 19 years old, all attended the same school and all became engineering apprentices on leaving.
Their first contact with the world of music came when they formed a skiffle group in school. On leaving, the boys lost touch with one another although Brian and Leonard did sing in clubs together and Alex did some singing on his own. At this time they were all ardent 'pop' music fans. Their conversion to folk music began when Brian and Leonard went on holiday together. They made friends with a German student who ran a folk group in his own country and was over here looking for new songs. The boys were so impressed with his brand of music that they immediately began experimenting and studying groups like The Kingston Trio, who played the sound they liked.
The group really came about when Leonard had an accident. He was involved in a car crash which Alex and Brian knew nothing about until they read it in the newspaper. They began visiting him in hospital and this is how the three got together again. Later, at a party, they decided to form the group. For months, the boys experimented and practised, learning songs and developing a more commercial style as opposed to the usual Scottish folksound.
Early in 1963, The Cumberland Three visited Glasgow's top jazz club. The Royal Garden, where proprietor Ian Forrest gave them a two-week trial. They sang a selection of popular folk material and were such a success that they were offered a residency, playing alternate weeks with Josh McRae. In the summer they appeared at a big folk concert in Glasgow with Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor which was followed by numerous radio dates and engagements at top Glasgow clubs. The boys quote Robin and Jimmie as one of the biggest influences on their career and they are second in popularity to this famous pair in Scotland.
The time came when The Cumberland Three decided they had gone about as far as they could go in Scotland, so in August 1963 they came to London for an "exploring holiday". Although not a concentrated effort, the boys visited a few agents — with no luck. Then, on the last day of the trip they met agent Malcolm Nixon who was very impressed and arranged for them to come down again for an audition. Passing this successfully and signing with Malcolm, the boys moved down to London and are currently fully occupied with engagements and radio dates. Although they would naturally like a hit disc, this doesn't worry them. They'd hate to see a folk 'boom' in Britain as they feel the music might then be ruined. To remain steadily popular and progress is their main ambition, and as long as they do quite well — The Cumberland Three will be happy.
Alex Beaton was born on July 15, 1944, is 6ft. 1½ins. tall and has dark hair. At school. Alex shone at athletics which he still follows closely. He likes — collecting bookmatches, oil painting and commercial art. He dislikes — having too little time to do everything he wants to do.
Brian Fogarty was born on January 31, 1944. is 5ft. 7½ins. tall and has fair hair. He likes — cycling, reading, and listening to classical guitar. He dislikes — the state of British Railways.
Leonard Sturrock was born on March 16,1944, is 5ft. 9½ins. tall and has fair hair. He makes model aeroplanes as a hobby and is keen on motor racing. He dislikes — non-conformists.
All three like The Kingston Trio, The Everly Brothers, Peter, Paul and Mary, Robin Hall and Jimmie McGregor. They all have a liking for London restaurants and have a joint ambition to play in the major capitals of Europe.
The fierce warrior nature of the Caledonian tribes was first documented historically by Roman Governor Agricola's invasion records, and subsequent reports foretold the grand capacity of this unique race for tenacious combat, unabashed treachery, incredible loyalty, and fierce love of romantic adventure. Gathered here in traditional ballad and contemporary song, are but a few moments in Scotland's martial history that attempt to capture the essence of that romantic past.
The rich baritone voice of this Glasgow-born singer reaches into the deepest corners of the Scottish expatriate's heart and captures the spirit of pride and purpose lost in distance and time. His keen interest in the history and drama of the Scottish people's story can be felt in each song's arrangement and his stirring interpretation.
Born Alexander Macleod Beaton, Alex is a resident of Los Angeles, California. He emigrated to the States in 1965 after enjoying a popular career as a folk-singer in the United Kingdom in the early 1960's. He turned professional as a member of the Cumberland Three, one of Britain's top folk groups of that era. In the intervening years he has directed his efforts to song-writing in the American country music field, having songs which won the International American Song Festival Awards in 1974. A regular performer throughout the States singing country and western music, his first love has remained the songs of his homeland. "Wherever brother Scots are gathered," there you'll find Alex Beaton, and it is in that spirit that this album is presented.
A Scottish Soldier —
A stirring lament of a dying soldier in a foreign land The melody comes bom the grand piping tune The Green Hills of Tyrol The contemporary lyrics were made famous by the popular Scottish entertainer, Andy Stewart.
Bonnie Charlie —
A beautiful ballad that calls for the return of the young pretender. Prince Charles Edward Stuart, after his defeat at Culloden, and his escape to France in 1746.
Scots Wha Hae —
Tradition has it that the old tune Hey Tuitie Taitie was the marching tune of King Robert the Bruce at the Battle of Bannockbum. 1314. Scotland's national poet, Robert Burns, was inspired by the theme of liberty and independence to write the lyrics, supposing that it was the King's address to his heroic army on that eventful morning before the battle.
Stoutest Man In The Forty Twa —
A humorous tale of a proud soldier of the famed 42nd Highland Regiment. The regiment was formed by six independent companies of Highlanders in 1725 as a police force. It was later to become world famous as the Black Watch.
The Bonnie Earl O'Moray —
The young Earl of Murray, who inherited the Earldom from the Regent of Scotland after the abdication of Mary, Queen of Scots, was slain by Gordon of Buckie and the Earl of Huntley in February, 1592. It was suspected that King James VI ordered the killing of the young Earl of Murray, due to his jealousy of the Earl's relationship with the young Queen, Anne.
Hey Johnnie Cope —
General Sir John Cope commanded the Royal forces against the young pretender, Prince Charles Edward Stuart, in the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745. He was soundly defeated by the Highland army at the Battle of Preston-Pans.
A lovely song written by Rod McKuen for the Movie The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, which captures the poetic romance in the Scottish soul.
Bonnie Lass Of Fyvie —
The old story of a soldier's love for a pretty girl met in time of war, and her loss when he dies in battle.
Piper O'Dundee —
A well-known piper of the Jacobite Rebellion of 1715, was Carnegie of Finnhaven. It is reported that he fled from the Battle of Sherriff-Muir when the Jacobites were led by the Earl of Mar, while the Royal forces were under the Duke of Argyll.
Dark Island —
A Scottish wanderer's song of reflection looking back across the years and seas to his homeland, the lovely Dark Island.
Scotland The Brave —
No song captures the positive impulse of all that is Scotland more than this, the best known of all pipes tunes. With lyrics, it has become the effective National Anthem.