Watt Nicoll

Watt Nicoll: Watt Is A Four Letter Word — The Best Of Watt Nicoll


  • Watt Is A Four Letter Word — The Best Of Watt Nicoll
    • 1999 - Castle ESM CD 762 CD
  • Track List:
    1. Remote Control [1]
    2. Wee Wains [1]
    3. Idle Welder [1]
    4. Just Made It Legal (Nicoll/Nicoll) [1]
    5. Greenfields Of Dundee [1]
    6. The Fifie [1]
    7. Craftsmem Of Old [1]
    8. Whiskey Drinkers (Nicoll/Nicoll) [1]
    9. Ballad Of The Bog [1]
    10. Part Of The Game [2]
    11. Freedom Forward [2]
    12. The Crude Word [3]
    13. Plumbers And Jiners (trad. arr. Nicoll) [3]
    14. Never Drink The Water [3]
    15. Early In The Morning [4]
    16. Weatherman [4]
    17. The Whistling Duke [4]
    18. The Whistling Duke (2) [4]
    19. The Fiddler And The Dancer [4]
    20. Swandown Girl [5]
    21. One Man And A Double Whiskey [5]

  • Credits
    • Project Co-ordinator: Steve Hammonds
    • Design: Hugh Gilmour
    • All tracks composed by Watt Nicoll, unless otherwise noted

  • Notes:
    • No songs from Nice to be Nice: 1971 - Transatlantic XTRA 1122 LP, are included in this compilation.

Sleeve Notes

At around the same time in the mid-Sixties that comedian folk singers Billy Connolly and Hamish Imlach were touring the folk clubs in Scotland, another entertainer was also becoming popular. His name was Watt Nicoll and his repertoire of traditional Scottish ballads, many reinvented with contemporary lyrics of questionable taste, and original songs, some of a political nature, but mostly veering towards the lavatorial, seemed to appeal to the club audiences of the day. He thought of himself as a " sudden thing " or a kind of " happening " and was often considered controversial. His idea of a good time was a large number of people enjoying, oceans of beer, songs with rousing choruses and plenty of bawdy banter, most of it improvised.

This collection is drawn from the archives of the XTRA label, the mid-price offshoot of Transatlantic Records, who were later to launch the recording careers of Billy Connolly and Richard Digance. The twenty one tracks include material from five of Watt NIcoll's six XTRA LPs, with accompaniments provided by many of the leading folk musicians of the day and, in particular, his companion Doreen Swan, a former Miss Scotland. The live tracks include some of his stage patter and Watt plays guitar or penny whistle on most tracks.