Glasgow Letter with Robert Robertson week 15

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Donnie ‘the Hearach’ Campbell

I was deeply saddened to hear last week of the death of Donnie ‘the Hearach’ Campbell, aged 72, who was a much loved west coast figure down here in Glasgow.

I have written about Donnie once or twice in the Glasgow Letter – most recently during Celtic Connections, when I spent some happy hours in his company.

He was an avid reader of this column and was always so grateful when I mentioned his name – which was part of the reason I did now and again.

A man of remarkable energy, he was often to be found dancing and singing his heart out just in front of the Park Bar stage. Chì mi ’n Tìr, the anthem of his native Isle of Harris, was the song he always requested and an evening in the Park was never complete without the sound of Donnie’s trademark ‘Oh ho!’ (always accompanied by his hands clapping above his head) ringing out between tunes and songs.

I was in the Park Bar for a pint at the weekend and those I was with all commented that the famous small dance floor will take a bit of getting used to without Donnie in its midst.

Trail West posted a fitting tribute to Donnie on Facebook last week in which they wrote: ‘Donnie very rarely missed a gig of ours in the Park and each time he walked through the door, we would greet him with an “Oh ho!” over the mic, much to his enjoyment.’

The word ‘enjoyment’ epitomises Donnie. His zest for life was infectious and his love and passion for west coast music and craic rubbed off on all generations and everybody around him.

As popular a man as he was, my first thoughts at this time are, of course, with his family. He will be greatly missed by so many.

Funeral arrangements have not yet been confirmed.

What’s on

Saturday April 14: Ceilidh dance in the Partick Burgh Hall at 8pm.

Friday April 20: Clydebank and District Highland Association ceilidh at 7.30pm in the Napier Hall, Old Kilpatrick.

Friday April 27: Helensburgh and District Highland Association dance in the Commodore Hotel at 8pm.

Friday April 27: Glasgow Uist and Barra Association ceilidh dance in the Crawford Hall at 9pm.

Saturday April 28: Glasgow Skye Association annual spring concert (Wee Skye) at 7.30pm in the Crawford Hall.

Tuesday May 8: Glasgow Lewis and Harris Association annual general meeting at 7pm in An Lèanag on Mansfield Square.

Thursday May 10: Comunn an Taobh-an- iar annual general meeting at 7.30pm in the Ellangowan Social Club.

Thursday May 17: Comunn Gàidhlig Ghlaschu annual general meeting at 7.30pm in the Glasgow Gaelic School.

Friday May 25: Helensburgh and District Highland Association annual general meeting and dance in the Commodore Hotel at 8pm

Thursday May 31: Glasgow Uist and Barra Association annual general meeting at 7.30pm in Lourdes Secondary School.

Pub scene

Islay Inn

Friday April 13: The Keelies.

Saturday April 14: The Raggaels.

Park Bar

Friday April 13: Eriskay Lilt.

Saturday April 14: Gunna Sound.

Sunday April 15: No music due to football.