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Trying to make some sense of it all, But I can see it makes no sense at all…
Trying to make some sense of it all, But I can see it makes no sense at all…

Trying to make some sense of it all, But I can see it makes no sense at all…

08/12/2023 (Staff Post - Alan McNiven )


Trying to make some sense of it all, But I can see it makes no sense at all…

I was saddened to hear of the passing of John Byrne recently. I never had the pleasure of meeting the great man but had been at few events over the years where he was a guest. My main memory of him from those events in more recent times was just how elegantly dapper he always looked in his traditional tweed suits – a very cool presence for sure. I had been aware of his work for many years – first introduced as a young whippersnapper through the cover of an LP – that’s a ‘vinyl’ to you younger people - belonging to my older brother, by The Humblebums. This was a great record and the cover illustrated by Mr. Byrne was beautiful with its elfin, Lewis Carrol style versions of Gerry Rafferty & Billy Connolly. The cover in my opinion seemed to make the music even better.  

Thinking back I remember that I had been at an opening of a John Byrne exhibition in Paisley Museum. This must have been around the late 90’s when I was working within community arts. Mr Byrne was of course present, but in those days was dressed more casually, just shirt and jeans, but I remember that the belt holding up his jeans was an old school tie... Dressed down or not he was still effortlessly cool. As we were waiting for the formal opening to take place I noticed a figure dressed in white sitting over in the corner on his own. It was Gerry Rafferty and nobody was bothering him…so I did. He looked very cool too, was very nice as I did my ‘Excuse me Mr Rafferty…’ thing, graciously signed my programme for the exhibition and thanked me. The whole time we chatted I just kept thinking this guy wrote ‘Stuck In the Middle With You’, which if you’re interested is on Stealers Wheel’s first album and has another brilliant cover by John Byrne… Paisley has produced some crackers but to be lucky enough to be in the same room with two of them at the same time was something to remember…

Christmas time is coming!

We have created a page on our website for services (Food bank, Credit Unions, Housing Associations etc.) showing when they close and reopen for Christmas.

https://engagerenfrewshire.org/engage-support/festive-contacts-and-services.html

If you would like your service added, please email info@engagerenfrewshire.com

All the best.

Alan

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