Multi Golden Guitar Award winning performer, Darren Coggan, added another trophy to his mantle when he took home the coveted ‘Male Artist Of The Year’ for the second consecutive year at the Australian Celtic Music Awards held in Glen Innes on Saturday May 6.
Darren won the award for his stirring song ‘Scotland’, taken from his stunning new album, ‘The Wide Horizon’. ‘Scotland’ traces Darren’s Celtic roots and tells the story of John Fletcher, a proud young Scot who left his home in Glenbuchat, Scotland, and migrated to the New England highlands of NSW, settling in Glen Innes, where Darren would eventually be born.
It was a busy night for Darren, who also hosted the awards ceremony and performed as the featured artist of the evening. Joining Darren on stage was his sister, Naomi, on Piano and Hugh Curtis on Mandolin and fiddle. Darren performed a selection of songs from his new album and indeed won the crowd over with a brand-new song titled ‘The Highlands’ that he wrote especially for Glen Innes.
“To be awarded ‘Male Artist Of The Year’ again this year, in the town where I was born and where all of my family originate from is indeed a real thrill, I couldn’t be prouder. My Mother’s side of the family, the Fletcher clan, have a strong Scottish heritage and have lived in Glen Innes since the early 1800’s. We have been making this Australian Celtic Festival in Glen Innes somewhat of a family reunion these past few years, so it’s wonderful to celebrate this honour with them all.” Commented Darren.
Darren, who can be seen on the Network 7 lifestyle program ‘Sydney Weekender’, is perhaps best known for his critically acclaimed portrait of Cat Stevens in ‘Peace Train The Cat Stevens Story’. ‘Peace Train’ continues to inspire this year, playing across Australia to standing ovations. In September, Darren will embark on a three-week theatre tour of the UK with Peace Train, affording him the opportunity to re-visit his ancestral home of Scotland to raise a wee dram in celebration of his successful song.
Darren’s newly released, and now, award winning album, ‘The Wide Horizon’, is available through www.darrencoggan.com and itunes.
SCOTLAND (From Glen to Glen)
Lyrics and Music by Darren Coggan © Control 2009
In his 22nd summer
John sailed out from Glen to Glen
For a new beginning with his cousin
And the Mac in Fhleisteir Clan
Cut his family ties and said his last goodbyes
Headed for that southern land
Oh Scotland, Oh Scotland
Though we live oceans apart
There will always be a piece of my heart
That I leave behind in Scotland
When they sailed into Port Melbourne
John stood a proud young man
Like a Fletchers’ feather guides an arrow
His heart led him straight to the highlands
The closest he could find to what he’d left behind
Is what Glen Innes came to be
The opening line to his beautiful bride
Was how he danced before Queen Victoria
Instead of digging for Gold he had a merchants smile
And sold supplies to the miners
Then he turned his hand to working the land
At his beloved ‘Ferndale’
A home to all his children
The pride in his tartan continues to be handed down
Many generations later
I find myself upon his shores
I paint the picture of a stranger
But it feels like I’ve come home
Through Glenbuchat and Glen Orchy, Glencoe to Achallader
I feel it coursing through my veins