Text from Pete Shepherd

Very sad news. Joe Aitken has passed away after a short period in hospital. Joe has been a stalwart of the Scottish traditional song and bothy ballad world for many years – a great upholders of Scotland’s traditional song and Bothy Ballad traditions. Winner of many singing competitions including becoming Bothy Ballad “Champion of Champions” at Elgin for a seventh year in 2020, Joe has been a guest on many occasions at TMSA festivals and at the FifeSing Traditional Singing Festival (where he was to have been a guest again this year). Joe was born into the bothy ballad tradition in 1944 to parents who were both from Aberdeenshire. His father became grieve on a farm near Meigle, in Perthshire and Joe’s earliest memories are of that farm and hearing his father singing. Joe and his wife Pat had berryfields just outside the town of Kirriemuir and, in recent years he has been a driving force on the Kirriemuir TMSA Festival Committee. Condolences to Pat and the family.

And here is Joe singing Matt Armour’s great song: Generations of Change. Matt was from Anstruther in the East Neuk of Fife.