From Sacramento, Douglas McLean doesn't consider himself a prophet, but his first solo album provides many inspired utterances, statements of purpose, and declarations of divine will. A perusal of the album's lyrics on-line indicate that McLean is well versed with such poets and novelists as Neil Monro (1864-1930), Prince Charles Edward Stuart (1720-1788), Joseph Train (1779-1852), James Graham, Marquis of Montrose (1612-1650). In fact, McLean composed the music to accompany five poems from these gentlemen. In one example, Joseph Train's "Old Scotia" was originally written as a short song with nostalgic sentiments of Scotland. McLean's version uses his own music, as well as additional words.
In his own self-penned "Highland Prophecy," McLean speaks to "the demise of the Highland way of life." A yearning and fire burn deep in this bard's heart, and he proclaims optimistically that "The prophecy will come at last, The child of the Gael will return again."
McLean's love of Scotland is very apparent as he sings with a smooth reverent baritone, accompanied by his guitar, dulcimer and bodhran. Multi-instrumentalist and producer Chris Caswell played bagpipes, button accordion, pennywhistle, small pipes, wood flute and djembe. Others contributing are Duncan McMartin (fiddle), Larry Baird (mandolin), Roxanne Cargill (glockenspiel), and Winter (electric Bass and guitar on "Highland Prophecy").
McLean's music is wistful, nostalgic and thoughtful. He's even taken to learning the Gaelic language which he uses to sing the traditional "Mo Shuil A'd Dheidh," a song of parting that translates as "My Eye is Crying." McLean has a keen interest in Celtic culture, language, music and heritage. While his music is sturdy and self-assured, it may be a bit esoteric for some. "Highland Prophecy" is an auspicious solo debut for McLean. (Joe Ross)
I wanted to thank you for the copy of your cd.
…I've been enjoying it in the car these past couple of days.
I was also glad to see familiar names…
…Chris, Duncan, Larry.
Bliadhna mhath ùr dhut!
Highland Prophecy is great new Celtic music that touches the heart. The title song, composed by McLean, is about Coinneach Odhar, who foretold the future in the sixteenth century. I love the complex music arrangement, with Douglas McLean's voice as both melody and harmony, several guitar tracks, electric guitar, bass guitar, and bagpipes. Old Scotia, with music composed by McLean and words from a poem by Joseph Train (early 1800s), is about a love for historical Scotland. Shadows is McLean's music to part of the 1747 poem written by Prince Charles Edward Stuart while exiled. People will love the Miner's Song, whether they are into Celtic music or not, because there are miners and their families worldwide who identify with the traditional song. There's more, but overall, this album is hott(!), with each song touching the heart of the Celtic culture.
"I listened to "Highland Prophecy" on the way home from Larry's last night. A most excellent cd, keep up the good work, my friend."
"Hi Douglas. My wife and I are listening to 'Highland Prophecy' right now. Excellent!"
"Hi, this is Lucy, I listened to "Highland Prophecy" the other day and really enjoyed it. Jim is out and about today and will be listening to it. We are especially fond of the mandolin player!"
I listened to it last week - a little bit of magic! The stories you told and the music around them transported me :o)
What a delightful collection of melodic songs! I don't have any musical talent myself so I am most impressed by people who do! Although I already have a link to Highland Prophecy on the music links page on Rampant Scotland I've now added one to you and your site as well. Over the years I have become an admirer of many singers of Scots songs who live in the US. I am delighted by the way Scottish culture is enhanced by you all!