Gary Innes

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For the English footballer, see Gary Innes (footballer).
Gary Innes with Mànran in Quimper, Cornouaille Festival (Brittany, France).

Gary Innes is a Scottish musician, a former shinty player and a broadcaster from Spean Bridge, Lochaber, Scotland.

He is an accordion player and has been a part-time fire-fighter in the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service since 1999.


Innes is a product of the Feis movement and has had a professional career playing the accordion since 2003.

In 2005 he recorded his debut solo album How's the Craic? on Skipinnish Records.

Outside of his regular session band, Innes is currently involved in two bands, Mànran and Box Club, alongside Treacherous Orchestra accordionist John Somerville.

Innes plays a mixture of festivals, concerts, and corporate functions all over the world from royalty, grand theatre's, to small local sessions. He has traveled and played all over Europe, Jordan, USA, China and Kazakhstan. He joined Runrig on stage at their concert Beat the Drum in Drumnadrochit on 18 August 2007 where he played to an audience of 17,500 and has continued to join the band at many of their open air shows with 'clash of the ash

In 2010, Innes formed Mànran who hoped to become the first band since Runrig to enter a Scottish Gaelic song into the UK Top 40 when they released their first single, 'Latha Math' on 17 January 2011. It fell short finishing the week in 61st place, however they managed No1 in the UK singer/songwriter charts, No6 in the Scottish Charts, and No6 in the Radio 1 Indie Charts. [1]

Innes alongside his band mates Mànran and Pop Idol winner Michelle MacManus created the official 2012 STV Appeal charity single "Take You There" and performed it live on the show which raised two million pounds for under privileged children in Scotland[2]

Innes has also been musical director for BBC ALBA New Year 'Hogmanay show' for the past three consecutive years.


Innes started playing shinty at a young age, playing for local side Lochaber. When their youth team folded, he moved to Fort William Shinty Club, where he developed into one of the leading players of the 2000s. He was typically to be found playing at wing forward.

He was captain and man of the match for their famous victory in the 2005 Camanachd Cup final over local rivals Kilmallie and the club's historic league championship in 2006.

He has also appeared twelve times in the Composite Rules Shinty/Hurling International for Scotland. For the 2009 Shinty/Hurling International, Innes was named 'captain' of the Scotland team. Ireland's All Star Tommy Walsh broke Innes' nose in the first few minutes of the International in Croke Park however Innes continued and scored 7points for Scotland eventually beating the Irish 22-21.

He has reached iconic status in the game of shinty, an image of him playing the sport being used by Runrig on the cover of their 2007 album, Everything You See.

In 2010 Innes was named Marine Harvest and National 'Player of the Year' and for his shinty and musical talent was invited to the Queen's garden party in Holyrood.

Transworld Sport filmed a programme on Innes which was broadcast in 2010.

Innes double career as a high profile shinty player and musician has resulted in a lot of attention. In March 2009 Innes claimed that he knew a rival team had deliberately targeted him for injury due to his musical prowess. [3]

On 15 May 2010 in a game against Premier Division strugglers GMA, Innes scored 9 goals in a 14-0 victory. Innes claimed he was denied a record 10 by the referee not noticing a ball coming off the back stanchion. This would have given him the record for most goals scored in one single game. [4]

On 18 September 2010, Innes scored 2 out of 3 Fort's goals against Kingussie in the 103rd Camanachd Cup final at Bught Park in Inverness. The win against Kingussie put the team's name on the trophy for the 4th year running. [5] Innes' performance also claimed the Albert Smith Medal for the second time, having won it in 2005. [6]

Innes retired on a high at the end of the 2014 season, restoring Fort William to the Premier Division and earning his final cap for Scotland.[8] This was due to increased musical commitments.


Innes' high profile has given him many opportunities to work with the media within music and sport.

From the start of the 2010 season, Innes wrote a weekly blog for and is often involved in summarizing for the BBC in front of the camera, or from the commentary box, unless he himself is playing. [7]


2005 How's The Craic?

With Box Club

2008 Box Club

With Ewan Robertson

2009 Shouts

With Mànran

2011 Latha Math

2011 Mànran

2013 The Test


External links[edit]