Calum Kennedy

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Calum Kennedy
Calum Kennedy.jpg
Background information
Birth nameMalcolm Martin Kennedy
Born(1928-06-02)2 June 1928
Orinsay, Outer Hebrides, Scotland
Died15 April 2006(2006-04-15) (aged 77)
Aberdeen, Scotland

Calum Kennedy (born as Malcolm Martin Kennedy; 2 June 1928 – 15 April 2006) was a Scottish singer.


Kennedy was born in Orinsay, a small crofting village on the Isle of Lewis. In 1955 he won a gold medal at the Aberdeen Mòd, singing in Scottish Gaelic. His first major success outside Scotland was his winning the World Ballad Championship in Moscow in 1957.

He had his own television programme, and was voted "Grampian TV Personality of the Year". He was married to another Mod gold medallist, Anne Gillies, who died in 1974. He wore tartan on his LP covers.

Certainly his finest recording was Islands of Scotland recorded for the Decca Ace of Clubs label in the early 1960s. This contains a version of "Land o' Heart's Desire" among other fine songs in English.

The BBC produced a programme in the early 1980s called Calum Kennedy's Commando Course, which documented a disastrous tour around the Scottish Highlands in an old bus. As more and more of his cast left the tour, a red marker pen was shown erasing them from a promotional poster. Kennedy was not happy about this programme being shown, as he felt it ridiculed him, but it has since gone down as a piece of classic television. He died, aged 77, in Aberdeen.

Personal life[edit]

Kennedy's daughter Fiona is also a singer and was, for a time, co-host of the long running BBC children's series Record Breakers with Roy Castle, and his granddaughter, model and actress, Sophie Kennedy Clark. Kennedy's owned Leethland House, Glenpatrick Road, Elderslie. Which since a fire has been left in ruins. As well as Fiona, Calum also has another five daughters, Kirsteen, Morag, Morven, Deirdre from his first marriage to Ann Gilles and Eilidh from his second marriage to Christine Kennedy.

External links[edit]