Penny Stone, 'Now More Than Ever, Here More Than Anywhere: 50 Years of Scottish Songs for Nuclear Disarmament'

IssueMarch 2009
Review by Jane Lewis

Now More Than Ever, Here More Than Anywhere is the title of the last song in this well-researched and epic anti-nuclear song encyclopaedia. The song was written by singer songwriter Geordie McIntyre especially for the book and sent with a note saying, “a song in print is dead-in-the-water – to make it sail, it has to be sung.”

The spirit of this note flows through the book, which tells the story of the last 50 years of Scottish CND through song, ear-witness accounts and narrative by some of the song writers.

The book includes songs by well-known musicians such as Frankie Armstrong, David Farrard, Dick Gaughan, the Glasgow Eskimos, Hamish Henderson, Alistair Hulett, Pat Humphreys, Ewan McColl, Ewan McVicar, Nancy Nicolson, Karine Polwart, Leon Rosselson, Theo Simon and many, many others.

In addition to being a priceless collection of over 100 songs, plus those on song sheets from the Aldermaston marches, Greenham Common and Faslane 365 (including musical notation), Now More Than Ever is a humorous and thoughtful testimony.

Penny Stone, who compiled the book, explains that she has notated all songs except four for copyright reasons and Oh I Do Like To Live Beside The Seaside because she finds it intensely irritating and does not want to perpetuate its survival!

Now More Than Ever is both a galvanising trip down memory lane and an inspiring and compelling call to action. As Penny says right at the beginning of the book, “I didn’t go to all the effort of digging up and collating the songs in this book so that they could get dusty again in a different format.… Go on – get out there and get singing!” It also challenges us to update the songs we sing and to write new ones as history changes the shape of our protests.

The book is dedicated to: “everyone who has ever belted out a song for peace. Whilst there is breath in our lungs and concern in our hearts, may we keep singing until we are heard.”

If this brings a smile to your face, then order yourself a copy right now, and one for a friend. At £5 a copy, it is the bargain of the year. You will not be disappointed.

Oh - and if you don’t think you can sing, Penny invites you to contact her…

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