To celebrate his 40th birthday this December, Highland born accordionist Gary Innes has announced the release of his first ever tunebook. Packed full of over 80 self-penned tunes and songs, The First Forty Years spans from the first tune Gary ever wrote at just 13 years old to the newest compositions written as recently as the first lockdown of 2020.
A composer, broadcaster, former Scotland shinty player, Auxiliary Fire Fighter and First Responder, Gary has lived a very full forty years and he has continually drawn on the experiences of all of these very different aspects of his life when writing new compositions. He gives the learner and reader the background of each of the tunes, with the 80 scores accompanied by short stories about what or who was the inspiration behind the tune.
With tales of childhood frolics, shinty buses, family stories and musical mischief, every page paints a picture through both manuscript and stories. Keen learners of traditional music are in for hours of entertainment with this jam-packed book of new music.
Gary Innes said: “When I turned 30 I headed off travelling through south East Asia and was in complete denial about reaching the milestone year, yet a decade later and only a couple of weeks away from turning 40, I feel very much at ease with it. Putting the book together has been great fun and it has brought back so many happy memories and thoughts of various people, places and tours which reflect different periods in my life. I hope people will enjoy learning the tunes and songs, and of course reading the stories of the inspiration behind each tune.”
Born in the village of Spean Bridge in the North of Scotland, Gary is one of the founding members of award-winning Scottish supergroup Mànran, as well as the presenter for BBC Radio Scotland’s longest running radio show, Take the Floor and the latest addition to the stations programming with his own show, Your Requests with Gary Innes.
During 2020, alongside putting together his 40th birthday Tunebook, Gary has also been lifting spirits for hundreds of people with some specially recorded personal messages for fans and their loved ones. Gary was inspired to start recording messages for people after launching the BBC Radio Scotland Your Requests show on a Sunday evening which calls for people to give a shout out to friends and family around the world who they can’t see in person during the current pandemic. Since April 2020, Gary has been inundated with hundreds of video requests, from wedding and anniversary messages of congratulations to birthday tunes and dedications. The award-winning instrumentalist has appeared in countless family zoom calls, bringing a surprise element to their celebration. He even managed to give one pair of newlyweds a first dance they won’t forget. A couple in Germany were unable to hold a wedding reception, so their sister arranged for Gary to surprise them and perform their first wedding waltz on a live video call.
The book will be available to buy on hardback and digital from this Friday 27th November at www.garyinnes.com