Tales Of Kirrie Toon

Alan Reid


Alan Reid was born at Arbroath in 1853. His early years and youth were passed at Forfar, and there his bent for mechanics led him to learn the trade of cabinet-making. Music and drawing were the engrossing pursuits of his leisure, and he became a precentor long before he was out of his teens. In this capacity he acted for several years at Aberlemno and Carnoustie ; and was chosen in 1877 to be precentor in one of the leading Edinburgh churches.

He had some difficulty in determining whether painting or singing should be adopted professionally ; but the securing of the valuable appointment under the Edinburgh School Board which he still holds, determined his future. His success as a precentor, music master, editor, and author, may be gathered from the list of works appended to this volume. His greatest desire is to be useful in his sphere and generation, and he is not without indication that in measure this may have been realised. These varied examples of his poetic writings are taken from "Sangs o' the Heatherland," a volume of 200 pages, published by Messrs J. & E. Parlane in 1894, and which met with such success as greatly encouraged its author.

On the cover of The Regalitiy Of Kirriemuir it reads 'by Alan Reid, F.E.I.S., F.S.A.Scot.. Author of 'The Bards of Angus and the Mearns, 'The Royal Burgh of Forfar', 'Picturesque Forfarshire', etc.

In The Bards are listed some twenty music publications for schools. Sometimes Reid is the editor, sometimes he contributes the music and occasionally some lyrics.  

Reid's book Howetoon is about Kirrie.

The below images are from a booklet created by Alan Reid's great great grandson,

jazz musician Dave Milligan, and used with his permission.