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Saturday 23 June 2018

From Lulu to The Eurythmics: discover the rich history of Scottish rock music

From Lulu to the Bay City Rollers, from the Average White Band to the Eurythmics, the Proclaimers to the Rezillos, Scotland has always had a vibrant pop and rock music culture.

Now sixty years of the nation's pop history - told through costumes, DIY demo tapes and instruments - is on display in a new exhibition, Rip it Up: The Story of Scottish Pop at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Items belonging to Alex Harvey, Annie Lennox, Wet Wet Wet, Lulu (above), Texas and Gerry Rafferty are among the 300 objects on display - many of which have been lent by the artists themselves.

Marmalade, Big Country, Del Amitri, Deacon Blue, Texas, The Incredible String Band, Travis, Nazareth, Simple Minds, The Waterboys and Wet Wet Wet are just some of the Scottish acts who have topped the charts and delighted audiences around the world.

Think Jesus and Mary Chain, Franz Ferdinand, Mogwai, Altered Images, Al Stewart and punk icons The Skids.

From Sheena Easton to Garbage, and Belle and Sebastian, the Scots have had something for every taste - and even had a couple of stars left over to give to Australia in the Young brothers from AC/DC, Jimmy Barnes and Colin Hay from Men at Work.

Gerry Rafferty
Visitors to the exhibition will be able to catch a glimpse of the leather Elvis suit worn by Sharleen Spiteri of Texas, Alex Harvey’s cane and a demo cassette for The Proclaimers' hit Letter From America, complete with hand-drawn pictures of themselves on the cover.

© Neil Hanna
There will also be an acoustic guitar belonging to The Skids' lead singer Richard Jobson.

Stephen Allen, the exhibition curator, told Sky News: “Scotland punches above its weight in pop music.

"There’s a very strong sense of musicality within Scotland, a lot of storytelling.

"In Scotland, there’s a very strong sense of identity and social justice and that’s something that comes out very strongly throughout the exhibition."

Rip It Up runs from June 22 to November 25 at the National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh.


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