Derek Watson: Independence Is The Only Way Forward For Scotland


The Banter Thiefs have managed to craft a number of songs which boast a high level of musical ability, catchy melodies and a lyrical quality that allows lead vocalist David Clark to make local, Lanarkshire references and observations while still managing to produce songs which can strike a chord with those from outwith the area. The band have also managed to develop a confident stage presence and chemistry thanks to an ever-increasing experience of playing live over the past few years. And if that wasn’t enough, their loyal, loud and lively band of followers are ever present at gigs throughout the UK & are always ready for the party. Here, band member Derek Watson talks to National Collective’s Jenny Lindsay about his reasons for supporting independence.

Why do you think it is important for Scotland to be an independent country?

For me independence is the only way forward for Scotland.

I’m from Motherwell, a town which was once the steel capital of Europe; however, if you didn’t know its history, walking around the town today you wouldn’t believe it. Shops are being boarded up, pubs and restaurants closing, a high level of unemployment and 1 in 5 kids living in poverty.

I believe it all stems from the closure of Ravenscraig, a decision made by a Tory government that the people of Scotland never voted for. Since then we have seen Cameron’s Tory government impose policies such as the bedroom tax, which punish the most vulnerable in our society. A vote for independence would give power to the people who care most about Scotland.

I’m voting for independence as I believe it would allow us to create a fairer, more equal society.

Why do you think it is important that artists and musicians get involved in the independence debate?

The Scottish people have a very unique identity, with music and the arts playing a huge part in our culture. Currently the music industry in the UK is very much dominated from London. In an independent Scotland we may be able to create more platforms to showcase our talent on a global scale.

Overall, what are your hopes for a future Scotland?

I imagine a country free of nuclear weapons. A country that makes its own decisions and controls its own destiny.

Watch the newest release from The Banter Thiefs below.

The Banter Thiefs – Pretty Boys


About Jenny Lindsay

Jenny is a poet and promoter based in Edinburgh. Her work has been featured on the BBC, STV, Channel 4 and the BBC World Service. She has produced commissioned work for, amongst others, the Edinburgh International Book Festival, BBC Radio Scotland, Young Scot, Host City and The Scotsman. As one half of Rally & Broad, Jenny dedicates as much time and energy to promoting the poetry scene as she does to her own writing and performances.