Lanarkshire band pays tribute to much-loved village stalwart with new single


A popular band have paid tribute to a much-loved Lanarkshire lady with the release of their new single on what would have been her 100th birthday.

Starry Skies song Spitfire Susie is the first single taken from their upcoming album and commemorates Miss Susan Ross, who sadly passed away last year at the age of 99.

The talented sextet which comprises of Warren McIntyre (vocals/guitar), Johnny Rooney (lead guitar), Heather Phillips (violin/vocals), Jen McKee (cello/vocals), Adam Scott (bass guitar/vocals) and Sophie Pragnell (viola /vocals) are due to release their fourth album ‘Small Wonders’ in June, which was recorded at Glasgow’s Maybank studios.



Starry Skies members Warren McIntyre and Heather Phillips during their performance at the Rough Trade festival

Spitfire Susie tells the story of how Susan grew up to fix Spitfire plans during World War II, and became a much-loved teacher and Silver Wolf Scout leader.



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Susan, a neighbor of Warren’s was a “remarkable woman” and learned Italian in her 80s and went on campervan holidays at the grand old age of 90.

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The inspirational nonagenarian, who despite being small in stature, made a huge impact on the lives of others during her lifetime.



Auchinloch resident Susan Ross is honored by Lanarkshire band Starry Skies with the release of their single ‘Spitfire Susie’

She also enjoyed a highly decorated career with the Scouts and was awarded their highest honor – the Silver Wolf Badge – by the Chief Scout at Windsor Chapel on April 25, 1982, and was Assistant Area Commissioner for Greater Glasgow, as well as being Akela with the 1st Kirkintilloch Scout Group for many years.

Warren told Lanarkshire Live: “I was helping Miss Ross for quite a long time. When I first moved to the village about 16 years ago, I had gotten to know her.

“I used to walk down with her to the shops every Saturday. She was a force of nature and she was out in her garden all the time.

“I used to take her to visit her best friend Marion who was in a care home. We just became friends and I decided that I was going to write a song about her.”

Spitfire Susie was released on what would have been Susan’s 100th birthday last month and was also played at her funeral, which was attended by a host of her family and friends.




It was also recently featured as Single of the Week on Radio Scotland DJ Grant Stott’s Afternoon Show.

Warren told us: “It’s a nice tribute to her and we released it on her 100th birthday.

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“People love it; it’s a catchy tune. The words came across very well, how I got to know her and how I learned from her.

“I’ve been on the Afternoon Show a couple of times and it went really well. We brought an album out called Be Kind and it was nice to talk about her and keep her memory of her alive. She was a remarkable woman.”

Warren added: “At her funeral a local Scout leader spoke about how his life had been changed by her. She impacted thousands of people. There’s a lesson to be learned for us all. It’s never too late; that’s what I learned from her.”

‘Spitfire Susie’ is available on all digital platforms and from www.foxstarrecords.info

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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