Caledonia

Album: Caledonia (1979)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • Caledonia was originally the name given by the Romans to the north of Great Britain. It contemporary usage is as a romantic or poetic name for Scotland. The song was written and originally performed by the Scottish singer/songwriter Dougie McLean.
  • No version of "Caledonia" has so far charted in the UK Top 40, however the more popular version in Scotland, which is still heard regularly on Scottish radio, is performed by the Scottish rock singer, Frankie Miller.
  • Artists who have covered "Caledonia" include the aforementioned Frankie Miller and the Scottish singers Amy Macdonald, Paulo Nuttini and "X Factor" winner Leon Jackson, who told the Daily Record October 10, 2008 about this song: "Every line tells the story of my journey. Lyrics like: 'Proved the points that I needed proving/Lost the friends that I needed losing/Found others on the way'. My best mate is a new mate, Andy Williams who was on X Factor and is now my flatmate down in London. Living there now I feel more Scottish, more patriotic because I miss Scotland so much. Everytime I come back I take a huge lungful of fresh air and just stand there looking at the scenery. It's my message to my family and my mates in Scotland that I'm thinking of them. Everytime they play it they'll know I'm thinking of them. I brought this song to the table. I said how I wanted it to be produced. I'm really proud of it."
  • In 2009 the song was featured on a television campaign by VisitScotland to mark the 250th anniversary of Robert Burns' birth and the Scottish government's 2009 Homecoming Scotland campaign.

Comments: 1

  • Lalah from Wasilla, AkWhen I went to Scotland for a holiday, I spent one enjoyable evening in an Edinburgh pub. We sang all the traditional Scottish songs then some American (think Dean Martin-That's Amore) but when the pub closed we all swayed, arm in arm, singing this song. Everyone knew the words and sung with heart.
    Dougie tours North America yearly and if he comes to your town go see him. This song is a small sample of his vast lyrical talent. I've been following his career since his fiddling was part of the soundtrack in the movie "Last of the Mohicans" (1992).
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Amy Grant

Amy GrantSongwriter Interviews

The top Contemporary Christian artist of all time on song inspirations and what she learned from Johnny Carson.

Actors With Hit Songs

Actors With Hit SongsMusic Quiz

Many actors have attempted music, but only a few have managed a hit. Do you know which of these thespians charted?

Michael Sweet of Stryper

Michael Sweet of StryperSongwriter Interviews

Find out how God and glam metal go together from the Stryper frontman.

Songs About Movies

Songs About MoviesSong Writing

Iron Maiden, Adele, Toto, Eminem and Earth, Wind & Fire are just some of the artists with songs directly inspired by movies - and not always good ones.

Frankie Valli

Frankie ValliSong Writing

An interview with Frankie Valli, who talks about why his songs - both solo and with The Four Seasons - have endured, and reflects on his time as Rusty Millio on The Sopranos.

Loudon Wainwright III

Loudon Wainwright IIISongwriter Interviews

"Dead Skunk" became a stinker for Loudon when he felt pressure to make another hit - his latest songs deal with mortality, his son Rufus, and picking up poop.