AN Edinburgh based singer songwriter has toured Europe promoting his “most honest, direct and heartfelt collection of songs yet”, which includes a track focusing on independence.

Dundee-raised Simon Kempston also told The National that it is a positive sign to see artists and creators supporting independence as in nationalist history “this trend tends to permeate through to the wider population through the dissemination of their work”

A Tale of Two Unions documents the disappointment post-Brexit amongst the Scottish public, and the desire for independence.

The track was written by Kempston after he felt exasperated as an artist touring in the aftermath of Brexit. He wanted to highlight the “political and socio-economic issues facing Scottish society both today, and in recent history.”

He said: “I had wanted to highlight the inequity of the British Union within a song for a while and indeed, have done so in the past, albeit in a more subtle way, but the manner in which the Brexit referendum and the aftermath unfolded, both on a macro scale and on a more personal level – in terms of how it affects artists with a British passport touring the EU – infuriated and exasperated me to the point where I had no choice but to express those feelings in song.”

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With more than a decade of international touring behind him in 31 European countries,  plus Siberian Russia, Uzbekistan (the first Scottish artist to do so), Canada (seven tours) and New Zealand, Kempston has returned to Scotland from his tour in Europe, presenting the songs for the first time.

For the second half of the tour, Kempston was joined by Canadian fiddle player Bronwyn Claire Asha. The pair presented A Tale Of Two Unions in the Adelby Kirche in Flensburg, Germany.

The song includes the lines: “You took our North Sea Oil, you took Willie MacRae. Built Trident on our soil, closed down our industry,” and: “We’ll not stay subservient, the last part of your Empire, listen to your government, do whatever you require”.

Kempston said he believes it's part of a songwriter's job to "highlight where political injustices are being served”.

He said many audiences in Europe are oblivious, bemused and confused by the fact that Scotland must have consent from Westminster to host a referendum.

He added: “I personally believe songwriters, poets and artists should be at the heart of any political movement, and if we look back at recent history, for example at the fall of communism in Eastern Europe it was the artistic communities who were the driving forces behind the revolutions in these countries.

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"It's a hugely positive sign for Scottish independence that the vast majority of musicians and artists are in full support of the movement because as history has shown, this trend tends to permeate through to the wider population through the dissemination of their work."

The 13 songs all penned by Kempston feature Bob Miller, Lars "Rebbe" Rebbestad, Kirsty Miller, Rory MacDonald and Neil D Mart.

The album is released as a CD only for now, complete with lyrics booklet in a six-panel sleeve, and all copies purchased from the website shop will be signed by Kempston. Click here to visit his online store.