Independence referendum: Big Country song use 'not approved'

Similar or not? Have a listen to both tunes used by the two separate campaigns

Rock band Big Country has said its song One Great Thing has been associated with independence referendum campaigning without its approval.

The Yes Scotland campaign said it had obtained copyright permission to use a new version of the track as its official theme.

And the Better Together group insisted the composition it used was "categorically not" the same song.

The two campaigns were launched ahead of a 2014 independence referendum.

A spokesman for Big Country's record label, Track Records, said it had not been consulted.

Big Country facts

  • One Great Thing was written by Big Country band members Stuart Adamson and Tony Butler.
  • It appeared on their 1986 album The Seer.
  • Adamson, died in 2001, but Butler remains in the band.
  • Big Country reformed in 2010 with former Alarm vocalist Mike Peters in the lead singer role.

The spokesman told BBC Scotland: "The band had no part in this and do not approve at all.

"They would never take sides where politics or religion are concerned."

The pro-independence Yes Scotland campaign, which launched last month, used a newly-produced version of the Dunfermline band's song.

The Better Together campaign, which got under way on Monday to make the case for keeping Scotland in the union, said the composition used in its launch film "was categorically not the same tune" as One Great Thing.

A campaign spokesman said the piece of music was a new track called Down Under, by Scottish DJ/Producer Munroso, which "neither samples, nor uses, nor is inspired by Big Country".

A Yes Scotland spokesman, said: "One Great Thing is a composition by Stuart Adamson and Tony Butler, which is published by EMI Music.

"EMI Music has licensed the Yes Campaign to use this composition for the duration of the campaign."

SNP MP Pete Wishart was a member of Big Country, before going on to find fame in celtic rock group Runrig.

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