Tributes have been paid to Iain Mackay, one of Gaeldom’s most highly-acclaimed singers, who has died.
The 78-year-old was born and raised in Upper Bayble in Point in Lewis.
Deeply rooted in the language and its culture, he favoured the traditional style of Gaelic singing, unaccompanied by any musical instrument.
His lifelong association with Gaelic singing started as a very young boy, later competing at National Mòds with Lochs Choir.
Standing out as a superb soloist, he won a medal in 1966 at the local Mòd in Lewis.
At the 1972 National Mòd in Inverness, he clinched the Traditional Gold Medal, just one year after the competition was introduced.
He also represented Scotland at the Pan Celtic Festival in Ireland, winning the Traditional Solo Singing competition.
In his day job, Iain Mackay repaired vehicles, employed as a mechanic at the Co-op garage in Stornoway at a time the supermarket firm ran a fleet of mobile grocery shops across the island. When that era passed, he set up his own workshop in the town.
Many a time tuning up engines was set aside as immense demand for his singing talents called him to virtually every inhabited island on the west coast. Always a crowd puller at annual gatherings of Gaels exiled on the mainland, organisers of concerts and cèilidhs clamoured for his presence.
Whether in the grand surroundings of Celtic Connections in Glasgow, a village hall on Tiree or the Dark Island Hotel in Benbecula, his rich, melodious voice enthralled every audience.
Lochs Gaelic Choir paid a warm tribute in a message: “We were sad to hear about Iain Mackay passing away. He was a former member of the choir, as was his wife Dollag.
“It’s hard to put thoughts into words; so many memories, so many laughs, and so many songs. All our sympathy to those who are grieving just now.”
Glasgow Lewis and Harris Association said: “Iain had such an incredible voice and wonderful personality – a real loss for Gaelic traditional singing.”
An Comunn Gàidhealach, organisers of the Royal National Mod said: “We were saddened to learn of the death of a dear friend, Iain Mackay, who passed away at the age of 78.
“Iain was one of the greatest and most renowned Gaelic singers of all time.
“He brought great joy to us all over the years with his wonderful singing voice.
“Our thoughts are with Iain’s wife Dollag and family and friends at this sad time. He will be greatly missed.”
Iain Mackay died on Thursday. He was buried in Aignish Cemetery in his home district of Point on Saturday.