They sound so bonnie, but drums are too loud for some Sons’ fans

Mon the Sons. Drummer boys join the ranks but may be just a bit too loud for older fans at the Rock Stadium in Dumbarton.

By Bill Heaney

Dumbarton Football Club may not have the biggest support in the First Division – but they will soon have one of the loudest.

This emerged on Friday when one of the Sons’ oldest and most loyal fans, businessman Robert Ryan, posted this on social media: “I’m officially at the age where I hate loud and unnecessary noise, drums at football matches especially.”

Robert, who is himself a musician and plays in a band, mildly upset young Sons’ fans’ parents who thought he might merit being drummed out of the Brownies.

Vicky McKinley said her son and his friends all got Dumbarton season tickets for Christmas – “and they have a drum to play.”

Robert Ryan replied jokingly: “They can have my season ticket Vicky!”

But Vicky made it clear she was making a serious point.

She said there were around 20 youngsters “all very enthusiastic, all Celtic and Rangers fans, who have decided to embrace their local club.”

Robert said that was okay then – “That’s great. I’ll bring my earplugs!”

Retired school teacher, Ian McLean, chimed in: “I live a couple hundred metres from the stadium and I can hear the drum.

“[It’s] very annoying and anti-social: what it must be like in the [grand]stand doesn’t bear thinking [about]! Totally thoughtless behaviour.”

But Sharon Murphy was not amused: “At least they are going to support their local football club, and not sitting in their house like an old grouch!! Live and let live …”

Sharon added: “Imagine complaining about harmless 12 year olds supporting their local team.

“Believe me, a better bunch of children you could not find. I’m disappointed. You should join in the fun, I bet you would if you were still 12!”

She then posted a series of films from You Tube showing fans from different clubs and different nations across the world from Iceland to Derby County.

“Mon the drum,” she posted.

More seriously, Sharon added: “[It is] better than them being stuck in their house plugged into the matrix or out causing grief like other kids.

“I’m delighted they have created a little fan base. Their purchase of season books, scarfs, strips, food and drink each week, plus encouraging their friends to come will financially help the club, which it needs.

“They are 12 and excited and as this is new, it will settle down. This should be encouraged not criticised.

“There is about 30-odd of this age group now following the team. This is something Dumbarton FC needs for its sustainability as a club.”

Robert Ryan replied: “Good luck to the young fans and I’m pleased they’ve picked the Sons instead of the alternatives. I just wish a drum(s) wasn’t part of the package.”

Sharon joked: “I’ll investigate quiet drum purchases. It is a bit of a tinny one.”

Dumbarton’s drums may be loud but, according to the song about them, they are “bonnie” and remind Sons and Daughters of the Rock of their old home town.

And just in case you don’t know the words and you would like to sing Dumbarton’s Drums at the Bells on Hogmanay, here they are:

Dumbarton’s Drums


Dumbarton’s drums they sound sae bonnie 
And they remind me o’ my Johnnie, 
Such fond delight doth steal upon me 
When Johnnie kneels and kisses me.

Across the fields o’ boundin’ heather 
Dumbarton tolls the hour of pleasure, 
A song of love that’s without measure 
When Johnnie sings his sangs tae me.


‘Tis he alone that can delight me 
His rovin’ eye, it doth invite me, 
And when his tender arms enfold me 
The blackest night doth turn and flee. 


My Johnnie is a handsome laddie 
And though he is Dumbarton’s caddie, 
Some day I’ll be a captain’s lady 
When Johnnie tends his vows tae me. 

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