William Jackson - Gut-strung Harp, Wire-strung Harp, Whistles, Laud and Piano
Mackenzie: Eilidh, Gillian, Fiona - Vocals
James MacIntosh - Highland Pipes, Small Pipes
Tony McManus - Guitars
Aidan O'Rourke - Fiddle
Ian Lowthian - Accordian
Calum Malcolm - Bass and Keyboards
St.Kilda wedding, A St.Kilda dance.
Both tunes come from the remote Atlantic archipelago of St. Kilda, far off Scotland’s West Coast. The second tune is also known as Tha Giullan agam fhin.
Anna Bheag (Wee Anna)
A traditional song from the Isle of Skye, Anna Bheag, like hundreds of other traditional Gaelic songs of this genre, was used in the process of waulking the tweed. This particular song deals with a common theme of finding a suitable love match for the Anna in question.
MacPhee’s Reel [composer unknown]
Marion and Donald [trad]
Tail Toddle [trad]
Three pipe reels. MacPhee’s is generally associated with the Glasgow-based composer and pipe-maker Donald MacPhee, who published a major collection of music in 1876 called A Selection of Music for the Highland Bagpipe. Tail Toddle is a pipe setting of the well-known (and bawdy) song of the same name.
Ba Mo Leanabh (O My Baby)
The Mackenzies first heard this less well-known version of a traditional song from the Canadian singer Mary Jane Lamond. The story surrounds the execution of the Clan Chief MacGregor of Glenstrae in 1570 when his widow composed and sang this lullaby lament to her child. There exist several versions of this song, more commonly heard as Griogal Cridhe (Beloved Gregor).
Barbara’s Jig [arr Duncan Johnstone]
Kenny MacDonald’s Jig [Norman MacDonald]
Joseph MacDonald’s Jig [composer unknown]
Three Highland pipe jigs. Joseph MacDonald’s Jig is one of the oldest recorded tunes of this type, appearing as it does in the famous Patrick McDonald Collection (the Highland Vocal Airs), published in 1784. Joseph MacDonald was a Durness man who died in his early 20s while working in India for the East India Company. He has gone down in piping history as the first person to attempt a systematic notation of pipe music on the stave, in his Compleat Theory of the Scots Highland Bagpipe, compiled in 1760.
A Fisherman’s Song for attracting Seals
This tune is also known by the name Maol Domhnaich, which is a small island off the south of Barra.
Blue Ribbon, Scottish measure.
This tune is from a Neil Gow collection, and is described as a Strathspey.
The Battle of Waterloo [arr Donald Macleod]
The Wee Highland Laddie [arr Donald MacLeod] Two marches, arranged and popularised by the famous Lewis piper Donald MacLeod.
Two highly unusual tunes from the Rev Patrick McDonald’s Highland Vocal Airs, published in 1784. This collection of song airs and dance tunes was one of the first to present Highland music in its purest form, free from complex and often unsuitable ‘drawing room’ arrangements.
The Mermaid’s Song
A pipe arrangement of the famous Gaelic song Oran na Maighdinn-Mhara. Legend has it that the song was composed by a mermaid, moved to leave her family in order to follow the free-flow of the tides.
Chaidh mi’n traigh a deanamh maoraich / co bheir mi leam
Both traditional, these songs were used to aid rhythm and purpose while engaged in the lengthy process of waulking the tweed. The second song was traditionally used in the later part of the waulking process when the workers clapped the tweed and this lightening of spirit is reflected in the text where declaration of love for someone in particular is encouraged.
Rory Dall’s Sister’s Lament
An old harp tune found in both Scottish and Irish collections. Attributed to the blind Harper of Dunvegan, Rory Dall Morrison.
Iain Ruaidh’s Lament (Tuireadh Iain Ruiadh)
An old Gaelic air.
Looking south over the Border
This is a piece composed by the accordionist Ian Lowthian.