Scottish, scotch and caledonian


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19th March - RMA Colloquium at the University of Glasgow.
I talked about the blurred lines between Scottish music and music we perceive to be, or accept as Scottish. These are just a few slides to accompany my presentation.

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  • Porous borders are territorial borders with no rigid barriers.The term is usefully applicable to attempts to define what actually counts as Scottish music.
  • This collection ended up in our list because Andrew Wighton bought it for his personal collection in Broughty Ferry, 1864.Dundee Wighton H.53676 No title page, no clues. WHAT COULD IT BE?Wighton Database, “Dances, Marches, etc. A Collection of Scots and other Airs, with a bass for the harpsichord’” Attrib to pub Daniel Wright. Referred to in 5thed of Grove, Irish music. Goes back to Kidson.Gore Scottish Music Index (formerly Fiddle index) perpetuates link to Wright. “A collection of Scots, Irish & other airs. No title. c.1735, 26 pp.”
  • I found it had been mentioned in passing by Sara-Anne Churchill, in her Toronto PhD dissertation, ‘The tradition of transcription: Handel Aria Arrangements in the Fifth book of the Lady’s Banquet.’ As it stands, it’s a copy of the 2nd ed. of the Fourth book, dating 1734.What the Lady’s Banquet was.What had it been before? The odd numbering of the pieces was still unexplained.
  • Searched EASMES (Early American Secular Music and its Early European Sources)John Walsh – Thirty New and Choice Country Dances 2/10/1731, and A Second Collection of Thirty New and Choice … 20/5/1732So the reason it ended up in Wighton’s collection and in our list was actually simply the fact that the second collection included ‘Scotch’ tunes, amongst others.
  • John Ramsay of Ochtertyre – essay in Patrick Macdonald’s Highland Vocal Airs (1784)Tunes from that source; also from Bremner, A Collection of Scots Reels or Country Dances;Also ballad operas eg Beggar’s Opera, Gentle Shepherd.
  • Matching collection – another Celtic muse. Again, used recent authority – Walker, Historical Memoirs of the Irish Bards, 1786.The Thompsons also published much Vauxhall Gardens material (London pleasure gardens) including plenty of ‘Anglo-Scottish’ Jockey and Jenny songs and a book of Thirty Favourite Scots songs quite different from Bremner’s own book of Thirty Scots Songs. The Thompson’s – compared to Bremner’s TTM influenced collection.
  • The boundary between Scottish and English music perfectly fits the geographic definition of a ‘porous boundary’. Distinctions can be very blurred.When Scottish music found its way down to London, it could be repurposed, repackaged, or even supplanted by Scottish-inspired English material. It could retain its original purpose (dance music), or lose its original function and end up as something else – a young ladies’ easy piano collection. Demonstrates how popular the music was. It is easy glibly to dismiss Scottish music published in England as ‘Anglo-Scottish’, or ‘Grub Street’ material.However, careful examination of such material shows a more complex pattern, where borrowings could be surreptitious or overt, truly of Scottish origin or of English manufacture.
  • Scottish, scotch and caledonian

    1. 1. Scottish, Scotch and Caledonian The Many Shades of Scottish Music Karen McAulay Postdoctoral Researcher, Bass Culture Project
    2. 2. Porous Borders Scottish Smudged Anglo Scottish
    3. 3. Documenting the Collections
    4. 4. GB-DU H.53676 page 4
    5. 5. GB-DU H.53676 page 5
    6. 6. GB-DU H.53676 page 6
    7. 7. Celtic Connections!
    8. 8. Caledonian Muse, 1790
    9. 9. Hibernian Muse, 1790 •
    10. 10. Scots or Anglo Scottish Image (archaeologist, Stanford University)