Miss Wharton Duff

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MISS WHARTON DUFF. Scottish "marching air" (Alasdair Fraser's description). B Flat Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. Composed by William Marshall (1748-1833). According to Moyra Cowie (The Life and Times of William Marshall, 1999), the tune may refer to Lady Ann Wharton Duff, who married her first cousin, Richard Wharton of Orton House near Inchberry in lower Spey side. Ann was a daughter of Lord Duff of Banff. The Wharton Duffs, who married in 1809, also had three daughters, and thus the tune may have been composed for one of them.

The tune is sometimes heard transposed to the key of G major at Scottish sessions, and has been played as a wedding march.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Alburger (Scottish Fiddlers and Their Music), 1983; Ex. 57, p. 86. Hunter (Fiddle Music of Scotland), 1988; No. 56 (arranged by James Hunter). Marshall, Fiddlecase Edition, 1978; 1822 Collection, p. 6.

Recorded sources: Brownigg LP BRG 009, Alasdair Fraser - "Portrait of a Scottish Fiddler" (1984), Rounder CD 11661-7033-2, Natalie MacMaster – “My Roots are Showing” (2000). Topic 12TS424, Jock Tamson’s Bairns (1982), Iona LP IR 011, Tony Cuffe - "When First I Went to Caledonia" (1988).

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