Annotation:Ayrshire Lasses (2)

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X:1 T:Airshire Lasses, The M:C L:1/16 R:Strathspey B:William Campbell – “Book 16th of Strathspey Reels, Waltz’s & Irish Jigs for the B:Harp, Piano-Forte & Violin, with their Proper Figures, as Danced at Court, B:Bath, Williss’s, & Hanover Square Rooms” (Soho, London, 1801, p. 14) F: Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:C V:1 Gc3 Ec3 d3cd2d2|e3de3d c2A2 A4|Gc3Ec3 d3cd2e2|cA3 G3F EC3 C4:| {ef}ge3c3g eg3cg3|{ef}ge3 ce3 d2D2D4|{ef}ge3 cg3 eg3 cg3|cA3 G3F EC3 C4| {ef}ge3 cg3 e3g c2g2|{ef}ge3 cg3 d2D2 D2ef|ge3 ce3 d3c d3e|cA3 G3F E2C2 C4|| V:2 clef = bass [C,,4C,4][C,,4C,4][G,,4G,4][G,,4G,4] |E,4E,4F,4F,4|[C,,4C,4][C,,4C,4][G,,4G,4][G,,4G,4] |F,4E,4C,4C,,4:| [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4]|C,4C,4 B,4 [G,,4G,4]| [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4]|F,4G,4C4C,4| [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4] [C,4C4]| [C,4C4] [C,4C4] B,4G,4|C,4C4G,4G,,4|F,4E,4[C,,4C,4][C,,4C,4]||

AYRSHIRE LASSES [2]. AKA - "Airshire Lasses." AKA and see "Ereshire Lasses (The)." Scottish, Strathspey (whole time). C Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (Surenne): AAB (most versions). "Ayrshie Lasses [2]" was composed by wikipedia:Hugh_Montgomerie,_12th_Earl_of_Eglinton (1739-1819).

Hugh Montgomerie, 12th Earl of Eglinton

He was a Scottish peer, politician, musician and composer, and was a member of Parliament for Ayrshire for 16 years, after which, in 1796, he became Lord-Lieutenant for Ayrshire. Mongomerie was one of the backers of the partially built Glasgow, Paisley and Ardrossan Canal, which facilitated shipping to the Scottish interior. Montgomerie fought in the American wars of the latter 18th century and was had a reputation for being a fine cellist and fiddler, and an exponent of the national music (Emmerson, 1971). As MP he would have wanted to promote Ayrshire, and so added yet another tune title extolling the "beauties" of one region or another. Perhaps there was some merit to this particular affection, however, for Robert Burns mentioned the town of Ayr in "Tam o'Shanter:"

Auld Ayr, wham ne'er a town surpasses
For honest men and bonny lasses.

A version of the reel can be found under the title "Ereshire Lasses (The)" in the music manuscripts of the Gunn family of County Fermanagh (see The Gunn Book). Compare also with "Kiss Me Sweetly," first printed by Robert Bremner around 1757. The melodies are generally melodically and harmonically similar, differing only in detail though alike enough to suggest that Montgomerie's tune may have been "informed" by the older reel. See also Annotation:Lord Montgomerie and "Eglinton Castle."

Additional notes

Printed sources : - Anderson (Anderson's Budget of Strathspeys, Reels & Country Dances), c. 1820; p. 2. William Campbell (Book 16th of Strathspey Reels, Waltz’s & Irish Jigs for the Harp, Piano-Forte & Violin, with their Proper Figures, as Danced at Court, Bath, Williss’s, & Hanover Square Rooms), Soho, London, 1801; p. 14. Gow (Complete Repository, Part 4), 1817; p. 31. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 2), c. 1880's; No. 74, p. 11. Joseph Lowe (Lowe's Collection of Reels, Strathspeys and Jigs, book 2), 1844–1845; p. 16. MacDonald (The Skye Collection), 1887; p. 112. Stewart-Robertson (The Athole Collection), 1884. Surenne (Dance Music of Scotland), 1852; pp. 24-25.

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