Boatie Rows (The)

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BOATIE ROWS, THE. AKA and see "Keel Row (The)," "Weel May the Boatie Row." Scottish, English; Reel, Strathspey, and Highland Schottische. D Major (Raven): G Major (Cole/Ryan): A Major (Kerr). Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The melody was entered into the 1780 music manuscript collection of musician John Fife, who may have been from Perthshire, and who may have also complied his manuscript at sea (as there are references to battles in the Carribean and Mediteranean seas). The melody also appears as the 3rd setting of the song "Boatie Rows" in Johnson's Scots Musical Museum, vol. 5 (1797). The words to the song begin:

O weel-may the boatie row,
And better may she speed;
And leesome may the boatie row,
That wins the bairns bread;
The boatie rows, the boatie rows,
The boatied rows indeed;
And weel may the boatie row,
That win my bairns bread.
O weel may the boatie row,
And better my she speed;
And leesome may the boatie row,
That wins my bairns bread.

See note for "Weel May the Boatie Row" for more.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Aird (Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, vol. 5), Glasgow, 1801; No. 163, p. 61. Cole (1000 Fiddle Tunes), 1940, p. 127 (Strathspey). Johnson (Scots Musical Museum, vol. 5), 1797; Song 497, pp. 438-439. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 3), c. 1880's; No. 211, p. 24 (Highland Schottische). Raven (English Country Dance Tunes), 1984; p. 150 (Reel setting). Ryan's Mammoth Collection, 1883; p. 167.

Recorded sources:




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