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DRUMDELGIE. AKA - "The Hash o' Drumdelgie." Scottish, Jig and Air. D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). ABB. Drumdelgie is a farm near Huntly, on the Banff-Aberdeenshire border, and is mentioned as early as 1642 (in extracts from the Presbytory book of Strathbogie). It grew, and by the mid-19th century it employed scores of workers and was one of the largest 'Farm Touns' in the North East of Scotland. Some 30 children from the farm attended the local school. The melody is from a "bothy" (bunkhouse) ballad, as it was called in the North East of Scotland, a genre composed as a source of entertainment. Various sets of lyrics have been set to the tune, and one of the best known ("The Hash o' Drumdelgie") tells of the hurry of work on the farm on a cold winter's morning. Another Scottish version begins:
Fare ye will Drumdelgie, for I maun gang awa,
Fare ye weel Drundelgie, yer weetie weather an a';
Fare ye weel drumdelgie, I bid ye a' adieu,
I leave ye as I foond ye, a damned unceevil crew.
An Irish version, sung by Clare tin whistle player and singer Micho Russell (d. 1994), begins:
Come all ye jolly plooman lads,
An' hearken untae me;
An' I'll sing ye Drumdelgie,
Wi' muckle mirth an' glee.
There is a toon in Cyarnie,
It's kent baith far an' wide;
Tae be the hash o' Drumdelgie,
Upon sweet Deveronside.
Russell's version is a derivative of the Scottish song, however, as Irish researcher Conor Ward points out, the tune is well known in Ireland, albeit the titles are varied and sometimes obscure, and include (among others): "Boys from Mullingar (The)," "Humors of Limerick (4) (The)," and "Soldier's Cloak (The)." An American march version is "Eden Quickstep."
Source for notated version:
Printed sources: Williamson (English, Welsh, Scottish and Irish Fiddle Tunes), 1976; p. 48.