Green Hills of Tyrol (1) (The)
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GREEN HILLS OF TYROL , THE. AKA and see "Cinderella Waltz." Scottish, English, New England; Air, Waltz. England, Shropshire. G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). One part (Kennedy): AABB (Ashman): AABC (Kerr). The melody is from the opera William Tell (1829) by Rossini. "Green Hills..." entered British army tradition when it was set for pipes by Pipe Major John MacLeod of the 93rd regiment (Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders) during the Crimean War. The army had been joined by a contingent from Sardinia--modern Italy-- which included a magnificent military band that MacLeod heard one night playing selections from the ballet music of Rossini's opera. Thus it was that an Austrian folk tune first heard played by an Italian band in Russia entered Scottish ballad repertoire as the 'Scottish Soldier'. Lyrics to the song begin:
Ther wis a sodger, a Scottish sodger
Wha wandert far awa an sodgert far awa
Ther wis nane bolder, wi guid broad shoulders
He fecht in monie a fray an fecht an won
He's seen th glory, he's telt th story
O battles glorious an deeds victorious
But noo he's sighin, his heart is cryin
Tae lea these green hills o Tyrol
Acause these green hills are no Hielan hills
Or th Islans hills, they're no ma lands hills,
As fair as these green foreign hills may be
They are no th hills o hame
Source for notated version: a c. 1837-1840 MS by Shropshire musician John Moore [Ashman].
Printed sources: Ashman (The Ironbridge Hornpipe), 1991; No. 58, p. 23. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 1), c. 1880; No. 9, p. 51. Kennedy (Fiddlers Tune Book, vol. 2); No. or p. 29.
Recorded sources: F&W Records 5, Canterbury Country Orchestra--"Mistwold."