Haggis (The)

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X:1 T:Haggis, The C:Captain Fraser M:C L:1/8 B: Joseph Lowe - Lowe's Collection of Reels, Strathspeys and Jigs, B:book 3 (1844–1845, p. 12) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:C F|(E/F/G) Gc (GE)EF|(E/F/G) GB c2 ce|(E/F/G) Gc (Gc)GE|1D/D/D _BD F2 FD:|2 D/D/D _BD F2 Ff|| ecgc eccf|ecgc f2 (fa)|ecgc acgc|d/d/d (_Bd) f2 (fa)| ecgc eccf|ecge fagf|ecdB cAGE|D/D/D (_BD) F2 FD||



HAGGIS, THE. AKA and see "Lady Helen Wedderburn." Scottish, (Pipe) Reel (whole time). C Major (most versions): D Major (Johnson). Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB (Fraser, Johnson, Lowe, Skye): AABB (Cranford/Fitzgerald): AABB' (Kerr). Composition of this double-tonic tune is credited to Captain Simon Fraser by MacDonald in his Skye Collection (1887), and the melody does appear in Fraser's 1816 volume. A haggis is a large Scottish pudding made of the heart, lungs and liver of a sheep, along with suet, onions, oatmeal and seasoning, stuffed into a sheep's stomach and the whole boiled. It is traditional around the New Year. "This is an admirable one of the pipe reels, so often mentioned, wherein the piper compares his bag and chanter to a well stuffed haggis with its pin. Burns, having taken up so many of the same ideas in his excellent poem to a haggis, may have heard the meaning conveyed by the words, though his genius was so original and capacious, that this is mere conjecture" (Fraser). The melody frequently has been recorded by Cape Breton fiddlers.

Some eight years after Fraser published the reel, fiddler-composer Duncan McKercher included the tune in his collection under the title "Lady Helen Wedderburn," setting it in the key of 'D'. See also Fraser's slip jig version, "What care I for the Minister?."


Additional notes
Source for notated version : - Winston Fitzgerald (1914-1987, Cape Breton) [Cranford].

Printed sources : - Cranford (Winston Fitzgerald), 1997; No. 118, p. 48. Fraser (The Airs and Melodies Peculiar to the Highlands of Scotland and the Isles), 1816/1874; No. 43, p. 15. Johnson (Airs and Melodies of Scotland's Past), vol. 10, 1992 (revised 2001); p. 6. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 2), c. 1880's; No. 77, p. 11. Joseph Lowe (Lowe's Collection of Reels, Strathspeys and Jigs, book 3), 1844–1845; p. 12. MacDonald (The Skye Collection), 1887; p. 109. Stewart-Robertson (The Athole Collection), 1884; p. 62.

Recorded sources : - Breton Books and Records BOC 1HO, Winston "Scotty" Fitzgerald - "Classic Cuts" (reissue of Celtic Records CX 40). Green Linnet SIF 1077, Capercaillie - "Crosswinds" (1987). Rounder 7001, Joe Cormier - "Scottish Violin Music from Cape Breton Island" (1974).

See also listing at :
Alan Snyder's Cape Breton Fiddle Recording Index [1]
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [2]



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