Killiecrankie (1)

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X:1 T:Keele Cranke M:C| L:1/8 N:Also in Henry Atkinson's ms. (1694) B:Henry Playford - A Collection of Original Scotch-Tunes, (Full of the B:Highland Humours) for the violin (London, 1700, No. 6, p. 3) N:"Most of them being in the Compass of the Flute." Z:AK/FIddler's Companion K:C EF|G3A G2EF|G3A G2EF|GFED CDEF|G4 G4| A2B A2G2|c3B A2G2|c3d edcB|A4 A2 ef| g2e2g2c2|d2c2d2e2|c2A2c2E2|G4 G3B| A4c4|d3c d2e2|c2A2c3E|D4 C2 ef| gfga g2 ef|gfga g2 ef|gfed cdef|g4 g4| a3b a2g2|c'3b a2g2|agfe defg|a4 a2G2| cBcd edef|gfga g2 fe|d2c2B2A2|G4 G3A| A4c4|d3c d2e2|(cA3) c3E|D4 C2||



KILLIECRANKIE [1]. AKA - "Gilly Crankie," "Keele Cranke," "Killycrankie," "Killiekrankie." AKA and see "Giolla," "Planxty Davis." Scottish, Air and Slow March (cut time). D Major (Aird, Köhler's, O'Farrell, Wright): C Major (most versions). Standard tuning (fiddle) One part (Sharp): AB (Johnson, Perlman, Wright): AABB (Aird): AABBCCDD (O'Farrell). O'Farrell (c. 1806) directs: "Slow." There appear to be two main versions of "Killiecrankie" tunes, according to Paul Roberts (who has written modern, definitive notes on the tune), a Lowland/Williamite version and a Gaelic/Jacobite one; in this index "Killiecrankie [1]" describes the Lowland version, as printed by James Aird, the Gows, and in the Northumbrian Bewick's Pipe Tunes. "Killiecranke (2)" describes the Gaelic/Jacobite version. Allison Kinnaird (The Harp Key, Kinmor Music, Shillinghill, Temple, Midlothian, Scotland, 1986) remarks that "Killiecrankie" "has a very mixed musical pedigree" and is of the opinion it is related to one degree or another with many tunes going back to the early 17th century. She believes it relates to the English melodies "Clean Country Way," "Gilderoy (1)" and the "Miller of Dee," and the Irish "Star of the County Down" and the Irish Gaelic song "Gleanntan Araiglin Aobhinn."

The title commemorates the famous Battle of Killiecrankie, Perthshire, in 1689 between the Highland forces led by Claverhouse in support of the Catholic King James II, and the Protestant Major-General Hugh Mackay, leader of the army of William III (although composed primarily of Lowland Scots). Although the Jacobites won the day they ultimately lost the war, while Claverhouse himself perished in the battle. The name Killiecrankie is derived from the Gaelic root word coille, meaning a wood, coupled with 'crankie,' which refers to aspens; thus the phrase means 'wood of the aspens' (Matthews, 1972). Johnson (1983) states it was later renamed after another (different) battle called Tranent Muir, East Lothian, fought in 1745 {which battle is usually known as the Battle of Prestonpans}. He suggests on stylistic reasons that the tune may be the surviving opening for a battle pibroch (see "Highland Battle, A"), although no other parts have come down. The tune, as "Keel Cranke" was published by Henry Playford in his 1700 collection of Scottish tunes (Original Scots Tunes), however, the earliest printing of the song appears to be in the Leyden Manuscript of c. 1692, according to John Glen (Early Scottish Melodies). Glen further states: "That portion of ("Killiecrankie") which is sung to the chorus is still more ancient; it forms part of the tune called "My Mistres blush is bonny" (sic) in the Skene Manuscripts" (c. 1615). Glen dates the Leyden Manuscript by its inclusion of tunes referring to 'King James March to Ireland' and the "Watter (sic) of the Boyne," a reference to the Jacobite Wars. As "Irish Gillycranky (The)" it is included in the Henry Atkinson manuscript of 1694/95. "Killiecrankie" was set for violin and continuo by William MacGibbon (1695-1756), and was printed by Oswald in his Caledonian Pocket Companion.

There is some confusion in the literature with "Killiecrankie" and "Planxty Davis." For example, the Gow printing has been called in print a version of "Planxty Davis." Kinnaird (1986) believes the "Planxty Davis" title became attached to the tune by mistake, belonging instead probably to a tune for which O'Carolan wrote the words "Two William Davises (The)." Kinnaird's own version was learned from a Cape Breton fiddle player named Gillies, who maintained that the Nova Scota traditional music where he lived was descended from that of the old harpers, and, while Kinnaird placed no particular veracity on the assertion, it did indicate to her the value Nova Scotians placed on keeping musical tradition alive. Modern Cape Breton fiddlers (like Mike MacDougall and Jerry Holland) play the tune in the key of C Major.


Additional notes
Source for notated version : - James Thomson Manuscript, p. 20 [Johnson]; Peter Chaisson (b. 1942, Bear River, North-East Kings County, Prince Edward Island) [Perlman].

Printed sources : - Aird (Selections of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, vol. 2), 1782; No. 18, p. 7 (appears as "Killycrankie"). Gow (Complete Repository, Part First), 1799; p. 7 (appears as "The Original Sett of Killecrankie"). Gow (Collection). Johnson (Scottish Fiddle Music in the 18th Century), 1984; No. 6, p. 24. Köhler’s Violin Repository, Book 2, 1881-1885; p. 161. McGibbon (Scots Tunes, book II), c. 1746; p. 37 (appears as "Gilliecrankie"). O'Farrell (Pocket Companion, vol. II), c. 1806; pp. 102-103 (appears As "Killecrankie with Variations"). Oswald (Caledonian Pocket Companion Book 3), 1760; p. 26 (as "Gilly Crankie"). Perlman (The Fiddle Music of Prince Edward Island), 1996; p. 210. Playford (A Collection of Original Scotch Tunes), 1700; No. 6, p. 3. Sharp (Country Dance Tunes), 1909; p. 62. Daniel Wright (Aria di Camera), London, 1727; No. 50.

Recorded sources : - Cape Breton's Magazine, Mike MacDougall - "Tape for Father Hector" (1985). Rounder 82161-7032-2, Bill Lamey - "From Cape Breton to Boston and Back: Classic House Sessions of Traditional Cape Breton Music 1956-1977" (2000).

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



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