Lads wi' the Kilts (The)

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LADS WI' THE KILTS, THE. AKA – "Gillean an fhèilidh," "Gillibh na fela," "Gullun an èilidh." Scottish; Air, (Pipe) March (6/8 time). A Minor (Dow, Rook): D Major (Gunn, Kerr, Ross). Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (Rook): AAB (Ross): AABB. The Scots Gaelic refrain (from the singing of William Matheson) goes:

O Soiridh o slàn horó guma fallain dhuibh
Soiridh o slàn do ghillean an fhèilidh
Soiridh o slàn horó guma fallain dhuibh
Soiridh o slàn do ghillean an fhèilidh.

Angus J. MacDonald (see From the Farthest Hebrides, Donald Ferguson ed., 1978) dates this song text to about the 1790s and notes, "The author of this song was John son of Ewen the Herdsman, the Honey Dell, Hoghearraidh, North Uist.” The earliest printing of the tune is in Donald Dow's c. 1776 collection. Pipe march versions of the tune are later variants.

Editor James Davie used the march is his programmatic piece "A Highland Battle" or "Siege of Kildrummie," dedicated to the Scottish hero William Wallace (Davie's Caledonian Repository, 1829). "Lads wi' the Kilts" has been a favorite regimental march of several British units with Highland associations.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Aird (Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, vol. 6), c. 1802; No. 102, p. 39. Davie (Davie’s Caledonian Repository), Aberdeen, 1829-30; p. 1. Dow (Collection of Ancient Scots Music), c. 1776; p. 23. Elizabeth Ross Manuscript, 1812; No. 3. William Gunn (Caledonian Repository of Music Adapted for the Bagpipes), Glasgow, 1848; p. 84. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 4), c. 1880's; No. 246, p. 27. William Ross (Collection [of] Pipe Music), 1869; No. 96, p. 95.

Recorded sources:




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