Logan Water

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X:1 T:For ever, fortune, wilt thou prove T:Logan Water M:C| L:1/8 R:Air B:William Thomson - Orpheus Caledonius, vol. II (1733, No. 23, p. 97) B: https://digital.nls.uk/special-collections-of-printed-music/archive/91481654 N:Thomson (c. 1695-1753) was a Scottish singer and folk song collector N:who lived in London for most of his adult career. Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:Gdor GA|B2 AG G3B|FD CD F3F|B3A G3B|FG Bc d3d| _egf e d2 cB|cB AG F3A|GA Bc d>_ed c|B2 AG G2|| f2|g2G2 G3B|FD CD F3f|g2 G2 G3B|FG Bc d3d| _egf e d2 cB|cBA G F3 A|GAB c d>_ed c|B2 AG G2||



LOGAN WATER (Uisge Logain). AKA and see "Lausin Water". AKA – "For ever, fortune, wilt thou prove," "Logan Braes." Irish Scottish; Slow Air or March (4/4 time). G Dorian (Thomson): G Minor (O'Neill): A Minor (Cowdery, Martin, Miller, O'Farrell, Oswald): B Minor (Kerr, Thomson). Standard tuning (fiddle). AB (O'Neill, Thomson): AABB (Cowdery, Kerr, Martin, Miller, O'Farrell): AABBCCDD (Oswald). The Scottish Gazetteer gives "A stream in Eskdale, Dumfries and Galloway (south-west Scotland), the Logan Water rises in the hills to the south of the River Esk. It flows generally southwards to join the Wauchope Water which flows into the Esk."

Manuscript versions can be found in the MacFarlane Manuscript (c. 1740, No. 18), the work of Scottish dancing master and musician David Young, and, later, in the 1768 (James) Gillespie Manuscript of Perth. I was included in the McLean Collection, published by James Johnson in Edinburgh in 1772, in which it is ascribed (erroneously) to 18th century musician, composer and publisher, Robert Mackintosh. Penn State Professor Samuel Bayard (1981), thought the melody dated from the latter 17th century, and said it was often reprinted through the end of the 19th century, primarily as a song tune but also set as a march.

It turns out the tune is considerably older. Simpson (British Broadside Ballads) traces the tune back to the latter 1680's, when it was used as a tune for various broadsides, and he cites older occurrences. Their dating would seem correct, for it was in circulation enough to appear in a musician's manuscript book dated 1709 (Mrs. Crockat's Manuscript Book, according to Stenhouse). It was also printed that year in A Collection of the Choicest of the Scots Tunes Adapted for the Harpsichord or Spinnet and within the Compass of the Voice, Violin or German Flute by Adam Craig. Antiquity is suggested in many publications from the early 18th century, including Alexander Stuart's Musick for Allan Ramsey's Collection of Scots Songs, or Musick (Edinburgh, 1724, p. 56), Watt's Musical Miscellany (vol. 6, 1731), Thompson's Orpheus Caledonius (second volume, 1733, to the words of James Thomson's "For ever, Fortune, wilt thou prove"), and Davies' Calista (1731). In Ramsay's Tea Table Miscellany (1724) he directs a song, beginning "Tell me, Hamilla, tell me why," to be sung to "Logan Water." The melody was also employed in the period operas The Highland Fair, or the Union of the Clans (London, 1731), John Hippisley's Flora (London, 1729), Edward Philips' The Chamber-Maid (London, 1730), and Charles Johnson's The Village Opera (London, 1729).

Bayard believes it is possible that the Irish dance air "Poor Old Woman (1)" (TSeanbhean Bhocht (An)) and related tunes grew out of this air. The melody for the old Irish ballad "Boyne Water (1)" is the basis for the "Logan Water" melody, maintains Cowdery (1990), although the initial motif's of the "Boyne" tune appear to have been inverted; nevertheless, he concludes "the whole is a convincing, if unusual, relative." Irish collector Francis O'Neill concurred. In a 1906 letter to Alfred Percival Graves in 1906 (printed in "A Few Gossipy Notes" in the Journal of the Irish Folk Song Society, London, O'Neill wrote: "576 ("Logan Water") is a beautiful air, generally found among Scottish melodies. If of Scotch origin, I am satisfied it was composed by and Irish bard sojourning in the land of heather. Ward, in Songs of Scotland, says it is of considerable antiquity, but does not attempt to give its origin. The song of "Logan Water" was written int 1781, and soon after published in London." Whatever its provenance, many songs have been set to the melody, including poet Robert Burns' "Logan Braes" (1793).

Randy Miller (2004) labels the melody a "18th century New England fife tune," and, indeed, the melody appears in a number of American musicians manuscripts of the Revolutionary and Post-Revolutionary period, including the commonplace (manuscript) books of flute player Henry Beck (Connecticut, 1786), Jeremiah Brown (New Hampshire, 1782), Abel Shattuck (Massachusetts, 1801), Luther Kingsley (Connecticut, 1795), and Hervey Brooks (Connecticut, 1805). It is well-represented in American published works of the time as well, including Edward Riley's Flute Book, vol. 1 (New York, 1814), Daniel Steele's New and Complete Preceptor for the Fife (Albany, 1815), and Joseph Herrick's Instrumental Preceptor (Exeter, N.H., 1807). Beck appends "A Dead March" to the title, indicating that, at least occasionally, the melody was used as funerial accompaniment. As "Lausin Water" it was entered into the music copybook of American musician M.E. Eames, frontispiece dated Aug. 22nd, 1859 (p. 178).


Additional notes



Printed sources : - Bruce-Emmett (Drummer's and Fifer's Guide), 1880; p. 51. Cowdery (Melodic Tradition of Ireland), 1990; Ex. 47, p. 119. Crosby (Caledonian Musical Repository), 1811; p. 230. Gow (Vocal Melodies of Scotland), 1822; p. 4. Graham (Popular Songs of Scotland), 1908; pp. 116–117. Hulbert (Complete Fifer's Museum), 1811; p. 11 (appears as "Lausin Water"). Johnson (Scots Musical Museum, vol. 1), 1787; No. 42. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 3); No. 421, p. 47. Martin (Taigh na Teud), 1990; p. 17. McDonald (The Gesto Collection of Highland Music), 1895; p. 102 (appears as an untitled march). McGibbon (Collection of Scots Tunes), c. 1762; p. 21. Miller (Fiddler's Throne), 2004; No. 195, p. 123. O'Farrell (Pocket Companion, vol. 2), c. 1806; p. 132. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903; No. 576, p. 101. Oswald (Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. 5), 1760; p. 18. Oswald (Caledonian Pocket Companion, vol. 1), c. 1780; p. 150. Oswald (2nd Collection), 1742; p. 21 (?). Robinson (Massachusetts Collection of Martial Musick, vol. 2), p. 59 (appears as "The Boyne Water"). Smith (Scottish Minstrel, vol. 3), c. 1821; p. 16. Thompson (Orpheus Caledonius, vol. 2), 1733; No. 23, p. 97. Wilson (A Companion to the Ballroom), 1816; p. 131.


Recorded sources : - Green Linnet SIF 1047, John Cunningham – "Fair Warning" (1985). Aly Bain & Phil Cunningham – "The Ruby."

See also listing at :
Jane Keefer's Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [1]
See a standard notation transcription of the melody from David Young's MacFarlane Manuscript (c. 1740) [2]



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