Long Life to Stepmothers

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X:1 T:Long Life to Stepmothers M:2/4 L:1/8 Q:"Slow" B:Gow - Fourth Collection of Niel Gow's Reels (1800) Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:D {A}D{A}D {A}D{A}D|(B,/E/) TE/>C/ (D/F/) TF/A/|{A}D{A}D {A}D{A}D|(B,/E/) TE/>C/ D2:|| {^g}a {^g}a f/d/Td/>c/|B/e/e/>d/ (c/A/)d/f/|{^g}a {^g}a f/d/Td/>c/|(B/e/)e/>c/ {c}dD| {^g}a {^g}a f/d/Td/>c/|B/(e/4f/4) (g/4f/4).e/4.d/4 (c/A/)d/f/|(a/f/).d/.A/ (f/d/).A/.F/|(B/G/)(E/C/) {C}D2||



LONG LIFE TO STEPMOTHERS. Scottish, Slow Quickstep. D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. Composed by Nathaniel Gow (1766-1831) the title suggested by his family. His father, Niel Gow (1727-1807), married twice, firstly to Margaret Wiseman, with whom he had five sons and three daughters. She was born in 1730 and died between 1765 and 1768 (dated by the birth of their last son, Daniel, who died in infancy, and Niel's remarriage in 1768). Niel remarried to Margaret Urquhart of Perth in 1768, and, although they had no children of their own, they remained happily married until her death in 1805. As stepmother, she had affectionate relationships with all Niel's children by his first wife. Niel was deeply distressed by Margaret Urquhart's death and stopped playing for a time, until urged back to the fiddle by his family. When he picked it up again he composed the lovely "Niel Gow's Lament for the Death of His Second Wife." The tune was probably partly an answer to "Short Life to All Stepmothers," a strathspey by Malcolm MacDonald, appearing in his Fourth Collection (1797). Montrose dancing master and fiddler-composer Archibald Duff composed a tune called "Lang Life to Neil Gow" and Nathaniel may have had this in mind as well.

Additional notes

Source for notated version: -

Printed sources : - Carlin (Gow Collection), 1986; No. 573. Gow (Fourth Collection of Strathspey Dances), 2nd ed., originally 1800; p. 4.

Recorded sources: -



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