Marchioness of Tullibardine (The)

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MARCHIONESS OF TULLIBARDINE. AKA – "The Marchioness of Tullybardine." AKA and see "Burra Isle War Dance (The)." Scottish, Shetland; Pipe March. A Mixolydian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB (Skinner): AABC (MacDonald/Skye): AABBCCDD (Perlman): AABBCCDD' (Cranford/Holland). The Marchioness of Tullibardine is the title bestowed upon the wife of the eldest son of the Duke of Atholl, Perthshire, Scotland. Originally as a pipe march, although Cape Breton fiddlers sometimes play it as a reel, after the setting the Inverness Serenaders recorded on 78RPM disc (Cranford) in 1934. The tune is played in the Shetlands as the accompaniment to the Burra Isle War Dance [1], a solo tap dance, where it was set as a reel called "Burra Boys War Dance (The)" or "Burra Isle War Dance (The)."

The composer is variously given in bagpipe collections as "A. Duff" (by P.M. William Ross) and C. Duff (David Glen, Donald MacPhee, Scots Guards). David Glen's collection (Book 10, p. 1) gives the tune as "The Marchioness of Tullybardine's Welcome to Blair Castle" and says it was "comp'd by Chas. Duff, Donavourd, 1863" (Donavourd is in the neighborhood of Blair Atholl, the seat of the Marquis and Marchioness of Tullybardine). If that is the case, the march was written to honor Louisa Moncreiffe, daughter of Sir Thomas Moncreiffe, 7th Baronet, who married John Stewart-Murray, Marquess of Tullibardine, in 1863. They had four sons (of whom the eldest died in infancy) and three daughters (all of whom survived to adulthood). The Duchess of Atholl died in Italy in July 1902, aged 58.

A later Marchioness of Tullibardine, Kitty Ramsay, was graduate of the Royal College of Music and a gifted pianist. She also composed tunes—see "Scottish Horse (The)" in David Glen’s Edinburgh Collection (1904). Lady Tullibardine was a prominent anti-suffrage campaigner and vice-president of the Dundee branch of the Anti-Suffrage League. Later, as the Duchess of Atholl, she became Scotland’s first female MP.

Source for notated version: "From Miss F. Morison's Collection" (MacDonald/Skye); Dan McPhee (1920–1994, bred in Elmira, North-East Kings County, Prince Edward Island; late of Brantford, Ontario) [Perlman].

Printed sources: Cranford (Jerry Holland: The Second Collection), 2000; No. 7, p. 3. Logan's Collection of Highland Bagpipe Music, Book 2, c. 1902; No. 39, p. 24. MacDonald (The Skye Collection), 1887; p. 179. Perlman (The Fiddle Music of Prince Edward Island), 1996; p. 94. William Ross (Ross's Collection of Pipe Music), 1869; No. 1, p. 62. Skinner (Harp and Claymore), 1904; p. 41 (includes variation sets).

Recorded sources: Beltona BL1857, William (Will) Powrie (1932). Decca 14023 (78 RPM), Alick Gillis and His Inverness Serenaders (1934. Reel setting). HMV B3245 30-2005 BR 2632 II triangle (78 RPM), Pipe Major William Ross (1929). Rounder Records 7057, Jerry Holland – "Parlor Music" (2005).

See also listing at:
Alan Snyder's Cape Breton Fiddle Recording Index [2]
See Paul Cranford's Northside Cape Breton standard notation version [3]
Hear the march played by Pipe Major William "Willie" Ross at Rare Tunes [4] [5] (followed by "Highland Harry" (Strathspey) and the reel "Loch Carron").
Hear accordion player Will Powrie's 1932 recording at Rare Tunes [6] (followed by "93rd's Farewell to Edinburgh").
See J. Scott Skinner's 1887 manuscript copy at the Univ. of Abderdeen's Skinner site [7]




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