Mhairead Òg (A)

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MHAIREAD OG, A (Young Margaret). AKA and see "Oran An Amadain Bhoidheich" (Song of the Handsome Fool). Scottish, Air (3/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AA. The Scots Gaelic words, which may have been the composition of Domhnall Donn (Brown Donald), relate a tale common in folklore of a young man who inadvertently kills his sweetheart while she is bathing, mistaking her for a duck. A similar story, notes Neil, is the basis for the ballet "Swan Lake." The lyric begins:

A Mhairead òg, 's tu rinn mo leon
Gur cailean bhòidheach lurach thu
Gur guirme do sùil a' mhadainn chiùin
An dearc air chùl nan duilleagan

Young Margaret, you are the cause of my wound
Beautiful, lovely girl.
Your eye is bluer in the calm morning
Than the blueberry behind its leaves.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Kennedy-Fraser (Songs of the Hebrides), 1909; p. 76. Neil (The Scots Fiddle), 1991; No. 154, p. 199.

Recorded sources: Mairi MacInnes - "Causeway." Alyth McCormack's - "An Iomall." Donnie Munro - "Heart of America." Greentrax Records, Donnie Munro - "Music and Song From Scotland" (2011).




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