Miss Charlotte Alston Stewart's
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MISS CHARLOTTE ALSTON STEWART’S. Scottish, Canadian; Reel. Canada, Cape Breton. A Mixolydian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. A popular tune among Cape Breton fiddlers, and frequently recorded. The tune, originally a pipe reel, appears in Duncan McKercher’s Collection (vol. III, c. 1830), David Glen’s bagpipe Tutor (Book II, 1876-1901) and Barry Shears’ Gathering of the Clans Collection (Halifax, 1991). Shears attributes it to Duncan McKerchar. Dunlay and Greenberg (1996) find the first part of the tune the same as the second part of the reel “Thailer a bha Me Sherridh is Feader a Thuair Me” (A Tailor I was Seeking and Weaver that I Got) in Ross’s Collection of Pipe Music (1885).
The title honors Charlotte Alston Stewart, who married Major John Alston of the 63rd Regiment in 1803. Charlotte was the inheritor of the estate of Urrad House, Killiecrankie, Perthshire. The couple had a son and seven daughters, one of whom was named Charlotte, who lived with her sister Christina in Killiecrankie Cottage, Perthshire. See note for "Miss Alston Stewart of Urrad's Reel" for more on the Alston Stewarts and Urrad House.
Source for notated version: Donald Angus Beaton (Mabou, Cape Breton) [Dunlay & Greenberg].
Printed sources: Dunlay & Greenberg (Traditional Celtic Violin Music from Cape Breton), 1996; p. 51. Duncan McKercher (A Collection of Original Stathspeys and Reels), Edinburgh, c. 1830; p. 5. Shears (Gathering of the Clans Collection), 1986; p. 62.
Recorded sources: AMI 92, Ashley MacIssac - “Close to the Floor” (1992. Appears as “A Pipe Tune”). DAB-3, 26-1 Kinnon Beaton - “Cape Breton Fiddle 1" (1982. Appears as “Traditional Reel”). DAB4-1985, Donald Angus Beaton - “A Musical Legacy” (1985. Appears as “Traditional Reel” after “Sheep Shanks”). GSR 076, Tracey Dares - “Crooked Lake” (1995). Ingold 2001-4, Jerry Holland and Dave MacIssac - “Lantern Burn” (1990's). Rounder 7006, Theresa MacLellan - “A Trip to Mabou Ridge” (1979. Appears as 4th tune in the “King’s Reel” medley). Rounder Records 7057, Jerry Holland – “Parlor Music” (2005). Hanneke Cassel - "For Reason's Unseen" (2010)
See also listing at:
Alan Snyder's Cape Breton Fiddle Recordings Index