South of the Grampians

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X:1 % T:South of the Grampians M:C L:1/8 R:Strathspey B:Milne – Middleton’s Selection of Strathspeys, Reels &c. for the Violin (1870, p. 24) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:A A,>B,C>D E<C F2|E<C F2 E<CC<A|A,>B,(C>c) {e}(d>c)d>e| (3fed (3cBA (3GFE (3DCB,|A,>B,C>D E<C F2|E<C F2 E<CC>c| {e}(d>c)(d>f) e<Ac>e|(3fed (3cBA G<BB||c|(A>e)(c>e) (A>e)(c>e)| (A>e)(c>e) (3Ace (3fga|(A>e)(c>e) (A>e)(c>e)|(3fed (3cBA G<BB>c|(A>e)(c>e) (A>e)(c>e)| (A>e)(c>e) (3Ace (3efg|(3agf (3edc (3fed (3cBA|(3dcB (3cBA (3GFE (3DCB,||!fine!A,8|]



SOUTH OF THE GRAMPIANS. AKA – “Miss Rogerson's Strathspey.” Scottish, Strathspey. A Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The tune (originally "Balance of Comfort (The)" or “Miss Rogerson's Strathspey” according to David Baptie) is attributed to James Porteous (1762-1847) who hailed from Meinfoot, near Ecclefechan, and who published one collection in 1820. Porteous is today lightly considered as a composer, and this is one of the few of his compositions that have entered traditional repertory. Bill Hardie notes: "This strathspey is a typical example of what fiddlers of two generations ago referred to as 'a double-breasted tune', i.e. it makes intelligent use of all four strings." See also similarly titled "North of the Grampians." Christine Martin (2002) gives that traditional fiddlers usually follow the tune in a medley with “John McNeil(’s Reel)” or Peter Milne's “Marquis of Huntly’s Reel” in a medley. The Grampian Mountains are the highest mountain peaks in Britain, extending northeast to southwest along the southern fringe of the Highlands in central Scotland. Ben Nevis (4,406 ft.) is the tallest peak in the range. The tune is played as a Highland in County Donegal.

Additional notes

Source for notated version: - Winston Fitzgerald (1914-1987, Cape Breton) [Cranford].

Printed sources : - Cranford (Winston Fitzgerald), 1997; No. 91, p. 39. Hardie (Caledonian Companion), 1986; p. 33. Honeyman (Strathspey, Reel and Hornpipe Tutor), 1898; p. 21. Kerr (Merry Melodies, vol. 1), c. 1880’s; Set 18, No. 3, p. 12. Martin (Ceol na Fidhle, vol. 3), 1988; p. 26. Martin (Traditional Scottish Fiddling, 2002; p. 14. Skinner (Harp and Claymore), 1904; p. 103.

Recorded sources: - Olympic 6151, Angus Cameron - "Scottish Traditional Fiddle Music" (1978). Topic 12TS381, The Battlefield Band - "At the Front" (1978). “James F. Dickie’s Delights” (1976).

See also listings at:
Alan Snyder’s Cape Breton Fiddle Recording Index [1]
Jane Keefer’s Folk Music Index: An Index to Recorded Sources [2]
See Gavin Grieg's handwritten manuscript copy of the tune for the Harp and Claymore [3]
Hear the tune played by Joseph MacKay at Tobar an dualchais [4][5]



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