Tartan Plaid (1)
X:113 T:Tartan Plaid . RH.113 R:Reel S:Rev.R.Harrison's MS,c1815,Cumbria O:England A:Temple Sowerby,Cumbria Z:vmp.Simon Wilson. Review PJH, 2008. M:C| L:1/8 Q:1/2=70 K:C gc (a/g/f/e/) gc (a/g/f/e/)|gc (a/g/f/e/) fddf|\ gc (a/g/f/e/) gc (a/g/f/e/)|fagf ecc2:|! |:GcEc Gcec|GcEc dDDc|GcEc Gcec|eagf ecc2:|]
TARTAN PLAID . AKA - "Tartan Plaidie." AKA and see: "Belles of Campbelltown," "Blind Nora O'Neill," "Blind Norry's," "Highland Plaid (3) (The)," "Lady Loman's," "Lady Louden's Strathspey," "Lady Loudon," "Mrs. Parker's Fancy." English, Irish; Reel (cut time). C Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The title "Tartan Plaid" appears in Henry Robson's list of popular Northumbrian song and dance tunes ("The Northern Minstrel's Budget"), which he published c. 1800. When a fashion for Scottish dancing hit London at the turn of the 18th century, “The Tartan Plaidie” was one of the tunes danced to, as we see in this excerpt from a London paper called The Star (06/01/1799), which reported on a recent ball at Oatlands Palace, Surrey, England:
At the fete given by Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of York, at Oatlands on the 30th of May (1799), the dances were as follows: 1. Ramah Droog. 2. Miss Murray of Auchtertyre. 3. The Tartan Plaidie. 4. Lady Harriet Hope’s Reel. And lastly, the enchanting tune of Miss Gordon of Troupe’s Strathspey was called for by Princess Augusta, and danced twice over by all the fet. Between the second and third dance, Their Majesties desiring to see the Highland Reel in all its purity, it was danced by the Marquis of Huntley and the Lady Georgiana Gordon, Colonel Erskine and Lady Charlotte Durham, with all the elastic motion, hereditary character, and boundless variety of the Scottish dance.
However, as so often happens, the title "Tartan Plaid" takes is name from the name of the dance it was associated with, so that the tune name and dance name became synonymous. The melody was originally called "Lady Loudon," composed by William Gow (1751-1791), eldest son of famed fiddler-composer Niel Gow.