Complete Songs Of Robert Burns - online book

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to Mrs. M"Leliose is dated June 25,1794. Scott-Douglas makes a curious sug­gestion that this song is her composition, which Burns abstracted.
The tune for this celebrated lyric, Ther'll never be peace till Jamie comes hame, is a Jacobite melody. Thomson disregarded Burns's direction, and set the song to the Irish tune Coolin. In vocal collections the song is printed with a modern tune. It is now for the first time associated with the music for which it was written, otherwise known as There are few good fellows when Jamie's awa\ See tune No. J02.
TTo. 82. O May, thy morn was ne'er sae sweet. Scots Musical Museum, 1796, No. 464, signed ' B.' The MS. is in the British Museum. The verses are snpposed to commemorate the last interview with ' Clarinda.' Burns entitled the tune The Rashes, which is in Oswald's Companion, 1753, v. 26. The editor of the Museum considerably altered the tune. The music in the text is taken from the copy Burns directed. It is now best known as The wee wee German Lairdie, from a song which originally appeared in Cromek's Nithsdale and Galloway Song, 1810, written probably by Allan Cunningham, although vouched as old by the Ettrick Shepherd. Tibbie Shiel, of St. Mary's Loch, the celebrated hostess of Sir Walter Scott, sung it to The dowie dens of Yarrow. It is set to that well-known ballad in Kidson's Traditional Tunes, 1891, .2J ; it also did modern service in Yorkshire to a Roxburgh ballad, A lamentable new ditty , . . to a delicate Scottish tune. In the Caledonian Pocket Companion, xi. 2j, the tune is repeated under the title When the King comes o'er the water.
Mo. 83. Ance mair I hail thee. Scots Musical Museum, 1796, No. 499, signed ' R.' The MS. is in the British Museum. An unfinished copy of the verses was sent to ' Clarinda' about the end of December, 1791. Stenhonse has asserted that Burns wrote the song for the tune Wandering Willie, but that is incorrect. On the MS. of the song, Burns wrote as follows : ' Tune, Thrd the lang muir /followed him hame. See this tune, Oswald's Book [vii.]_jo.' It is also in Aird's Airs, 1782, i. No. 34.
Mo. 84. Ae fond kiss, and then we sever! Scots Musical Museum, 1792, No. J47, signed 'X,' entitled Rory Dalfs port. This Impassioned lyric also belongs to the second cycle of the 'Clarinda' series. The lady had arranged to rejoin her husband in the West Indies, and the verses refer to her departure in December, 1791. Burns sent her copies of a few songs at the same time, saying ' I have just been composing to different tunes, for the Collection of Songs [Johnson's Museum~], of which you have three volumes, and of which you shall have the fourth.'
The air Rory JJall's port is in the Caledonian Pocket Companion, c. 1756, viii. 24. In Straloch's MS. 1629, there is a different melody of the same name. Rory Dall was the cognomen of a succession of harpers attached to the family of Macleod of Skye. Port is the generic name for the national Celtic airs of the Highlands of Scotland. A large number ofports are believed to be still floating in the Western Highlands, unrecorded.
Mo. 85. Sensibility how charming. Scots Musical Museum, 1792, No._7.29. Select Melodies, 1822, I'll. j6. The MS. is in the British Museum. After Burns relinquished Ellisland and before removing to Dumfries, he made an excursion to Edinburgh, on which occasion he paid a visit to Clarinda. The correspondence between them, which abruptly terminated in 1788 in con­sequence of his marriage, was resumed in 1791, and this watery song was written in return for some verses she sent to him. Copies were forwarded to Mrs. Dunlop and Mrs. Stewart of Afton. In the Museum MS. the song is directed to be sung to Cornwa/lis lament for Colonel Moorhouse, a poor composition of the professional type, written by a Malcolm Stewart. No ordinary human voice can reach all the notes in the tune. To account for the great compass of many of the Scottish melodies, it is necessary to know that the falsetto voice was much used among the peasantry.