1784 – Patrick MacDonald (P)

A Collection of Highland Vocal Airs. Never hitherto published. To which are added a few of the most lively Country Dances or Reels of the North Highlands & Western Isles: and some Specimens of Bagpipe Music. By Patrick MacDonald Minister of Kilmore in Argyleshire.

First published Edinburgh [1784]. 11 editions are described in A Bibliography of Bagpipe Music. The images below are from Edition I.

This source contains material relating to 4 pibrochs:

P:38  PS 200  Cumha Mhic a h Arasaig / McIntosh’s Lament
P:41  PS 057  Cha till mi tuil
P:42  PS 132  A’ Ghlas Mheur / A bagpipe lament
P:43  PS 204  Coma leam, coma leam cogadh na’ sith / Alike to me peace or war

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3 thoughts on “1784 – Patrick MacDonald (P)”

  1. I’ve payed these 4 tunes for a period of time. What struck me in particular was the beauty of MacIntosh’s Lament, a setting unlike any other I know of in the piping tradition.

    Patrick MacDonald has been discredited as being a non-piper. However he states quite clearly in the Preface (p7) that he made a special journey to Lochaber to record those 4 tunes and I suspect that he recorded them reasonably accurately – he had practice with other instruments on his collecting tours. Patrick stated quite clearly that he struggled to record ‘graces and flourishes’. However a piper familiar with the styles of MacArthur and MacDonald can insert these as appropriate.

    1. Good observation Allan, but the p.40 fiddle set of McIntosh’s Lament, as well as A’ Ghlas Mheur, are clearly in a strong traditional fiddle style and quite un-pipey, so I suspect a different, fiddle source for these two settings.

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