vrijdag 17 maart 2017

Skye Boat Song (1884)

"The Skye Boat Song" is a Scottish folk song, which can be played as a waltz, recalling the escape of Prince Charles Edward Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie) from Uist to the Isle of Skye after his defeat at the Battle of Culloden in 1746.
The lyrics were written by Sir Harold Boulton to an air collected in the 1870s by Anne Campbell MacLeod (1855–1921).
The song was first published in "Songs of the North" by Boulton and MacLeod, London, 1884, a book that went into at least fourteen editions.
In later editions MacLeod's name was dropped and the ascription "Old Highland rowing measure arranged by Malcolm Lawson" was substituted.

Songs of the North (Folk Songs, Scottish) - IMSLP

According to Andrew Kuntz, a collector of folk music lore, MacLeod was on a trip to the isle of Skye and was being rowed over Loch Coruisk (Coire Uisg, the "Cauldron of Waters") when the rowers broke into a Gaelic rowing song "Cuachag nan Craobh" ("The Cuckoo in the Grove").
Miss MacLeod set down what she remembered of the air, with the intention of using it later in a book she was to co-author with Boulton, who later added the section with the Jacobite associations. "As a piece of modern romantic literature with traditional links it succeeded perhaps too well, for soon people began "remembering" they had learned the song in their childhood, and that the words were 'old Gaelic lines',"

The Skye Boat Song - Wikipedia

Skye Boat Song

Skye Boat Song - Pop Archives - Sources of Australian Pop Records from the 50s, 60s and 70s

In 1892 Robert Louis Stevenson wrote new lyrics for the song which were published in the collection "Songs Of Travel And Other Verses". Songs of Travel, by Robert Louis Stevenson
The version with the 1892 Stevenson-lyrics was used in the TV series "Outlander" (2014)

The version with the Boulton-lyrics was extremely popular in its day, and from its first recording by Tom Bryce in 1899, became a standard among Scottish folk and dance musicians.

(o) Tom Bryce (1899)
Recorded April 29, 1899 in London


But as noted by Lyn Nuttall, the recording date could have been a few months earlier.
Brian Rust on history of British Berliner, with discography, Talking Machine Review 63-64, Autumn 1981. He lists a batch of Tom Bryce records, 2045-2064 (all but one recorded 20-23 Sept 1898)

Talking Machine Review 63-64 : Ernie Bayly : Free Download

Released on Berliner's Gramophone E-2048-X


(c) Atherton Smith (1900's + 1904)
Recorded 1900's in London
Released on Zonophone 12863
Also recorded in July 1904 in London
Released on Odeon 2358


(c) Mr. Andrew Black (1904)
Recorded September 17, 1904 in London


Released on Gramophone Concert Record (G&T) # G.C.-3-2162

Listen here:

(c) P.A. Hope (1911)
Recorded August 9, 1911 in London


Released on Zonophone Records # X-2-42163 and on Zonophone Records # 705

(c) Alexander MacGregor (1924) (as "Oigh Mo Ruin (Skye Boat Song)")
Recorded March 19, 1924 in Hayes, Middlesex


Released on His Master's Voice B-1826

(c) Elder Cunningham (1927)
Recorded January 11, 1927 in London


Released on Columbia 4282

(c) Stuart Robertson (1934)
Recorded October 23, 1934 at Abbey Road Studio in London


Released on His Master's Voice B-8260

(c) Isobel Baillie (1946)
Recorded August 19, 1946 at Abbey Road Studio 3 in London


Released on Columbia DB-2277

Listen here:

(c) Kenneth McKellar (1957)
Recorded March 17, 1957 in London


Released on Decca F-10901

Kenneth McKellar - Lewis Bridal Song / Skye Boat Song (Vinyl) at Discogs

45cat - Kenneth McKellar - Skye Boat Song / Lewis Bridal Song - Decca - UK - F 10901

Listen here:

(c) Tom Jones (1965)
On his debut album "Along Came Jones" in 1965.

Vinyl Album - Tom Jones - Along Came Jones - Decca - UK

Listen here:

Among later renditions which became well known were Peter Nelson and The Castaways from New Zealand, who released a version in 1966, as did Western Australian artist Glen Ingram. Both versions were in the Australian hit parade in 1966

(c) Peter Nelson and The Castaways (1966)

45cat - Peter Nelson And The Castaways - Skye Boat Song - His Master's Voice - Australia

Peter Nelson & The Castaways - Skye Boat Song (Vinyl) at Discogs

(c) Glen Ingram with the Hi-Five (1966)

45cat - Glen Ingram With The Hi Five - Skye Boat Song / Long Time Gone - Clarion - Australia - MCK-1419

Glen Ingram With The The Hi Five / Terry Walker (4) With The The Hi Five - Skye Boat Song / Long Time Gone (Vinyl) at Discogs

(c) Roger Whittaker (1968)
Whistling-only version.

45cat - Roger Whittaker - Early One Morning / Skye Boat Song - Columbia - UK - DB 8333

Roger Whittaker's duet version with Des O'Connor, released in 1986, combined O'Connor's vocals with Whittaker's whistling.

Roger Whittaker & Des O'Connor - The Skye Boat Song (Vinyl) at Discogs

45cat - Roger Whittaker And Des O'Connor - Skye Boat Song / Remember Romance - Tembo - UK - TML 119

Listen here:

(c) Atlantic Crossing Drum And Pipe Band (1976)
Rod Stewart recorded two versions of the song with the Atlantic Crossing Drum And Pipe Band during the sessions for "Atlantic Crossing" (recorded between April and June 1975)
They were released in April 1976 on the next 45.

45cat - Atlantic Crossing Drum And Pipe Band - Skye Boat Song / Skye Boat Song (Original Pipe Version) - Riva - UK - RIVA 2

They were re-released on the deluxe re-release of the "Atlantic Crossing" album in 2009.

(c) Steve Hackett (1983)
Instrumental guitar-only version on "Bay Of Kings" album

Bay of Kings - Wikipedia

(c) The Shadows (1987)
Instrumental version in the Deerhunter style.

Vinyl Album - The Shadows - Simply Shadows - Polydor - UK

Bear McCreary adapted the song as the opening titles of the 2014 Outlander TV series, sung by Raya Yarbrough, He used the lyrics of Robert Louis Stevenson's 1892 version. (the only part in the lyric that was changed: "Merry of soul he sailed on a day" becomes "Merry of soul she sailed on a day")

In the first season a shortened version of  Stevenson's "Skye Boat Song" was used, which was also included on vol 1 of the Original Soundtrack of the series.

But in the second season (2015) a full version was used, which was included on Vol 2 of the Original Soundtrack of the series.

(c) Van Morrison (2017)

3 opmerkingen:

  1. Hello Joop. I have been updating my "Skye Boat Song" with credit to this page. An interesting point for researchers is that the first catalogue for E. Berliner Gramophone in Britain misspelt Tom Bryce's surname as "Brice". Good background here https://archive.org/details/HillandaleNews158/page/n3?q=baritone+%22tom+bryce%22 , plus Brian Rust's history and discography here https://archive.org/details/TMR63_64/page/n17 (He has serial numbers only for 2048 & 2049 but the Gramophone catologue page (that you reproduce) fills the gap. I'm not assuming these sources are new to you, of course!

  2. Hello Lyn, thanks for your professional comments.
    The Berliner discography in the Talking Machine Review is new to me. It gives quite different recording dates for Tom Bryce. I don't know which source is the best to rely on.
    Joop greets

  3. Indeed. I am pasting this from my site in case you haven't seen it. (It might not be new to you, and I don't know whether it helps!)
    "Rust... lists a batch of Tom Bryce records, 2045-2064 (all but one recorded 20-23 Sept 1898) but has a blank next to 2048, now known to be Skye Boat Song. A page from a contemporary Gramophone Company catalogue, reproduced... by Joop, fills in that gap. In fact, Rust notes that these earliest Berliner (Britain) numbers 500-9274 are catalogue numbers assigned later without regard to chronological order, as no matrix numbers were assigned when the records were pressed. They were organised into groups, with the 2000 run denoting male performers."