Mudcat Café message #3821384 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #102784   Message #3821384
Posted By: keberoxu
18-Nov-16 - 01:38 PM
Thread Name: bagpipe music question
Subject: RE: bagpipe music question
A piece of printed sheet music was delivered to me yesterday, and there was a surprise inside. My purpose in waking up this old sleeping thread is to share the surprise with you, hoping you won't object.

Now, I don't know from bagpipes, so allow me, please, the benefit of the doubt, or something.
Actually, what I ought to say first is, thank you all for forming this thread to begin with; because, it has already answered some of my questions about the surprise.   

On the final inner page of the sheet music is a melody that takes up five lines of staves; no key signature; and grace-notes ALL OVER THE PLACE. The title says "Lament for Nurse Cavell," and author credit reads:
"Jas. Wilson, Pipe Major. Q.V.S. [Queen Victoria School?] Dunblane."

What I actually have here is a photocopy that I paid for, and ordered, from the British Library's Imaging Department. And I had no idea there was going to be bagpipe music anywhere in it.
What I ordered and expected was:
Murdoch Maclean's poem, "A Lament for Edith Cavell." This is printed on one page.
The bulk of the pages contribute Malcolm MacFarlane's Scottish Gaelic lyric, and the melody he composed for it. What has then been done to MacFarlane's piece, is that Maclean's English poem has been squeezed in, so that MacFarlane's melody can be sung either to the Gaelic or to the English. The whole is titled "A Lament. For Nurse Cavell."

There was nothing in the British Library catalog listing, likewise there is nothing on the front cover page, that even hints at a lament -- a "pibroch" perhaps? -- composed by a Pipe Major named "Jas. Wilson."
Truly, a complete surprise.

This whole thing was printed and published with no date on it, though from the Library catalog one could place the date at 1917 or thereabouts. The publisher, in Stirling, is Eneas Mackay.

Thanks for listening.