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John McNeills Highland Fling

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John McNeills Highland Fling
ID JSS0075
Title John McNeills Highland Fling
Document Reference MS2726/68
Format 236 x 258
Medium pen & ink on music manuscript paper,with handwritten notes
Item Type Manuscript
Subject Music, Scottish Bagpipe Music, Strathspey, Highland Fling
Item Description Manuscript of 'John McNeill's Highland Fling' (left) 'Pipe Strathspey' (right) '*J. Scott Skinner'. Skinner wrote no time signature, since it is clear that the music has 4 crotchet beats to each bar. Skinner would have to trust the engraver to add 4/4 at the beginning of each staff. In A major, the G sharp is altered to G natural to show that Skinner planned this as a pipe tune, where G natural is possible, but G sharp isn't. The music is in three two-stave systems, the top for the melody, the bottom for the accompaniment. The bass line in the second system is parallel fifths, in crotchets, over which he writes 'Real effect of drones', emphasizing the link with the pipes. Pasted over the bottom of the page is Skinner's note: *The phrase, 'Where labour is apparent, grace is wanting' does not apply to such artists. Skinner thought highly of Edinburgh-based piper and dancer McNeill. At the Sword Dance competition at Bray, Ireland, in 1862, Skinner won first prize, playing the fiddle as he danced. But he 'honestly believed (the prize) should have gone to McNeill', and offered him the purse of 'three guineas' (£3.15). As Skinner tells the story in My Life and Adventures, McNeill replied '_ye're the best man that I've seen come out of the North', and was pleased to 'ha(v)e a dram' (a measure of neat Scotch whisky) with the 19-year old winner.
Creator James Scott Skinner
Creator Manuscript James Scott Skinner
Time Period 1890's - 1900's
Relationships JSS0074
Location University of Aberdeen
Collection Name Harp & Claymore


University of Aberdeen

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