I Will Go Home To Kintail waltz

Also known as Chrò Chinn T-Sàile, Cró Chinn T-Sáile, Kintail, Leaving Kintail, The MacKenzie Lullaby, Return To Kintail, Theid Mi Dhachaidh, Thèid Mi Dhachaidh ’chrò Chinn T-Sàile, Thèid Mi Dhachaidh Chrò Chinn T-Sàile, Theidh Mi Dhachaigh.

There are 14 recordings of this tune.

I Will Go Home To Kintail has been added to 1 tune set.

I Will Go Home To Kintail has been added to 59 tunebooks.

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Two settings

X: 1
T: I Will Go Home To Kintail
R: waltz
M: 3/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmix
X: 2
T: I Will Go Home To Kintail
R: waltz
M: 3/4
L: 1/8
K: Amix
B4 c<d e2 A4  f3e d2 e2 A4  |B4 c<d e2 A4  e4 e<d B4 B<A G4  |
B4 c<d e2 A4  f3e d2 e2 A4  |Bd3 B2 e4 d4 B2 B>B A4  ||
g4  f2 e3  aa4  f2 e3 ff4  e2 d3 ee2 A4  |g4  f2 e3  aa4  f2 e3 ff4  e2 d3 BB4  A2 G4  |
g4  f2 e3  aa4  f2 e3 ff4  e2 d3 ee2 A4  |Bd3 B2 e6  d4 B2 B>B A4  ||

Eighteen comments

Not a waltz, another slow air…

This is a very old (around 1600) scottish song from Ross-shire, that I find is beautiful as a slow air, played with a rubato (I tend to lenthen the last note of every eight bar - or end of the melody bit…). Its ancientness makes for the odd number of bars (34…)

Thèid mi dhachaidh chrò Chinn t-Sàile

The full title is Thèid mi dhachaidh chrò Chinn t-Sàile, which means ‘I Will Go Home To Kintail’. It’s said to have been written at the Battle of Sheriffmuir during the first Jacobite uprising in 1715. Kintail is in Wester Ross, 15 miles from Skye.

Thèid mi dhachaidh chrò Chinn t-Sàile

I should say it’s more commonly known as “I Will Go Home to Kintail”. The actual gaelic title means “I Will Go Home To The Cattlefold Of Kintail”

Thanks for the precision of the title !
On the booklet I found it on (Orain na Rosach), it’s in the “Gun urrain” chapter, songs from between 1569-1600, so I guess it’s quite older than the Jacobites uprising. The story is nice : the soldier whosw supposed to have composed it was sute he coulédn^t make it back home to Kintail alone, but he finally did…

correction : the soldier who’s supposed to have composed it was sure he wouldn’t be able to get back home alone, but he finally did it… happy ending (for once…)

Karen Matheson and Angus Grant

This was done wonderfully on the ‘Rob Roy’ soundtrack by Karen Matheson and Angus Grant.


Rob Roy’s soundrack and film was leaps and bounds better than that other ‘Scottish film’ of the same year. Just look up Ailein Duinn from Rob Roy if not convinced


Odd version….

I found a CD by the Scottish/South American band “Salsa Celtica” in a charity shop last week. The first track on the recording is this tune played over a samba percussion beat. The track is called “Rumba Escocia/Cro Chinn t-Saile”. Very original, very clever, but I think I prefer the original.
I have a bagpipe setting of this with 4 parts, incidentally.
This is one of my favourite slow airs, since hearing accordionist Alan Clarke playing it on one of my very few visits to the Aberdeen Fiddle and Accordion Club in the early 1970s. Some tunes stick with you, and you never forget. This is one of them for me.

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Eerie Beauty

Ironically, Cathal McConnell listed it as ‘Leaving Kintail’ on his ‘Long Expectant Comes at Last’ album. I haven’t heard any other version yet, yet it’s the definitive version for me!!
‘Rubato’ is right; I’ve listen to that track on a loop to try to totally soak in that particular ‘swing’ but whenever I’m left to my own devices I make it too square again! Am I trying too hard?
it’ s a Beauty and it’s almost a pity to see it submitted in written form…elusive should it remain!

of course ‘definitive version’ is a silly concept. I mean it only as a term of great appreciation. So, thanks for the link DonallDubh!
A Spanish (?) piper has submitted this other short link ‘con el arco iris de fondo’.

…The Scots and Irish should consider exporting their rainbows, they’d make a fortune! While stocks last.

I agree Birly… I do think you can’t really write it properly without taking out the soul of that piece… that’s why I’m speaking of Rubato. Maybe it should be written like Giovanna Marini’s songs : without bars, just the melody line with a few rythmical cues…
but it’s like that with tunes I love, I just want to pass them on… idealistic me…

and it is a highly commandable gesture and still a great tune! Thanks!

“The actual gaelic title means “I Will Go Home To The Cattlefold Of Kintail” “


Chrò a Chinn t-Sàile, phonetic; Crow a Kin’Tale. Cro of Kintail. Chrò means; cattlefold (easier to understand as “cattle pen”). The Cro of Kintail is the area of low ground penned in on three sides by mountains and one side by the sea. Access to which is made either through narrow and steep high glens and passes, therefore easily defended and difficult to heard cows over without inviting swift retribution, or by sailing up to the head of Loch Duich. Geography makes this area a natural safe haven for four hoofed movable assets, hence “cattlefold” of Kintail.

Driving over the causeway at the head of Loch Duich, “the Cro” is the flat inland plain sheltering below the mightily impressive steep flank of Ben Fada (the long mountain) barring the view to the north, stares you right in the face as you look inland from the causeway road.

Great tune

This is probably my favorite air. I’ve posted my meterless transcription, based on the version I play, which I learned from the Tannahill Weavers recording.

I’ve posted the transcription in Amix, to fit the range and scale of the GHB. However, when I’m playing it alone on whistle, I most often play it in Emix. While that means cross-fingering or half-holing a few G#s, it seems like the best key for the tune on whistle. Why? It’s the lowest key I can play it in without folding. That lets it come through mellow and resonant, which meshes best with my conceptualization of what the tune is saying.


I play William Jackson’s version of this on harp. Great tune and actually the first tune I mastered on the harp. Thanks for the further info on this. When I compete in harp comps I need to tell back story and I now know a whole lot more than befor

Re: I Will Go Home To Kintail

Hi, just wondering if any one has Anne MacDearmids arrangement of this? Struggling to get it