Wha’ll Dance Wi’ Wattie ?
I’ve been looking at a few of the recordings of Shetland music posted here, and was surprised that this very simple tune wasn’t here yet. I first heard it played 3rd in a set of reels by Aly Bain on his duet recording with Mike Whellans, from around 1967, I think. I’ll post that recording here in the next few days. The set was "Jack Broke Da Prison Door / Donald Blue / Wha’ll Dance Wi’ Wattie ?". It then appeared on "The Old Woman’s Dance", the second album by the "Tannahill Weavers", transferred brilliantly on to Highland bagpipes by Allan MacLeod. One of the best sets of Scottish music I’ve ever heard.
This setting comes from the book "Da Mirrie Dancers", which has this to say :
"A traditional reel from the North mainland of Shetland. "Wattie" was a seaman who was very fond of dancing. When he was home on leave and attending a local dance his partners had to work very hard to keep pace with him, and the word would go around, "Who’ll Dance Wi’ Wattie now ?"