Short Coated Mary reel

Short Coated Mary has been added to 3 tunebooks.

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One setting

X: 1
T: Short Coated Mary
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Emix
E2 B2 BABc | d2 AF DEFD | E2 B2 BABc | d2 AF E2 E2 :|]
d2 dB e2 e2 | d2 d2 FFFD | d2 dB e2 e2 | d2 AF E2 E2 |
d2 dB e2 e2 | d2 d2 FFFD | E2 B2 BABc | d2 AF E2 E2 |]

Four comments

Short Coated Mary

Surprised that this tune hadn’t been posted- it is often played in Scotland and also much
heard in fiddle classes (I can vouch for that in Orkney). It comes from the Western Isles
and was gathered by Nigel Gatherer. First bit’s reminiscent of An dro Pharao, a Breton
dance tune.

Re: Short Coated Mary

The A part is the same as the A part of Fiddler Play the Light Strathspey, and the B part has many of the same notes. Or it would, were they both played in the same key, and both played as strathspeys. I really think this should be notated in Emin / E Dorian (one sharp) with an accidental C# in the first, third and penultimate measures. There’s no need at all for a G# in the key signature. Notating it in Edor (F# with C# accidental) rather than A mixolydian (F# and C# in key signature) doesn’t change the melody, but suggests or allows a cool C major chord in the accompaniment.

Re: Short Coated Mary

I heard this three years ago when our highly irregular session was visited by a German fiddling girl (who knew only this tune plus fragments of a jig). I never thought I’d come across it again. Thanks for posting.

Re: Short Coated Mary

Looking again for this tune, it’s to be found with 2 ## in key "E Dorian" plus comment "% dorian/mixolydian
hexatonic". I thought the key was problematic - but the above is mysterious to me I fear. Notes just the
same. It’s a catchy tune!