Blue Bonnets Over The Border jig

Also known as All The Blue Bonnets, All The Blue Bonnets Over The Border, Blue Bonnets, Blue Bonnets O’er The Border, Blue Bonnets Over The Boarder, Blue Bonnets Over The Bonnet.

There are 19 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with Khazi (a few times) and The Rock And The Wee Pickle Tow (a few times).

Blue Bonnets Over The Border has been added to 11 tune sets.

Blue Bonnets Over The Border has been added to 166 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Nine settings

X: 1
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmin
|: B,6 | B,3C D2 | d4 c2 | B3G F2 | BG3 G2 |G3z g2 |g3f d2 |
d3c d2 | B,6 |B,3C D2 | d4 c2 | B3G F2 | G6 |
D4 F2 | GB3 D2 |1 C6 :|2 C6 | C4 CD ||
|: B3d f2 | f3d B2 | g3f d2 | c3d c2 |B3d f2 | g3a b2 |
B3c d2 | c6 |B3d f2 | f3d B2 | g3f d2 | d3c d2 |
B3A G2 | FD3 F2 | GB3 D2 |1 C4 B,2 :|2 C6 | C6 ||
K:C
|: C6 | C3D E2 | c3e d2 | c3A G2 |c/[A3/2A3/2] [A2A2] [A2A2] | [A4A4] a2 |
a3g e2 | e3d e2 |C6 | C3D E2 | c3e d2 | c3A G2 |
[A3A3]A AA | G/E3/2 E2 G2 | Ac3/2 c2 E2 | D6 :|
c3e g2 | g3e g2 | z3g/a/ g/ea/ | d4 e/d3/2 |c3e g2 | a3b c'2 |
c3d e2 | d6 | c3e g2 | g3e g2 | a3g e2 | d3e d2 |
c3B A2 | G/E3/2 E2 G2 | Ac3 E2 | D4 C2 |
D6 | e2 e2 c2 | C2 c2 D2 | C2 a2 f2 |a6 |
X: 2
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | G3 D2F |1 G<BD C3 :|2 C3- C2D |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c3 |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F<DF | G<BD C2B, :|
|: C3 C>DE | e2d c>AG | c<AA A>aa | a>ge e>de |
C3 C>DE | e2d c>AG | A3 E2G |1 A<cE D3 :|2 D3- D2E |
|: c>eg g>ec | a>ge d>ed | c>eg a>bc' | c>de d3 |
c>eg g>ec | a>ge e>de | c>BA G<EG | A<cE D2C :|
|: D3 D>EF | f2e d>BA | d<BB B>bb | b>af f>ef |
D3 D>EF | f2e d>BA | B3 F2A |1 B<dF E3 :|2 E3- E2F |
|: d>fa a>fd | b>af e>fe | d>fa b>c'd' | d>ef e3 |
d>fa a>fd | b>af f>ef | d>cB A<FA | B<dF E2D :|
X: 3
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmin
|: B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2A | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2A | B>AG F>GA |1 B>cd c2B :|2 B>cd c2B |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c2B |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F>GA | B>cd c2B :|
X: 4
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmin
|: B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2G | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2G | B>AG F>GA |1 B>cd c2B :|2 B>cd c2B ||
|: B>df ~f3 | g>fd d>cd | B>df g>ab | B>cd c2B |
B>df ~f3 | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F>GA | B>cd c2B :|
X: 5
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Gmin
|: B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | G3 D2F |1 G<BD C3 :|2 C3- C2D |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c3 |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F<DF | G<BD C2B, :|
X: 6
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Cmaj
|: C3 C>DE | c>ed c2A | c<AA A>aa | a>ge e>de |
C3 C>DE | c>ed c2A | c>BA G>AB |1 c>de d2c :|2 c>de d2c |
|: c>eg ~g3 | a>ge e>de | c>eg a>bc’ | c>de d2c |
c>eg ~g3 | a>ge e>de | c>BA G>AB | c>de d2c :|
X: 7
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
D |: "G"Gz2 "C"G3 | "G"GBA G2D | "C"G>EE E2d | "Em"edB "D7"A>BA |
"G"Gz2 "C"G3 | "G"GBA G2D | "C"G>FE "G"D2D | "Em"EGB "D7"A2G :|
|: "G"G>Bd dBG | "C"edB "G"BAG | "G"G>Bd "Em"efg | "Am"G>AB "D7"A2G |
"G"G>Bd dBG | "C"edB "G"BAG | "C"G>FE "G"D2D | "Em"EGB "D7"A3 :|
X: 8
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Amix
A>AA c2e|a>aa a2e|g>ag f<af|e>cA B2e|
A>AA c2e|a>aa a2e|f>ed c>de|f<ac B2A:|
|:A>ce e>ce|f>ed c>BA|A>ce f>ga|A>Bc B2A|
A>ce e>ce|f>ed c>BA|a>gf e>ce|f<ac B2A:|
|:d3 d3|d>fe d>BA|d>BB B>fg|a>gf f>ef|
d3 d3|d>fe d>BA|d>cB A>Bc|d>ef e2d:|
|:d>fa a>fd|a>gf f>ef|d>fa a>fd|d>ef f2e|
d>fa a>fd|a>gf f>ef|d>cB A>Bc|d>ef e2d:|
X: 9
T: Blue Bonnets Over The Border
R: jig
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: Amaj
ABA c2e | aba a2e | gag fgf | ecA B2e |
ABA c2e | aba a2e | fed cde | f<ac B2A :|
| Ace ece | fed cBA | Ace efa | ABc B2A |
Ace ece | fed cBA | agf ece | f<ac B2A:|

Thirty-five comments

Blue Bonnets

This is a tune actually in 6/8 time and in Bb. This tune is done by Natalie MacMaster as a slow air on the Live CD.

Odd -

I have this both in a Canadian collection and in the Skye Collection but, it’s done in A in cut time. But the note intervals are almost identical. Interesting …

Even Odder

The Skye Collection has this listed in Bb / 6/8 time also. I stand corrected. Perhaps a different border or a different blue …

Blue Bonnets Over the Border

My favourite recording of this tune was done by Ashley MacIsaac on his 1992 recording "Close to the Floor" … He plays this version on the piano. I’ve heard all of the other recordings mentioned in "The Session" comments, but I still love this one the best by far.

Blue Bonnets

Yes, a piping jig from Scotland usually written in A and Bb an 6/8… Also a Highland dance to the same tune. There ARE words to it, but as of the moment I don’t have them nearby, otherwise I’d post them :) (I’ll have to do it later)

Is this right….

is it me or are there parts of this tune that don’t make any sense..
I’m only playing it from the dots mind… I’m sure if I knew the tune it would make more sense… but some of those dots are might strange…..

Blue Bonnets Over the Border

My favorite recording of this is from the Battlefield Band’s Happy Daze album. I always feel like I’m in New Orleans when I hear it. =D

A solution to paulflute’s problem, perhaps?

I find it odd that the submitter decided to notate it in 3/4 and then say "oh, it’s actually in 6/8". The reason the dots look a bit odd (apart from it being shown in both Bb and C) is that it is, well, notated in an odd time signature.

A direct edit would read:

X: 1
T: Blue Bonnets
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
R: waltz
K: Bb
|: B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | G3 D2F |1 G<BD C3 :|2 C3- C2D |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c3 |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F<DF | G<BD C2B, :|

and in Cmaj,

X:1
T:Blue Bonnets
M:6/8
L:1/8
R:waltz
K:Cmaj
|: C3 C>DE | e2d c>AG | c<AA A>aa | a>ge e>de |
C3 C>DE | e2d c>AG | A3 E2G |1 A<cE D3 :|2 D3- D2E |
|: c>eg g>ec | a>ge d>ed | c>eg a>bc’ | c>de d3 |
c>eg g>ec | a>ge e>de | c>BA G<EG | A<cE D2C :|

(and in Dmaj too, for whistles!)

X:1
T:Blue Bonnets
M:6/8
L:1/8
R:waltz
K:Dmaj
|: D3 D>EF | f2e d>BA | d<BB B>bb | b>af f>ef |
D3 D>EF | f2e d>BA | B3 F2A |1 B<dF E3 :|2 E3- E2F |
|: d>fa a>fd | b>af e>fe | d>fa b>c’d’ | d>ef e3 |
d>fa a>fd | b>af f>ef | d>cB A<FA | B<dF E2D :|

And the John McCusker version, from Yella Hoose

In Bbmaj

X:1
T:Blue Bonnets
M:6/8
L:1/8
S:John McCusker - Yella Hoose
R:waltz
K:Bbmaj
|: B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2A | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2A | B>AG F>GA |1 B>cd c2B :|2 B>cd c2B |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c2B |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F>GA | B>cd c2B :|

Hmmm…what to do?

The sheet music here is probably not the best resource in the world…

It is of course "correct", but an unconventional way of notating it. Perhaps I should hand the puzzle over to Weejie or ceolachan… :-)

More of a conundrum than a puzzle…

I ought to reiterate that John McCusker also plays it slow on Yella Hoose.

S: John McCusker - Yella Hoose

Yes, I admit, this has already been submitted before back in 2004 at: https://thesession.org/tunes/2402, but I’ve decided to put it here again as a jig, rather than a waltz, as, well, that’s what it is. The original submitter notated it as a waltz and then said themselves it’s actually in 6/8 - I think the slowness of the tune may have been their reason.

Anyway, Jeremy and the wider community can of course decide which version wins out, I thought I’d post it so it (a) comes under the jig classification and (b) has hopefully more useful sheet music than the other one. Can’t help the fact it’s actually in Bb major of course.

Here it is with full headers.

X: 1
T: Blue Bonnets
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
S: John McCusker - Yella Hoose
R: jig
K: Bbmaj
|: B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2G | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | B>dc B2G | B>AG F>GA |1 B>cd c2B :|2 B>cd c2B |
|: B>df ~f3 | g>fd d>cd | B>df g>ab | B>cd c2B |
B>df ~f3 | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F>GA | B>cd c2B :|

and again in Cmaj

X:1
T:Blue Bonnets
M:6/8
L:1/8
S:John McCusker - Yella Hoose
R:jig
K:Cmaj
|: C3 C>DE | c>ed c2A | c<AA A>aa | a>ge e>de |
C3 C>DE | c>ed c2A | c>BA G>AB |1 c>de d2c :|2 c>de d2c |
|: c>eg ~g3 | a>ge e>de | c>eg a>bc’ | c>de d2c |
c>eg ~g3 | a>ge e>de | c>BA G>AB | c>de d2c :|

—————————————————————————————————-

And from the original submission by blgr47 but converted to a 6/8 tune,

X: 1
T: Blue Bonnets
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
R: jig
K: Bb
S: Natalie MacMaster - Live Disc 1
|: B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | B<GG G>gg | g>fd d>cd |
B,3 B,>CD | d2c B>GF | G3 D2F |1 G<BD C3 :|2 C3- C2D |
|: B>df f>dB | g>fd c>dc | B>df g>ab | B>cd c3 |
B>df f>dB | g>fd d>cd | B>AG F<DF | G<BD C2B, :|

—————————————————————————————————-

Some other comments from that version:

Odd -
I have this both in a Canadian collection and in the Skye Collection but, it’s done in A in cut time. But the note intervals are almost identical. Interesting …
# Posted on January 18th 2004 by 2situla

Even Odder
The Skye Collection has this listed in Bb / 6/8 time also. I stand corrected. Perhaps a different border or a different blue …
# Posted on January 18th 2004 by 2situla

Blue Bonnets
Yes, a piping jig from Scotland usually written in A and Bb an 6/8… Also a Highland dance to the same tune. There ARE words to it, but as of the moment I don’t have them nearby, otherwise I’d post them (I’ll have to do it later)
# Posted on February 1st 2004 by Oranaiche

—————————————————————————————————-

And the John Chambers version, http://abcnotation.com/tunePage?a=trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/book/SCD/Book03/BlueBonnetsOverTheBorder_G-JC/0000

X: 1
T: Blue Bonnets Over the Border
T: Lesley’s march to Scotland
R: jig, march
B: RSCDS 3-5
B: Kerr’s Violin v.1
B: Watt’s Musical Miscellany, 1731
B: Oswald 1755
Z: 1997 by John Chambers <jc:trillian.mit.edu>
N: 17th century tune, known originally as "Lesley’s march to Scotland"
N: Sir Walter Scott wrote the song "Blue Bonnets Over the Border" to this tune.
M: 6/8
L: 1/8
K: G
D \
|: "G"Gz2 "C"G3 | "G"GBA G2D | "C"G>EE E2d | "Em"edB "D7"A>BA || "G"Gz2 "C"G3 | "G"GBA G2D |
| "C"G>FE "G"D2D | "Em"EGB "D7"A2G :: "G"G>Bd dBG | "C"edB "G"BAG | "G"G>Bd "Em"efg |
| "Am"G>AB "D7"A2G || "G"G>Bd dBG | "C"edB "G"BAG | "C"G>FE "G"D2D | "Em"EGB "D7"A3 :|

—————————————————————————————————-

Another source, with story: http://www.flutetunes.com/tunes.php?id=841

—————————————————————————————————-

Lyrics by Sir Walter Scott

Blue Bonnets Over the Border

March, march, Ettrick and Teviotdale,
Why the deil dinna ye march forward in order?
March, march, Eskdale and Liddesdale,
All the Blue Bonnets are bound for the Border.
Many a banner spread
Flutters above your.head,
Many a crest that is famous in story.
Mount and make ready then,
Sons of the mountain glen,
Fight for the Queen and the old Scottish glory.

Come from the hills where your hirsels are grazing,
Come from the glen of the buck and the roe;
Come to the crag where the beacon is blazing,
Come with the buckler, the lance, and the bow.
Trumpets are sounding,
War-steeds are bounding,
Stand to your arms then, and march in good order;
England shall many a day
Tell of the bloody fray,
When the Blue Bonnets came over the Border.

—————————————————————————————————-

Anyway, this long comment may come to nothing, if it is decided the other version deserves to stay over mine.

Blue Bonnets Over The Border (jig)

Possibly a well known fact, but it might be worth mentioning that this is the basis of the great Irish jig "Scotsman Over the Border" https://thesession.org/tunes/548

Yes Nigel, which is likewise known as The Carraroe
https://thesession.org/tunes/771
but I don’t think it’s a well known fact.

The (Highland) pipe march/jig is an interesting offshoot - the tune won’t remotely fit on the chanter, so play it in A, then D, and between the two of them you get the tune.

I think it was also known as The Carraroe Jig in Ireland because Carraroe House was where the pianist lived. A long evolution then and a great tune.

This is the tune I heard played in Kerry recently:
X:1
T:Lesslie’ March.
T:Leslie’s March
T:Blue Bonnets over the Border
N:dates from Cromwell’s time (c.1650)
M:6/8
L:1/8
K:D
% TUNEdb Number 8845
d3 d3 |dcB ABc|dcB AGF|GAF TE2D |\
e3 e3 |fed eag|fed BAB|def Te2d::
fed eAA|fed eAA|gfe fBB|gfe fBB |\
fed eAA|fed eag|fed BAB|def Te2d::
dfa dfa|dfa agf|egb egb|egb bge |\
dfa dfa|dfa aeg|fed BAB|def e2d::

Posted by .

OK, but Leslie’s March is a different tune

All the settings…

…in one handy place! Cheers Jeremy.

Ought to add that the very first setting is pretty wrong.

Scotsman…

It is no co-incidence that the ‘over the border’ theme is shared with the title of this tune:
https://thesession.org/tunes/548 . Some will no doubt argue vehemently that there is no connection between the tunes, and the titles are entirely arbitrary. But the relationship is obvious to me. Not the same tune, but undoubtedly related - the similarity is most marked in the B-part.

Leslie’s March

Leslie’s March https://thesession.org/tunes/987
It’s a similar *type* of tune, and maybe related if you go back far enough. But I have a suspicion that it might simply be a case of mistaken identity.

Blue Bonnets Over The Border, X:8

This is something like it would be played on the GHB with, as mentioned above, two parts in A (mix) and then two parts in D. In this form it’s a 6/8 march so played pointed and taken at a pace gentler than would be for a jig.

Scottish Borders style

Version 8 is probably the closest to how it is still played in the Border country, by flute bands and brass bands, as well as pipe bands. I wonder if this was a tune that originated on the Border pipes? Its Border associations, thanks to Walter Scott, stretch back at least 200 years, to a time when the Border pipes were ubiquitous.
And it’s worth remembering how astonishingly popular Scott’s poetry and songs were 200 years ago: it would be easy to conceive of a song of his being sung throughout Ireland and America.

Query..?

How many "flute bands" are there in the "Borders" area, and where are they based ?

Posted by .

Thanks for that link, "DonaldK".

Posted by .

Blue Bonnets

I think that the confusion of Bb vs A comes from the way Highland Pipes are tuned. They are always in Bb. However, it is easier to fiddle the tune in A and if you are not playing with a pipe, most folks play it in A.
Sylvia Miskoe, Concord NH, USA

Well actually, Sylvia, they’re not really Bb. They are Bb and a bit. But pipers don’t think of the pipes being in Bb (or Bb and a bit) anyway. They think of the pipes as being in A. A lot of pipers will now have sets tuned to concert A so that they can play along with the rest of us.

Flute bands

Selkirk and Langholm have flute bands too.

Thanks…………….

Thank you Brian. I see that there are photos and articles about all 3 bands [ including Hawick mentioned above ] spread throughout the internet. I will be looking in to this, as it’s something I’ve just recently become interested in. Much appreciated.

Posted by .

Blue Bonnets Over The Border, X:9

Setting from O’Neill’s 1001, #268 (titled "Blue Bonnets Jig"

Re: Blue Bonnets Over The Border

Most of the notated versions given above are are strange. The only one that really makes sense is the one by DonaldK (X: 8). It’s a 6/8 march that has been played in the Scottish Borders for hundreds of years. The first two parts are in A mixolydian, and the third and fourth switch to D major; everything fits the range of the GHB and the Lowland pipes, the latter being what I suspect it was originally played on. Even if you want to play it as a jig rather than a march, on the fiddle, whistle, flute and most other instruments it will work better in A/D than B flat or other keys.

Re: Blue Bonnets Over The Border

The majority of the settings here would certainly seem strange to someone used to the GHB version (6/8 march).
Natalie MacMaster has recorded the tune several times; once as a slow air in Bb, once as a jig in Bb and once as an air in Bb and then in C. The majority of Cape Breton settings are in Bb and C, split half and half between airs and jigs. The 6/8 march doesn’t really exist in Cape Breton fiddle music. Indeed, they’ve only recently started pointing their jigs (Jerry Holland, for example, played them dead straight).
Cape Breton is a lot more well-known for its music than the Scottish Borders, so that’s why so many settings here follow the Cape Breton way with the tune. Being a Borderer, however, I play the tune as a 6/8 march on A (and D).

Re: Blue Bonnets Over The Border

Played this quite recently: it was first tune in a set of 3 "jigs". My immediate reaction was, having heard it played and sung elsewhere, "This has to be a dotted 6/8 march": so we played it as such, then just up-tempoed for the 2 following tunes, which were indeed jigs!