The Spey In Spate reel

By James Scott Skinner

Also known as Da Spey In Spate, John Stewart’s, Spey And Spate, The Spey In A Spate, The Spey In The Spate.

There are 79 recordings of this tune.

This tune has been recorded together with

The Spey In Spate appears in 3 other tune collections.

The Spey In Spate has been added to 23 tune sets.

The Spey In Spate has been added to 259 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Two settings

X: 1
T: The Spey In Spate
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
D2FD A,DFA|dDcD BDAf|gefd ecdB|AFGE DABc|
d/d/dfd AdFA|DFAd fagf|e/e/ege BeGB|CEAc egfe|
d/d/dfd AdFA|DFAd fagf|gefd ecdB|AFGE D4|
X: 2
T: The Spey In Spate
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:d2 fd AdFA|DFAd fagf|e2 ge BAED|CEAc egfe|
d2 cd AdFA|DFAd fagf|gefd ecdB|1 AFGE FDFA:|2 AFGE FDDE||

Eight comments

Earlier recordings

A Scott Skinner tune recorded by Sean McGuire ,on Fiddle, on a `78 about 1954 and also on his superb MUSIC OF IRELAND album in 1960.

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Frankie Gavin: Live at Glor (2003-2004 Collection)

The NE English band The High Level Ranters played this reel along with the Shetland tune Da Tusca, on their 1969 LP “The Lads Of Northumbria”. This was produced by Topic Records, but has apparently not been reissued as a CD.

Re: The Spey In Spate

Just curious, how did this tune become so popular compared to other Skinner tunes?

Re: The Spey In Spate

Well, in my opinion anyway, it’s a particularly good Skinner tune. There are others like “The Baker” which could be comparable in popularity. But it’s a reel in D, which makes it easy for Irish instruments to play. It’s also very popular in Donegal, where you’ll also find other Skinner tunes like “The Ironman” and “The Spinning Wheel” (“The Flood on the Holm”). I suspect it spread to Owrish trad from Donegal, or from Sean McGuire, who was a very well-known Irish fiddler who recorded many Scottish tunes as well.

Re: The Spey In Spate

It’s a very good tune that can take a lot of variation and still be recognisable. Obviously a fiddle tune but works well on the flute, as is ably demonstrated by Matt Molloy on Kenny’s clip. A flute player acquaintance of mine plays this as the lead off on a set of (obviously) fiddle tunes folded for the flute: Spey in Spate – Trip to Windsor – The Shetland Fiddler – Big John MacNeil.