Castles In The Air hornpipe

Also known as The Ball Of Kirriemuir, Bonny Jane, Bonny Jean, Bonny Jean Of Aberdeen, Wee Willie Winkie, Wee Willie Winkle.

There are 7 recordings of this tune.

Castles In The Air appears in 2 other tune collections.

Castles In The Air has been added to 37 tunebooks.

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One setting

X: 1
T: Castles In The Air
R: hornpipe
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
G2GB D2(3DEF|GFGA B4|cBce dBGA|BcBA G2:|
d2|e2eg d3B|cBcd B4|cBce dBAG|ABAG E2(3DEF|
G2GB D2(3DEF|GFGA B4|cBce dBGA|BcBA G2:|

Nine comments

From the Neil Mulligan CD An Cobair Gle. He credits learning the tune from Seamus Ennis who got the tune from his granfather when (the grandfather) was in Scotland.

In the liner notes he credits the tune to James Ballantine and says that it is now a well known Scottish childrens song called, ‘Wee Willie Winkie’.

Castles In The Air

Apart from the "Wee Willie Winkie" song, there’s a song called "Castles In the Air" which is all about a young boy by the hearthside and seeing images in the smoke: it’s said he was building castles in the air. It was contributed to a quite important Scottish song collection called Whistlebinkie began in 1832.

The tune is said to have been a slightly altered version of an old tune called "Bonny Jean".

Ennis played this tune, as well as another tune from the Hebrides Neil M also recorded, in Eamonn de Butleir’s wonderful documentary film ‘Miles and Miles of Music’ about Ennis’ days as a collector. The video of which I recall watching with Neillidh a number of times during the 80s.

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Ennis also sang a verse of ‘Castles in the Air’ in the same fillum by the way

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fillum ~ I love the vernacular creeping in kilfarboy…it makes me long for that ‘home’…

Less salubriously …

Other words to this melody concerned the fate of ‘The four and twenty vigins, came down from Inverness’
Sung with gusto by national servicemen in Malaya fifty years back … and probably by servicemen and rugby clubs for a long time before that.

Castles in the Air

Oh yes, Alancorsini - "The Ball of Kirriemuir". I’d forgotten about that infamous song sung to this tune.

"Castles in the Air" ~ Andrew Kuntz’s ‘The Fiddler’s Companion’

"CASTLES IN THE AIR. AKA and see "Wee Willie Winkie/Winkle." English, Scottish, Irish; Reel, Schottische or Slow Strathspey. A Major (Roche): G Major (Raven): E Flat Major (Hardie). Standard. AB (Hardie, Kennedy): ABB (Roche): AABB (Cole). The tune is associated with the children’s rhyme "Wee Willie Winkie/Winkle." ~ "

Watch your winkies and winkles Dow and don’t forget to dot your ayes! 😉