“Coilsfield House” C: Nathaniel Gow
~ from the playing of fiddler Mike MacDougall, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Canada…
“Coilsfield House” ~ The Fiddler’s Companion ~ Andrew Kuntz
http://www.ibiblio.org/fiddlers/ ~ & for another transcription:
COILSFIELD HOUSE. Scottish, Strathspey ("Slowly") or “Pastoral” Air (4/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning. AAB. The air was composed by Nathaniel Gow (1763-1831), the fourth son of famed Scottish fiddle-composer Niel Gow. It was named after the home of Colonel Hugh Montgomery (1749-1819), Earl of Eglinton, in the parish of Tarbolton, Ayrshire. Neil (1991) explains the name "Coilsfield" apparently derives from the grave of King Coil, reputed to lie somewhere near the mansion house. Coil, or sometimes Coilus or Coel Hen, was a British king in the Roman or post-Roman era who was linked to the Strathclyde area; his name comes down to us in modern times in the nursery rhyme “Old King Cole.” The property was once known as "Quillisfield" and was so named in the charter of John De Graham, who assigned the property to the monks of Melrose. Around 1640 it was acquired by James Montgomery, 4th son of Alexander, 6th Earl of Eglinton, and remained in the family for 250 years. His descendent Colonel Hugh Montgomery (or Montgomerie) was himself an amateur fiddler and Scottish music enthusiast and also was honored as the dedicatee of Niel Gow’s Fourth Collection. The mansion was well-known to the poet Robert Burns when he dwelt at Lochlea, for it was where he went to meet his Highland Mary, Mary Campbell, then residing as a dairymaid at Coilsfield Housse. It is where "Summer first unfaulds her robes," and where "they langest tarry,” said he. His romance was short-lived however, for while they were lovers in the Spring, by October, 1786, Mary had died of a fever caught while waiting on a sick boy, her brother.
Ye banks and braes and streams around the Castle o’ Montgomerie,
Green be your woods and fair your flours, your waters never dumlie!
There simmer first unfauld her robes, and there the longest tarry;
For there I took the last farewell o’ my sweet Highland Mary…
It would be great to see some other transcriptions for this lovely tune. I may chase at least one other up to add later…
High Level Ranters version
The following transcription is from the playing of The High Level Ranters on track 17 of the CD ‘The Northumbrian Small Pipes’
T: Coilsfield House
K: D major
de ||: f2 A2 d2 F2 | D6 ef | g2 e2 f2 d2 | ce-e2 A3g | gfed dcBA | d4 B2 GE | F2 d2 E2 c>c | d4 D2 :||
fg ||: a3b a2 f2 | b4 e2 fg | a2 d2 c2 d>f | edcB A2 g>g | f2 d2 A2 F2 | G2 AB E4 -| 2/4 E2 AG | 4/4 F2 d2 E2 c>c | d4 D2 :||
The version added by me (mcgill) is taken note for note from "The Neil Gow Collection of Scottish Dance Music" and more accurately represents the Patrick Ball version.
X: 4 “Coilsfield House”
For D-limited instruments, with some other possibilities too…
‘c’: is that ‘C’ supposed to be a ‘c’ ?
Thanks. Every now and again I hear this, then remember why I don’t play it but never get round to working something out.
Thanks David, appreciated, I screwed up there, now properly adjusted for the D-limited…
Coilsfield House, X:6
This setting combines elements from the first and simplest version I found as a part of the "Sheehan’s Reel Set" on cbsession.org and some of the embellishments from ceolachan’s fine version. The more I listen to Gow compositions, the more I love them - both Niel and Nathaniel.
Coilsfield House, X:7
I have just added this version from Andrew Kunst’s Fiddlers’ Companion, see links above, by copying the abc straight across to The Session. This is presumably closer to the published version. The ties and other ornaments may suggest to fiddlers and others how the tune was originally intended to be played.
Certainly slow with expression. Attend to that fermata, perhaps the last time round.