Tunes with a Bass

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Most of the tunes here are all from a single source: a collection from around 1780 by F. Linley, Six Solos for the German Flute with a Bass for the Violoncello or Harpsichord Ad Libitum, Composed in a Familiar Style for the Amusement of Juvenile Performers. The Scottish tunes are used as interludes.

All are Lowland songs from the early 18th century, except for Roslin Castle, which was first printed by William McGibbon as an instrumental air under the title The House of Glams around 1740 and shortly afterwards by James Oswald under its usual name. All these tunes were reprinted many times during the 18th century; the first two are still often played today.

Tho' for Seven Long Years was the title of a song by Allan Ramsay to a tune better known as Bannocks of Bear Meal. This set of variations is from Burk Thumoth's Twelve Scotch and Twelve Irish Airs with Variations of 1745-6. Because of its size, I've given a different selection of file formats than usual in this collection. I have reproduced but not interpreted the original figured-bass marks.

The large set of variations of The Lee Rig (a tune which seems to have brought out the megalomaniac in every Scots musician who tried it) is from John Brysson's A Curious Selection of Tunes with Variations of around 1800. Again, I've given a different selection of formats - there's no point in a full score when the bass is the same for the theme and all the variations.

ABC tune file

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Old Scottish Flute Music
Copyright © 2003, Jack Campin