Tipsy Courting

Track Listing

  1. Peggy Gordon
  2. Ploughman Laddies
  3. Mormond Braes
  4. Banks of Red Roses
  5. Hey Donal
  6. Generations of Change
  7. Nicky Tams
  8. Mill o Tifty’s Annie
  9. Flo’er o Northumberland
  10. McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie
  11. Reres Hill

Peggy Gordon

Oh Peggy Gordon, you are my darling
Come sit ye doon upon my knee
And tell tae me, the very reason
Why I am slighted so by thee

I am in love I cannot deny it
My heart lies troubled in my breast
It’s not for me to let the world know it
A troubled heart can know no rest.

I put my head to a cask of brandy
It was my fancy so to do
For when I’m drinking, I’m seldom thinking
Just wishing Peggy Gordon was here.

I wish I was away in Ingol
Far across the brimy sea
Sailing over the deepest ocean
Where love and care can’t bother me.

I wish I was in a lonely valley
Where womankind can not be found
And all the small birds, they change their voices
And every moment a different sound.

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Ploughman Laddies

Doon yonder den there’s a ploughman lad
One summer’s day he’ll be aa my ain

And sing laddie aye, and sing laddie oh
The ploughman laddies are aa the go.

I love his teeth and I love his skin
I love the very cart he hurles in

Doon yonder den I could’ve gotten a miller
But the smell o dust would have daen me ill

Doon yonder den I could’ve gotten a merchant
But aa his goods werena worth a groat

I see him comin through the toon
Wi aa his ribbons hinging roon and roon

And noo she’s gotten her plooman lad
As bare as ever he left the ploo.

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Mormond Braes

As I gaed doon tae Strichen toon
I met a fair maid mourning
She was makin sair complaint
For her true love ne’re returning
It’s Mormond Braes where heather grows
Where aft times I’ve been cheery
Mormond Braes where heather grows
It’s there that I lost my dearie.

So fare thee weel ye Mormond Braes
Where aft times I’ve been cheery
Fare ye weel ye Mormond Braes
It was there that I lost my dearie.

But I’ll pit on my goon o green
It’s a forsaken token
That will let the other lads know
That the bands of love are broken.
There’s mony the horse has snapper’t and fa’en
Risen again fu rarely
Many’s the lass has lost her lad
And gotten anither richt early

There’s as guid fish intil the sea
As ever yet were taken
I’ll cast my line and try again
For I’m only aince forsaken
And I’ll ging doon tae Strichen toon
Far I was bred and born
And there I’ll get anither sweetheart
That’ll marry me the morn.

And if I see my love again
I’ll toss my head fu airily
Maybe he’ll see his mistake
And then he’ll wonder sairly.
But I will never look at him
Na na, I’ll be richt cheery
Fan I ging doon tae Strichen toon
Tae get anither dearie.

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Banks of Red Roses

When I was a wee thing and easy led astray
Afore I would work I would rather sport and play
Afore I would work I would rather sport and play
Wi my Jonny on the banks of red roses.

On the banks or red roses, my love and I sat doon
And he’s taen oot his fiddle to play his love a tune
In the middle of the tune, well, she sighed and she said
Oh my Jonny, lovely Jonny, dinna leave me.

They walked and they talked till the came into a cave
Where all night long her Jonny had been digging at her grave
Where all night long her Jonny had been digging at her grave
On the bonny, bonny banks of red roses.

Oh Jonny, lovely Jonny, that grave is not for me,
Oh yes, my darling Jeannie, that your bridal bed shall be
Oh yes, my darling Jeannie, that your bridal bed shall be
On the bonny, bonny banks of red roses.

Then he’s taen oot his penknife, and it was long and sharp
And he’s pierced it through and through, his bonny dearie’s heart
He’s pierced it through and through his bonny dearie’s heart
And he’s left her lying low among red roses.

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Hey Donal

As I cam ower Strathmartine Braes
Wha do ye think I seen
But a braw young piping laddie
Come a linkin ower the green
Singing Hey Donal, Ho Donal
Dirrime do a day.

He played a jig and he played a reel
He played a sweet Strathspey
He roosed my heart till its beat took time
Wi the tapping o my tae.

Now I’ve nae gowd tae offer you
I’ve gaithered little gear
But we’ll hae love and freedom
Gin ye’ll go wi me my dear

There’s gowd in the broom o the Sidlaw Hills
Honey fae the heather sweet
There’s a speckled trout in the hiddlin tarn
A carpet neath wir feet

Syne he’s taen up his chanter
And sic a string he played
That I chose love and freedom
Now we wander all wir days.

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Generations of Change
(Matt Armour)

My faither was a baillie for a wee fairm at Caipley
He worked on the land all the days o his life
By the time he made second he aye said he reckoned
He’d ploughed near on half o the East neuk of Fife
He fee’d on at Randerston, Crawhill and Cleppington
Cambo and Cambie and Big Rennie’s Hill,
At Kingsbarns he was married, at Boarhills he’s buried
But man had he lived he’d be ploughin on still

For those days were his days and those ways were his ways
To follow the plough while his back was still strong
But those days have passed and the time come at last
For the weakness of age to make way for the young.

I wasna for ploughin, to sea I was going
To follow the fish and the fisherman’s ways
In rain, hail or sunshine, I watched the long run-line
Nae man mair contented his whole working day
I’ve long-lined the fladden ground,
Dutch and the Doggerband
Pulled the big fish from the deep devil’s hole
I’ve side-trawled off Shetland, the Faroes and Iceland
In weather far worse than a body could thole.

For those days were my days and those ways were my ways
To follow the fish while my back was still strong
But those days have passed and the time come at last
For the weakness of age to make way for the young.

My sons they have grown and away they have gone
To search for black oil in the far northern sea
Like oilmen they walk and like Yankees they talk
There’s no much in common ‘tween my lads and me
They’ve rough-rigged on Josephine, Forties and Ninian
Claymore and Dunlin and Fisher and Awk,
They’ve made fortunes for sure, for in one run ashore
They spend more than I earned for my whole season’s work.

For these days are their days and these ways are their ways
To ride the rough rigs while their backs are still strong
But these days will pass and the time come at last
For the weakness of age to make way for the young.

My grandsons are growing, to school they’re soon going
The long weeks of summer they spend here with me
We walk through the warm days and talk of the old days
The corn and the codfish, the land and the sea
We walk through the fields that my father once tilled
Talk wi the old men who once sailed with me
Man it’s been awfy good, I’ve shown them all I could
Of the past and the present, what their future might be

For the morn will be their day, what will be their way
What will they make of the land, sea and sky
Man, I’ve seen awfy change, but it still seems gey strange
To look at my world through a young laddie’s eyes.

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Nicky Tams
(George Morrice)

Fan I was only ten year ald
I left the parish school
My faither fee’d me tae the Mains
Tae chaw his milk and meal
I first pulled on my narra breeks
Tae hap my spinnel trams
Syne I buckled roon my knappin knees
A pair o nicky tams.

First I gaed on for baillie’s loon
Syne I gaed on for third
Syne of course I had to get
The horseman’s grip and word
A loaf of breid tae be my piece
A bottle for drinking drams
But you canna ging through
The calf-hoose door
Without your nicky tams.

The fairmer I am wi’ aye noo
He’s wealthy but he’s mean
Though corn’s cheap his horse is thin
His harness fairly daen
He gars us fill his cairts ower fu’
His conscience has nae qualms
But fan briest-straps brak
There’s naething like a pair o nicky tams.

I’m courting bonnie Annie noo
Rob Tamson’s kitchie deem
She is five and forty and I’m but seventeen
She clorts a muckle piece tae me
Wi different kinds o jam
And tells me ilka nicht that she
Admires my nicky tams.

A started oot ae Sunday
The kirkie for tae gang
My collar it was unco tight
My breeks were nane ower lang
I had my bible in my pooch
Likewise my book of psalms
When Annie roared: "Ye muck gype,
Tak aff yer nicky tams."

Tho unco sweir I took them aff
The lassie for tae please
But aye my breeks were lirking up
Aroon aboot my knees
A wasp gaed crawling up my leg
In the middle o the psalms
So never again will I ging tae the kirk
Athoot my nicky tams.

I’ve often thocht I’d like tae be
A bobby on the force
Or maybe I’d get on the trams
Tae draw a pair o horse
Whatever it is my lot to be
The bobbies or the trams
I’ll never forget the happy days
I wore my nicky tams.

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Mill O Tifty’s Annie

At Mill of Tifty there lived a man
In the neighbourhood of Fyvie
And he had a lovely daughter dear
Wha’s name was bonnie Annie

Lord Fyvie had a trumpeter
By the name of Andrew Lammie
And had the airt to win the heart
Of Mill o Tifty’s Annie

Lord Fyvie he cam tae the mill
Where lived bonnie Annie
His trumpeter came him before
Even the same Andrew Lammie

Her mither cried her tae the door
Saying: "Come here to me my Annie,
Did ever you see a bonnier man
Than the trumpeter of Fyvie."

Nothing she said, but sighing so
Alas for bonnie Annie
She darena own, her heart was won
By the servant Andrew Lammie

That night, as aa gaed tae their beds
As sleepit sound but Annie
Love so repressed her tender breast
Thinking on Andrew Lammie

The first time my love and I met
‘Twas in the woods o Fyvie
He called me mistress, I said no
I was Tifty’s bonnie Annie

Her faither cam to hear o this
And a letter wrote to Fyvie
To say his daughter was bewitched
By the trumpeter o Fyvie

Lord Fyvie he cam tae the mill
Sayin: "What ails you, bonnie Annie?"
"Oh, it’s aa for love that I’m cast doon
For the love of Andrew Lammie."

"Oh Tifty, Tifty, gie consent
And let your dochter marry."
"Na, it’ll be tae ane o a higher degree
Than the servant Andrew Lammie."

"If she’d been born o as rich a kin
As she is rich in beauty
I wad hae taen the lass mysel
Aye and made her my ain lady."

"Oh Fyvie’s lands are far and wide
And they are wondrous bonnie,
But I wouldna trade my ain dear love
No for aa your lands o Fyvie."

At this her faither did her scorn
And likewise did her mither
Her sisters they did her disown
Ah, but wae’s me for her brither.

Her brither struck her wondrous o’er
Wi cruel blows and mony
He’s broke her back on the templestane
Aa for likin Andrew Lammie

O faither, mither, sisters, aa
While sae cruel tae yer Annie
My heart was broken first by love
Now my brother’s broke my body.

Oh mither, mither, mak my bed
And turn my head to Fyvie
It’s there I’ll lie, and there I’ll die
For the servant, Andrew Lammie.

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Flo’er O Northumberland

A provost’s daughter was walking her lane
Oh but her love it was easy won
When she heard an auld prisoner making his mane
Aye and she was the flo’er o Northumberland

"Oh gin a young lassie would bother wi me"
Oh but her love, it was easy won
"I would mak her a day o high degree
If she’d loosen me oot o my prison sae strang."

So the lassie’s gaed doon tae her faither’s stable
Oh but her love, it was easy won
And she’s taken a horse that was baith fleet and able
And she’s loosened him oot frae his prison sae strang.

But while they were riding across the Scotch moor
Oh but her love, it was easy won
He said: "Get doon frae my horse,
You’re a brazen-faced whore,
And ye’d better gang hame tae Northumberland."

"It’s cook in your kitchen I surely can dae,
Oh though my love, it was easy won,
I would wait at your kitchen and serve your lady
For I canna ging hame tae Northumberland."

"Na cook in my kitchen ye canna weel dee,
Oh but your love, it was easy won
For my wife willna hae such a lassie as ye
So ye’d better bang hame tae Northumberland."

So laith though he was, the lassie tae tine,
Oh but her love, it was easy won
He’s bought an old horse, he’s feed an auld man
And he’s sent her back hame tae Northumberland

Noo when she gaed hame her faither did froon
And said: "Oh but your love, it was easy won
Tae be a Scotch whore when you’re only saxteen
And you were the flo’er of Northumberland."

But when she gaed in, her mither did smile
And said: "Oh but your love it was easy won,
Aye but your no’ the first that the Scots hae beguiled
And you’re aye the fair flo’er of Northumberland."

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McFarlane o The Sprots o Burnieboosie
(Words: George Bruce; Melody: Wilie Kemp)

Afore that I be tyraneesed as I this while hae been
I’d raither rin frae here tae Birse
Wi peas in baith my sheen
I’d raither dee for wint o breath
Than pine for wint o love
And it’s aa because McFarlane married Susie.
Noo Susie’s kankered faither and mine could never ‘gree
And I fan I’d ging ower that gate
He’d hing his dog at me,
So I sent my friend McFarlane roond tae see fit he could dae,
McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie.

I dinna like McFarlane, I’m safe enough tae state
His lug would cast a shadow ower a sax fit gate
He’s saft as ony gorblin and sliddery as a skate
McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie.

McFarlane spak nae word for me but plenty for himsel
He reesed the lassie’s barley scones
Her kibbuk and her cail
Till her faither cried oot "Sprotty man, you should try yer luck yersel"
Tae McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie
Though McFarlane is the grimmest chiel
For twenty mile aroon
Though they buy his photograph tae fleg the rottens frae the toon
He kittled up his spunk at this
And spiered gin she’d come doon
Tae be mistress of the Sprots o Burnieboosie.

I dinna like McFarlane, I tell it’s a fact
He’s a nose for splittin hailstanes and humphy back
He’s legs like gutteperka, ilka step his knees gang knack
McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie

He said he wis baith able, tae play at coup the ladle
Wi a ledder ower a treacle cask
And ca the churn forbye,
Anither o his winners wis sawdust mixed wi cinners
Was the spice for mettin hens at Burnieboosie
An educated ostrich frae the zoo at Timbuctoo
He had for scrattin up his neeps
So he hidna them tae pu’
I never hear the like o that come oot o ony mou’
But McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie.

I dinna like McFarlane, it’s awfu but it’s true
A pewter speen was tint in Jock McFarlane’s mou’
He couldna weel be grimmer, taks his porridge wi a skimmer
McFarlane o the Sprots o Burnieboosie.

Oh a dirl o the teethache’s nae particularly sweet
But love’s the only pain on earth that ever gart me greet
It’s just like kittley chilblains
Roon yer heart instead o your feet
It was aggravated by the sicht of Susie
Noo friends and kind philosophers
Ye’ve heard what me befell
Never lippen tae the middle man
But dae yer work yersel
Or I’ll bet my hindmost sark that
Ye’re a day ahint the market
As was I when I sent McFarlane roon tae Susie.

I dinna like McFarlane, I’m fairly aff o Jock
I dinna like McFarlane nor McFarlane’s folk
May Susie be nae turtle, but brings the tangs or spurtle
Doon ower the heid o Jock o Burnieboosie.

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Reres Hill

Last year at Lady Mary’s fair, when I was in Dundee
I feel in with an old sweetheart
And he being on the spree
His company I did accept, and with him I did go
All to my sad misfortune for it proved my overthrow.

We wandered east, we wandered west
We wandered roond the Law
He said he’d see me home that night
But home I never saw
He kept beside me all the while
Resolved to have his will
And by and by we lost our way
At the back of Reres Hill.

And when we cam to Reres Hill
The laddie says to me,
We can’t go home tonight my dear
It’s far ower late you see
But the night is warm and in my pooch
I have another gill
So we can lie down here content
At the back of Reres Hill.

We hid anither nip apiece,
Tae quieten oor alarm
When I awoke in the morning
We were locked in each other’s arms
He handed me the bottle
Anither glass tae fill
And I drank his health and store o wealth
At the back o Reres Hill.

And then the laddie says to me,
“Oh lassie, dinna mourn,
For while I draw the breath o life
From you I’ll never turn
If you will go to yonder town
My wedded wife to be
We’ll be the happiest couple yet
Was ever in Dundee.”

Now may I never prosper and may I never thrive
In anything I take in hand, as long as I’m alive
If e’er I say I rue the day, my laddie had his will
Success tae Lady Mary’s fair, and the back o Reres Hill.

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