Gaelic songs for Scotland Sings

The following traditional Gaelic songs come from the forthcoming publication Òrain Cèilidh Teaghlaich (The Family Cèilidh Gaelic Song Collection), compiled by Brian Ó hEadhra, published by Anam Communications.

This selection has been commissioned for TRACS (Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland), who are providing song resources for Scotland Sings 2012, edited by Steve Byrne. The songs are listed in Gaelic followed by a description and then an English translation.

Read Brian’s introduction to the world of Gaelic singing.

Song index:

  1. Bha mi Latha Samhraidh an Steòrnabhagh
  2. Bheir Mi Ò
  3. Bidh Clann Ulaidh
  4. Brochan Lom
  5. Chì Mi Na Mòr Bheanna
  6. Far am bi mi Fhìn
  7. Fear a’ Bhàta
  8. Hè Mandu
  9. Hè mo Leannan
  10. Ho Ro Mo Nighean Donn Bhòidheach
  11. O Teannaibh Dlùth is Togaibh Fonn
  12. ’S Ann an Ìle
  13. Seallaibh Curaich Eòghainn

Bha mi Latha Samhraidh an Steòrnabhagh

Sèist:
Bha mi latha samhraidh an Steòrnabhagh
Chunna’ mi rud ann agus chòrd e rium
Nighean bheag a’ danns’ air a casan lom
Ribeanan na ceann agus cleòc oirre

Thàinig balach uasal is “Lorns” air
Thuirt e rith’, “A luaidh, cuir do bhrògan ort
Gus an tèid sinn cuairt dhan a’ Ghearraidh Chruaidh
’S dìridh mi suas Beinn na Dròbha leat”

“Cha tèid mise cuairt chun na dròbha leat
Ged a tha thu uasal is brògan ort
B’ aill leam a bhith danns’ air mo chasan lom
Le fear a chluicheadh tromb no meileòidian”

Bha mi Latha Samhraidh an Steòrnabhagh
’S e òran àghmor a tha seo stèidhichte ann am baile Steòrnabhaigh. Nach eil e math gum b’ fheàrr leis an nighean san òran danns’ a dhèanamh leis am fear air an tromb no meleoidian na am fear uasal!
This is a cheery song based in the town of Stornoway. Isn’t it grand that the lass in the song would prefer to dance with the lad on the jew’s harp or melodeon rather than the noble lad.

Listen to a version at the BBC’s Bliadhna nan Òran website:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/bha_mi_latha_samhraidh_an_steornabhagh/

Bha mi Latha Samhraidh an Steòrnabhagh

Chorus:
One summer’s day I was in Stornoway
I saw something there that appealed to me
A little girl dancing on her bare feet
Ribbons in her hair and a cloak on her

A noble boy came wearing “Lorns”
He said to her, “Dear, put your shoes on
That we may go for a walk to the Castle grounds
And I’ll climb up Bennadrove with you”

“I’ll go for no walk to the drove with you
Although you are noble and wear shoes
I’d prefer to dance on my bare feet
With one who’d play a jew’s harp or accordion

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Bheir Mi Ò

Sèist:
Bheir mi ò hù ho-ò
Bheir mi ò-o hù o hì
Bheir mi o-hu o-o hò
’S mi fo bhròn ’s tu gam dhìth

’S iomadh oidhche fhliuch fhuar
Ghabh mi cuairt ’s mi leam fhìn
Gus an d’ ràinig mise an t-àit’
Far ’n robh gràdh geal mo chrìdh’

Dheanainn treabhadh, dheanainn buain
Chumainn suas thu gun strì
’S bheirinn às a’ ghreabhal chruaidh
Dha mo luaidh teachd-an-tìr.

Ged nach eil sinn fhathast pòst’
Tha min dòchas gum bi
Fhad ’s a mhaireas mo dhà dhòrn
Cha bhi lòn oirnn a dhìth.

Bheir Mi Ò
Òran eireachdail de ghaol neo-dhìolta. Bidh an luchd-èisteachd an-còmhnaidh toilichte seinn air an t-sèist.
A beautiful song of unrequited love. This song always gets the audience singing along in the chorus.

Also known as Gràdh Geal Mo Chrìdhe

Listen to versions at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website :
Sung by Calum Johnston of Barra in 1954
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/85814/1

Sung by Nan MacKinnon of Vatersay in 1958
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/88482/1

Bheir Mi Ò

Chorus:
Bheir mi o hu ho-o
Bheir mi o-o hu o hi
Bheir mi o-hu o-o ho
And sorrowful I am feeling without you

Many’s a wet and cold night
I took a walk by myself
Until I’d reach the place
Where was my heart’s bright love was

I would plough and reap
I would provide for you without any difficulty
And I would take from the hard gravel
For my love – our livelihood

Although we are not yet married
I hope we shall be
For as long as I have my two hands
We shall not lack food

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Bidh Clann Ulaidh

Bidh Clann Ulaidh, laoigh ’s a lurain
Bidh Clann Ulaidh air do bhanais
Bidh Clann Ulaidh, laoigh ’s a lurain
Dèanamh an danns’ air do bhanais

Sèist:
Bidh Clann a’ Rìgh, bidh Clann a’ Rìgh
Bidh Clann a’ Righ air do bhanais
Bidh Clann a’ Rìgh seinn air a’ phìob
Òlar am fìon air do bhanais

Bidh Clann Amhlaidh na fir ghreannmhor
Bidh Clann Amhlaidh air do bhanais
Bidh Clann Amhlaidh na fir ghreannmhor
Dèanamh an danns’ air do bhanais

Bidh Clann Choinnich nam feachd soilleir
Bidh Clann Choinnich air do bhanais
Bidh Clann Choinnich nam feachd soilleir
Dèanamh an danns’ air do bhanais

Bidh Clann Dhòmhnaill tha cha neònach
Bidh Clann Dhòmhnaill air do bhanais
Bidh Clann Dhòmhnaill tha cha neònach
Dèanamh an danns’ air do bhanais

Bidh Clann Ulaidh
Seo tàladh far an cluinn sinn gum bi bannais ann agus gum bi diofar chinnidh agus muinntir Ulaidh an làthair. Nach eil e inntinneach am mion-chunntas a th’ aige air na cinnidhean Albanach.
A lullaby that describes a wedding which will be attended by various clans and Ulster folk. It’s interesting how each of the clans are described.

Listen to versions at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:
Sung by Annie Arnott of Skye in 1963:
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/28442/1

Sung by Derick S. Thomson of Lewis in 1951:
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/62334/1

Bidh Clann Ulaidh

The children of Ulster, calves and handsome men
The children of Ulster will be at your wedding
The children of Ulster, calves and handsome men
Will be dancing at your wedding

Chorus:
The king’s children, the King’s children
The king’s children will be at your wedding
The king’s children – the pipes will be played
Wine will be drunk at your wedding

The children of MacAulay, lively and active
The children of MacAulay will be at your wedding
The clan MacAulay, lively and active
will be dancing at your wedding

The children of Mackenzie, the shining host
The children of Mackenzie will be at your wedding
The children of Mackenzie, the shining host
will be dancing at your wedding

The children of MacDonald, they’re so strange
The children of MacDonald will be at your wedding
The children of MacDonald, they’re so strange
will be dancing at your wedding

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Brochan Lom

Sèist:
Brochan lom, tana lom, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan lom, tana lom, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan lom, tana lom, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan lom ’s e tana lom ’s e brochan lom na sùghain

Brochan tana, tana, tana, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan tana, tana, tana, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan tana, tana, tana, brochan lom na sùghain
Brochan lom ’s e tana lom ’s e brochan lom na sùghain

Thugaibh aran dha na gillean leis a’ bhrochan sùghain
Thugaibh aran dha na gillean leis a’ bhrochan sùghain
Thugaibh aran dha na gillean leis a’ bhrochan sùghain
Brochan lom ’s e tana lom ’s e brochan lom na sùghain

Seo an rud a gheibheamaid o nighean gobh’ an duine
Seo an rud a gheibheamaid o nighean gobh’ an duine
Seo an rud a gheibheamaid o nighean gobh’ an duine
Brochan lom ’s e tana lom, ’s e brochan lom sùghain

Brochan Lom
Seo aon de na h-òran Gàidhlig as ainmeil san t-saoghal. Cò shaoileadh gum biodh brochan cho tlachdmhor!
This is one of the most recognised Gaelic songs known across the world. Who would have thought that porridge would prove so popular!

Listen a version at the Am Baile website:
http://www.ambaile.com/en/item/item_audio.jsp?item_id=24493

Calum Kennedy on YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rQrZxMUNAr8

Brochan Lom

Chorus:
Thin porridge, sparse and thin, thin and watery porridge
Thin porridge, sparse and thin, thin and watery porridge
Thin porridge, sparse and thin, thin and watery porridge
Thin porridge, it is sparse and thin, it is thin and watery porridge

Sparse porridge, sparse, sparse, thin and watery porridge
Sparse porridge, sparse, sparse, thin and watery porridge
Sparse porridge, sparse, sparse, thin and watery porridge
Thin porridge, it is sparse and thin, it is thin and watery porridge

Give bread to the lads with the watery porridge
Give bread to the lads with the watery porridge
Give bread to the lads with the watery porridge
Thin porridge, it is sparse and thin, it is thin and watery porridge

This is the thing to get from the blacksmith’s daughter
This is the thing to get from the blacksmith’s daughter
This is the thing to get from the blacksmith’s daughter
Thin porridge, it is sparse and thin, it is thin and watery porridge

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Chì mi na Mòr-bheanna

Sèist:
Ò chì, chì mi na mòr-bheanna
Ò chì, chì mi na còrr-bheanna
Ò chì, chì mi na coireachan
Chì mi na sgoran fo cheò

Chì mi gun dàil an t-àite san d’ rugadh mi
Cuirear orm fàilte sa chànain a thuigeas mi
Gheibh mi ann aoidh agus gràdh nuair a ruigeam
Nach reicinn air tunnachan òir

Chì mi na coilltean, chì mi na doireachan
Chì mi ann màghan bàna is toraiche
Chì mi na fèidh air làr nan coireachan
Falaicht’ an trusgan de cheò

Beanntaichean àrda is àillidh leacainnean
Sluagh ann an còmhnaidh is còire cleachdainnean
’S aotrom mo cheum a’ leum gam faicinn
Is fanaidh mi tacan le deòin

Fàgaidh mi ùbraid, sùrd agus glagarsaich
Dh’fhaicinn an fhuinn an an cluinnteadh a’ chagarsaich
Fàgaidh mi cùirtean dùint’ agus salach
A dh’amharc air gleannaibh nam bò

Fàilt’ air na gorm-mheallaibh, tholmach, thulachnach
Fàilt’ air na còrr-bheannaibh mòra, mulanach
Fàilt’ air na coilltean, is fàilt’ air na h-uile
O! ’s sona bhith fuireach nan coir

Chì Mi Na Mòr Bheanna
Ann an 1856 sgrìobh Iain Camshron à Baile Chaolais an t-òran suaicheanta seo a tha moladh a’ Ghàidhealtachd is na Gàidheil. Chaidh a chluiche aig tòrradh Rìgh Seoras VI agus cuideachd aig tòrradh a’ Chinn-suidhe I.F. Ceannadach.
This iconic song praising the Highlands and Highlanders was written in 1856 by John Cameron of Ballachulish. It was played at the funeral of King George VI and as a lament at President John F. Kennedy’s funeral.

Listen to some versions at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:
Portree Gaelic Choir in 1963
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/73404/1
Donnie MacIndeor of Islay in 1970: http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/31078/3

Chì Mi Na Mòr-Bheanna

Chorus:
O, I see, I see the great mountains
O, I see, I see the lofty mountains
O, I see, I do see the corries
I see the mist-covered peaks

I see as I linger the land of my birth
I am welcomed in the language I understand
I will receive hospitality and love when I reach it
That I’d trade not for tons of gold

I see there woods, and I see there thickets
I see there the fair and most fertile of meadows
I see there the deer on the ground of the corries
Shrouded in a garment of mist

Lofty mountains and resplendent slopes
There dwell my own folk, kind folk of honour
Light is my step as I go bounding up to meet them
’Tis with pleasure I’ll stay there a while

I’ll leave the uproar and clangour of industry
To see the land where a whisper is audible
I’ll leave the claustrophobic, dirty back-courts
To gaze upon the cattle in the glen

Hail to the blue-green grassy knolls
Hail to the great peaked hummocky mountains
Hail to the forests, hail to all there
Content I would live there forever

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Far Am Bi Mi Fhìn

Sèist:
Far am bi mi fhìn is ann a bhios mo dhòchas
Far am bi mi fhìn is ann a bhios mo dhòchas
Far am bi mi fhìn is ann a bhios mo dhòchas
Far am bi mi fhìn bidh mo dhòchas ann

Thèid mi fhìn is Sìne null gu taigh a’ phìobair
Thèid mi fhìn is Sìne null gu taigh a’ phìobair
Thèid mi fhìn is Sìne null gu taigh a’ phìobair
’S nì sinn brod an ruidhle leinn fhìn air an làr

’S mur toir am pìobair port dhuinn airson ruidhle
’S mur toir am pìobair port dhuinn airson ruidhle
’S mur toir am pìobair port dhuinn airson ruidhle
’S ann a bheir sinn sgrìob chun an fhìdhlear bhàn

Siubhal air na cladaichean ’s a’ coiseachd air a’ ghainmhich
Siubhal air na cladaichean ’s a’ coiseachd air a’ ghainmhich
Siubhal air na cladaichean ’s a’ coiseachd air a’ ghainmhich
Far am bi mi fhìn bidh mo dhòchas ann

Far am bi mi Fhìn
Seo puirt-a-beul sona far a bheil balach is Sìne a-muigh air splaoid. ’S e Am Piobar Òlta ainm an fhuinn.
This is a happy puirt-a-beul (mouth music) in which the protagonists are in search of a great night out. The tune is often referred to as the The Drunken Piper.

Listen to some versions at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:

Bowmore Junior Choir in 1983:
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/90948/4

Alex Hector MacPhail of Tiree in 1958
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/100038/1

and at the BBC’s Bliadhna nan Òran website:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/far_am_bi_mi_fhin/

Far Am Bi Mi Fhìn

Chorus:
Where I will be is where my hope lies
Where I will be is where my hope lies
Where I will be is where my hope lies
Where I will be my hope lies

Sheena and I will go to the piper’s house
Sheena and I will go to the piper’s house
Sheena and I will go to the piper’s house
And we will dance a choice reel by ourselves on the floor

And if the piper doesn’t play us a tune for the reel
And if the piper doesn’t play us a tune for the reel
And if the piper doesn’t play us a tune for the reel
We’ll head off to see the fair fiddler

Travelling the shores and walking on the sand
Travelling the shores and walking on the sand
Travelling the shores and walking on the sand
Where I will be my hope lies

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Fear a’ Bhàta

Sèist:
Fhir a’ bhàta, na hòro eile
Fhir a’ bhàta, na hòro eile
Fhir a bhàta, na hòro eile
Mo shoraidh slàn leat ’s gach àit’ an téid thu

’S tric mi sealltainn on chnoc as àirde
Dh’fheuch am faic mi fear a’ bhàta
An tig thu ’n-diugh na ’n tig thu màireach
’S mar tig thu idir gur truagh a tha mi

Tha mo chridhe-sa briste brùite
’S tric na deòir a’ ruith o m’ shùilean
An tig thu nochd na ’m bi mo dhùil riut
Na ’n dùin mi ’n doras le osna thùrsaich?

’S tric mi faighneachd de luchd nam bàta
Am fac’ iad thu na ’m bheil thu sàbhailt
Ach ’s ann a tha gach aon dhiubh ’g ràitinn
Gur gòrach mise ma thug mi gràdh dhut

Gheall mo leannan dhomh gùn dhen t-sìoda
Gheall e siud agus breacan rìomhach
Fàinn’ òir anns am faicinn ìomhaigh
Ach ’s eagal leam gun dèan e dìochuimhn’

Ged a thuirt iad gun robh thu aotrom
Cha do lùghdaich siud mo ghaol ort
Bidh tu m’ aisling anns an oidhche
Is anns a’ mhadainn bidh mi gad fhaighneachd

Thug mi gaol dhut ’s chan fhaod mi àicheadh
Cha ghaol bliadhna ’s cha ghaol ràithe
Ach gaol a thòisich nuair bha mi ’m phàiste
’S nach searg a chaoidh gus an claoidh am bàs mi

Tha mo chàirdean gu tric ag innseadh
Gum feum mi d’ aogas a leig’ air dìochuimhn’
Ach tha ’n comhairle dhomh cho dìomhain
’S bi tilleadh mara ’s i toirt lìonaidh

Bidh mi tuille tùrsach deurach
Mar eala bhàn ’s i an dèidh a reubadh
Guileag bàis aic’ air lochan feurach
Is càch gu lèir an dèidh a trèigeadh

Fear a’ Bhàta
Sgrìobh Sìne NicFhionnlaigh à Tunga an t-òran a tha seo san 19mh linn. ’S e òran gaoil a th’ ann, làn faireachdainn, a sgrìobh i airson Dòmhnall MacRàth à Ùige agus tha e coltach gun do phòs iad greis às dèidh sin.
This song was written in the late 19th century by Sìne NicFhionnlaigh (Jean Finlayson) from Tong, Lewis. This emotional love song was written for Dòmhnall MacRath (Donald Macrae) from Uig, Lewis and it is believed that the couple were married not long after the song was composed.

Listen to versions at the BBC’s Bliadhna nan Òran and Beag air Bheag websites:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/fear_a_bhata
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/foghlam/beag_air_bheag/songs/song_03/index.shtml

Also at the Am Baile project:
http://www.ambaile.org.uk/en/item/item_audio.jsp?item_id=21380

Fear a’ Bhàta

Chorus:
Oh my boatman, na hòro eile
Oh my boatman, na hòro eile
Oh my boatman, na hòro eile
My farwell to you wherever you go

I often look from the highest hill
that I might see, oh boatman
Will you come tonight, or will you come tomorrow
Oh sorry will I be if you do not come at all

My heart is broken, bruised
Often tears are running down from my eyes
Will you come tonight, or will I wait up for you
Or close the door with a sad sigh?

I often ask of the boatmen
If they have seen you, if you are safe
But they all tell me
That I was foolish if I gave you love

My darling promised me a gown of silk
That and a fine plait
A golden ring in which I’d see a likeness
But I fear that he shall forget

Although they said you were flighty
That did not lessen my love for you
You are in my dreams at night
And in the morning I ask for you

I gave you love and cannot deny
It’s not love that lasts a year or a season
But a love that began when I was a child
And that will not wither until death do take me

My friends say often
That I must forget your image
But their counsel is as unfathomable to me
As is the returning tide

I am all too sad and tearful
Like a white swan that has been torn
Sounding her death-call on a small grassy loch
Having been forsaken by all

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Hè Mandu

Hèman dubh ’s truagh nach tigeadh
Hèman dubh siud gam iarraidh
Hèman dubh gille ’s litir
Hi ri o ro each ’s diallaid
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh ’s mise a dh’fhalbhadh
Hèman dubh null air sàile
Hèman dubh le mo leannan
Hi ri o ro ’s cha bhiodh dàil ann
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh nam bitheadh agam
Hèman dubh sgiath a’ ghlaisein
Hèman dubh iteag nan eòin
Hi ri o ro spòg na lachainn
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh iteag nan eòin
Hèman dubh spòg na lachainn
Hèman dubh shnàmhainn na caoil
Hi ri o ro air an tarsainn
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh shnàmhainn na caoil
Hèman dubh air an tarsainn
Hèman dubh an Cuan Ìleach
Hi ri o ro ’s an Caol Arcach
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh an Cuan Ìleach
Hèman dubh ’s an Caol Arcach
Hèman dubh ’s rachainn a-steach
Hi ri o ro chun a’ chaisteal
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh ’s rachainn a-steach
Hèman dubh chun a’ chaisteal
Hèman dubh ’s bheirinn a-mach
Hi ri o ro às mo leannan
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh ’s bheirinn a-mach
Hèman dubh às mo leannan
Hèman dubh ’s chan fhoighnichinn
Hi ri o ro cò bu leis i
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hè Mandu
’S e òran luaidh a tha seo far a bheil an neach ag innse dhuinn na rudan a dhèanadh e airson a bhith còmhla ri a luaidh a-rithist.
This is waulking song (sung when working the tweed) which describes the lengths and distances the lover would go to be with their partner.

Listen to a version at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:
Sung by Derick S. Thomson of Lewis in 1949
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/21230/1

Hèman Dubh

Hèman dubh it is sad
Hèman dubh that he wouldn’t come to get me
Hèman dubh a lad with a letter
Hi ri o ro a horse and a saddle
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh I would go
Hèman dubh across the sea
Hèman dubh with my lover
Hi ri o ro there would be no delay
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh if I had
Hèman dubh the wing of the sparrow
Hèman dubh the bird’s feather
Hi ri o ro the duck’s foot
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh the bird’s feather
Hèman dubh the duck’s foot
Hèman dubh I would swim the straits
Hi ri o ro crossways
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh I would swim the straits
Hèman dubh crossways
Hèman dubh the Sound of Islay
Hi ri o ro and the Pentland Firth
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh the Sound of Islay
Hèman dubh and the Pentland Firth
Hèman dubh I would go in
Hi ri o ro to the castle
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh I would go in
Hèman dubh to the castle
Hèman dubh and I would take
Hi ri o ro my lover out of it
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

Hèman dubh and I would take
Hèman dubh my lover out of it
Hèman dubh and I would not ask
Hi ri o ro who she belonged to
Hèman dubh hi ri o ro ho ro hu o

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Hè Mo Leannan

Sèist:
Hè mo leannan, hò mo leannan
’S e mo leannan am fear ùr
Hè mo leannan, hò mo leannan

’S e mo leannan Gille Calum –
Saor an daraich làidir thù.

’S e mo leannan am fear donn
A thogadh fonn anns an taigh-chiùil

’S e mo leannan saor an t-sàbhaidh
Leagadh lobhta làir go dlùth

Comhairle bheirinn fhìn air gruagach
A bhith cumail suas ri triùir –

Ged a dhèanadh ’ad uile fàgail
Bhiodh a làimh aic’ air fear ùr

’N chuala sibh mar dh’èirich dhòmhsa?
Chuir an t-òigear rium a chùl

Cha do mheas mi siud ach suarach
On a fhuair mi fear às ùr

Dh’fhalbh an gaol, sgaoil a’ comann –
Tha mise coma co-dhiù

Tha mi coma, ’s suarach agam;
Tha chead aige, ’s beag mo dhiù

Hè mo Leannan
San òran basaidh seo tha an seinneadair aig innse dhuinn mu dheidhinn a gaol agus, aig an deireadh, mu dheidhinn am mì-rùn a th’ aice a thaobh na tè a ghoid e bhuaipe.
This is an òran basaidh (a clapping song done at the end of waulking the tweed). In this song the singer firstly describes her love and then later in the song her ill-will towards the one who stole her love from her.

Listen to a version at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:
Sung by Rev. William Matheson of North Uist in 1975:
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/95202/13

Hè Mo Leannan

Hey my sweetheart, ho my sweetheart
He’s my sweetheart, this new fellow
Hey my sweetheart, ho my sweetheart

He’s my sweetheart, the lad Calum –
Carpenter of the strong oak, you

He’s my sweetheart, the brown-haired man
Who would raise a song in the music-house

He’s my sweetheart, carpenter of sawing
Would lay a loft floor so evenly

I would advise any girl
To be keeping up with three –

Although they all should leave her
Her hand would soon be with a new man

Have you heard what happened to me?
The young man has turned his back on me

I thought that pretty trifling
Since I now have a new one

Love vanished, the union broke –
I really don’t care

I don’t care, it’s a trifle to me
He can do as he likes, it’s little I care

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Ho Rò Mo Nighean Donn Bhòidheach

Sèist:
Ho rò mo nighean donn bhòidheach,
Hi rì mo nighean donn bhòidheach,
Mo chaileag laghach bhòidheach,
Cha phòsainn ach thu.

A nighean dhonn nam blàth-shùil
Gur trom a thug mi gràdh dhut;
Tha d’ ìomhaigh, ghaoil, is d’ àilleachd
A ghnàth tighinn fom ùidh.

Cha cheil mi air an t-saoghal
Gu bheil mo mhiann ’s mo ghaol ort;
’S ged chaidh mi uat air faondradh
Cha chaochail mo rùn.

Nuair bha ann ad làthair
Bu shona bha mo làithean
A’ sealbhachadh do mhànrain
Is àille do ghnùis.

Gnùis aoigheil, bhanail, mhalda,
Na h-òigh is caomha nàdar,
I suairce, ceanail, bàidheil,
Làn gràis agus mùirn.

Ach riamh on dh’fhàg mi d’ fhianais
Gu bheil mi dubhach, cianail;
Mo chridhe trom ga phianadh
Le iargain do ghnùis.

Ge lurach air a’ chabhsair
Na mnathan òga Gallda,
A rìgh, gur beag mo gheall-s’
Air bhith sealltainn ’n an gnùis.

’S ann tha mo rùn ’s na beanntaibh,
Far bheil mo rìbhinn ghreannar,
Mar ròs am fàsach shamraidh,
An gleann fad o shùil.

Ach nuair a thig an samhradh
Bheir mise sgrìob don ghleann ud,
’S gun tog mi leam don Ghalldachd
Gu h-annsail am flùr.

Ho Ro Mo Nighean Donn Bhòidheach
San òran gaoil seo bu mhiann leis an sgrìobhadair an nighean donn bhòidheach a phòsadh. Bidh thu a’ cluinntinn an òrain ainmeil seo sa Ghaeilge agus sa Bheurla cuideachd.
In this love song the writer wishes his brown-haired maiden was with him so that they could marry. There are also Irish Gaelic and English language versions of this popular song.

Listen to a version at the BBC’s Bliadhna nan Òran website:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/ho_ro_mo_nighean_donn_bhoidheach/

Ho Rò Mo Nighean Donn Bhòidheach

Chorus:
Ho ro my beautiful brown-haired maiden
Hi ri my beautiful brown-haired maiden
My kind, beautiful maiden
I would not marry anyone but you

Oh brown-haired maiden of the warm eyes
I loved you deeply
Your appearance, dear, and your beauty
Always come into my mind

I shall not conceal from the world
That you are my desire and that I love you
And though I strayed from you
My love will not change

When I was in your presence
Happy were my days
Enjoying your tuneful talk
And your beautiful countenance

Your cheerful, comely, calm countenance
The natural modest maiden
She who is kind, mild and affectionate
Full of grace and joy

But since the day I left your side
That I am sad, melancholic
My heart is heavy and pained
While missing your beauty

Although lovely are the maidens
On the byways of the city
I am not interested, my king,
In beholding their faces

My love and the mountains
Is where my beautiful girl is
Like a rose that grows in summer
In a glen far away

But when the summer comes
I shall make a trip to that glen
And I shall take with me to the Lowlands
Lovingly, the flower

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O Teannaibh Dlùth is Togaibh Fonn

O teannaibh dlùth is togaibh fonn
Mo chridhe trom air m’ aineol
‘S mi fad o eilean nan damh donn
‘S bho thìr nan gleann ‘s nan gallan

O beir an t-soraidh seo nis bhuam
Thar chuain is chruaich is bheannaibh
A dh’ ionnsaigh Muile nam beann fuar
O eilean uain’ a’ bharraich.

Och a Rìgh nach mi bha thall
An tìr nan gleann ‘s nam bealach
Tìr nan craobh siud tìr mo ghaoil
Nan lagan fraoich is raineach.

O siud na glinn ‘s am faighte ‘n aoigh
‘S na roinn chum taobh na mara
Tha luchd mo ghaoil-s’ an-diugh ma sgaoil
‘S an t-àit fo chaoraich Shasainn.

Gur truagh a’ Ghàidhlig bhith na càs
On dh’ fhalbh na Gàidheil a bh’ againn
A ghineil òig tha tighinn nan àit’
O togaibh ard a bratach.

O Teannaibh Dlùth is Togaibh Fonn
Seo òran cianail à Canada far a bheil am bàrd ag innse dhuinn mun a chianalas airson Alba agus cuideachd gu bheil e brònach le suidheachadh nan Gàidheal is na Gàidhlig. Tha an aon fhonn air an òran seo sa th’ air an òran cliùiteach ‘Barbara Allan’.
This is a plaintive song from Gaelic Canada where the bard describes his desire to be back in Scotland and sings of his sadness of the plight of the Gaels and Gaelic language. This song shares the melody of the well known folk song Barbara Allan.

Listen to a version at the BBC’s Bliadhna nan Òran website:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/alba/oran/orain/o_teannaibh_dluth_is_togaibh_fonn/

O Teannaibh Dlùth is Togaibh Fonn

Oh come closer and let us sing a song,
My heart is dejected in a strange land,
I am far away from the island of the brown stags,
And from the land of glens and saplings.

O bear this greeting from me now
Over the ocean, rounded hills and bens
To Mull of the cold mountains;
Oh green island of the birch trees.

Och, oh Lord, I wish I was over there
In the land of dales and mountain-gorges,
The land of trees is my own dear land
WIth heather hollows amongst the bracken.

Oh these are the valleys of kindness,
Especially in the districts beside the sea;
My loved ones have now scattered
And the place is overwhelmed by English sheep.

It is a pity Gaelic is in such a precarious state
Since the departure of the Gaels we knew,
Oh, youthful race, that has replaced them,
Unfurl its banner on high.

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’S Ann an Ìle

Sèist:
’S ann an Ìle, ’n Ìle, ’n Ìle
’S ann an Ìle rugadh mi
’S ann an Ìle, ’n Ìle, ’n Ìle
’S ann Ìle bhòidheach
’S ann an Ìle, ’n Ìle, ’n Ìle
’S ann an Ìle rugadh mi
’S ann an Ìle, ’n Ìle, ’n Ìle
’S ann Ìle bhòidheach

’S ann an Ìle ghuirm an fheoir
A rugadh mi ’s a thogadh mi
’S ann an Ìle ghuirm an fheoir
A rugadh mi ’s a bha mi
’S ann an Ìle ghuirm an fheoir
A rugadh mi ’s a thogadh mi
’S ann an Ìle ghuirm an fheoir
A rugadh mi ’s a bha mi

’S ann an Ìle bhòidheach
A rugadh mi ’s a thogadh mi
’S ann an Ìle bhòidheach
A rugadh mi ’s a bha mi
’S ann an Ìle bhòidheach
A rugadh mi ’s a thogadh mi
’S ann an Ìle bhòidheach
A rugadh mi ’s a bha mi

’S Ann an Ìle
Bidh clann gu tric a’ seinn an òrain seo a tha moladh Ìle àlainn.
This puirt-a-beul is often sung by children and praises the beautiful Island of Islay.

Listen to a version at the Am Baile website:
http://www.ambaile.org.uk/en/item/item_audio.jsp?item_id=63824

’S Ann an Ìle

Chorus:
It was in Islay, Islay, Islay
It was in Islay I was born
It was in Islay, Islay, Islay
It was in beautiful Islay
It was in Islay, Islay, Islay
It was in Islay I was born
It was in Islay, Islay, Islay
It was in beautiful Islay

It was in blue-grass Islay
I was born and I grew up
It was in blue-grass Islay
I was born and I was
It was in blue-grass Islay
I was born and I grew up
It was in blue-grass Islay
I was born and I was

It was in beautiful Islay
I was born and grew up
It was in beautiful Islay
I was born and I was
It was in beautiful Islay
I was born and grew up
It was in beautiful Islay
I was born and I was

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Seallaibh Curaich Eòghainn

Seallaibh curaich Eòghainn is còig ràmh fichead oirre
Seallaibh curaich Eòghainn ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn
Seallaibh curaich Eòghainn is còig ràmh fichead oirre
Seallaibh curaich Eòghainn ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn.

Sèist:
Bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann na sgiobair oirre
Bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn
Bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann na sgiobair oirre
Bidh Eòghann, bidh Eòghann ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn.

Seasaidh e ri fairge, carago is ballaist’ oirre
Seasaidh e ri fairge, ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn
Seasaidh e ri fairge, carago is ballaist’ oirre
Seasaidh e ri fairge, ’s i seachad air an Rubha Bhàn

Seallaibh Curaich Eòghainn
Òran sunndach far a bheil Èoghainn sa churrach aige le còig ràmh fichead oirre. Bidh thu a’ cluinntinn an òrain seo ann an Canada cuideachd.
A lively song in which the sailor Eòghainn is in his boat of 25 oars. This song is sung on both sides of the Atlantic.

Listen to a version at the Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches website:
Annie Arnott from Skye singing in 1954
http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/fullrecord/91571/1

Seallaibh Curaich Eòghainn

Look at Ewan’s coracle, with its twenty five oars
Look at Ewan’s coracle, she’s past the fair headland
Look at Ewan’s coracle, with its twenty five oars
Look at Ewan’s coracle, she’s past the fair headland

Chorus:
Ewan will be, Ewan will be, Ewan will be her skipper
Ewan will be, Ewan will be, she’s past the fair headland
Ewan will be, Ewan will be, Ewan will be her skipper
Ewan will be, Ewan will be, she’s past the fair headland

He will withstand the sea, cargo and ballast in her
He will withstand the sea, she’s past the fair headland
He will withstand the sea, cargo and ballast in her
He will withstand the sea, she’s past the fair headland

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