‘Welcome Home My Dearie’ is the name of the tune Piper James Ritchie played ‘with
might and main’, marching in front of a wedding procession through the town of Peebles
in the mid-18th century. In this second volume of his history of piping in the Scottish
Lowlands, Pete Stewart presents a vivid picture of life in the Lowland countryside,
in the burgh towns and in Edinburgh, charting the role of the bagpiper through a
century which saw so many dramatic changes.
Framed between the two elegies, one for a piper at the beginning of the century,
loved and mourned, and one form the end of the century, despised and rejected,
Includes more than 120 tunes from 18th century manuscripts and rare publications
Welcome Home My Dearie pieces together the story of the bagpipe in the Lowlands from
its heyday in the late 17th century to its gradual decline in the 19th
century. It is a detective story too, using contemporary sources and long-forgotten
images to reclaim history from legend, and like all good detective stories, it
has a twist in the tail.