A Collection of New Reels & Highland Strathspeys
by Campbell, Joshua

Tunes list

Copy details


Glasgow, for the author [Joshua Campbell]


James Johnson (sculpt)


at the music shops in Edinburgh and Glasgow






A K Bell Library, Perth (GB-P)




This Glasgow publication contains mostly strathspeys, with lots of Campbells mentioned in tune titles. There are some variation sets, and strathspey-jig pairs, and a fiddle pibroch; also some tunes by William Marshall. Glen dates it as 1779 on the evidence of notices in a concert announcement; Gore dates it c.1786, presumably from GB-En Glen 327, apparently assuming it to be Campbell's first collection. However, the GB-P binding has 'Joshua Campbell's 2nd Collection', and J Murdoch Henderson dates it 1789, also suggesting this. The reasons for some libraries' datings of [1786] are unclear. A third, shorter, edition of 36 pages with basses 'Corrected by P. Urbani' was published by Edinburgh music-sellers Urbani & Liston from their address at 10 Princes Street, where they traded from 1796-1806.


Comparing 'The New Town of Edinburgh' (p.46) as a Strathspey with the version in Bremner's Second collection of Reels shows how the strathspey version has become much more ornate. The collection generally offers simple 4-beat basslines, not always doing the most obvious thing: 'Lord Kelly's Reel' has a (wrongly engraved?) passage with two basslines simultaneously. Urbani's later 'corrected' basses are a little more pianistic, and sometimes wider in tessitura.

Copy notes

Title page is missing, and there is a MS list indicating which tunes have been altered 'from 1st vol.'. JMH (Henderson) pencil note: '[1788-9]', pencil dated '1789' on p1. JMH notes, 'Many of these tunes are altered or renamed from other collections or from 1st book', suggesting that this copy is of the 2nd edition.


48 p




36 x 26



Biographical info

Campbell (c.1730-1801) was a Glasgow musician, composer, guitar teacher and bellringer. (Glen 1, ix)

Other locations

GB-A Hend inst Cam J c (1st edition, with J Murdoch Henderson pencil annotations. Later editions change the titles of 'The Royal Edinburgh Volunteers' and 'Lady Elpheston's Strathspey'.)
GB-DUcl 7063 (Urbani & Liston edition, c.1796-1806)
GB-En Glen 327 (Urbani & Liston edition, lacking pp.31-36, supplied in ink MS by JMH)
GB-En Inglis 170(2)
GB-En MH.12 (Urbani & Liston edition)
GB-Lbl g.271.l.(1) (1st edition)
GB-Lbl h.210.a.(2) (Urbani & Liston edition)