Sixth Collection of Strathspeys, Reels and Slow Tunes
by Niel Gow & Sons

Full title: Sixth Collection of Strathspeys, Reels and Slow Tunes For The Piano Forte, Harp, Violin, & Violoncello. Dedicated To the Most Noble the Marchioness of Huntly By Niel Gow & Sons. Ent. at Stat. Hall.

Publisher: Edinburgh: Nathaniel Gow & Son

Printer: Walker & Anderson

Date: [1822]


The basses have some single lines and some simple pianism. Generally, the tunes are less interesting, more 'air'-like and clearly with easy piano writing in mind - very different in character from the earliest books in the series.
The first two tunes are by Niel Gow jnr., a slow air and related strathspey: the first is unashamedly 19th-century, with occasional big arpeggios and flattened seventh modulation, whilst the strathspey has repeated octaves in the bass, and simpler harmony.
There is an apparent misattribution of 'Wha can help it' to Niel Gow (a pencil note on GB-Gu Ca12-y.36 reads 'NO! Malcolm McDonald - 1789').
There are big left hand arpeggios in Nathaniel Gow's 'Miss Everilda Fraser' (who gets her name in swirly engraving), and semiquaver and 32nd-note runs in the bassline to the slow air 'Huntly Lodge', again by Nathaniel.
There are variations (for piano?) on 'McIntosh's Lament. (Old)'. 'Lord Arbuthnot' has a very chromatic bassline, then simple variations/development, the final strain with an Alberti bass. 'The Braes of Bushbie' (marked 'Old' and 'A Favorite of Niel Gow') has simple repeated octave bass throughout.
'John Gow's compliments to the Minstrels of Scotland' has very violinistic figuration, with second position marked in places. John also composed 'The Prince Regents Favorite', which is more pianistic.
There is an advertisement for the Ancient Curious Collection at the end of the book: 'Speedily will be published with Bass, adapted for the Piano Forte, a Selection of Tunes with Variations, entitled the Curious Collection of Scotland. -- NB. each tune forming a separate lesson for the Piano Forte, or Violin and Violoncello'.

RISM: G3256

Gore: G10-6

Biographical info: Niel Gow (1727-1807), father of the famous Gow family, lived in Inver near Dunkeld. (Glen 2, viii-xiv; Grove; Alburger; Murdoch, 41-48) Gow's fourth son Nathaniel (1763-1831), violinist and Edinburgh publisher, was perhaps the most famous of the siblings; but his brothers William, John and Andrew also traded in music (John and Andrew in London). Nathaniel's son, Niel Junr., lived 1795-1823.


Aberdeen University Library
Birmingham University Library
Cambridge University Library
Dundee Central Library (Wighton Collection)
National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh
Edinburgh City Library
Edinburgh University Library
Mitchell Library, Glasgow
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Glasgow
University of Glasgow Library
Royal Academy of Music, London
British Library, London
Royal College of Music, London
Vaughan Williams Memorial Library, Cecil Sharp House, London
Manchester Public Library
Manchester University Library
Newcastle University Library
Bodleian Library, University of Oxford
A K Bell Library, Perth
Saint Andrews University Library
Sheffield University Library
National Library of Ireland, Dublin
Trinity College Dublin

GB-En 408(3) (1822)
GB-Gu Ca12-y.36 (with index, [1822])
GB-Gu Q.c.9 (Purdie & Nathaniel Gow, [1822-1825?])
GB-P Af42 (original edition, with index)
GB-P Af27 (original edition [1822])

    Digitised items

    This source has not been digitised.