The Banff and Buchan Collection

Mary Keenan, Tifty, 14/03/1994

Mima Borwick, Longside, 15/03/1994

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NEFA 1994.025.01    Transcription
P: Mary Keenan
T: Composing
S: Has to compose when alone.

NEFA 1994.025.02    Transcription
P: Mary Keenan
T: Sellin Up
FL: Twis on a Martinmas market day, the snow lay on the ground
S: People built consumption dykes and scraped a living from the land. Now the farms are no longer viable and they have had to sell up. She won the Aikey Fair song competition.
Mary Macaulay was her maiden name. Husband from Dundee, Glasgow Irish family. Mary Macvicar Macaulay is her full name.

NEFA 1994.025.03    Transcription    
P: Mary Keenan
T: Chris's Song
S: Old recording of Chris's Song, which she wrote about Chris Guthrie (Sunset Song), sung by MK's sister. Wrote it quite early. Some talk over the song.

NEFA 1994.025.04    Transcription
P: Mary Keenan
T: Composing
S: MK always found composing really easy. She has composed a lot of music, but not too many Scottish songs. Story of Mary Comes Home from America, a family with a cousin in America who spreads gifts around, but with no understanding of people's basic needs.

NEFA 1994.025.05    Transcription
P: Mary Keenan
T: Son listens to music
S: MK's son listens to all the 60s and 70s stuff. All the kids are musical, but not into folk music.

NEFA 1994.025.06    Transcription
P: Mary Keenan
T: Malcolm

S: Melody of a song she wrote for a friend's child (played on Cubase). [A couple of false starts.]

NEFA 1994.025.07-08    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick  D: 15/03/1994
T: Announcement
S: He could never get a horse to go straight.
Father played the pipes and the melodion without lessons. Oldest sister played the accordion. Bothy men played anything, without lessons. There were seven siblings in her family and they always had concerts. She has a sister up in Findhorn. In their youth, they would have a sing song in the house every night. Always interested in songs. Most of MB's songs come from books and from other people and she has always written them down. Born in Huntly, her father was a cottar at Drumblade. They then went to Old Meldrum, Ardconan for ten years. They came to Longside in 1931. Father retired at sixty-four because of the stour from the mill. They moved up to Stuartfield for fourteen years, then back to Longside (MB's house) forty-one years ago. Mother used to call the house Land's End because it was on its own. Both parents from Orkney. He came down here when he was about seventeen.

NEFA 1994.025.09
P: Mima Borwick
T: Hogmanay pastimes
S: Used to go out on Hogmanay. Once they tied a spool against a window and tapped on the window over and over. They got the couple to drain their water, but they finally figured out what was going on. People used to take gates off their hinges and put them somewhere else. Some lads put a plough up to the school. The policeman made them carry it all the way back. When they were young, they would go to dances at Mintlaw Station. Before Hogmanay, they would not go to dances for six or eight weeks, saving money for the pub on Hogmanay. If there was a light on on the way home from Mintlaw to Longside, they would go in. She has heard of putting a turf atop a chimney. Some of the boys hung a woman's washing up between two chimneys.

NEFA 1994.025.10    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: Hogmanay fun (2)
FL: O a' my friens noo awa
S: You would usually take a little something with you when going door to door on Hogmanay. They did not do anything special for Halloween. They would put up stockings at Christmas, but did not get much. They got a penny every third Saturday. Sometimes they would get a lucky tattie, occasionally with half penny inside it.

NEFA 1994.025.11    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: They never celebrated Easter
S: They did not really have a rhyme for Hogmanay, or celebrate Easter at all. Hogmanay rounds were mostly just social visits with all the news, few songs.

NEFA 1994.025.12    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: The Aul Rusty Bike
FL: I'm thinking tonight of the old rustic bridge

S: Parody of the Aul Rustic Bridge by the Mill. Orkney man that sings it. Made by Tower, the father of a Peterhead councillor. She got it from a woman in Fetterangus, Isobel Stewart, the blacksmith's daughter.

NEFA 1994.025.13    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: Princie an Jean
FL: I'll sing ye a sang o a cantie aul body
S: Orkney song. She does not know who made it, or sung it.

NEFA 1994.025.14    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: The Lass fae Cornhill
FL: As I gaed by the border side, I chancit for tae see

NEFA 1994.025.15    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: Ma First Hairst
FL: In echteen hundert an sixty three

S: Recitation of a poem by CN a man who was fee'd with her brother at Old Meldrum.

NEFA 1994.025.16    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: Feeing markets
S: MB worked on farms, but never went to a feeing market. When her mother broke her leg, she moved back home to look after her. After that, she worked at Cross and Blackwell's in Peterhead. Born in 1920.

NEFA 1994.025.17    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: The Turra Coo
O Turra Coo, O Turra Coo, thy like we niver sa
S: She did the Turra Coo last week at the Longside Folk Club. Cannot remember who gave it to her.

NEFA 1994.025.18    Transcription
P: Mima Borwick
T: The 1970 Flu
FL: The flu bug struck on Hogmanay
S: Poem by MB's sister (Findhorn). She made poetry back when she was quite young.


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