Charlie was born in 1916 in the Black Isle, Ross-shire, and
worked on farms there, in the Lothians and in Forfar.
People sometimes think that such songs must only have been
handed down from singer to singer by the 'oral process' of listening and
learning, but writing down the words, or finding them in print, often happened.
Charlie remembered hearing the tune of this song sung in his
younger days, but he learned the words from a version printed in Ewan MacColl's
book Scotland Sings (1952). That
version had been collated by Hamish Henderson from two versions he had recorded
for the archives of the School of Scottish Studies in Edinburgh.
This site is created and maintained by Ewan McVicar.
This site is to replace the Education Scotland Scotland's Songs site that was 'taken down' in January 2017.