The Athole Collection
The Athole Collection of Scottish Dance Music is recognised as one of the principal sources in this field. Its compiler, James Stewart Robertson of Edradynate, Perthshire, was a founding member of The Edinburgh Highland Reel and Strathspey Society and its president from 1881. He published his collection of 870 strathspeys, reels, jigs, hornpipes and country dances in 1884.
The collection was reprinted in 1961, but for many years was out of print, and although scholars and players were aware of the book, it was difficult to obtain direct access to it. Meanwhile, interest in Scottish Music in general and the older tunes in particular was being fostered by players, teachers and dance bands in Scotland, Cape Breton and elsewhere and taken up by an enthusiastic public.
A reprint by Balnain House, Inverness in 1996, enthusiastically welcomed, is now out of print. In republishing the Collection in 2008, Highland Music Trust has followed their lead in producing a working volume for today's players, omitting the rudimentary bass lines of the original but leaving the melody lines unaltered and the music grouped in keys. For the first time, notes have been provided on the sources of the tunes, with references to earlier and contemporaneous collections. These have been prepared by Charles Gore, compiler of the prestigious Scottish Fiddle Music Index.
The book reprints the Foreword by the late Duke of Atholl and Introduction by the great Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser, both from the 1996 edition.
There are 182 pages of music, and the book is available in soft cover and also in a limited edition hard cover version (100 copies only).
Soft cover - £15
Postage and packing is calculated when ordering.
Hard cover - £20