Brigh an Òrain - A Story in Every Song

Brigh an Òrain - A Story in Every Song

Lauchie MacLellan
Translated and edited by John Shaw
Introduction by Alistair MacLeod
Copyright Date: 2000
Pages: 592
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt7zsrb
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    Brigh an Òrain - A Story in Every Song
    Book Description:

    Few published collections of Gaelic song place the songs or their singers and communities in context. Brìgh an Òrain - A Story in Every Song corrects this, showing how the inherited art of a fourth-generation Canadian Gael fits within biographical, social, and historical contexts. It is the first major study of its kindto be undertaken for a Scottish Gaelic singer. The forty-eight songs and nine folktales in the collection are transcribed from field recordings and presented as the singer performed them, with an English translation provided. All the songs are accompanied by musical transcriptions. The book also includes a brief autobiography in Lauchie MacLellan's entertaining narrative style. John Shaw has added extensive notes and references, as well as photos and maps.In an era of growing appreciation of Celtic cultures, Brìgh an Òrain - A Story in Every Song makes an important Gaelic tradition available to the general reader. The materials also serve as a unique, adaptable resource for those with more specialized research or teaching interests in ethnology/folklore, Canadian studies, Gaelic language, ethnomusicology, Celtic studies, anthropology, and social history.

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-6851-8
    Subjects: Music

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. ii-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-x)
  3. Foreword
    (pp. xi-xiv)
    Alistair MacLeod

    I grew up about two miles from the home of Lauchie MacLellan. He worked for many years as a carpenter and the windows through which I view the ocean as I write this were once installed by him. The house was originally built by my great-grandfather and he looked down from his picture “in the parlour” then, as he does now. When Lauchie MacLellan installed the windows, I believe the year was 1948 or perhaps it was a few years later. Lauchie was working on the outside of the house and was trying to insert a particularly stubborn part...

  4. Preface
    (pp. xv-xviii)
    John Shaw
  5. Introduction
    (pp. xix-xxvii)

    In the summer of 1963, Inverness County, Cape Breton, was still largely Gaelic speaking and the annual parish concert held in early July was one of the main events of the summer. As a young student from the outside, working during the holidays on the glebe farm in the small rural community of Glendale, I had not fully understood the necessity of the elaborate preparations by the people of the parish, lasting up to a week and involving everything from fencing to building a raised stage and the constant monitoring of weather reports over the local radio station. It all...

  6. ILLUSTRATIONS
    (pp. xxviii-xxxii)
  7. Part One Gaelic Singing and Broad Cove Parish
    (pp. 1-54)

    One evening during the summer of 1953 after a day’s work in the lumber woods of Labrador, a woodsworker by the name of Lauchie MacLellan, from the parish of Broad Cove on the western shore of Cape Breton Island, was attracted by singing in an adjoining camp and walked over to investigate. As he approached he became aware that the songs were not in English, nor in Scottish Gaelic (his first language), but nevertheless contained something that seemed strangely familiar. The Canadian lumber camps attracted a great variety of nationalities, and after some time had passed, Lauchie, his curiosity by...

  8. Part Two Air Réir Mo Sgeula
    (pp. 55-94)

    [‘S] mise Lachlainn mac Dhòmhnaill Nìll ‘ic ‘Illeasbuig ‘ic Fhearchair ‘ac Fhearchair ‘ac Néill.¹ Rugadh agus thogadh mi thall ann an Dunbheagain ann a’ Siorramachd Inbhirnis. Rugadh mi air an naoidheamh latha deug dhen t-Samhainn ann an naoidh ceud deug agus a deich. Dh’fhàg mo shìn seanair, Gilleasbu’ mac Fhearchair, dh’fhàg e Beòraid Mórair anns a’ bhliadhna … chan eil mi buileach cinneach co-dhiubh bha e ochd ceud deug ‘s a h-ochd deug airneo ochd ceud deug agus a fichead. Air réir mar a chuala mise bha Beòraid Àrd agus Beòraid Ìseal ann. Tha mi deanadh dheth gur ann à...

  9. PART THREE NA H-ÒRAIN
    • Òrain Gaoil
      (pp. 97-148)

      A-raoir a rinn mi ‘m bruadal

      Dh’fhàg mo chadal luaineach;

      Mur dean mi do bhuannachd

      ‘S truagh nach robh mi ‘s talamh.

      T’aghaidh thana nàrach

      Gu sealltainn an sgàthan;

      Mheud ‘s a thug mi ghràdh dhut

      A dh’fhàg mi air m’aineol.

      Tha do nàdar còmhnard

      Gun fhaoineis, gun ghòraich’,

      Iriseal, ro-spòrsail,

      Beusach, bòidheach, banail.

      Do shlios mar an fhaoileann

      Do ghruaidh mar na caorainn,

      Mala nan trì faobhar

      ‘San aodann gun smalan.

      Tha do chliù ‘s do bheusan

      Co-mire ri chéile;

      ‘S binne na na teudan

      An téis a thig bho t’anail.

      ‘S binne liom do chòmhradh

      Na ‘chuthag ‘s...

    • Òrain Sèolaidh
      (pp. 149-187)

      Nuair a thog sinn oirnn bho thìr

      Toirt ar cùl ri tìr Shasainn,

      Bha MacCoinnich ann ‘s MacLeòid

      Siod an còmhlan bha taitneach.

      Bha Niall Dubh ‘s mac Iain Ruaidh

      A’ toirt bhuaip’ a cuid slatan,

      Bha MacGhriogair anns na ruip

      Chuir e greim ris an acair.

      Fhuair sinn buill do chòcraich ùr

      Cruinn do ghiuthas dhubh bu taitneach,

      Eadar-chinn nach robh meanbh

      Sìoda dealradh ‘na bratach.

      Bha cuid ullagan gun mheang

      Mar sin a cuid ruip is acfhuinn;

      Darach nach tréigeadh a chaoidh

      Eadar druim agus aisnean.

      Bha i astarach gun mheang

      Dìreadh bheann is ghleann le tapadh;

      Soilleir...

    • Òrain Luaidh
      (pp. 188-236)

      É ho hì ‘s na hóireann ó gu

      É ho hì ‘s na hóireann ó gu

      Nighean dubh, nighean donn dhut is éibhinn

      É ho hi ‘s na hù o hi,

      ‘S na hao ri rì ‘s na hóireann ó gu.

      Nighean dubh, nighean donn dhut is éibhinn

      É ho hi ‘s na hóireann ó gu

      Na bric ‘s na bradain a’ leum riut

      É ho hi ‘s na hù o hi,

      ‘S na hao ri rì ‘s na hóireann ó gu.

      Aig bruach do leabadh ‘s tu ‘g éirigh

      Na fir gheala dol ‘nan éideadh

      ‘S e maraich’ bha stri mo bhuanndachd

      Ma ‘s...

    • Òrain Ionadail
      (pp. 237-278)

      [Sgeul a thug Seumas dha’ m ionnsaigh

      Anns a’ mhadainn an am dùsgadh,

      Gun tànaig na seòid dhan dùthaich

      Sliochd Iain Mhùideartaich nan ròiseal.]

      Chaidh mi sios gu leth-taobh Mhàrtainn

      Rinn mi nochdadh ris an t-sàile;

      ‘S ann a chunna mi ‘n té bhàn

      A-mach mu choinneimh tràigh nan Leòdach.

      Té bhòidheach nan guaillean geala

      Thànaig oirnn bho thìr an Eilein

      Air an robh luchd nan cùl donna;

      Shiod agaibh na gallain òga!

      Siod an iùbhrach seach a’ rubha,

      Falbh gu h-eutrom ‘sa chaol sruthach;

      Am bàta bòidheach fo làn-uidheam,

      ‘S ùr a’ bhuidheann tha ga seòladh.

      Chan ìoghnadh liom...

    • Òrain Cogaidh
      (pp. 279-285)

      Nam biodh duine ‘nam chòir a dh’éisdeadh ri’m ghlòir

      Chan eil mo bhun-sgeòil gun reusan;

      Gu bheil m’aigneadh cho mòr air a lìonadh le bròn,

      Chan eil mi air dòigh ach éiseil.

      ‘S gad nach eil mi ach òg ‘s beag m’aighear ri ceòl,

      Rinn mo mhànran ‘s mo phròis mo thréigsinn;

      Dol dhan arm le m’ cheart deòin ‘s mi chaidh iomrall

      ’sa cheò,

      ‘S e mo bhargan nach d’ chòrd ’ na dhéidh rium.

      Nuair a shuidh sinn mun bhòrd ‘s a ghlac mis’ an t-òr

      Gu robh dream nach robh còir gar n-éisdeachd;

      Gu robh danns agus...

    • Òrain Sìdh
      (pp. 286-288)

      Gura mise tha fo mhulad

      O ró na hiù ra bhi hiù o

      ‘S mi sealg air a’ Choire Bhuidhe

      Hoireann is hao ri ó ro hò.

      Mi sealg air a’ Choire Bhuidhe

      ‘S mise a chuala ‘s cha d’chuir umhail

      Gus an cualas guth an fhithich

      Thu ‘nad shìneadh anns a’ mhunadh

      I am greatly saddened

      O ró na hiù ra bhi hiù o

      Hunting in the yellow corrie

      Hoireann is hao ri ó ro hò.

      Hunting in the yellow corrie

      I heard, but paid no heed

      Until the raven’s cry revealed

      That you were lying on the mountain....

    • Òrain Botuil
      (pp. 289-300)

      A bhean an taighe, lìon an càrt dhuinn,

      Na biodh cùram ort mu phàigheadh;

      Nuair a thilleas mis’ am màireach

      Seo mo làmh gum pàigh mi ‘n t-suim.

      Gad a dh’fhalbhainn-sa le m’ bhràthair

      Dol a dh’iarraidh bean am màireach,

      Thaghainn i, ’s i bean deagh mhàthair

      Gad bhiodh stoc a’ bhlàir dha dìth.

      Caileag leadanach a’ chuailein

      Theid gu luinneagach dhan bhuailidh;

      ‘S mór gum b’annsa bhith ri’d ghualainn

      Na bean uasal ‘g am biodh maoin.

      [Am] fear as motha crodh air buailidh

      Bidh e strì ri tuilleadh bhuanndachd;

      Nuair a shaoileas e bhith ‘n uachdar

      Bidh e ‘n...

  10. PART FOUR NA SGEULACHDAN
    • 1 AN SIONNACH ’S A’ CHORRA-GHRITHEACH
      (pp. 302-305)

      Bho chionna fhad an t-saoghail an cian ann an ceàrn iomallach dhen domhain bha dithis a’ cumail taighe: a’ sionnach agus a’ chorra-ghritheach. Fhuair a’ chorra-ghritheach, air dòigh air choireiginn fhuair i cuach ime, agus chuir i a’ chuach ime am falach. Bha i a’ gràdhainn gum biodh an t-ìm math a-nunn deireadh an earraich.

      Ach bha a’ sionnach a’ cumail a shùil oirre agus chunnaic e fon a chuir i a’ chuach ime am falach. Ach air latha dhe na lathaichean thug e éibheach uamhasach as.

      “Gu dé sin ort, gu dé sin ort?” thuirt a’ chorra-ghritheach.

      “Thà,” thuirt...

    • 2 AN GADAICHE DUBH
      (pp. 306-325)

      Chan eil naidheachd ùr agam, ach bho nach eil naidheachd ùr agam innsidh mi seann naidheachd. An naidheachd a tha mise dol a dh’innse, thachair i bho chionn iomadh bliadhna.¹ Thachair i nuair a bhruidhneadh na cearcan agus na coilich agus a dh’innseadh a’ chòmhchag sgeulachd, agus cha b’ann an dé a bha sin.

      Tha mi dol a dh’innse naidheachd air rìgh a bha a’ fuireach ann an ceàrn iomallach dhen domhain aig an robh oighreachd mhór, bheairteach. Agus bha a’ rìgh ’na dhuine glé mheasail. Bha meas mór aig a chuid sheirbhisich air agus bha meas aig a’ rìoghachd...

    • 3 AISLING CHADAIL LACHLAINN
      (pp. 326-341)

      Air feasgar ciùin samhraidh, ‘s a’ ghrian a’ teàrnadh gu blàth, séimh, socrach dhan àird an iar, ghabh mi sgrìob sios chun a’ chladaich. Bha craobh mhór leamhain goirid do bheing a’ chladaich. Shìn mi mi-fhìn fo bhonn na craoibh’ agus a réir mo sgeula thànaig plothadh do chadal orm.

      Thug mi sùil a-mach air a’ chuan agus chunnaic mi long mhór, bhriagh air acaire a-mach pìosan bhon chladach agus bàta a’ tighinn gu tìr le dithisd sheòladairean air na ràimh agus coltas boireannach ’na suidhe ‘n toiseach a’ bhàta. Thànaig iad gu tìr agus choisich nighean òg, bhòidheach, air...

    • 4 HIGE-HAIGE IS RÀTHAG
      (pp. 342-349)

      Bha Hige-Haige agus Ràthag, bha iad a’ fuireach ann an ceàrn iomallach dhen domhain. Bha triùir nighean aca. Bha Hige-Haige, cha robh dad sam bith aige mu dheidhinn latha-obrach a dheanadh. B’fheàrr leis gu mór suidhe suas aig an taigh gu dìomhain. Ach air latha dhe na làithean có thànaig dh’ionnsaigh an taighe ach Boc nan Adhaircean Cnuacach, agus dh’iarr Boc nan Adhaircean Cnuacach air Hige-Haige am faigheadh e an nighean bu shine aige ri phòsadh. Thuirt Hige-Haige, “Bheirinn-sa dha na geòidh ghlas’ i,” thuirt esan, “nan gabhadh iad bhuam i.”

      Agus ‘s e bh’ann gun do phòs Boc nan...

    • 5 CROM A’ GHILLE CROMAIDH AGUS DONN A’ GHILLE DONNAIDH
      (pp. 350-351)

      Bha Crom a’ Ghille Cromaidh, bha e latha a’ coiseachd sios taobh na tràghadh agus thànaig fairge a-staigh m’a chasan, agus ghabh e ‘n teagal. Agus thog e rith’ gus an d’rànaig e Donn a’ Ghille Donnaidh. Dh’fhoighneachd Donn a’ Ghille Donnaidh, “Gu dé tha ceàrr?”

      “Tha,”ors’ esan, “ambràth a’ tighinn.”

      “Có chunnaic ‘s a dh’fhairich e?” thuirt Donn a’ Ghille Donnaidh

      “’S mis’ a chunnaic ‘s a dh’fhairich e. Nach ann fo’m bhonnaibh a thànaig e?”

      A-mach a ghabh iad gus an d’rànaig iad Sagart Ghleann an Fhàsaich.

      Dh’fhoighneachd Sagart Ghleann an Fhàsaich dhaibh gu dé bha ceàrr. O, Crom...

    • 6 EADAR AN STIORAP ’S AN LÀR
      (pp. 352-353)

      Airson innse dhuibh cho beag fios ‘s a th’againne air tròcair agus air mathas Dé: bha uair dha robh saoghal, bha mèirleach – murtair, no ge b’e dé tha toil agaibh a chanaid ris. Bha e h-uile latha a’ marbhadh ‘s a’ goid, ach air feasgar dhe na feasgraichean airneo ma dh’fhaoidte oidhche dhe na h-oidhcheannan [a] bha e falbh, e fhéin agus an t-each, thuit e as an dìollaid agus mun do bhuail an ceann aige an talamh dh’iarr e mathanas air Dia: mathanas thoirt dha airson a h- uile h-eucoir a rinn e air.

      Ach air feasgar dhe...

    • 7 NIGHEAN A’ CHÙBAIR
      (pp. 354-355)

      Uair dha robh saoghal bha cùbair ann. Bha e deanadh a bheòshlaint air cùbaireachd agus bha aon nighean aige. Agus bha ‘n nighean a bha seo, bha i air leth maiseach.

      Ach bha triùir do ghillean a’ tighinn a choimhead oirre. Agus bha aon fhear dhiubh a b’fheàrr leath’ na càcha. Ach thuirt a h-athair rith’ latha a bha seo, “Tha iad seo a-nist – na gillean seo – tighinn a choimhead ort agus tha mise a’ dol a dh’fhaighinn an triùir dhiubh ann a’ seo air oidhche àraide. Agus am fear as fheàrr dhiubh a chuireas cearcall air cuman, ‘s e...

    • 8 Brògan an t-Sagairt
      (pp. 356-357)

      Tha mi dol a dh’innse dhut sgeul bheag ann a’ seo [bho] Eóghann Dhòmhnaill ‘ic Aonghuis, sàr-charaide dhomh fhìn, air duine bha fuireach a-mach air Cùl Chreiginis.

      Agus bha e ‘na dhuine bochd; cha robh dad sam bith dhen t-saoghal aige. Ach bhiodh e coiseachd mun cuairt air feadh na dùthchadh agus mar bu trice bhiodh e tagairt air àit’ an t-sagairt. Agus gheobhadh e cuid na h-oidhche agus ma dh’fhaoidte ‘sa mhadainn gum faigheadh e léine, airneo triubhsair …

      Ach co-dhiubh air trup dhe na trupan a bha e a’ coimhead air seann Mhaighstir Eairdsidh a bha ‘n Siudaig...

    • 9 NAIDHEACHD A’ BHÒCAIN AS A’ CHAMAS LEATHAN
      (pp. 358-364)

      Bidh sinn uileadh a’ bruidhinn air bòcain a’ siod ‘s a’ seo agus bha ‘n Camas Leathan – no Broad Cove – bha an cuid bhòcan fhéin aca ‘n sin cuideachd. Ach ‘s e bòcain ghasda a bh’aca ann am Broad Cove: chachuala mi gun d’rinn iad eucoir riamh air duine, ach neo-ar-thaing nachdo chuir iad eagal orra. Ach tha mi dol a dh’innse dhuibh naidheachd bheag ann a’ seo agus ‘s e ’n fhìrinn a th’ann.

      Bheir sinn Iain air an duine seo. Bha e fuireach a-mach cùl Broad Cove.’S e duine mór, làidir, socrach, ciùin a bh’ann an Iain...

  11. Notes
    (pp. 365-418)
  12. Sources
    (pp. 419-428)
  13. Index
    (pp. 429-432)